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Caps prospect watch: Barber's scoring, but the Bears are not

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USA TODAY Sports

Caps prospect watch: Barber's scoring, but the Bears are not

Well, the good news is that Hershey snapped its losing streak. The bad news is they still have lost 11 of 12.

The biggest issue by far of late hs been the team's inability to score. One player who has not been having any trouble, however, is Riley Barber.

In the Bears' three games this week, Barber scored four goals bringing his season total up to a team-high 16. That puts him just 10 goals shy of his career high of 26 with 28 games left in the season.

That's a very attainable number, especially considering he and Travis Boyd will likely become the offensive focal point of the team with Chris Bourque headed to the Olympics.

CHECK OUT THIS WEEK’S UPDATED CAPS’ PROSPECT RANKINGS HERE

Other prospect notes:

  • Liam O'Brien did not play in any of Hershey's three games over the week. He is day-to-day with an upper-body injury.
  • Lucas Johansen is teaming up with his brother, Ryan, in a new three-year partnership with the Eagle Ridge Hospital Foundation to lend their names to the Foundation's annual charity golf classic. The Ryan and Lucas Johansen Charity Golf Classic will be held July 10  at the Swaneset Golf and Country Club in British Columbia.
  • Goalie Adam Carlson was reassigned from the South Carolina Stingrays to the Indy Fuel, another ECHL team. He played two periods in his debut on Friday against the Wheeling Nailers, stopping 20 of the 25 shots he faced.
  • Garrett Pilon scored a career-high four points (2 goals, 2 assists) Saturday to help lead Everett past Kelowna 8-2 in the WHL. Pilon seems to be making an impression on his new team.
    "He’s doing everything wanted from him," head coach Dennis Williams said. "But I’m even more impressed with what he does away from the puck and his responsibilities in the D-zone. He tracks pucks hard and when you’re a 200-foot player you have a really good chance to be an effective player in this league and at the next level.”
  • In addition to being a finalist for the Hobey Baker, Brian Pinho has also been named one of 16 semifinalists for the Walter Brown Award which is given to the best American-born college hockey player in New England.
  • Damien Riat will be leaving his team, Geneve-Servette HC, for HC Bienne, also known as Biel-Bienne, at the end of the season. He has signed a two-year contract there.
    A scout for Biel-Bienne gave this rundown of the new player (as translated by Google Translate): "Riat is a powerful skater with a low, steady stride and good speed. He moves most of the time with a high level of energy and faces the opponent unreservedly. I also appreciate his wrist shot, as well as his play in both directions, already well done for his age."

Who are the Caps' top 10 prospects? Find out here in his week's updated rankings.

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Blackhawks fans tossed after directing racist remarks at Washington's Smith-Pelly

Blackhawks fans tossed after directing racist remarks at Washington's Smith-Pelly

CHICAGO—Four fans were ejected from United Center on Saturday night for taunting Devante Smith-Pelly as the Capitals’ winger sat in the penalty box.

The fans, according to a team spokesman, yelled “basketball, basketball, basketball” at Smith-Pelly, who is black. Smith-Pelly was in the box for fighting in the third period of an eventual 7-1 loss to the Blackhawks.

The taunts were confirmed by an off-ice official, the spokesman said, and the fans were subsequently removed from the arena.

Smith-Pelly did not speak with reporters after the game but is expected to address the incident at the team’s next media availability. The team is scheduled to practice Sunday at KeyBank Center in Buffalo.

Caps Coach Barry Trotz did not hold back when asked about the fans' comments.

“There’s absolutely no place in the game of hockey or our country for racism,” Trotz said. “I think it’s disgusting, and there’s no place for it. …It just shows ignorance.”

The Blackhawks responded on Twitter with an apology to Smith-Pelly, who is one of roughly 30 black players in the NHL.

February is Hockey is For Everyone month in the NHL.

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3 stars of the game: Caps suffer ugly loss to scuffling Blackhawks

3 stars of the game: Caps suffer ugly loss to scuffling Blackhawks

Just about everything that could go wrong did for the Capitals on Saturday in a 7-1 loss to the Chicago Blackhawks.

The Caps were coming off a strong 5-2 win over the Minnesota Wild on Thursday, but none of that carried over in the trip to Chicago. The Caps took on a Blackhawks team that had lost eight in a row, but Chicago quickly took control in the first period and never looked back.

Washington gave up 21 shots on goal in the first period and found themselves down 3-1 after the opening frame. Things did not get much better from there as they gave up another three goals in the final four minutes of the second.

Here are the three stars of the game.

1. Jonathan Toews: Toews opened up the scoring in the first period with a quick shot from the corner that caught Braden Holtby by surprise.

Later in the first, he recorded an assist as his pass sparked a breakout that led to Brandon Saad's deal that gave Chicago back the lead. The Caps tried to make a game of it in the second period, but Toews intercepted a pass from Brooks Orpik that led to a 2-on-0 with himself and Patrick Kane that Kane netted to give the Blackhawks a 4-1 lead and signaled to everyone that the rout was on. Saturday was only the second three-point night of the season for Toews.

2. Patrick Kane: Toews helped the Blackhawks take control early, but Kane helped provide the knockout punches in the second period. A bad pass from Orpik was intercepted by Toews that led to a 2-on-0 with Kane. Holtby made the initial save on Toews, but Kane was able to knock in the rebound for the goal.

Kane also added an assist on Artem Anisimov's power play goal which extended Chicago's lead to 6-1.

3. Tom Wilson: Before this one got out of hand, it looked like Wilson had erased the tough start for the Caps as he deflected a shot from Matt Niskanen into the net to get Washington on the board.

Saturday's tally was his third goal in two games and his 10th of the season, marking the first time in his career he has reached double digits in goals.