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Open thread: Capitals vs. Bruins

The Washington Capitals (4-1) host the Boston Bruins (2-1) looking for a fifth straight victory with Michal Neuvirth between the pipes. You can chat about the game in the comments below, or join the conversation on Twitter with staff writers Katie Carrera (@kcarrera) and Gene Wang (@gene_wang). See your tweets below by using #caps.

Faceoff: 7:30 p.m., Verizon Center; TV: Versus; Radio: 820, 1500 AM.


By Lindsay Applebaum  | October 19, 2010; 7:25 PM ET
Categories:  Boston Bruins  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Tonight's lineup: Bruins at Caps
Next: Bruins 3, Caps 1: Michal Neuvirth leaves game with the flu

Comments

wonder how many lazy people will complain about the lineups being in a different post then the chat...."ah it's so far away, i have to scroll down!!!"

HAHAH GO CAPS!!!!!

Posted by: capsfan387 | October 19, 2010 7:40 PM | Report abuse

semin has to get credit for a hit there

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | October 19, 2010 7:50 PM | Report abuse

Semin's first hit of the season, and in the defensive zone, no less?

Posted by: stevie_in_gp | October 19, 2010 7:50 PM | Report abuse

They set up that top line against our bottom D for the second time, and it cost us

Posted by: wtf_e_fehr | October 19, 2010 7:57 PM | Report abuse

I would like to see Sloan replaced, thank u.

Posted by: wtf_e_fehr | October 19, 2010 7:58 PM | Report abuse

Love Erskine now. He's mauling people.

Posted by: jakopz | October 19, 2010 7:58 PM | Report abuse

sloan didn't do much to keep that pass from getting through

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | October 19, 2010 7:58 PM | Report abuse

I refuse to get twitter to chat.

Posted by: LloydChristmas | October 19, 2010 7:58 PM | Report abuse

AND WHY ARENT THE LINEUPS UP THERE!

Posted by: wtf_e_fehr | October 19, 2010 7:59 PM | Report abuse

Sloan got to go.

Posted by: LloydChristmas | October 19, 2010 7:59 PM | Report abuse

Sloan used the "pylon" defense on that 2 on 1.

Posted by: jdove80 | October 19, 2010 8:00 PM | Report abuse

I will never twitter chat. They should go back to the old format.

Posted by: wtf_e_fehr | October 19, 2010 8:01 PM | Report abuse

Looked like that 2-on-1 was on Backstrom first and foremost.

Sloan could've done better and he also got caught out of position earlier.

Down 1-0 but I like the effort. Not smart enough play but the effort is there.

Posted by: tmac2yao | October 19, 2010 8:02 PM | Report abuse

Ugly.... real ugly

Posted by: jdove80 | October 19, 2010 8:02 PM | Report abuse

I didnt like Neuvys positioning there

Posted by: wtf_e_fehr | October 19, 2010 8:03 PM | Report abuse

Another goal due to bad D. Neuvy was a little far out of position too.

Posted by: LloydChristmas | October 19, 2010 8:03 PM | Report abuse

More poor positioning in the d-zone from our forwards.

Ovechkin I think this time.

Playing hard is half the battle.

Playing smart is the other half.

Posted by: tmac2yao | October 19, 2010 8:03 PM | Report abuse

sloan has been in deep in the offensive zone a couple of times. Maybe he thinks tonight he is playing forward

Posted by: ebolean1 | October 19, 2010 8:04 PM | Report abuse

I do think our effort has been a bit better.

PULLING NUEVY!>!>!>

Posted by: wtf_e_fehr | October 19, 2010 8:05 PM | Report abuse

Wow Varly in already

Posted by: jdove80 | October 19, 2010 8:05 PM | Report abuse

What happened? We down two already!!!

Posted by: instinct227 | October 19, 2010 8:06 PM | Report abuse

Was Nevuy pulled or is he hurt? He walked to the dressing room. Does that happen when they are pulled?

Posted by: LloydChristmas | October 19, 2010 8:06 PM | Report abuse

can no longer say that Shultz has not been on the ice for an opposition goal

Posted by: ebolean1 | October 19, 2010 8:06 PM | Report abuse

Neuvy must be hurt...

Posted by: joek443 | October 19, 2010 8:07 PM | Report abuse

CAN NOT WAIT to hear BB's reasoning for that pull.

Posted by: wtf_e_fehr | October 19, 2010 8:07 PM | Report abuse

We're just not a fundamentally sound team when it comes to positioning and gap control.

I wonder how well BB teaches that kind of stuff given the lack of improvement in that area over the years.

The effort is there tonight. We're just getting outexecuted.

Play hard. Play smart.

Posted by: tmac2yao | October 19, 2010 8:08 PM | Report abuse

hopefully it's not because of the two goals - they were hardly Neuvy's fault

Posted by: ebolean1 | October 19, 2010 8:08 PM | Report abuse

No, I don't think he's hurt, when they get pulled they're not happy so they go to the locker room to cool off instead of throwing a fit and stewing on the bench. He'll be back out soon.

Posted by: BlondeCapsFan | October 19, 2010 8:09 PM | Report abuse

bad call

Posted by: wtf_e_fehr | October 19, 2010 8:10 PM | Report abuse

Semin has terrific individual defensive potential but he'll never realize it until he learns to know when to say when. Sometimes his problem is not giving up.

Posted by: tmac2yao | October 19, 2010 8:11 PM | Report abuse

Great PK. At least that's working for them

Posted by: instinct227 | October 19, 2010 8:13 PM | Report abuse

Varly makes a few 10 bell saves.

We come back.

controversy stories...

Posted by: wtf_e_fehr | October 19, 2010 8:13 PM | Report abuse

Being pulled after two goals is pretty pathetic. It's not like it's the playoffs. I'll be curious to hear the rationale.

Posted by: LloydChristmas | October 19, 2010 8:14 PM | Report abuse

Have the Caps scored first in any game this season.

Posted by: instinct227 | October 19, 2010 8:16 PM | Report abuse

Come out hard early next pd.

earn some PP's.

CAP-ITALIZE!!!!

Posted by: wtf_e_fehr | October 19, 2010 8:17 PM | Report abuse

Well, tmac, might get what we're (sorta) askin' for: a loss with the right effort.

Posted by: stevie_in_gp | October 19, 2010 8:17 PM | Report abuse

A for effort.

D- to an F for execution.

Our forwards clearly don't seem to have a lot of defensive awareness. They'll put in effort at times but it's not consistent and their positioning is often suspect. Lots of guys often get caught puck watching and not being aware of their man and the spacing of players, starting with Cap'n Ovechkin.

The D has issues, too, but our forwards have to be ranked pretty low on the defensive awareness and accountability scale.

Coaching has to be part of the problem.

Posted by: tmac2yao | October 19, 2010 8:18 PM | Report abuse

I'll take this effort level but I never thought that effort was the sole issue.

You also have to execute and play smart as a team in all zones.

Your GM also has to bring in the right personnel to counter/balance out his run 'n gun one-dimensional coach's philosophy.

I very much believe that the coaching doesn't do enough to get ALL the forwards to understand and develop the right defensive habits and awareness.

Posted by: tmac2yao | October 19, 2010 8:21 PM | Report abuse

Another comeback? Ugh.

Posted by: FloridaCapsFan | October 19, 2010 8:24 PM | Report abuse

Regardless of the score, anyone notice Fehr floating around the ice? He turns away from initiating contact, he stays at least 10 feet back from any scrums for the puck in the corner. Then he does this weird thing in the D zone. Every time, he points to a Bruin player but doesn't cover the player. He'll lazily cover a player near the blue line, but will watch another player go to the net and just point to him. He was doing it in Nashville as well. I haven't seen anything like it before. I haven't seen him skate hard yet.

Posted by: Fletch22 | October 19, 2010 8:26 PM | Report abuse

I see two ways to exploit the Caps from a strategic standpoint:

1. Forecheck us to death - a team that takes this approach has to have a good enough forecheck and ability to backcheck/recover that it's worth risking the Caps getting breakouts going the other way. I don't think a lot of teams are willing or able to do this out of fear of the Caps transition game. The Pens beat us in the playoffs using this style. They had an excellent forecheck and great backchecking recovery by forwards and defenseman alike.

2. The sit back and counter approach - Montreal did it and Boston's doing it tonight. The idea is to wait for the Caps to overcommit and transition the other way. Our forwards are overall fairly crappy backcheckers and don't have a coach that demands the same level of defensive awareness as most other coaches in the league.

The idea is that you need to go to one extreme or the other to be effective against us. Extreme forechecking or an extreme sit back and wait approach. If you go somewhere in the middle or don't do one of those things very well, the Caps will kill you.

We also seem to struggle with speedy teams because I think our speed is overrated. Combine our relatively poor positioning on a team level with the relative lack of speed and quick, disciplined teams are able to exploit our loose play on both ends and tilt the ice, even if they are less skilled.

Posted by: tmac2yao | October 19, 2010 8:29 PM | Report abuse

Feeling pretty negative about this one.

Posted by: FloridaCapsFan | October 19, 2010 8:32 PM | Report abuse

Awww...Neuvy is sick with the flu.

Posted by: nicety251 | October 19, 2010 8:35 PM | Report abuse

Neuvirth had to be pulled after that second goal, he was way out of position. Plus, he is trying to fire the team up.

Mistakes were made during this summer. The Caps are 4 and 1, but let's be honest, they don't look great. This team looks like they are a FEW players away. The only way to get them now is to move assets we don't want to move.

Posted by: underpants2 | October 19, 2010 8:35 PM | Report abuse

I've seen people try to argue that Ovechkin is good defensively because of the highlight play he'll make once ever 5 or 10 games.

I'd rather see him defensively aware and sound positionally all the time and never make those flashy defensive plays.

It's on the coaches.

Posted by: tmac2yao | October 19, 2010 8:35 PM | Report abuse

Watch how Boston's forwards come back for short passes and don't exit the zone regularly looking for stretch passes.

Schultz' turnover a minute ago partially occurred I tihnk because of that BB breakout philosophy.

I think Umberger was right.

Posted by: tmac2yao | October 19, 2010 8:37 PM | Report abuse

ITS TIME!

Posted by: wtf_e_fehr | October 19, 2010 8:38 PM | Report abuse

5 on 3

improve

Posted by: wtf_e_fehr | October 19, 2010 8:41 PM | Report abuse

BB should have given Neuvy the night off if he really does have the flu... pulling him after two goals even though he was outta position on the second one wasn't really fair to him.

Posted by: joek443 | October 19, 2010 8:42 PM | Report abuse

Horrible PP

Posted by: jdove80 | October 19, 2010 8:42 PM | Report abuse

Seems the Caps are playing in circles. Unreal, back to back PP and they can't score.

Posted by: instinct227 | October 19, 2010 8:43 PM | Report abuse

MA
JO

Posted by: wtf_e_fehr | October 19, 2010 8:44 PM | Report abuse

1st goal and point

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | October 19, 2010 8:44 PM | Report abuse

Nice play by 90.

He's very composed for his age.

Posted by: tmac2yao | October 19, 2010 8:44 PM | Report abuse

MoJo. 1st NHL goal

Posted by: jdove80 | October 19, 2010 8:44 PM | Report abuse

jimi made that possible by getting the puck back behind the net

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | October 19, 2010 8:45 PM | Report abuse

Thank you young one

couldnt have come at a better time

Posted by: wtf_e_fehr | October 19, 2010 8:45 PM | Report abuse

That dude is in every third commercial these days . . .

Posted by: stevie_in_gp | October 19, 2010 8:47 PM | Report abuse

It's pretty awful to watch our forwards total lack of awareness in the D zone. So much full-fledge puck watching without any apparent thought as to positioning.

It's a problem with the D, too, but they are too often left trying to pick up the slack.

Posted by: tmac2yao | October 19, 2010 8:47 PM | Report abuse

erskine has been a hitting machine tonight - 7 so far

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | October 19, 2010 8:48 PM | Report abuse

For a bottom 6 player who just unpacked his suitcase.

Matt Hendricks makes his presence felt.

Posted by: wtf_e_fehr | October 19, 2010 8:48 PM | Report abuse

I dont like Erskine on the PP

not just because of that penalty!!

Posted by: wtf_e_fehr | October 19, 2010 8:49 PM | Report abuse

There's one of Ersk's weaknesses. Plenty of grit when he's on his game but subpar stick and positioning at times.

Posted by: tmac2yao | October 19, 2010 8:49 PM | Report abuse

Bonehead!

Posted by: jdove80 | October 19, 2010 8:50 PM | Report abuse

last time i give erskine any credit before he should get it

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | October 19, 2010 8:50 PM | Report abuse

OUTSTANDING KILL

Posted by: wtf_e_fehr | October 19, 2010 8:53 PM | Report abuse

Nice!!!

Posted by: instinct227 | October 19, 2010 8:53 PM | Report abuse

Well at least the PK doesnt suck this year.

Posted by: jdove80 | October 19, 2010 8:53 PM | Report abuse

Semin could be an ELITE two-way player with better discipline. He has the natural ability and anticipation skills to be Datsyuk-like if he could fix a few loose screws.

Posted by: tmac2yao | October 19, 2010 8:55 PM | Report abuse

oops, i meant that i dont like Erskine on the PK.

Posted by: wtf_e_fehr | October 19, 2010 8:57 PM | Report abuse

Semin could be an ELITE two-way player with better discipline. He has the natural ability and anticipation skills to be Datsyuk-like if he could fix a few loose screws.

Posted by: tmac2yao
You're right he has the skills of Datsyuk but the work ethic is sometimes not there. He gets lazy sometimes.

Posted by: jdove80 | October 19, 2010 8:58 PM | Report abuse

We need to stop taking these stupid penalties

Posted by: instinct227 | October 19, 2010 9:00 PM | Report abuse

He gets lazy sometimes.

Posted by: jdove80 | October 19, 2010 8:58 PM

i'm not sure i would call it lazy - but he does have lapses of focus at times

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | October 19, 2010 9:01 PM | Report abuse

Like the more aggressive PK much more than last few years style.

Posted by: jdove80 | October 19, 2010 9:04 PM | Report abuse

Much happier with this effort tonight no matter the result or how we play the rest of the way.

There have been breakdowns but the Caps are playing harder and even executing better overall than in recent games that they've won.

Posted by: tmac2yao | October 19, 2010 9:05 PM | Report abuse

come on PP - do it this time - before the period ends

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | October 19, 2010 9:05 PM | Report abuse

Lets go Caps. Tie it up.

Posted by: instinct227 | October 19, 2010 9:05 PM | Report abuse

Carlson needs to work on the "keep in" on the PP

see Mike Green

Posted by: wtf_e_fehr | October 19, 2010 9:08 PM | Report abuse

It's hard to go from playing without enough effort and not executing to doing both in one game. The 4-game winning streak was deceiving.

I've seen enough positive tonight that I'm satisfied given the total crap we'd seen in recent games despite the wins.

Still wondering if BB can guide this team to responsible play in all 3 zones and doing the little things correctly and consistently.

Posted by: tmac2yao | October 19, 2010 9:09 PM | Report abuse

im a little mad now

that goal, varly didnt deserve

Posted by: wtf_e_fehr | October 19, 2010 9:27 PM | Report abuse

I SURE HOPE WE GET BETTER ON DRAWS

WE WERE GOOD ON DRAWS WHEN WE SUCKED!!!

Posted by: wtf_e_fehr | October 19, 2010 9:34 PM | Report abuse

YOU TELL EM - WTF!!

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | October 19, 2010 9:36 PM | Report abuse

it was not meant to be

not our night

Posted by: wtf_e_fehr | October 19, 2010 9:43 PM | Report abuse

this is a night where you miss a mike green

Posted by: wtf_e_fehr | October 19, 2010 9:46 PM | Report abuse

Didn't Erskine have some serious concussion issues a few years back? It scares the crap out of me when he fights...especially a heavyweight like Lucic.

Posted by: Satts13 | October 19, 2010 9:47 PM | Report abuse

what the fehr - nice D

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | October 19, 2010 9:49 PM | Report abuse

It could've been meant to be if Ovechkin and Backstrom didn't both make very costly defensive mistakes in the 1st period.

The effort was there tonight.

The execution was better for stretches.

Still, that's how it goes. Both of those first 2 defensive mistakes are easily avoidable with just a little better awareness.

Posted by: tmac2yao | October 19, 2010 9:51 PM | Report abuse

good game played by the B's

we really need to show them something next time!!!!!!

Posted by: wtf_e_fehr | October 19, 2010 10:01 PM | Report abuse

Boston is a far more structure and disciplined team. As they add talent up front they will become a better team than the Capitals because of that better attention to detail and smarter play which is the product of a better coach and systems.

Some of our forwards are just as horrible defensively as they were 3 years ago. How could that not be partly on the coaching?

A coach that understands and preaches defense simply does not allow that kind of stuff to happen on a regular basis.

Posted by: tmac2yao | October 19, 2010 10:03 PM | Report abuse

Boston is a far more structured and disciplined team. As they add talent up front they will become a better team than the Capitals because of that better attention to detail and smarter play which is the product of a better coach and systems.

Some of our forwards are just as horrible defensively as they were 3 years ago. How could that not be partly on the coaching?

A coach that understands and preaches defense simply does not allow that kind of stuff to happen on a regular basis.

Posted by: tmac2yao | October 19, 2010 10:03 PM | Report abuse

I hope this game makes them angry.

Posted by: FloridaCapsFan | October 19, 2010 10:05 PM | Report abuse

I don't think Mike Green would've made much of a difference tonight.

Posted by: FloridaCapsFan | October 19, 2010 10:07 PM | Report abuse

Remember that goal that Mtl scored last season where one of their forwards just skated right through Ovechkin and Backstrom as if they weren't even there. Ovechkin and Backstrom barely even tried and that was in the playoffs.

Bad habits die hard.

Good coaches kill bad habits no matter what caliber of skill he has at his disposal.

People will point that some of these guys had a more defensive-minded coach before Boudreau. They were also a lot younger and a lot less developed.

It's time for this team to find a coach that teaches the total game on an individual and team basis.

Boudreau can not do that.

They may work harder than ever for him this season as we approach the playoffs but effort isn't enough. You have to play the right way in all 3 zones. Yup, "play the right way" and "do the little things."

You will be hearing that stuff until the end of the BB era.

Posted by: tmac2yao | October 19, 2010 10:08 PM | Report abuse

Tmac, are you Glen Hanlon's son?

Posted by: stevie_in_gp | October 19, 2010 10:10 PM | Report abuse

I pin this loss on Backstrom and Ovechkin and, by extension, Boudreau.

I'm glad the team played hard tonight and that's part of the equation but our 2 highest paid forwards completely drifted off, leading to Boston's first 2 goals.

Sure, Boston made defensive mistakes, too, but the point is that they have proven to know how to play in their end and the neutral zone, forwards and defensemen alike. Their coach demands it.

Boston will be even better as they develop/acquire more talent. How quickly Seguin develops will be interesting to watch.

Posted by: tmac2yao | October 19, 2010 10:13 PM | Report abuse

This team will always be relatively flawed compared to other playoff teams with McPhee and Boudreau at the helm.

Neither of them have the tools to take this team to the next step. McPhee is not good at building a balanced roster, he swings and misses too often in free agency and he and his team are entirely overrated in terms of drafting.

Boudreau is a glorified player-friendly, AHL coach who only teaches one side of the game and doesn't know how to chew into star players or develop their weaknesses.

Posted by: tmac2yao | October 19, 2010 10:19 PM | Report abuse

You'd think that after Weber skated in behind a clueless Ovechkin oh, about 5 or 6 times in the last game that the coach would chew into him. It didn't even take a period for it to happen again and it wasn't the only time it happened tonight. Ovechkin has made zero improvement to his defensive game and weaknesses under Boudreau.

Posted by: tmac2yao | October 19, 2010 10:22 PM | Report abuse

It goes well beyond Ovechkin but he's our highest paid player.

He's a ball of energy, athleticism, strength and talent that doesn't think the game very well for an elite player.

He needs guidance to take the next step and become smarter and more complete.

He aint' gettin' it with Boudreau who just lets him do what's fun and what he wants with surely less accountability that he'd get elsewhere.

Every passing season, Ovechkin is losing mental development time under this one-dimensional coach and system.

And the same goes for a lot of other players and the team as a whole. Some players need more coaching and guidance than others and they aren't learning the total game in this environment.

Posted by: tmac2yao | October 19, 2010 10:30 PM | Report abuse

Tmac are you the new cstanton? feel free to head on over to any other blog. the overwhelming negativity is what is killing this blog and driving members to other venues, we have a very good but flawed team - top 5 easy - give the PROS a chance to figure it out. SO the line up for next season is You as Coach and Cstanton as GMGM ?

Posted by: gkhinc | October 19, 2010 10:58 PM | Report abuse

Ov was double and triple teamed most of the night, which kept other guys opened who didn't do a whole lot. It definitely wasn't Backstrom's best game. He didn't set up too many plays I thought. Other than Laich and maybe Chimera, everyone else was just sorta taking shots from the circles, especially Semin. Just wasn't a very structured offense tonight. Everyone was sort of doing their own thing, a lot like the Montreal series. They usually don't do well with that approach.

Posted by: LloydChristmas | October 19, 2010 11:00 PM | Report abuse

Other teams are "figuring it out" while we watch a talented core fail to develop and be built around correctly due to the philosophical issues and incompetence of our coach and GM.

Posted by: tmac2yao | October 19, 2010 11:05 PM | Report abuse

Does anyone know what time practice is tomorrow? I want to go...I haven't been to one in a while...who all is likely to skip the practice?

Posted by: vwjettacup6 | October 19, 2010 11:44 PM | Report abuse

@gkhinc

How much play off hockey have you really watched ? Be honest. Tmac2yao is talking about what we need to do as a team ON DEFENSE to not golf early again. WE need to focus on team defense, which BB does not, or we will not win the cUp. I love my Caps, but I've seen too much playoff hockey to believe this style will win the cUp. The transition to a team defense emphasis must start now to be ready for the playoffs. We will lose to the Pens if we do not get our forwards playing defense.

I love Bruce's story. I love what he did for us post-Hamlin. But, this style and his inability to mold players will cost us a real shot at the cUp. tmac2you is right. I'm all about a cUp at this point. The entire league talks about our need for a style change. They see the cUp level talent. It's just very frustrating. Seeing Syd lift the cUp again is gonna' drive me nuts !!!

Posted by: Hunterforcoach | October 19, 2010 11:44 PM | Report abuse

HUNTER FOR COACH !!!!!!!!!!!!!

Posted by: Hunterforcoach | October 19, 2010 11:46 PM | Report abuse

Hunterforcoach:
yoU shoUld check oUt how yoU spell cup - coUld there be an issUe with yoUr keyboard?

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | October 20, 2010 12:00 AM | Report abuse

@captkirk

You seem to know hockey. Do you really think our present free wheeling style can get us to the cUp finals? Be honest. Yes, that is a BIG "U" for cUp.

Posted by: Hunterforcoach | October 20, 2010 12:07 AM | Report abuse

Did Cstanton1 spontaneously compust after his capscoach exchange?

Posted by: Hunterforcoach | October 20, 2010 12:08 AM | Report abuse

Went to the game tonight. Definitely a stinker.

1) If Neuvy were sick, he should have taken the night off. It's not like they lacked a decent backup in goal. Yes, Neuvy's been lights out all year but if he were ailing and queasy and dizzy, he wasn't going to do the team a whole lot of good.

2) Should Tim Thomas change his name to Tim Thomas Halak? He definitely halaked us. We had a jillion shots on goal and nada to show for it. (Guess Boston and Thomas did a great job of studying the playoff highlights for tips on how to beat us.)

3) Green is certainly missed. Our D-corp is definitely thin in talent.

4) Note to all the Boudreau detractors around here. Who would you suggest as the coach to hire?

5) To keep our perspective, at the current rate, the Caps will end up winning 55 games and losing 27 which will be 110 points and enough to make the playoffs.

Posted by: CapsFan75 | October 20, 2010 12:28 AM | Report abuse

You seem to know hockey. Do you really think our present free wheeling style can get us to the cUp finals? Be honest. Yes, that is a BIG "U" for cUp.

Posted by: Hunterforcoach | October 20, 2010 12:07 AM

yes i do. this team is as good or better than any team the caps have had imo.
i do believe the can increase their chances a lot if:
a) the get a stable 2C - meaning one that has enough skill to get semin and laich the puck and can play decent defense.
b) aquire (at minimum) a true 2nd pair dman (better to have a bunch of 2nd pair d than having 3rd/4th pair dmen). he wouldn't have to be a bone cruncher - but someone that is not afraid to hit, can clear the crease and have decent puck moving skills (skating with and passing the puck).
c) have the forwards (all lines) commit a lot more to playing team defense.

i think the top 5 teams (or so) in the league have about an equal chance at the cup. if the caps want to separate themsevles - they should work on those things.
tonight they seem to have the effort but not enough focus - against nashville it appeared to be the opposite.
i do think that part of the problem is BB - he is the one that must provide the motivation and get the players to focus on the details of the game. i think BB can do this - as they had grit and effort when they pulled out the division win the year he took over for hanlon. that 'intensity' has not been consistant since then.
these aren't hard and fast requirements for winning the cUp - just because they don't exist now (or are rarely exhibited) on this team does not eliminate them from contention.
i'd like to see gmgm makes some moves but i understand business some - and i don't think ted wants to risk the future for a 'non' guaranteed one shot at the cup. he sacrificed a few years (very low season ticket holders and attendance) to build a team that has a shot at contending for years to come. every fan of the caps wants them to win the cUp - but some fans just don't care that it is a business. my stance has been and always will be that i have no say in how the team is run but i will root for them every shift, period, game and year - and hope for the best come the playoffs - even if they addressed all of their needs there is no assurance of winning the cup.

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | October 20, 2010 1:29 AM | Report abuse

Tmac is what you get when you run cstanton1 off the blog. All the cliches, none of the knowledge. STEW IN IT!

Posted by: ablake70 | October 20, 2010 1:35 AM | Report abuse

Will you all just calm down. We are SIX games into the season... I mean jeeeez. Start saying this crap in January if it applies... In fact I want this team to struggle early so they can deal with adversity. But in the meantime... RELAX!!!!

Posted by: Tikkanen08 | October 20, 2010 5:12 AM | Report abuse

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