Caps defenseman Taylor Chorney said he’s been told to prepare as if he’s playing in tonight’s Game 2 against the Pittsburgh Penguins, likely in place of Dmitry Orlov, who was benched after being on the ice for a goal in Game 1 Thursday night.
“They told me to be prepared as if I’m going to be playing,” Chorney said. "We’ll just see how it goes.”
Defenseman Karl Alzner did not participate in the team’s morning skate but Caps coach Barry Trotz said everyone is available to play tonight when the Caps try to take a 2-0 lead in the series.
“Watch warmups and you’ll see what we’re doing,” Trotz said.
Chorney played for the Penguins last season and earned a contract with the Capitals last summer. In 55 games this season Chorney, 29, recorded one goal, five assists and was a plus-8.
“I don’t know if you call it an advantage but I think you’re familiar with some of them,” Chorney said of the Penguins.
Chorney is expected to play on a third pairing with Nate Schmidt.
The Capitals lost both games that Chorney has played in the post-season. He replaced Brooks Orpik (upper body injury) in Games 4 and 5 against the Flyers in Round 1 before he was replaced by Mike Weber.
Trotz said Chorney’s play had nothing to do with his removal from the lineup for Game 6 against Philadelphia, indicating he made the move for Weber’s physicality.
Orlov has played in all 89 games for the Caps this season but Caps coach Barry Trotz said his leash is shorter with players in the playoffs than in the regular season.
“Playoffs, everything is about short-term memory and move forward,” Trotz said. “He’s done a lot of good things.”