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Report: Brendan Morrison won’t be back with Washington Capitals

Montreal Canadiens v Washington Capitals - Game Five

of the Washington Capitals of the Montreal Canadiens in Game Five of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals during the 2010 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs at the Verizon Center on April 23, 2010 in Washington, DC.

Jim McIsaac

The Washington Capitals have decided not to renew No. 2 center Brendan Morrison’s contract for next season, reports Tarik El-Bashir of the Washington Post.

The 34-year-old was signed to a one-year, $1.5 million contract last summer in the hopes he could rediscover the point-producing touch he had as a Canuck. But after a fast start in which he scored nine goals and racked up 14 assists in the Caps’ first 29 games, Morrison faded in the second half and was scratched twice in the playoffs.

“We talked to Brendan last week,” McPhee said. “He’s a first class kid, but we aren’t going to renew him.”

I can’t say this is too surprising. If you cannot score much as a member of the Washington Capitals, chances are your hopes of putting up big numbers (or being particularly relevant in the NHL) are pretty slim. This opens up a roster spot for the Caps to find a more productive second center.

My guess is that Morrison could find a job somewhere else in the league, but he’ll probably need to accept the $1.5 million-type deal he received last season. It’s pretty stunning how rapidly his skills eroded, although perhaps he’s just another guy from those Vancouver Canucks team who is suffering from some residual karmic Todd Bertuzzi stink or something. (See: Naslund, Markus)