Kuznetsov will draw back into the lineup on Saturday.
Kuznetsov was a healthy scratch on Thursday, but he will be back in the lineup tonight vs. the Devils. He will be in for Andre Burakovsky—Barry Trotz indicated he might platoon the two young forwards for awhile.
Kuznetsov will serve as a healthy scratch on Thursday.
Kuznetsov took line rushes on the Capitals second line in practice this morning, but will serve as healthy scratch while Michael Latta moves into the lineup on the fourth line and Alexander Burakovsky to the second line. Kuznetsov has just eight points (2G / 6A) in what has been a disappointing 23 games.
Kuznetsov had recently been bumped up to the second line and it looked like all was going well, but he will sit tonight with Brooks Laich returning to the lineup. He has one goal and five assists in 12 games this season.
Barry Trotz was pleased with Kuznetsov's play on Thursday.
Despite Kuznetsov playing just 11 shifts and totalling only 6:36 TOI, Trotz said "if he keeps going the way he is, he’ll be taking up a lot of ice time." Fellow rookie Andre Burakovsky scored on his fourth career shift and Kuznetsov could be the same kind of player with his skill set.
Kuznetsov will centre the Capitals fourth line to start the season.
There was a ton of preseason hype about Kuznetsov, but he will start his career under Barry Trotz as the fourth line centre. "[Kuz] thinks it's the right spot for him at this moment," said Trotz after practice on Wednesday. He will centre a line with Chris Brown and Liam O'Brien on his wings, so the offence doesn't sound like it will be there in the early going. Fellow rookie Andre Burakovsky will centre the second line; Kuznetsov's projected spot.
Kuznetsov is skating on the fourth line with Jay Beagle and Tom Wilson.
Kuznetsov is expected to make his NHL debut on Monday vs the Penguins. The Caps are likely to ease him into NHL action on the fourth line. Depending on how he performs, he has the skills to become a potential top-6 difference-maker for Washington. He is worth speculative add in keeper leagues, but likely won't have a big impact in standard leagues.
The Capitals have agreed to terms with Evgeny Kuznetsov on a two-year entry-level contract.
The wait is over Capitals fans. After picking Kuznetsov 26th overall in the 2010 NHL draft, they have finally got him to North America. The 21-year-old had eight goals and 13 assists (21 points) in 31 games in the KHL this season. He is high-energy, highly-skilled prospect that can make an early impact if he adjusts well to the NHL game. He will practice with the Capitals on Sunday and likely play on Monday.
And general manager George McPhee hopes the same is true with winger Evgeny Kuznetsov, the Caps' 2010 first-round pick at No. 26 overall.
Kuznetsov established himself as one of the premier prospects in all of hockey last season during his WJHC tournament. Last season he scored 17 goals and 15 assists in 44 games. Expect him to cross the pond next season and keep an eye out for him in keeper leagues as he could eventually replace Alexander Semin.