Amidst trade buzz, Caps forward Andre Burakovsky had not dressed for a game in nearly two weeks. But now that we’re into the holiday roster freeze and he cannot be moved, there’s less of a reason to keep Burakovsky out of the lineup. Still, considering that the Caps have won 12 of their last 15 games, it was probably not an easy decision for head coach Todd Reirden to bring him back. Tonight Burakovsky steps in as Dmitrij Jaskin and Travis Boyd will be scratches.
While it’s good to see Burakovsky back in the lineup, I wonder if the team’s anxiety over its mediocre penalty kill is sabotaging lineup decisions overall. Ideally, Burakovsky should really slot in for Devante Smith-Pelly.