Michal Neuvirth to start Capitals’ opener in goal against Carolina

ARLINGTON, Va. – Michal Neuvirth will be the surprise starter in goal for the Washington Capitals in their season opener against Carolina.

Free-agent signing Tomas Vokoun is expected to be the team’s No. 1 goalie this season, but Neuvirth said Friday coaches were impressed with his performance in training camp and preseason.

The news was revealed when Vokoun was asked if he was nervous for the opener. He said he wasn’t nervous—because he wasn’t playing Saturday. He added he expects to play in the second game Monday against Tampa Bay.

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Coach Bruce Boudreau hadn’t planned for the word to leak out. Asked why he’s giving Neuvirth the start, the coach said he wasn’t ready to comment.