Capitals trade Semyon Varlamov to Avalanche, sign Jeff Halpern

      The Capitals sent Varlamov to Colorado for two draft picks.

      After a week of misdirection from both the franchise and their former starting goaltender, the Washington Capitals traded Semyon Varlamov to the Colorado Avalanche on Friday in exchange for draft picks.

      In the past week, it had been rumored that Varlamov was about to sign a contract with a professional team in Russia, and as recently as Thursday, Capitals GM George McPhee said there were no plans to trade him.

      The Capitals are getting Colorado's 2012 1st round draft pick and a conditional 2nd round pick in either 2012 or 2013 in return.

      Varlamov played in just 27 games in 2010-11, going 11-9-5 with a 2.23 goals against average. He battled injures and the emergence of Michal Neuvirth throughout the season.

      The Capitals also announced Friday that they had signed center Jeff Halpern to a one-year contract. Halpern, a former captain of the Capitals, played for Washington from 1999-2006.