Capitals Lockout Gang down to four

Capitals Lockout Gang down to four
October 19, 2012, 1:00 pm
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The Capitals Lockout Gang started at about a dozen strong back on Sept. 17.

But as hopes of a new Collective Bargaining Agreement diminish with each passing day, so do the number of Capitals who have spent every weekday morning skating at Kettler Capitals Iceplex.

With Nicklas Backstrom reuniting with Alex Ovechkin as the newest member of the KHL’s Dynamo Moscow and Matt Hendricks returning to his home in Minnesota, the Lockout Gang was down to four on Friday – forwards Jason Chimera and Jay Beagle and defensemen Mike Green and John Carlson.

“Every person that goes it’s more money out of our pockets,” Chimera said with a laugh.  “We’re scrounging meal money together to get some ice. And it’s not cheap ice here in Arlington [$360 an hour].”

Chimera said he’s talked to some former teammates in Columbus and is considering skating there for a few days next week. If not, he may take a drive to Philadelphia, where a handful of locked-out Flyers are skating in Voorhees, N.J.

“With four guys out here you’re certainly not getting better,” he said. “Some guys are looking for some different options. Everyone is so different. Some guys have no kids, some guys have kids, some guys are in places where a lot of NHLers are and they’ve got good skates going, too.”

Mike Ribeiro is one of the other Capitals still living in the area and he’s been skating with his son’s hockey team.

Beagle said he and Carlson plan on using the ice at Kettler through at least next week, when they are scheduled to work with Jeff Halpern’s power skating coach, Wendy Marco.

“Six guys, three guys, it doesn’t make much difference,” Beagle said. “We wanted to try it out today and see how the skate would go. I actually thought it was a little better just because we didn’t play 3-on-3 or 2-on-2 at the end. Me and Hendy aren’t big fans of the 3-on-3 or the 2-on-2 half ice. It gets a little old.”

Beagle, who is from Calgary, said he’s staying in the area because he’s actually encouraged by the progress made by the owners and players this week, even though both sides failed to accept each other’s proposals.

“If talks weren’t going on I’d probably go back to Calgary,” Beagle said. “But with what happened this week it kind of makes you hopeful again. I hopefully think something’s going to get done soon. It’s a far way to go all the way back to Calgary for maybe a week, maybe two weeks and come back.”