Caps defenseman out after puck hits him in eye

Defenseman Tom Poti will miss Game 7 of the Washington Capitals’
first-round playoff series against the Montreal Canadiens on
Wednesday night after getting hit in the eye by a puck.

“It’s a pretty significant injury,” Capitals coach Bruce
Boudreau said Tuesday, “so he’s definitely out for tomorrow’s
game.”

If the Capitals stay in the playoffs by winning Wednesday,
Poti still would be sidelined.

“It could be two to three weeks. It could be longer,”
Boudreau said.

Left without Poti, a veteran with a team-best plus-9 rating
in this series, the Capitals recalled defenseman Karl Alzner from
Hershey of the American Hockey League.

Poti was hurt in Montreal’s 4-1 home victory over Washington
in Game 6 on Monday night. He is tied for the team lead with four
assists this postseason, and he and rookie John Carlson have formed
Washington’s top defensive pairing against the Canadiens.

Alzner had five assists in 21 regular-season games with the
Capitals this season.

Boudreau also said he has decided on a goalie for Game 7, but
he wouldn’t announce a starter. It is expected he will stay with
Semyon Varlamov, who replaced Jose Theodore in the first period of
Game 2 and has started every game since.