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Boudreau Sticks With Changes (Updated)

Based on the morning skate, it looks like Coach Bruce Boudreau will stick with the changes he made during yesterday's practice. That means veteran Sergei Fedorov will center the top line with Alex Ovechkin and Viktor Kozlov tonight in Game 4, and rookie Nicklas Backstrom will skate between Brooks Laich and Alexander Semin.

Here's how they lined up:

Ovechkin-Fedorov-Kozlov (A.O. didn't skate)
Laich-Backstrom-Semin (Semin didn't skate)
Cooke-Steckel-Fehr (Fehr up)
Brashear-Gordon-Bradley (Bradley down)

Defenseman Jeff Schultz, meantime, won't play because of back spasms.
So the pairings will look like this:
Morrisonn-Green
Poti-Jurcina
Erskine-Eminger

Update: Boudreau said Huet will start in net (Huet ranks last in save percentage in the playoffs at .884, just behind Martin Biron's .886). But Boudreau wouldn't say much more about the lineup changes. In fact, he wouldn't even commit to going with those lines tonight. I'm guessing it's probably just a little gamesmanship, rather than indecision on his part.

"I think the jerseys were just up in the stall," Boudreau said. "So I still haven't made the decision quite frankly."

Asked (for what seems like the 12th time) what the Flyers are doing to disrupt them, Boudreau said: "The problem is we're trying to stickhandle over the blue line, rather than getting it deep and doing what we do. Sometimes the stage, being the playoffs, everything is scrutinized. We've got so many guys that are in their first playoffs. They're thinking, 'I've got to make the good play, I've got do this, I've got to do that.'"

"We need to get back to simple hockey, and dump it in and finish our checks and win the battles in the corners. We've got the biggest team in the NHL. We've got to play to our strengths - and we're not."

Boudreau also said he plans to reduce Backstrom's playing time. Backstrom has one point (a secondary assist) in three games.

"I played him a little too much last game," Boudreau said. "I played him 24 minutes. I think I've got to pull back on him a little so he'll have the energy to go on. All Europeans who come over for the first time have the tendency to hit a wall because the schedule is so long."

I'll have another update before the game.

By Tarik El-Bashir  |  April 17, 2008; 10:13 AM ET
 
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Next: Tonight's Lineup for Game 4

Comments

so who is in GOAL?????? OLIE OLIE OLIE!!!!!

Posted by: mj | April 17, 2008 10:23 AM | Report abuse

Tarik, Do you know who is gettin the nod in goal 2nite?

Hip Hip Huet or Godzilla?

Posted by: Zack Attack | April 17, 2008 10:24 AM | Report abuse

a must-win game, for sure

Posted by: bonzai | April 17, 2008 10:24 AM | Report abuse

It sounds like it should work, that first line has got to be more difficult for the Philly D to contain

Posted by: uncatim | April 17, 2008 10:24 AM | Report abuse

Zack Attack

Hip Hip Huet is the absolute worst cheer nick name EVER.

Posted by: Yosh | April 17, 2008 10:27 AM | Report abuse

@Tarik

Is it true that 20,000 Flyers fans are sitting outside waiting because they have garbarge jobs and nothing better to do?

Posted by: Anonymous | April 17, 2008 10:27 AM | Report abuse

i like the line changes but i don't understand why bruce isn't sticking ollie in goal for tonight. . .briere won't knock ollie off his skates! . . .and while huet has played well, he hasn't made the big stops when needed . . .

btw, watching the rangers/devils last night, looks like rangers took a page from the flyers book, pounding on marty brodeur on his back any number of times on the way to their 3-1 series lead. ..

Posted by: max | April 17, 2008 10:29 AM | Report abuse

I doubt BB will announce who's in goal until he absolutely has too.

Let's hope these boys come out swinging. I'd like to see a good series.

Posted by: Go Skins Go | April 17, 2008 10:30 AM | Report abuse

We need Kozlov to step up his game. He is a veteran player and should be expected to raise his game come playoff time. Instead, he's dropped off A LOT

Posted by: GoUnited | April 17, 2008 10:32 AM | Report abuse

i thought kozlov was the bright spot on the top line if there was one. maybe i'm crazy.

Posted by: crbdcap | April 17, 2008 10:36 AM | Report abuse

Tarik, has BB commented any further on his players not standing up for their goalie? This seems to me like a lack of will or heart. I can handle losing, but not when there isn't heart. I think it is safe to say that only a portion of the lineup is showing the heart needed to win in the playoffs.

Posted by: Big Issues | April 17, 2008 10:36 AM | Report abuse

The Caps are going to go down 3-1 tonight in the series... The Flyers are just too good! Semin and Backstrom together? Might as well throw in the towel right now... no chance the Caps are going to win tonight. The Flyers are just too tough of a team... The Caps are weak... Carolina would have done a better job against Philly.
Sorry to say this - but the Caps will not win tonight... get out the butter... the Caps are toast.

Posted by: 828 | April 17, 2008 10:36 AM | Report abuse

I am not sure how to calculate dropping off to zero which is what Kozlov had...has he even been dressed?

Posted by: Rich c | April 17, 2008 10:37 AM | Report abuse

We need the Caps to stop sleeping and wake up to the reality that they are in a Stanley Cup playoff game!

Posted by: doughless | April 17, 2008 10:38 AM | Report abuse

The crowed at the Dungeen of Doom is going to be too loud for the Caps... no chance to get a win.

Posted by: 828 | April 17, 2008 10:38 AM | Report abuse

Message to Bradley. Hit Briere. Hit him hard and hit him often. Let him pay the price.

Message to Cooke. Hit that friggin Prospal. Hit him hard and hit him often. Let him pay the price.

Posted by: hithit | April 17, 2008 10:39 AM | Report abuse

Wonder what Stephen Peat is up to these days?

Wouldn't mind seeing him on the ice tonite for a shift - a shift that Brie(re)happens to be on. PJ Stock anyone? :)

Posted by: Chris | April 17, 2008 10:39 AM | Report abuse

What about huet? if he is going to be in net tonight, we might as well skip the game and just head back to the verizon center and prepare for the final handshakes. Huet is not getting it done. We need to turn to a man who has been there before...and had success. Huet in net tonight = guaranteed loss.

Posted by: dan in dc | April 17, 2008 10:40 AM | Report abuse

Let's help Tarik write tomorrow's story. Choose from one of the following endings to his lede sentence for tomorrow's story, or write your own:

The Washington Capitals -- outplayed, outhustled, and outfought in Games 2 and 3 of this series -- proved tonight that they:

a. can pick themselves up off the mat and beat the Flyers at their own game.

b. can still play their own game with their backs against the wall.

c. can try their best but ultimately have no answer for the Flyers bruising tactics.

d. can't duplicate their late-season heroics and totally collapsed to the Flyers' relentless pressure.

Posted by: Jim B | April 17, 2008 10:41 AM | Report abuse

@828

The "Arena of Anger" is going to be loud tonight?

They may set the record for most boo's in a professional sporting event.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 17, 2008 10:41 AM | Report abuse

Backie & Semin on the same line.....how about Cooke or Bradley and move one of these 2 to the third line. i think the Caps need to spread the grinders out over each of the lines.

Posted by: doughless | April 17, 2008 10:42 AM | Report abuse

Good luck boys. You can change a lot of opinions of a lot of people tonight by winning. Let's bring it home with the lead in the series.

Posted by: fishman | April 17, 2008 10:42 AM | Report abuse

828:

I hope this is part of your reverse psychology mode that you employed during the final two weeks of the season. I think Brashear needs to butter Brieres toast though, nothing good ever comes out of Buffalo.

Posted by: G-Rub | April 17, 2008 10:43 AM | Report abuse

Huet is only what, 10-2 in his last twelve games? I don't mind our chances with either goalie in. The same argument for not pulling Huet is the same argument we had for not pulling Olie - bad defencemen.

I don't think either goalie would be a bad decision.

I don't mind Hip Hip Huet so much either.

Optimism isn't a bad thing, sirs and Boo/jill.

Posted by: Whiter Mage | April 17, 2008 10:43 AM | Report abuse

What happened to Huet's comments ... if you when you stay ... lose you're out? He had mentioned that as policy for goalies on a previous team. Time for Olie in goal.

Posted by: dk | April 17, 2008 10:44 AM | Report abuse

Back to back performance-based line changes three games into your first round playoff series, including one to your top line? That's an encouraging sign. The Caps have been outplayed by the Flyers' offense at even strength throughout the series. The burden is to come up with a defensive fix, unless they plan on winning a bunch of 6-5 games the rest of the way.

Posted by: Sweet | April 17, 2008 10:46 AM | Report abuse

Tarik,

Well I'm glad BB is treating the splinter in his team's finger instead of that gaping gunshot wound to its heart.

I don't care what the lines are b/c we are not going to win unless we start firing back at the Flyers.

Green finally did that they other night. He got called out for it by his coach.

Huet finally had enough and fought back. He too got called out for it by his coach.

The caps are playing like gutless pukes. I'm embarrassed to be a Caps fan right now.

I wish Dale Hunter was here. He'd tell be to "go in the corner and look for something" while Dale takes care of Hartnell and Briere.

Posted by: KillerT | April 17, 2008 10:48 AM | Report abuse

Read the other articles and posts people.
BB already said Huet is in ...

Posted by: UA | April 17, 2008 10:50 AM | Report abuse

Tarik, what about the goalie situation? Will it be Kolzig or Huet?

Posted by: Asher | April 17, 2008 10:50 AM | Report abuse

@ hithit

My sentiments exactly

Posted by: Fat Jack | April 17, 2008 10:51 AM | Report abuse

Wow, how quickly everyone forgets how Huet stood on his head to get us into the playoffs. First we're bandwagoners, next we'll be accused of being fair weather.

Posted by: SuperCaps | April 17, 2008 10:51 AM | Report abuse

good idea to keep sitting laing
he wouldnt play with the intensity our regular forwards do
After all backstrom brash cooke gordon
were all monsters of aggression last game
WHAT A JOKE

Posted by: wendel | April 17, 2008 10:51 AM | Report abuse

@828 -

Good to have you back in your role -- a reminder of happier times. It's also fun to read the posts from those that don't get it.

Posted by: Hook | April 17, 2008 10:53 AM | Report abuse

Did anyone see the quote BB made today "WE PLAY BY THE RULES" that's Bulls**t.....eye for an eye!!!!!!!

Posted by: Fat Jack | April 17, 2008 10:53 AM | Report abuse

Supercaps -
I can't agree more. I think forums like this really let fans show their a$$ off.

Posted by: C-A-P-S CAPS CAPS CAPSs | April 17, 2008 10:54 AM | Report abuse

They just look tight, all the whiffed passes and shots, it's been ridiculous. They didn't really give up too many goals down the stretch, it seems like they're realizing the Flyers can score on them quickly if they're not careful, everyone seems like they're sitting back a little bit. Frustrating.

Posted by: loosen up | April 17, 2008 10:55 AM | Report abuse

Tarik

Any chance you could start a negative thread -- a place where all the pessimists and haters can go for the day to wallow in their misery. The way it is now, the blog is creating bad mojo/karma/whatever you want to call it. Need to send team positive vibes.

Posted by: Hook | April 17, 2008 10:56 AM | Report abuse

I had a better opinion about Caps fans.

They want the worst goalie in the league in save percentage this season to be in the net for the most crucial game of the season? Because Hartnell or lil punk Briere won't run him? What if they shoot at him? Have you people even think what will happen then?

I rest my case. Go ahead and bash me.

Posted by: King Huet | April 17, 2008 10:59 AM | Report abuse

Make sure you have your tickets for game 5. Were coming back 2-2!!

Woooohooooo!!!!!

Flyers Fans...You love it!!!!!

Posted by: SA-Town | April 17, 2008 10:59 AM | Report abuse

What bothers me most about this series is not that we are losing. But we are being punk'd by Philly. It is clear who the alpha dog is right now. I don't know about the players but I really don't like the Caps being anybody's #$itch. We need to play the way we did in the third period of the first game. Sure the Flyers weren't the same either. But we were hitting them like crazy and showed complete dominance in every phase of the game.

This is a 'fight in the dog' game. How much fight does our dog have? We'll find out in about 8 hours.

Posted by: kenwood | April 17, 2008 11:02 AM | Report abuse

Having to endure the local broadcast of the games up here in Philly, unfortunately. While I understand they are the home team announcers, the past two games I've just had to turn down the sound. It got even more bizarre when they showed between period game stats. In addition the usual "shots", "hits", "faceoffs", etc. they were showing stats like "Failed clears" and how the Caps were leading in that category. Huh? I didn't realize this was a sanctioned stat kept by the league. Anyone else ever see this? There was some other weird stat they showed just to show the Flyers dominance, but come on that's just ridiculous!

Posted by: geauxcaps | April 17, 2008 11:03 AM | Report abuse

Never thought I'd say this but I miss Brendan Witt...

Posted by: tokyo fan | April 17, 2008 11:05 AM | Report abuse

And the Chief and Randy Holt and Mark Tinordi and Scotty, of course...

Please just deck someone tonight. Time to beat down that puke Briere. Make them pay the price. Must win, tonight. Must win!

Posted by: tokyo fan | April 17, 2008 11:08 AM | Report abuse

can we get a prayer as well?

Posted by: honed | April 17, 2008 11:08 AM | Report abuse

Allright I'm heading down to the Wach now... Any hockey fans going to the game and want to head down early, We'll be BBQing, having some beer pong games in the parking lot, and shooting some pucks around if you care to join. I'm wearing a bright Blue and Yellow jersey.

@Mauree and Lee
If you guys really want me to stop posting in here i'll respect that and stop coming back.
the exorcism thing made me chuckle at least.

GOING TO BE A GREAT GAME TONIGHT!!! HERE'S HOPING FOR SOME OVERTIME ACTION FINALLY!

Posted by: Jeff | April 17, 2008 11:08 AM | Report abuse

Overheard Ovie whisper this to Kimmo:

"I must break you."

Posted by: Hew | April 17, 2008 11:09 AM | Report abuse

King Huet

They want the worst goalie in the league in save percentage this season to be in the net for the most crucial game of the season?

Go ahead and bash me.

I'm not going to bash you. But I will encourage you to look at both goalies' stats since the trade deadline. I think you'd be surprised. After you finish doing that take a look at both goalies' career playoff stats. Again, I think you'll be surprised.

I'm not necessarily pushing for a switch in goal, but the bottom line is that Huet is not getting it done right now. Yes the defense has been shaky in front of him, but a save % lower than Kolzig's season save % is not acceptable (forgetting about GAA).

Posted by: Yosh | April 17, 2008 11:09 AM | Report abuse

@geauxcaps

The failed clears thing is a very important point in the game. That is a big problem that we have had as far as protecting the puck, and bringing it out of our zone. (Jurchina is the worst example)

A failed clear can be looked at as a fumble between your own 20-30 yrd line in football...It will bury you in the end.

Posted by: SA-Town | April 17, 2008 11:10 AM | Report abuse

@ SuperCaps

I havent forgotten what Huet did for us but Gainey had reservations about Huet being a playoff goalie. We might be seeing why...

I'd love to see Olie come back and save the team this year tho. And it should lower Huet's asking price next year.


Posted by: MetalCap | April 17, 2008 11:10 AM | Report abuse

Anybody remember when Acton,Poulin,Toochet played for the CAPS?

Posted by: cc | April 17, 2008 11:12 AM | Report abuse

Huet tonight - if they lose - BB will give Olie a going-away present and let him start game 5

Posted by: Hew | April 17, 2008 11:12 AM | Report abuse

@Jeff

Most of your posts I've seen have seemed like regular hockey talk to me. Post away.

Wish I could be at the game at Wach, but will be watching at home. Enjoy.

Posted by: geauxcaps | April 17, 2008 11:13 AM | Report abuse

Wendell,

I can see playing Laing. Not a bad idea. But Brash has played well. No need to call him out. In fact, he's been the team's most consistent scorer. Now, he probably needs to pick a fight sometime to light a fire under these guys. BB's comments about following the rules concerns me a bit because the Flyers aren't doing that, and they're intimidating the hell out of the Caps.

Posted by: Colin | April 17, 2008 11:13 AM | Report abuse

Yes, failed clears is a stat kept in the press box.

Its a good measure of how well teams are executing in their own zone.

Posted by: JamesD | April 17, 2008 11:14 AM | Report abuse

@ Jeff

Bright blue and yellow jersey, is that the one with Mickey on it?

Posted by: Anonymous | April 17, 2008 11:16 AM | Report abuse

Now I have to ask this question:

In light of these playoff games, how many still want Huet to resign with us and be the franchise goalie for the future?

Posted by: Danny | April 17, 2008 11:16 AM | Report abuse

Actually, Jschon, we do need a prayer. Work on it.

as Patton said:

Patton: Yes, let's see if you can't get God working with us on this thing.
Chaplain: It'll take a pretty thick rug for that kind of praying.
Patton: I don't care if it takes a flying carpet.

Patton: I assure you, sir, because of my intimate relations with the Almighty, if you write a good prayer, we'll have good [a Caps win]. I expect that prayer within an hour.

Posted by: Leeguru | April 17, 2008 11:16 AM | Report abuse

Frankly Jeff, even though I don't agree with your rooting interests, I think you are more level headed than some of the regular posters in here.

But it does beg to question why you don't post with your own fanbase. Maybe you are the exception to the rule that Flyers fans are all idiots? You had to come to us for intellectual stimulation?

Posted by: kenwood | April 17, 2008 11:18 AM | Report abuse

@Yosh

Thank you for not bashing me. I am serious. I know someone will do it though.

If it would be Kolzig vintange 1998, I'd be the first to vote for him in the net. But he is not anymore an elite goalie he was. So his playoff stats are useless. It's like asking Dale Hunter to play tonight. Why on Earth do you think Kolzig will come out after riding the pine for three weeks and play like he is 28 years old?

Kolzig is more of religion or cult, and the cultists don't follow the logic.

Posted by: King Huet | April 17, 2008 11:18 AM | Report abuse

@ Yosh

I am with you on the Hip Hip nickname. I cringe everytime i see it written somewhere or hear it.

EEECK!

Posted by: Angela | April 17, 2008 11:19 AM | Report abuse

King Huet -

Thank you.

It is truly amazing how people can change their opinions so quickly. This thread is going nowhere. I'll be sure not to click the comments link today, in fear of hearing someone say OV is over-rated because he hasn't scored 6 goals in the playoffs.

Posted by: Loaf Kolzig | April 17, 2008 11:20 AM | Report abuse

@ Danny : I don't think anyone would expect Huet to be a "franchise" goalie. We have 3 really good goalies coming up through the minors (including another Russian to add to our roster). Huet would more like be a 3 year stop gap until those kids are ready for the NHL.

Posted by: SuperCaps | April 17, 2008 11:21 AM | Report abuse

King Huet

If it would be Kolzig vintange 1998, I'd be the first to vote for him in the net. But he is not anymore an elite goalie he was. So his playoff stats are useless

I couldn't agree more about him not being in the same form as 1998. I'm not asking you to look solely at 1998, but his entire career in the playoffs...yes he took the Caps the farthest during that season, but he's been there since then. And while he's not a young man anymore, his stats look significantly better since Huet got here and he got more rest.

Not too mention that for whatever reason some goalies perform well in the playoffs and some do not. That's why I brought up the playoff statistics, Huet's career playoff numbers are not pretty at all and I fail to see how Kolzig could do any worse.

Posted by: Yosh | April 17, 2008 11:22 AM | Report abuse

@colin
brashear is supposed to protect ov, huet and our skilled players
he has failed miserably at this thus i call him out
if he chickens out the whole team follows his lead
we have been so outmuscled and our muscle guy has done dick

Posted by: wendel | April 17, 2008 11:22 AM | Report abuse

Calling for Kolzig because of playoff stats that were last added to 5 years ago seems a little odd. He had a good season that year, but hasn't come close to those numbers since then.

Posted by: Kolzig | April 17, 2008 11:23 AM | Report abuse

If it would be Kolzig vintange 1998, I'd be the first to vote for him in the net.

If that were the case, we wouldn't have had to make the trade for Huet in the first place.

Posted by: @ King Huet | April 17, 2008 11:24 AM | Report abuse

@Jeff
I though I already answered your question before you even asked it: as far as I'm concerned you're cool man, I enjoy the discussions.

I'm more optimistic today. Not particularly about the game, but I'm less negative. It has been an exciting season :). I think we can win tonight, especially if we gain momentum early in the game.

Everybody knows the keys to the game:

1) D: Clear the crease. Hit HARD. Scare the bejeesus out of anybody near Huet.

2) Ovie... UNLEASH THE FURY.

Posted by: mauree | April 17, 2008 11:25 AM | Report abuse

@JamesD

Fair enough, just never saw that particular stat highlighted in this way before.

Posted by: geauxcaps | April 17, 2008 11:26 AM | Report abuse

I'm not in the camp of starting Olie because of his playoff stats, because I also agree that was a decade ago. I mean, remember Feds in the playoffs a decade ago? He's been one of our best players, but he is still not Feds of circa 1998.

BUT, Olie's stats before Huet, his last 20-something starts, are not bad. Huet just had slightly better stats. And now Huet does not look good. Bad defense? Absolutely. Being run over? Definately. But, this is the playoffs and sometimes a team gets sorely outplayed and the goalie needs to steal a game (see: Dan Ellis). I haven't seen that from Huet yet.

I think he should have been pulled after the 1st period last game quite frankly.

Posted by: Angela | April 17, 2008 11:26 AM | Report abuse

is this annoying? did clark skate in the double super secret practice that you didnt see tarik???

Posted by: crbdcap | April 17, 2008 11:26 AM | Report abuse

Huet has stopped everything he has seen. Not his fault so far. Protect him and clear the crease better - let him see the puck - he will make the stop and not give up the 10ft rebound that kolzig is prone to do.

Posted by: Hew | April 17, 2008 11:26 AM | Report abuse

Did anyone see the quote BB made today "WE PLAY BY THE RULES" that's Bulls**t.....eye for an eye!!!!!!!

Posted by: Fat Jack | April 17, 2008 10:53 AM

What do you expect from a former Hyannisport President. We need a little more Charlestown Chief tonight.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 17, 2008 11:26 AM | Report abuse

SuperCaps,

I'm really just talking about next year (not 3 years down the road).

I think we are definitely going to be a playoff team next year as well. So the question is, who do we want in goal for NEXT year. I think (and I hope) that both Olie and Huet are going to walk, so we can get some fresh young blood in goal.

Posted by: Danny | April 17, 2008 11:29 AM | Report abuse

Hew

Huet has stopped everything he has seen. Not his fault so far. Protect him and clear the crease better - let him see the puck - he will make the stop and not give up the 10ft rebound that kolzig is prone to do.

Maybe you're not watching the same games as me...but atleast half of the goals he has let in were a direct result of a rebound or a relatively clear shot from atleast the circles.

Posted by: Yosh | April 17, 2008 11:29 AM | Report abuse

to help get you in the mood:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5i_D6oQO6b8

Posted by: Hew | April 17, 2008 11:29 AM | Report abuse

Danny

who do we want in goal for NEXT year. I think (and I hope) that both Olie and Huet are going to walk, so we can get some fresh young blood in goal.

Ummmm...who? What young blood are you talking about? Are there new goalies hitting the market? Outside of Machensy, there are no young nhl ready goalies out there...and the more seasoned keepers don't look much stronger than a Huet.

Posted by: Yosh | April 17, 2008 11:30 AM | Report abuse

While I understand that we didn't have time to call anyone from Hershey up, since they are in their own playoffs too, but I REALLY hate the fact that Jurcina isn't riding the pine. he's been AWFUL. I REALLY hope and pray that tonight doesn't turn into a massacre.

Posted by: IrresistibleForce | April 17, 2008 11:31 AM | Report abuse

This has been said before and I am going to reiterate. You can't win in the Stanley Cup Playoffs when your front end players are European. Tell me one team that has had European players as their front line players and have won the cup.
72-73 73-74 Flyers: Macleash, Barber and Clarke
80's Islanders: Bossy, Trottier,Smith
80's Oilers: Gretzky, Messier, Fuhr
90' Penuins: Lemiuex, Francis, Barrasso, Recchi
90's Wings: Yzerman, Chelios, Shannahan, Osgood & Vernon
00's Devils: Stevens, Brodeur, Neidermyer,
00's Avs: Sakic, Foote, Roy
04 Tampa Bay: St Louis, Vinnie & Richards
06 Carolina: Brind'Amour,Recchi, Ward,
07 Anaheim: Neidermyer, Giguere, Pronger

Yes, there are notable exceptions like Federov, Forsberg, Lidstrom, Hasek, Jagr, Elias etc. But they have been highly skilled compliments to the team not the main nucleus. The Caps are built exclusively around a nucleus of young highly skilled other side of the pond players who tend to not understand the physical demands of the NHL playoffs until they have experienced them several times. You have to have some skilled Canadiens alongside these talented Europeans that will bring the attitude you need.

Posted by: 2008Stanley | April 17, 2008 11:32 AM | Report abuse

@ Danny : Have you seen the list of UFA goalies that are gonna be available next year? I'd love to see who out of that junk heap you think could come in here and do a better job than Huet with Kolzig or Johnson backing him up. That is unless you're saying you're willing to bring up one of the kids and possibly ruining them before they're ready for prime time.

Posted by: SuperCaps | April 17, 2008 11:34 AM | Report abuse

Danny, for the right contract (3 years, about 4 mil a season) I still want Huet as the #1.

It's not his fault nobody is even attempting to give him a view of the puck, nor his fault that the team (both offensively and defensively) hasn't shown up. While he has let in a couple of questionable goals, there's NO question the team in front of him is leaving him out to dry.

We have seen what he can do when the team executes properly.

Posted by: Jeff | April 17, 2008 11:35 AM | Report abuse

It doesn't matter who is in goal tonight - the Caps won't win. You people are crazy... the Caps have no chance tonight. Philly is just too tough... they are a quicker team too! Biron is not going to get roughed up and most likely, he will be a brick wall tonight - not letting anything through.

Jeff - you should def stay and chat. I really really want you to stay. You are not annoying like other people have said and you talk about the Caps like you have watched them all season! Keep it up - see you soon fan of the Flyers.

Posted by: 828 | April 17, 2008 11:36 AM | Report abuse

2008Stanley

90's Wings: Yzerman, Chelios, Shannahan, Osgood & Vernon

Yeah the Russian 5 didn't play any part of the Red Wing cups...I've never heard of any of these guys.

Igor Larionov
Vyacheslav Fetisov
Sergei Fedorov
Vyacheslav Kozlov
Vladimir Konstantinov

"The unit playing an instrumental role during the Red Wings' success of that decade, including helping to capture the 1997 Stanley Cup. They were often noted for their skill and ability on the ice together; the Wings would almost always go on to win the game after one of them scored."

Posted by: Yosh | April 17, 2008 11:36 AM | Report abuse

lol @ 2008Stanley - soooooo we're just supposed to blow the whole thing up? Trade Ovie, Semin and Backs to the highest bidders? Because clearly we can't win with these guys....

Posted by: SuperCaps | April 17, 2008 11:36 AM | Report abuse

2008Stanley

Forgetting about the fact that foreign born players weren't really available until the 90s. Prior to that it was almost impossible for them to get to the United States as most were from Eastern Europe. There was this little thing called the Cold War going on at that point.

Your argurment is flawed. Not to sound like a deek, but the internet is free. Try doing a little research instead of posting propoganda.

Posted by: Yosh | April 17, 2008 11:39 AM | Report abuse

Yosh,

I see your point. That's why I am a little concerned about our goaltending situation for next year.

Do you think it's possible that we get rid of both 37 and 38, and make a trade for a goalie from another team during the offseason?

Posted by: Danny | April 17, 2008 11:40 AM | Report abuse

@wendel

Why would you call brash out. He's been the only player that has been playing well throughout the whole series. Why don't you call the offensive players out that haven't produced. Or the defensive players that have made several bad plays. The only line that has played well throughout this whole series has been the brash line, so don't call him out. If you want to see someone fight, the caps got other players that can fight, but as of right now I don't want to see brash in the box for 5 min when he's probably been our best player in this series. His line is the only line really doing anything this series.
I also think our defense has to protect Huet. They need to clear the front of the net out. Also will someone please hit briere. They are giving him way to much respect and room. Put a body on him.

Posted by: Thomas | April 17, 2008 11:40 AM | Report abuse

Where was Jari Kurri from?

Posted by: Hew | April 17, 2008 11:44 AM | Report abuse

Man... I wish we had Chris Clark right now. He'd be as close to Huntsie as we'd need right now. Having him and Brooksie crashing the net would be a beautiful thing.

Posted by: 425 Row B'er | April 17, 2008 11:44 AM | Report abuse

Well, I'll be up in the middle of the night again watching. I really hope whatever changes actually happen come gametime help to bring out the Caps' fighting spirit. That'll make me more proud to be a fan win or lose. But I have faith! Going back to Washington 2-2!!!

Posted by: CapsfaninSlovakia | April 17, 2008 11:44 AM | Report abuse

While I somewhat see you point 2008Stanley, bottom line is, while size and speed and grit help determine skill of a team. Anyone who plays knows that a team with the most competitive players by number, will win out. anaheim is a great example. teams can be afraid to compete, that means not being tentative to do anything including making mistakes.

Posted by: crbdcap | April 17, 2008 11:45 AM | Report abuse

Danny

Do you think it's possible that we get rid of both 37 and 38, and make a trade for a goalie from another team during the offseason?

That's an interesting thought, I just don't see any keepers that are going to be available for assets I'm willing to give up. I'm still preaching what I've preached before the trade deadline, I don't want to pick anything up via trades in which we give up any first rounders or prospects.

As for next season, I still think have a Huet/Kolzig (Olie at a HUGE discount) combo would work well...with Huet starting 50-60 games.

Posted by: Yosh | April 17, 2008 11:45 AM | Report abuse

828, normally id say keep it up brotha! but um the flyers really are rougher, skating faster, and biron has been a wall. o well.

i will be happy if:
someone knocks 48s head off
we forecheck the daylights out
huet comes up big
we come home 2-2

Posted by: Pat | April 17, 2008 11:45 AM | Report abuse

Besides the obvious reasons; I would really like to see us win so we could shove it up Mill(dingle)bury and Mcguire's arses.

Posted by: Hew | April 17, 2008 11:47 AM | Report abuse

Pat - talking about tonight... don't care about any other games - just the one tonight.

Posted by: 828 | April 17, 2008 11:47 AM | Report abuse

"You know how I know your gay?"

You say "Hip, Hip, Huet!"

Posted by: Hew | April 17, 2008 11:50 AM | Report abuse

Seeing Backie & Semin on the same line brings the movie "Blades of Glory" To mind. Can we dress 3 goalies? Put, Olie in let them try to run him. Let him go total "Godzilla" on them get tossed and move on. I guess this would mean not dressing a forward but, I have a feeling this game will be played mostly 4 on 4 or 5 on 4.

Posted by: Pasha | April 17, 2008 11:51 AM | Report abuse

3 Reasons I think Olie should be in net:
First, they have nothing to lose. The series is 2-1 Philly and so if Olie goes in and plays like crap (doubt it), that doesn't mean they're out of the hunt.

Second, Kolzig is bigger and known for protecting his net and team. At this point Huet is acting like a...well, he's playing light and letting Briere knock him down several times per game. It's complete BS. I know the other Caps should be sticking up for him (Donald Brashear) but they're not, and Huet doesn't defend himself. Kolzig would.

Third, Olie hasn't played in a while and is fresh. He has sat and watched the last 3 games against Philly and has been able to see all the stuff that's been going on. That's a plus, that makes him even more ready.

Just a few thoughts.

Posted by: KK | April 17, 2008 11:51 AM | Report abuse

Huet isnt to blame for being down 1 game...
Oh, btw, before I forget, the best we can do is bring the series tied back to the Verizon Center. 2,2,1,1,1 format.

Back to Huet, the Flyers have scored 12 goals, 1 was an empty netter, so 11 on Huet.

Goal 1 - Huet completely screened by Hartnell. Green shouldve been shoving Hartnell out. Huet never saw it, didnt have a chance. Good shot by Prospal.

FAULT - 100% Green

Goal 2 - PP was expiring, the Flyers timed a perfectly executed pass to a streaking Briere. Poti, the last line of defense, played the puck instead of Briere. Briere one on one with Huet made the perfect shot. Huet was in good position, just got beat.

FAULT - 80% Poti 20% Huet

Goal 3 - Poor outlet pass by Morrisonn caused a 3 on two play. Morrisonn also played the wing player instead of the middle forward(Prospal). Green marked the other wing. Prospal recieved a pass and had an easy shot. Prospal doesnt miss from 6 ft.

FAULT - 100% Morrisonn

Goal 4 - PP goal by Briere set up by an non-interference call on Hartnell from impeding Huet's lateral movement. Poti had to try to clear Hartnell and didnt recognize Briere wide open. Great pass, easy shot, no penalty call. Huet had no chance.

FAULT - 80% Refs 20% Poti

Goal 5 - Completely inexcusable lack of defense by a flat footed Schultz. Caught sleeping by Coburn, who made an almost 3 line pass to Umberger. Umberger basically had a penalty shot against Huet. Could Huet have stopped it? Yes. Can you expect him to stop it? No. Should that play ever have developed? Absolutely, positively no F-ing way.

FAULT - 110% Schultz

Goal 6 - Green, recovering from a night out on the town, tries to weave through 2 pinching Flyers. Green gets knocked off his skates and coughs it up to Knuble which sets up a 2 on 1. Knuble shot stopped by Huet but rebound finds Carter's stick, end of story.

FAULT - 90% Green 10% Huet

Goal 7 - Briere wide open on the wing, great pass by Prospal all set up by Laich falling down. I think, I'm not 100% positive, but I think Laich was suppose to follow Briere. Briere is pretty good, that said it would've been nice for Huet to stop that one.

FAULT - 50% Laich 50% Huet

Goal 8 - This one is squarely on the players and Boudreau as they got caught on a slow developing line change. Bad time for a line change and a slow one at that. Hartnell slapshot beats Huet.

FAULT - 50% Boudreau 40% Whoever was slow getting off of the ice 10% Huet

Goal 9 - Jurcina basically give the Flyers a lay-up. It might as well have been teed up the Flyers.

FAULT - 100% Jurcina

Goal 10 - PP goal Briere set up by a fake shot that was a pass to Briere. Erskine bit and left the right side completely exposed. Huet bit too. Too easy. Good play by the Flyers.

FAULT - 50% Erskine 50% Huet

Goal 11 - Penalty shot by Richards set up by a giveaway. Huet is usually money on these, however the Red Sea was parted and Moses, I mean Richards scored a fairly easily. Again, could Huet have stopped it? Yes, Can we expect him to stop it? No.

FAULT - 100% defense

Posted by: JSchon | April 17, 2008 11:55 AM | Report abuse

I propose this: if Jeff want to keep posting here, he'll have to wear a Caps jersey at tonight's game and scream obscenities at Briere in the bathroom.

...
...


hehe jk man :D.



Posted by: mauree | April 17, 2008 11:55 AM | Report abuse

I posted the response about Huet and keeping him for a reasonable contract. I believe the Philly Jeff is off at his BBQ. I have no problem with him, but considering this is a hockey board, it does seems like we know a bit too much about him. :-)

Posted by: Jeff (DC) | April 17, 2008 12:00 PM | Report abuse

@Jschon

Exactly my point - TY

Posted by: Hew | April 17, 2008 12:00 PM | Report abuse

@2008Stanley
You are crazy if you think we can't win with these guys, agree with SuperCaps and Yosh - if you trade these guys they will kill you in 2 years??Talk about idiotic thoughts - Holy Cow!!! Its about experience and chemistry.... (I hate to even use this but I have to.)
Example, what happened to the Pens last year in the playoffs, Ding Ding, you are right, they lost in the first round, but look at them today - they got experience and have come back tougher and better.
You have got to give these guys a chance and understand we will pick up players(pieces that fit) along the way - these guys have a lot of their best years ahead of them and yes, I said "BEST" because I don't think they have peeked yet. Your not a true CAPS fan if you can't see it coming - if you have waited this long for the CAPS to make a Playoff Run, you mark my words, it's going to get better then it is now!!

Posted by: Greenie | April 17, 2008 12:01 PM | Report abuse

Huet's post game interview. (A good laugh)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n_w4MV_LwMw

Posted by: Anonymous | April 17, 2008 12:02 PM | Report abuse

@ geauxcaps

Didn't you hear? Failed clears was added to the books with the latest "Avery Rule" addendum.

Posted by: Husky Hockey | April 17, 2008 12:02 PM | Report abuse

@Yosh

Where are all these rebounds you talk about?

Posted by: JSchon | April 17, 2008 12:03 PM | Report abuse

I wish people would actually pay attention and comment truthfully or just say that they have a man crush on Kolzig... Yosh...

I'm joking... btw

Posted by: JSchon | April 17, 2008 12:06 PM | Report abuse

So couple of thoughts....

First, I am the only one who thinks that BB made the wrong change on the 1st line? While I like having Feds up there, a) he is older and I wonder about his ability to keep up all night with the line that dominates in playing time and b) I think that what the Caps really need on that like is someone who can take up the role Clark filled when he played with OV. I would therefore move Kozlov down and either Bradley or Laich up so that we have someone on the first line who will win the races for pucks that get dumped in and thenbang and crash in the corners to get possession. That might give OV some more room to work..

As for Goalie, I think it is a bit off to blame Huet, no he has not played as well as he should, but he also has not played particulary poorley either. I do think we shoudl go with Ollie tonight though purely becuase of his size. You put him in and it forces PHILLY to change THEIR game becauase they won't be able to push our goalie around as much and get the same benefits they have been getting by putting people in front of the net.

Just my two cents - thoughts???

Posted by: dyoungdc | April 17, 2008 12:07 PM | Report abuse

I do not advocate violence, and I prefer the flowing game of hockey versus the clutching and grabbing, but I really believe that if the Caps don't lay someone out within the first 30 seconds and set the tone for the game EARLY the boys won't be able to do it.

Posted by: Leeguru | April 17, 2008 12:10 PM | Report abuse

Folks, Johnson is under contract for next season for just under $1 million. No one is going to trade for him. He's going to be the backup, period.

Posted by: jammand | April 17, 2008 12:10 PM | Report abuse

The Caps are playing as if they have no will to impose on the Flyers - they realize they have played well to get here but really, they have to FIGHT to get a little of that swagger back.
The Flyers, I believe, have a sense of complacence all of a sudden: "hey, the Caps are laying down when we hit them and can't answer the bell here - it doesnt matter what they do, even strength or PP, we're going to stop them".
Holy crap that would just piss me off if I was a Cap. Particularly Briere - I have never seen such a smug pr--k, other than maybe Spezza.
It's gotta be all out war tonight -so they can return to DC and turn the tide. They're too good to let the FLyers have their way with them.

Posted by: Shaggy | April 17, 2008 12:11 PM | Report abuse

I think people need to realize that just because a goal isn't necessarily Huet's fault, it doesn't mean they are unstoppable. In the playoffs, the goalie has got to step up. While we may not be able to say all the goals are soft, there are some that a goalie who is going to take us past the first round of the playoffs should stop.

A goalie needs to make saves on tough shots, and he needs to steal a game or two.

Posted by: Angela | April 17, 2008 12:13 PM | Report abuse

@JSchon

But the whole thing about a hot playoff goalie is that he makes numerous saves that he can't reasonably be expected to make. A hot playoff goalie bails out his defense when they make stupid mistakes. And, for the last 11 regular season games, Huet was essentially that hot playoff goalie -- he was making numerous saves, many on breakaways caused by defensive breakdowns. He was making saves that no one could reasonably expect of him or any goalie. In the playoffs, he hasn't been the same goalie. He hasn't really let in any soft goals (maybe one), but he hasn't been making the spectacular game/momentum changing saves. The Huet from the last 11 regular season games makes saves on half the goals you listed.

I'm not an Olie lover -- I'm glad they brought Huet in -- it obviously worked out. But one thing Kolzig is is a competitor, and his pride has been seriously wounded by the events of the last two months. Never underestimate the power of a chance to prove people wrong for a competitor. If given the chance, he will be fired up beyond belief. The caps need a spark, and, in the playoffs, a goalie is that spark. Also remember that this is a team of destiny, and what better way for the fairytale to continue than to have the old warhorse, who has (in his mind) been dismissed and disrespected, to come back and save the day.

Posted by: Hook | April 17, 2008 12:18 PM | Report abuse

@ JSchon

Great breakdown & analysis

Thanks

Posted by: red dragon | April 17, 2008 12:18 PM | Report abuse

@Angela
Well said. And at this point, who is more likely to steal agame for us? Olie's last 2 starts were 6-3 and 5-0 losses...I still think our fortunes are better with Cristo. He does need to step up, and he and the Caps know he is their best chance.

Posted by: Shaggy | April 17, 2008 12:19 PM | Report abuse

Yeah but to be fair, that 5-0 loss was hardly Olie's fault. The team forgot there was a game that day.

Posted by: honed | April 17, 2008 12:23 PM | Report abuse

King Huet

So you think we shold leave the worst goalie out of the 16 in the playoffs in goal? And that will help how?

Hew

So Huet could not see the penalty shot last game? Perhaps he should open his eyes or wear his contacts this game. He has been letting in soft goals every single game, he needs to step up and make the great saves you need to make in the playoffs, but I really don't believe he has that in him. He has shown consistantly that he cannot play at that level.

Posted by: Bob | April 17, 2008 12:29 PM | Report abuse

If Huet gets shelled tonight, maybe BB could put Olie in for mop up duty. Then he could follow the example below to take care of Danielle B. and the other Cryers...

Jamie McLennan slashes Johan Franzen (Flames vs. Red Wings '07 playoffs):

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Be5TWS4OFrc

Posted by: MetalCapsFan | April 17, 2008 12:30 PM | Report abuse

@Angela

I'm assuming I'm one of these people you're talking about.

I almost agree with you, however, I dont.

No goalie could have prevented:
G 1
G 4

No goalie would be expected to stop:
G 3
G 5
G 6
G 9

50/50 shot at stopping:
G 2
G 7
G 8
G 10
G 11

My point is that Huet, or any goalie for that matter, shouldnt have to face so many odd man rushes or opposing played skating through him or opposing players asses in his face. The defense has played like a bunch of one legged 7th graders, no offense to the 7th graders in here.

If you eliminate the complete blunders by the defense we're playing an OT session in game 3.

Posted by: JSchon | April 17, 2008 12:31 PM | Report abuse

Again, I think Huet has been solid. Most of the play has been in his end - defense has missed assignments; not cleared the crease-rebounds; and have been especially poor about clearing the puck out of the zone.

Posted by: Hew | April 17, 2008 12:32 PM | Report abuse

Huet should play tonight, but if the Caps lose, I think it's just fair and just to let Olie play on saturday in front of the home crowd. It might be his last game as a Cap. It would be a fitting end to a remarkable career and an amazing season!

Posted by: wanggo | April 17, 2008 12:34 PM | Report abuse

@Shaggy

Thanks!

I agree that Olie's last 2 starts were not great. I don't know who I would start the more I think about it. All I know is that the entire TEAM needs to play better...from the forwards, to the defense, to the goalie. Sometimes a goalie switch can help light a fire under a team, sometimes it's a lost cause.

I do know that Huet needs to bring his "A" game tonight, and steal us a game if he has to. Maybe a Caps fan attending the game with the CRC needs to hold a sign for Huet saying "Great Playoffs + Potential UFA = Big Payday."

Speaking of Huet, I will say a couple weeks ago at Verizon, this guy got hit in the head by a puck during warmups...Huet skated over, pointed at him and threw a puck. That was nice. Yeah, nice doesn't win games, but I just thought I'd share that.

Posted by: Angela | April 17, 2008 12:34 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: AP | April 17, 2008 12:35 PM | Report abuse

Hope everyone has their rally CAPS on today bc boy do we need this on. I will be at Front Page bc I am a superstitious idiot and I feel as if they played their best when I was there.

Aside from that, lets keep the negativity to a min and encouragement to an all time high. A 2-2 split is what we are looking for and frankly I believe that is where we are gonna be. Coming home for a Saturday game tied 2-2 would be great for how we have played. Hopefully Huet can steal one for us tonight and the Offense gets its act together. I am looking forward to seeing a very desperate Caps team bc going down 3-1 is like trying to play russian roulette with 4 bullets, chances are your dead.

Hope everyone has a good day and lets keep our game faces on.

JSchon, we need the best prayer we've had to date for tonights game. Give a good one Brother Schon for it is needed.

Posted by: Roger # 94 | April 17, 2008 12:35 PM | Report abuse

@Bob

Penalty Shot: Huet got beat by a most professional move. I would argue most goalies don't stop that unless they get lucky.

Posted by: Hew | April 17, 2008 12:36 PM | Report abuse

@Leeguru
Have a little faith - not like you to post a statement like that. If they don't they don't deserve to win, I think they know what they have to do to win, its just if they can actually execute.
@JSchon - I usually agree 100%, but I must say that Huet has not come up big and I was expecting better. I have been down on our "D" as much as anyone, but these guys are going to make mistakes and he has to start standing on his head to make those huge saves - I expect him to be better tonight then the first 3 games, but I feel like there were 5 goals he should have stopped....
#3 Prospal - I think he didn't take away the near post - bad positioning on above average shooter
#5 Umberger - not a great goal - 9.9 times out of 10 he makes that save or gets a piece of the puck.
#6 Carter - should not have been a rebound, he normally controls those shots, seems a bit tentative to me.
#7 Brier goal, should have had that one also - looked slower than normal or scrambled.
#10 - PS by Richards, he normally makes that save - my thought is that the pressure is getting to him.
I always love your posts, I just think the Flyers are in his head and he is not handling it well! I agree with your percentages, but on 20% fault or less he must save those shots - he has to be responsible for his part.

Posted by: Greenie | April 17, 2008 12:38 PM | Report abuse

Bob, Are you a woman? You sure bi+ch a lot.

Posted by: Broseph | April 17, 2008 12:38 PM | Report abuse

Let's go Caps!!

Posted by: jmu_capsgirl | April 17, 2008 12:39 PM | Report abuse

Broseph

That's good man, I was wondering the same thing! He/she does seem to be quite unhappy about a plethera of things in life or is just a short fused psycho ready to snap!:o

Posted by: HaHaHa!!! | April 17, 2008 12:41 PM | Report abuse

I guess Huet on the Caps is the only one that "should" do better. Makes plenty of sense. Biron is the 2nd worst goalie in the league right now (in save %). Flyers should yank him.

Posted by: Broseph | April 17, 2008 12:41 PM | Report abuse

I'm sorry, but Olie should be put in, in order to maybe provide a spark, don't get me wrong, I think Huet has done a fine job, and I am by no means ans Olie supporter, but at this point, you have to at least try everything you can.

Posted by: R. | April 17, 2008 12:42 PM | Report abuse

Bob, you said that Huet "has shown consistantly that he cannot play at that level" (that level = great saves, etc)?

I'd agree his play has been subpar the last 3 games. But I believe that is mostly attributed to his teammates.

For the Caps in the regular season he saved over 93% of the shots he faced.

In his previous playoff series (which was a loss), he saved 93% of the shots he faced.

Compare that to Kolzig's career save % which, rounded up, is 93% as well.

So, the question is...are the 3 games with a low save % for Huet his true colors, or is it maybe the fact he is getting limited support from his teammates?

Posted by: Jeff (DC) | April 17, 2008 12:42 PM | Report abuse

Is is going to be great after the Caps win tonight!

Go Caps!

Posted by: MikeR | April 17, 2008 12:43 PM | Report abuse

Why don't we put Brashear out on the ice for the first shift with specific instructions to send the first person who touches Huet/Olie to the hospital? It's not our style, but we're playing too much of the nice guy role at the moment. We need to send a message that we're not going to get punked around.

Posted by: The Burglar | April 17, 2008 12:44 PM | Report abuse

Ovechkin has not bee playing that well in this series. Okay, he got the game winner in game one and Huet got the win. But, since then, he has been a joke.

Bench Ovechkin! That makes sense too.

Posted by: Broseph | April 17, 2008 12:47 PM | Report abuse

Because then Brash would be gone, and he has been one of the few producers. Don't disagree with the concept -- maybe sacrifice Erskine.

Posted by: Hook | April 17, 2008 12:47 PM | Report abuse

@Bob,

First you need to apologize that you called Huet a French dog, I understand, it was in the heat of the arguing, but you need to apologize. No matter how much you love Kolzig, you should NOT say such thing about Washington Capitals goalie.

Unless you're flyers fan.

Posted by: King Huet | April 17, 2008 12:54 PM | Report abuse

Bob's just an old grumpy curmudgeon!

Posted by: FrenchDog | April 17, 2008 12:58 PM | Report abuse

Green's fight on hockeyfights.com if you were the beneficiary of Comcast's blackout of the first two minutes of periond 3/ game 3.

I understand that Upshall basically made a run at Morrisonn (so what else is new?) and suppose Green had enough of the horseplay - or whatever they call it in Philly. It was good to see Laich dump Timonen into the net too. But the constant goalie interferences is really what gets me. In game one, Huet had his legs cut out from under him, then Dani Breeyare wanting to make love in the crease in game 3. Looked like both times the ref was yelling at him - "don't do that again or I'll have to make a call that I don't want to make" -- yeah, to his mother!

Brooks, on the other hand, blew a kiss to Biron and ended up in the box. Green gets a slashing and fighting major for Upshall taking down Morrisonn - I just didn't think that justice was THAT BLIND!

Writing this off as "well, that's the way Philly has always played" doesn't make it right. Until the refs "kick it up a notch" , that's the way they will continue.

Posted by: dogdaze | April 17, 2008 12:58 PM | Report abuse

Anyone remember when the CAPS had Acton,Poulin, Toochet

Posted by: fat jack | April 17, 2008 12:58 PM | Report abuse

I guess I'll just throw my 2 cents in. This series (for that matter anyone who the caps might have played against) is very tough for a team like the Caps. The entire blue line, with maybe the exception of Poti, is new to the playoffs and are really young. This goes for some of the forwards as well. I hate to say this but the situation the Caps are in is very similar to what the Pens were going through last year when they got dominated by the Sens in the first round, a very veteran team with lots of playoff experience. With another year under their belt, everyone knows how that series turned out this year. I think the line changes might help improve the scoring a bit but there is nothing BB can do about the defense. The kids just have to go out, try not to be overwhelmed by the situation and play the best that they can. Unfortunately, in the playoffs, the growing pains usually cost the inexperienced teams goals. I'm not saying the Caps dont have a chance to win this series, but it is the reality of the situation right now.

Having said that, I expect the caps to come out with more determination this game (can you really come out with less?) and hopefully be tied 2-2 coming back to DC.

Posted by: Moose33 | April 17, 2008 1:01 PM | Report abuse

Well said Greenie. I finally purchased season tickets this year because I don't want to miss games because the bandwagon fans (who are failing us now) will come to watch. Our youngsters our nervous. Can you blame them? I have said in many postings, this is just the beginning of a good thing. I believe the Caps can get this turned around, I really do. They need to do it the way BB said it has to be done. Dump it in, dig it out of the corners and crash the net. In our zone, we need to clear the crease. I think the next Flyer that runs over Huet should be grabbed and thrown back to the ice like a rag doll. The ones crashing are small guys anyway and one of them might try to go to blows, or in Briere's case, spear somebody. Back to our Caps...Everyone needs to shoot! Huet settled down after the 1st last game, and in game 2. If we get an early goal, hopefully two, the Flyers fans will start eating their team alive. Let's go Caps.

Posted by: fanohock1 | April 17, 2008 1:05 PM | Report abuse

Boudreau's quote: We play by the rules

should change it to:

WE PLAY BY THEIR RULES


Not likely though

Posted by: dogdaze | April 17, 2008 1:07 PM | Report abuse

I am the first to admit that Nicky has not had a great playoff series so far. And he did score on our net against the Pens. But remember these three things.

1. Many were not convinced that Nicky could play as a front line Center his first year in NHL. He did it (and developed great chemistry with the future MVP).

2. Where would the Caps be right now if Nicky had not scored those clutch goals in the Atlanta game?

3. Can you even imagine how things might have been different if Nicky had not scored the OT goal in that faithful Thanksgiving weekend game against the Flyers?

I am not saying those things should necessarily outweigh how his game has been so far in this series. I am just saying that he is young, he is inexperienced, but the promise and potential he has shown this year cannot be forgotten.

I also think Nick (and the rest of this team) has some more clutch left. I predict a big game from Nick and Semin tonight.

Posted by: Kim | April 17, 2008 1:09 PM | Report abuse

Huet + Biron = 2 losers

Caps & Devils out of the playoffs in the first round. I never said it was not a good shot, I just said you need to stop good shots, in fact you need to stop great shots to win in the playoffs and so far Huet has not stopped a good shot. Time to step up or sit down. His playoff record is what got him traded. But hey after 2 more games his wife can head back to Canada and both will be happy. No apology will be coming, unless he stops choking.

Posted by: Bob | April 17, 2008 1:12 PM | Report abuse

@Moose33 I actually used the same example earlier. Hate to compare the CAPS to the PENS but they are in the same situation the PENS were last year. Youth + no playoff experience = baby steps, baby steps, baby steps....Never said they can't win this series, never once crossed my mind, it's called learning and living - and seeing what your made of. Experience is half the battle, if you don't have it, then what have we all really got??? Lucky if you win the cup without experience or traded to the right team....!

Posted by: Greenie | April 17, 2008 1:12 PM | Report abuse

Greenie, because I have mad several statements today that could be objectionable, which one did you single out? I don't want to dissappoint my blog pals!

Posted by: Leeguru | April 17, 2008 1:14 PM | Report abuse

Bandwagon got a "flat"??

Posted by: cc | April 17, 2008 1:14 PM | Report abuse

To those who think people are solely blaming Huet, I don't think that is the case. But, the goalie is the "Last Line of Defense." Much like in football, where it's rare that a team wins despite their quarterback (those rare teams including Trent Dilfer and the Ravens), a hockey series rests in the end on the play of a goalie. Is he playing his best hockey, really shutting the door? Is he covering up for defense miscues as much as he can?

A good example of a team excelling because of their goalie's phenominal play is Nashville, who looked all but dead in the water. A good example of a team faltering because of a goalie not stepping up is New Jersey and Mr. 3 Stanley Cup's Martin Brodeur, who is not playing as well as he can.

In the playoffs, if one aspect of your game is struggling, others need to pick it up. For example, if the forwards are struggling, the defense needs to try to chip in on offense. If the defense is struggling, the goalie needs to pick up their slack as much as he can. If the goalie is struggling, the offense needs to pick up their game and score more.

Again, I'm not saying Huet has been bad, I just think like everyone else he needs to step it up and steal a game for the Caps. If any single player can steal a game, it's the goalie (of course someone needs to score at least 1 goal). These past three games really are TEAM losses.

Posted by: Angela | April 17, 2008 1:14 PM | Report abuse

Huet(not a loser) + Biron + Bob = 2 losers

Take a guess on who isnt the loser party people.

Posted by: JSchon | April 17, 2008 1:15 PM | Report abuse

For all the naysayers giving up on the Caps, why even be a "fan" of a team if you are quitting on them down just 2-1 in a playoff series? I understand all the baggage (I am a Caps fan since 1980), but come on! I think the odds are against the Caps tonight, but I still think they have a 35-40% chance of stealing a road win. And, nevertheless, let them play. If they lose the series we evaluate the first playoff experience for most of the team. Until then, Go Caps!!

Posted by: Eric in Laurel | April 17, 2008 1:17 PM | Report abuse

@Leeguru......
"but I really believe that if the Caps don't lay someone out within the first 30 seconds and set the tone for the game EARLY the boys won't be able to do it."

Posted by: Greenie | April 17, 2008 1:18 PM | Report abuse

Amending the last line of my last post at 1:14, I meant the last TWO losses. Wow, they have played so bad as a team I have miscounted the losses...I thought it was more! :o

Posted by: Angela | April 17, 2008 1:18 PM | Report abuse

As many Kolzig bashers have previously pointed out if youre in goal and a goal is scored... ITS YOUR FAULT... why should we have a double standard?

But really i dont care who's in, being a goalie on the Caps means that you're going to be hung out to dry several times a game.
LETS just win!

Posted by: MetalCap | April 17, 2008 1:18 PM | Report abuse

Greenie, agreed. Didnt see your earlier post but that's exactly what the Caps situation reminds me of. The team has a bright future and any playoff experience they can get this year will be huge next year. That's why I hope they get past the Flyer for some more "learning on the job".

Posted by: Moose33 | April 17, 2008 1:19 PM | Report abuse

NHL commercial with the cliche coach...

In Hockey, its all about preventive maintenance, you take care of something it takes care of you. Lets say you dont change your oil, what happens? Your car breaks down. Well, if you dont take care of your goalie, the whole team breaks down. Lets say you rotate your tires, what happens? Your tires wear out prematurely, so if you dont rotate your tires, goals will be scored against you (puzzled look on face). So what I'm trying to say is if you change your oil and rotate your tires, you'll win more games than you'll lose.

OK, Lets play some hockey...

Posted by: JSchon | April 17, 2008 1:27 PM | Report abuse

If you've been following the Devils/Rangers series as well as the Caps, the Rangers are constantly running into and over Brodeur. Last night he was run over by our favorite - Jagr - and they called Marty for diving! Devils fans are making the same complaints about the officiating as are Caps fans here and I would not be surprised if that pattern is also being repeated in other playoff series that I am not following as closely.

That said, it seems that if the NHL wants to become more a game of "skill" as pronounced by Bettman and less a game of thugs (i.e. "Broad Street Bullies") the refs have to get more involved and establish the parameters. Otherwise, those teams that "play by the Rules" (quote from Caps coach Boudreau) or "stay classy" like the Devils will find an early out of the playoffs....

Nevertheless, I'm still hoping both the Caps tonight and the Devils tomorrow can pull it off. For the Devils, it is not so much lack of experience as lack of the great defensemen they had in their prior Cup runs and lack of great scorers; in my opinion, the Caps need experience, which they're getting, and a much stronger defense, which I hope they'll get in the offseason.

In any event, as a long-time season ticket holder, I am so happy for the season this team has given us: optimism for the first time in so many years and a hint of what the future will bring - a team that is built to go to the playoffs annually, to go deep, and to win the Cup at some time in the not-too-distant future.

LET'S GO CAPS - I'M SO PROUD TO BE A FAN!

Posted by: DevilsCapsGal | April 17, 2008 1:29 PM | Report abuse

Anyone know what the pratice schedule for this weekend (Fri/Sat) looks like? It is not on the Caps website.

I had thought it would be good to have a fan presence to support the team upon their return on Friday (either way). However, may be moot point for me since my older son has two tests Friday (what teacher does that the first Friday of a grading period?) I suspect the Friday/Saturday practice schedule may also depend on how things go tonight.

Posted by: Kim | April 17, 2008 1:31 PM | Report abuse

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DUMP AND CHASE!!!!
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Posted by: LIVINIT | April 17, 2008 1:32 PM | Report abuse

For Gods sake PLEASE>>>>>>

Posted by: LIVINIT | April 17, 2008 1:34 PM | Report abuse

Agree with those who say that Huet is not having a strong series -- the numbers say that, too. But the numbers also show our Caps being outshot 2-1 in the last two games. Biron didn't even have to make 20 saves the other night.

So yes, a hot goalie can steal a game. But team defense wins a play-off series. We need to be more physical on both ends of the ice.

It doesn't matter if it's Huet or Kolzig in goal if all the Flyers need is a pylon in theirs.

Posted by: SinBin | April 17, 2008 1:39 PM | Report abuse

HAHAHA Federov on your first line with Alex Ovechkikin

The end is coming. .....

Sorry bunch of loosers

Posted by: The MAN | April 17, 2008 1:43 PM | Report abuse

Also would like to know the practice schedule as if they are practicing tomorrow, I think I'm coming down with something and might have to skip work...

Tarik, little help? Or is it totally going to depend on how we do tonight?

Posted by: SLM | April 17, 2008 1:43 PM | Report abuse

DUMP AND CHASE!!!

Posted by: Anonymous | April 17, 2008 1:44 PM | Report abuse

If I rememberd my BB quote correctly,he said he was playing the hot hand (Huet)...can anyone say Huet is hot at this point after the 3 games...Oliie was playing fairly well, except for the Hawks game and no one played well there. So useing BB's quote..time for a change..If they win you have a new hot goalie, if not then Huet had a rest and see if he comes back, if not see ya next year with a lot more experiened team and some stronger guys on Defense or at least someone who will not let our goalie be roughed up, frankly there is no excuse for that at any point in the season.

Posted by: Rich C | April 17, 2008 1:45 PM | Report abuse

@ Kim

The schedule is on the site but in another location, under News then Caps Today:

http://capitals.nhl.com/team/app/?service=page&page=NHLPage&id=20365

Posted by: BMT | April 17, 2008 1:46 PM | Report abuse

@SLM-- I'd bet practice is going to be a game time decision. If they even have it. I think if they win, it'll be optional. If they lose, they'll have some sort of practice.

Posted by: Go Skins Go | April 17, 2008 1:46 PM | Report abuse

LoL LOL LOL LOL

Washington Capitals = The Joke of the 2008 NHL PLAYOFFS

Semin, Kozlov, Ovechki, Federov.

A lot of them come from USA and Canada??? no

you suck Huet

Posted by: LOL | April 17, 2008 1:48 PM | Report abuse

They're handing out copies of Wise's column at the door of the Wachovia Center:

http://www.the700level.com/2008/04/flyers-gets-wis.html

Posted by: Ben from Washington | April 17, 2008 1:57 PM | Report abuse

@LOL --- ummm the Ottawa Senators beg to differ with you.

Posted by: Go Skins Go | April 17, 2008 1:58 PM | Report abuse

The advantage in shots on goal is/can be significant, but the quality of the scoring chances has been the issue here. Huet has been overmatched by odd man rushes and shots that goalies have at best a 50% chance of stopping - I think we'd all agree on that.
But he's got to get us out of the first period with no goals allowed, for us to get back in this series. If Philly scores first again and opens another 2 goal lead, which I dont think will happen, it'll be a long night.
Caps (or any team for that matter) are best keeping it to the outside. When the Flyers start to setup shop down low, I think they have to get hit.

Posted by: Shaggy | April 17, 2008 1:58 PM | Report abuse

They're handing out copies of Wise's column at the door of the Wachovia Center:

http://www.the700level.com/2008/04/flyers-gets-wis.html

They're assuming Flyers fans can read words of more than one syllable?

Posted by: DevilsCapsGal | April 17, 2008 2:00 PM | Report abuse

I have a terrible feeling that Biron is going to be on fire tonight :(

Posted by: Salmon | April 17, 2008 2:01 PM | Report abuse

I'm only speaking for myself, but I don't think most of the Capitals fans on this board mind respectful, insightful comments from fans of opposing teams.

However, when the opposition's fans either try to take over the board or overrun it with juvenile comments, then we get irked.

(Speaking of opposing fans: Considering the verbal abuse I got for wearing an Ovechkin shirt at the HSBC Center in Buffalo earlier this year, I've longed to go onto a Sabres board and ask how their golf schedule looks. But I'll behave.)

Posted by: Caps fan in TN | April 17, 2008 2:04 PM | Report abuse

Why does anyone care who posts or what gets posted here? This is a Washington Post blog, open to the public for comment (although some people think it is a message board). Either way, it is a public forum, and unless someone violates the guidelines set forth by the Post, they can come here and make negative comments if they so choose.

If you guys can't handle a couple of Flyers fans making 3rd-grade comments on the message boards (alongside the Philly fans who actually want to talk about hockey), you're even softer than the Caps have been lately. Can't you just ignore their comments and continue with a semi-intelligent hockey conversation? Every time you reply, you are giving them what they want.

Show some pride in the Caps and their fans!!

Posted by: Jill | April 17, 2008 2:15 PM | Report abuse

You knuckleheads are forgetting that the Caps are about a year ahead of schedule in terms of getting to the playoffs. Now I'm not saying that they should just be happy to be there, but a lot of those guys have zero playoff experience and now they're getting it. Plus the Caps have the offseason to load up on what they need and prime themselves for a great 08-09 season (and playoff run).

Posted by: Anon | April 17, 2008 2:27 PM | Report abuse

What we (the C-A-P-S! CAPS! CAPS! CAPS!)

Need right now is me and my two brothers,
"...We all know how to play hockey. Just play it smart.
- Get out there and stick 'em! - F*@k 'em!
- Let's go! - Come on!
- Come on! - Let's go, now.
- We need this win. We've a lot of losses... - Yeah!

That's what we're here for, guys. To win.
Play heads-up out there. Let's be smart. We're better than any club if we try...

Start it from the friggin' NATIONAL ANTHEM!!!! I'm TRYIN' TO LISTEN TO THE )*(^(^&%^&%A SONG!!!

Posted by: Steve Hanson | April 17, 2008 2:28 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: Anonymous | April 17, 2008 2:30 PM | Report abuse

I have a terrible feeling that Biron's pants are going to be on fire tonight

People, Caps will win tonight. It's a matter of peaking at the right moment, and the right moment is tonight.

Remember Canes? They where ahead of Caps all the time and ended up out of playoffs.

BECAUSE THEY PEAKED EARLY.

So are the Flyers, they already peaked. Biron is not a good goalie. He had one game because his wife was due, that's it.

Fleyrs bag of tricks is empty, they have nothing new to offer. Running Huet? He is prepared, the team is prepared, and the refs are prepared. These series have been watched closely by all hockey world, there's no way refs will allow liberties again against Huet.

Do you think Ovie is not going to do anything tonight?

HE WILL OWN F***KING FLYERS TONIGHT!

Go, Caps!

Posted by: King Huet | April 17, 2008 2:36 PM | Report abuse

@ cc
The bandwagon has wooden wheels = no flats

I think when it hit the bump a bunch of people fell out. Others got jolted around and are now wondering about the structural integrity of the wagon and whether they should bail out before it collapses under their arses.

When we win tonight those same jolted unsure people on-board will be the ones throwing tomatoes out at the people who fell out who are trying to catch up with the wagon again.

Hopefully our team handles the emotions of a close series better than their fans!
:)

Posted by: austinsteve | April 17, 2008 2:38 PM | Report abuse

Saw this on the 700 level blog, saw some of our regulars on there too, nice to see the dialogue is open. But this is pretty funny from a Flyers fan, lets you see inside the mind of the enemy, and sort of makes me appreciate Jeff (not the other Philly punks who jump in and out sometimes though)
----------------------------------------
I don't like the way these Caps fans are rolling over and conceding the series. It's kinda scaring me, like a reverse jinx.

They actually seem like pleasant, level-headed people. I think I prefer the mouthy, incoherent Penguins fans.

Posted by: Walklett | Thursday, April 17, 2008 at 02:20 PM

Posted by: AP | April 17, 2008 2:44 PM | Report abuse

Quote:
those teams that "play by the Rules" (quote from Caps coach Boudreau) or "stay classy" like the Devils will find an early out of the playoffs....

Seriously DevisCapsGal, you can't possibly believe that your two(?!?) teams are the very symbol of sportsmanship and their foes are ruining the game?? Your "other" team won 3 Cups playing physical playoff hockey JUST LIKE THIS. Just the fact that Dale Hunter used to play here should be enough to keep any Caps fan from complaining about cheap shots! Playoff hockey is brutal, the team that dominates physically wins, always. Sorry, but teams aren't going to stand around and watch Ovechkin skate, and stay clear of the crease so Huet can see the shot really well. Mike Wise's tired old retread of the horrible Flyers and their horrible fans in his column yesterday was just plain intellectually dishonest, but I can see many have bought the hype. Dungeon of Doom? Arena of Anger? Flyers fans don't have jobs? Hilarious stuff, trust me we all laugh this garbage off for what it is.

Fortunately there are alot of posters here who DO get it - who said HIT BRIERE and HIT HARTNELL and HIT EVERYBODY ELSE? Well, that guy was right on the money. And so was everybody else who called it what it is. Those are probably the same people that remember the Patrick Divison wars and the great Flyers Caps rivalry that used to be. Not the Ovechkinites, the REAL Cap fans, like the guy wearing the Al Iafrate jersey and his wife I had a beer and some hockey talk with at Tuesday's game. Can't wait for tonight.

Posted by: sarsippius | April 17, 2008 2:45 PM | Report abuse

We are not going to win tonight. The MAN and his DUNGEEN is right. The Caps just can't compete with the all mighty flyers.

Semin and Backstrom will not have big nights and Alex should just turn in his skates. He won't be having a multiple goal night tonight. No Chance.

The flyers will be vengeful they will. The Caps just don't have it in them.

Posted by: 828 | April 17, 2008 2:45 PM | Report abuse

I spoke with the Pope today. He guaranteed a Caps win. We should be fine tonight!

Posted by: fansince74 | April 17, 2008 2:46 PM | Report abuse

@ Shaggy

Good point. I think shots on goals can be important, but it's the quality of those shots that is most important. Goalies will tell you that they can face 10 shots from the perimeter, and they can stop those all day. Its the close range shots or the shots resulting from odd man rushes that are tough.

Posted by: Angela | April 17, 2008 2:48 PM | Report abuse

Tarik, can you tell Mike Wise to never write again? He seriously paints a bad picture of DC as a bunch of whiners and complainers.

Posted by: AP | April 17, 2008 2:50 PM | Report abuse

How long until the team realizes the majority of their goals game from aggressive forchecking behind the net and having traffic in fronts. Bruce has been telling them, I think they're ready to listen. Lets even it up boys.

Argh, I hate being out of the office during playoff time. It makes it impossible to keep up with everyones comments.

Posted by: Sombrero Guy | April 17, 2008 2:50 PM | Report abuse

It's funny...how 3 weeks ago Huet was the saviour, and NOW, people are pushing him out quicker than, well, Olie...you people have no idea what a goalie change can do for a team that's struggling. It's not so much a knock on Huet, it's something that should be done to shake the team up...before it's too late. Olie SHOULD start tonite, and, if he lays an egg, at least maybe he'll show Huet how NOT to get pushed around in the crease.

Posted by: #37 | April 17, 2008 2:52 PM | Report abuse

Steve Hanson -

Thanks for the good laugh. And tell your brothers I don't want none of that stinking rootbeer! :)

Posted by: BearsWoooo | April 17, 2008 2:52 PM | Report abuse

"Argh, I hate being out of the office during playoff time. It makes it impossible to keep up with everyones comments."
omg that made me laugh out loud. It's certainly the only reason I come to the office . . .

Posted by: honed | April 17, 2008 2:53 PM | Report abuse

If we win tonight, I promise my brothers and I will leave our toys in the hotel room!

Posted by: Steve Hanson | April 17, 2008 2:55 PM | Report abuse

I think that Wise article was written with some tongue-in-cheek humor and people are reading it and not getting it.

Posted by: about that wise article | April 17, 2008 2:56 PM | Report abuse

Just got online for the first time today. Scrolled through what jSchon would call mindless banter (wink) and the go to this gem:

HAHAHA Federov on your first line with Alex Ovechkikin
The end is coming. .....
Sorry bunch of loosers

Posted by: The MAN | April 17, 2008 1:43 PM

Apparently we're apologetic for being too loose. If the Flyers win, I'm still 30 to 40 IQ points ahead of this boob, and that puts what's important into a little more perspective. You know, things like literacy.

I'm looking forward to tonight. I'm looking at it the same way i did at the beginning of the season: I just love the game, and watching my team in the post for a little while is just gravy. Hang in their boys and enjoy your time in the playoffs. First times are generally awkward, over-emotional and painfully remembered. (some lucky few get it all).

Lets go CAPS!!

Posted by: oo7 | April 17, 2008 2:57 PM | Report abuse

Steve Hanson
If we win tonight "I'll buy you a soda after the game"...

Posted by: BearsWoooo | April 17, 2008 2:58 PM | Report abuse

I was on my way to a practice, so I missed the leg to leg trip that Flyers fans are complaining about. Did Ovechkin dive, or was it a legit penalty. I honestly can't recall him ever diving, and that call in the Boston game in March was just terrible.

Posted by: Sombrero Guy | April 17, 2008 2:58 PM | Report abuse

@Sombrero

It depends who you ask. I thought it was a penalty, but I also thought he was being a little bit dramatic too. Not a Cindy Crosby type dive, but it definately, to me, was an embellishment.

Posted by: Angela | April 17, 2008 2:59 PM | Report abuse

I sure hope jmu grrl and random hot guy have already left for Philly. rush hour traffic may be especially hard to deal with given all those beers they are gonna be sharing on the way up

Posted by: Anonymous | April 17, 2008 3:00 PM | Report abuse

GO Caps!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Posted by: Greenie | April 17, 2008 3:03 PM | Report abuse

Dear Hockey Gods,

Please listen.
I apologize, I didn't do my prayer before game 3 and we got screwed by you, I hurt my back and everythign went downhill.

Not tonight. I ask you to help us to minimize turnovers and giveaways, that's where we lost game 3, I ask you to put the pucks flat on ice when we shoot 'em and bounce them our way, not flyers way, dear Gods. Please don't sneeze when we are in their zone as well and we'll take care of everything else.

I know I am not playing tonight, but my buddies are. They will play with total disrespect to their bodies, they will block the pucks, they will sacrifice for the team tonight.

We're not asking you too much, like taking care of that annoying punk Briere, we'll relieve you from that, he'll be taken care of. We'll kill 'em dead tonight.

Just help us stay focused, listen to BB, and send those lucky bounces our way, not flyers way.

In Hockey Gods we trust.

Your humbliest servant,

Papa Panzer Schultz

Posted by: Papa Schultz | April 17, 2008 3:03 PM | Report abuse

OTH, Shaggy, I like this...

Posted by: AP | April 17, 2008 3:06 PM | Report abuse

I didn't miss the prayer did I?

Damn meeting...

Bring on the Flyers...I will concede nothing until the final hit is thrown, final shot taken, final goal scored, final buzzer goes off and when Briere give congrats to OV with his limp handshake.


2-2 coming back to the Phone Booth where we will be rockin!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Posted by: Roger # 94 | April 17, 2008 3:06 PM | Report abuse

We just need to bi+ch slap some Flyers tonight and they'll go whimpering in to the corner. That's what we did game 1, period 3.

Posted by: kenwood | April 17, 2008 3:08 PM | Report abuse

O' Pontiff of the Puck, your blessings have given us hockey in April, for that we thank you. We have looked down but not out, we have looked confused but we are not lost; We know that these are much needed lessons, but enough already with the lessons. Give our boys the wisdom to avoid costly giveaways, the strength to clear our crease of infidels and the sight to put a handful past Hell's keeper, Biron. Bring us another victory tonight, please do not forsake us now.

Posted by: JSchon | April 17, 2008 3:11 PM | Report abuse

Anybody has Briere doll?

I can supply the needles. :-)

Here goes lil' pr*ck, ping!

Posted by: King Huet | April 17, 2008 3:14 PM | Report abuse

I became a big Caps fan about seven years ago and I am a full season-ticket holder. I am disappointed with how they have played so far, but not all that uptight about it. I said to my wife all season long: All I want is for them to make the playoffs. I mean, think about what a good team this will be with the injured guys back, if we can add a big body on defense!

I think all of us need to recognize that without Clark (30-plus goals, big body), without Nylander (top free-agent signing), and without Pothier (ice time leader), this team came back from 6-14-1 to make the playoffs. It's freaking amazing. It's crazy unbelieveable. How can anyone complain if we lose in Round One? I don't want to lose, but it will still have been a great year.

I agree that the Flyers have used up their bag of tricks and if we can play a solid game, the series will be 2-2. We got outplayed completely in Game 2 and it was only 2-0; we got outplayed almost completely in Game 3 and it was only 4-3 until the penalty shot. The Flyers' best effort has not yielded blowouts.

With that said, two points:

I do think Kolzig should start tonight, as a spark.

And I think BB should take La Canfora's advice from yesterday and shuffle a bit during the game. I like Fedorov on the first line, but I think they should mix up OV and Semin -- sometimes send OV out with line 2 and sometimes with line 1. Maybe even send OV out with line 3 a few times. There's no way their top defensive pair can be out there for everything. The playoffs are not about chemistry, they are about creating opportunities, and I'd like to see BB try that.

Posted by: jammand | April 17, 2008 3:14 PM | Report abuse

I've spoken against Mike Wise on these boards before. That is a perfect example of why.

Posted by: DrinkingPartner | April 17, 2008 3:17 PM | Report abuse

Amen JSchon.

Well done :D

Posted by: mauree | April 17, 2008 3:17 PM | Report abuse

I like the idea of mixing it up with OV, but if Philly wises up it could be like what we saw Boston do with Chara, anytime OV stepped onto the ice, Chara came on, when OV got off, Chara got off. They could pull the same stunt with one of their D-men.

Posted by: AP | April 17, 2008 3:20 PM | Report abuse

We could use a Bertuzzi tonight.

Posted by: JSchon | April 17, 2008 3:26 PM | Report abuse

@Jammand

I think one of the best advices for the Caps came from *gasp* a flyers fan. Maybe because it sounds a bit sacrilegious: sit Ovie 1-2 shifts if the stay out too much.

I think it's imperative that Ovie plays shorter shifts. He must be 100% in the playoffs. Too long = tired = less than 95% effectiveness. That was good enough in the regular season, it's a huge NO-NO in the playoffs. Not to mention the fact that it affects the team.

While in the regular season a slightly tired Ovie is still more effective than most players, in the playoffs he's not. Nobody is. Fresh powerful legs are always more effective. You need 100% speed, 100% power, 100% lungs. 100% of the times. Yeah, it sounds like that commercial lol... but it's true!


Posted by: mauree | April 17, 2008 3:29 PM | Report abuse

@Jschon

We could use a Joe Jacoby tonight

Posted by: Hew | April 17, 2008 3:30 PM | Report abuse

JSchon, Hew, anyone else, what we really need is a to come out and acutally outplay the Flyers and show them we're not done yet. Rough stuff is just a bonus.

Posted by: AP | April 17, 2008 3:32 PM | Report abuse

The Caps could use me tonight.

Posted by: Mike Tyson | April 17, 2008 3:33 PM | Report abuse

Oh, I heard word that Modry's father passed away today, but he's going to play (Modry not his fater....) so look to see at least one Flyer pumped up for today's game.

Posted by: AP | April 17, 2008 3:34 PM | Report abuse

What do you think Barry? The Caps D is playing horribly right now. Can they rebound or is this series already out of hand for my Capitals?

Barry Melrose: (3:19 PM ET ) Well no, I expect this to be a long series. I would be very surpsied if they do not even the series tonight. It has shocked me that they have held Ovechkin to one goal. But I expect them Caps to come back tonight.


Everyone relax, our boys will show up tonight! GO CAPS GO!

Posted by: cmcclure22 | April 17, 2008 3:35 PM | Report abuse

Will there be a cop on the Caps bench to protect them? Im dead serious...Those Philly mans may mob into the bench.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 17, 2008 3:36 PM | Report abuse

I, personally, will be interested to see the new power play. Also, considering how well, overall, Semin's been playing, how well Backstrom is able to play tonight, with maybe a little bit more rest.

A fresher Backstrom can only be a good thing.

And if Ovie's double-teamed, maybe Fedorov can inflict some damage.

Posted by: DrinkingPartner | April 17, 2008 3:38 PM | Report abuse

@AP

Just trying to lighten the mood a little

Posted by: Hew | April 17, 2008 3:42 PM | Report abuse

Jschon,

Good prayer. I shall give you a medal if we win.

828, need more negative.

Greenie, everyone thinks we need to pound the Flyers tonight. I am only advocating it happens VERY early.

Melrose thinks we will win. we are screwed...

Posted by: Leeguru | April 17, 2008 3:43 PM | Report abuse

It's really nice to see how far off GM is from a contender.
Make no mistake that AZAMAT & GM have FAILED to "build" anything.

Posted by: Chief | April 17, 2008 3:43 PM | Report abuse

This day is dragging on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on...

Posted by: Hew | April 17, 2008 3:44 PM | Report abuse

Amen, JSchon!

The nerves are starting to set in. Almost time for the deep breathing exercises and a sedative.
I realized the Caps haven't played well since I took my jersey off the wall the last day of regular season to wash it. I put it back up yesterday. So all the bad luck is gone from my end.

Let's Go Caps!!!

Posted by: jmu_capsgirl | April 17, 2008 3:46 PM | Report abuse

@chief

ataboy! we need reverse mojo!

Posted by: King Huet | April 17, 2008 3:47 PM | Report abuse

@ JMUcapsgirl -- you washed the jersey?!?!

YOU NEVER WASH THE JERSEY UNTIL THE SEASON IS OVER.

Posted by: Go Skins Go | April 17, 2008 3:47 PM | Report abuse

Leave it to a GIRL college student to not only actually do laundry, but to take something off the wall to clean it! You must respect the streak!

Boo, Jill, and kim and everyone are gonna get me for that....

Posted by: Leeguru | April 17, 2008 3:49 PM | Report abuse

Will there be a cop on the Caps bench to protect them? Im dead serious...Those Philly mans may mob into the bench.

Yeah, the officer name is Donald Brashear.

As much as I hate Domi, I was laughing how he landed a couple of good ones on that drunk philphy phillies fan who jumped into penalty box.

LOL. That was hilarious. Anybody has YouTube link?

Posted by: King Huet | April 17, 2008 3:50 PM | Report abuse

828 is really stupid. I think he must be Breashear Brother or Huet sister which means he have a lot between the legs.

People in France are like that. Goalie Men have a difficulties between the leg and girls didn't

hahahaha good luck
Flyers 5
Capitals 2

Alex Ovechkikikikin sucks

Posted by: The MAN | April 17, 2008 3:50 PM | Report abuse

yeah, sorry, I'd like it to stay the original away white, not turn into one of those girlie pink ones. The last weekend of the season, a drunken idiot spilled spiked koolaid all over it. I had to save it. Besides, I don't wear it. Can't, its bad luck, which is why its on the wall to begin with.

Posted by: jmu_capsgirl | April 17, 2008 3:51 PM | Report abuse

If Boudreau finds the tweaked 1st line not producing either, bumping up Semin could help. The first line as: Ovechkin/Fedorov/Semin might be worth a shot.

The first line hasn't been generating many shots because Backstrom doesn't shoot nearly enough as he should and Kozlov has been invisible, and they both keep looking to OV to be the one shooting. Moving Semin up will put someone else on the 1st line who's willing to shoot. When they key in on Ovechkin, it'll give Fedorov and Semin a little more space to operate.

Posted by: k-tron | April 17, 2008 3:54 PM | Report abuse

I haven't washed my home red one, though! Its still in its place on the other wall.

Posted by: jmu_capsgirl | April 17, 2008 3:55 PM | Report abuse

It's all good Hew, was a little rilled up from hanging around the philly blogs, pulling a Jeff

Posted by: AP | April 17, 2008 3:56 PM | Report abuse

@AP

Didn't know they could type let alone read printed words without pretty pictures.

Posted by: Hew | April 17, 2008 3:58 PM | Report abuse

Eh, they have a few, I saw some of our other regulars in there. But one thing we all have in common, we hate Pittsburgh

Posted by: AP | April 17, 2008 4:01 PM | Report abuse

@jmu_capsgirl
I can't believe the Jersey was washed - everyone knows it must be able to stand in the corner by itself - Urghhhhhhh!
@JSchon - Amen - Well said!
@Leeguru
I know we need to pound them/hit them/check them early, just want to stick to OUR game, yes clearing them out of the goal crease, but play CAPS hockey which entails a bit of bumping and grinding - sounds good - just don't stoop to the Flyer's level - step above my friends!!!

Posted by: Greenie | April 17, 2008 4:02 PM | Report abuse

I like your message Greenie, I think my battalion's old motto would be perfect here.

"Unus Supra"

"One Above" or "Above All"

Posted by: AP | April 17, 2008 4:05 PM | Report abuse

Washington and Pitsburgh sucks.

crosby and ovechkikin sucks

RICHARDS IS GOD

Posted by: The Man | April 17, 2008 4:07 PM | Report abuse

"Sorry bunch of loosers"

Alas, this child was left behind. Loosers indeed.

Posted by: Steve R | April 17, 2008 4:07 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: Hew | April 17, 2008 4:09 PM | Report abuse

stoop to what level?

playing hockey?

Get a grip everyone. I am an unobjective caps fan and I do not feel there is much 'dirty play' out there. Laich's hit - dirty.
Crosscheck on Hartnell after a goal - dirty.
Green slash for no reason - dirty

seriously, it works both ways.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 17, 2008 4:10 PM | Report abuse

@The MAN

"RICHARDS IS GOD"

Are you saying you worship penis?

Posted by: JSchon | April 17, 2008 4:12 PM | Report abuse

@ the man

What's an ovechkikin?

Posted by: Hew | April 17, 2008 4:13 PM | Report abuse

go tell your mommy or babysitter that you need an ed-u-ma-cation

Posted by: @THE MAN | April 17, 2008 4:14 PM | Report abuse

THE MAN! I told you not to stay up past your bedtime! Now go take your retard pills and go to bed. You have to wake up early tomorrow for you ESOL class.

Posted by: THE MAN's Mom | April 17, 2008 4:18 PM | Report abuse

Sasha O, davai! Ty vse mozhesh! Semin, ty otlichny strelok, zabei kak umeesh. Serega, ty starshii, pokazhi rebyatam, kak igrat komandoi. Vitya, ty silnee vsekh. Davaite, rebyata! SHAAAAAAAIBU!

Posted by: Fedya | April 17, 2008 4:21 PM | Report abuse

I'm sorry!!! I didn't want a pink jersey! I'll get a Caps logo tattooed somewhere if it will redeem me! You realize now that if they lose, I am going to cry all summer. Great, I've screwed with the mojo. I'm going to burn in hockey fan-hell. hmmm....Who do you think is there?

Let's go Caps!!

Posted by: jmu_capsgirl | April 17, 2008 4:21 PM | Report abuse

WINGS FANS GETTING OUR BACK!!

------------
Anybody who accuses Ovechkin for being a diver obviously isnt a hockey fan. He's one of the best the game has to offer, and you say you have lost all respect?

Looks to me he drew a penalty out of it....Your problem should be with the ref...he could of put him in for 2 mins...

Grow up chumps..Your team is playing great...Your fans make the place stink of crybaby....$20 says one of you goons jumps on the ice tonight to try and start something...idiots
Posted by Red Wings Fan on April 17, 2008 4:03 PM

And if your motto is "Vengence Now!!" Dont ever cry about Philly fans getting a bad rap. You provoke these articles.

The Flyers spin machine and marketing team spit out the biggest pig-slop feeding catch phrase that you losers would eat up and call your own. The Flyers front office is sitting in their box..counting your dollars laughing about how easy it is to put a WWF atmosphere out there to make you go nuts....

The only people left in Philly are the ones that weren't smart enough to leave.
Posted by Red Wings Fan on April 17, 2008 4:20 PM

Posted by: I LOVE IT!!! | April 17, 2008 4:22 PM | Report abuse

Anybody have a LIVE WEB LINK to the game like last time? I can't get to a TV.

Posted by: josh | April 17, 2008 4:23 PM | Report abuse

lllllllllllllllloooooooooooooooooooserrrrrrrrrrrrrrrssssssssssssssssss.

From the Man

Posted by: at every capts fan | April 17, 2008 4:26 PM | Report abuse

During a recent Caps game a growing Caps fan requested that I get her a custom Caps jersey with the name 'OVERCHIKIN' on the back.

She also noticed that at Verizon Center OVERCHIKIN has his own mascot. A giant chicken skating around with a regal look in his face: Now dubbed 'The Overchicken'

While these are very astute "observations" I've decided to get her an OVECHKIN jersey and will stuff a chicken wing in her mouth should we see 'The Overchicken' mascot skating around between periods at a sports bar or other public venue.

[sigh]
Good Caps fans are so hard to find far far from home...

Posted by: austinsteve | April 17, 2008 4:28 PM | Report abuse

If this has been said in the umpteen hundred posts above I apologize in advance, but...:

We need to put Olie in not because we're all a member of a Kolizg Cult, and not because we irrationally think he's better than Huet (He's not, Huet is a better goalie skill-wise and reflex-wise at this stage of their careers).

We need to put Olie in because you can't tell me with a straight face that Kolzig would have let Philly push him around in the crease like Huet has been in the series. This team needs ALL SIX players on the ice showing that we mean business (emphasis on "Mean"). The next time someone tries to push our goaltender around, they'll get cold-cocked in the face by one of toughest goalies in the business and knocked to the ice. Once the team gets riled up again and we beat the Flyers, we can go back to Huet in the next round (by then, Olie will be worn out anyways ;) ).

It's time to pull up our skate-straps and not take any crap!

Posted by: Pete | April 17, 2008 4:34 PM | Report abuse

I wouldnt put too much into a Wings fan getting anyones back

Detroit smells like a dirty foot.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 17, 2008 4:35 PM | Report abuse

Tarik,

Washington Post team has been a disaster.
Look at what Mike Wise did?
http://www.the700level.com/2008/04/flyers-gets-wis.html

And LaCantReporta just woke up from coma. He thinks its 1998 and Kolzig is elite goaltender.

Have to tell ya, Corey Masisak has much better help from WT team, much better, their staff writer are on par.

You're our only hope. Hail to the chief!


Posted by: King Huet | April 17, 2008 4:44 PM | Report abuse

correction: staff writerS

Posted by: King Huet | April 17, 2008 4:45 PM | Report abuse

THE MAN! Your mom told me you've been hanging around some Caps blog for the past few days. If only you spent as much energy learning english, you might actually be able to form complete sentences and finally kiss a girl. Ok, maybe you never will but don't give up! Don't ever give up. I know it hard to spell words like "Caps", "loser" and "the" but you have to have faith. You can do it son, I know you can! Now come on home and take your retard pills like your mom told you to do.

Posted by: THE MAN's Dad | April 17, 2008 4:46 PM | Report abuse

NO! Please dont take me!

Posted by: THE MAN's Retard Pills | April 17, 2008 4:48 PM | Report abuse

Lol - THE MAN's retard pills can spell better than him.

Posted by: Hew | April 17, 2008 4:52 PM | Report abuse

from http://dcprosportsreport.com/?p=207

Critical Game 4 tonight. The Capitals need this win to come back home to the Phone Booth tied at 2-2. Falling down 3 games to 1 would not be very pretty.

Huet will be in goal. Good move Bruce. The calls for Huet to be replaced by Kolzig were flat out wrong. The defense needs to play defense and get some roughness in their play, period.

Posted by: King Huet | April 17, 2008 4:54 PM | Report abuse

@the person who can't post their name
"stoop to what level?

playing hockey?

Get a grip everyone. I am an unobjective caps fan and I do not feel there is much 'dirty play' out there. Laich's hit - dirty.
Crosscheck on Hartnell after a goal - dirty.
Green slash for no reason - dirty

seriously, it works both ways."
(oh yeah no Flyer has been in the box for deliberate slashing/holding/interference/hooking/tripping etc.......)(Caps aren't innocent either!)but until this series I haven't seen so many holding/hooking and slashing penalties....we didn't do it all year so as the story goes you dish out what the other team does to you, No, we don't have to do it, but we are submitting to a different level of hockey than we are used to.

Play our game - CAPS hockey and stop worrying about whether the Flyers are going to hit us or crosscheck at every opportunity.....Stooping to a bullish level....that's all!
-Sorry the proper way to state it would be an "nonobjective" caps fan.

Posted by: Greenie | April 17, 2008 4:58 PM | Report abuse

I noticed on Ted L's blog that Raul Fernandez, on of the Caps' minority owners, was part of a small group that met with the Pope today. We'll take all the help we can get.

Posted by: Jim B | April 17, 2008 4:58 PM | Report abuse

Kolzig may not do any better, but I honestly don't think he would do any worse. Huet has not played well at all in this series. Some good saves to be sure, probably some that Olie would have let in, but a lot of goals that he (Huet) was making the save on in his first 13 games as a capital. It's all about making the clutch saves in the playoffs, not just the easy ones.

Posted by: GusDaMan | April 17, 2008 5:02 PM | Report abuse

hey! quit knocking Phillie! If it wasnt for Phillie we wouldnt have strippers!

Posted by: j | April 17, 2008 5:03 PM | Report abuse

Peace and safety to all!
No LETS GO CAPS!!!!!!!!!!!!

Posted by: Greenie | April 17, 2008 5:07 PM | Report abuse

I'm thinking that Chief might fit in well in Philly.

Posted by: Steve R | April 17, 2008 5:15 PM | Report abuse

I'd rather put Johnson in the net than Kolzig. But ignore me, Olie's lovers are all over the place. Exactly when we need a unity, we came back to goalie controversy again. And it's all began with that darn LaCanfora article. Kolzig is LaCanfora and Tarik is Huet. See what happen when you put Kolzig in the net?

Oh, and Kolzig sucked not only vs. Chicago, but vs. Leafs too. He was given the last chance, he blew it.

We have to stick with Huet for better or worse. I can only see Olie in the net if Huet will go to complete meltdown, like it happened to Hasek or Kiprisoff.

Posted by: King Huet | April 17, 2008 5:15 PM | Report abuse

So I turn on my Sirius radio and Foo Fighters "The Pretender" is just starting. That is a great sign.

LET'S GO CAPS!!!

I guess Front Page is the place.

Posted by: Super | April 17, 2008 5:21 PM | Report abuse

All I'm saying is if jean Claude Van Damme can come off the bench and stop a break away in a stanley cup final game then how hard can playing professional goalie be?

Posted by: Leeguru | April 17, 2008 5:21 PM | Report abuse

@Leeguru,

The muscles from Brussels didn't have Scott Hartnell in his crease.

Posted by: old time hockey | April 17, 2008 5:26 PM | Report abuse

All this talk of who's fault it is that we're in the pot hole we're in... Let's just get back to our game and we'll win it.

I see Huet here for the next few years as a bridge between Olie and the young goalies in the system. They're reportedly pretty good, though very young. So a 3 year deal sounds about right to me. That should give them 2 years seasoning in the Juniors and AHL, and 1 year backing up Huet.

We need a D-man signed. One that has a decidedly physical presence to clear out the crease. It would be nice if Schultz would get an attitude, but I just don't see it happening. It also would be nice to have this D-man have some experience.

Posted by: Greg S. | April 17, 2008 5:26 PM | Report abuse

There are thousands of people from Philly who now live in DC. How many people from DC move to Philly? My guess.....zero.

Posted by: fansince74 | April 17, 2008 5:29 PM | Report abuse

I have the feeling that tonight will either be a game we still talk about ten years from now (for good reasons) or the worst game the Caps have played in years.

I hope for the former.

Posted by: Kip | April 17, 2008 5:29 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: Go SOX GO | April 17, 2008 5:36 PM | Report abuse

We must score goals!
We must Win!
And Please hope that Caps will PUNCH those Flyers in their mouths!

Posted by: CapsFan555 | April 17, 2008 5:43 PM | Report abuse

Tarik,

I can't believe you shaved! You should hear how much greif I get about my playoff "beard"!

Posted by: fullright | April 17, 2008 5:46 PM | Report abuse

The Caps suck - no chance they will win tonight. The Flyers own them... Alex won't score multiple goals tonight and Huet will look like swiss cheese. The Caps just don't have it in them tonight. I can tell by the color of the sky... it's going to be a good day for the Flyers.

The Caps should not be here - they are nothing... they can't play hockey and should be golfing right now.

THERE IS NO CHANCE THE CAPS WIN TONIGHT

The Man - you are so right about the Caps... I think I am going to be a Flyers fan now because the Caps aren't worth my time.

The Caps just don't have it in them - they got nothing!

Posted by: 828 | April 17, 2008 6:02 PM | Report abuse

"828 is really stupid. I think he must be Breashear Brother or Huet sister which means he have a lot between the legs."
Posted by THE MAN from the DUNGEEN

Why thank you...

Posted by: 828 | April 17, 2008 6:04 PM | Report abuse

I've said it before "worst team in the league with under 3 mins left."

Posted by: Phil C. | April 17, 2008 7:54 PM | Report abuse

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