Semin demoted to fourth line

According to reports from Capitals practice at Madison Square Garden Sunday, Alexander Semin has been demoted to the team's fourth line.

The 28-year-old winger skated on a line with veteran Mike Knuble and center Keith Aucoin following a rough Game 1 performance on Saturday night.

Semin took two boneheaded penalties in the Caps' 3-1 loss to the Rangers -- a slashing penalty in the first and a tripping penalty in the third.

Caps coach Dale Hunter sending a message?

According to NHL.com's Dave Lozo, Hunter replied: "Nope, just mixing the lines up."

Meanwhile, Alex Ovechkin sounded confident with his opportunities in Game 1 despite being held off the scoresheet. Rangers' shutdown pair Ryan McDonagh and Dan Girardi limited the Russian superstar to only one shot on goal, although he said he had more room to operate compared to the Capitals' first-round series against the Bruins.

"I had more time and space than when we played against Boston, 100 percent," Ovechkin told reporters. "My line has to be better in the neutral zone to create opportunities for me and Brooksie and Brouwer."