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Boudreau Declines to Name Game 2 Starter

The big question facing the Caps went unanswered this morning.

Coach Bruce Boudreau said he knows which goaltender -- veteran Jose Theodore or rookie Simeon Varlamov -- will get the nod on Saturday. But he wasn't prepared to share that decision with reporters just yet. Boudreau also said he had not informed the goalies of his decision.

"You guys won't find out," Boudreau said. "You guys are asking, and I'm not divulging anything."

Both Theodore and Varlamov were on the ice for a very sparsely attended optional practice at KCI. Theodore spent a lot of time talking to goaltending coach Dave Prior, just 12 hours after he accepted the blame for the Caps' 4-3 loss to the Rangers in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference quarters.

"In the playoffs, that's the beauty of it -- you have to be able to bounce back quick," Theodore said. "I always think about the things I need to do better, like I do every game."

What were some of those things, Jose?

"I don't want to get into the technical part, but just being able to challenge more," he said. "I like to be able to come out of my crease a little more and challenge the shooter. Yesterday, I thought I was a little passive and wasn't challenging like I can."

Theodore was referring specifically to the first and fourth goals.

He also said he's not worried about Boudreau making a switch.

"It's the first game, so I don't really know what you're referring to," he said, growing a little testy with the line of questioning. "It's 1-0 in the series. I've been down 3-1 in a series and came back and won. So I think you're jumping the gun a little bit."

Perhaps there will be some clues tomorrow as to which goaltender will play. But Theodore sounded confident that he'll see No. 60 when he looks at the lineup Saturday morning.

Boudreau, however, was harder to read. When asked about his comfort level with Varlamov, he said: "He was 4-0-1. The game he lost against Buffalo, we put three of them in our own net. He has played in the [KHL] and he's played in the world championships in front of big crowds. So it's not like he's going to be a star-struck young guy if we went with that decision."

By Tarik El-Bashir  |  April 16, 2009; 12:36 PM ET
 
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Next: Video: Moving Past an Ugly Loss

Comments

I don't want to get into technical part, but just being able to challenge more," he said. "I like to be able to come out of my crease a little more and challenge the shooter. Yesterday, I thought I was a little passive and wasn't challenging like I can."


Challenge the shooter like Varlamov does? Brilliant Jose, brilliant!

Posted by: lylewimbledon | April 16, 2009 12:40 PM | Report abuse

Tarik, it's 4-3 not 4-1 loss.

Posted by: fnralch | April 16, 2009 12:42 PM | Report abuse

I knew we were in trouble when the between 2nd and 3rd period video featured a makeover of Theodore's garage and three sets of golf clubs were prominently displayed. Theodore must have in the back of his mind that tee times will be easier to get in mid-April than early-June.

Posted by: HistoryBoy | April 16, 2009 12:45 PM | Report abuse

The BlackHawks 5.5 million dollar back-up is interested in starting game 2 for the Caps.

Posted by: SA-Town | April 16, 2009 12:46 PM | Report abuse

4-1 Loss? It's even worse than I thought!

Posted by: VTDuffman | April 16, 2009 12:48 PM | Report abuse

@ SA-Town:
OH HOW I WISH THAT WERE TRUE/POSSIBLE.
everyone asks me why i'm so hard on theo as a new goalie, when i warmed to huet so quickly. the fact is that, while i disliked huet at first (who didn't? he replaced godzilla!) HE PROVED HIMSELF. he stood on his head for the team that acquired him, and he made a flawless first impression on the team, the coaching staff, and the fans. theo's first impression was god-awful, and his inconsistencies continue to disappoint. when i see him out there, it looks like he just doesn't want to be there, and the team just doesn't trust him and to be frank, neither do i.
i'm harsh on theo because, at least with this club, he is NOT nhl playoff material. it's the big show buddy- either step up or go home. varly would be glad to take your place

Posted by: jess4caps | April 16, 2009 12:52 PM | Report abuse

The BlackHawks 5.5 million dollar back-up is interested in starting game 2 for the Caps.

Posted by: SA-Town | April 16, 2009 12:46 PM |

Yeah, but i thought everyone here wanted their 7.+ mil starter.

I mean Khabi was on waivers earlier this season and the caps didnt get him?!?! GMGM sucks. BB sucks.

Posted by: richmondphil | April 16, 2009 12:53 PM | Report abuse

When I first read the headline I laughed, thinking the BB just wasn't going to start anyone. No gang! No goalie!

Posted by: saintex | April 16, 2009 12:53 PM | Report abuse

I'd much rather have Theo than Huet.

No disrespect to the frenchman, as he did carry us last year, but he's never won a 1st round.

Posted by: richmondphil | April 16, 2009 12:55 PM | Report abuse

ok getting tired of talking about this already. it's only Thursday.
so how bout we talk about the other games?
I hate em, but the Pens look good. they crash the net and it works for them (fancy that). NJ proved that the regular season doesn't mean a thing anymore, and frustrated a gassed canes team.
I watched the blues/van game; now THAT was some great goaltending! The blues hung in there and gave van a run for their money. Both teams are very very fast.

Posted by: oo7 | April 16, 2009 12:55 PM | Report abuse

Can we get another update on what movies Johnson is watching?

Posted by: lylewimbledon | April 16, 2009 12:56 PM | Report abuse

Huet sucks. seriously folks, take a deep breath.

Posted by: doughless | April 16, 2009 12:56 PM | Report abuse

I think that if we'd picked up the Bulin Wall on waivers it would have cost us at least $3.5m of his contract, assuming halfsies with the 'Hawks. The grass is always greener.

Theo is going to give up one crap goal a game. If he keeps it a that, we'll be fine. Unfortunately, last night it was (at least) two.

I think we should all get together for a beer and relax it bit. Is it nerve-wrecking? Yep, it't the playoffs. What if you knew (even if we don't) that the Caps would win this in six? Would one game be such a big deal?

Breathe....breathe....one....two....

Posted by: saintex | April 16, 2009 12:57 PM | Report abuse

Well, ask and you get your answer (re: Johnson).

If I were coach, Theo's in net. He's got to earn the position period by period. And Schultz is in the box - press box. I'd put him in the cooler but that's supposedly cruel and unusual punishment.

And whoever said there's no fighting in playoff hockey needs to check out the clips on Pen-Philly game.

Posted by: Greg S. | April 16, 2009 12:58 PM | Report abuse

My comment was supposed to be a stab at Huet NOT being a better option...He is a 5.5 million dollar BACK-UP...what a joke Huet is at that price...

Posted by: SA-Town | April 16, 2009 12:58 PM | Report abuse

@oo7, Pens are looking good. The Devils win to open is more interesting because everyone ('experts') picked the Canes to win that series; they may, but the Devils laid down a marker. The second round in the East is going to be war for the four teams that lace them up.

I think the Van/St.L series is going to be a lot of 2-1 and 1-2 games - great goaltending and not overly thrilling offenses...it'll be good to watch.

Posted by: saintex | April 16, 2009 1:00 PM | Report abuse

I picked up on your sarcasm, and my Khabi on waivers comment was sarcasm as well. I thought the GMGM sucks and BB sucks helped give that away.

:)

Posted by: richmondphil | April 16, 2009 1:00 PM | Report abuse

Bruce has two hard decisions to make: not only will he have to figure out who starts in net (i think it should be theo on a very, very short leash) - but also who is going to replace jeff schultz in the lineup. he is a disaster on skates. it wouldn't matter if we had patrick f'n roy in net if our d wind up on their arse at critical junctures in the game. Schmutz has to go!

Posted by: dingram3 | April 16, 2009 1:00 PM | Report abuse

Simeon Varlamov and Karl Alzner should be in the lineup for the Caps.

Theodore and Jeff Schultz had absolutely stunning poor performances in a home playoff game.

You really telling me that Alzner would have been faked out of his shoes as Schultz was by an average talent like Dubinsky?

Bruce - follow your own advice and go with the players that are playing well.

Stop favoring guys that haven't earned the trust.

Posted by: leopard09 | April 16, 2009 1:01 PM | Report abuse

And whoever said there's no fighting in playoff hockey needs to check out the clips on Pen-Philly game.

Posted by: Greg S. | April 16, 2009 12:58 PM |

You mean that whole big 1 second fight at the very end of the game that got the Flyers in trouble? Well the fighters didn't get in trouble, but Carcillo did.

so much fighting eh?

Posted by: richmondphil | April 16, 2009 1:02 PM | Report abuse

Boudreau needed to mix things up on the PP.

Our big guns were breathing hard at the end.

Posted by: greener1 | April 16, 2009 1:02 PM | Report abuse

Theo OUT = Varlamov IN; Schultz OUT = Alzner IN.... simple!

Posted by: dsphvywght | April 16, 2009 1:05 PM | Report abuse

Theo hasn't proved himself? He got us into the playoffs with room to spare...He doesn't want to be here? He went out of his way to show interest in the Caps last summer and jumped on the contract and chance to play in D.C. Kind of embarrassing to say something like that. Shows your level of knowledge. Maybe just being quiet would be a good idea if you don't know what your saying.

Posted by: cappies | April 16, 2009 1:10 PM | Report abuse

Ok guys, we're not bringing Alzner up. Just put that out of your brain. Pothier will probably be in over Schultz next game and we'll take it from there.

I read BB as saying he's starting Theo again. The game isn't until Saturday and even though Varly has put up some nice numbers, I think he would want to watch him in pratice once more before deciding to yank the goalie at this point.

Posted by: oldtimehockey | April 16, 2009 1:11 PM | Report abuse

Yeah simple lets bring in Alzner so he can have that deer in headlights look like all the first timers had last year. Alzner over Pothier? Genius. Please take over the coaching job from BB we are desperate for your knowledge and dedication.

Posted by: cappies | April 16, 2009 1:12 PM | Report abuse

saintex, (thank you,brother) I'm shocked that van banks on the sedums so much. They could have gotten two or three guys for the price of one Sundin. Luongo makes that team bonafied, though. I've always liked Vancouver, but the last couple Yeats theyyve been worthless. weird mngt. Yet, they're right about one thing: if your goalie only let's in one freakin goal, you only need to score two.

The hockey literati are a little too full of themselves. Sure, the canes were hot, but counting NJ out like they did was stupid. Broduer cooled off after winning the record. so what? so did green. it's marty freakin brodeur! They only barely lost out on 2nd place. They were still 3rd of 15, ya know? I'm not saying they're gonna win, but counting them out is a little much. christy canyon is old, but in the end I'd still be grinning. heh. not sure where that came from.

Posted by: oo7 | April 16, 2009 1:12 PM | Report abuse

The plainly obvious fact is that Theo is not an NHL goalie anymore. Maybe a sparingly used backup, but I'm not even sure about that. Whatever happened to him since he won Vezina / MVP is irreversible. Whether it's mental (lack of confidence) or not being able to adjust to the new way of playing in the NHL he's useless now. He's proven it beyond any reasonable doubt this season. Boudreau, get Varly in there before we're done.

Everything that I was dreading happened in game 1. Instead of proving everyone wrong Theo proved everyone right. I can't think of a goalie playing worse than he did last night in a playoff game. We'd have had a better chance with a night stand in net.

He might do well in a rec league where people can't shoot hard or get the puck up off the ice. That's about all he's good for now.

People who say stupid stuff like I'd rather have Theo than Huet must be on drugs. Huet was unbelievable for us last year. Theo has been the opposite. Chicago is a different situation this year and has nothing to do with us. Khabibulin is an excellent goalie and was put in a situation where he had to really prove that again so was extremely motivated.

The fact that Theo USED to be good is meaningless now. You must be the same people who kept defending Olie when he was sucking just because he USED to be good. You have to look at reality the way it is now, not hope and pray that a goalie will get back to what he used to be 5 years ago. Theo is done in the NHL. I guarantee you that if he were put on waivers this year no team would claim him. If there is any way we can buy him out I'd love to see that happen. Let him retire or finish his career in the Swiss or French league.

Posted by: ranndino | April 16, 2009 1:14 PM | Report abuse

Hey. Gloves were dropped, punches thrown, and a penalty called. Whether it's a second or 20, it's still a fight. Maybe not a good one, but there you go. Anywho -

We don't need Alzner up here right now. If we get an injury on D, then bring him up.

If Theo's going to let one in a game we should be fine. Everyone in the NHL knows this team's built on offense, then offensive defensemen, and stick someone between the pipes. The summer's options for net were a lot of crap or junk. We got the junk that can occasionally be good.

Posted by: Greg S. | April 16, 2009 1:14 PM | Report abuse

Someone may have already made this comment, but I can't figure out why Schultz is playing over Pothier. Does anyone know? Pothier is just a much better defensive player, and has a lot more experience. Rusty from a long layoff or not, I don't think he gets beat on the goal like Schultz did.

Posted by: SouthsideFFX | April 16, 2009 1:14 PM | Report abuse

*sedins. I'll just day twins from here on out.

Posted by: oo7 | April 16, 2009 1:15 PM | Report abuse

I'm glad to see Theo is still confident in his ability to take this team farther down the road. I fully expect to see JT60 in net Saturday. I don't think BB pulls him this early in the series.

Posted by: 28_is_amazing | April 16, 2009 1:18 PM | Report abuse

Theo isn't NHL level now?

LOL.

Posted by: richmondphil | April 16, 2009 1:18 PM | Report abuse

@ranndino

really? theodore can't play anymore? is that why he won 30 games this year and backstopped this team to a division win and the #2 seed in the conference? No, he's not the best goalie, and no, he did not play well yesterday, but to say he's not an NHL goalie anymore is just silly.

Posted by: sirbobalew | April 16, 2009 1:19 PM | Report abuse

Khabi was on waivers and no one took him...randinno's logic tells me that Khabi is not NHL level now.

Posted by: richmondphil | April 16, 2009 1:20 PM | Report abuse

Also, Gerber (LOL) was placed on waivers and he was picked up.

Gerber is definetely NHL ready and better than Theo and Khabi..by ranndinno's logic.

Posted by: richmondphil | April 16, 2009 1:21 PM | Report abuse

Brian Pothier
Karl Alzner
Tyler Sloan
Staffan Kronwall
Bryan Helmer
Sean Collins

Equals defenseman who should be ahead on the depth chart above Jeff Schultz...

Im telling you he has compromising pics of some people in this organization.

6'6 and he plays like he's 5'6.

If he wasnt 6'6 and instead he was 6'1 he wouldnt even sniff this league.

Posted by: ButterSchultz | April 16, 2009 1:21 PM | Report abuse

the JT hangover is really getting old. i hope we don't have to keep rehashing until saturday.

Posted by: doughless | April 16, 2009 1:23 PM | Report abuse

Theo lets in 4 and Lundy lets in 3...

Isn't it weird how a difference of one goal can turn a player from a Veinza Finalist (3 time) to a "not NHL Caliber Goalie?"

Posted by: VTDuffman | April 16, 2009 1:23 PM | Report abuse

in, theo did not win 30 games. the caps did. ovechkin, green, backstrom and semin did. Theo let in 3-4 goals a game and was ranked below 30 meaning a number of backups were better. The only reason he won 30 is because the offense scored more than he allowed. Call a spade what it is, fellas.

Posted by: oo7 | April 16, 2009 1:24 PM | Report abuse

the JT hangover is really getting old. i hope we don't have to keep rehashing until saturday.

Posted by: doughless | April 16, 2009 1:23 PM |

What do you expect? We will be here refuting inane statements until we either Win and shut them up or are knocked out and they all come with their " I TOLD YOU SO " posts.

Posted by: richmondphil | April 16, 2009 1:25 PM | Report abuse

SouthsideFFX, not sure, but Bruce seems to believe in assigning players to types. Maybe Pothier would be a Jurcina or Poti replacement in his mind.

Posted by: koalatek | April 16, 2009 1:25 PM | Report abuse

Yeah ranndino, because Huet was so "brilliant" in last year's playoffs.

He's such a tremendous goaltender that he's a backup now.

Posted by: CapManJ | April 16, 2009 1:26 PM | Report abuse

No VT.. but an 80% save percentage versus a 91% save percentage does

Posted by: ButterSchultz | April 16, 2009 1:27 PM | Report abuse

http://hfboards.com/showthread.php?t=631061

This board sucks, but the thread is hilarious.

Posted by: richmondphil | April 16, 2009 1:27 PM | Report abuse

richmondphil:

guess you just can't win. there is always our PP and PK to talk about. those might have some impact on the outcome of the game/series.

Posted by: doughless | April 16, 2009 1:28 PM | Report abuse

For a while last night I thought Schultz looked okay. He sort of hit a couple of people (more than his usual gentle nudging), made some decent defensive plays... and then as the game wore on, he started to look like the old Schultz that we know and hate. Totally indecisive and painfully slow. That final horror show where he got faked out of his jock strap and fell, was just the icing on the crappy cake. You'd think the guy would get more comfortable and more confident as the game wore on and start to play better, not the other way around. I really don't understand why BB has such a blind spot when it comes to this guy.

Posted by: capsfan26 | April 16, 2009 1:29 PM | Report abuse

"in, theo did not win 30 games. the caps did."

But, Theo lost last night, not the Caps?

Interesting Logic.

Posted by: VTDuffman | April 16, 2009 1:30 PM | Report abuse

in, theo did not win 30 games. the caps did. ovechkin, green, backstrom and semin did. Theo let in 3-4 goals a game and was ranked below 30 meaning a number of backups were better. The only reason he won 30 is because the offense scored more than he allowed. Call a spade what it is, fellas.

Posted by: oo7 | April 16, 2009 1:24 PM

Let's be honest 007, Theo plays behind a team that leaves him out to dry on many,many occasions. NO GOALIE playing in this system will have stellar numbers especially since we have D-men like Schultzie doing ballet impressions instead of his job.

Posted by: CapManJ | April 16, 2009 1:31 PM | Report abuse

@Richmondphil,

Let's be fair though, Gerber still sucks. He played pretty well in TO after getting picked up, but if any team thinks he's there #1 guy they're in for a long season.

Posted by: oldtimehockey | April 16, 2009 1:33 PM | Report abuse


I have never seen another team's PK let Antropov, let alone anyone, walk into the slot like that. Someone said it was from a bad angle....no, he started from a bad angle and our skaters just let him have the slot.

How much space did we give Naslund on his goal? And why did Poti just stand in front of Theo like a retard instead of either engaging Naslund or getting out of the way so Theo can see it.


Let's focus on these two critical mistakes that led to goals. Our PK needs adjusting.

Posted by: richmondphil | April 16, 2009 1:34 PM | Report abuse

I take offense to that 5'6 comment. I'm 5'6 and I am way better than Jeff Schmutz

Posted by: moltzjo | April 16, 2009 1:35 PM | Report abuse

Tarik-- The Washington Capitals outplayed the New York Rangers for most of the night. They outshot them by a wide margin, dominated them in the faceoff circle and edged them in hits.


really tarik, they edged them in hits? hmmm..not according to the official hit counter. The Caps had the edge after period 1, and the Rangers outhit them by a 2 to 1 margin after that.

Posted by: cstanton1 | April 16, 2009 1:37 PM | Report abuse

Let's be fair though, Gerber still sucks. He played pretty well in TO after getting picked up, but if any team thinks he's there #1 guy they're in for a long season.

Posted by: oldtimehockey | April 16, 2009 1:33 PM |

That's exactly my point. Gerber sucks and is borderline "NHL" level. I mean, he spent most of his season in the AHL.

My sarcastic points were that being picked up on waivers don't mean anything. And if we did put Theo on waivers now (is that even possible?), no one would get him anyway because after the deadline any acquisitions via waivers cannot play in the playoffs.

Posted by: richmondphil | April 16, 2009 1:37 PM | Report abuse

capmanj, that is correct and your honesty is appreciated. still, theo didn't steal any games and give the caps a win. He was decent in the shootiut, but who cares about that? three no shootiut on the playoffs and schultzs error gave him a shootiutchance and he let it in shortside.

Poti? a number 4 or 5 at best. always has been. Pothier too. And erskine. and jurcina. so there's a lot of being left out to dry, tone sure. But not enough to let him off the hook so easy. If Johnson hadn't been injured, Theo WOULD be a backup. "I'm better in the second half." Then give back half the money.

Posted by: oo7 | April 16, 2009 1:38 PM | Report abuse

I think they had us beat by 9 hits.

I was distraught by the tailing off of our energy after the first..

Posted by: richmondphil | April 16, 2009 1:40 PM | Report abuse

Having Pothier in last night would not have meant diddly. Schultz believe it or not actually does a coupla things better than Brian. And Pothier doesn't take the body either. Neither does Alzner. So unless you bring up Dovgan that one play by Dubinsky (great move btw) likely still ends up as a goal.

That being said, I hope to never see big dumb Schultz in a uniform again. Why Bruce continued to play him after that is mindboggling. He looked nervous as hell for the rest of the 3rd and totally fluffed a shot on net. The kid has no intestinal fortitude.

Posted by: cstanton1 | April 16, 2009 1:40 PM | Report abuse

Jose Threeormore is finished!!He plays small in nets. Varlamov plays bigger and I don't think that Varlamov would be any worse. Even Brent Johnson whose a career back up is much better than JT. You cannot lose starting Varlamov. Brian Pothier should be playing and Schulz should be watching. How do you commit yourself toward the boards. You have control of the angle between you and the goalie what the hell was Shultz thinking. That's a stupid mistake you make in the juniors.

Posted by: houndskins | April 16, 2009 1:40 PM | Report abuse

Jose Threeormore is finished!!He plays small in nets. Varlamov plays bigger and I don't think that Varlamov would be any worse. Even Brent Johnson whose a career back up is much better than JT. You cannot lose starting Varlamov.

Posted by: houndskins |

really? you cannot lose starting varlamov? i think the buffalo sabres would beg to differ.

Posted by: sirbobalew | April 16, 2009 1:41 PM | Report abuse

I think they had us beat by 9 hits.

I was distraught by the tailing off of our energy after the first..

Posted by: richmondphil | April 16, 2009 1:40 PM | Report abuse

I'll say this again. If the Caps play a 60min game they can beat almost anyone in a series. But there's no point in talking about that really since this team has a very difficult time stringing together a 3 period effort. Its not going to happen. They'll win one or two games and still lose the series.

For my money, I'd rather see Chris Clark, Brashear and (insert Schultz replacemnt) in the lineup. There were about 5 forwards who didn't even show up last night to play.

Posted by: cstanton1 | April 16, 2009 1:42 PM | Report abuse

here's an interesting chart:
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/sports/caps_nhl/includes/capschart15.html

Ovechkin didn't have a shot after the 13-minute mark of the 3rd period.

On a side note, I know Backie doesn't shoot that often, but he's gotta put that puck on the net on the powerplay. He has a very underrated shot, and he has to sell the pass and get it on net quickly, rather than attempting the slap pass he was doing yesterday.

Here's hoping Theo picks it up in game 2. I don't know if I want to see Varly in nets for game 3 at MSG down 2-0 in the series.

GO CAPS!!

Posted by: virkulous | April 16, 2009 1:42 PM | Report abuse

Can Pothier handle playoff hockey at this point? One solid check, and he might be done. I guess we will see when/if he gets in there.

Posted by: richmondphil | April 16, 2009 1:43 PM | Report abuse

Tarik -

Thanks for the ongoing coverage.

Would you mind asking Bruce whether he honestly thinks Schultz is capable of playing playoff hockey? Personally, I'd rather see Kronwall in the line-up. Someone who actually plays defense. Schultz' career in skates should be limited to Sesame Street on Ice!

Posted by: dingram3 | April 16, 2009 1:43 PM | Report abuse

scratch the Dovgan reference -- Staffan Kronwall is the one who should be up here ahead of Schultz. And if McPhee had drafted Kronwall instead of Schultz, he would be up here.

politics man.

Posted by: cstanton1 | April 16, 2009 1:44 PM | Report abuse

I don't think Pothier is any kind of savior for this team.
If you look at how the defense played - Mo, Green, and Erskine brought an honest game. Erskine was actually very good. Jurcina wasn't bad. Poti and Schultz were like two turds in a toilet. They just floated.

Posted by: cstanton1 | April 16, 2009 1:45 PM | Report abuse

Let's focus on these two critical mistakes that led to goals. Our PK needs adjusting.

Posted by: richmondphil | April 16, 2009 1:34 PM | Report abuse

Amen! A decent PK and we win the game, despite goaltending (or how about not taking the penalties to start with?)

Posted by: mikebrady1 | April 16, 2009 1:46 PM | Report abuse

I agree with leopard09.. Alzner should be up here playing in the playoffs. For as big as Shultz is, he doesn't play physical and is a big liability out there. I loved the way Morrisson played. That hit behind the net was gorgeous! But they do need a reliable D-man out there. Green played like an actual defenseman layin' the lumber too. If not for the (non-call) interference of Avery, they never would've scored that first goal and who knows what could've happened.

With that said, Jose still should have stopped the 1st,2nd, and 4th goals. Start warming up Varly. But maybe with Jose gettin' pissed about all the questioning, maybe he plays lights out now.

Posted by: ovys8 | April 16, 2009 1:47 PM | Report abuse

I don't expect Bruce to put Semyon in, but I do expect him to remain circumspect until the game starts. Just as we saw Drury and Brashear warming up before the game, only to be scratched, both coaches will attempt to keep the other side guessing.

Rangers prepared very well for Theo -- they knew he covers the ice level well, and each goal was topside

Posted by: Sonyask | April 16, 2009 1:48 PM | Report abuse

Oh and why do the Caps insist on putting the flippin' puck over the glass multiple times in a game.. Especially Federov. His old arse should know better than that..

Posted by: ovys8 | April 16, 2009 1:48 PM | Report abuse

@ cappies:
i really resent your insults to my knowledge. i'm entitled to my opinion, just as you are entitled to yours. i DON'T feel that theo wants to be here, he was "eager" to sign the contract because his current team showed very little interest in keeping him. and ovechkin, green, semin, and the gang got us into the playoffs. if anything, theo kept us from ending the season with more than 108 points. he's not the worst we could have, obviously, but a dribbler stopped here and there could have added up to a lot in terms of points, and we ended up behind the b's in just single digits; we might have even gotten the 1st seed. he may not be horrible, but we need a better goalie than the one he's proven himself to be- his inconsistencies work against him, and they work against our team. he's shown himself capable of making brilliant saves, but he has yet to show himself capable of RELIABLY making ordinary saves regularly
@vtduff:
it's not the one goal difference that makes theo so much worse than lundy, it's the sv: lundy let in 3 of i think 32 shots. theo let in 4 of 22. HUGE difference.

Posted by: jess4caps | April 16, 2009 1:50 PM | Report abuse

cstanton1- Exactly. It's not bad enough Schultz got beat (it happens) but the fact that he got beat so BAD and fell down like a lil' B is the part I have a hard time with. And against Dubi??? Really? I mean, really? Like I said earlier, I wanted to laugh but I just couldn't :o(

In any case, it's just ONE game. If we're down 2-0 then I think it's time to start questioning our g/d.

Posted by: 1800DrWong | April 16, 2009 1:50 PM | Report abuse

That's weird to me, because Theo has always been known for a quick glove and very slow ice movement; his lateral movement. His butterfly lets in so many 3-5-7 hole goals in, its kind of ridiculous.

Posted by: richmondphil | April 16, 2009 1:51 PM | Report abuse

Oh and why do the Caps insist on putting the flippin' puck over the glass multiple times in a game.. Especially Federov. His old arse should know better than that..

Posted by: ovys8 | April 16, 2009 1:48 PM

Stupid....

we only had 4 penalties that game! 2 of them were delay of game, and the gamewinner was scored on the tail end of our last one.

Stupid...

Posted by: richmondphil | April 16, 2009 1:52 PM | Report abuse

Why laugh at Dubi? He did work for them last year in the playoffs, and he has a good amount of deking skills.

I just hope Dive-insky doesn't show himself again this year.

Posted by: richmondphil | April 16, 2009 1:54 PM | Report abuse

I want to see Avery carried out on a stretcher.

Posted by: TheSmurfs | April 16, 2009 1:55 PM | Report abuse

Also, everything I read seems to indicate that Drury will be in Saturday.

Posted by: richmondphil | April 16, 2009 1:57 PM | Report abuse

I'm willing to bet the caps take more delay of game pens than any one else in the league. it's unreal.
oh, I hate to say it because I love him, bit Fedorov looks tired.

Posted by: oo7 | April 16, 2009 1:58 PM | Report abuse

If you read the latest Post you could see BB explaining that the Buffalo game that Varlamov lost was the fault of the defense on 3 goals. I'm not saying are defense did not give up great opportunities to the rangers, but at least stop one of them!!!!Sometimes inserting a goalie who has no fear like varlamov who nobody has not much video tape to look at might be a good think. Ex. Cam Ward.

Posted by: houndskins | April 16, 2009 2:02 PM | Report abuse

I know no one wants to speak ill of the offense, considering our other issues...

That said, is the inability to score 5-on-5 concerning to anyone else? 2 of our 3 goals were PP, and that's only because we had 7 PP opportunities.

Why can we score 5-on-5?

/sorry, goalie conversation getting old.

Posted by: VTDuffman | April 16, 2009 2:02 PM | Report abuse

ranndino is probably right about Theo, though it sounds harsh. At best, he is inconsistent and the starter goalie, especially with a young team with a weak defense, has to be a rock of consistency.

Yes, the team leaves him out to dry sometimes, but great goalies save teams during lapses giving them time to recover. Theo lets the team out to dry more than they do him, anyway, in the sense of giving back the lead to opposing teams after the forwards struggled hard for an equalizer.

I aldo agree with ranndino on Huet. I don't know what he is doing in Chicago but he rescued the Caps and became the missing piece we needed to make it to the playoffs. Had we stayed with Kolzig, we would not have reached the playoffs. He may have had a different season had he stayed with us. Of course, it serves him right for rejecting us.

The question now is what BB is to do. I agree with some writers who were worried that if he used Varly too soon and he bombed he would have no back up plan to fall on. But to me, his refusal to name the starter somehow signifies that he may indeed go with Varly.

I also think that Schultz is out by the way.

Can anyone tell me why BB and GM were so confident that we had goaltending under control a while ago, that they did not pursue a really great goalie by the trade deadline?

Posted by: caraveli | April 16, 2009 2:03 PM | Report abuse

I'm selling all my tickets and moving to somewhere I can cheer on a number #7 or #8 seed with a good goalie and trap defense. It's SO stimulating.

Posted by: saintex | April 16, 2009 2:04 PM | Report abuse

One word: Henrik.

We had the scoring chances even strength, just could not get it past him.

And unfortunately this conversation just leads us back to goalies...lol.

Posted by: richmondphil | April 16, 2009 2:04 PM | Report abuse

I don't know, Phil; yes, the absence of quick lateral movement accounts for a lot of goals, but those weren't the ones he faced last night. One on one Theo can be good down low and protects the ice. Most of what I see 1 on 1 goes in high, just as it did last night. He doesn't do well on the upper corners and I think that's the book on him.

Posted by: Sonyask | April 16, 2009 2:04 PM | Report abuse

Hey we got a bad goalie and terrible fans. That's as consistent as it gets.

Posted by: cappies | April 16, 2009 2:06 PM | Report abuse

ranndino and caraveli agree about our goaltending situation?!?!?!

What a shocker.

Posted by: richmondphil | April 16, 2009 2:06 PM | Report abuse

I don't know, Phil; yes, the absence of quick lateral movement accounts for a lot of goals, but those weren't the ones he faced last night. One on one Theo can be good down low and protects the ice. Most of what I see 1 on 1 goes in high, just as it did last night. He doesn't do well on the upper corners and I think that's the book on him.

Posted by: Sonyask | April 16, 2009 2:04 PM |

Oh, I understand. I'm just saying traditionally, Theo has been known for his quick glove and weak lateral movement.

Also, most skaters are going to go top shelf on a 1on1. Unless that goalie is like Vokoun and leaves that 5 hole open to bait them.

I'm not denying his top half coverage of the net was bad, but traditionally Theo has been said to have a quick glove. The question is, where was it last night?

Posted by: richmondphil | April 16, 2009 2:09 PM | Report abuse

"One word: Henrik."

In this case, yeah...but this isn't something new. The lack of 5-on-5 scoring has been a problem for at least a month, if not longer.

It doesn't take a great goalie to stop a puck that's hitting him square in the chest. He's very good, but the number of audible "thumps" you could hear from shot hitting him right in the middle of that california king mattress he calls a chest piece was staggering...

It's been happening for a while now against lesser teams with lesser goalies. It's just easier to look past because Lundy is that good normally.

Posted by: VTDuffman | April 16, 2009 2:09 PM | Report abuse

If you read the latest Post you could see BB explaining that the Buffalo game that Varlamov lost was the fault of the defense on 3 goals. I'm not saying are defense did not give up great opportunities to the rangers, but at least stop one of them!!!!Sometimes inserting a goalie who has no fear like varlamov who nobody has not much video tape to look at might be a good think. Ex. Cam Ward.

Posted by: houndskins | April 16, 2009 2:02 PM | Report abuse

And Varly benefited from Buffalo missing some wide open nets -- so it sort of balanced out. Don't get me wrong, I hope Varly will be great in the future, but he sure didn't look ready yet in that game.

Posted by: mikebrady1 | April 16, 2009 2:10 PM | Report abuse

Amen! A decent PK and we win the game, despite goaltending (or how about not taking the penalties to start with?)

Posted by: mikebrady1 | April 16, 2009 1:46 PM | Report abuse


how do you get a decent PK? just snap yer fingers or what? I mean thats like saying, if we just had a Pronger type back there we're good to go. It doesn't work like that. There was a real tangible reason our PK unit sucked this year. Its because they suck. You don't take a bad PK unit and suddenly make it good just because you wish it so.
Remember, we lost game 7 last year because our PK unit couldn't kill the Poti tripping call. This problem has existed and will continue to exist because our personnel and system is the same.

Posted by: cstanton1 | April 16, 2009 2:12 PM | Report abuse

5 on 5 we did pretty well overall regular season -- 8th in the League at 1.10 F/A ratio. Rangers were 23rd at .90.

Posted by: Sonyask | April 16, 2009 2:13 PM | Report abuse

It doesn't take a great goalie to stop a puck that's hitting him square in the chest. He's very good, but the number of audible "thumps" you could hear from shot hitting him right in the middle of that california king mattress he calls a chest piece was staggering...

It's been happening for a while now against lesser teams with lesser goalies. It's just easier to look past because Lundy is that good normally.

Posted by: VTDuffman | April 16, 2009 2:09 PM |

Well, I would just say the reason the shots are going right into his chest is because his angles are perfect.

Like I said, our chances are there.

Maybe a better assessment would be that we don't create enough traffic in front of the goalie.

Posted by: richmondphil | April 16, 2009 2:14 PM | Report abuse

From my seat, it looked that the Caps' main problem 5-on-5 (and on the PP for that matter) was too much cross rink passing and too many one-timers. Not everything needs to go 90+ mph, especially when most are being sent high.

Posted by: koalatek | April 16, 2009 2:15 PM | Report abuse

Here is the point: if Theo is going to let in 4 goals on 21 shots, there is no reason NOT to start Varlamov. Theo has no upside at this point in the year.

It's hard to imagine Varlamov stopping fewer than 80% of his shoots (17/21)

The Capitals dominated that game in every statistical category and just plain looked better, but still lost.

There is nothing to lose by playing Varlamov.

Posted by: benz9 | April 16, 2009 2:15 PM | Report abuse

Our PK was actually operating at near the best in the league for the last 2 months.

They have the ability to tighten it up, I don't understand why they don't. They aren't going to transform into the Rangers PK unit or something, but there is definite room for improvement there with the skaters we have.

Posted by: richmondphil | April 16, 2009 2:15 PM | Report abuse

I know no one wants to speak ill of the offense, considering our other issues...

That said, is the inability to score 5-on-5 concerning to anyone else? 2 of our 3 goals were PP, and that's only because we had 7 PP opportunities.

Why can we score 5-on-5?

/sorry, goalie conversation getting old.

Posted by: VTDuffman | April 16, 2009 2:02 PM | Report abuse


We can't score 5 on 5 because we rely heavily on our PP to help us win games. So when we play the #1 ranked PK in the league, our PP won't do well and our 5 on 5 problems will continue to plague us like they plagued us all year. Flash, Nyles Semin, Fedorov and Fehr don't do a lot of good things at even strength. They don't work the boards well, they cough up the puck, they're just not effective at even strength. They have a hard time maintaining any kind of puck possession. Bradley and Steckel do a better job of bottling up the other team's D than do our 2nd and 3rd lines

Posted by: cstanton1 | April 16, 2009 2:16 PM | Report abuse

Scared to start a rookie inexperienced goalie? See Cam Ward or Steve Mason this year.

Posted by: lylewimbledon | April 16, 2009 2:16 PM | Report abuse

Theodore had a 2.87 GAA this season. Quit talking like he "always" lets in 3 or 4 goals. Statistical impossibility.

I'm not defending the chump - he played pretty poorly last night. People just have a tendency to overreact around here.

As for the Huet haters, you guys are also overreacting. If you think Huet was awful for us in the playoffs last year, I encourage you to watch the highlights again. He made several 10 bell saves, and our shoddy defense lost most of the games last year. That being said, he stunk up the beginning of this season, so I'm totally cool with him backstopping another team.

Oh, I have few defenses for Schultz though. He showed how inexperienced and nervous he was last night. I have nothing against the kid, but if he was nervous last game he's going to be a wreck this next game. He should probably sit in the press box on Saturday.

Posted by: Raber | April 16, 2009 2:17 PM | Report abuse

I think people are being a bit too harsh. We are in the playoffs. We are second in the Eastern conference. And who is the goalie who got us there? Not Olie. Not Huet. Not Johnson. Give Theodore some credit.

Posted by: fmjk | April 16, 2009 2:17 PM | Report abuse

Again, 5on5 scoring did not plague us all year.

Posted by: richmondphil | April 16, 2009 2:19 PM | Report abuse

Our PK was actually operating at near the best in the league for the last 2 months.

They have the ability to tighten it up, I don't understand why they don't. They aren't going to transform into the Rangers PK unit or something, but there is definite room for improvement there with the skaters we have.

Posted by: richmondphil | April 16, 2009 2:15 PM | Report abuse


Not when Bruce decides to employ Tomas Flasher on the PK. Sorry, I know Bruce loves his offensive skill guys but he overdoes it with Semin and Flash on the PK. The only player who need to be on the PK who are our skill guys is Backstrom and possibly Ovy. Even Fedorov was stinking up the joint last night, he looked old and tired. None of that tenacity we saw last season. But to continue to play Flash and Semin on the PK is asking for trouble and frankly not fair to the other players on this team.

A lot of this is on Boudreau's head. He makes the personnel decisions as to who plays where.

Posted by: cstanton1 | April 16, 2009 2:19 PM | Report abuse

Always or not, he doesn't have a whole season to balance out his inconsistencies...he has three more games.

Posted by: benz9 | April 16, 2009 2:19 PM | Report abuse

"5 on 5 we did pretty well overall regular season -- 8th in the League at 1.10 F/A ratio. Rangers were 23rd at .90."

This is a problem that's (by my recollection) reared its ugly head recently - only in the last month or so (maybe it started during the losing streak)...

Posted by: VTDuffman | April 16, 2009 2:19 PM | Report abuse

Yeah enough with the goalie talk. Get over it. It's time to be a fan not a pest.

Posted by: cappies | April 16, 2009 2:20 PM | Report abuse

Also, he only faced 21 shots. The Rangers were an awful offensive team this season. Suddenly opening on the road to a packed Verizon center they become an offensive Juggernaut.

I might buy it if they exploded for 35 or 40 shots, but 21?

Posted by: benz9 | April 16, 2009 2:21 PM | Report abuse

28.6% on the PP last night against one of the top PK teams in the league. Not only that, at least four or five of those were completely dominating and the puck was in the zone for nearly the entire two minutes. There isn't too much passing - the point of the PP is to keep the puck in the zone, keep if moving, tired out the PKers, don't them swap players, and then score. There were three or four really good shot that didn't get past Henrik last night or the numbers would have been staggering. The screaming desire of the Verizon fans for players to "shoot" every damn minute of the PP is comical. You can score in the first ten seconds of the PP or the last 10 - it doesn't matter.

There is no way you could have watched the PP last night and thought there were issues - it was very, very strong.

Now, we can talk five on five, but the Caps PP isn't on the table for anything. Don't reach.

Posted by: saintex | April 16, 2009 2:22 PM | Report abuse

It's hard to give the goalie credit when we out-scored opponents during the regular season in 6-5, 7-6 games. Not going to get too many of those games in the playoffs...that is what worried me about this team.

Posted by: lylewimbledon | April 16, 2009 2:22 PM | Report abuse

Again, 5on5 scoring did not plague us all year.

Posted by: richmondphil | April 16, 2009 2:19 PM | Report abuse


bottom line, we're not a good enough 5 on 5 team when we play a good defense. We rely heavily on the PP to win games. And against the #1 ranked PK, our PP isn't going to be as effective as it was in the reg season.

Frankly, we NEED to play better at even strength if we hope to win this series. Look what happened last night after they took the lead. They shut us down easily the rest of the way, we didn't generate jack in the last few mins when we should have been buzzing around and making their goalie make tough saves. Instead they boxed us out, kept us to the perimeter and forced us to take bad angle shots or they blocked and cleared the puck.

Posted by: cstanton1 | April 16, 2009 2:23 PM | Report abuse

No, you are right Duffman. Our even strength scoring has did disappear for a while there, but I thought it came back right before the playoffs.

This is the only reason why I said last night that we need to convert better on our PP than 2/7. Yeah, that's good, but when we are not getting the job done like last night, we need our PP to get it done.

Posted by: richmondphil | April 16, 2009 2:23 PM | Report abuse

It's hard to give the goalie credit when we out-scored opponents during the regular season in 6-5, 7-6 games. Not going to get too many of those games in the playoffs...that is what worried me about this team.

Posted by: lylewimbledon | April 16, 2009 2:22 PM | Report abuse

Really? Can you give me the dates of those 7-6 and 6-5 games? I think I missed them

Posted by: mikebrady1 | April 16, 2009 2:24 PM | Report abuse

That last for for koalatek. Maybe I should have said "every second".

Rangers won't score four again for the rest of the series.

Posted by: saintex | April 16, 2009 2:25 PM | Report abuse

I've said it before; I'll say it again. The way you people turn on players (on a dime!), I wouldn't start Varlamov next game on a BET.

Here's what I see happening: He gets out there. The Rangers actually aim at the net. He overcommits, winds up on the wrong side of the net, and gives up a huge juicy rebound that the Rags pick up and flip into the completely open other side of the net while Varlamov is over on the wrong side, still picking himself up. We lose - even if it's close - and you lot will turn on him like a pack of bloody jackals!!

No, thank you. Theodore's been the victim of y'all's vitriol all bleeping season. I don't want to see Varlamov turn into the hated thing Theo obviously has become.

I have full confidence in Jose Theodore's ability to backstop us all the way.

As for Pothier - Hasn't anyone noticed that Boudreau is rotating the defense? Pothier is playing every other game. He'll be in on Saturday, and someone else will not be. Only Boudreau knows who that is, and I am not going to try and tell him how to do his job.

Show a little confidence.

Posted by: irockthered | April 16, 2009 2:26 PM | Report abuse

I don't understand the goal of complaining?

Posted by: cappies | April 16, 2009 2:27 PM | Report abuse

Two things -

1. Our 5-on-5 play has to improve. We get zone time, but don't generate many chances even stregnth.

2. We all knew our D and goal tending was suspect going into this. I don't think we're going to be able to improve our D or change our style of play. Our system last night wasn't that bad. It gave up 3 odd man rushes that I counted, all of which were goals.

It is up to our goal tender to save some of those.

Theo is a SHORT GOALIE!! That will not change in two games. The book is defenetly out on him. What makes it worse is that he goes to the butterfly quickly, making him even shorter!!

Forget TOP SHELF PEANUT BUTTER being open, with Theo, you have the WHOLE PANTRY exposed!!

The way we played last night, I'm confident Varly would have made some of those stops, at least the ones that went into the upper corner. Varly simply covers more net, and that also makes the shooter think a bit more for shot placement.

We can't have any worse goaltending IMO by putting Varly in.

The upside is Varly gets confident and we ride him.

What's the downside by starting him game 2? He lets in soft goals? We already do that with Theo. Valy has played in huge games before. This is nothing new to him. I'd rather start him in front of our home crowd than at MSG down 2 games.

Posted by: floms | April 16, 2009 2:28 PM | Report abuse

I'm starting to get a "winning cures all ills" feeling. Win Sat. and all these problems go away. Right now, everything seems bad, and the things that aren't bad "aren't good enough."

Except Faceoffs. KILLED on faceoffs!

Posted by: VTDuffman | April 16, 2009 2:29 PM | Report abuse

@cstanton1 - No, no, NO! You do not EVER put Ovechkin on the penalty kill. He will go out there, skate his heart out, and put himself in front of a shot and be out for a game or two because he HAD to block that shot with his foot. No thank you. I'd rather keep him on the power play and leave him OFF the penalty kill!

Boudreau DID that as an experiment early in the season, and the first puck Ovechkin stopped with his heel was the end of the experiment right there.

Besides, if you put Ovechkin on 5-on-5, 5-on-4, 4-on-5 - when does he rest?? He cannot be out there 60 minutes a game!

Posted by: irockthered | April 16, 2009 2:29 PM | Report abuse

Um..the downside is that Varly loses, loses all confidence and his NHL career is ruined.

It has happened before. Goalies are not skaters. There is much more going on.

Posted by: richmondphil | April 16, 2009 2:30 PM | Report abuse

@jess4caps - Actually, from interviews, etc., Theodore had his agent listening for rumblings from Washington, and said yes almost before the phone was hung up. He wanted to come here, and has said so himself.

Posted by: irockthered | April 16, 2009 2:31 PM | Report abuse

Avery was seen today shopping in Georgetown for end of season deals on scarfs and hats.

Posted by: SA-Town | April 16, 2009 2:33 PM | Report abuse

The Rangers actually aim at the net. He overcommits, winds up on the wrong side of the net, and gives up a huge juicy rebound that the Rags pick up and flip into the completely open other side of the net while Varlamov is over on the wrong side, still picking himself up.

As opposed to the dribbler that is sure to pass through Theodore's pads several more times before the series is through?

Posted by: benz9 | April 16, 2009 2:33 PM | Report abuse

"Um..the downside is that Varly loses, loses all confidence and his NHL career is ruined.

It has happened before. Goalies are not skaters. There is much more going on."

They're like pitchers in baseball, and to an extent, young QBs in the NFL. Get them out there too early, and risk ruining them forver.

Posted by: VTDuffman | April 16, 2009 2:34 PM | Report abuse

As for Pothier - Hasn't anyone noticed that Boudreau is rotating the defense? Pothier is playing every other game. He'll be in on Saturday, and someone else will not be. Only Boudreau knows who that is, and I am not going to try and tell him how to do his job.

Show a little confidence.

Posted by: irockthered | April 16, 2009 2:26 PM | Report abuse

you think Bruce is immune to mistakes ?

the only reason Pothier will be replaced Sarge is because we lost gm 1 and Sarge was responsible for the final goal. Bruce would not be rotating any defensemen otherwise. He rotated them in the reg season to give Pothier a chance to play incase he needed him in the playoffs. But he only will insert new players into the lineup after a LOSS. Thats what his playoff rotational philosophy is based on.

Posted by: cstanton1 | April 16, 2009 2:35 PM | Report abuse

It's funny even after every gripe has been stated 100 posts ago there's still people repeating themselves over and over. We get it. We need to improve. Gotcha! Thank you! At least we have an extra day off. Everyone should be positive tomorrow right? LOL We have terrible fans. It's so embarrassing.

Posted by: cappies | April 16, 2009 2:36 PM | Report abuse

I don't understand the goal of complaining?

Posted by: cappies | April 16, 2009 2:27 PM | Report abuse

Its called critical analysis. Get a clue. By your logic, what is the point of discussion at all ? I mean, we can't change anything no matter what we say or do, right?

Posted by: cstanton1 | April 16, 2009 2:37 PM | Report abuse

Uh correct

Posted by: cappies | April 16, 2009 2:38 PM | Report abuse

Pothier being in scares the hell out of me. I think he is a much better defensive man than Schultz, but like I said, one solid check and he could be done. forever.

Posted by: richmondphil | April 16, 2009 2:40 PM | Report abuse

Hey, when's the first game of the playoffs?

Posted by: saintex | April 16, 2009 2:40 PM | Report abuse

Man, the saintex misses windjammer.

Posted by: saintex | April 16, 2009 2:41 PM | Report abuse

People are frustrated and feel the need to vent. It's cathartic and healthy, and this is as good a forum for it as any. It's also a great forum for sharing one's joy when the team wins, and hopefully we'll be doing a lot of that from here on out.

Posted by: capsfan26 | April 16, 2009 2:41 PM | Report abuse

defensive man...

Posted by: richmondphil | April 16, 2009 2:42 PM | Report abuse

It's funny even after every gripe has been stated 100 posts ago there's still people repeating themselves over and over. We get it. We need to improve. Gotcha! Thank you! At least we have an extra day off. Everyone should be positive tomorrow right? LOL We have terrible fans. It's so embarrassing.

Posted by: cappies | April 16, 2009 2:36 PM | Report abuse

The fan part of me will be cheering on the Caps at my loudest on Saturday , regardless of who is in goal or on defense. Engaging in discussion about players or strategies (or deficiencies) doesn't take anything away from supporting the team when they are on the ice. But if it helps --- Lets Go Caps!

Posted by: mikebrady1 | April 16, 2009 2:42 PM | Report abuse

@richmondphil,

I understand that Pothier is taking a risk when he plays, and he could be injured again. But he wants to play. And if you don't let him play because you're worried he might get hurt, then he's done forever already. Its his choice and the coaches and doctors choice. If the man wants to play hockey, and he's medically cleared to do it, and he's an upgrade over someone else on the ice, then I say give the man a jersey.

Posted by: sirbobalew | April 16, 2009 2:44 PM | Report abuse

@richmondphil -- I finally got a laugh from the posts - defensive man indeed. Ah, it felt good to laugh!

Posted by: mikebrady1 | April 16, 2009 2:44 PM | Report abuse

Did someone say Christy Canyon?

Posted by: redlineblue | April 16, 2009 2:45 PM | Report abuse

@cappies-
if the fans of our team suck so bad...why is it that you're on here talking to them? stop being a troll- you'll get fed more often

Posted by: jess4caps | April 16, 2009 2:46 PM | Report abuse

The intensity of hits is significantly amped up on the playoffs.

What if he took a hit like Sjostrom or Callahan last night?

The upside to Pothier is that he provides us a nother blue liner who can move the puck around, and that will help our puck possession game.

Also, does anyone see my point about Green? It was apparent last night. Can NO ONE on this team except Green and OV carry it through the blue line?

Posted by: richmondphil | April 16, 2009 2:48 PM | Report abuse

oh, and @irockthered:
thank you for NICELY pointing out an error. i didn't realize that actually!
there are people on here who could learn from you that corrections don't have to be insults

Posted by: jess4caps | April 16, 2009 2:49 PM | Report abuse

I agree with ranndino. Theodore is not a fundamentally sound goaltender, like Lundqvist is. On the 4th Rangers goal, he didn’t even move, didn‘t even flinch.. It just went right through him. Varly doesn’t have playoff experience, well if we don’t give him a chance, how will he ever gain experience? I say play Varly but most likely Jose will start game 2. If he struggles again, hopefully, it won’t be too late and Varly will come in and salvage the series.

Posted by: rachel216 | April 16, 2009 2:49 PM | Report abuse

jess4caps...
Are you the same person who made the comment about Jose not wanting to be here in D.C.?

Posted by: cappies | April 16, 2009 2:49 PM | Report abuse

"it" being daaaa puck.

Posted by: richmondphil | April 16, 2009 2:49 PM | Report abuse

While Poti certainly didn't have a great game, I'm going to give him a pass. He isn't a 100 percent, and I think that was evident. Yes, if he's so bad that he's hurting the team, he should sit, but he wasn't the worst one last night.

Can we please stop disucssing the Bears and how we are going to bring up _________ to solve problem ________. These are the guys. Absent an injury, they will stay the guys. If anything, if Johnson gets better and Theo is still playing, then I could see Varly going down.

As for the goalie generally, there are thousands of theories on goalies. (Such as: Start one guy even if he starts letting in beach balls so as to give him confidence that he's the guy; start 2 guys randomly to always keep them guessing and sharp; regular rotation; "hot hand" instict; etc, etc, etc.) Whichever one Bruce uses he's obviously right if we win and dead wrong if we lose (kidding, kidding). Both Theo and Varly are decent goalies, but neither is Patrick Roy. So, pick your poison. I still think we should start Varly to give him some experience, but freely admit that there are 100s of equally good reasons to stick with Theo. We'll see...

Posted by: oldtimehockey | April 16, 2009 2:49 PM | Report abuse

If Poti wasn't ready to play, then he shouldn't have. Remember, the player is giving the okay to play too, so any mistakes he made cannot simply be given the benefit of his injury.

Like I said, goalies can become ruined with too much pressure, especially at the tender age of 20. Let Theo attempt to redeem himself.

Posted by: richmondphil | April 16, 2009 2:53 PM | Report abuse

@cappies
dude- lay off.
if i was wrong i was wrong. it's one fact. i still feel that he doesn't PLAY like he wants to be here. i could be way off on what he actually wants at this point- after all, it's not like i know the guy personally. all i'm saying is that he's playing like he doesn't care. maybe it's his size, maybe his skills have deteriorated, maybe it's just plain old bad luck.
but really, my opinion- over here. yours- over there. doesn't have to be a battle. so quit with the sarcasm and degrading the other fans. it's people putting down the others fans OF THE SAME FREAKIN' TEAM that makes fanbases look bad

Posted by: jess4caps | April 16, 2009 2:54 PM | Report abuse

@jess4caps

There are always going to be people around here who fail to grasp the concept of mature, reasoned debate, or who believe that anyone who disagrees with them (even on matters of opinion where there is no objective right or wrong) must be stupid and unworthy of respect. It's easy to make yourself feel big by being obnoxious to others, especially when you're hiding behind the cloak of anonymity. Don't let it bother you.

Posted by: capsfan26 | April 16, 2009 2:55 PM | Report abuse

Theodore should be given the job on period by period basis a couple soft goals like last night then put V in. Theodore just looked slow last night 4 goals on 20 shots thats horrible even playing behind our play half the time defense.

Posted by: DG28 | April 16, 2009 3:06 PM | Report abuse

"There is no way you could have watched the PP last night and thought there were issues - it was very, very strong."

You must be living in la-la land. There was nothing strong in the PP. It was ridiculous bad and it has been bad for sometime now. Predictable, to quote Lundqvit "I know what they are doing" - enough said.

Posted by: opita1 | April 16, 2009 3:18 PM | Report abuse

Scared to start a rookie inexperienced goalie? See Cam Ward or Steve Mason this year.

Posted by: lylewimbledon | April 16, 2009 2:16 PM


Last time I checked ol' Cammy got hit up for 4 goals last night too.

Posted by: ModestProposal | April 16, 2009 3:25 PM | Report abuse

I know I'm being waaaaay to optimistic here. But I look at game 1 like this: everything went PERFECTLY for the Rangers. Lundquist make several great saves, Theo didn't come up with a single one. They got a great break on the first goal when Avery knocked down Green with no call. Not sure what Shultz was doing on the 4th, but that seemed a bit flukey as well. Aside from the posts, pretty much every quality chance the Rangers got ended up in the net. And they won 4-3. Yes, the Caps lost, but all things being equal, they still looked like the better team and should win the series. Of course if they lose Saturday, I will, in fact, be panicking. For now, I would start Theo in game 2.

Posted by: Bass1 | April 16, 2009 3:32 PM | Report abuse

Let's all just stop and take a deep breath. If this were a 2 of 3, or even 3 of 5, I'd be really worried. But its a 4 of 7 series. Theo just needs to get his you-know-what together and come out Saturday and do what has shown in the past he can do. GO CAPS!

Posted by: pacapsfan | April 16, 2009 3:53 PM | Report abuse

Theodore allowed two questionable goals that in no small measure cost the team a win last night.

This is a young hockey team, the core players are all under 25.

I think it is time to put the goalie of the future in the nets for Game 2. He has played on the world stage before for Russia and in the Continental League, I don't see him melting under the pressure.

While the defense has to tighten up for Game 2 and going forward throughout the series, this was one game that a stand up goalie would have won for us.

Posted by: leopard09 | April 16, 2009 4:47 PM | Report abuse

DG28:
Theodore should be given the job on period by period basis
not a bad thought at all. tell him the games are only 20 minutes long, he gets to play three consecutive games (in one night) and he won't get caught up with having to play a full 60 or just trying to think ahead. this should probably be the philosophy with the whole team.
BB - could you get right on this?

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | April 16, 2009 5:08 PM | Report abuse

@jess4caps

There are always going to be people around here who fail to grasp the concept of mature, reasoned debate, or who believe that anyone who disagrees with them (even on matters of opinion where there is no objective right or wrong) must be stupid and unworthy of respect. It's easy to make yourself feel big by being obnoxious to others, especially when you're hiding behind the cloak of anonymity. Don't let it bother you.

Posted by: capsfan26 | April 16, 2009 2:55 PM | Report abuse

Cappies is just a cheerleader hired by the Caps to come on here and make fun of anyone who dares to question anything the organization does. He's about as useful as a $3 bill and should be ignored like you would any troll

Posted by: cstanton1 | April 16, 2009 5:25 PM | Report abuse

Also, does anyone see my point about Green? It was apparent last night. Can NO ONE on this team except Green and OV carry it through the blue line?

Posted by: richmondphil | April 16, 2009 2:48 PM | Report abuse

most teams are like that, esp on the blueline
Many teams don't have a single player who can carry the puck through the way Green does. That doesn't make or break a team. What makes or breaks a team is when you don't have all 5 players working as one unit. Sometimes you have to dump and chase, but when no one's chasing...

Posted by: cstanton1 | April 16, 2009 5:27 PM | Report abuse

Pothier being in scares the hell out of me. I think he is a much better defensive man than Schultz, but like I said, one solid check and he could be done. forever.

Posted by: richmondphil | April 16, 2009 2:40 PM | Report abuse


well, if he chose to come back he may as well find out now if his head can take it. His injury occurred in teh regular season so its not like he's only prone to being injured in the playoffs. Either way, McPhee didn't make any moves to bolster this defense since last year. He had a whole year to address it and he didn't. We're in the boat we're in because of him. Its not just a trading deadline thing either. His moves to upgrade the blueline were to sign Pothier and Poti. Whoops

Posted by: cstanton1 | April 16, 2009 5:30 PM | Report abuse

i hate to say it, but i think the rangers will win this series just due to the goaltending difference between lundquist and any goalie washington puts in. i am a rangers fan who will be in msg for game 3 on monday night.

Posted by: igy68 | April 16, 2009 6:41 PM | Report abuse

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