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On the other side of the Atlantic, the IIHF tournaments such as the World Junior Championships are a big freaking deal. Consider last year, when Caps prospect Filip Forsberg and his Team Sweden teammates defeated Russia 1-0 in overtime of the Gold Medal Game. When the team returned to Sweden, they were treated as heroes.

With attention comes fame, and with fame comes hilarious endorsement deals! Which is why Forsberg and 2012 WJC golden goal-scorer Mika Zibanejad play a prominent role in a Swedish advertising campaign for the Danish milk company, Cocio. Anaheim Ducks defenseman Hampus Lindholm, a top 10 pick in this past year’s draft, also participates.

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2012 Capitals NHL Draft Preview: Defensemen

[Editor’s note: Here comes installment number three of our draft coverage. Part 1 featured Centers, and Part 2 was all about the wings.]

The Capitals have a solid young core on the blueline that should last for some more time. That’s the result of successful work by McPhee and his staff at the last few NHL drafts. Of the seven defensemen likely returning, five of them were drafted by the Capitals, and all are 25 or younger. The prospect pool at the back end looks pretty decent as well with the acquisitions of promising players like Tomas Kundratek, Kevin Marshall, and Cameron Schilling, as well as the steady development of stay-at-home defenseman Patrick Wey in the NCAA. At the same time, with the graduation of Dmitry Orlov, the prospect list now lacks top-end potential. If the Caps feel like they need to strengthen their future top 4, they may look for a defenseman in the first round, especially since this draft is considered deep in that position.

In their current D-corps line-up, the Caps have John Carlson (RFA), Karl Alzner, Mike Green (RFA), Roman Hamrlik, Dmitry Orlov, Jeff Schultz, and John Erskine. Among the prospects, the standouts are Patrick Wey, Tomas Kundratek, Kevin Marshall, Brett Flemming, and Cameron Schilling.

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