In order to position themselves better defensively down the stretch, the Washington Capitals have recalled defenseman Josef Boumedienne and forward Trent Whitfield from AHL affiliate Portland.
With an ankle injury to Caps defenseman Ken Klee, the Caps were not necessarily in need of another defenseman with Rick Berry and J.F. Fortin at their disposal, however coach Cassidy obviously preferred a “responsible” puck moving defenseman; especially as the playoffs near. Josef will provide that, as well as another non-passive blue liner, which is something the Capitals have lacked all season.
The Capitals penalty kill has also been struggling as of late and the addition of Trent Whitfield will not only add additional leadership to an otherwise non-used 4th line, but will also be able to help the struggling penalty-kill unit. Over the past two games, the Caps have given up 7 power play goals (in 15 attempts), a staggering conversion rate of 46%.
As the Capitals head down the stretch, special teams becomes more and more important. Both recalled players seem to be focused on the improvement in this area, as well as surring up overall team defense.
Washington is also only allowed one more recall this season as they have used three out of the four allotted, having already called-up pugilistic forward Stephen Peat.