Predicting Washington Capitals' Most Improved Players for 2014-15 Season

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Predicting Washington Capitals' Most Improved Players for 2014-15 Season
Andy Marlin/Getty Images

Despite missing the postseason in 2013-14, the Washington Capitals have remained competitive for the better part of the last decade, and a lot of that has been due to the team's ability to consistently churn out impact players from within. 

Yes, there have been the early first-rounders and surefire standouts like Alex Ovechkin, Nicklas Backstrom and Karl Alzner, but it's the less heralded prospects who blossom into lineup players who make a roster deep enough to compete for the Stanley Cup.

It's true with the Kings, Blackhawks, Bruins and virtually every elite team in the league, and for the Caps to get back into the playoff picture in 2014-15, they'll need big contributions from every corner of the roster. 

With Brooks Orpik and Matt Niskanen in the fold on the back end, the Capitals' top six seems to be somewhat set in stone with Mike Green, John Carlson, Dmitry Orlov and Alzner likely all seeing regular minutes. 

But up front, there are jobs to be won, particularly within the top nine, and for a number of young players, this will be an important opportunity to grow. 

Here's a look at which Capitals will improve most in 2014-15, a season which should be very interesting with Barry Trotz behind the bench for his first year in Washington.

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