The Capitals reassigned goalie Zach Fucale to their AHL affiliate Hershey Bears on Tuesday, the team announced. Fucale started each of the last two games for Washington and took the loss in both, though Saturday’s 3-2 defeat to the Minnesota Wild was hardly the fault of the rookie.
With Vitek Vanecek battling a non-COVID illness, the Capitals called up the 26-year-old Fucale to be Ilya Samsonov’s understudy for a few games. However, Samsonov allowed four goals in back-to-back starts, which prompted head coach Peter Laviolette to lift him for Fucale midway through Friday’s game against the St. Louis Blues.
Fucale then started the next two games, allowing just one goal against the Wild — though another managed to sneak through on an own-goal with Fucale off the ice — before the Boston Bruins chased him with four goals in the first two periods.
Now, Vanecek is healthy and Samsonov has been given a few days off to get right, so Fucale heads back down to the AHL. He’ll report to Hershey sporting a 1-1-1 NHL record with a .924 save percentage and a goals-against average of just 1.75.