Ilya Samsonov gave up four goals on 39 shots during the Capitals’ 5-2 loss to the Montreal Canadiens Friday.
Saturday morning, the Caps’ backup netminder was sent down to Hershey, but not for the reason you might think.
The Capitals, who are without Carl Hagelin and Nic Dowd due to day-to-day, nagging injuries, played with 11 forwards against the Montreal Canadiens. Because they did not have enough cap room to promote a forward from Hershey, the team called up Tyler Lewington and the defenseman played 8:49 as a fourth-line forward.
The last time Tyler Lewington played forward was when he was 10-years-old. "It's been a while." pic.twitter.com/PqNfb6MdM3
— Ian Oland (@ianoland) November 16, 2019
Saturday, the Capitals recalled forward Travis Boyd and goaltender Vitek Vanecek from the Hershey Bears and assigned goaltender Ilya Samsonov and Lewington to Hershey. Vanecek makes $209k less than Samsonov, who was not going to start tonight anyways, which allowed the Capitals just enough cap space to bring back Boyd. Samsonov and defenseman Jonas Siegenthaler are the only Capitals players too who do not have to be put on waivers to be sent down.
According to CapFriendly, the Capitals have only $192,205 of available cap space so this will be a juggling act for the rest of the season.
More from the Caps:
ARLINGTON, Va. – The Washington Capitals have recalled forward Travis Boyd and goaltender Vitek Vanecek from the Hershey Bears of the American Hockey League (AHL) and assigned goaltender Ilya Samsonov and defenseman Tyler Lewington to Hershey, senior vice president and general manager Brian MacLellan announced today.
Boyd, 26, has recorded four assists in six games with the Capitals this season. The 6’0”, 190-pound forward has recorded 25 points (5g, 20a) in 67 career games with the Capitals. Last season with Washington, the Hopkins, Minn., native’s 1.01 primary assists per 60 minutes of five-on-five play ranked second on the Capitals, behind only Evgeny Kuznetsov (1.15).
Vanecek, 23, is 4-2-1 with Hershey this season with a 2.65 goals against average and a .894 save percentage. Last season with Hershey, the 6’1”, 187-pound goaltender posted a record of 21-10-6 with a 2.62 goals against average and a .907 save percentage in 38 games with the Bears last season. He was named to the 2019 AHL All-Star Classic and was named the CCM/AHL Player of the Week for the period ending Oct. 21, 2018.
Samsonov, 22, is 5-2-1 with the Capitals this season with a 2.65 goals against average and a .912 save percentage. The 6’3”, 208-pound goaltender became the first rookie goaltender in franchise history to win his first five career starts, the 18th goaltender in NHL history to accomplish this feat and the first since Charlie Lindgren of the Montreal Canadiens from April 7, 2016 to Nov. 7, 2017. Last season with Hershey, Samsonov had a record of 20-14-5 with a 2.70 goals against average and a .898 save percentage.
Lewington, 24, has appeared in six games with the Capitals this season one game with Hershey. The 6’2”, 200-pound defenseman recorded 15 points (3g, 12a) in 65 games with Hershey in 2018-19 and logged 121 penalty minutes, which led the team and ranked tied for ninth in the AHL. In 241 career AHL games, Lewington has recorded 49 points (12g, 37a), 501 penalty minutes and has posted a +29 plus/minus rating.
Headline photo: Elizabeth Kong
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