Washington traded veterans Joe Juneau, Tom Chorske, Dale Hunter and Craig Berube and the only body they received back was highly touted Sabres prospect Alexei Tezikov. These trades opens up four roster spots which the Caps filled by recalling forwards Matt Herr, Benoit Gratton, Trevor Halverson, and defenseman Steve Poapst. All four had spent various time split between the Portland Pirates and the Caps this season.
On March 28, Washington also called up defensemen Patrick Bolieau from Indianapolis of the IHL. All five call up have been playing since they were brought up so the Caps are now a much younger a very inexperience hockey team.
Tezikov was assigned to Cincinnati of the IHL. Not clear why they would send him to the I instead of the Portland (AHL), though maybe the presence of the heavy number of Chicago prospects in Portland may have played a part in the decision.
In other Caps news; Washington announced they have signed defenseman Dean Stork. Dean played this past year at the University of Massachusetts-Amherst. A junior who recently completed his third collegiate season, helping the team to a 12-21-2 overall record.
Dean is a six-foot-three inch, 205-pound native of Penticton, British Columbia, Stork broke the University of Massachusetts Division I record this year for goals in a season by a defenseman with nine. He led the Minutemen defensive corps in scoring and finished third overall on the team in scoring (16 points). Stork, the Minutemen team captain, finished the 1998-99 season with 9 goals, 7 assists and 44 penalty minutes, in 34 games. Five of his nine goals have come on the power play.
Washington also announced that they have signed another collegiate player, Jeff Halpern, of Princeton has signed.
Jeff is from the DC area. Last season, his senior season at Princton, was the team captain. He recorded 22 goals and 22 assists in 33 games this season.
He is a six-foot, 195 pound forward, Halpern was named to his second consecutive All-Ivy 1st Team honors this season. His 44 points led Princeton in scoring this season, helping the Tigers to a 20-12-2 finish in the Eastern College Athletic Conference. Nominated this season for the Hobey Baker Award (given annually to the top U.S. college player), he led the ECAC in power-play points (26) and was tied for the conference lead in power-play goals, with 10.
Halpern finished his collegiate career as Princeton’s third all-time leader in points and assists. Last season, with 46 points, Halpern led the ECAC in points and established a school record for most goals in a season (28).
A native of Potomac, Maryland, Halpern started his hockey career playing for the Montgomery Youth Hockey League (Maryland). He was also a member of the ‘Little Capitals’ from 1986-1994 and attended high school at St. Paul’s Prep School in Concord, New Hampshire.