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Boudreau Pregame

Although it's the final preseason game, the Capitals continue to experiment with different line combinations - granted, today's mixing and matching is a partial product of Nicklas Backstrom being unavailable because of a cold, but Coach Bruce Boudreau is looking forward to see how Dave Steckel fares at left wing.

"I always wanted to try Steckel on left wing," Boudreau said. "Semin and Fedorov are pretty skilled guys. Lets see if Steckel can play wing with them and move Brooks up into Nicky's spot."

Quintin Laing, whose wife gave birth to their second child, a boy, earlier this week, will miss his third straight preseason game but Boudreau said that Laing's absence doesn't mean the Caps are any less fond of him.

"He played 39 games (with the Caps last season) and we know exactly what he's bringing to the table. We know that he's going to bring it in every day. We could have him not dress for six months and he'd play the same way the first game back. He would give you 120 percent and we love him here."

So far Boudreau's been happy with the level of play in the preseason. The Caps didn't want anyone to play more than three games this week or more than five total in the preseason. There only exceptions to that rule are Chris Bourque and Eric Fehr who will play in their sixth game today.

"We want all our guys to be as ready game wise as possible," Boudreau said. "I look at the two games that are overseas right now and it looked like some parts of the game are pretty sluggish so we'd like to get most of our guys playing.

Despite the Caps' 5-1 preseason record heading into tonight's game with the Bruins, Boudreau continues to stress perspective.

"Ottawa was undefeated in the preseason (last year) and they started out tremendously then they faded. The (Detroit) Lions started out 4-0 in the preseason and I don't know what their record is but it's not undefeated," he said. "I think what we harp on is habits and if everybody can continue the good habits then we'll be satisfied and if our work ethic is up then we'll be satisfied - in the preseason."

By Katie Carrera  |  October 5, 2008; 3:15 PM ET
 
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Next: Caps Lose in Shootout to Bruins, 5-4

Comments

first

Posted by: jeff | October 5, 2008 4:12 PM | Report abuse

I know the feed for the game will be on caps365, but I'm wondering whether I can get it. I'm on the west coast, and the page is complaining that it's not available in my region. Is this just because I'm 45 minutes early, or because I'm not in the DC area?

Any west coast Caps fans watch any of the preseason games? What's the deal?

Posted by: Raber | October 5, 2008 4:24 PM | Report abuse

i like the mix up of the lines, i guess with Backstrom out today we couldn't really see a dress rehearsal for Friday.

hopefully Alzner has another big game and eliminates one of the Jurskine pair from the mix.

For those who don't know, Josh Godfrey notched his first professional hat trick last night vs WBS. You can check out my write up! Also be sure to vote in the poll!

http//:feartheweagle.blogspot.com

Posted by: TJ CAPS8 | October 5, 2008 4:31 PM | Report abuse

A trade might have happened or be in the works. Mcphee had a serious discussion with Boudreau and the assistant coaches during warmups. He was on the phone in the tunnel and told told the caller he would talk to the coaches and call back with a decision. Seems unusual, Mcphee is never down there before a game.

Posted by: 68 | October 5, 2008 4:59 PM | Report abuse

@raber

it does that to me too cause I'm in Alaska. sometimes it works sometimes it doesn;t. right now its working if you go to the caps website and hit play on the first story instead of going to caps 365 which tells me its not playing in my area. got periods 1 and 2 in the game against philly but then it broke up during period 3 and when i went back to refresh it wouldnt let me see it at all. go ahead and try the website tho.

GO CAPS 6-1 baby hopefully!

Posted by: GoOVcaps | October 5, 2008 5:05 PM | Report abuse

Here's hoping the 3rd period is our best.

Posted by: jmu_capsgirl | October 5, 2008 6:45 PM | Report abuse

Yeah, I wish I had gone to the game now

Posted by: MNMNT | October 5, 2008 7:17 PM | Report abuse

OT

Let's go Caps!

Let's go Caps!

Let's go Caps!

Posted by: Dave King | October 5, 2008 7:29 PM | Report abuse

SO

Let's go Caps!

Let's go Caps!

Let's go Caps!

Posted by: Dave King | October 5, 2008 7:36 PM | Report abuse

Now we see how our new 'tender does in the SO.

Posted by: jmu_capsgirl | October 5, 2008 7:36 PM | Report abuse

What is up with Jose. Geez.

Posted by: MNMNT | October 5, 2008 7:38 PM | Report abuse

I can't get the live feed to work on the computer. Who was on the ice for overtime and why no shots?

Posted by: capsfan461 | October 5, 2008 7:39 PM | Report abuse

Semin ! dang it

Jose didn't look goo in SO

Posted by: Dave King | October 5, 2008 7:42 PM | Report abuse

well that sorta sucked.

Posted by: jmu_capsgirl | October 5, 2008 7:42 PM | Report abuse

That shootout attempt by Semin looked pretty lame. Bruce should have sent Bradley out. :)

Posted by: tess | October 5, 2008 7:42 PM | Report abuse

outshot badly 44 -24
back to practise

Posted by: wendel | October 5, 2008 7:43 PM | Report abuse

Was that Kolzig in net for the SO

Posted by: Joe | October 5, 2008 7:44 PM | Report abuse

i did not see the game, was something up with fehr, i mean 8mins of play??

Posted by: jay | October 5, 2008 7:44 PM | Report abuse

Jose looked like crap in the SO... Great job getting there, but we still aren't producing. Let's just win em all before the SO.

Posted by: Raber | October 5, 2008 7:44 PM | Report abuse

At least Ovechkin scored...

Semin was mediocre entire pre-season... The song remains the same

Posted by: Dave King | October 5, 2008 7:44 PM | Report abuse

Kozlov.

That's all I have to say.

Posted by: Jordan | October 5, 2008 7:47 PM | Report abuse

You've got to wonder how much of Theo's performance in the shoot-out has to do with him playing against an eastern team, and being so used to the tendancies of western teams players. I assume he'll see more video on eastern conference teams during the regular season.

Posted by: Steve B | October 5, 2008 7:54 PM | Report abuse

Jose was 6-1 last year in the SO, and 2-0 the year before. I think this was a fluke. *fingers crossed*

Posted by: jmu_capsgirl | October 5, 2008 7:57 PM | Report abuse

That's a stretch Steve. Manny Fernandez barely played last season, and he played for a Western team before that. Maybe once Jose actually looks at tape (I'm doubting he did for a preseason game) we'll see a difference.

With our shootout squad, I'm still kind of hoping we win before then though...

Posted by: Raber | October 5, 2008 7:59 PM | Report abuse

No shootout in the playoffs...

Posted by: Anonymous | October 5, 2008 8:02 PM | Report abuse

Forgot to mention that from the highlights and stats, Kolzig played a good game today. Of course he still lost, but he actually kept his team in a game they had no business being in.

He appears to be splitting time with Mike Smith, which oddly makes me even more afraid of playing against him...

Posted by: Raber | October 5, 2008 8:05 PM | Report abuse

Yeah Jose didn't look sharp at all in the SO. Just kinda stood there and backed into the net and let them shoot of him into the goal. He did make a couple of sprawling saves, but also gave up a lot of rebounds.

Posted by: Sombrero Guy | October 5, 2008 8:15 PM | Report abuse

Just got back from the game. Jose did not look that great. I was a little dissappointed. Maybe he was saving his strong games for Friday and Saturday.

I sure hope Semin is playing so soft because he is superstitious now about injuries in the preseason. Was expecting a little more from the "Red Line."

Chris B. really wants to make this team. Erskine and Jurcina not so much.

Posted by: Kim | October 5, 2008 8:51 PM | Report abuse

What's the matter with The Beaver? I gotta say, Jose was very hot and cold. I'm not feelin' the love ... yet. At least he was tested tonight. Sometimes he was out of position, gave up juicy rebounds or let in softies. Other times he made monster saves. Hopefully he'll get it together and play consistently in the regular season, otherwise we will be seeing a lot of Johnny.

Anyway, great 3rd period! And I am diggin' Bourque. He may be little but he is fast, plays hard and hits. I hope we see more of him.

Posted by: Boo! | October 5, 2008 9:03 PM | Report abuse

I sort of liked Erskine's play tonight. He was on the puck a lot and that's more than I can say for the rest of the D, which seemed to be invisible. Eesh.

Can someone teach Jurcina how to use a stick? It's great that he's huge and all, but can he clear a puck (to a teammate)?

I'm digging Nylander. He was a good, calming presence. Bourque had some nice stuff, but it's sad when your smallest player is your best checker.

Posted by: Muff | October 5, 2008 9:05 PM | Report abuse

Well we are back from the game and I guess the best thing I can say is if it had been You-Eh (7 goals on 15 shots) the Bruins would have scored 21. Frankly, other than that, I can't think of much positive to say about JT's performance tonight. It seems a lot of players have stepped up with the notable exception of JT!

On a more positive note that play Alzner/Borque made was great! Alzner was very impressive tonight, if the two of them are sent to Hershey, watch out!

If that was typical of JT on shootouts, out guys need to spend the next week practicing penalty shots, but I would suggest shooting them at BJ or else they will get a false sense of security when EVERYTHING goes in the net.


Posted by: Bob | October 5, 2008 9:09 PM | Report abuse

Bob,
Its not typical JT shootout performance. If you didn't read my post from earlier, I'll reiterate the stats. Jose was 6-1 last year in the SO, and 2-0 the year before.

Posted by: jmu_capsgirl | October 5, 2008 9:25 PM | Report abuse

> Jose was 6-1 last year in the SO, and 2-0 the year before.

I've read that his career trend is one year up, next year down in performance. This year is supposed to be down.... for what it's worth... hopefully new team and surroundings will change the trend...

Posted by: Dave King | October 5, 2008 9:54 PM | Report abuse

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