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Posted at 10:36 AM ET, 02/16/2011

Caps seeking another complete effort tonight vs. high-scoring Ducks

By Katie Carrera

When the Capitals first saw the Ducks in what turned out to be a 2-1 overtime win for Anaheim and the seventh loss in Washington's December slide, they utilized a checking line against their opponent's top stars. This time, though, the circumstances are a little different as Anaheim is no longer relying solely on Ryan Getzlaf, Corey Perry and Bobby Ryan for its offense.

Teemu Selanne, who did not face the Capitals in that first meeting because of a groin injury that caused him to miss time in November and December, will be in the lineup and has 12 points in the last seven games. Another veteran, Saku Koivu, has recently picked up his offensive production as well and has eight points in that same span.

Perry and Ryan have 11 and eight points respectively in the last seven games. And in three games since returning from nasal sinus fractures caused by a puck to the face, Getzlaf has four points of his own.

"It worked but it's a lot easier at home to do that," Coach Bruce Boudreau said of using a checking line against the Ducks. "And they didn't have Selanne back then, either, so they had one line and then three hard-working lines and now they're feeling pretty good about themselves. They've got some guys that can score and they have been scoring. It's going to be a lot tougher thing to do."

With another tough game against an opponent jockeying for position in the beyond-tight Pacific Division -- where four points separate first from fifth -- Boudreau stressed that he would most like to see the same dedication that he saw in Washington's 3-2 loss to Phoenix on Monday.

"Again, we're going against a team that's on a pretty good roll and we have to have the same kind of effort as we did [Monday] night," Boudreau said. "Whatever happens, I'll take, because we played, I thought, that good. I still thought that out of 20 guys we had maybe four or five guys not going as well as they should but the 14 guys that were playing were really good. We've got a team that needs all 20 guys playing or you're not going to have the success you want."

By Katie Carrera  | February 16, 2011; 10:36 AM ET
Categories:  Anaheim Ducks  
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Comments

"Whatever happens, I'll take"


This speaks VOLUMES

Posted by: Bagher | February 16, 2011 10:56 AM | Report abuse

Hah, to all those thinking BB would say we need to play a complete 60 minutes, stick with "the system", or beware of a hot goalie, you are wrong again. It's obvious (to Bruce that is), that its simply 4-5 anchors on the team keeping us down. And knowing Bruce as well as I do (from my months and months of posting here on CI), the anchors he is blaming are Semin, Neuvy, Fehr, Erskine, and DJK. =)

Btw, if Im this tired of hearing BB's quotes and takes on things, etc etc...imagine who tired the team is of them. No wonder he's lost the team.

Reading his drivel makes we want to take a broach to my eyes, Oedipus style (sans the mother thing of course).

Posted by: SeminAllOverTheIce | February 16, 2011 11:03 AM | Report abuse

"ANOTHER" complete effort?


Katie, you meant... A complete effort.


Last time I checked, a complete effort would include scoring more goals than your opponent.

Posted by: SoaringCaps | February 16, 2011 11:07 AM | Report abuse

@tom you are right I forgot about the bonus. However since the full bonus is not much more then any player we would have to trade/send down/waive/whaever and whoever it is will be within $200,000 of the Alzner bonus I still think the $1.4M is a better number to work off of.

Posted by: icehammer97 | February 16, 2011 11:07 AM | Report abuse

1) So the bar keeps getting lower in Caps-land. Now the coach will be happy with a 'complete effort' regardless of outcome??
2) Memo to BB: In the NHL/pro-team sports, success is judged by WINS!!! This is not the 2005 Caps where an "effort' was acceptable.

Posted by: jmol2112 | February 16, 2011 11:46 AM | Report abuse

@ SoaringCaps

My thoughts exactly.

If the Phoenix game was a complete effort then they just forfeit the rest of the season and start sending out refund checks now.

Posted by: LesGrossman | February 16, 2011 11:53 AM | Report abuse

@Semin....

I'm fed up with BB's quotes also, esp when in one breath he implies that he's pleased with the way the team played, but then he turns around and says that there were 4 or 5 guys who didn't play well enough.

So why was he so pleased about the other night? They LOST.... scored two measley goals, and put up another goose egg on the power play. I guess the standards have really been lowered this season.

This clueless clown has ZERO in the way of solutions to getting the team back on track. Worse yet, he NEVER puts any of the onus on himself (often the best coaches will say something to the effect of "we all have to do better, including myself and the rest of the coaching staff").

So if he's doing such an exemplary job of prepping the team then:

A) What he's instructing them to do is a joke, and isn't working

OR

B) The players just aren't listening any more.

Either way, his time is up....

Posted by: chombie13 | February 16, 2011 11:54 AM | Report abuse

It has often been said that GM looks up to Devils GM Lou Lamoriello. Let's hope he takes a page out of LL's book - in late March, 2000 LL fired coach Robbie Ftorek after the team lost 10 of its last 16 games, and made Larry Robinson the coach. That team won NJD's second Stanley Cup.

GM - have you called Lou???

Posted by: Thisistheyear | February 16, 2011 12:03 PM | Report abuse

One of two things will happen during the rest of the road trip: the Caps will give the type of effort against Phoenix that will win them 2-3 games or they will get swept and BB will be unemployed on Feb. 22nd. The new coach will want a long-term deal and there will be no more optional practices. Ovie and Backstrom will have to rededicate themselves as players and hopefully this will carryover to the playoffs.

In the meantime, GMGM has some work to do in acquiring a 2nd line center. BB has been kind in saying that MP and MJ have played well, but not consistently. What he really wants to say is that the Caps need an experienced, physical 2nd line center. If Arnott is available, why not make the trade? It will only cost draft picks and lower level propspects.

Posted by: wizfan89 | February 16, 2011 12:06 PM | Report abuse

Carolina is about to trade Ian White. To where I have no idea, but he was held out of practice at Maurice says a move is pending.

Posted by: ThePat | February 16, 2011 12:29 PM | Report abuse

Folks the problem is that the Players and Coaches are required to talk to the media. Many times it is in the contract. That being said I think it would be wise for BB to stop being Gabby. Maybe he ought to stop talking so much to the media. Not an insult but BB is too talkative. Talk we all know is not worth much in life.

Posted by: pkme | February 16, 2011 12:45 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: pkme | February 16, 2011 1:01 PM | Report abuse

To what "complete effort" are you referring? A "complete effort" doesn't include ZERO for five on the powerplay. A complete effort doesn't include one even strength shot on goal (by a fourth liner at that) in the first period. A complete effort doesn't result in three goals agains (we could have kept jose three or more for that). A COMPLETE EFFORT RESULTS IN A WIN. Anything less than a win, is an incomplete effort. You want to know how important this road trip is? If the Caps come back with only one or two wins, I think their season is over, and they don't even make the playoffs.

Posted by: dingram3 | February 16, 2011 1:03 PM | Report abuse

What amazes me is that all of you are calling for Bruce's head on a platter. This man has one of the highest winning percentages in Capitals history!! Why is it that a bunch of "so-called", non-athletic, probably never played the game fans are calling for the guys head when the playoffs havn't even started. Don't you think, as proven from years past that he had to make some changes? Come playoff time when the energy goes up, this defensive strategy will pay off.

With that said, the ENTIRE MANAGEMENT STAFF (not just BB) is making a mistake by trusting, yet again, entering the playoffs with a young goalie, who if it turns out to be Neuvi, will have no playoff experience. This is the biggest problem that MANAGEMENT, not just BB has let slip through the cracks on the ice!!

Posted by: Kick_Out_The_Illegals | February 16, 2011 1:45 PM | Report abuse

Does anyone really think what the coach/commenators/writers "report" is ground breaking? The fact that there is pre & post game coverage is ludacris. I could only see it beneficial for someone who missed a game or doesn't follow the team, or regularly enough. If you watched the game, you don't need much more. It's stats and comparisons. All of it's fillers for those who gimme, gimme. A coach isn't going to come full force and gut a player to the media, so they give general statements. It's all forced. And the reason they say anything at all is because fans decided they needed this input after games. If a real conversation about someones play needs to be addressed, it'll be a private conversation between coach & player.

But once again, good effort to try and find another thing wrong with BB. All coaches do it with the media. I wouldn't get so frustrated about it.

Also, I don't believe a complete effort results in a win because so many games result in a win by teams who didn't deserve it. Luck does come in to play with hockey. It's not THE deciding factor, but does have it's place. Oh, and so do bad calls :)

Posted by: BKBK | February 16, 2011 6:16 PM | Report abuse

Is there some booth where we trade in those "winning percentages" for a Stanley Cup? Or perhaps more than one playoff victory in 3 years? Or, hell, a team that is competently coached?

But yeah, it's Varly's and Neuvi's fault. Especially Varly, how dare he play like a top 5 goaltender in the NHL this season. We should trade him and Ovechkin for Brodeur. Then the powerplay will start scoring and we'll be able to carry the puck into the offensive zone!

Oh, and FYI, his "defensive strategy" is worthless if he can't generate offense to save his life. Anyone can coach a highly defense-first style. Not anyone can combine that style with an effective puck possession strategy that leads to domination at both ends of the ice. Babcock has consistently been able to do it. Bylsma for one year. Laviolette with the Flyers. Quenneville with the Hawks. At the very least you need a highly effective power play to go along with it, since you need to get goals from somewhere. All Boudreau did was substitute everyone blowing the defensive zone prematurely with everyone trying to stay as far back as possible whenever the other team gets the puck. That pretty much lead to the Caps giving up pucks in the offensive zone as regularly as peewee hockey teams.

Posted by: yellowtail99 | February 16, 2011 8:17 PM | Report abuse

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