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Nabokov back in goal, Reese in for Staios vs. Caps

Ryan Smyth #94 of the Edmonton Oilers cuts

Ryan Smyth #94 of the Edmonton Oilers cuts through the crease in front of Evgeni Nabokov #20 of the New York Islanders at the Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum. (Dec. 31, 2011) Credit: Getty Images

Evgeni Nabokov got yesterday off after starting 11 straight games in goal, and he's back in tonight against the Capitals in Washington.

Al Montoya is "close," according to Jack Capuano -- close enough to be backing up Nabokov tonight -- but Capuano is going back to Nabokov, who was 5-6-0 in those 11 straight starts, allowing 30 goals over that span.

Steve Staios will sit out tonight to rest, with Dylan Reese getting his first action in since being called up 11 days ago. Staios, 38, is the oldest defenseman on the squad and had been playing less that 13 minutes in each of the last three games, and just 10:40 yesterday.

The Caps are wrapping up a four-game homestand having won the previous three games, each by one goal. The Caps are 17-5-1 at the Verizon Center and have won seven straight at home. They are 12-8-1 under Dale Hunter and have won seven of nine.

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