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Posted at 4:19 PM ET, 01/25/2011

All Star captains discuss strategy for draft selection

By Katie Carrera

The newest wrinkle to the NHL All Star Weekend is the addition of the fantasy-style draft that allows three players from each team, captain and two alternate captains, to pick teams as if they were out on a pond as kids again. With the draft only a few days away, the players doing the choosing are starting to consider strategies for assembling their teams.

The draft takes place Friday at 8 p.m. and will be televised on Versus, with a pre-draft coin flip determining who will have the first selection overall. From lobbying for teammates, siblings or players that they'd simply like to join forces with while the selection process is all in fun there is some logic to it.

"Obviously you have to have some rhyme or reason in what you're doing, but...there's a ton of talent there and not really any bad picks," captain Eric Staal said during a conference call with reporters. "Everyone is a great player and deserves to be there. So, you know, obviously goal scoring is a premium in the All Star Game, and goalkeeping, too, and defense. So there's no wrong way to go about it I don't think. You know, we are going to enjoy it, the three of us getting together and trying to figure out a game plan and making our pick."

There are only a few rules that govern the selection process -- all six goaltenders must be selected by round six and all defensemen must be gone by the 15th round -- which has increased speculation as to who could be the top pick. One possible option is Hurricanes goaltender Cam Ward, in an effort to either divide or unite the home crowd in Raleigh.

"We'll see," Nicklas Lidstrom, captain of the other squad, said of his strategy. "I know [Staal] wants Cam on his team being in front of the home crowd and everything. So it might be a good strategy to take him and maybe take the crowd out of it and get the crowd on our side a little bit. But that's another thing that we'll have fun with and talk amongst ourselves there what we're going to do."

While all players are all stars, there is one position that no one really wants to be in and that's the last pick in the entire draft. Mike Green, who is an alternate captain on Staal's team, is quite pleased he won't be in that position.

"That was my worst fear being picked last," Green said. "At least I don't have to worry about that now."

By Katie Carrera  | January 25, 2011; 4:19 PM ET
Categories:  All-Star Game  
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the Caps at midseason and college hoops

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Comments

To be honest there are only two things I care about in this whole thing. Can we finally see a game where the Sedins play against each other and who gets picked last. Other then that I couldn't care less. If there was any sporting event I cared about at all I wouldn't watch but I couldn't care less about the Pro Bowl and can't watch the NBA so I might watch just because there isn't anything else.

Posted by: icehammer97 | January 25, 2011 4:32 PM | Report abuse

Look guys the hardest professional sport to scout and draft in is the NHL hands down. I don't subscribe to the majority of critisizm of GMGM's drafting b/c you can say that about every single GM in the NHL. I don't have the time (as I've done it before) but trust me, every single GM makes mistakes and some find a needle in a haystack. You just flat don't know how a 17 or 18yr old KID is going to develope.

People here are just too tunnel visioned into the Caps but trust me every GM has made mistakes drafting. Anybody remember Pat Falloon being #1 overall? Any guesses who was taken after him? You just have to look at the big picture. Instead of saying, hey the Caps took player "x" at the 25th pick instead of player "y" so GMGM sucks. Well then doesn't that mean that the previous 24 GM's that didn't draft player "y" are idiots then too? That's where I'm coming from.

There's a reason why GMGM was voted (by his peers) as executive of the year. It wasn't because he's terrible at building a contending team.

Posted by: pokerface1208 | January 25, 2011 4:47 PM | Report abuse

@ThePat

Poti's contract is absolutely untradeable. It was a horrible mistake by McPhee.

Trades:

Semin to LA for Simmonds, Hickey, 2011 1st Rounder (Very close to the renatl price that NJ paid for Kovalchuk last year)

After that:

Eakin/Holtby, Fehr, 2011 1st rounder to Ottawa for Fisher

And then, anything else we have (Minus Kuznetsov) for someone to play on line 1 with Nicky and OV. Penner? Moulson? Tanguay? Suggestions?

McPhee has the ability, (even with the Poti debacle) a nice facelift.

Posted by: underpants2 | January 25, 2011 4:47 PM | Report abuse

People here are just too tunnel visioned into the Caps but trust me every GM has made mistakes drafting. Anybody remember Pat Falloon being #1 overall? Any guesses who was taken after him? You just have to look at the big picture. Instead of saying, hey the Caps took player "x" at the 25th pick instead of player "y" so GMGM sucks. Well then doesn't that mean that the previous 24 GM's that didn't draft player "y" are idiots then too? That's where I'm coming from.

There's a reason why GMGM was voted (by his peers) as executive of the year. It wasn't because he's terrible at building a contending team.


Posted by: pokerface1208

I think Falloon was 2, Lindros was 1.

Posted by: underpants2 | January 25, 2011 4:51 PM | Report abuse

Did anyone read the tidbits from Sens Town blog via Yahoo!?

"Mike Fisher does not have a no movement clause as most seem to believe. He does however have a limited no trade clause, which means he may submit a list of 5 teams he will not accept a trade to. So there's hope we might be able to move him."

So I guess as long as the Caps are not on the 'no-no list', GMGM has a chance. GMGM will probably bring in someone we have never heard of, though.

http://www.senstown.com/2011/01/what-we-learned-today.html


Posted by: nicety251 | January 25, 2011 5:08 PM | Report abuse

@nicety251

I saw that. If that is true, that may be good or may be bad from a Caps perspective.

If he would've been willing to come to DC anyways then having a NMC would have limited the competition for his services.

But I agree that GMGM will probably end up making a trade for someone that wasn't even spoken of on here. As he usually does.

I mean, who was the last player GMGM traded for that was a player of discussion beforehand as a guy people thought the Caps should target.

Posted by: sgm3 | January 25, 2011 5:13 PM | Report abuse

He pointed out how he personally felt upon getting on the ice. That he would much rather be on the ice versus a guy like Orr, Boogard, Goddard or DJK than a player like Clutterbuck or Tootoo.

His mindset is important because he expresses something that many people have thought, players are not concerned about the heavyweight enforcers because all they do is fight the other heavyweight enforcers. An enforcers presence on the ice doesn't effect how they play the game at all. If anything it makes them excited to play because they know there will be more open ice due to the usual lack of speed of a heavyweight.

Posted by: sgm3 |


lol, they get excited to play because they get to face a team with heavyweights?

you truly are a gem.

You should go talk to players sometimes and see how they feel about having an effective heavyweight on their team. Then you wouldn't have to speculate anymore about how excited they get to face teams who carry some tough guys. I'm being serious.

Posted by: cstanton1 | January 25, 2011 5:13 PM | Report abuse

@sgm3

I think Spezza name has come up on this site but the blog states that he just skated today after being out for weeks. We would want someone to come in and hit the ground skating.

I have to look up most of the guys that everyone mentions to try to gauge an opinion for myself.

Posted by: nicety251 | January 25, 2011 5:20 PM | Report abuse

But I agree that GMGM will probably end up making a trade for someone that wasn't even spoken of on here. As he usually does.

I mean, who was the last player GMGM traded for that was a player of discussion beforehand as a guy people thought the Caps should target.

Posted by: sgm3

Trevor Linden and Jason Marshall. Those were two names who were bandied about who actually ended up here.

Posted by: cstanton1 | January 25, 2011 5:26 PM | Report abuse

There's a reason why GMGM was voted (by his peers) as executive of the year. It wasn't because he's terrible at building a contending team.

--poker--

I think its a conspiracy by the other GMs to make Ted think that McPhee is better than he really is so he keeps him employed.

Posted by: cstanton1 | January 25, 2011 5:29 PM | Report abuse

Think he'll win GM of the year again? I think he should. He locked up Tom Poti before anyone else could make a FA play for him. Brilliant.

Posted by: cstanton1 | January 25, 2011 5:30 PM | Report abuse

i've seen the fehr picked before getzlaf as an example of gmgm's failings.
he is comparable to half a dozen other forwards taken around him
jessiman (12)
nilsson (15)
pouliot (22)
stewart (25)
tambellini (27)
eaves (29)

what surprises me is how this guy was passed on 244 times
http://hockeydb.com/ihdb/stats/pdisplay.php?pid=62465

drafting the top 3 or 4 players is more often a 'no brainer' than not
figuring out what an 18 yr old might turn into is a whole lot easier to determine once they are 21 - 23 yrs old

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | January 25, 2011 5:32 PM | Report abuse

@cstanton1

This is what the FORMER PLAYER said in his article, not me. Maybe you should start reading what the former players say instead of assuming you know:

"For me, I knew there was a zero percent chance that I would ever end up in a fight against our opponent's heavyweight, so when that guy was out there, it was like being on a powerplay. Most hired goons can't play (especially at the lower levels), so unless they were the type to use cheap stickwork, they were irrelevant to me.

Think of a guy like Nashville Predators winger Jordan Tootoo - as a skill guy, would I rather take a shift against him or George Parros(notes) of the Anaheim Ducks? It's a no-brainer. I'm not going to have to fight Parros, but I'm sure as hell not exempt from Tootoo's wrath."

Posted by: sgm3 | January 25, 2011 5:35 PM | Report abuse

Look guys the hardest professional sport to scout and draft in is the NHL hands down.
-------------------------------------------------------------------

I don't believe that's true. I think baseball is just as hard or even harder because you're dealing with a lot more prospects who are just as young and in the case of most Latin prospects, even younger.

Posted by: joek443 | January 25, 2011 5:49 PM | Report abuse

Just like Eklund's blog, you can pretty much rest assured if a player is discussed on CI, there is 0% chance GMGM will make a deal for him. Therefore I would say Fisher will not be coming to the DC area as a Cap. GMGM will get somebody from Phoenix or somewhere, who has "potential" and had good stats in the minors. In fairness, I have to admit GMGM isn't always wrong however, I think one of his best moves was for an aging Federov who Columbus was looking to move.

Posted by: kcbrichmond | January 25, 2011 5:54 PM | Report abuse

So this Nabakov situation is ridiculous! He had to know he was going to get picked up.

Why not suck it up and play the rest of the season with the Isles...if he does a decent job he can have a shot at a good team next season.

As it is now, he is going to loose this season AND next season since the Isles will probably ask the NHL to put a toll and have his contract start next season.

Posted by: capscoach | January 25, 2011 6:02 PM | Report abuse

So this Nabakov situation is ridiculous! He had to know he was going to get picked up.

Why not suck it up and play the rest of the season with the Isles...if he does a decent job he can have a shot at a good team next season.

As it is now, he is going to loose this season AND next season since the Isles will probably ask the NHL to put a toll and have his contract start next season.

Posted by: capscoach

If he prefers not to play than play with the Islanders then that is his choice and I have no problem with it.

Posted by: sgm3 | January 25, 2011 6:18 PM | Report abuse

Did people see this article comparing hitters and fighters(it is written by a former player).....vermontcaps may not want to read it because it would support benching DJK.

Posted by: sgm3 | January 25, 2011 3:49 PM | Report abuse

I started reading it and I couldn't help but laugh...Justin Bourne?? Because I didn't finish the article, I'm not sure why you labeled good'ole J.B.a "former player." His opinion matters why?

But then again, sgm3, you like to take the words of players as the Gospel itself. Mike Commodore, anyone?

I'll leave it at that, as cstanton seems to have already addressed the issue...THAT A BOY, CSTANT!

Posted by: vermontcaps | January 25, 2011 6:18 PM | Report abuse

Think of a guy like Nashville Predators winger Jordan Tootoo - as a skill guy, would I rather take a shift against him or George Parros(notes) of the Anaheim Ducks? It's a no-brainer. I'm not going to have to fight Parros, but I'm sure as hell not exempt from Tootoo's wrath."

Posted by: sgm3 |


There are many shades of gray in there. If what the article said was true, then all "fighters" would be out of a job, would they not? I mean, why are fighters even employed if all you need are guys who can hit like Tootoo? Why did McPhee go out and initially get Brashear? Or DJ?

Policing the ice is still part of the value that guys like Orr and his counterparts bring to their team. And its a role that the "hitters" you are referring to cannot bring to the table. Both traits have value.

For my money, a guy like Shawn Thornton or Chris Neil are the best options to have because they incorporate the best of both worlds. But I still see value in having players like Tootoo AND players like Orr on the same team. The Rags, Flyers, and Pens (3 smart and fairly successful teams) employ hitters and fighters. Why do they do it SGM? They have middleweights like Prust, Carcillo,and Asham, they also carry a slew of hitters who don't necessarily fight well, and they have fighters who aren't prolific hitters.

explain all that.

Posted by: cstanton1 | January 25, 2011 6:25 PM | Report abuse

you like to take the words of players as the Gospel itself.

Posted by: vermontcaps | January 25, 2011 6:18 PM

if i recall - more than a few here though umberger was spot on with his comments - weren't you one of those?

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | January 25, 2011 6:32 PM | Report abuse

if i recall - more than a few here though umberger was spot on with his comments - weren't you one of those?

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | January 25, 2011 6:32 PM | Report abuse

I'm not sure how Umberger stating the obvious is akin to a nobody devaluing the oldest, most-respected aspect of hockey since the game began.

Posted by: vermontcaps | January 25, 2011 6:40 PM | Report abuse

I agree that baseball is tougher to draft but it is close.

As for Nabby. He might have thought he could get picked up but he probably figured it would be a team like SJ or maybe the Habs, LA, or Hawks. Not Detroit but still at least in the race for the playoffs so not out of the question and could use a solid #2 goalie who could play 10-15 games the rest of the season and win at least 6-10 or them. Right now the Canes are on pace to finish 8th with 90.3 points. To get to that number the Isles would have to go 26-7-1 or similar. They are not making the playoffs period. Everyone was saying they didn't think Nabby would make it through waivers but almost everyones reaction to it being NY who took him was WHAT?!?! What I think could end up happening is in the last few weeks he decideds to show up just long enough that NY can not hold him to the contract next year and he will become a FA at the end of the year and someone will take him at next to nothing as a backup.

Posted by: icehammer97 | January 25, 2011 6:45 PM | Report abuse

Because we like sharing articles here, here's a letter to the editor that is in the latest edition of The Hockey news:

"....What happened to hockey fans? I've been a diehard fan my entire life and it turns my stomach when I hear about ways to make the game "safer." That's blasphemy.

What sets hockey apart from other sports is the never-say-die aspect of it, with the fighting, hitting, and sticks and pucks to the face. And you rarely, if ever, hear the players complain about that. So why do some fans feel the need to intervene?

Fighting defines hockey. Why is there even an instigator rule? So that soccer moms can go to sleep at night? Hockey is the toughest sport out there, so leave it alone before it loses that claim.....Haliburton, Ont."

So, I've gotta ask: Hey hunterforcoach, anychance you're in Haliburton, Ont.?? :)

Posted by: vermontcaps | January 25, 2011 6:56 PM | Report abuse

@underpants2:
Falloon was indeed #2 that year!
http://www.hockeydb.com/ihdb/draft/nhl1991e.html


@nicety251L:
per capgeek, "Limited NTC (2010-11 through 2012-13; can submit 10-team no-trade list)"

so yes, he is acquirable... but at what cost?

Perreault, 1st, prospect?? depends on the prospect to me...

Posted by: FrankM73 | January 25, 2011 7:02 PM | Report abuse

icehammer: Once they suspend him, I don't know if he can just "show up when he wants." It depends on the CBA. I recall this receiver on the Chargers, Jackson I think, didn't report, even though he had a valid contract, but then came in at week 9 or so because that was the last date to get credit for his season.

I have read most of the CBA but not all of it. Actually, I think this particular clause was added later to keep guys like Neidermeyer from just showing up Feb 15th every year and collecting like $2M for six weeks pay + Playoffs. So the official UFA signing period starts 1 July and ends maybe in December.

Nabby's agent should have explained all this. He is walking out on a valid contract is the bottom line. UFAs who sign after the final date must go through waivers and he knew it.

Posted by: tominsocal1 | January 25, 2011 7:04 PM | Report abuse

I just ran some numbers on the Caps since the losing streak ended. How's the new system working?

In the last 17 games, 9W, 2L, 5OL. 2.4 GF, 1.9 GA.

In the last 17 games against playoff teams (top 8 either conference): 2W, 2L, 4OL 1.6 GF, 2.1 GA


Good thing we've had a weak schedule in the last 17 games.

Posted by: hockeydad | January 25, 2011 7:05 PM | Report abuse

@tom I am not sure if there is any set date for when he would have to report by but I am sure his agent knows if there is one when it is and if Nabby wants to play next year he will report then if the Isles haven't put him back on waivers by then. Also it is not the date he came back that is why he was on waivers it is because he played in another league this year. That is why if Forsberg comes back he won't have to clear waiver he can be signed directly. It is a way the NHL has used to try and keep guys from leaving for the KHL.

My question is if you are the Isles do you want him to come now? He has basicly said I would rather not play then play for you. If you were Garth Snow would you even want him in that locker room? Would you want any doubt being placed in the mind of Tavares or any of their other young guys?

Posted by: icehammer97 | January 25, 2011 7:28 PM | Report abuse

By the way I think Eklund has a good thought, if the Isles really want a goalie and feel they need one they should go get Emery. He has been working out and is looking for any chance he can get and wouldn't have to clear waivers so if he is game, which it seems like he would be, sign him and let Nabby go. Each day Nabby is in the news in doesn't just make him look bad it makes you look bad too.

Posted by: icehammer97 | January 25, 2011 7:33 PM | Report abuse

Whoever the IDIOT is that said to trade Holtby has definately out-TRUMPED anything stupid that I have said on this board.

Holtby is:

1) Our only healthy goalie
2) Has stayed healthy through 2 STRAIGHT games

3) is only 21
4) is canadian
5) is better than Nervous NOW...


On the block:

Eakin or even Kuzen (bc who knows when he will come)
Neuvirth
Fehr (like who will want this bum...but a very nice guy off the ice)
SEMIN (no brainer)
B. Gordon
DJK (see Fehr)
POTI (see Fehr)
MP

I would even move Chimera right now...he looks like a champ...

Untouchables...

1) Holtby
2) Ovie (because nobody can actually lift him to move him)
3) Backstrom (noone is gullible enough to think that is the REAL Nick Backstrom)
3a) M JOhansson
4) Carlson
5) Alzner
6) Erskine (for you Vermont!!!)
7) Green
8) Schultz (50/50 on this one)
9) Beagle
10) Steckel (wins faceoffs and doesn't get hurt)
11)Hendricks (probably should be 5 behind Carlson)
12) Bradley
13) A Gordon

Posted by: SoaringCaps | January 25, 2011 7:34 PM | Report abuse

ftr, Umberger stole my shtick.

I was screaming that Bruce's offense first defense be damned philosophy was doomed from the start. Umberger just rode my coattails :)

also ftr, i can find a dozen examples of players who have made specific mention of how having a true heavy on the team is a real boost.

Hell, I'm sure at least 3 current Caps said that when we got DJ.

Dale Hunter said that getting Alan May took a lot of pressure off his own shoulders and the team's when we first acquired May. Horse's mouth baby. And Alan May said that getting John Kordic took some pressure off his own shoulders. And you could see the effect of Kordic on the ice. His Caps teammates played 15 lbs bigger. Even little Mikael Tatarinof was jumping around throwing leaping elbows into the mouths of Flyers.


And Kordic was known as a "fighter", not a "hitter". Just ftr sgm, so you don't have to go look it up.

Posted by: cstanton1 | January 25, 2011 8:03 PM | Report abuse

speakin of mike commodore, who was the idiot on this board who claimed that commodore plays the game like Schultz?

the gray matter is disappearing. I didn't forget things like that. Must..take...more...ginkgo

Posted by: cstanton1 | January 25, 2011 8:07 PM | Report abuse

I'm not sure how Umberger stating the obvious is akin to a nobody devaluing the oldest, most-respected aspect of hockey since the game began.


Posted by: vermontcaps | January 25, 2011 6:40 PM

because its just like cherrypicking stats to support ones opinion.
when stats and statements don't support an argument - it is usually just discarded/devalued

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | January 25, 2011 8:08 PM | Report abuse

That is way too long of a list of untouchables. In the cap era, no team can really afford to have more than a small handful of true "untouchables." Even if you were just talking about the short term, e.g., this season, that is too long of a list.

The Caps are far removed the beginning of their rebuild. The time to make a serious push was yesterday, i.e., last season and now. McPhee was silly to use the logic that he did after another playoff failure and a clear sign of regression. His response was to get younger at several key positions. That's what rebuilding teams do, not ones in contention.

This team needed a serious shakeup during the offseason (really starting with GM but at a minimum, with the players). McPhee needed to utilize both periods of trade activity to have the best chance to get us closer to being a legit contender. He sat on his hands based in silly logic. Even if we had not had "5 bad days" and beat MTL, we still would've had to win 3 more playoff series against even better, tougher and more well-rounded competition.

This "stay good for a long time" thing is going to fail like most of McPhee's other decisions. There are a lot of teams that have started rebuilding over the past few years that will soon be in contention for a variety of reasons, including having players like Stamkos, Kane and Toews (last season), Malkin (2 seasons ago), Backstrom (last season) making far less than their actual on-ice values. I still contend that last season was our best chance from a window of opportunity perspective and a financial perspective with 19 still making chump change compared to his real worth.

Pitt and Chicago made all out pushes while they had their core talents making chump change. That won't be the recipe for every team going forward but the idea is that you need to strike while the iron is hot in the cap era. There is a good chance that McPhee's overly conservative, eternal rebuild philosophy is going to be looked back upon as an utter failure and wasted opportunity.

Aside from all that whining, the Caps are playing the right kind of hockey for the first time in Boudreau's era, regardless of the competition. We're seeing that it isn't easy to be good both offensively and defensively. It takes time and they shouldn't deviate from this path. That run 'n gun crap hasn't come close to working outside the AHL and it won't work in the future. It certainly won't breed long-term success if there is even such thing in the cap era. I just hope that BB doesn't get frustrated with the lack of scoring and go back to that false hope system he's been using for a while now. They are on the right path in terms of how they're playing. If BB can't keep them in line defensively and Ted still doesn't can GMGM after this season, I'd strongly consider bringing in a coach with a more balanced coaching philosophy to continue in this direction.

Posted by: tmac2yao | January 25, 2011 8:25 PM | Report abuse

Untouchables...

6) Erskine (for you Vermont!!!)

Posted by: SoaringCaps | January 25, 2011 7:34 PM | Report abuse

Only #6? Just kidding, always fun seeing a little love thrown Big E's way. In fact, I miss writing about him as I've turned my attention to another disrespected warrior, DJK, and I'm trying the best I can to fight a losing battle.

Don't worry, Johnny and King Kong, I won't forget about you when the team returns to 100% health and you're both returned to the practice squad. I'll be sure that your names live-on in these threads, as they certainly won't be heard over the p.a. in the Phone Booth.

Posted by: vermontcaps | January 25, 2011 8:36 PM | Report abuse

For what it's worth: Vegas odds now favor Penguins or Canucks to win Cup (was Blackhawks or Caps at beginning of season).

Posted by: kcbrichmond | January 25, 2011 8:40 PM | Report abuse

No doubt Erskine will continue to play a lot regardless of Poti's health. King, maybe not.

Posted by: zmega | January 25, 2011 8:41 PM | Report abuse

And the Caps absolutey need to part ways with one of Semin and Ovechkin. I think it's fairly obvious which one they would pick if they agree.

Roughly $15 mil is way too much to invest in a couple of wings in the hard cap era.

Posted by: tmac2yao | January 25, 2011 8:43 PM | Report abuse

And because I just used disrespect and DJK in the same sentence, what's up with the scorers who track hits?? On Long Island, I saw him crumple an Islander while in on the forecheck and heard an audible moan from the crowd, as it was the hardest hit of the game. But he wasn't credited with a hit...huh?

And halfway through the first period last night, DJK chipped it out of the defensive zone, followed the puck deep while his linemates changed, and finished his check solidly along the endboards. But he wasn't credited with a hit...huh?

Meanwhile, I've seen some inflated hit totals by others who apparently get credited for accidentally bumping into the opposition. Whatever. I've got no problem being a martyr for exposing the organizational conspiracy to keep certain players down.

Posted by: vermontcaps | January 25, 2011 8:51 PM | Report abuse

3) Spezza has not been known for showing up in the playoffs.

________________________________

49 pts in 49 games...just saying. He's actually a pretty clutch player.

RE; Getzlaf and Fehr

I've been over this before, but you cannot simply look back and cherry-pick certain draft predicaments in order to make it seem like a GM missed out on a player. That 03 draft was very, very unique as well.

Posted by: richmondphil2 |

Posted by: richmondphil2 | January 25, 2011 8:58 PM | Report abuse

There are NO friggin' untouchables on this team, any one of them can be had for the right price.

The Great One was traded after scoring 1669 points outta his 2857 total points in his career. The notion that anyone of this under-achieving team is "untouchable" is absolutely ridiculous.

Posted by: joek443 | January 25, 2011 9:00 PM | Report abuse

I agree with you, joek, as far as the way things would be in an ideal world. But the reality is that this is still a business and even if it would hypothetically be beneficial to let's say trade Ovechkin (not necessarily saying it would be), there is just no way that happens any time soon. From Leonsis' perspective, Ovechkin is untouchable for the forseeable future. I can't imagine them parting ways with Backstrom and perhaps one or two other players either.

Regardless, it would be silly to have a list of more than a few "untouchables" in this era.

Posted by: tmac2yao | January 25, 2011 9:25 PM | Report abuse

Soaring Caps, I agree with you.

Someone suggested Holtby/Fehr+Eakin+1st round pick for ONE player (Fisher)? Are you nuts? Why not throw in Alzner and Chimera while you're giving away our team?

Posted by: CAP-lanta | January 25, 2011 11:20 PM | Report abuse

DJK played a good game against the Rangers. I like his energy.

Here is a list of untouchables on the Caps.

1. NOBODY is untouchable.

Give the Caps the right price, they should trade anybody off the roster.

Posted by: chriscaps | January 25, 2011 11:55 PM | Report abuse

"The Rags, Flyers, and Pens (3 smart and fairly successful teams) employ hitters and fighters. Why do they do it SGM?"

First, the Rangers have won one SC over the last 70 years. The Flyers haven't won one in 35 years.

I think Goons are hired for two reasons. 1) Fights get a rise out of the crowd for a few minutes and does satisfy a small part of the fan base(the cstantons, vermontcaps, and Hunterforcoach's of the world).

2) Some GMs still make teams like it was 30 years ago. Listening to Milbury it sounds like it was 1975. The game has changed since then. Some have adapted, some haven't.

Having a pure fighter in the lineup playing 4 minutes in a game is not going to negatively effect you too much. The player is essentially worthless, you might as well sign Brooklyn Decker and dress her up in a bikini to sit on the bench, because you essentially get the same amount of hockey.

I like the Chris Neils, Shawn Thorntons of the NHL. They have a very valuable place in the game. There is a reason those guys suit up for playoff games, but the Godddards do not. They can actually play hockey.

You can disagree with the article if you like, that is fine. But it is apparent that at least a good portion of NHL players feel that way.

Posted by: sgm3 | January 26, 2011 12:09 AM | Report abuse

Holtby/Fehr+Eakin+1st round pick for ONE player (Fisher)? Are you nuts? Why not throw in Alzner and Chimera while you're giving away our team?

Posted by: CAP-lanta |

That is quite the overpayment for Mike Fisher, in my humble opinion....

Posted by: richmondphil2 | January 26, 2011 1:34 AM | Report abuse

Holtby/Fehr+Eakin+1st round pick for ONE player (Fisher)? Are you nuts?
----------------------------------

Well Eakin has proven nothing in the NHL just yet, God knows the Sens need a goalie. As far as Fehr I don't think he'll be missed.

If they can get Fisher for just those 3 players then I think I would make the deal.

Posted by: joek443 | January 26, 2011 7:52 AM | Report abuse

I like what the NHL has done here with their All Star game. It's a far better wrinkle than what the idiots at MLB came up with for their All Star game when they decided that home field in the World Series would depend on the winner.

Posted by: Beltwayboy7 | January 26, 2011 8:11 AM | Report abuse

underpants2,

You just want Fisher here so you can gawk at Carrie Underwood from your seat.

Posted by: akmzrazor | January 26, 2011 1:12 PM | Report abuse

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