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Capitals 4, Bruins 1

Thanks largely in part to a phenomenal effort by their penalty killers -- 11 Caps played nearly two minutes short-handed -- Washington was able to hold Boston at bay during a crucial juncture of the game in the second period and go on to capture a 4-1 win and remain perfect in the preseason.

You can read more about the unit, which managed to thwart almost eight consecutive power-play minutes for the Bruins in the second period and garnered praise from previously reluctant Coach Bruce Boudreau, in the story for tomorrow's hard-copy edition.

Matt Hendricks, who saw 3 minutes 59 seconds of short-handed ice time, made it clear how important it is to keep special teams success in the proper perspective, though.

"It's a real finicky part of the game," he said. "For a week, two weeks you can be anywhere from 95 to 100 percent and it feels great and a week later you're back down to about 50. It's one of those things you've got to continually work on and continually raise your game for two minutes or [more than nine] minutes like we had tonight."

But on to some of the other notes and quotes from the Capitals' latest exhibition victory...

One of the biggest reasons why this win seemed particularly satisfying for the Capitals afterward was that their lineup, which was without some of the team's biggest stars (including Alex Ovechkin, Alexander Semin and Mike Knuble), handled almost a completely full-strength, NHL-ready Bruins roster.

"I think they had a full team," Nicklas Backstrom said. "We did a great job, it was a team effort and the goalies played good. [To kill off all those penalties is] hard work. I think everybody came to play and that's the most important thing."

Said Boudreau: "We were on top of the puck. Our energy was really good tonight, they didn't have a chance to move and when we play that way and you look at the shifts - the shifts were all really short and we're rolling four lines you can accomplish that."

-- There were some creative line combinations again in this contest, but perhaps no more intriguing than the top line of Marcus Johansson, Backstrom and Eric Fehr. It was a group that has never played together previously and featured two natural centers, although Johansson had played left wing previously in the Swedish Elite League.

Despite all that, by the third period they appeared to discover a rhythm that led to several scoring chances and took advantage of mistakes as the Bruins tried to force offense and get back into the game

"Maybe it took us two periods to find each other, but I think it worked out all right," said Backstrom, who added that he believed their best showing came in the final 20 minutes.

-- Two seconds into the contest Hendricks got into a fight with Boston's Gregory Campbell, who hit Ovechkin into the boards awkwardly late in Tuesday's meeting between the clubs.

Hendricks didn't play in that first game against the Bruins, but he saw the hit and wanted to make sure Campbell, and anyone else, knew that the hit on Washington's superstar didn't go unnoticed. "Hockey's an honest game," Hendricks said simply.

-- On a lighter note, Backstrom offered a little insight into what it's like to wear a captain's "C": "It's fun that the coaches maybe believe in me and that kind of thing. So, it's good that I'm 100 percent. Ovie should be worried."

-- Tomorrow's practice has been pushed back to 1 p.m. so be sure to check back for updates then.

By Katie Carrera  | September 29, 2010; 10:44 PM ET
Categories:  Boston Bruins  
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Next: McPhee on Nylander: 'We're looking for the next generation of players'

Comments

@Tom. Correct me if I am wrong but I thought a two-way deal meant he could be sent up and down without having to pass through waivers.

As for the fight while I like that Hendricks is willing to fight guys who do something to our big guys if this was a regular season game and we wanted a message sent King would have been out there. That is why we got him afterall. Handricks could be a good guy to call up if King gets hurt. I see people talk about how he can kill penalities but he was 8th in forward Short Handend TOI/G last year for Colorado. Colorado was 21st in PK% last year so he was a 4th pair guy on a team whos PK wasn't much better then ours. Right now he looks great on the PK but so has Gordon, Steckel, and the rest of the guys. They have killed off every PP so far this preseason and 8 minutes in penalities in around 9 minutes of game time. It could just be that the new more aggressive PK is going to work rather then Hendricks is that great of a PKer. I like the guy but he is someone who no other team wanted this season.

Posted by: icehammer97 | September 30, 2010 12:45 AM | Report abuse

hammer:
i believe waivers has to do with how many years you have been in the league (along with # of games and age - i'm too lazy to go look it up). i think all entry level contracts do not have to go through waivers.
a two-way contract just means you have two different salaries, one at the nhl level and another for ahl. so somebody with a $500k deal might only get $150k if they are sent down to the ahl.

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | September 30, 2010 12:52 AM | Report abuse

No one should be happier tonight than cstanton. He has trumpeted Hendricks I think since before the Caps even signed him to the tryout deal.

I want to say this. It isn't about a willingness to fight; it's about a readiness to stand up.

It's easy to sit behind a computer and criticize a guy who doesn't go out and get his face bashed in for his team. Do any of you want to get punched in the face? He!! no. But is that what Hendricks is doing? No. He's making a statement and standing behind it, and sometimes that's actually the easier thing to do. Because sometimes in life the hard way is the easy way.

Not to put myself on the level with these guys, absolutely not, we all have our jobs to do, but I was in a review once with the president of the company (pretty big company, one of largest in US) and he starts giving me sh!+ because he doesn't like my numbers. Like, I'm not the program guy, I'm the independent cross-check number, and the Kool-Aid drinkers (program guys who want to bid low and win the job) tell him, the Prez, it will take seven quality assurance people full-time to do the work. Just so happens my independent analysis also says 7 (not so hard to do, they are doing it now and they have 7). So the Prez, who wants to bid lower, and thinks five QA are enough (he really has no clue), tells the QA folks to "go to the back of the conference room and drink coffee" until they agree to do the job with five. So like monkees these three quality assurance people go to the back and fill their styrofoam cups with coffee and drink and converse and then, when the meeting resumes, tell the president they can do it for five people.

So the president turns to the poor little check and balance person and says, "They're willing to change from seven to five, I guess that means you will too."

Now, I tell you, when the president is all these many labor grades higher, and you have your family to consider, you want your children fed, you think, but I answer back:

"No, sir, I don't see it that way. It took seven last year, and it's taking seven this year, so there's no reason to assume why it would take any less next year."

The president starts giving me a bunch of crap. "My son could do what you are doing." (I kid you not, he tried that line on me.) I just basically looked at him, finally said if they can do the job with five, instead of seven, show me the two badges of the people you're laying off and I'll reduce the cost. He grumbled.

Of course, it took seven QA people to do the job. Not only was he wrong, I was wrong too, it took more cost than anyone figured.

At least though by standing my ground the corporation lost less money than it would have otherwise.

I have typed out this long-winded story so we can see that everything in life isn't about being punched in the face. There are many other types of obstacles. Some people stand up and fight. Some don't. Matt Hendricks apparently stands up.

He can be on my team anyday.

Posted by: tominsocal1 | September 30, 2010 12:52 AM | Report abuse

Capt: I don't know the ins and outs of these NHL contracts. But, two-way deal on an entry level is obviously different than on a RFA or UFA deal. Examples:

Perreault. He's in the third year of his EL contract. He has a two-way contract, one salary with DC and one with Hershey, and can up and down w/o waivers.

Beagle. He has signed beyond EL, but same thing in essence, due to age and # of games played, he can be sent to Hershey w/o waivers I think.

Aucoin. One-way deal, $500K regardless where he plays, but sent down due to he has cleared waivers. Caps can bring him up, and send him down, until he plays 10 games with Caps, and then he can't go back down w/o waivers again. (I think.)

Willsie. Two-way deal, one salary in DC and a lower in Hershey, but takes waivers to go down and up same as Aucoin. He can be brought up ands sent down throughout the year until he plays ten games with Caps.

Hendricks: Must pass through waivers to go to Hershey, but would then fit under Willsie rules (two-way deal w/waivers).

AGordon: Same as Hendricks.

Pinner: Same too I think.

Anyone knows any better, please help.

Posted by: tominsocal1 | September 30, 2010 1:14 AM | Report abuse

A two-way/one-way deal has absolutely nothing to do with waivers. All it has to do with is $$$$.

Posted by: richmondphil2 | September 30, 2010 1:38 AM | Report abuse

Ok thanks guys. I have never sat down and read the whole CBA and only know the basic stuff and what comes up during seasons. In NHL 11 two way contracts mean you can send up and down without waivers so that is probably where I got the idea that it was the case.

Posted by: icehammer97 | September 30, 2010 1:46 AM | Report abuse

I'm just tickled pink to see one of the boys in red actually take on a guy like
Thornton. Guys like Thornton can just wear you down. (Which is why Matt Cooke had to fight him, or fight the other Pens in the locker room after the game.) DjK won this fight in the the first three punches. Basically keeps Thornton in his cage. Great to be considered a real hockey club after the latest GMGM disaster of "team toughness". GMGM was shortening Bradley's hockey career by years.

Cstanton is right again. Hendricks can play.

Posted by: Hunterforcoach | September 30, 2010 2:13 AM | Report abuse

There should never have been any doubt about Hendricks. He was a great energy guy for the Avs last year, and provided a little offense. The Avs are pretty solid down the middle and up front (especially concerning the bottom 6).

I'm right there with tom when he says that Stecks and Gordo are overpaid, especially considering the amount of decent bottom 6 guys out there, nevermind Hendricks. Gordo and Stecks are more "established", but is there ceiling any higher? Who knows.

Posted by: richmondphil2 | September 30, 2010 2:30 AM | Report abuse

The Caps look hungry and pissed off from last year, good. I just pray that attitude lasts through the playoffs, does not peter out in March or April.

The Caps have a few tough decisions to make about personnel for the year, such as MJ, MP, Eaton, and Hendricks -- good. I wish they had such dilemmas on defense.

Posted by: JIMALLCAPS1 | September 30, 2010 7:07 AM | Report abuse

March or April?? It will probably peter out by November if past history repeats itself.

Cordially,
RBlatch

Posted by: rblatch45 | September 30, 2010 7:25 AM | Report abuse

Yeah, the Caps really took a nosedive in November on the way to the President's Cup...

OR they seemed to peak in Feb and loose a bit of steam in late March and into April

Posted by: JIMALLCAPS1 | September 30, 2010 7:32 AM | Report abuse

I really think they should waive both Steckel and BGordon at this point. There are plenty of cheaper options that have proven themselves throughout camp and the pre-season. Plus that gives more cap space to sign the Dman that everyone wants.

Steckle/BGordon=overpaid

Hendricks/AGordon=bargains

Posted by: PhilR | September 30, 2010 7:40 AM | Report abuse

One thing to consider about Hendricks though. While Hendricks is playing very well this preseason, it is only the preseason. It sort of reminds me when fans of NFL teams get all excited about undrafted free agents during the preseason and talk about how great they are going to be, then almost all of those players do nothing once the real season starts.

Remember, Hendricks was a free agent the entire season and all 30 teams passed on him. There had to be a reason for that. So while I do like how he is playing, I do have some concerns if he can do the same throughout the entire regular season. I mean, if he was such a sure thing you would think one of the 30 teams would've signed him at some point during the summer.

Hopefully teams just overlooked him and the Caps are getting a quality 4th liner and penalty killer.

On Passing Through Waivers:

If the Caps send Steckel down and keep Hendricks then the Caps pay $1.6M overall. If the Caps keep Steckel up and send Hendricks down then the Caps spend about $1.2M overall. A pretty good sized difference.

I really think Hendricks will pass through waivers. If you are one of the 29 other teams, you are thinking "did Hendricks show us anything in those preseason games that we didn't already know of him?" My guess is probably no since it would be tough to put that much weight into 3 preseason games and not his regular season last year. If those teams didn't sign him to a contract earlier I would be surprised if Hendricks preseason output would cause another team to cut a player and claim Hendricks(I think if they claim him Hendricks has to be on the NHL roster for a minimum amount of time).

I am in no way saying that Hendricks will definitely not be picked up. It definitely could happen, but I would think it is more likely than not that Hendricks would pass through waivers without being claimed.

The difference with AGordon and Steckel is that other teams never had a chance to freely acquire either of those, so knowledge of other teams interest in them is lower. It wouldn't surprise me to see a team grab Steckel off of waivers. A decent team looking for a 4th line center with size. He does have good attributes and maybe another team will think they can bring back the 2009 playoffs Steckel.

AGordon, with his low salary, I think he is also a possiblity. A team like Edmonton, the Islanders, the Panthers or Thrashers, etc.(lesser salary teams looking for cheaper players) could be teams that may pick him up.

Posted by: sgm3 | September 30, 2010 7:43 AM | Report abuse

Hendricks played a full year at the NHL level last year so he has proven he can play with the big boys. Would you have seen Steckel or BGordon stick up for a teammate like Hendricks did last night? No way, those guys shy away from the physical stuff and Steckel is completely overpaid and if another team wants his contract who the heck cares? It saves the team 1.1 mil.

And if Ted is worried about paying an extra 400k to make his team better then we have some real issues with this teams ownership!

Posted by: PhilR | September 30, 2010 7:55 AM | Report abuse

Did anyone hear/see the Eliot interview with Olie? It's posted on OFB if you want to listen - it will make your hearts warm to hear what he has to say about the Caps and this region.

Posted by: Thisistheyear | September 30, 2010 8:27 AM | Report abuse

Did anyone hear/see the Eliot interview with Olie? It's posted on OFB if you want to listen - it will make your hearts warm to hear what he has to say about the Caps and this region.

Posted by: Thisistheyear | September 30, 2010 8:27 AM | Report abuse

Not possible. I thought from reading the comments here that the Caps treat all their former players like dirt and nobody wants to be associated with the team.

Olie is nothing but a class act and belongs in the Washington Ring of Fame or Honor or whatever they call it nowadays.

Posted by: dcsportsfan1 | September 30, 2010 8:42 AM | Report abuse

As for Hendricks not being able to play with the big boys...ditto what someone said about playing with the Avs last year and last I checked, it wasnt the Boston Bruins JV squad last night.

Hope we get to see him play tomorrow, as well as Eakin and MJ again. I really hope they give Eakin a shot (at least 9 games).

Also, lets get more trade rumors going...those are fun.

Posted by: SeminAllOverTheIce | September 30, 2010 9:06 AM | Report abuse

I know we have done this before, but I am trying to make lines and it is getting too hard! No matter how I look at it...flash is just not needed! I think it is silly to make him a center, and MJ is really better suited for 2nd line duty than 3rd. So here are my opening night lines...tell me if I forgot someone major!

Ov/backs/knuble
Laich/MJ/semin
Chimera/MP/Fehr
Bradley/BG/King or Gordo
Steckel as extra

Posted by: capscoach | September 30, 2010 9:11 AM | Report abuse

Ovie-Backs-Knubs
Semin-Eakin-Fehr
Chimera-MJ/MP-Laich
Bradley-Hendricks-A Gord-King

Cut/Trade:
Flash
B Gord
Steckel

Posted by: SeminAllOverTheIce | September 30, 2010 9:21 AM | Report abuse

"Hendricks played a full year at the NHL level last year so he has proven he can play with the big boys."

My point was that since he was in the NHL last season, and none of the 30 NHL teams signed him to a one-way contract, there must be some concern about his ability to remain in the NHL. It doesn't meant that he can't play well in the NHL, but that the 30 NHL teams certainly were concerned about something.

So if the other 29 teams were concerned enough to not offer him a contract throughout the entire summer, do you really think Hendricks established himself enough in the 3 preseasons games to overcome those concerns?

"if Ted is worried about paying an extra 400k to make his team better then we have some real issues with this teams ownership!"

That's always easier said when it isn't your money. I hope they are willing to spend whatever, but I also understand the team is a business and their end goal is to make a profit for those who are invested in the team.

"Steckel is completely overpaid and if another team wants his contract who the heck cares? It saves the team 1.1 mil"

I agree. That's why I've stated that I think the way Hendricks makes the opening night roster is if either BGordon or Steckel gets traded(if they can trade him, which they might be able to).

Listen, I'm not against Hendricks and I hope he does well. But lets be realistic about expectations right now.

His play in Colorado was not enough to garner a 1-way deal from any of the 30 NHL teams throughout the summer and he has played a few very good preseason games. Given all the facts, how can you deny that there are at least concerns about his ability?

I hope those concerns were just misplaced, which they might be, but there are concerns nonetheless.

"last I checked, it wasnt the Boston Bruins JV squad last night."

Yeah, did you read what Barnaby said about preseason games? That the young guys and the guys trying to make the team almost always outplay the veterans who are guaranteed to make the team because the veterans just don't care. It's just a simple reality of the preseason in general.

Posted by: sgm3 | September 30, 2010 9:22 AM | Report abuse

The PK is back!! The PK is BACK!!

Posted by: j3rockstar | September 30, 2010 9:29 AM | Report abuse

sgm: The only thing you aren't adding to your equation:

Reverse waivers.

Let's say Caps ask waivers on Hendricks, no one claims and they send him down. Then let's say someone gets injured and they want to bring him up. I'm not exactly sure how that works either, because I know Caps could bring Aucoin up and down until he played ten games, but you might then have a situation where Hendricks could be claimed for a bargain-basement half price.

You are right, though, anyone could have signed him, and didn't, and maybe it's a case where he just fits best with us. On the same token, maybe there's a team out there with lots o' grit but very little scoring (they could use Flash) and another team that could use a guy with good faceoff % (Steckel), so maybe we can find room for Jimi and AG.

With Jimi, DJ and AG, cstanton might start to smile. Squeeze in Pinner or Beagle and we might get a fill grin.

Show me a team with the offensive talent we have and then if we can have some of the toughness of the Dale Hunter-led teams, I will say "Cup favorite." Then add a #1D and I will say, "clear favorite."

Posted by: tominsocal1 | September 30, 2010 9:34 AM | Report abuse

There are lots of reasons guys clear waivers/dont get offered contracts in the offseason. It doesnt necessarily mean the guy isnt NHL caliber or hasnt proven himself. There could be many factors. Not to mention, he is a role player type, which arent always in high demand (unless you live in DC and are part of the fanbase).

Bmo wasnt offered a contract...is he unproven? With the exception of like 3-4 players this off season, the FA market didnt seem very busy for many teams.

Posted by: SeminAllOverTheIce | September 30, 2010 9:38 AM | Report abuse

@tominsocal1

I'm not saying the Caps shouldn't trade Steckel or BGordon to make room for Hendricks. That would be fine with me.

I agree that the way to get Hendricks on is through trading Steckel or BGordon, and I think that is very possible. But if BGordon and Steckel remain on the roster for opening night I would be very surpised if Hendricks is on the roster(I'm assuming AGordon and one of MP, MJ, Eakin remain).

I don't know the rule on re-entry waivers for two-way contracts, but my guess would be that re-entry waivers may only apply to players with certain types of contracts(certain value above minimum). I'm not sure though and it is just a guess. I'm basing this off the fact that I have not seen a minimum, or very low salaried player, get claimed off of re-entry waivers.

Posted by: sgm3 | September 30, 2010 9:41 AM | Report abuse

"Bmo wasnt offered a contract...is he unproven?"

No, he was over the hill.

Posted by: sgm3 | September 30, 2010 9:42 AM | Report abuse

I dont know about anyone else but i kinda like the idea of backie wearing the "C".I think it makes more sense.Just let ovie be ovie and not have to worry about the things that come along with being a captain.Regardless if he wears it or not,ovie will always be a leader on the team.But i think backie is the more suitable choice.I just think ovie could step his game up even more not having the doldrums of being captain.Just a thought.either way,ovies still a great captain and both are leaders anyway.GO CAPS!!!

Posted by: gratefuldid | September 30, 2010 9:49 AM | Report abuse

Just in case anyone is still confused:
Under the current CBA, contract status (one-way/two-way) has no bearing on the waiver status of a player. EA has this wrong in their NHL games. The only thing one-way/two-way means is that under a two-way contract, you get a different salary in the AHL.

Posted by: koalatek | September 30, 2010 9:55 AM | Report abuse

gratefuldid -
I agree with you there, but I doubt that they'll ever strip Ovie of the "C"......and that's fine with me as well.

Posted by: j3rockstar | September 30, 2010 9:56 AM | Report abuse

Ovie-Backs-Knubs
Semin-Eakin-Fehr
Chimera-MJ/MP-Laich
Bradley-Hendricks-A Gord-King

Cut/Trade:
Flash
B Gord
Steckel

Posted by: SeminAllOverTheIce
----

I think you are close.

Ovie-Backs-Knubs
Laich-MP85-Semin
Chimera-MJ-Fehr
Bradley-BGordon-Hendricks
scratches: King, AGordon

Back to Juniors:
Eakin (no need to rush him)

Cut/Trade:
Flash (2.6mil)
Steckel (1.1)

Posted by: FrankM73 | September 30, 2010 9:57 AM | Report abuse

there is no way the caps will be able to trade steckel...his conract is too high for what he does. We are stuck with him.

Posted by: capscoach | September 30, 2010 9:58 AM | Report abuse

Hmm what about Double Captains?

Woaaah, double captains. Double captains all the way...what does this mean....(begins to cry)...oh man, its so beautiful.

Posted by: SeminAllOverTheIce | September 30, 2010 10:12 AM | Report abuse

FULL double captains?????

Posted by: j3rockstar | September 30, 2010 10:33 AM | Report abuse

Hendricks seems like he would be a nice add. that said, why isn't OV able to take his own heat??

Posted by: doughless | September 30, 2010 10:58 AM | Report abuse

Only one captain is permitted. You can have 3 A's if you don't have a captain, but there can only be one captain.

Eakin (Eaton? Really?) goes back to juniors. He's not yet physically mature, despite the awesomeness of his game. Make no mistake, he'll wear chocolate and white next year, but let him dominate the WHL this year and build physical strength and size. He's only 19 - there's no reason to rush him up and every reason not to. Besides, he'd be a victim of the numbers game no matter what.

I'd like to see Hendricks stay, and while I like Andrew Gordon, I prefer Hendricks to him based solely on the pre-season both have had. I have no issue with keeping Boyd Gordon for the PK - we need to have one faceoff specialist, as winning draws is one of the keys to a good PK. We don't need both Gordon and Steckel, and while I love Steckel, I think Hendricks brings something this team really, really needs.

I like what I am seeing with the tweaks right now. I think it'll do nicely and if they can keep this level of intensity up come spring, that we'll be in very good shape.

Posted by: kittypawz | September 30, 2010 11:05 AM | Report abuse

@doughless - Do you *really* want your star player getting into a fight, and breaking his hand or his face?

Posted by: irockthered | September 30, 2010 11:09 AM | Report abuse

"Only one captain is permitted. You can have 3 A's if you don't have a captain, but there can only be one captain. " - kittypawz

It was called a joke. YouTube Double Rainbow, then come back and laugh like me and j3rockstar are.

As for Eakin, I'm not saying rush him, but if he is ready, then dont hold him back. Hence a lot of us would like to see him up for 9 games at least. That way we can still send him back to canadia and then call up someone else.

I stand by my earlier statement, if I had to let Stecks go (B Gord I can do without) to make room for Hendricks and A Gord, then so be it. And Im fine with Flash saying Sbohem to make room for others.

Thanks google, because of you I can get SBOHEM chants going at home games. Sbohem = goodbye in czech. :P

Posted by: SeminAllOverTheIce | September 30, 2010 11:29 AM | Report abuse

@doughless - Do you *really* want your star player getting into a fight, and breaking his hand or his face?


Yea, I do. At least a couple of times. I think it will take the heat off of Ovey from the officials and the league, not to mention the media, if he mans up and takes care of business once in awhile.
There's a guy in Calgary that does that quite nicely who is well thought of.
Cordially,
RBlatch

Posted by: rblatch45 | September 30, 2010 11:33 AM | Report abuse

@doughless - Do you *really* want your star player getting into a fight, and breaking his hand or his face?

Posted by: irockthered | September 30, 2010 11:09 AM | Report abuse

I knew this would be the response. Look, the guys goes out of the way (and often puts himself out of position) to hit or check someone. I can be snide and say knee someone. As discusses last season, he plays reckless frequently. So OV is already risking injury. He plays a physical game (by his own admission) except for the fact that he doesn't seem so eager to finish what he quite often starts. Bradley had to cover for him last year. Now, Hendricks (who is looking for a roster spot) has to take his heat. So i don't want to hear this "he might get hurt" stuff.

Posted by: doughless | September 30, 2010 12:01 PM | Report abuse

@doughless - Do you *really* want your star player getting into a fight, and breaking his hand or his face?

Posted by: irockthered | September 30, 2010 11:09 AM | Report abuse

I knew this would be the response. Look, the guys goes out of the way (and often puts himself out of position) to hit or check someone. I can be snide and say knee someone. As discusses last season, he plays reckless frequently. So OV is already risking injury. He plays a physical game (by his own admission) except for the fact that he doesn't seem so eager to finish what he quite often starts. Bradley had to cover for him last year. Now, Hendricks (who is looking for a roster spot) has to take his heat. So i don't want to hear this "he might get hurt" stuff.

Posted by: doughless | September 30, 2010 12:02 PM | Report abuse

@tominsocal1

Hendricks is subject to waivers on the way down, but not on the way up. It is something to do with his AHL salary being under a certain amount.

Posted by: pstenigma | September 30, 2010 12:19 PM | Report abuse

@doughless

Ovie is a physical player but not a fighter. However, that does not mean he won't fight. He showed a willingness to do so against Downie and would have fought him if Bradley hadn't gotten between them. And no, he wasn't stalling for time so Bradley could get into position. Ovie had no idea Bradley was on the ice.

From what I've seen of Ovie over the years, he doesn't back down; the team might force him to though.

Posted by: pstenigma | September 30, 2010 12:25 PM | Report abuse

Why didnt he go with Campbell? he wants to hit everything on the ice, but when someone he hits takes exceptions he likes to do a lot of pushing. BTW, Downie would have pummeled OV.

Posted by: doughless | September 30, 2010 12:49 PM | Report abuse

he doesn't have to be a fighter, but if you are going to play that style you are going to have to expect that someone is going to call you on it sometimes.

Posted by: doughless | September 30, 2010 12:51 PM | Report abuse

"Yea, I do. At least a couple of times. I think it will take the heat off of Ovey from the officials and the league, not to mention the media, if he mans up and takes care of business once in awhile."

Are you saying that you think that if Ovechkin drops the gloves and fights a couple times, the officials and the league will come down on him less severely when he checks someone in a manner they deem reckless and/or excessive or that causes injury?

I don't see the logic there. Whether Ovi drops the gloves or not will in no way effect his being scrutinized when he throws reckless hits, especially if those hits cause injury.

And I for one don't want our star 50-65 goal scorer risking breaking a wrist/hand/finger by dropping the gloves so he can meet your criteria for manning it up.


Posted by: Hordedog | September 30, 2010 12:57 PM | Report abuse

And I for one don't want our star 50-65 goal scorer risking breaking a wrist/hand/finger by dropping the gloves so he can meet your criteria for manning it up.
------------

That's a great point, and one sometimes overlooked in these parts. The B's had a good goal-scorer IIRC named Al Secord [could be mixing up the name], anyway, he had legit hands, and could light the lump, but he could also fight very, very well. So naturally, other teams would throw out their 3rd-4th liners to try and goad him into fighting, because that was a pairing they'd happily take, every time.

That, and these Canadien kids who come up through the ranks like Downie not only usually know how to fight - on skates - they've been training and practicing it since they were kids.

I don't care how good a skater you are - and my Pops had me on skates before I turned two - throwing and absorbing punches on skates is not easy. (As I've found out to my chagrin more than once.)

Posted by: Timbo_1 | September 30, 2010 1:45 PM | Report abuse

@doughless,
"Why didnt he go with Campbell? he wants to hit everything on the ice, but when someone he hits takes exceptions he likes to do a lot of pushing. BTW, Downie would have pummeled OV."

Because it wasn't a fighting moment. Why manufacture a fight? Ovie's retaliation instinct was to slash Campbell, then he had to deal with Boychuk, then the teams came together to push, shove and tell each other off, then it was penalty time.

Fights don't happen all the time in response to boarding.

Posted by: pstenigma | September 30, 2010 5:16 PM | Report abuse

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