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Report: Capitals likely to trade Alexander Semin’s rights

Jun 27, 2012, 6:30 PM EDT

Russia's ice hockey team player Alexande Getty Images

A lot has changed for the Washington Capitals in the last few days, but the biggest alterations sent mixed signals about Alexander Semin‘s future with the team. Bringing in a former offensive great in Adam Oates as the new coach and adding Mike Ribeiro‘s splendid passing skills gave some late reason for hope. Yet seeing Dennis Wideman scuttled off dampens that hope and Darren Dreger reports that Semin’s days are still almost certainly numbered.

“Far from news-breaking, but good possibility the Capitals trade Alex Semin‘s rights.”

On one hand, that seems like a foregone conclusion. Yet now that the Capitals finally have their long-sought-after second center in Ribeiro, I must admit a slight touch of sadness. It would have been intriguing to watch the Capitals roll with two duos (Alex OvechkinNicklas Backstrom, Ribeiro-Semin) that could evoke Miracle’s “pass, shoot, score” mantra like few in the NHL.

Still, it seems pretty obvious that the Caps lost their patience with a winger who typified the “mercurial” and “enigmatic” labels often attached to Russian scorers.

Whether it’s by trade or free agency, Washington can replace some of the “oomph” lost by jettisoning Semin, although some of us will wonder what could have been.

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