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Travis Boyd sees Kuznetsov's suspension as opportunity

september 17, 2019
In every loss, there is opportunity. In Evgeny Kuznetsov's suspension, there is opportunity for someone to step up and secure a roster spot.

That someone looking for his chance is 26-year-old Travis Boyd . A long shot to make it to the NHL, he was selected in the 6th round of the 2011 draft. He played four years at the University of Minnesota, and three-plus solid years with the Caps' AHL affiliate, the Hershey Bears. In 2018, Boyd got the call-up to the NHL and was part of the team that ended up winning the Stanley Cup. Boyd did not get his name on the Cup, since he only played eight games during the regular season and one in the playoffs, which was not in the Finals.

Last year, Boyd played 53 games, with 5 goals, 15 assists, and a +6 rating. Boyd has one more year left on his contract at $800k and then he will become an RFA.

The Caps have acquired some bottom-six depth in the offseason with Richard Panik, Brandon Leipsic, and Garnet Hathaway, and gave Carl Hagelin, acquired at the deadline, an extension. Chandler Stephenson is also someone who can compete for a position.

But with Kuznetsov out for the first three games, and Lars Eller likely moving up to his spot, Boyd should get a short stint centering the third-line. And though he might get demoted to the fourth after the suspension ends, he still aims to prove something.

"I think I've proven last year," said Boyd, "that I can play in this league every night and my big thing this year is just trying to establish myself even more and become an everyday player."

"You never want to see a [suspension] happen, especially to a teammate, and I love Kuzy - of the nicest guys in that locker room. But, I mean, from my standpoint, absolutely that's a chance - three games early in the year to hopefully get a chance to show what I can do. And if I get that chance, I've got to take advantage of it."

Source: Washington Post
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