Teams seeking a supplemental scorer should call Washington Capitals general manager George McPhee ASAP.
Winger Mike Knuble, 39, was a healthy scratch for consecutive games this week for the Capitals.
“It’s very humbling,” Knuble told the Washington Post. “It takes you back to when you were a young player trying to find your way. You definitely don’t like it; you hate it as a player. You can’t walk around and pout, though, and be miserable about it. It’s not the first time it’s happened to somebody, it won’t be the last time.”
His singular skill has been his ability to convert garbage goals around the net, but he hasn’t scored in his last 27 games. The Post calculated that he has converted just 7 percent of his scoring chances this season.
“I can’t say that I’ve played consistently well enough. I thought I played well in January, thought I had a few bad breaks -- hit the post a couple times consecutively,” Knuble told the Post. “Bottom line is you didn’t finish, that didn’t go in for you. A little bit of coulda, shoulda, woulda. There’s still a lot of time in the season and lot of games left. Dale’s got to put the best lineup he can out there, what he feels the best gives the team best chance to win.”
Coach Dale Hunter praised Knuble’s character, but noted that the veteran hasn’t been able to keep up.
“He’s a leader, so it’s always tough,” Hunter told the Post. “You need leadership in the room It’s just one of those things. We thought it was necessary at the time to add more speed and we’ll miss his leadership, but it gives other people a chance to become more vocal in the dressing room.”
Knuble scored 29 and 24 goals the previous two seasons, so another team may be willing to team him with a couple of playmakers to see if he can regain his touch.