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Washington Capitals: Could a Vancouver Goalie be Heading to D.C.?

VANCOUVER, CANADA - JANUARY 30: Roberto Luongo #1 of the Vancouver Canucks stretches out a pad to make a save against the Colorado Avalanche during the first period in NHL action on January 30, 2013 at Rogers Arena in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.  (Photo by Rich Lam/Getty Images)
Rich Lam/Getty Images
Barry LeonardAnalyst IIIFebruary 3, 2013

The Washington Capitals are in the midst of a miserable start to the 2013 season. After a 6-3 loss to the Pittsburgh Penguins on Sunday, the Capitals have just five points on the year.

Talks about major changes are sure to heat up in Washington, especially after a visitor was spotted in the arena.

Sunday's game was broadcast on NBC as a national telecast and, in the third period, there was a cutaway to one of the boxes inside Verizon center. Viewers saw the face of Vancouver Canucks general manager Mike Gillis, who was there on a visit for scouting purposes.

It's no secret that Vancouver has two quality goaltenders and has been shopping around Roberto Luongo. However, the veteran netminder has made that difficult with his recent play. Luongo is 2-0 on the year with a stellar 1.46 goals-against average.

Cory Schneider, who entered the year as the staring Canucks goalie, has struggled to start the year, posting a record of 2-2 with a subpar 3.13 GAA. While the start could be concerning, he proved last year that he is capable of being a starting goalie in the NHL. In the 2011-12 season, Schneider won 20 games and finished with a 1.96 GAA.

The Capitals have not played well to start the season and have several issues plaguing the team, including poor defense. As a result, both Capitals goalies—Braden Holtby and Michal Neuvirth—have struggled.

A clear No. 1 goalie could be just what the doctor ordered for the Caps, as it's hard to get into a rhythm when the goalies are constantly changed. Washington has had seven guys start in net since 2007 and has yet to find the consistency that is needed to win a Stanley Cup.

While there could be many reasons that Gillis was on a scouting trip in Washington, one has to think that a trade involving the two teams isn't out of the realm of possibility, as the Capitals could be looking for anything to give the team a spark.

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