Network News

X My Profile
View More Activity
On Twitter: kcarrera and PostSports  |  Facebook  |  E-mail alerts: Sports and Redskins  |  RSS

Alzner ready for playoff debut

Karl Alzner was focused on helping the Bears on Tuesday. Then he got a call he didn't expect.

"When I did get the call I was like, 'That's kind of strange,'" Alzner after the morning skate at KCI. "Because there were still [other defensemen available] here. But [maybe his history with John Carlson] is what they were thinking about. I'm happy that they did."

Alzner said he isn't sure which defenseman he'll be paired in tonight's pivotal Game 7 against the Habs. But Carlson later said he expects to play with Alzner, his former partner with the AHL-leading Bears earlier this season.

"The way it is right now, with what the team has done this season, Game 7 of the first round, you really, really want to win this one advance," Alzner said. "But it's just a game. Just play and have fun. I've come to realize that the last half of the season, not to over think things too much."

Alzner has played five career games against Montreal, more than any other opponent. This meeting, though, is by far the biggest - for the team and perhaps for himself.

"This is the highest measuring stick," Alzner said. "Every time I'm here, I'm fighting for a job. And it's no different now."

If Alzner does play with Carlson, he said their familiarity with one another hopefully will make him a little more comfortable.

"With us being so close in age," Alzner said, "and hanging a lot off the ice, it carries over to the ice."

Coach Bruce Boudreau wouldn't tip his hand when asked about his lineup. But he said he's confident in Alzner's ability to step in for injured veteran Tom Poti, who is sidelined with a series face/eye injury. (Boudreau only offered a "No" when asked if there's an update on Poti).

"He's been in an awful lot of big games already in his young life," Boudreau said of Alzner. "He wants to be in that position because he wants to prove he's an everyday NHL player. I think he's excited about being here and I don't the pressure whether it's Game 1 or Game 7 is going to do anything to Karl."

By Tarik El-Bashir  |  April 28, 2010; 11:45 AM ET
 
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Varlamov appears set to start
Next: Boudreau: 'It's an exciting part of hockey lore'

Comments

first

Posted by: chrisclarksucks | April 28, 2010 11:57 AM | Report abuse

Go Caps!

Posted by: rmcazz | April 28, 2010 11:57 AM | Report abuse

Turn it on boys. We need some of that Hershey mojo.

Since all the Caps forgot, maybe Alzner can help them remember what it's like to have fun playing hockey and win.

Posted by: large23220 | April 28, 2010 11:58 AM | Report abuse

Another BB gut feel?

We're waited all season to see Alzner and Carlson together. Sorry it's taken a game 7 for it to happen but the future is now.

Let's go CAPS!!!!!

Posted by: RedRedRed | April 28, 2010 12:02 PM | Report abuse

@ large23220

I think your right...fun has been a key missing ingredient foor the Caps this series! Just go out and play boys!

Posted by: capscoach | April 28, 2010 12:03 PM | Report abuse

I think you have to like the energy and hunger that a guy wanting to win a job on the biggest stage will bring. Hopefully he'll be the analog to Montreal's Subban.

Posted by: TheLeaver | April 28, 2010 12:04 PM | Report abuse

I'm more worried about Varly. He should have had that second goal last game. The third one should never have been shot. One wonders whether Halak would have saved all three though.

Posted by: FloridaCapsFan | April 28, 2010 12:05 PM | Report abuse

I think Erskine is injured, guessing fractured foot.

Posted by: puckman | April 28, 2010 12:08 PM | Report abuse

Hopefully Varly has a short leash tonight, not like the last game 7 he played in.

Posted by: FloridaCapsFan | April 28, 2010 12:08 PM | Report abuse

I'm more worried about Varly. He should have had that second goal last game. The third one should never have been shot. One wonders whether Halak would have saved all three though.

Posted by: FloridaCapsFan

Why? Name the goalie who hasn't given up a "soft" goal in this year's playoffs. The Caps aren't at game 7 because of Varly or Theo.

Posted by: ablake70 | April 28, 2010 12:11 PM | Report abuse

1) IF the caps lose tonight look for the "Boudreau watch" to start in earnest.
2) Am I asking for his head, no, but at what point is he held accountable for the failures of things that have been a problem for 2+ seasons: special teams and lack of focus(inmatrity)
3) If they lose, might the Dale Hunter regime be close at hand?

Posted by: fauxrumors | April 28, 2010 12:14 PM | Report abuse

i hope he plays well. I don't think he will but I hope he plays well. I think Montreal will attack that side of the ice all night long. He's very suspect to a dump and chase game.

those who mentioned Subban. Subban is big and strong enough to absorb a hit, maintain puck possession, then skate out with the puck. He's just confident and strong on his skates. Alzner is not. Not yet anyway. He's just a step or two behind in his development compared to a guy like Subban who is known as an offensive dman but is kind of like Carlson, he can play both ends and he has the strength to compete at this level.

Posted by: cstanton1 | April 28, 2010 12:16 PM | Report abuse

I don't see a repeat performance tonight by Halak, at least not as good as the other night. Game 6 he just got in there and doled out that performance. Today, he's thinking he's gotta live up to the hype, it's in his head.

If we put close to the same amount of shots on him as we did the other night, and get/keep guys in the paint, we're going to do well.

Posted by: fesslercw | April 28, 2010 12:19 PM | Report abuse

1) IF the caps lose tonight look for the "Boudreau watch" to start in earnest.
--------------

heavily doubt it because he and McPhee are aligned in what they believe in. Unless McPhee goes, I doubt Bruce will. Its very hard to fire a coach who just took you to the best reg season record. They'll give him one more chance.

If they lose, it'll be chalked up as a fluke (you know, game 7s can go either way type of stuff). And they'll go looking for more speed or something in the offseason.

Posted by: cstanton1 | April 28, 2010 12:20 PM | Report abuse

@ablake70

Halak!

Posted by: capscoach | April 28, 2010 12:21 PM | Report abuse

i expect the Caps to win tonight. But this shouldn't be a measuring stick at all. The bar shouldn't be lowered to what it was before the playoffs started. This team should still have the expectation of advancing at least to the 3rd round/conf finals. Anything less should be considered a significant regression.

if the caps lose for some reason then obviously its a major regression but they need to eventually do more than just sneak by the Habs.

Posted by: cstanton1 | April 28, 2010 12:22 PM | Report abuse

Dale Hunter regime? Are you serious? Can you base that on any kind of substantive rumor or evidence? I'm honestly asking.

Posted by: MarylanDChris | April 28, 2010 12:23 PM | Report abuse

Varly better of practice his high glove side at practice if he is playing tonight! I would have gone with Theo...only b/c he deserves another shot and this game 7 seels eerily familiar to our last game 7!

Posted by: capscoach | April 28, 2010 12:24 PM | Report abuse

@ capscoach

You must not have watched game 2.

Posted by: ablake70 | April 28, 2010 12:27 PM | Report abuse

If things don't go well tonight, look back to games 1 and 5. It was ridiculous that some people were upset about the last game. The Caps played very well, they just ran into an extremely hot goalie. The team has left itself vulnerable to random occurrences that can turn a game 7.

Posted by: zmega | April 28, 2010 12:27 PM | Report abuse

Our father who art in DC, Hockey be thy name. Thy will will be done; The cup will be won on ice, as well as in the stands. Give us this day our hockey sticks. Forgive us our penalties, as we forgive those who cross-check against us. Lead us not into elimination, but deliver us to victory. In the name of the fans, Lord Stanley, and in the name of the C-A-P-S Caps Caps Caps!!!

Posted by: ajian1 | April 28, 2010 12:30 PM | Report abuse

WHY IN THE HELL IS EVERYBODY TRYING TO FIRE GABBY?

Idiots. Look at his record compared to EVERY OTHER HEAD COACH IN WASHINGTON CAPITALS FRANCHISE HISTORY and get some perspective. Christ.

Posted by: large23220 | April 28, 2010 12:31 PM | Report abuse

@ large23220

Yeah, cause you know... regular season success means a whole lot. Let's keep raising SE Division Championship banners and bowing out in the first round. Sounds like a plan!

BB needs to go if they lose tonight.

Posted by: SuperZ3383 | April 28, 2010 12:35 PM | Report abuse

Lets be loud and proud tonight at the phone booth...

The chant that I want to hear serenading the victorius Caps during the final handshake....

"OLAYOLAYOLAYOLAY...OLAY...OLAY"

Posted by: allCAPS | April 28, 2010 12:35 PM | Report abuse

large23220:

you answered your own question: the guys nickname is Gabby!!! That alone is grounds to run Shoney Big Boy outta town!!!

Posted by: doughless | April 28, 2010 12:37 PM | Report abuse

Bottom line, Caps need to score 4 goals tonight.

Averaged 3.5 goals per game in this series.

Averaged close to 4 goals per game during the season. Goals against is 2.84 per game.

Habs have averaged 3 goals per game during the series. Averaged 2.65 gpg during the season.

Tonight's final score 5-3 Caps!

Posted by: puckman | April 28, 2010 12:37 PM | Report abuse

(REPOST FROM LAST THREAD)

I caught some early minutes of the DET-PHX game and it looked like the 'Yotes were battling the Wings to a standstill. How did it become 6-1 Detroit? It almost seems as if they were toying with Phoenix the whole time. :/

I think it has been proven beyond any reasonable doubt that our Caps DO NOT SUCK this season.

--Teams that suck don't outscore their opponents as this Caps team has.
--Teams that suck don't don't limit their regulation losses to just 15 in an 82 game season.
--Teams that suck don't become the first non-Original Six team to amass over 120 standings points.
--Teams that suck don't win the President's Trophy.
--Teams that suck don't have the #1 power play in the NHL.
--Teams that suck don't have over ten (10) 20-goal scorers, and two players in the League's top 5
--Teams that suck don't have both a Norris Trophy finalist and the League's plus/minus leader on their blueline.


I stand by my earlier statements: regardless of tonight's outcome, this is the best Caps Team ever.

What I don't understand is how DET puts 50 shots on-net last night and lights up a Vezina Trophy finalist (Bryzgalov). Meanwhile we put 54 shots on some [expletive] NOBODY and get ONE STINKING GOAL!!!. It must be an aberration. I don't have any answers for you folks, except that those who say we didn't play 60 minutes are...shall we say, "not entirely accurate". I'm sorry, but putting 54 shots on net is not a sign of a team "not playing 60 minutes".

I also agree with an earlier poster: Send someone expendible (to ejection or suspension) to run over Halak and put him out of the game.

Yes it's dirty, but worse things have been done to us without consequence or retribution, and there's too much at stake now.

Bottom line, This is the best team in franchise history, and the fans are behind the team like never before. We should win. We need to win. We must win.

If we don't, I will still remain a Caps' fan, but may also finally (after 23 years) feel compleed to ask deep metaphysical questions which --out of respect for the delicate mental state of my audience--I will refrain from specifying at this time.

Posted by: Rhino40 | April 28, 2010 12:37 PM | Report abuse

also, you might wanna check where this guy named Wilson took the team

Posted by: doughless | April 28, 2010 12:37 PM | Report abuse

BB had too good of a regular season to get axed. I think he deserves a few more years based on that alone. They dominiated most of last game, I suspect they will do so again tonight with a better outcome. I would cut a few players long before I would cut BB.

Posted by: LloydChristmas | April 28, 2010 12:40 PM | Report abuse

Our father who art in DC, Hockey be thy name. Thy will will be done; The cup will be won on ice, as well as in the stands. Give us this day our hockey sticks. Forgive us our penalties, as we forgive those who cross-check against us. Lead us not into elimination, but deliver us to victory. In the name of the fans, Lord Stanley, and in the name of the C-A-P-S Caps Caps Caps!!!

Posted by: ajian1 | April 28, 2010 12:30 PM

AMEN!

Posted by: Rhino40 | April 28, 2010 12:41 PM | Report abuse

I think BB should deliver the Miracle speech tonight...excpet for the fact that we're not the underdogs.

Posted by: capscoach | April 28, 2010 12:41 PM | Report abuse

Anybody else hear the Battle Hymn of the Republic playing while they read this?

"...Glory, glory, hallelujah!
His truth is marching on!"

Posted by: wtf_e_fehr | April 28, 2010 7:53 AM

Posted by: Rhino40 | April 28, 2010 12:41 PM | Report abuse

I'm not calling for an end the Gabby Era, but there's a strong part of me that would love to see a Dale Hunter Era. I think he'd bring a strong work ethic when he decides to leave London. Either that, or he could have raced Brads off the bench to fight Downie.

Posted by: Brute | April 28, 2010 12:42 PM | Report abuse

That "OLAY" stuff is garbage... What would be savage as all get out is the entire crowd singing the national anthem as time was expiring. Boo that punk 455 Habs fans...

Posted by: Lee26 | April 28, 2010 12:42 PM | Report abuse

Or maybe:

"Родина-мать зовет - лидер нашей армии к победе!"

("Motherland Calls: lead our army to victory!")

Posted by: Rhino40 | April 28, 2010 12:43 PM | Report abuse

WHY IN THE HELL IS EVERYBODY TRYING TO FIRE GABBY?

Idiots. Look at his record compared to EVERY OTHER HEAD COACH IN WASHINGTON CAPITALS FRANCHISE HISTORY and get some perspective. Christ.

Posted by: large23220

That's great. I'm sure Zach Parise is thinking "Yeah we lost to the Flyers in the 1st round of the playoffs, but at least we had a better regular season record!" as he's walking the golf course this afternoon.

Posted by: ablake70 | April 28, 2010 12:43 PM | Report abuse

Our father who art in DC, Hockey be thy name. Thy will will be done; The cup will be won on ice, as well as in the stands. Give us this day our hockey sticks. Forgive us our penalties, as we forgive those who cross-check against us. Lead us not into elimination, but deliver us to victory. In the name of the fans, Lord Stanley, and in the name of the C-A-P-S Caps Caps Caps!!!

Posted by: ajian1 | April 28, 2010 12:30 PM

AMEN

Posted by: capscoach | April 28, 2010 12:44 PM | Report abuse

Our father who art in DC, Hockey be thy name. Thy will will be done; The cup will be won on ice, as well as in the stands. Give us this day our hockey sticks. Forgive us our penalties, as we forgive those who cross-check against us. Lead us not into elimination, but deliver us to victory. In the name of the fans, Lord Stanley, and in the name of the C-A-P-S Caps Caps Caps!!!

Posted by: ajian1 | April 28, 2010 12:30 PM


AMEN!!!!

Posted by: Rhino40 | April 28, 2010 12:44 PM | Report abuse

@ LloydChristmas

So you would get rid of Green, Semin, and Flash who had great regular seasons but did little this playoff season, but give BB a pass because of his regular season record?

Posted by: ablake70 | April 28, 2010 12:49 PM | Report abuse

Wow...maybe we can all learn from a kid...love this quote :

"But it's just a game. Just play and have fun. I've come to realize that the last half of the season, not to over think things too much."

Posted by: Capsfannmiss | April 28, 2010 12:55 PM | Report abuse

For the record, yes. BB can't suit up and go out there and execute. Everything he tells the players is dead on. It's up to them to carry out his orders.

Alright, the boards are too unstable today. I'm not going to chime in anymore. Maybe I'll see you mentally fragile people on later during the game.

Posted by: LloydChristmas | April 28, 2010 12:56 PM | Report abuse

Bruce thought of a great way to beat Halak...“You want to take your stick and hit him over the head with it,” Boudreau said Tuesday. “But you can’t do that.”

I offered to poison his water bottle, but I can't have a record if I want to keep my job.

Interesting note though...everyone is annoyingly reffering to the Caps horrid record in game 7s throughout history, but Habs coach is 0-4 in game 7's.

Posted by: capscoach | April 28, 2010 12:56 PM | Report abuse

@ ablake70

I watched game 2, also watched the last 2 when Varly gave up 2 in the first 10 mins in each game. Where's his leash? This team can't keep playing catch up for 50+ mins in every game. Theo deserves a chance to redeem himself after what he did for this team this year. How many of you would be able to have your 2 month old child die in late summer and not tell your boss that you have to take a little time off? Theo didn't, he reported to work, never gave that as an excuse for bad play and left his heart on the ice for his team this year. Once again, Theo deserves this start.

Posted by: ludeman95 | April 28, 2010 12:57 PM | Report abuse

@ablake

One playoff failure does not equal a firing.

Last year was a slight disappointment in terms of expectations. But losing to the eventual SC champs in 7 in the second round did not qualify as a failure last year. This year it would.

Two years ago the Caps were only in the playoffs because BB got hired (6-14-1 before BB was hired indicates that) and i think had less points than the Flyers in the regular season.

Posted by: sgm3 | April 28, 2010 12:58 PM | Report abuse

@capscoach

I did see that and thought "it makes BB's game 7 record look outstanding."

Posted by: sgm3 | April 28, 2010 1:03 PM | Report abuse

ablake@70 I would listen to trade offers for everyone on the current roster with the exception of the entire 1st line, Laich, Carlson, Green, and Alzner.

Posted by: StanleyCap | April 28, 2010 1:04 PM | Report abuse

Unleash the Fury!
Unleash the Canadien Killer- John Carlson

I feel like we may have a game similar to the Wings game last nite......Lets Play 60 minutes of rock em sock em hockey!!!

Posted by: Capsfannmiss | April 28, 2010 1:04 PM | Report abuse

Wow. Six hours to game time and already some fans drawing up a pink slip for Gabby? Who do you replace him with considering our current roster? (P.S.--Don't say Ken Hitchcock or Jacques Martin.) I say the Caps win tonight, and we will get a new playoff highlight to watch over and over again. I, for one, am ready to replace the Dale Hunter 1988 breakaway against Philadelphia. That clip is great, but it can now buy a beer and has already graduated from college.

Posted by: TheLeaver | April 28, 2010 1:08 PM | Report abuse

I think the person I am most concerned about for this game is BB...he has been snippy with the media and not himself even with the players...He needs to trust his instincts...cause lets face it...they rock! Rock the Red!!!

Posted by: capscoach | April 28, 2010 1:09 PM | Report abuse

@ sgm3

How about 3?

It's not that the Caps lost 2 out of the 3 series they've played, it's the way they lost. The Habs have made adjustments. At first they were playing the shooters to force turnovers. Now they have sacrificed the perimeter and clogged the crease. You said Knuble was invisible and not going to the net. Well, he is. The problem is that 2-3 Habs are waiting for him and knocking him out the way. What was BBs adjustment? He switches Ovi-Backstrom-Knuble to Ovi-Belanger-Knuble.

I'm not saying BB needs to be fired. The problem I have is that some fans think he is blameless and it's all the players. I don't agree.

Posted by: ablake70 | April 28, 2010 1:10 PM | Report abuse

I feel like we may have a game similar to the Wings game last nite......Lets Play 60 minutes of rock em sock em hockey!!!

Posted by: Capsfannmiss | April 28, 2010 1:04 PM | Report abuse

I thought that would happen in game 6. Let's hope they turn it on tonight. I believe that the Caps will either win big or they'll lose a close one.

Posted by: thomas20 | April 28, 2010 1:10 PM | Report abuse

I stand by my earlier statements: regardless of tonight's outcome, this is the best Caps Team ever
-----------------------------

by far the craziest most illogical thing i've ever read in a while.

You can say that this is the most talented Caps team
You can say this is the best reg season Caps team ever

but thats about all you can say so far.

Posted by: cstanton1 | April 28, 2010 1:16 PM | Report abuse

I give up guessing whats going to happen in a game...I luv this team but if they are anything it is unpredictable...hopefully that will work in our favor today!

Posted by: capscoach | April 28, 2010 1:16 PM | Report abuse

@ablake

Neither of the last two years were playoff failures. Just because a team lost in the playoffs doesn't make it a failure. Otherwise there would be 29 new coaches every year.

BB did make some good adjustments. How about starting Varly and Gordon in game 3? Those guys did wonders for the Caps in games 3 and 4.

BB has also made some poor decisions.

If the Caps lose BB will be on the hot seat come next year's playoffs. But one bad playoff season does not mean getting fired.

Hopefully the Caps win tonight and make this conversation meaningless.

Posted by: sgm3 | April 28, 2010 1:19 PM | Report abuse

Repost from earlier thread:

We have a painful history, but now it's time for that to all change. A Game 7 victory in a hard-fought series could result in a strong run towards the Cup. So come on Caps fans, let's get behind this team. You want a good song to get pumped up for tonight, check out the new song by Sick Puppies called War...let's do this

This is war
And it's on tonight
So get up and fight
Get up and fight
You had all your life
To run and hide
Now step up, now step up
Let's do this

Posted by: JDintheSD | April 28, 2010 1:22 PM | Report abuse

@cstanton1

I would agree that this is the best Caps team ever, even if they lose.

But if they lose it will be nowhere near the most accomplished.

When I think of best, I think that if they somehow could face any of the older Caps teams head to head in a best of seven, who would win. I think this year's team would beat any of those prior teams.

Posted by: sgm3 | April 28, 2010 1:23 PM | Report abuse

I'd take Erskine in the lineup over Alzner any day of the week. I'm so disappointed in how BB has handled the lineups that, quite frankly, I hope we lose so that BB has to account for his decisions in the spotlight. The team I'm watching now isn't the same team I watched all season, and BB isn't giving deserving players their just due. Erskine and Theodore deserve to play, but their names aren't Corvo, Belanger, Alzner, Varlamov, or Carlson so they have to ride the bench. The personnel decisions we've made have ripped-apart any concept of team play, and I fear we're going to pay for it tonight.

Posted by: vermontcaps | April 28, 2010 1:24 PM | Report abuse

My 2 cents are: Get Ovie off playing D on the PK and secondly reduce Green's ice time by 25 per cent.

Personally I'd like to see Erskine back in the line-up, out there rubbing guys out especially in front of the net.

Go Caps! Time is running out to show us your in the stretch type A games.

Posted by: capper3 | April 28, 2010 1:24 PM | Report abuse

@ ajian1: Amen.

I'm hoping sooo hard that we win tonight. I just feel like it's our game to win or lose. I have a softball double-header at 6:30 and 7:30. Hopefully when I come home and flip on the TV at the end of the 2nd P we are winning.

Posted by: ChuckCounty | April 28, 2010 1:24 PM | Report abuse

When I think of best, I think that if they somehow could face any of the older Caps teams head to head in a best of seven, who would win. I think this year's team would beat any of those prior teams.

Posted by: sgm3 | April 28, 2010 1:23 PM | Report abuse

this year's team can't even beat the 8th seeded Habs...no way this team beats any caps team w/langway and stevens

Posted by: vermontcaps | April 28, 2010 1:28 PM | Report abuse

@cstanton1

I would agree that this is the best Caps team ever, even if they lose.

--------------------

so you don't use criteria such as focus, work ethic, commitment, balance, mental/physical grit underachieving/overachieving etc etc etc to gauge what is meant by the term "best team" ?

mindboggling.

best talented? yes

best team? no. In my mind the jury on that was in all year. But for the sake of argument, you have to let it play out to be 100% accurate.

You cannot say this is the best team ever if they get bounced to the 8th seed in the 1st round. Logically it doesn't make any sense. You're using points and talent as your overriding criteria. There's a lot more to it than that.

Posted by: cstanton1 | April 28, 2010 1:30 PM | Report abuse

Halak made 45 saves in Game 1 (only 2 goals for us), in the following game he made 31 saves (6 goals for Caps) and finally in Game 3, he was pulled after 28 minutes on ice and allowing 3 goals.

Let's look at Games 5 and 6:

(too bad Montreal decided to put Halak back in after Game 4, I think Carey did an "amazing" job hehe)

Game 5: Halak 37 saves
Game 6: Halak 53 saves
Game 7: Halak exhausted?

Posted by: RusCap | April 28, 2010 1:31 PM | Report abuse

When I think of best, I think that if they somehow could face any of the older Caps teams head to head in a best of seven, who would win. I think this year's team would beat any of those prior teams.
------------------

thats not fair in the least. That way you can say this team was better than any Montreal team who ever won the Cup also. Or any Oilers team who ever won the Cup. The game is so much faster now and players are bigger. You can't compare this to a team 10 yrs or 20 yrs prior and make it a fair comparison. Hell, the current version of the BlueJackets would probably give most teams from 20 yrs ago a run for their money just based on the way the players and game has advanced.

Posted by: cstanton1 | April 28, 2010 1:32 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: ludeman95 | April 28, 2010 1:33 PM | Report abuse

I think it will be important to score early because once Halak gets into a groove, he can be very hard to beat. We need to rush the net, create traffic, and play physical!

Posted by: capscoach | April 28, 2010 1:34 PM | Report abuse

The beauty about best of 7 is that the cream rises to the top and tonight will not be an exception which ever way it ends up.

It'll be hard to argue, if the Habs win, that as a whole team (players, coaches, GM, etc.) they are a better team than the Caps.

I believe the Caps will prevail because I really do think they are a better team and they will rise to the occasion.

Let's go out and make it happen.

Posted by: Moose33 | April 28, 2010 1:34 PM | Report abuse

Yes, those Langway teams did what in the playoffs?

@cstanton1

When did I say I didn't use criteria such as "focus, work ethic, commitment, balance, mental/physical grit underachieving/overachieving etc etc etc" to determine the best team?

I think of all of that and how a team works together and everything. And I do think this is the Caps best team every, regardless of the outcome of tonight.

Now that is probably more a comment on the teams of the Caps past than anything. But the comparison is what it is.

Posted by: sgm3 | April 28, 2010 1:35 PM | Report abuse

For the record, yes. BB can't suit up and go out there and execute. Everything he tells the players is dead on. It's up to them to carry out his orders.
Posted by: LloydChristmas | April 28, 2010 12:56 PM
----------------------------------
Amen! He can preach "park in front of the net" but if they won't do it, what's he supposed to do? Can't bench 'em all.

Posted by: tess2201 | April 28, 2010 1:36 PM | Report abuse

@cstanton1

I would think of the players and how they compared to the other players in the league that year to determine their "value" and using that along with all the other criteria you gave on how to judge a team, I reached my conclusion.

Posted by: sgm3 | April 28, 2010 1:38 PM | Report abuse

here's the secret... take less shots.

i heard that halak was 9-0-1 when facing more than 40 shots.

oh... and play 60 minutes and play strong at both ends of the ice.

and while you're at all that, could you please fix our global economy?

Posted by: natresgroup | April 28, 2010 1:38 PM | Report abuse

Montreal -- 5

The "little" Cappies -- 1

Posted by: stephenwhelton | April 28, 2010 1:41 PM | Report abuse

@cstanton1

I would think of the players and how they compared to the other players in the league that year to determine their "value" and using that along with all the other criteria you gave on how to judge a team, I reached my conclusion.

Posted by: sgm3 | April 28, 2010 1:38 PM | Report abuse

ok, so if this team loses in the 1st round to Montreal, that means they're the most underachieving team in Caps history, correct?

so the most underachieving team in caps history is also the BEST team?

Posted by: cstanton1 | April 28, 2010 1:56 PM | Report abuse

@cstanton1

Yes, I think that would be a fair assessment.

Posted by: sgm3 | April 28, 2010 1:58 PM | Report abuse

i'd say in terms of balance, the best team I ever saw lost to the Bruins in the Conf finals around 1989. Unfortunately, we lost critical components of our offense right before the series started in Dino and Hatcher. And the B's were a great defensive team.

this current team has the most skill. But the word BEST cannot be applied if you use the qualifier "regardless of tonight's outcome"

thats nutty. How far you advance, how you persevere thru adversity, all of that factors into the equation of who is best

Posted by: cstanton1 | April 28, 2010 2:00 PM | Report abuse

@cstanton1

So who do you think was a better team the 2001 Patriots (who beat the Rams in the SB) or the 2007 Patriots (who lost to the Giants in the SB). If they somehow could play each other head-to-head I think the 2007 Patriots would win 9 out of 10 games.

That's what makes sports so interesting. The best team doesn't always win.

You judgin if this team can or cannot be the Caps best team based on the outcome of this game is ridiculous.

What if the Habs win 3-2 in OT with all of their goals coming on strange deflections? Then this Caps team can't be the best Caps team.

But then think, what if those strange deflection all hit the post instead of going in and the Caps win 2-0 (everything else being the same). Then this Caps team can be considered the best ever?

Seems a little ridiculous to me. It seems like you are not judging the team based on all the criteria you listed and are instead judging them by the outcome of one game.

Posted by: sgm3 | April 28, 2010 2:06 PM | Report abuse

What if the Habs win 3-2 in OT with all of their goals coming on strange deflections? Then this Caps team can't be the best Caps team.
-------------

ok, i'll poke another hole in this.

You're the one judging it on one game, not me. If the Caps lose the series, its not because of one game. They will lose because of how they have played over the course of that series.

So unless you can show me a situation where a team lost all 4 games in a series due to freak occurrences and bad luck, I stand by my assessment that how this team performs in the playoffs has absolutely got to be factored in when you talk about who is best.

Posted by: cstanton1 | April 28, 2010 2:16 PM | Report abuse

The Caps play a much different game in front of Varly then they play in front of Theo. I'm not sure if it's a confidence thing, but it seems they are playing not to lose rather than playing to win.
BB has not handled the goalie situation correctly.
Hockey is a simple game and I believe that BB is tinkering to much.
Keep it simple and Game 7 will be ours.

Posted by: baybuster | April 28, 2010 2:21 PM | Report abuse

@cstanton1

I completely agree that how a team performs in the playoffs has to be a factor and a signifcant factor. But it isn't the end all, be all. That's why I said the ranking may be more indicative of the Caps past than anything.

Only 1 Caps team has EVER won a conference finals game.

Since so few Caps teams have ever done anything of much in the playoffs that's why this Caps team gets rated as the best. The team that made the finals was good, but I don't think they could beat this year's Caps team.

Posted by: sgm3 | April 28, 2010 2:32 PM | Report abuse

@cstanton1

But you said it will be determined if they win the series or not. Well that has come down to one game. Therefore you are basing your analysis on the winner of this game (the winner of the series). The bounce factor could play in heavily in deciding this game. I have a hard time deciding how great a team is based on one bounce, be it good or bad. I think you need to look at the overall work, giving weight accordingly.

Posted by: sgm3 | April 28, 2010 2:36 PM | Report abuse

@vermontcaps - of course they'd beat 'em, the game is so much faster now, it's almost not the same game. Before, guys like Bure, Mogilny and Federov could almost skate through the entire lineup, now every team has at least a couple burners [and MTL has more than a couple]. Speed kills, man - which, btw is why I found so many of our deadline deals and acquisitions kind of perplexing.

Posted by: Timbo_1 | April 28, 2010 2:44 PM | Report abuse

Bob Gainey would probably still have a job if he'd swallowed his pride and just gone with the best goalie, rather than his big-ticket signee [who also happened to be Canadien-born, not sure why so many GMs put so much stock into that, but whatever]. And there's a reason Slovakia made it to the semifinal game in the Olympics, shocking the hockey world in the process - and with an injured Gaborik, old Demitra and beat-down Chara, at that.

But I don't expect Halak to be able to replicate tonight what he did in Game 6 - that's a very rare showing, even for a world-class athlete like him. We just need to keep the pressure on, and look for good shots [notice I said "good" shots - not just shots, period].

Posted by: Timbo_1 | April 28, 2010 2:53 PM | Report abuse

Big YES to Dale Hunter for next coach

Posted by: Political_Stratgst | April 28, 2010 3:20 PM | Report abuse

actually, fwiw, I dont think this is the most "skilled' team in Caps history, if we're going by talent alone. Anybody remember the team a few years back with this lineup??
Jagr, Lang, Bondra, Gonchar,Kolzig,Kono, Johansson, Witt.....:(

Posted by: peabody2 | April 28, 2010 3:34 PM | Report abuse

Never read so much bloody negativity in my whole life!

All you negative people pretend you know the game.

You toss out garbage and pretend to be some type of expert, but you're probably a bandwagon rider that never played the game.

This is playoff hockey.
Regular season means squat.

This is the Habs we are playing, and not some team from Carolina or Georgia...

Habs have a sweater that is embedded with a 100 years of pride, history, character, and WINNING.

If anyone thought this was going to be a cakewalk, then you truly do not understand the game, and its roots, or the 100 year old Habs jersey and their 24 Stanley Cups.

When Jean Beliveau shows up at the rink with his 10 Stanley Cup rings, what do you think that does for the boys?

When Henri Richard shows up at the rink with his 11 Stanley Cup rings, what do you think that does for the boys?

When Guy Lafleur shows up at the rink with his 5 Stanley cup rings, what do you think that does for the boys.

Who can show up at our rink?

That's why we need to start our own history.

Caps will WIN....but the lesson learned will be to NEVER disrespect your opponent ( hello Mike Green...) and NEVER believe that supposed pure talent will always beat HEART and GRIT and GUTS!

That might be basketball...
That might be baseball...
That might be football to a lessor degree.
That is NOT hockey!

GO CAPS!

Posted by: htgolf | April 28, 2010 3:42 PM | Report abuse

@timbo_1

speed does kill, but only when the time and space to use it is there. Speed and size are equally important and when pitted against each other, the team that plays more physical and tenacious wins. (If that team happens to be bigger, people say size wins; if that team happens to be smaller but faster, people will say speed wins) Thus, we wouldn't be talking about the Canadians "speed" if we played physical and took away that time and space. Instead, the Canadians would be talking about how they needed to get "bigger" to better compete. Six games is enough for me to recognize that the intangibles Erskine would bring to the lineup would far exceed his liability

Posted by: vermontcaps | April 28, 2010 3:46 PM | Report abuse

Never read so much bloody negativity in my whole life!

All you negative people pretend you know the game.

You toss out garbage and pretend to be some type of expert, but you're probably a bandwagon rider that never played the game.

This is playoff hockey.
Regular season means squat.

This is the Habs we are playing, and not some team from Carolina or Georgia...

Habs have a sweater that is embedded with a 100 years of pride, history, character, and WINNING.

If anyone thought this was going to be a cakewalk, then you truly do not understand the game, and its roots, or the 100 year old Habs jersey and their 24 Stanley Cups.

When Jean Beliveau shows up at the rink with his 10 Stanley Cup rings, what do you think that does for the boys?

When Henri Richard shows up at the rink with his 11 Stanley Cup rings, what do you think that does for the boys?

When Guy Lafleur shows up at the rink with his 5 Stanley cup rings, what do you think that does for the boys.

Who can show up at our rink?

That's why we need to start our own history.

Caps will WIN....but the lesson learned will be to NEVER disrespect your opponent ( hello Mike Green...) and NEVER believe that supposed pure talent will always beat HEART and GRIT and GUTS!

That might be basketball...
That might be baseball...
That might be football to a lessor degree.
That is NOT hockey!

GO CAPS!

Posted by: htgolf | April 28, 2010 3:47 PM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

 
 
RSS Feed
Subscribe to The Post

© 2010 The Washington Post Company