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Caps players whose jerseys your kids should wear - Part 2

By Nicole Weissman

This is part two of a three-part series on Caps players who make especially good role models for kids. These are guys who exhibit a combination of a strong work ethic, activism in the D.C. community, and good sportsmanship. In part one I profiled Brooks Laich, and in this post I’ll be focusing on John Carlson.

Here’s a scary fact: Carlson was born in the ‘90s. He’s practically a kid himself! But who makes a better role model than an individual kids can really relate to?

In case you’ve been living under a rock, this “kid” Carlson is the biggest thing to hit the Caps’ blue line since, well, Mike Green, but before that it had been a long time, ok? Capitals Insider called Carlson “a star in the making.” Bruce Boudreau stated that “Glory follows him,” and Tracee Hamilton recalled he “batted a puck out of the air like King Kong…” I’m not sure what to make of that, but it sounds awesome.

So awesome, in fact, that it’s just the kind of thing D.C. kids could get excited about. Between his obvious star power, his age, his own role models, and his early commitment to community involvement, Carlson is sure to set a positive example for local youth.

Carlson’s dramatic flair on the ice put his jersey on plenty of backs, and his service off the ice put his bobblehead in the hands of blood donors when he attended an Inova Blood Donor Services drive not only to sign autographs, but also to donate blood himself. A bobblehead after only 20 some-odd regular season games? That has to be some kind of record. 

Commitment to community service and sportsmanship this early in Carlson’s career is not altogether surprising given the individuals setting a positive example for him. Ex-Cap Dale Hunter was Carlson’s coach in the Ontario Hockey League. Hunter was famously humble and supportive of his teammates, qualities that earned him the role of team captain. 

Carlson can also look to fellow defenseman Mike Green, who at 24 has already mastered making community service cool. Green has a massive following, including the unofficial fan club “Gang Green,” and puts his popularity to good use. Most recently, Green participated in this summer’s DCPS Beautification Day. 

I’m looking forward to big things from Carlson as he gets himself settled in D.C. more permanently. And with talent like his, it’s a safe bet that McPhee won’t let him go anywhere, so this jersey is a great investment. In fact, buy it a size too big, because this is one role model your kid is unlikely to outgrow.

By Box Seats blogger  | September 28, 2010; 3:46 PM ET
Categories:  Capitals, Nicole Weissman  | Tags:  Capitals, Nicole Weissman  
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Next: Capitals games I'm NOT looking forward to in 2010-11


To be pragmatic, one reason not to get a Laich jersey is that he's only under contract until the end of the year. Great guy yes, but a new jersey is a little pricey to buy to wear for a year unless you don't care that your jersey is potentially skating for another team at the end of the year.

I'd be happy with a Matt Bradley jersey, but haven't pulled the trigger because of the above.

Posted by: Steve_R | September 28, 2010 4:36 PM | Report abuse

Which is why it's best to buy #8 or #19. Those guys are under contract for a hockey eternity. Thank you GMGM and Ted for ensuring those two stick around. Good time to be a Caps fan!

Posted by: tylerdurden1 | September 29, 2010 10:55 PM | Report abuse

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