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Boudreau Showcases Aucoin

Here's the latest from South Florida:

Injury Update
Both Mike Green and Sergei Fedorov confirmed to me after the morning skate they're pretty sure they'll be able to suit up tonight. And with Brian Pothier and Keith Aucoin staying out for some extra skating -- that's usually reserved for the scratches -- the coaching staff is counting on having Green and Fedorov back, too.

Effort = Power Plays
All four of the Caps' power plays in last night's 5-1 loss to the Thrashers came late in the game -- the first, a slashing penalty on Boris Valabik, wasn't until 16:55 into the second period -- when Washington was already down 4-0.

"You take the first half of the game, we didn't have a power play and were credited with three hits," Coach Bruce Boudreau said. "But when Alex [Ovechkin] started hitting, and he hit that guy at the blue line, it makes them get mad and then they start doing stuff that they don't want to do, then they start taking penalties. I don't understand why sometimes we don't understand what our strength is. Our strength is the power play. To get penalties, you have make the other team take penalties and [that means] you have to outwork them in most situations and we didn't do that last night."

Despite going 0-for-4 on the power play at Philips Arena, the Caps still own the second-best unit in the league (24.7-percent).

Aucoin, Video Star
Boudreau showed a lot of video of minor league call-up Keith Aucoin during this morning's meetings. Aucoin, according to Boudreau, was the Caps' hardest-working player against the Thrashers.

"Here's a 5-foot-7 guy, there's a reason he's leading the American league in scoring," Boudreau said. "He's160 pounds soaking wet and he's finishing checks and winning battles against big guys. There's no reason that our other guys can't do that."

Faceoff Woes
The Caps have been trounced on faceoffs in two of the past three games (they lost 65 percent vs. Atlanta and lost 67 percent vs. Nashville). Getting Fedorov back should help in that department tonight against the Panthers, who are 27th-worst team in the dot.

Puck possession is so important, especially on special teams. And if you're always losing faceoffs and chasing the puck, you've already lost half the battle.

Division Difficulty
The Caps are 12-4-2 vs. the Northeast Division this season and 13-2-4 vs. the Atlantic but only 10-6-0 against the Southeast.

McCabe Set to Return
Panthers defenseman Bryan McCabe is expected to return to the lineup after missing three games with a broken nose and a fractured right orbital, Panthers Coach Peter DeBoer confirmed this morning. McCabe will wear a protective cage on his helmet.

"This guy finished the game the other night and then had three plates put in his face afterward," DeBoer said. "You can't question his will to win."

I'll check in with a lineup before tonight's game.

By Tarik El-Bashir  |  March 17, 2009; 1:12 PM ET
 
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Next: Tonight's Lineup: Caps at Panthers

Comments

Aucoin is a "coaches boy," and he should be beat with pillow cases full and a bar of soap.

Posted by: SA-Town | March 17, 2009 1:16 PM | Report abuse

from last:

You know, when I look at the cap numbers and the next two seasons things are looking pretty good. I'm not expert but if I make some assumptions here's where I get, just the business end, not whether or not I like the players:

If Brash and ShaMo aren't resigned that frees up about 3.25M and if Feds signs for a little less (maybe 3M) then that's about 4.25M to spend in the off-season. I don't know the plans with Kozlov but even if he resigns at the same money, it's covered. We've got dmen laying about the place with Alzner and Carlson waiting in wings.

After next season, if JT60 moves on with Varly or Neuwirth ready to go, then his 4.5M could be split between Backs and Semin to get them up around 5M and 6M, respectively.

There are obviously lots of other configurations but I think Backs/Semin in after next season is the priority. We have young guys to fill in over the next few seasons, and there's some room to dig around for another enforcer or veteran blueliner in the off-season. I think something like 4M or 5M would be useful. I like that the money didn't disappear or a rental popped in for the last quarter of the season, didn't make any sense to me. A good number of players that didn't get moved at the deadline - and those rentals that did - will be available in the off season without giving up young talent.

Posted by: saintex | March 17, 2009 1:23 PM | Report abuse

From previous:

I don't know about you guys but I think the solution is out there. BB keeps talking about the dirty goals and crashing the net. Did you happen to see what Gary Roberts did for the Pens last yr in the playoffs? He was released and since nobody picked him up he retired. I'm sure if GMGM called he'd come out of retirement. I know we'd have to let a contract go but it's getting old listening to BB say the same thing over and over and guys not doing it. Granted Roberts isn't the young guys he used to be but he plays the game with incredible passion and isn't afraid to go in front of the net and that's after having a major back problem a few yrs ago. And let's face it, going in front of the net these days isn't like going to the net pre-lockout.

Posted by: pokerface1208 | March 17, 2009 1:28 PM | Report abuse

Sounds to me the boys got a good lashing this morning...hope that translate into some passion tonight!

Posted by: lylewimbledon | March 17, 2009 1:32 PM | Report abuse


As a long time Schultz basher, I thought he had two really good games in Nashville and Philly. And he definitely wasn't the reason of our loss yesterday.

Ironically, Schultz had a combined -2 those games. While he was +17 when I thought he was just terrible lol.


@saintex

I think a lot will depends on the playoffs.
About Varly, you think he's ready to be a starter next season? Don't forget Brent will be back too. And, I always liked Theo, I wouldn't dismiss him so easily for next year.



Posted by: mauree | March 17, 2009 1:32 PM | Report abuse

pokerface1208

I think we should just forget about new players. I would have loved some vet stud at the trade deadline... but it's gone now.

The games in NSH and Philly prove that yes, we can crash the net when we put our minds to it.

Let's just do it tonight.

Posted by: mauree | March 17, 2009 1:37 PM | Report abuse

Boudreau showed a lot of video of minor league call-up Keith Aucoin during this morning's meetings. Aucoin, according to Boudreau, was the Caps' hardest-working player against the Thrashers.

"Here's a 5-foot-7 guy, there's a reason he's leading the American league in scoring," Boudreau said. "He's160 pounds soaking wet and he's finishing checks and winning battles against big guys. There's no reason that our other guys can't do that."

Here's a question. Why the F do we wait till almost the end of the regular season before this kind of stuff gets any mention. This is by far not the first time or stretch of games where our players have decided not to show up for 60 minutes or play a lackluster physical style. Maybe if this kind of stuff gets mentioned more frequently and earlier we wouldn't have to start addressing it right before the playoffs started.

Posted by: cstanton1 | March 17, 2009 1:37 PM | Report abuse

@mauree,

JT has one more year under contract so he and/or Brent or he and/or Varly would be 1 and 2 next season, maybe I mistyped. I think it lines up pretty well to have JT as the starter next season with Varly as the backup. The money from his contract wouldn't be free until after the 09/10 season, when coincidentally, Backs and Semin are up for new deals. I really think the team should just reserve that money for Backs and Semin. If JT were traded after a good playoff run, and someone came in who ate up that money (say Brent and Varly are tabbed for next season) then the GM would be in a really tight spot when 28 and 19 come up for new deals.

Posted by: saintex | March 17, 2009 1:37 PM | Report abuse

from last post

FlDave, Engblom came to the Caps in 1982 as a part of the Langway deal if I remember correctly.

Posted by: PhilR | March 17, 2009 1:39 PM | Report abuse

Sounds to me the boys got a good lashing this morning...hope that translate into some passion tonight!

Posted by: lylewimbledon | March 17, 2009 1:32 PM


I'm sure it will. And then in 2 games the effort will tail off again. What makes this tonguelashing any different from the 4 tonguelashings this team has been subjected to over the last few weeks?

Posted by: cstanton1 | March 17, 2009 1:39 PM | Report abuse

Big Pothier fan, and I am delighted to see him back.

Anyone else think that BB and GM should be playing him in every game now, to get the best chance of him being in full game shape by the playoffs? I wish they would.

Posted by: Dick_in_Fairfax | March 17, 2009 1:40 PM | Report abuse

@mauree

Ya know I'm kinda with ya but I'm also of the mindset that if somebody can improve your team and you don't have to give up anything to get him why not. The thing that bugs me the most is everything BB is harping on the guys about is everything that Gary Robers is. Plus the long term effects of him teaching Brooks, or Fehr or Flash how to do things and what it takes in the playoffs. To me those things don't have a price tag on them, they're priceless.

Posted by: pokerface1208 | March 17, 2009 1:46 PM | Report abuse

So... because he was the only goal scorer last night and one of the few good things about the game, Aucoin's a "coach's boy" and deserves to be beaten? You would have him humiliated because he played hard and got our only goal last night? Get a better perspective. I'd rather have a coach's boy than see the way our defense faltered last night.

Posted by: EddieP1 | March 17, 2009 1:47 PM | Report abuse

Johnson is a ufa at the end of the year, I'm pretty sure. Given his injuries, age, and chronic backup status, the Caps will be able to resign him on the cheap. JT is only signed for 1 more year. So in two years, the Caps should have some money freed up respecting goalies. They will have also dumped Nylander's salary by then and probably have a cheaper solution for Kozlov (either Kozlov signing for less or have Bourque/Fehr/Flash/Osala/???? set up with OV and Backs)

Posted by: JIMALLCAPS | March 17, 2009 1:48 PM | Report abuse

As a long time Schultz basher, I thought he had two really good games in Nashville and Philly. And he definitely wasn't the reason of our loss yesterday.

Ironically, Schultz had a combined -2 those games. While he was +17 when I thought he was just terrible lol.


@saintex


I would agree. Schultz wasn't the problem the last 2 games. Pothier added nothing last night and will probably exit this lineup for good after another chance or two. Poti is making horrible amateurish errors. And there is no forecheck by our forwards except for one or two guys or unless the other team goes up by a goal, then you see the effort rise a little, and then fall back. This team isn't comfortable playing balls out hockey unless its playing from behind.

Posted by: cstanton1 | March 17, 2009 1:49 PM | Report abuse

gonna go out on a limb and suggest he was being sarcastic? or funny?

Posted by: WhyGo | March 17, 2009 1:51 PM | Report abuse

Based on an interview earlier this season, I think it was when BB was inducted into the AHL HoF, Aucoin represented everything in last night's game that even Bruce admitted he missed as a player: working harder than everyone else. He'd said that when he was called up the NHL he was skating around, being a young hot shot, and heading off the rink at the end of practice. A successful vet pulled him aside as he was skating off and told him that being the first one to practice and the last one to leave - to outwork everyone - was the only way to make it. Boudreau seemed rueful telling the story because he seemed to recognize that maybe he didn't work hard enough even with the talent he had. Aucoin probably represented that to him last night - even if some others might have played as well - because the point is that you'll always have to outwork everyone else to make it, and win. No doubt, he was directing it a the vets who might be tired, bored, and thinking ahead to the playoffs. You gotta work every night, and last night, they didn't.

Let's roll tonight.

Posted by: saintex | March 17, 2009 1:52 PM | Report abuse

Errr why is Aucoin a scratch 2nite if he acc to Brucie was one of our only bright spots last nite? hmmm!? Instead of rewarding him and punishing another player they choose to bench KA ?

Posted by: maven1918 | March 17, 2009 1:55 PM | Report abuse

bb can cry about a lack of willingness to get their noses bloodied, and crash the net all he wants. all the "Bt - in in the world isn't going to persuade a player to do what he doesn't have the heart / guts to do. George McPhee's the one that's assembled this group of Softies. He's the one responsible.
Unfortunately, far too many of you keep talking about "The Franchise' Future" instead of focusing on TODAY. I have a newsflash for ya'll. TOMORROW IS NOT GUARANTEED!! That's why you should give it your best shot EACH & EVERY DAY. but, you McPhee apologists ignore that. you justify his not making moves before the trade deline, by spouting this foolishness about "The Future." THE FUTURE BE DAMNED!! I WANT TO WIN NOW!!! I've been waiting since the 1974 -75 season for my beloved Caps to raise Lord stanley's Cup. So, I have no more patience with this, "Wait till next year" crap. I'm sick of "Waiting." I'm fed up! Holding on to "Assests" is the behavior of a LOSER. The great, George Allen always preached, "The future is NOW!" And, he was absolutely correct.

Posted by: Puckguru | March 17, 2009 1:55 PM | Report abuse

Not sure if anyone noticed this on the broadcast, but one thing that ticked me off a bit was after going down 4-0 the cameras scanned the players bench during a timeout and Kozlov is laughing at something. I don't know what it is, but that is not a time to be laughing at anything.

Posted by: CTCapsPhan | March 17, 2009 1:57 PM | Report abuse

@eddie p1

It was a joke...relax..

Posted by: SA-Town | March 17, 2009 2:00 PM | Report abuse

eddie - it's called sarcasm...

Aucoin should skate with ovi for the rest of the season

Posted by: NJNJ | March 17, 2009 2:01 PM | Report abuse

@maven1918
Aucoin is on emergency recall to replace Fedorov. If Fedorov plays, Aucoin must be returned otherwise it would count against the four allowed callups for the playoff roster.

Posted by: koalatek | March 17, 2009 2:01 PM | Report abuse

@puck,

They may win now, they may not. Since we can't read the future, and since I don't think there's one player that was out there at the deadine that would have made this team the perfect squad, I'm not bothered with the lack of moves. Even if Chris Pronger came over for three young players that doesn't mean the Cup was secured. The Cup is never a guarantee but the cap and the need for players over the next season will be. I'd love to see them win it all - for those that have been here for 35 year....waiting - and I think they have as good a chance as any Eastern Conf team to make the Finals - as they are. The premise that making a 'big' move would guarantee a Cup is crazy - never happens.

Posted by: saintex | March 17, 2009 2:05 PM | Report abuse

CT Caps fan,
Lighten up. They were laughing at the kiss cam on the scoreboard showing Koz and Ov.

Posted by: Steve_R | March 17, 2009 2:06 PM | Report abuse

Puckguru,

You are wrong. Look at the Redskins. They mortgage everything for now and have been chasing their tails ever since. Good teams like the Red Wings have been good for a long time because they stunk for so long in the 70's that they could build up with youth and then pepper in every year with FAs.

That is how you bulld a long successful run.

I have been a fan for the same amount of time as you, but I do not want to have a one and done.

Posted by: CTCapsPhan | March 17, 2009 2:07 PM | Report abuse

Puckguru

I with ya brother! David Poile ruined me! I'm sick of hearing about "potential" and "what we're building". This is the best team the Caps have ever had by far (even the 98 team) and we are truly only 2-3 players away and possibly 1-2 and to see NOTHING done at the trade deadline was a bit disappointing. All that being said we still have a shot this yr but a lot of things have to fall into place. Teams all around us improved and we did nothing. Per my previous post, Gary Roberts is retiring and anybody who thinks he can't help this team doesn't know the type of player he is.

Posted by: pokerface1208 | March 17, 2009 2:10 PM | Report abuse

If you missed the game last night, you can watch the game on the nhl channel. Let the humiliation return!

Posted by: JIMALLCAPS | March 17, 2009 2:13 PM | Report abuse

@Saintex, et al, I doubt Feds will play for less next year. Maybe he lowers his price for next year, but the way I heard the talks went last year he basically said I am playing for whoever pay me $4M. If no one pays me $4M, then I retire.

Posted by: oldtimehockey | March 17, 2009 2:13 PM | Report abuse

Is it just me, but doesn't it seem just a little strange that Bruce would go out of his way to praise Aucoin, then scratch him from the line up? What's up with THAT? Of course, Aucoin is only one of several who should have been in D.C. all season, instead of Hershey. Certainly, Chris Borque deserves to have been here from Day # 1. Quinton Laing too. But, when your GM publically states that he's going into the regular season with the same team that lost in the very 1st round of the previous playoffs, it's definitely cause for wonder. When your GM says he, "Owes them" an opportunity to fail AGAIN ---------- because sneaking into the playoffs on the very LAST DAY of the regular season, then being dispatched home after the very 1st playoff round CONSTITUTES GROSS FAILURE where I come from, there should be no wonder as to why the team plays with such complacency the majority of the time. Unwittingly, gmgm endorsed this teams' attitude by offering them "Entitlement" to roster spots coming out of training camp.
Quinton Laing most definitely should have been a member of last season's playoff team. But, he wasn't. Here's a guy who's ALL HEART, GUTS, and GRIT. In short, he exemplifies all that's lacking with the Caps. But he's in Hershey. Hmmmm. Very strange, indeed. Chris Borque, who plays with tons of passion and grit, was arguably Washington's best player during the exhibition season. But, he was summarily shipped to Hershey as well, because George felt he "Owed" the 2008 - 09 LOSING TEAM, an opportunity to do what? LOSE SOME MORE? Holy smokes! This can't be real. Can it?

Posted by: Puckguru | March 17, 2009 2:15 PM | Report abuse

Oldtime,

I'd say goodbye next season. But I'm not a GM.

Puckguru,

I do understand where you are coming from. I have also been a fan from the begining. and except for a lucky run in 98, it's been "wait until next year" every year. But this time does feel different. I don't recall having a stable of potential in the minors ever before. I feel that as long as they move forward each season, I can survive. But if they take a step back, then patience goes out the window.

Posted by: Leeguru | March 17, 2009 2:18 PM | Report abuse

@mauree

What is your basis for the belief that Johnson will be back next year? Have you been talking to GMGM? Johnson is a UFA at the end of the year. If Varly is ready to be back up here - then re-signing Johnson wouldn't make sense. I really like Brent and he did well for us this year but he could also probably get more money/longer period (a couple years) someplace else. Neuvirth will most likely be be in Hershey, possibly along with Holtby so....

Posted by: Varly | March 17, 2009 2:21 PM | Report abuse

Steve_R

Thanks, I did not know that, but still, poor timing IMO

Posted by: CTCapsPhan | March 17, 2009 2:21 PM | Report abuse

Well,Bruce,if they don't understand what their stregnths are? Maybe you should remind them and instruct them to play to them. What's going on? Coach em.

Posted by: ridgely1 | March 17, 2009 2:22 PM | Report abuse

They put Koz and Ov on the Kiss Cam last night?

They are lucky Brash wasnt there to get the cameraman.

Posted by: SA-Town | March 17, 2009 2:22 PM | Report abuse

to that salary cap thing: Feds will probably play next year and WILL NOT retire because of Olympics (he didn't won the Gold yet)

and probably he will not ask much money from GMGM

Posted by: Rambutan_ru | March 17, 2009 2:26 PM | Report abuse

@cstanton1:

Have you ever sat in on any of their locker room meetings to confidently make a comment that this or that was never mentioned and that based on your reading of the same stories that I've read, that it should have been but never was mentioned? Just curious. That's saying a lot for someone who probably didn't sit in on the meetings. An active imagination is good though.

Posted by: LeftCoastCapsFan | March 17, 2009 2:26 PM | Report abuse

Varly

actually I have no idea if he'll be back. If we keep Theo, there's no practical reason to keep Brent... I like him too, would be sad to see him go, he's always been hard worker, loyal, never whined, and overall a good backup.

Posted by: mauree | March 17, 2009 2:27 PM | Report abuse

not sure if this has been posted yet...everyone head over to http://thebiglead.com/?cat=235 and vote for Ovie!!!

Posted by: sirbobalew | March 17, 2009 2:29 PM | Report abuse

I don't think we will see the Habs in the first round, I live in Montreal and the way they are playing right now and the pressure both Gainey (and Doug Jarvis in particular)are getting from the media about how bad the D is playing they'll be lucky to get the 8th seed. gainey had them practice yesterday on some really basic stuff, almost like a training camp, they are that bad, backing into the zone and not cleaning house in front of the net. My guess is we will see either the Canes, Florida or even the Sabres before we see the Habs. Considering we are playing teams on the outside of the playoffs looking in for the rest of the way, I say let's not panic, keep healthy, give Varlamov 3 or 4 starts and work on secondary scoring.

Posted by: Kiltmon | March 17, 2009 2:30 PM | Report abuse

@ Saintex,
I've never once said anything about making "A Big Move." And, I've certainly never uttered the name Pronger. Not one time. EVER! Historically, it's not the "Big" moves that propell teams from Wanna - Be's to Legitimate contenders. That's something Snydor and his Redskins STILL don't understand. No! On the contrary. Typically, it's the relatively "Small" subtle moves that transform teams to a championship calibre. And, there were several such moves out there. Moves that would have certainly NOT DEPLEATED George's sacred "Assests." He didn't have to mortgage the future by trading the Carlstons, Perraults, Osakas, Varlys and Alzners. BUT, HE COULD HAVE ADDED THE GRIT THEY SO DESPERATELY NEED. Truth is, he's got much of what he needs sitting in Hershey. I'd certainly take Giroux over either Flash or Fehr. And, you can't tell me Aucoin isn't an improvement over Gordon or Steckel. PLEASE. No!! There were moves that could have been made. Several of them. But, when George & Ted see 98% capacity at The Phone Booth game, after game, they figure, "Hey! Why improve? These suckers are satisfied. AND, WE'RE MAKING $$$$$ HAND OVER FIST." Think about it...... The bottom line ( Regardless of how big a "Fan" Ted portrays himself as being ) is to make as big a profit as possible. The "Patient" Caps Fans have certainly made that possible.

Posted by: Puckguru | March 17, 2009 2:33 PM | Report abuse

I guess that if a Cup isn't won then every player is shipped out every season and 20 new players brought in; I mean, it's gross failure, right?

Let's say that Aucoin, Bourque, and Laing are on the roster all season, who isn't? Just curious.

Posted by: saintex | March 17, 2009 2:37 PM | Report abuse

Does anyone notice that small snippet of that movie with the old guy saying "Stand up. 'cause we're not going to take it anymore!" Newspaper? Newscaster? Broadcaster? In any case, that's how I imagine Puckguru looking like. Just a cynical, jaded "fan". I also see him with a sign on a piece of wood outside of the Verizon Center, calling all of us to repent for the path supporting the Capitals through success or failure is the path to eternal damnation. *snicker*

Too funny. I stop reading after he starts capitalizing letters.

Posted by: LeftCoastCapsFan | March 17, 2009 2:38 PM | Report abuse

If Aucoin played so well, he should still be in the line-up. Scratch Nylander. Nyls was getting detroyed at the face-off circle anyway. Let's unleash the fury!

Posted by: jake81 | March 17, 2009 2:40 PM | Report abuse

To me it is crystal clear that Brent Johnson has to go. Theo has been good and getting better. Why would the Caps let him go after going through a long rough patch with him and beginning to see benefits? (Let alone the fact that he has a contract.

And this is the time for Varly to come up here as a back-up at first, to test him and develop him into a starter goalie eventually. If they think that Varly is their future, they have to bring him up now. When else? Unfortunately, Johnson does not fit with this plan and I can't imagine another plan that would make sense. And, conveniently, he will be a free agent soon.

Posted by: caraveli | March 17, 2009 2:41 PM | Report abuse

@puck

Pronger was an example. I guess the Hershey team is the solution to all the woes. So, the team has been built and you say everything we need is up in Hershey (which I guess is a plus for management) but the reason they aren't here in D.C. is because the owner and GM want not win a Cup?

Not sure I could be a fan of any team if I felt that there was no hope for winning a championship due to the incompetence or the owner and the hatred of the GM for the fans. That's a tough way to live.

What if they win the Cup? Then what? No moves were needed? We should have won more regular season games? We should have won more shootouts? What if they make to the Finals but don't win? Ship 'em all out and bring up Hershey next year?

Posted by: saintex | March 17, 2009 2:43 PM | Report abuse

@Puckguru: I'm thinking you weren't listening when they said that it would have cost us three of our guys in Hershey for Pronger, one of which was Alzner.

Move on, dude. There's no reset button to take us back to the trade deadline. Get some prune juice and just look forward to what we can accomplish with what we have instead of just dwelling on sour grapes.

At the end of the day, you still feel the way you feel and the rest of us who have to read your drivel, have to resort to other means to destress since we can't take a foam bat to your head every time you get on a soapbox and start declaring the end of the world. Chill out. Coot.

Posted by: LeftCoastCapsFan | March 17, 2009 2:44 PM | Report abuse

Why is everyone assuming Fedorov will just agree to take less money if he decides to return? He's making $4 mil, the way I see it he will expect that again.

Posted by: superpaqman | March 17, 2009 2:44 PM | Report abuse

@super,

I think Feds probably wants to play another year but maybe he'll say $4m or I walk. I think we can handle the $4m and still have some money leftover. I also think there's a possibility that if this team makes a deep run in the playoffs that Feds might (might) come back for a less to play on a very good team with players he seems to enjoy being around. There's nothing that says they wouldn't just let him walk and use the $4m elsewhere. I'd love to see him back even if it cost 4M. Even though he used the $4m and I play for you offer before, wasn't he pretty unhappy playing on Columbus? It was merely a discussion of contracts.

Posted by: saintex | March 17, 2009 2:49 PM | Report abuse

@jake81 - I wish it was that easy, but Aucoin was an emergency callup for Fedorov, and if Fedorov plays, Aucoin MUST be sent back to Hershey, or he counts for one of our four allowed call-ups that we get between now and the playoffs, not counting emergencies.

Posted by: irockthered | March 17, 2009 2:50 PM | Report abuse

All I have to SAY after reading all of these comments by YOU KNOW WHO YOU ARE is HAHAHAHAHA! You, sir, are NUTS!

Posted by: mikebrady1 | March 17, 2009 2:50 PM | Report abuse

im pretty sure if feds comes back next year it wont be because of the money...it will be because he wants to, he has more money than he could probably spend in a lifetime

Posted by: _stevo | March 17, 2009 2:51 PM | Report abuse

"sneaking into the playoffs on the very LAST DAY of the regular season, then being dispatched home after the very 1st playoff round CONSTITUTES GROSS FAILURE where I come from"

Posted by: Puckguru | March 17, 2009 2:15 PM

Out of curiosity Puck, what was their record at Thanksgiving? How many games did they win down the stretch to make it into the playoffs? While they didn't win the Cup, I certainly think last year was not a failure...

Posted by: HappyWeagle | March 17, 2009 2:53 PM | Report abuse

@whoever said Aucoin got the goal

Aucoin didn't get the goal last night, Fehr got the goal. When I saw it originally it was clear Fehr got it, don't know why they originally gave it to Aucoin.

Posted by: ThePat | March 17, 2009 2:57 PM | Report abuse

One more thing. I just don't know what to make of the Caps losing their sense of urgency and diluting efforts when playing with lesser teams, especially this month. We get furious at them, but it looks like Detroit and Boston have a similar month. The Devils got re-energized with Brodeur back. I don't know what is keeping the Sharks motivated and sharp. The point is whether this kind of slump is frequent for top teams at the end of the season (sort of like post partum depression. Not everyone gets it but there is a vulnerability); or we should be worrying about the Caps' play off performance. How do you compare the Caps' slump with, say, Boston's or Detroit's?

Posted by: caraveli | March 17, 2009 2:57 PM | Report abuse

since we can't take a foam bat to your head every time you get on a soapbox and start declaring the end of the world. Chill out. Coot.

Posted by: LeftCoastCapsFan

Now that made me laugh.

Posted by: Steve_R | March 17, 2009 3:00 PM | Report abuse

@ Leftcoastcapsfan,
1st of all, WHAT, my dear fella, is a ,"Coot?" Never heard that one before. And, secondly, NEVER ONCE have I argued for George acquiring Pronger. NOT ONCE. Maybe YOU'RE the one in need of some Prune Juice. Or, better yet, some EYEGLASSES. Of course, if you actually reside on the "Left Coast," then what you think is of absolutely NO CONSEQUENCE to me anyway. I've visited that neck of the woods on numerous occasions ------- and have left totally UNIMPRESSED each & every time. Just as I am with you.........

Posted by: Puckguru | March 17, 2009 3:02 PM | Report abuse

It's funny to read the over-the-top reactions depending on if the Caps win or lose the night before. They lose to the Thrashers last night and people are all over the team, their effort, the coach and GMGM.

That being said, I agree with everyone assessment of the game last night so no need to rehash. The fact is that the team has performed at a high level more often than not (actually, that's not even giving them enough credit as their record would prove). They have beaten the best teams in the east multiple times and have no problem getting up for important games. While this is not an excuse for the lack of heart shown against lesser teams, it's not the worst thing in the world so everyone should relax a bit and get ready for the playoffs.

Posted by: Moose33 | March 17, 2009 3:03 PM | Report abuse

@caraveli,

I'd say it's similar to Boston's but I wouldn't even try to compare the Caps slow month to the Wings - we know what the Wings can do. We've won 3 of 4 v. Boston this season and both teams played all out in those games. I'm staying away from worrying about slump and measure up play against the top teams in East: 3-1 vs. Boston, 2-2 vs. NJD, 2-2 vs. Philly, 3-1 vs. the Pens. I'm happy with those numbers - we can compete hard in a seven-game series with all of them.

For those more concerned than I at the last 10 games: would we rather have those marks against the top teams or crappy marks against the top teams and be winning 7-1 vs. the Avs, Kings, Thrashers, and Sens.

More times than not, seems you can't have both.

Posted by: saintex | March 17, 2009 3:03 PM | Report abuse

I think puckguru said we should have traded for Pronger.

Posted by: saintex | March 17, 2009 3:05 PM | Report abuse

@Puckguru -

This is probably a stupid question, but is there any chance that Boudreau knows more about his team and available talent in Hershey than you do? Is it possible that he sees things about players and hockey that you don't? I know he and the rest of the caps are "losers", but I was just wondering if it had occurred to that you that maybe, just possibly, BB knows more about this stuff than you do.

Posted by: hook99 | March 17, 2009 3:10 PM | Report abuse

you mean we should've traded for a guy who was off the table really early?

oh.

Posted by: richmondphil | March 17, 2009 3:10 PM | Report abuse

Yes puckguru, give it a REST, it is to late to get PRONGER!

Posted by: mikebrady1 | March 17, 2009 3:13 PM | Report abuse

and caraveli, the sharks have fallen off HARD.

they had quite the lead on DET and are now behind them.

Posted by: richmondphil | March 17, 2009 3:13 PM | Report abuse

Puck
I think I've realized something. You and I share the same opinion and I think it's because we've been with this team since it's inception and we've been through all the lows, lows, lows, lows, high, lows, lows and now another high. We've been through all the David Poile "potential" promises etc while most on here haven't been through that suffering. Most probably haven't been through 6 playoff defeats to the hated Pens. Haven't been through the defeats of 3-0 leads in the playoffs, haven't been through the Tony Kornholio jokes of "what's red, white and blue and plays golf in April"? So when people like us see us "I--I" this close to being there it's frustrating to lose the way we lose and it's frustrating to see our team sit idle while all the others around us improve. I hear ya in that you never mentioned Pronger. I think we agree that that was not a good move but what about the players in Hershey that play the type of game BB is asking for? And to those of you who think this rant is just because we lost, it's not, it's because of the WAY we lost. Completely uninspired, lazy, irresponsible hockey. OV got mad and started hitting everything he saw. That's the mentality the rest of them need to have. That's what Gary Roberts (outside the organization) would bring, that's what Bourque (inside the origanization) would bring. So for those of you who haven't been through all the lows with this team, you obviously don't share the same frustration and maybe making it out of the 1st round this yr is a success to you and in some respects it is but that's not how WINNING organizations grade themselves. Detroit won the Cup last yr and what did they do in the offseason? They went and got the best FA out there so they didn't have to do anything at the trade deadline. When we meet a skilled/skating team in the playoffs we'll be fine, but the 1st series we meet a gritty in your face type of team, we're gonna struggle. We might beat 1 of them in a series but I doubt we'll beat 2. I'm not being pesimistic, I'm just calling it like I see it.

Posted by: pokerface1208 | March 17, 2009 3:22 PM | Report abuse

Does anyone think Ovie has been affected by that exchange with Cherry a few weeks ago? I noticed that his last few goal celebrations during the past week were more subdued and he doesn't seem to be playing with the consistent passion that he previously displayed? I thought it might be due to a touch of the "flu" that seems to be going around the clubhouse but does anyone think it might be Cherry's criticism in his head?

Posted by: DevilsCapsGal | March 17, 2009 3:25 PM | Report abuse

lol.

Posted by: richmondphil | March 17, 2009 3:26 PM | Report abuse

saintex

You make some excellent points, including: "would we rather have those marks against the top teams or crappy marks against the top teams and be winning 7-1 vs. the Avs, Kings, Thrashers, and Sens."

So what is your explanation for losing to lesser teams and why does it "seem you can't have both."

Does this mean that if we are paired with any of these lesser teams in the first round of the playoffs, we would be out? This is my concern rather than our record for the season. I am happy with that.

Posted by: caraveli | March 17, 2009 3:30 PM | Report abuse

Puck

All of that being said the one thing I will disagree with you on though is Ted. I don't believe for a second that Ted is 1 making money hand of fist (he doesn't own VC yet) and even if he did I believe he truly burns to win the Cup but he is very stubborn and he will only do it his way. You can't really argue too much with it either. There are 2 players that have made him the way he is and that's Jagr and now Nyls. I doubt that we will ever see him go after a big time free agent again. He believes in building from within and adding bricks to the wall vs. "the wall".

Posted by: pokerface1208 | March 17, 2009 3:32 PM | Report abuse

You make some excellent points, including: "would we rather have those marks against the top teams or crappy marks against the top teams and be winning 7-1 vs. the Avs, Kings, Thrashers, and Sens."

So what is your explanation for losing to lesser teams and why does it "seem you can't have both."

Does this mean that if we are paired with any of these lesser teams in the first round of the playoffs, we would be out? This is my concern rather than our record for the season. I am happy with that.

Posted by: caraveli | March 17, 2009 3:30 PM

playoff series are different than regular season games. basing a playoff series off regular season games is naive.

there is no explanation, but you will lose games. That is how sports work. DET lost 8-0 to Nashville and looked far worse and frustrated than we did. It happens guys. They are not going to play a full 60 every single game, no player does and even if they did, people will still complain if they played bad.

Posted by: richmondphil | March 17, 2009 3:35 PM | Report abuse

@puckguru:

You've posted previously your extreme hatred for the GM for not making any moves. For not making any acquisitions. You also had made comments that it should have been easy to get Pronger in a previous statement, for little to nothing, that would not have cost us the farm. Seeing as how any acquisition would have cost us some promising players, your point of argument that something should have been done at the trade deadline was negated because it would have cost us a lengthy period of Stanley Cup contention, not just for this year but the next couple of years. I'm trusting the people who are paid to manuever the Capitals to the Cup Finals to do what they feel is best. To rely on a ranting old fool (coot) bellowing about spilled milk and the like, seems silly. And unless it was evident, I'm not all that impressed with you either. Had I know you were visiting, I would have did my best to show you a wonderful time here on the Left Coast. We have some exciting highways I would have loved to show you. And the mountains are a lovely time during the winter months. Snow and rain blanketing their surface. It would have been a lovely time to show you around and to leave you there. Prune juice all around!

Let's GOO Caps!

Posted by: LeftCoastCapsFan | March 17, 2009 3:38 PM | Report abuse

Puckguru's use of capitalization constitutes an internet red card

Posted by: doncosmic | March 17, 2009 3:38 PM | Report abuse

I'm not sure there is a science to how a team should be finishing the season in order to prepare to win the Cup. Not too many teams go through an entire season without a couple of slumps and in all sports teams with big leads have a tendency to ease up. It is sort of a sports given that you just need to be hot going into the playoffs, but that didn't seem to work for us last year. I think that the ability to rise to the occasion against the best teams consistently is probably a great indicator (certainly the NCAA tournament selection committee seems to value that highly) of post-season success. That would bode well for the Caps this year. If you look at last year, we dominated the weaker teams (particularly the Southeast) but didn't fare as well against the elite teams and then we didn't get past the first round. I'm thinking this team will get through at least a round or two and maybe more.

Posted by: ccCapsfan | March 17, 2009 3:40 PM | Report abuse

Leftcoast,

Is it true the Prune Juice is better in cali?

Posted by: Leeguru | March 17, 2009 3:40 PM | Report abuse

@caraveli,

There have been teams in the past that racked up unbelievable records across the board but it's been pretty rare, hasn't it? Looking at top teams this year they've all had a good number of horrible games so I don't think it's anything isolated to the Caps. I think it's motivation on the slow nights against teams that don't get the blood running that's the problem but that's not a major issue, to me. As for the playoffs, motivation isn't a factor - it doesn't matter who we play in the opening round of the playoffs because, by default, the motivation will be there, it's the playoffs and not some roadtrip to Atlanta in the middle of March. Do you think that if the Caps play the Rangers, Habs, 'Canes, Panthers, Sabres, or Pens in the opening they won't be motivated and focused? If they aren't then there's something much worse brewing than off nights against bad teams.

Like I said in the last thread, there have been very few instances where the team hasn't stepped up against very good compeition - I think we're all guilty of mailing it in.

I just don't see the long-term pessimism; -I think this team, right now, can got deep in the playoffs and have certainly shown over a number of season series that they can compete with the physical teams in our conference.

Posted by: saintex | March 17, 2009 3:41 PM | Report abuse

here's some food for thought. I hardly doubt any of you work "100%" of the time at your job. and if you do, you are kidding yourself or own a flogging business.

Posted by: richmondphil | March 17, 2009 3:42 PM | Report abuse

\/ never works 100%

Posted by: Leeguru | March 17, 2009 3:44 PM | Report abuse

@puckguru: You're entitled to your opinion but you don't seem to give enough credit that there are times when the Caps do play but you seem more inclined to dwell on the negatives and think it's hopeless. I think we both agree that we want the Caps to win. I could sympathize with you and the others who've been waiting a lot longer than I have for the Caps to win. But if you could recall for a second, that first year you got into the Caps and experienced a game win or two, what that feeling was? Juxtapose that with someone who dismisses the players for a bad game or two. How that messes up your perception of that person who is attacking your favorite team. I'm new to this and any victory the Caps obtain, I'm in. Any losses they experience, I'll hope that they learn from it and do better next time. They might. They might not but it's not enough to completely give up on them. Until the day they start literally flipping us the bird, I'm going to believe that they're going out there every night to win. It's not a guarantee but I'm okay with that. Here's hoping for their success.

Posted by: LeftCoastCapsFan | March 17, 2009 3:50 PM | Report abuse

SA-Town, I live in San Antonio and am a huge Capitals fan. I can't believe there's another one here, but I had to ask--are you in San Antonio too?

Posted by: youaresquishy | March 17, 2009 3:51 PM | Report abuse

@saintex - You and I seem to be on the same page. See the note I posted about 1 minute before your last post.

Posted by: ccCapsfan | March 17, 2009 3:52 PM | Report abuse

@leeguru: It's great with a shot of rum. =P

Posted by: LeftCoastCapsFan | March 17, 2009 3:52 PM | Report abuse

@richmond...

I'm so mailing it in and I'm a gross failure.

Posted by: saintex | March 17, 2009 3:54 PM | Report abuse

Puck and Poker,

I have been a fan since the inception. I was at both the Isles and Pens multiple OT loses. I don't agree with most of what you say because I believe you must be in for the long haul. I do have patience because I see upside to the team.

I do agree though that Ted is one of the best owners in the NHL and maybe pro sports.

Posted by: CTCapsPhan | March 17, 2009 3:54 PM | Report abuse

Here's a question that's been bugging me: why is it that they always run into "hot" goalies. When Gerber played out of his head after being gifted back into the league I wrote that off as a guy who was hyper motivated for personal results. But the Caps have lately been making some so-so goalies look pretty stellar, including last night. Maybe the goalies step it up because of the challenge, or maybe the Caps have been phoning in the offense.

Thoughts?

Posted by: oldtimehockey | March 17, 2009 3:58 PM | Report abuse

@saintex
"As for the playoffs, motivation isn't a factor - it doesn't matter who we play in the opening round of the playoffs because, by default, the motivation will be there, it's the playoffs and not some roadtrip to Atlanta in the middle of March. Do you think that if the Caps play the Rangers, Habs, 'Canes, Panthers, Sabres, or Pens in the opening they won't be motivated and focused? If they aren't then there's something much worse brewing than off nights against bad teams."

That indicates having the ability to "flip the switch". Only very very talented teams have that ability in any sport. I hope as all of us do that this is just a matter of "flipping the switch" vs. a true achiles heal. I agree though, with the exception of the 1 night in Philly and our west coast trip earlier in the yr we have always played inspired games against "playoff caliber" teams. Let's hope your assessment is dead on.

Posted by: pokerface1208 | March 17, 2009 3:58 PM | Report abuse

Poker
One problem in the NHL you cannot "let a contract go". I mean it would be great not to have to buy out players who were dogging it, but you can't even buy them out until after the season ends.

Posted by: majiksea | March 17, 2009 4:00 PM | Report abuse

@youaresquishy

SA-Town = South A-Town...South Arlington

Posted by: SA-Town | March 17, 2009 4:00 PM | Report abuse

@puckguru - many of us have endured the Poile years, and I agree some of what GMGM says (when he says anything) sound similar. Howver, the difference is that under GMGM the build up of the young talent has been faster and more of those young players have (or are ready) to play in the NHL. Meanwhile, the Poile version of "wait until next year" plays on in Nashville and they are treading the same path as the Caps did under GMDP. IMO we are much better off now than we were then.

Also, you make it sound so simple to go pick someone up at the deadline, we couldn't get Roberts because we were already at our 50 contract limit, that is why the Guerin deal unravelled because we couldn't move Nyls. And I don't disagree that some of the guys at Hershey might be more effective than some of the guys in DC, but if we send Fehr or Flash down they are most likely gone forever since they would have to clear waivers and I don't thing there are 29 other GMs out there dumb enough not to grab them if they could.

Posted by: ds_kelly | March 17, 2009 4:02 PM | Report abuse

I think someone mentioned it earlier but does anybody think that they are not playing "as hard" because they are trying to save themselves for the playoffs? It's kinda like in football at the end of the season a team that has a first round bye, sits the star players to keep them from getting hurt. I'm thinking maybe some of the guys are saying to themselves "Why go all out against a weaker team and take a risk of getting hurt and missing playoff time. I'm going to save my energy for when we really need it in another month" Im not saying I agree with this philosophy but maybe this is whats going on? What do you guys think?

Posted by: ludeman95 | March 17, 2009 4:05 PM | Report abuse

oldtimehockey

read BB notes, I think he nailed it. Quoting him:

"we're not going to score on this guy tonight unless someone goes to the front of the net"

If you don't put pressure, any goalie will look extremely good and get more and more confident as time goes by.

Posted by: mauree | March 17, 2009 4:06 PM | Report abuse

@CT

Oh for the love of God please don't bring up that night that I spent in the Capital Centre until 2:30AM only to lose to the Pens. :( I think you're misreading puck and I (or at least me). I am completely on board with the "long term" deal which is why I'm glad we didn't make a move for Pronger. The bottom line is that we did NOTHING to improve ourselves whereas everybody else that we will face in the playoffs did including the Pens who at the time were out of the playoffs or barely in (I can't remember exactly). So I/we aren't saying to blow our load for a Cup run this yr but every Dman moved prior to or at the deadline would've been an improvement and there was little given up for most of them. You're not mortgaging the future by giving up a 2nd round pick. That's all I (and I think Puck) are saying.

Posted by: pokerface1208 | March 17, 2009 4:07 PM | Report abuse

Majiksea

Not true, there were many players "let go/placed on waivers" at the trading deadline so if the Caps wanted to rid themselves of a contract to pick somebody up they could do it today.

Posted by: pokerface1208 | March 17, 2009 4:10 PM | Report abuse

@poker,

I agree. The idea that one can "flip a switch", and that it's the nature of this team, may be a very true assessment. We've all seen some games where they do flip the switch after getting behind. I'd rather they not be that way, but I suspect they might be. Hopefully, there's nothing but "on" at playoff time.

@oldtime,

I think they always look great because this team and style doesn't put anyone in the front of the net, for the most part. I think almost every goalie gets a good look at 80% of the shots and makes the save - don't they always harp that if they can see it, they'll stop it. We rely on our great players making great plays - that's how they're designed. Think about a lot of AOs goals: sharp angle from the circle with wrister, between a d-mans legs. Green blasting perfectly placed shots from the point. Semin with moves near the goals. There are some junk and dirty goals - and I know BB harps on it - but they don't seem too interested, as players, in doing that.

Believe it or not, much like puck, I know there are places for improvement on this team when it comes to types of play and players. I think we'll get there but some of those moves may not come until next season; it happens. I think we can go deep with this team.

Posted by: saintex | March 17, 2009 4:10 PM | Report abuse

Does anyone think Ovie has been affected by that exchange with Cherry a few weeks ago? I noticed that his last few goal celebrations during the past week were more subdued and he doesn't seem to be playing with the consistent passion that he previously displayed? I thought it might be due to a touch of the "flu" that seems to be going around the clubhouse but does anyone think it might be Cherry's criticism in his head? Posted by: DevilsCapsGal | March 17, 2009 3:25 PM
Maintaining the kind of passion that #8 displays over 82 games (too damn long a season, btw) is not possible. I wouldn't say he takes shifts off, but cherry picking near the opponents' blue line rather than backchecking is one way to conserve energy.
As far as his goal celebrations, I wouldn't mind if he saved the plexi-leap for, I don't know, game winners in overtime against a team with at least a winning record. I would be surprised, however, if Cherry had any influence over Alex. How can anyone take this guy seriously? He looks like Mickey Rooney had Botox and went shopping at Soul Train Fashions.

Posted by: Bengt-Ake | March 17, 2009 4:13 PM | Report abuse

ludeman95

I try to be respectful in my posts but I think that's ridiculous and if I were BB and I even had a hint that that's what's going on, that'd be the quickest way to a healthy scratch if I've ever seen one. This is no time to be "ham and eggin" it. This is what's known as the stretch run, aka. gearing up for the playoffs.

Posted by: pokerface1208 | March 17, 2009 4:14 PM | Report abuse

Of course they are not playing as hard because they have the spot locked up.

Same with the Bruins, Sharks, Flames, Blackhawks.

The Devils have Jesus Christ in pads just coming off the injured list, so he is trying to get in playoff shape.

Once the playoffs start, it's a new game, and they all know it.

Posted by: SA-Town | March 17, 2009 4:14 PM | Report abuse

Thanks for the clarification on Aucoin's status Koalatek. Makes sense now.


@PUCKGURU [bb can cry about a lack of willingness to get their noses bloodied, and crash the net all he wants. all the "Bt - in in the world isn't going to persuade a player to do what he doesn't have the heart / guts to do. George McPhee's the one that's assembled this group of Softies. He's the one responsible.]


DANG STRAIT! McPhee fails to pull the trigger on trades. He's one of only 3 GMs in all the NHL who hasn't made a trade since last September. Must be nice to keep collecting paychecks no matter how much you suck at your job. Tell it like it is Puckman! The Caps team is soft. This is why their coach is now whining about the lack of hitting. How many players do we have that really like to hit?

Vech
Brads

That's about it for offense. Has Gordo ever hit anyone ? Steckel hits like an old lady. Brashear is good for one thing only and thats to fite the other team's tuffguy. Fehr is a big kid who doesn't hit. Face it, as long as McPhee's in charge of assembling this team you will always have a lack of hitting. HE doesn't care about it. Its not important to him.

Posted by: maven1918 | March 17, 2009 4:15 PM | Report abuse

@poker,

A player place on waivers, who clears and goes to your AHL team is still on your payroll and counts against the 50 total and the cap number. A player who is picked up on the way down - if he's grabbed - is covered, moneywise, by the grabee. If the player goes down and is then called back up he can be picked up and the current team pays half the remaining. That's how I understand it from what I've seen here. As an example, if Flash were put on waivers/assignment to Hershey we'd still be on the hook - with no contract of monetary relief - if he wasn't claimed. Are there some cap experts out there that can weigh in?

Posted by: saintex | March 17, 2009 4:16 PM | Report abuse

Here's a trade suggestion that McPhee could have tried instead of only trying to get defenseman. Trade Mo or one or two of your defensive prospects for Chris Kunitz. All the Ducks got for Kunitz was Whitney. You telling me we couldn't offer better than that ? There were more way to improve the team besides just looking for Pronger. McPhee tried to hit a home run without offering much and he let every other tradeable player swim past him. I'll take Kunitz on a scoring line and Chris Neil on a 3rd line. Those guys get thier noses dirty the way BB wants his team and other guys follow suit.

Posted by: maven1918 | March 17, 2009 4:19 PM | Report abuse

@ pokerface1208

I think you mistook what I was saying. I in no way agree that a player take "nights off" because he's trying to conserve energy for the playoffs. It would be very easy to tell the coach that said player is just getting worn down from a long season, thats why he looked sluggish out there tonight.

Posted by: ludeman95 | March 17, 2009 4:20 PM | Report abuse

Saintex- my example is Gary Roberts. You example is of a player who has a "two-way contract" so if he does clear waivers he can play at the AHL level. Gary Roberts has a "one way contract" so he doesn't go play in the minors. Regardless my point isn't necessarily with a player on the Caps right now, my point is a player in Hershey who wouldn't be picked up by anybody necessarily. A depth player in Hershey was more my point. We could cut somebody down there to rid ourselves of a contract and add a player like a Gary Roberts.

Posted by: pokerface1208 | March 17, 2009 4:22 PM | Report abuse

"sneaking into the playoffs on the very LAST DAY of the regular season, then being dispatched home after the very 1st playoff round CONSTITUTES GROSS FAILURE where I come from"

Posted by: Puckguru | March 17, 2009 2:15 PM

daaaaam! PuckGuru is the king of this board. Posers

I like how McPhee said that he thought having Potheir and Alz in the fold was better than any of the other tradable options out there. LMAO! I just wonder what all the mcphee lovers will say if the caps lose in the 1st round to a bottom seed. What excuses will you have for him then ?

Posted by: maven1918 | March 17, 2009 4:23 PM | Report abuse

Gotta love them trolls

Posted by: ludeman95 | March 17, 2009 4:25 PM | Report abuse

@poker,

But to bring on Robert we'd need one of the 50 slot open, right? I'm just clarifying for myself because I'm not well-versed in all the contract stuff.

Posted by: saintex | March 17, 2009 4:26 PM | Report abuse

Ludeman

Gotcha, I'm with ya. Don't tase me bro! LOL!

Posted by: pokerface1208 | March 17, 2009 4:27 PM | Report abuse

Gary Roberts? No thanks. He has nothig left to give any team. Can't fault McPfly for passing on that. I think McFlea thought he could just make a last minute trade no problem and he wasn't able to so he made some excuse that his team was better off anyway and that sometimes the best deal is no deal. Self serving garbage that his supporters swallow up like little baby birdies.

Posted by: maven1918 | March 17, 2009 4:27 PM | Report abuse

Gotta love them trolls

Posted by: ludeman95 | March 17, 2009 4:25 PM


gotta love em fans with blinders on

Posted by: maven1918 | March 17, 2009 4:28 PM | Report abuse

what should be concerning the organization is that when 40yr old fedorov isn't playing, the caps get blown out of the dot. Where is the depth at faceoffs? Who does well on faceoffs in Hwrshey? No Feds next year and then what?

Posted by: oo7 | March 17, 2009 4:29 PM | Report abuse

larry murphy sucks.

Posted by: richmondphil | March 17, 2009 4:34 PM | Report abuse

Man, I don't mention any names but still get a response, funny how that works.

Posted by: ludeman95 | March 17, 2009 4:35 PM | Report abuse

Kunitz is would be an average of $3.8M over the next three seasons and ShaMo is a RFA after this season. Kunitz has been great in Pittsburgh but they needed wingers to get Crosby rolling - I don't think he'd have made as big a difference here and I'm not much interested in being locked into someone for 10M if we don't know how he'll fit in. Seen it, done it. The Whitney trade gave the Ducks about a half-mil of cap room after this season since his salary is comparable.

Posted by: saintex | March 17, 2009 4:35 PM | Report abuse

Gary Roberts? No thanks. He has nothig left to give any team. Can't fault McPfly for passing on that. I think McFlea thought he could just make a last minute trade no problem and he wasn't able to so he made some excuse that his team was better off anyway and that sometimes the best deal is no deal.

Posted by: maven1918 | March 17, 2009 4:27 PM

this is exactly what happened. he tried to make some trades and they fell through. big deal. if you complain enough here, time will warp back to march 3rd though.

Posted by: richmondphil | March 17, 2009 4:37 PM | Report abuse

larry murphy sucks.


Posted by: richmondphil | March 17, 2009 4:34 PM

One of the best? HA, your crazy phil, lol

Posted by: ludeman95 | March 17, 2009 4:37 PM | Report abuse

Trust me until you have been a red sox fan all your life you do not know the agony of bad seasons or that "wait until next year" is a swear word up in new england. After so many bad years and trying to buy the world series, the red sox learned that the way to win championships is to build from within and then bring in some low cost free agents. Hence the 2 championships in four years. GMGM and Ted Leonsis both figured that out fairly quickly in their tenures here. Will we win the CUP this year maybe, maybe not but we have the foundation to stay in the playoff picture for years to come.

I get angry at the guys for not playing well but I also remember that this team has one of the best records in its history. The guys have learned from the ouster of playoffs last year and don't want to repeat. Sometimes it is hard to get up for games to lowly teams when you are so far ahead in the division and are pretty much assured a playoff spot.

I am sure many of us have low periods in our life when we don't perform so well. I know if I have a light work day its hard to stay motivated.


Posted by: estuart0 | March 17, 2009 4:40 PM | Report abuse

Believe it or not, much like puck, I know there are places for improvement on this team when it comes to types of play and players. I think we'll get there but some of those moves may not come until next season; it happens. I think we can go deep with this team.

Posted by: saintex | March 17, 2009 4:10 PM

I for one am a bit tired of waiting for the defense to improve. I don't think even the strongest GM supporter can give him a free pass for that. Year after year and offseason after offseason, nothing gets done to really address the strong veteran void that we have on the blueline. And pls, no one mention Poti :)

Posted by: cstanton1 | March 17, 2009 4:42 PM | Report abuse

@RichmondPhil
[this is exactly what happened. he tried to make some trades and they fell through. big deal. if you complain enough here, time will warp back to march 3rd though.]

Better yet we should all just hide our heads up our butts and pretend McFool did a great job at the deadline even though his hands were apparently tied by himself. Yay! Blinders!

Posted by: maven1918 | March 17, 2009 4:44 PM | Report abuse

maven1918,

I have been as critical of McPhee as anyone in the past. I had to eat a lot of crow this season. His plan has worked. The Caps are the most offensively gifted team in the league. In addition that talent is very young and will contribute for many years to come. Does the team have holes? Sure, but you don't bargain away a very bright future to fill them for a couple of months. Someone with a different opinion than you does not make them a victim of "blinders".

Posted by: FLDave | March 17, 2009 4:44 PM | Report abuse

I've not liked Poti since he's been here. Like I said, he may be the most seasoned and consistent d man we got, but across the NHL he is mediocre at best.

our defense is pretty bad, but ive been saying that since i've posted here. i dont see why people feel they are on a crusades now about it when the season is almost over.

Posted by: richmondphil | March 17, 2009 4:44 PM | Report abuse

LOL @ richmondphil

Posted by: FLDave | March 17, 2009 4:45 PM | Report abuse

sAintex
[Kunitz is would be an average of $3.8M over the next three seasons and ShaMo is a RFA after this season. Kunitz has been great in Pittsburgh but they needed wingers to get Crosby rolling - I don't think he'd have made as big a difference here and I'm not much interested in being locked into someone for 10M if we don't know how he'll fit in. Seen it, done it]

I've seen what Kunitz can do from teh moment he got plucked off waivers from Atlanta. This organization would be lucky to pick up a player like that for the next 3 seasons for a total of $10mil. Whats not to like ? He's Dino Ciccarelli but a bit bigger and stronger. How much of that element do we have on our top lines or anywhere in the organization ? this is a guy who plays hard all the time and knows how to score the dirty goals. McFool's already tied up millions in bad FA acquistions, I find it funny that we're turning up our noses at a Kunitz.

Posted by: maven1918 | March 17, 2009 4:47 PM | Report abuse

@RichmondPhil
[this is exactly what happened. he tried to make some trades and they fell through. big deal. if you complain enough here, time will warp back to march 3rd though.]

Better yet we should all just hide our heads up our butts and pretend McFool did a great job at the deadline even though his hands were apparently tied by himself. Yay! Blinders!

Posted by: maven1918 | March 17, 2009 4:44 PM

let me get serious for a second, since maven wont give it up.

I, and most people here who have "blinders" on, have been highly critical of MCPhee's moves. But guess what? It's not going to change anything. I don't like Poti, I didn't want ShaMo to get re-signed. Erskine? nyls debacle?

we all recognize McPhee's mistakes but the difference is is that we reocngize that we cannot do anything about it. So what do we do? We take what we have and roll with it. This is what fans do. If you are highly critical/bitter/whatever, then right on man, keep being an edgy negative rebel. But we are both fans here, so instead of channeling all this negativity at the team you supposedly support, how about going with what you have? Is it THAT hard to acknowledge a mistake but not dwell on it? Seems to be to you...

Posted by: richmondphil | March 17, 2009 4:48 PM | Report abuse

And i guess dwelling on mistakes/being optimistic means you have "blinders" on.

please, someone take off my red shades, everything is rose-tinted.

Posted by: richmondphil | March 17, 2009 4:50 PM | Report abuse

"You example is of a player who has a "two-way contract" so if he does clear waivers he can play at the AHL level. Gary Roberts has a "one way contract" so he doesn't go play in the minors."

To clarify: all a ONE-WAY contract means is that the player will be paid the same $amount regardless of where he plays. It doesn't mean he can't get sent down. It just means he can get sent down and will still make big bucks while he's down there. A TWO-WAY contract means he has a sliding pay scale depending which level he plays at.

Posted by: tess2201 | March 17, 2009 4:52 PM | Report abuse

It's their way and their way only Phil, lol

Posted by: ludeman95 | March 17, 2009 4:53 PM | Report abuse

To clarify: all a ONE-WAY contract means is that the player will be paid the same $amount regardless of where he plays. It doesn't mean he can't get sent down. It just means he can get sent down and will still make big bucks while he's down there. A TWO-WAY contract means he has a sliding pay scale depending which level he plays at.

Posted by: tess2201 | March 17, 2009 4:52 PM

LOL...i was going to say something, but i decided not to.


seems my criticism of people learning their armchair GM things from video games is true...

Posted by: richmondphil | March 17, 2009 4:54 PM | Report abuse

Someone with a different opinion than you does not make them a victim of "blinders".

Posted by: FLDave | March 17, 2009 4:44 PM


what a riot! The fans you are defending in this case are guilty of exactly that when they call someone who disagrees with them a "troll".

Posted by: maven1918 | March 17, 2009 4:55 PM | Report abuse

It's their way and their way only Phil, lol

Posted by: ludeman95 | March 17, 2009 4:53 PM


you and phil lovers ? you sure sound like it. Or maybe you just have a man-crush ?

hehehe

Posted by: maven1918 | March 17, 2009 4:56 PM | Report abuse

No man-crush here, we are full on lovers.

why, whats up?


larry murphy sucks and two-way contracts mean that they dont have to go through waivers.
right maven?

Posted by: richmondphil | March 17, 2009 4:58 PM | Report abuse

Maven

You're the smartest GM I know not in the league...do you not interview well? is that why you don't have a GM job in the NHL, AHL,ECHL, KHL etc?

That being said, you have a right to your opinion, as do I - and my opinion is that you like to spout all these scenarios but haven't a clue about actually running an organization within the constraints that a hockey team has (neither do I by the way, and I'll guess that nobody who blogs here does either).

Keep it up, you'll crack the barrier some day.

Posted by: NJNJ | March 17, 2009 4:59 PM | Report abuse

I do, but i don't interview so well.

Posted by: Moose33 | March 17, 2009 5:01 PM | Report abuse

No trolls are the ones we only see on here after losses. The high and mighty ones that have the "Being the best NHL GM for dummies" book in their back pockets. It's funny no one heard from "Puckguru" after the Caps beat Philly last week.

Posted by: ludeman95 | March 17, 2009 5:03 PM | Report abuse

Posted by FLDave--- His plan has worked. The Caps are the most offensively gifted team in the league. In addition that talent is very young and will contribute for many years to come. Does the team have holes? Sure, but you don't bargain away a very bright future to fill them for a couple of months


I'm going to respectfully disagree with you dave on some points and some of things you are implying here.

You assume that McPhee KNOWS what the holes are, to WHAT extent he needs to fix it, and HOW to fix it. I don't think he knows any of those things. His priorities have always been puckmovers on defense at the expense of defensemen who actually can play defense. He drafts forwards with skill at the expense of players with perhaps a little less skill who compete a lot harder. As long as McPhee is here, none of that will change. We'll keep drafting more and more players like the Bouchards instead of players who play a more balanced game. If McPhee truly thought his defense was a problem and the way to fix it would have been to draft more rugged types, Joe Finley would have been joined by a host of other similar types via trade and drafts. Instead, he stands alone as our lone defensive prospect with size who is willing to use it. You don't fill holes like that. And our defense has been a problem for over a decade now.

Posted by: cstanton1 | March 17, 2009 5:04 PM | Report abuse

maven1918,

Perhaps some people don't understand what a troll is? Disagreeing is not being a troll.

Constant complaining gets just as old as constant optimism in my book. I wasn't calling you out personally. I have been involved in hockey for more years than I care to admit to. Played for several, been a fan for longer. As much as I like to think I know hockey, I was wrong on McPhee. Now if he doesn't sign at least two righteous defensemen over the summer we can hate McPhee together next season.

Posted by: FLDave | March 17, 2009 5:06 PM | Report abuse

Ludeman
[No man-crush here, we are full on lovers.

why, whats up?]

That would explain your man love for Schultz and the rest of the candya** powderpuffs that make up half this team. Questions have been answered! Thanks Ludeman!


Posted by: maven1918 | March 17, 2009 5:07 PM | Report abuse

More hyper critical fans need to take a cue from cstanton. if you are going to be "that guy" at least be "that guy" right.

Sure, he posts some stuff I disagree with every now and then, but at least he can back up what he says most of the time without a bunch of nonsense. He actually lists very specific identified problems, instead of "GMGM sucks, he shouldve gotten pronger."

Posted by: richmondphil | March 17, 2009 5:10 PM | Report abuse

maven1918,

Perhaps some people don't understand what a troll is? Disagreeing is not being a troll.

Of course not FLDave. Us smart folks get it

Posted by: maven1918 | March 17, 2009 5:10 PM | Report abuse

I'm surprised Maven responded, though he avoided what he was called out on very nicely. Usually when I or someone else call him out, he leaves.

So maven...larry murphy sucks and a two-way contract means you dont have to pass through waivers? right??? the NHL video game told me it worked that way though!

Posted by: richmondphil | March 17, 2009 5:11 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: Moose33 | March 17, 2009 5:11 PM | Report abuse

maven,

"I've seen what Kunitz can do from teh moment he got plucked off waivers from Atlanta"

Didn't Atlanta claim him from the Ducks who then claimed him back from Atl two weeks later? What's you point?

Posted by: Steve_R | March 17, 2009 5:12 PM | Report abuse

That being said, you have a right to your opinion, as do I - and my opinion is that you like to spout all these scenarios but haven't a clue about actually running an organization within the constraints that a hockey team has (neither do I by the way, and I'll guess that nobody who blogs here does either).

Keep it up, you'll crack the barrier some day.

Posted by: NJNJ | March 17, 2009 4:59 PM

So kindly explain to me how 30 other GMs in this league arent "CONSTRAINED" like our dearly beloved McFool is ? Other teams have or make their own flexibility. You have to be creative, not boring and unimaginative like McPhee proves on a yearly basis. Maybe constrained is just another word for inept. Again like the board king Puck mentioned -- this team is made up of players who don't really like to go to war. And thats on the GM more than the coach. You can't squeeze warriors out of pvssies.

Posted by: maven1918 | March 17, 2009 5:15 PM | Report abuse

cstanton1,

A couple of years ago the knock on McPhee was that he just drafted big, tough Western Canadian kids?

Some of his tough D-men moves in the past have just not panned out. Yonkman comes to mind, big as a house but made out of egg shells and corn syrup.

I will hold my scorn until the puck drops in October. If by then no improvements are made on the backline I will be a McPhee hater again.

Posted by: FLDave | March 17, 2009 5:15 PM | Report abuse

@maven

Whew! That's a new one, If you want you can go back and read through 4 months of posts, but I'll save you some time. I NEVER once defended Schultz on this site or any site for that manner. I personally think Alzner should be up and Schultz should be sitting. But do I come on here and proclaim that I know more than GMGM or BB? No! You know why? Because I don't! It's falls on deaf ears to come on a blog and tell everyone what you would do if you ran the team, and quite frankly it's annoying!

So kindly explain to me how 30 other GMs in this league arent "CONSTRAINED" like our dearly beloved McFool is ? Other teams have or make their own flexibility.

Damn! the NHL has 31 teams now? Who's the new expansion team? Mavens Mighty Mites?

Posted by: ludeman95 | March 17, 2009 5:20 PM | Report abuse

maven,

"I've seen what Kunitz can do from teh moment he got plucked off waivers from Atlanta"

Didn't Atlanta claim him from the Ducks who then claimed him back from Atl two weeks later? What's you point?

Posted by: Steve_R | March 17, 2009 5:12 PM

point is that I've seen what Kunitz can do from the moment a team gave him a chance. And that should be enough for any team to not be scared away by his salary. Especially a team like the Caps who historically don't spend their money wisely when they finally do go out and spend it. This is the last team to shun someone like a Kunitz because of salary concerns considering some of the players they've paid money to recently.

Ludeman/Richphil- i can't keep up with your pillowtalk, not avoiding you but you don't say anything of great interest except overused lines that you think are funny. How many more times can you (are there two of you or are you the same) use the nhl video game joke ? BORING!@

Posted by: maven1918 | March 17, 2009 5:20 PM | Report abuse

All of our Jagr picks panned out pretty bad, if im not mistaken.

(i think yonkman was picked with one of those, not too sure.)

Posted by: richmondphil | March 17, 2009 5:20 PM | Report abuse

When did the Post start a comedy/hockey blog?

Posted by: boomer44 | March 17, 2009 5:21 PM | Report abuse

So how did you obtain your knowledge of what a two-way contract is?

the point is, is that you are trying to talk about something that you honestly have no clue about. I mean, really...you thought a two-way contract meant you didnt have to pass through waivers.

just give it up man. you are not cstanton1, you cannot back up what you say.

Posted by: richmondphil | March 17, 2009 5:22 PM | Report abuse

puck"guru", how many super bowls did george allen win exactly? how'd the skins fare after he traded away their future to win now? not so good.

if you can't hang on for the ride, then jump off now. please.

Posted by: dcsportsfan1 | March 17, 2009 5:22 PM | Report abuse

larry murphy sucks.

Posted by: richmondphil | March 17, 2009 5:23 PM | Report abuse

cstanton1

a lot on what will happen will depend on the playoffs. In the regular season, there's no doubt that some of the Caps inadequacies can be overcome with the incredible offensive talent that this team has.

We'll see what happens in the playoffs.

Keep in mind, it's been quite a while now that BB is repeating some of the stuff we're whining about. "Grit" (phil, stop your sarcastic (but funny) one worded post!) and traffic in front. If the coach keeps repeating it, maybe we can hope that in the off-season something will be done about it (and about defense as well).

Posted by: mauree | March 17, 2009 5:25 PM | Report abuse

Also, given GMGM's past, how can anyone hate him more now than..lets say early 2000s?

99-00 - 03-04 I hated McPhee.

Posted by: richmondphil | March 17, 2009 5:27 PM | Report abuse

cstanton1,

A couple of years ago the knock on McPhee was that he just drafted big, tough Western Canadian kids?

Some of his tough D-men moves in the past have just not panned out. Yonkman comes to mind, big as a house but made out of egg shells and corn syrup.

I will hold my scorn until the puck drops in October. If by then no improvements are made on the backline I will be a McPhee hater again.

Posted by: FLDave | March 17, 2009 5:15 PM


Funny thing Dave, when McPhee drafted Yonkman he drafted him mainly because he was a big guy who could skate well for his size. Concussions and bad knees later, that plan didn't work out. Irony is Yonkman only stuck around in hockey by following the Alex Henry route -- each was drafted for their size and potential to provide some offense, both never lived upto their size until they found themselves on the fringe, and both players redefined themselves as tough guys. But I digress :)

To make my point a little clearer with regards to the D -- McPhee's philosophy has been to only go after a big player IF that player shows some kind of offensive potential from the blueline. By doing so, he passes by a lot of solid defensive prospects whose primary asset is their ability to play in their own end and provide ruggedness. Nick Petrecki for example. And a slew of others. When you look around at some of the more notable respected defensive leaders of the past decade - Adam Foote, Jason Smith etc -- McPhee would NEVER have drafted those guys. He doesn't value those types of defnsemen unless they provide some kind of offensive potential. I have a serious problem with that philosophy.

The other part of this is, once he does draft a kid like a Schultz, there isn't much development done to encourage him to use his size more effectivly. If Schultz had somehow ended up in the Bruins or Flyers org, he'd be a lot more physical by this point.

Posted by: cstanton1 | March 17, 2009 5:28 PM | Report abuse

puck"guru", how many super bowls did george allen win exactly? how'd the skins fare after he traded away their future to win now? not so good.

if you can't hang on for the ride, then jump off now. please.

Posted by: dcsportsfan1 | March 17, 2009 5:22 PM

Shhhhh, don't wake him! His last post was at 3:15.

Posted by: ludeman95 | March 17, 2009 5:30 PM | Report abuse

Can a Adam Foote/Hannan type develop properly in our system though? Or is it going to revert to how we want him? Going off your last sentiments regarding Schultz....

Posted by: richmondphil | March 17, 2009 5:31 PM | Report abuse

To add, even a kid like Carlson who is really an exciting prospect because he plays both ways and is reminiscent of a Jovanovski type. Do you really think McPhee would have even looked at this kid if he wasn't primarily a puckmover with a booming shot? For my money, his strength and defensive presence would have been enough to get drafted in the 1st two rounds. But the Caps only targeted him because first and foremost he provides offense from the blueline. My point is, we pass up a lot of solid defensive players because they don't show offensive potential. And a lot of those players end up playing key roles on very successful teams.

Posted by: cstanton1 | March 17, 2009 5:32 PM | Report abuse

Can a Adam Foote/Hannan type develop properly in our system though? Or is it going to revert to how we want him? Going off your last sentiments regarding Schultz....

Posted by: richmondphil | March 17, 2009 5:31 PM


grreat question. Frankly, the answer is no.
lol

they will develop, but not as well as they would elsewhere. That being said, I'd still want them in our system so the next GM has a chance to use them to their fullest potential.

Posted by: cstanton1 | March 17, 2009 5:34 PM | Report abuse

great discussion fellas and ladies, i feel we made some progress today :)

Posted by: cstanton1 | March 17, 2009 5:35 PM | Report abuse

I was in a predisposition to disregard anything you say, but honestly a blog needs that hyper critical fan. Sure, tons of people try to be it, but like I said, they can't instantiate anything they claim like you do.

Plus, a rich knowledge and understanding of past Draft picks is always good to have around for dicussion. Even my memory isn't that sharp.

Posted by: richmondphil | March 17, 2009 5:40 PM | Report abuse

puck"guru", how many super bowls did george allen win exactly? how'd the skins fare after he traded away their future to win now? not so good.

if you can't hang on for the ride, then jump off now. please.

Posted by: dcsportsfan1 | March 17, 2009 5:22 PM

Shhhhh, don't wake him! His last post was at 3:15.

Posted by: ludeman95 | March 17, 2009 5:30 PM

isn't 3:15 about the time kids get out of school? uh oh....

Posted by: dcsportsfan1 | March 17, 2009 5:40 PM | Report abuse

maven1918

Kunitz is doing really well in Pittsburg. Guerin too. However, not sure how much is due to the fact they're good players, how much is due to the coach change, that was long overdue and longed by many Pens players apparently, and how much to the Pens changing gear it on for the playoffs race.

Personally I think neither of those would be a team changer for the Caps. I'd rather have a Holmstrom ($2.25M), or (yes, don't hate me) a Pronger (2.4M more than Kunitz but a monster D).

Anyway, here's to a strong game tonight to wash out yesterday's bitterness.


Posted by: mauree | March 17, 2009 5:44 PM | Report abuse

LET'S GO CAPS!!!

Posted by: ludeman95 | March 17, 2009 5:45 PM | Report abuse

I would've loved Kunitz or Antropov in terms of forwards, but this is only because I like both of them beforehand.

Posted by: richmondphil | March 17, 2009 5:45 PM | Report abuse

RP
[So how did you obtain your knowledge of what a two-way contract is?]

Is this in reference to me thanking a poster for explaining the Aucoin situation?
Is this what you're harping on as some kind of proof that my other points are all invalid ? gimme a break dude. I came on here and see that Aucoin's being scratched and it got my goat a little because he did play such an inspired game last night.

Posted by: maven1918 | March 17, 2009 5:48 PM | Report abuse

@maven1918 = troll.

*flings foam bat over to him*

Would you do the honors of hitting yourself over the head with it or should I? The pre-SC games are far from over and he's predicting that we're going to squeek in. Being #3, on the path to possibly #2, in the Eastern Conference can hardly be seen as "squeeking in". But of course, you'd prefer to sit on puckguru's shoulders like Mini-me from the Austin Powers movies and thumb your nose at logic and reason. I suppose you could be worse. Like a Pitts fan.

Posted by: LeftCoastCapsFan | March 17, 2009 5:49 PM | Report abuse

dcsportsfan1

Apparently, a few kiddies were let out early, or were playing hookie.

Posted by: Greg S. | March 17, 2009 5:50 PM | Report abuse

All of our Jagr picks panned out pretty bad, if im not mistaken.

(i think yonkman was picked with one of those, not too sure.)

Posted by: richmondphil | March 17, 2009 5:20 PM

i am going by memory here so excuse if any inaccuracies.

far as i recall, we traded beech, sivek and lupaschuk for Jagr. All 3 of those players had some balance of size and skill. Lupaschuk had a good minor league career with the Pens then went to Europe. This past offseason he came back for one last tryout - with the Ducks. He looked out of place and was cut.

Yonkman I'm pretty sure was compensation the NHL gave us because we chose not to sign Nick Boynton (I think he had a diabetic issue at the time). So they gave us a compensatory pick and we used that to select Kelowna Rocket Nolan Yonkman.

And I know everyone talks about the fehr vs Getzlaf fiasco. And that was a bad moment in Caps history. But I would have been happy getting Mark Stuart. Stuart and Seabrook were the real studs of that middle first round pack.

Posted by: cstanton1 | March 17, 2009 5:55 PM | Report abuse

@maven1918: What qualifications do you possess that would place in a position to criticize how McPhee is running the Capitals organization? If you have nothing more than the sheer passion to dedicate 7 hours of your day playing hockey on your Playstation and/or Xbox or consistently believe you gain credibility to contradict people, I'd hardly call you an expert nor a person whose opinion would matter to the success of the Capitals.

But keep dreaming. Like someone said, the NHL will come knocking if you post more bright ideas on here. Keep holding your breath for that.

Posted by: LeftCoastCapsFan | March 17, 2009 5:58 PM | Report abuse

Mauree
[maven1918
Kunitz is doing really well in Pittsburg. Guerin too. However, not sure how much is due to the fact they're good players, how much is due to the coach change, that was long overdue and longed by many Pens players apparently, and how much to the Pens changing gear it on for the playoffs race]

Kunitz was a no brainer move Mauree. He's a proven young player. Even when hes not scoring goals he's valuable. Can you say that about guys like Flash, Fehr and some others? No. Caps need guys who paly the game like Dino did. Like bees who buzz around the net and don't take no for an answer. Not the perimeter fancypantsers we have who show up to play once in a while. You cannot have a 3 or 4 game slump once you hit the playoffs. Every shift counts.

Posted by: maven1918 | March 17, 2009 5:59 PM | Report abuse

@maven1918: What qualifications do you possess that would place in a position to criticize how McPhee is running the Capitals organization? If you have nothing more than the sheer passion to dedicate 7 hours of your day playing hockey on your Playstation and/or Xbox or consistently believe you gain credibility to contradict people, I'd hardly call you an expert nor a person whose opinion would matter to the success of the Capitals.

But keep dreaming. Like someone said, the NHL will come knocking if you post more bright ideas on here. Keep holding your breath for that.

Posted by: LeftCoastCapsFan | March 17, 2009 5:58 PM


Now THAT is very trollish. Nothing hockey-related in that post except some kindergarten type slams. BORING! Its remarkable how many of you use XBox and Nintendo references to try and bolster yourselves. Very pathetic.

Posted by: maven1918 | March 17, 2009 6:01 PM | Report abuse

Worst McPhee DRAFT CHOICE EVER = Jeff Lucky

P UUU K E

Typical GM draft pick-> Small speedy forward who didn't compete hard in the tough areas because he had no heart.

He should have just picked up Jordin Tootoo insetad

How many of you so called caps fans remember or know that? not many i would presume, most of you sound like you're fairly new to the game. No efin sens of history. Its you sirs who are the trolls. Begone!

Posted by: maven1918 | March 17, 2009 6:05 PM | Report abuse

Let us all hope for a better effort tonight against the Panthers, who are just on the fence for the playoffs.

Posted by: ejohnsto | March 17, 2009 6:05 PM | Report abuse

Hindsight is 20/20

Posted by: ludeman95 | March 17, 2009 6:07 PM | Report abuse

That's CRAP that Jose is starting tonight. Varly deserves to start, after all, that was what was planned.

Posted by: rachel216 | March 17, 2009 6:21 PM | Report abuse

Hindsight is 20/20

Posted by: ludeman95 | March 17, 2009 6:07 PM

And drafts are all crapshoots :)

sorry, couldn't resist.

Certain hindsight is 20/20. But when there's a clear philosophical direction engineered by a Gen Mgr, then his decisions are pre-determined for the most part. I can scan a list of prospects and generally get a feel for which ones McPhee will avoid from while other (very qualified) GMs will salivate over the same players.

McPhee felt there was a dire lack of top-shelf talent, and he went out and at the expense of a lot of other things, tried to fill it over and over again. He drafted enough of the same type of player that after enough trial and error he was able to stock this org with skilled labor. He doesn't go looking for quality power forwards, quality checking forwards, nor does he go hunting for defensive defensemen. There's a serious lack of balance in his drafting and we're 3 or 4 deep in the same kind of prospects. Once in a while he'll take a chance on a different type of player and if that player doesn't pan out, he bails on that philosophy. Certain GMs can always find power forwards like Shanny/Guerin (Devils) and defensive defensemen like Smith/Souray (Devils) because they place a premium on those qualities that McPhee does not. And the better GMs will draft for balance. The reason I don't think McPhee will really 'fix' the holes is because I doubt he thinks those holes exist to the degree they actually do.

edit: before anyone nails me on the Souray thing, he was actually drafted as a defensive defenseman with toughness, he just developed his offensive touch years later :)

Posted by: cstanton1 | March 17, 2009 6:22 PM | Report abuse

@cstanton1

That wasn't at you, you actually bring knowledge to this forum. Thank You

Posted by: ludeman95 | March 17, 2009 6:30 PM | Report abuse

no worries bro, i knew it, just wanted to chime in on what i think is sometimes a lack of accountability come draft day. McPhee has improved his drafting in some ways and definitely upgraded the sheer skill level.

Posted by: cstanton1 | March 17, 2009 6:45 PM | Report abuse

I also thought Roberts would be a nice pick-up for the stretch run. Can't question his heart & willingness to stand in from of the net and get an ugly goal. Also, the old man can still throw 'em.

Posted by: capsfan-yorkpa | March 17, 2009 7:02 PM | Report abuse

Aucoin WAS the Caps' best player last night, from where I sat in my living room.

And Boudreau couldn't be more accurate when he spoke about our unwillingness to work hard in the first period or two. This team just does NOT get itself 'up' for teams that are out of the race.

Bring on the playoffs, already!

I am refraining from speaking about our defense at the moment, because it will only make me mad. At least we get Alzner back for the playoffs, and Greener back tonight.

Green must skate fewer minutes. His play in the 3rd period lately has been atrocious.

Posted by: notfadeaway | March 17, 2009 7:31 PM | Report abuse

Caps are gonna win this one big.

Posted by: reesem37 | March 17, 2009 7:41 PM | Report abuse

@maven1918:

Hardly a troll. I'm not going around talking negative about the Caps like I'm a subject matter expert. I understand the limitations of complaining about the team on here and am resigned to ride the highs and the lows. You, troll, enjoy making snarky comments about the team and engaging yourself in drivel that has little to no impact on the performance of the team.

The Caps will play as they play with or without your input, maven1918. Sadly, I don't think you understand that.

Posted by: LeftCoastCapsFan | March 17, 2009 9:05 PM | Report abuse

It's 11:56pm, so I'm assumming all of the little pimple - faced juveniles have been tucked in by now.
@ pokerface1201 ---- You are like a breath of fresh air. I've always believed there were fans like you out there. You've justified my faith.
@ maven 1918 ------ You are absolutely correct. The irony of it is that during his playing days, McPhee was one of the grittiest, toughest s.o.b's in the entire league. Go figure.
@ CTCapsPhan ------ "The LONG haul?" This constitutes an eternity. Obviously, you and Job must be blood relatives.(smile) Man, look. I was on board when they made Greg Joly their very first pick. I lived through the Robert Picard days. As well as the Bobby Carpenter, Ryan Walter, Gates Duchesne ( One of my All - Time favorite Caps ), and yes, the Rod Langway, Larry Murphy eras as well. So, I know. Been there. Done that. AND, I'M FRESH OUT OF PATIENCE.
Look. I'm a Pittsburgh, Pa. native ( Homewood, to be exact ). And, I've been a Pirates and Steelers fan since before I entered Kindergarten ( Sept. 1950 ). So, I KNOW about being a "Patient" fan. Before 1960 ( Mazeroski hit one over the 406 ft. mark in left field to beat the Yankees( Forbes Field ), the Pirates had been the laughing stock of the National League since Pie Traynor used to play 3rd. base. And, the Steelers? Oh, my god. Prior to their very first playoff game in 1974 ( Or was it "75" ), THEY'D NEVER WON ANY KIND OF CHAMPIONSHIP. NO KIND. EVER!! And, they were one of the original NFL franchises.
So, yea, I KNOW what being patient is. But, I'm 63 years old now. TO HELL WITH PATIENCE!! I want to win NOW! TODAY! YESTERDAY!! NEXT WEEK!! I'm not listening to any more "Rebuild" crap. I've been hearing that for SEVERAL DECADES. Can you dig it?!!

Posted by: Puckguru | March 18, 2009 12:23 AM | Report abuse

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