For the first time since training camp opened last week, the Capitals’ veterans were consolidated into one group. As a result, we got our first peek into the coaching staff's early thoughts on forward combinations and defensive pairs.
Here’s how the forwards lined up for Thursday morning's practice:
It’s important to note that Wilson did not practice due to a minor upper body ailment. He did, however, do a no-pucks conditioning skate before the team’s practice. He'll eventually rejoin the group and displace someone currently in the lineup.
It would also seem to me that most of the tinkering will probably happen on the right side of the above lines.
Here were the D-pairs:
Orlov skated with Niskanen on Wednesday, so the top-4 is a work in progress. Associate coach Todd Reirden has also said that he liked how Orlov plays with Orpik, so that's something else to keep an eye on in the coming days.
The goalies on Thursday were Joe Cannata and Vitek Vanecek. They, obviously, are placeholders for Holtby and Grubauer, who are still at the World Cup.
As for the lines and pairs, a lot can change between now and Oct. 13. But it would seem that an outline has been put on paper.