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Boudreau talks goalies

Without specifying which goaltender he plans to start tonight at Centre Bell tonight, Coach Bruce Boudreau did answer a few questions about the thinking that went into the decision.

"We talked about it as a coaching staff and with [Artus Irbe's] input, the coaches' input [George McPhee's] input, we sat down and thought, 'What do we do?'," Boudreau said. "And we decided this is what we're doing."

As I mentioned in a previous post, rookie Semyon Varlamov came off the ice first this morning, which, during the regular season, always meant that he'll be between the pipes tonight for Game 3. He is 2-0-0 with a 1.94 goals against average and .930 save percentage in this building.

"When you have 24 hours to go over it, you can look at a whole lot of things and make an informed decision rather than a decision of quick impulse," Boudreau added. "It's not quite situational stats like baseball, but sometimes that comes into play."

So, Coach, did Theodore's history in Montreal play a role in your decision?

"It could have been a factor," Boudreau said, "but I don't think it really was."

"Taking nothing away from Jose or Varly or Michal Neuvirth, but we haven't had the Luongos or Brodeurs who have played 74 games a year," he added. "So we've moved them back and forth and they've played an equal amount. So us changing goalies isn't as big a deal as if [New Jersey backup] Yann Danis were to play in Philly."

Theodore, who has allowed 12 goals on 61 shots in two appearances as a opposing goalie here, declined to talk after staying out with the scratches for extra work.

"Not on a game day, especially when I'm not playing," he said politely.

Some other items of interest:

*I also mentioned the changes to the forward lines. But it's unclear if the D pairs are going to change at all after a substandard performance Saturday by top pair Jeff Schultz and Mike Green, who were on the ice for four of the Canadiens' five goals in Game 2.

But given that John Erskine and Tyler Sloan skated with the scratches, it's possible there won't be any changes.

*The other Caps' scratches should be the same -- Boyd Gordon, Quintin Laing and Scott Walker.

*For the Habs, it looks like Glen Metropolit is going to return after missing eight games with a shoulder injury. Based on the skate, it looks like he's going to replace Sergei Kostitsyn.

*Getting back to Eric Belanger and faceoffs, he leads the league at 80.6 percent to help the Caps win 60.6-percent of their draws.

*The Caps are 7-11 all time in Game 3s when the series is tied.

I'll check in before the game with a lineup.

By Tarik El-Bashir  |  April 19, 2010; 1:41 PM ET
 
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Next: Tonight's lineup: Caps at Canadiens

Comments

Varlamov.

Posted by: richmondphil | April 19, 2010 1:51 PM | Report abuse

Gabs is Varly bias and I can't blame him....but theo deserves another chance

Posted by: broud0 | April 19, 2010 1:51 PM | Report abuse

Theodore

Posted by: broud0 | April 19, 2010 1:53 PM | Report abuse

Watch out for Metro on the PP.

For us, crash the net; from the circles, top corner.

Posted by: Justafan | April 19, 2010 1:54 PM | Report abuse

"Taking nothing away from Jose or Varly or Michal Neuvirth, but we haven't had the Luongos or Brodeurs who have played 74 games a year," he added. "So we've moved them back and forth and they've played an equal amount. So us changing goalies isn't as big a deal as if [New Jersey backup] Yann Danis were to play in Philly."

Hey, this is what me and some others (joek443) have been saying the entire time.

It doesn't matter who is net really, because they are about equal in play. If Varlamov is going to receive less heckling, than that is going to factor in. It's just a cold, hard fact.


Posted by: richmondphil | April 19, 2010 1:56 PM | Report abuse

I wanted Theodore to start Game 2 last year, as opposed to yanking him.

I flipped-flopped.

Posted by: richmondphil | April 19, 2010 1:57 PM | Report abuse

Theo at home and Varly away?

If this is going to get us four wins now and 16 total by the end, then I'm all for it.

Posted by: MyPostIDisAfake | April 19, 2010 1:59 PM | Report abuse

its a killer decision

Posted by: broud0 | April 19, 2010 2:01 PM | Report abuse

the just announced the STH game 5 ticket presale

Posted by: _stevo | April 19, 2010 2:02 PM | Report abuse

its a killer decision

Posted by: broud0 | April 19, 2010 2:01 PM |

Haha, yeah. Although it's obvious what we both want personally (me, Varly and you, Theo), I'm glad I'm not BB.

If the team loses the game, he's going to be scorched for the decision either way. The conundrum of being a coach..when you win, the players get the credit, and when you lose, the coach is to blame! :)

Posted by: richmondphil | April 19, 2010 2:05 PM | Report abuse

I would like to see Theo get a playoff win wearing a Caps jersey. It might not happen.

Posted by: LloydChristmas | April 19, 2010 2:08 PM | Report abuse

Backcheck, especially top line.

Posted by: FloridaCapsFan | April 19, 2010 2:09 PM | Report abuse

If the team loses the game, he's going to be scorched for the decision either way. The conundrum of being a coach..when you win, the players get the credit, and when you lose, the coach is to blame! :)

Posted by: richmondphil | April 19, 2010 2:05 PM

I don't think you can necessarily say that. What if they lose 1-0 or 2-1 and Varly plays really well?

Of course the odds of the Caps keeping an opponent under 3 goals is pretty slim.

Posted by: Moose33 | April 19, 2010 2:11 PM | Report abuse

I have to admit, I would hate to make that decision. But Greenie, should sit for bit, let 74 play more!

Posted by: buzcajun | April 19, 2010 2:15 PM | Report abuse

*The Caps are 7-11 all time in Game 3s when the series is tied.

I'll check in before the game with a lineup.

By Tarik El-Bashir

Is that Tarik, or Ron Weber giving us that stat? Oh, excuse me, but Weber would know the record both home and away, day games vs night games and national TV games vs games shown only locally. On Monday.

Posted by: tominfl1 | April 19, 2010 2:15 PM | Report abuse

Moose, that actually came in my head, but even if we lose like 1-0, someone, somewhere is going to criticize BB for it.

"Well if Theo was in, we would've won!"

Posted by: richmondphil | April 19, 2010 2:16 PM | Report abuse

Theo woulda scored!

Posted by: mikebrady1 | April 19, 2010 2:17 PM | Report abuse

When is BB going to come down on Green? He protects that kid like he was his own. Dont get me wrong I love Green but he hasnt been good and wasnt good last year. BB is quick to critize other's yet Green always gets a free pass. Maybe some harsh words for Green from BB would wake him up.

Posted by: darrylrbaker | April 19, 2010 2:18 PM | Report abuse

We are getting to the I like Billy or I like Sunny at this point..both can win.

Posted by: RichC3 | April 19, 2010 2:18 PM | Report abuse

If we don't make the stanley cup finals....Trade Mike Green, Alzner and a top forward for Sabres Miller.

We'd win atleast three cups in the next 5 years by making this move.

Posted by: Nats1924 | April 19, 2010 2:18 PM | Report abuse

I wanted Theodore to start Game 2 last year, as opposed to yanking him.

I flipped-flopped.

Posted by: richmondphil | April 19, 2010 1:57 PM

Shall we start calling you "Mister Senator?"

Posted by: tominfl1 | April 19, 2010 2:18 PM | Report abuse

richmondphil, that is true. I should have added "people with common sense" somewhere in there.

Posted by: Moose33 | April 19, 2010 2:19 PM | Report abuse

If we don't make the stanley cup finals....Trade Mike Green, Alzner and a top forward for Sabres Miller.

We'd win atleast three cups in the next 5 years by making this move.

Posted by: Nats1924 | April 19, 2010 2:18 PM |

Yeah, lets do it! Ruff would be all over this one! lol..

Posted by: richmondphil | April 19, 2010 2:22 PM | Report abuse

Sometimes when BB switches to Varly, the team tightens up and plays much better D. Maybe that is part of it. I'm in the group that believes the quality of the defensive play (incl from the forwards) will decide more than who is in goal. If Montreal gets fewer wide open shots, then it's the Caps game to take.

Posted by: tominfl1 | April 19, 2010 2:22 PM | Report abuse

I don't know A-Train's contract status but Green for Volchenkov straight up...just think about it.

Posted by: Moose33 | April 19, 2010 2:23 PM | Report abuse

If we don't make the stanley cup finals....Trade Mike Green, Alzner and a top forward for Sabres Miller.

We'd win atleast three cups in the next 5 years by making this move.

Posted by: Nats1924

_______________________________________

....and then we all sober up and face reality.

Posted by: LloydChristmas | April 19, 2010 2:25 PM | Report abuse

Anton is a pending UFA though..

We can snag him for nothing, if he wants to come here, that is...

Posted by: richmondphil | April 19, 2010 2:26 PM | Report abuse

Monday April 19th.... Happy Backstrom day. Does our number 19 get back to back hat tricks.. That would be sick...

Posted by: samb99 | April 19, 2010 2:27 PM | Report abuse

Ouch..I just confused Ruff with Darcy Regier.

Whatever..them two are basically one person now.

Posted by: richmondphil | April 19, 2010 2:28 PM | Report abuse

Where the hell has Mike Green been? This is why he was left off of Team Canada, he has a knack for not showing up for big time games. He needs to lose his ego and play solid "D" like we know he can. After the season they should think about moving him. If we could get a franchise goalie for Green, Alzner and Fleishman.....I would make the move.

Posted by: crosbyisajoke | April 19, 2010 2:28 PM | Report abuse

Why is there any more speculation? Jose said he wasn't playing....We don't need Bruce to confirm it.

Posted by: crosbyisajoke | April 19, 2010 2:31 PM | Report abuse

This is a must win game for the CAPS if they are to establish themselves as the better team, which they have not appeared to be so far. Varlamov must play big tonight.

Posted by: DCFanatic | April 19, 2010 2:32 PM | Report abuse

There's no reason to trade off a bunch of assests for a goalie.

We have 3 very young goalie prospects about to either make their marks in the NHL, or go down fighting.

I say, wait until we see how Varly, Neuvy, and Holtby move along...

Posted by: richmondphil | April 19, 2010 2:32 PM | Report abuse

Well here is Varly's chance to make his coach look like a genius... he's gotta absolutely be on top of his game.

Posted by: rachel216 | April 19, 2010 2:32 PM | Report abuse

"The Caps are 7-11 all time in Game 3s when the series is tied."

I'd really like to know the Caps record on April 19ths when the temperature is between 10 and 15 degrees Celsius during an Olympic year when I skipped breakfast and the coach has a garden salad for lunch and the NASDAQ is under 2500.

Posted by: spacecadetkid | April 19, 2010 2:33 PM | Report abuse

I've disliked MGreen since his playoff performance against the pens...

Think about it for a sec - Compare his numbers to all of the other DMan that made the Olympic team, that alone tells you HOW BAD HIS DEFENSE IS!!!!!

Mike Green STINKS!

Posted by: Nats1924 | April 19, 2010 2:34 PM | Report abuse

the just announced the STH game 5 ticket presale

Posted by: _stevo | April 19, 2010 2:02 PM | Report abuse

How do I get notice of the presales? I did last year, but have not seen anything this year. I want to be on a presale list, just in case this thing goes 7 games. I would want to get game 7 tix!!!!

Posted by: OviFan08 | April 19, 2010 2:35 PM | Report abuse

Nats1924: Exactly, well, I wouldn't say he "stinks", I think he is lazy at times and thinks that his skill will get him by, he doesn't work hard enough.

Posted by: crosbyisajoke | April 19, 2010 2:38 PM | Report abuse

Take the body and the legs will die...check the crap out of them and they will relent.

Posted by: lylewimbledon | April 19, 2010 2:38 PM | Report abuse

You have to login to your sth account for the presales this year. If more tickets become available later from the release of NHL holds they can be purchased without a sth account.

Posted by: mikebrady1 | April 19, 2010 2:40 PM | Report abuse

Where the hell has Mike Green been? This is why he was left off of Team Canada, he has a knack for not showing up for big time games. He needs to lose his ego and play solid "D" like we know he can. After the season they should think about moving him. If we could get a franchise goalie for Green, Alzner and Fleishman.....I would make the move.

Posted by: crosbyisajoke | April 19, 2010 2:28 PM

---------------------------------------

I don't get this sentiment that Green doesn't show up for big time games. In Green's first ever playoff game he scored two goals in the third period to tie the game.

Sure, he had two poor games to start this series, but you can't make a blanket statement about his ability to show up for big time games because of it.

Posted by: Raber | April 19, 2010 2:40 PM | Report abuse

There must be extra pressure on Varly though. He's gotta be thinking "they chose me, I have to play well."

My confidence level with Varly isn't where it was pre-injury. Everytime it looks like he's back... he's not 100% quite there. Step it up, Varly. GO VARLY.

Posted by: rachel216 | April 19, 2010 2:40 PM | Report abuse

Green disappears because he actually gets forechecked in the playoffs.

Posted by: lylewimbledon | April 19, 2010 2:45 PM | Report abuse

Raber: It's not just these two games, do you remember the playoffs last year? Do you remember how horrible he was on D the first half of this season? The worst was the 5th goal last game, or was it the second? He doesn't show up, why do you think Canada would leave a guy who has led D men in scoring the past two seasons? He is lazy.

Posted by: crosbyisajoke | April 19, 2010 2:45 PM | Report abuse

You can dislike Green if you want, but proposing that Regier would even think about trading Miller is a bit absurd.

Posted by: richmondphil | April 19, 2010 2:46 PM | Report abuse

I agree about Miller.

Posted by: crosbyisajoke | April 19, 2010 2:47 PM | Report abuse

I like the idea of letting those 3 goalies(Varly, Neuvy, Holtby), duke it out...Obviously one should be used as trade bait in due coarse...flip him for a pick or two, keep the youth movement alive brotha!

Posted by: broud0 | April 19, 2010 2:49 PM | Report abuse

Plekanac on Varlamov;
" I don't know, it's not like he is the best rookie goaltender this year. It's not like they have Tuukkkkka or Jonas out there. Because of this, I think we have the advantage."

Varlamov responds;

"Tomas who? Pivonka? "

Posted by: richmondphil | April 19, 2010 2:49 PM | Report abuse

No matter who plays goal, our top D pairing needs to really step up their game. Carlson and Poti should probably be out there vs. the Plekanec line - any other pairing will just get exposed.

But the forwards also need to get back and help out - backcheck.

Posted by: Timbo_1 | April 19, 2010 2:53 PM | Report abuse

I've got news for folks -- trades are not allowed during the playoffs. As well, please note, you have no idea how BB is interacting with his players, including Green. Your suggestion that he ream him publicly may not be the best coaching move.

Third period Saturday night was a turning point in this series. Discuss.

Posted by: Justafan | April 19, 2010 2:54 PM | Report abuse

I find that this team doesn't put enough emphasis on crisp passes. They simply want to push the puck towards their teammates, and let their talent do the rest.
I was watching the Wings-Coyotes yesterday, and their precision passes were quite admirable. Just being able to skate down the ice and make crisp passes in stride will result in much better quality shots for us...and knowing that 8, 28, and 19 are supreme shooters in this league, that alone should yield more goals for us. The general sloppiness until the proverbial back-against-the-wall situations is very frustrating with this bunch.

Posted by: kman2 | April 19, 2010 2:58 PM | Report abuse

trades are not allowed during the playoffs.

______________________

But it lets me do it in NHL 2010 !

Posted by: richmondphil | April 19, 2010 2:58 PM | Report abuse

I've got news for folks -- trades are not allowed during the playoffs.

Posted by: Justafan | April 19, 2010 2:54 PM

What, what, whaaaaaaat!?! Damn, so much for my master plan to package half our D core for a spare Zamboni tire.

Posted by: Moose33 | April 19, 2010 2:59 PM | Report abuse

I do not think Green is lazy. I think he actually gives an all out effort in all of the playoffs games. His problem is that he gets nervous and then plays too tentative as a result. This happens to a lot of players. I don't think it is fair to say it is because of a lack of effort.

This is another reason why the addition of Carlson could be huge for the Caps in the upcoming seasons. Having Carlson being the Caps #1 defenseman will take off a lot of the pressure on Green and I think he will play a lot better.

Posted by: sgm3 | April 19, 2010 2:59 PM | Report abuse

We need to shut down Tomas Placebo

Posted by: SA-Town | April 19, 2010 3:10 PM | Report abuse

"Third period Saturday night was a turning point in this series. Discuss."

That remains to be seen. If the Capitals handle the Canadiens tonight the way that the Penguins handled the Senators yesterday then yes, I might buy into that statement.

Posted by: FloridaCapsFan | April 19, 2010 3:11 PM | Report abuse

BB should put JT60 back in net for game 5.

Posted by: j762 | April 19, 2010 3:17 PM | Report abuse

Scanning the Caps columns today:
The wingers aren't scoring. Or back checking.
Walker is the solution.
No one on the blue line can play defense.
Erskine is the solution.
Neither goalie can win.
Centers are only good at face offs.
Sit the Stars.
Gabby is being out coached.

Its amazing we can beat the Little Sisters of the Poor, who, btw, I hear have a rookie who looks like crosby but plays like a man.

Where is chicken little when you need him?

Posted by: jdhoover | April 19, 2010 3:18 PM | Report abuse

BB should put JT60 back in net for game 5.

Posted by: j762

All depends on how tonight and maybe Thursday go.. if Varly plays well then he'd be back in for game 5.

Posted by: rachel216 | April 19, 2010 3:22 PM | Report abuse

You forgot reversing the NHL rules and being allowed to trade Green in the middle of the playoffs...

Posted by: Moose33 | April 19, 2010 3:24 PM | Report abuse

I figured at least one of you would've appreciated my Pivonka reference...

:(

Posted by: richmondphil | April 19, 2010 3:25 PM | Report abuse

All depends on how tonight and maybe Thursday go.. if Varly plays well then he'd be back in for game 5.

Posted by: rachel216 | April 19, 2010 3:22 PM

What's happening on Thursday?

Posted by: JillC | April 19, 2010 3:28 PM | Report abuse

Go Caps...I hope MG gets a hattie.....and is a D stud tonight.

Posted by: Capsfannmiss | April 19, 2010 3:31 PM | Report abuse

90% of the people here don't know who michal pivonka is.

Posted by: MNMNT | April 19, 2010 3:32 PM | Report abuse

@MNMNT

I did a lot of work to pick Pivonka instead of another former Czech Caps player. They both start with "p" and they played on the same team in the Extraliga.

Figured someone would have pointed it out...Guess that's why I'm not a comedian...:(

Posted by: richmondphil | April 19, 2010 3:36 PM | Report abuse

I know who Pivonka is!

I once bought a car from one of his dealerships!

They have been selling cars in the DC area since 1919. Everybody knows that!

Posted by: wtf_e_fehr | April 19, 2010 3:37 PM | Report abuse

Haha.

Posted by: richmondphil | April 19, 2010 3:40 PM | Report abuse

Actually, doing a bit more wiki-ing, Pleks and Pivonka were even born in the same town!
(Same as Jagr too..)

Posted by: richmondphil | April 19, 2010 3:42 PM | Report abuse

haha awesome.

Posted by: beaupre33 | April 19, 2010 3:49 PM | Report abuse

(Bruce:)Alright you Goalies, Ready to sing your song?
(Michel:)I'd say we are
(Theodore:)Yeah, Lets sing it now!
(Bruce:)Okay, Semyon?
(Semyon:)OK
(Bruce:)Okay, Theodore?
(Theodore:)OK
(Bruce:)Okay Michel?...Michel?...MICHEL!!!
(Michel:)OKAY!!

(Goalies:)
Playoffs, Playoffs time is hear,
Time for joy and time for jeers.
We've been good, but we don't last,
Hurry Stanley, Hurry fast.
Want to dance with Stanley's Cup,
(Michel:) Me, I get the Calder Cup.
(Chipmunks:)
We can hardly stand the wait,
Please Stanley don't be late!!

With profound aplogies to Ross Bagdasarian, Sr.

Posted by: joecct77 | April 19, 2010 3:51 PM | Report abuse

I would have started Theo. He's earned it.

Posted by: Jaymagz | April 19, 2010 3:53 PM | Report abuse

I think there are some older fans on here than you think talking about Pivonka. I was 9 years old when I went to my first (and the Caps first) fan appreciation day. I still have a pic on myself sitting on Ron Lows lap. I've been thru ALL the lean years and it made my skin thick.

Maybe thats why I get upset when I hear all the negative words about the current team.

Posted by: Capsfannmiss | April 19, 2010 3:56 PM | Report abuse

Actually meet Michael the first week in the US, with old assistent coach, Ron(forgot last name) and his wife when she could not speak English, very nice both of them.

Posted by: RichC3 | April 19, 2010 3:56 PM | Report abuse

Who is this Stanley, and why should I worry about his over-sized cup?

Posted by: richmondphil | April 19, 2010 3:57 PM | Report abuse

Has anyone ever considered that maybe it wasn't the goaltending?

Posted by: bagasome1 | April 19, 2010 3:59 PM | Report abuse

Actually meet Michael the first week in the US, with old assistent coach, Ron(forgot last name) and his wife when she could not speak English, very nice both of them.

Posted by: RichC3 | April 19, 2010 3:59 PM | Report abuse

Maybe Green should shoulder some of the blame.....And he wonders why no team Canada for him.

Posted by: bagasome1 | April 19, 2010 4:01 PM | Report abuse

Tons of people have considered it wasn't the goaltending.

If the Caps defense keeps backing up until they are touching our goalie, it doesn't matter who is in net.

Posted by: richmondphil | April 19, 2010 4:05 PM | Report abuse

@joecct77, nice work. Thanks.

Posted by: Justafan | April 19, 2010 4:06 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: crosbyisajoke | April 19, 2010 2:31 PM SAID: "Why is there any more speculation? Jose said he wasn't playing....We don't need Bruce to confirm it."

This is why I am putting my money on Jose starting. Seems too convenient. To me he is pulling a fast one -- unless he is pulling a fast one on a fast one and Varly will start! I just think he wouldn't have said anything if he truly wasn't going to start since he knows it is still a "secret" who is going to start.


Posted by: TheOtherGuyInSection117 | April 19, 2010 4:11 PM | Report abuse

Has anyone ever considered that maybe it wasn't the goaltending?

Posted by: bagasome1 | April 19, 2010 3:59 PM

can't convince everyone...

Posted by: beaupre33 | April 19, 2010 4:13 PM | Report abuse

Who is this Stanley, and why should I worry about his over-sized cup?

Posted by: richmondphil | April 19, 2010 3:57 PM

That's LORD Stanley to you bub.

Posted by: Raber | April 19, 2010 4:14 PM | Report abuse

@joecct77: Love it! I needed a laugh.

@richmondphil: Pivonka was one of my favorites back in the day. I even have a teddy bear named after him. Forget where I got it, but it wears a old style Caps jersey and carries a little plastic hockey stick.

Re: Greenie
Greenie played terrific in the two Calder Cup runs when he was in Hershey, in 2006 when we won and in 2007 when we went to the finals and lost (to Carey Price and Hamilton!). BB was the coach both of those years. I wish he could figure out how to get THAT Mike Green to show up again.

Posted by: tess2201 | April 19, 2010 4:19 PM | Report abuse

I think GMGM's input was along the lines of weighing "right now" and "long term." Its pretty much a given Theodore will not be in DC next season, Varly has played decently and is on the verge of returning to complete form. I think a big factor was that Varly, Neuvi, (and hopefully Hotlby will get a chance) will be the guys next year.

Posted by: breaklance | April 19, 2010 4:21 PM | Report abuse

Theo needs to play. Waiting another game to face the Habs fans will just freeze him needlessly. Sure be nice though if Semin showed up for more than a cheap trip to the box and Green quit trying to prove that he's a one way D. They play and it doesn't matter who's in goal.

Posted by: puckhound | April 19, 2010 4:26 PM | Report abuse

Why do I get the feeling that if you took a sample of caps fans and ran a statistical test for correlation you would find that the people advocating for Theodore to get another chance are the same people who were ready to set themselves on fire when Chris Bourque was waived and claimed by Pittsburgh.

Posted by: LesGrossman | April 19, 2010 4:27 PM | Report abuse

Wow, the negativism in these comments is more than a little disconcerting. Have the first two games made me less confident of a long playoff run? Yes, but I'm not ready to fold the tent like a lot of fans.
And I'm frustrated with Green too, especially since he was so good over the last several weeks of the season, probably his best ever stretch of play defensively. One question on Green:

1) Do you really think BB hasn't talked with Green about his crappy play? Just because the coach hasn't trashed him publicly doesn't mean they haven't had some pretty unpleasant conversations the last 24-48 hours.

The bottom line is we are 2 games into what hopefully will be a long ride. If you've followed the Caps as long as I have you know they don't do anything easy; its just not in their DNA. So there's nothing to do but sit back, relax (to a dergree), and like Locker says, "enjoy the journey."

Posted by: Gould23 | April 19, 2010 4:32 PM | Report abuse

@ all of the Mike Green bashers

Let's trade a top scoring defenseman (Mike Green), our second top defensive prospect in Carl Alzner, and a top forward for Ryan Miller...??? He's a 2 time Norris Trophy finalist. He's lead the league in points and goals the past 2 years and he quarterbacks the leagues top power play. Alzer is a good, steady, stay at home defenseman that will make the big club next year and will bolster our defensive line-up incredibly next year... and what other "top" forward would we get rid of? and who would we replace them with? Bourque? Aucoin? please. How about we let the farm (and GMGM) do it's thing and bring up Holtby next year for a few games, and we develope Varly along with him like weve done with 75% of our team. Greenie gets lazy at times yes, but he's the best defenseman we got. He's not perfect at his job, but nobody is. If we all were, nobody would be typing on this blog right now while we're all still on the clock. Beggers can't be choosers and we have the best "offensive defensman" in the league on our team. He has "defenseman" by his name on the roster, but he's put in the game to put points on the board... and the numbers don't lie. He puts in more than he gives up... so get over it.

Posted by: GOAT21 | April 19, 2010 4:33 PM | Report abuse

"I've got news for folks -- trades are not allowed during the playoffs. As well, please note, you have no idea how BB is interacting with his players, including Green. Your suggestion that he ream him publicly may not be the best coaching move."

At the team meeting yesterday there were no discussion of any changes to defense. Captain has been quite too.

Posted by: ibrusilo | April 19, 2010 4:35 PM | Report abuse

If we don't make the stanley cup finals....Trade Mike Green, Alzner and a top forward for Sabres Miller.

We'd win atleast three cups in the next 5 years by making this move.

Posted by: Nats1924 | April 19, 2010 2:18 PM | Report abuse

Right because Miller has how many Cups? I think all of their talk about goaltending is getting out of hand. Look at who has won the Cup in recent years. Pittsburgh, MAF is a streaky goalie at best but not someone I would call an elite goalie. Detroit, Osgood has now had back to back bad regular seasons and is now a backup and was never an elite goalie. Ducks, Giggy was great in two playoff years and was traded this season as a salery dump, not an elite goalie just one who can get hot. Canes, Ward rookie who didn't even start the playoffs as the starter, been decent since but never among top goalies. That is the list of who has won since the lockout. None of them have a Loungo, Brouder, Miller, ect. There have been six differnt #1 goalies in the finals since the lockout, Flurey, Osgood, Giggy, Emery, Ward, and Dwayne Roloson (who got hurt and had Ty Conklin fill in for a game then Jussi Markkanen for games 3 and beyond.) None of these goalies are one of the top goalies people tend to think about. Only Flurey was an Olympic goalie and that was as a third string goalie.

My point in this is that it is not the top goalies that have been wininng the Cup since the lockout it is the team that has the goalie that gets hot at the right time. What BB is doing is playing whichever goalie is hotter trying to capture that energy and riding it until it wears out. Theo was hot going into the playoffs so he played. Theo is cold now so Varly is playing. If Varly gets cold Theo will be back. Since the lockout 3 of the 4 teams have played at least two goalies in the playoffs. Giguere only played 18 of the Ducks 21 playoff games when they won. Osgood didn't start a game until game 5 of the first round in Detroit's win and Ward didn't start a game until game three of their first round. Having goalies switch while once unheard of in the playoffs is now becomeing more comon and the Caps two goalies are great to do it with because both can be great when on their game so you play who is playing best.

Posted by: icehammer97 | April 19, 2010 4:41 PM | Report abuse

He puts in more than he gives up... so get over it.

Posted by: GOAT21 | April 19, 2010 4:33 PM

Not in the playoffs.

I think you're taking the posts a bit too seriously, noone is trading Green, Alzner and a top forward for Miller, especially Buffalo. I love the guy but he deserves his share of the blame.

Posted by: Moose33 | April 19, 2010 4:42 PM | Report abuse

Still have my Pivonka autograph from when the Caps used to come to the old Hockey Plus in Fairfax to sign autographs. I have Dino, Pivonka, Kelly Miller, Mike Liut, Mike Ridley, Don Beaupre, and Rod Langway all framed together with pictures of me with them when they were there.

I still think the PBJ line that he was on with Bondra and Jones is very similar to the current top line of the Caps.

Posted by: icehammer97 | April 19, 2010 4:50 PM | Report abuse

Rumor is Habs all-time great Jean Béliveau will be sitting behind the bench and Montreal will show him on the jumbtron just before the puck drops.

That building will be electric tonight, but I think if the Caps weather the storm of the first few minutes they'll be okay.

Habs haven't been very good at home this year, let's hope that continues.

Posted by: McBride33 | April 19, 2010 4:50 PM | Report abuse

@ Moose

i know that nobody is trading Green. Gabby wouldn't let that happen. I agree, Greener deserves some of the blame. I'm simply chiming in on the people who are so quick to start throwing his name around in a trade. Playoffs are a different animal. Its not a run and gun type game (where Green accels the most). It's laid back, like a chess match... one team waiting for the other to make a mistake. That's not Greener's game... he's the one who takes the high risk, high reward chances and usually makes them count... but not in the playoffs because of the style of play. You're right Green needs to take his fair share of the blame, but at the same time, there's a reason why the Caps are the highest scoring team in the league... and he's a big part of it. My original post should have been addressed to "people who want to rid Mike Green".

Posted by: GOAT21 | April 19, 2010 5:05 PM | Report abuse

@ Rumor is Habs all-time great Jean Béliveau will be sitting behind the bench and Montreal will show him on the jumbtron just before the puck drops.

Wish I could be there...I'd throw some pop corn at him when he wasnt looking.

Posted by: Capsfannmiss | April 19, 2010 5:06 PM | Report abuse

Green's next contract year is 2011-12.

I bet all of you $1,000 that will be the year he finally shows up in the playoffs.

Posted by: LesGrossman | April 19, 2010 5:09 PM | Report abuse

I'd prefer Theo. But I don't profess to know as much about hockey as BB. Just my two cents, for whatever little they're worth.

Posted by: CDon | April 19, 2010 5:13 PM | Report abuse

@goat21: Are you THE GOAT guy at the Caps games? Anyway, good post on Mike Green. Last year during the playoffs Green played with an injury, and I believe he was still not back to 100% from the bouts of flu. But people don't want to acknowledge that, and they like to find a "goat" (sorry, I happen to like goats, so no disrespect intended!) When Green isn't playing his best game and making mistakes, people over-react. I'm sure that BB is addressing issues with Greenie, just not in the public eye (wisely.)

There are also a LOT of jitters in these posts because of the past two years' disappointments/heartbreaks. Lighten up, folks. The past is the past. I hope the CAPS are more positive than some of the posters on this blog.

And Tarik, I wish the Wa Post would put your picture back on the Caps Insider title page. Better to have your hockey-savvy face than occassional hockey article writers' faces.

Posted by: dccitizen1 | April 19, 2010 5:15 PM | Report abuse

@upthread, whoever talked about passing - yep you nailed it. The most crucial - and consistently undervalued - pass in hockey is that first pass. It all starts with the breakout, and it is why Lidstrom has won X # of Norris trophies. Granted it is much tougher than it looks - especially when a freight train is bearing down on you - but you just have to make a good pass. Carlson consistently does it, but too many of our other guys (Corvo) don't put it on the guy's tape, or just whip it around the boards, when they have an outlet.

Posted by: Timbo_1 | April 19, 2010 5:18 PM | Report abuse

You guys need to chill and relax.

The Habs are supposedly outplaying the Caps, and the Caps have been playing terrible. The results? All OT wins, separated by 1 goal each. Once the Caps begin to dominate as they did during the regular season, the Habs will become dust. Even outplaying the Caps, they can't pull off a regulation win. I just CAN'T see the Habs winning this series.

The President's Trophy 'curse' is a bunch of bull$#!&. We have NO reason to lose in the first round.

Posted by: ecaballero | April 19, 2010 5:25 PM | Report abuse


Wow, the negativism in these comments is more than a little disconcerting. Have the first two games made me less confident of a long playoff run? Yes, but I'm not ready to fold the tent like a lot of fans.
Posted by: Gould23 | April 19, 2010 4:32 PM |

Gould23, par for the course with these nervous nellies.

They forget we were just out of the playoffs just 3 years ago for 3/4 years prior!

Not like DC area has the brightest sports fans.
Oh well, that's the reasons they have no hair & drink beer.
Pseudo coaching & GMing does that to all those wetting wendies.

AMERICAN'T = Some Caps fans

Posted by: Rocc00 | April 19, 2010 5:53 PM | Report abuse

With the Caps, if you look at stretches this year when they have been off (or awful) its always been for 3 game stints. After the 14 game win streak OT Loss to Mtl, Loss to Ott, Loss to STL.....just after Christmas: loss to Car, Loss to LA, Loss to PHX- this time poor play since Boston season finale.

The confidence can make them look silly some nights, but if you can wear a team down this team will find a way to do it to Montreal.

Pay the dues early and reap rewards late. I rather lose game 1 or 3 than games 5 or 7.

Posted by: yesisaiditfirst | April 19, 2010 6:01 PM | Report abuse

didn't kostitsyn get the hat trick or is my memory too fuzzy?

Posted by: capscoach | April 19, 2010 6:09 PM | Report abuse

capscoach It is like the Sedins there are bothers on the same team. Andrei had the hattrick Sergei is the one sitting he has no points and is minus one.

Posted by: icehammer97 | April 19, 2010 6:22 PM | Report abuse

Other Kostitsyn. Montreal's got a spare.

Posted by: stevie_in_gp | April 19, 2010 6:24 PM | Report abuse

Anyone know if there is live chat tonight?

Posted by: icehammer97 | April 19, 2010 6:37 PM | Report abuse

About the current situation:

1) Agree with using Varly over Theo in Montreal due to the past history of the individuals against that team in that particular arena. That being said, I would probably prefer Theo against the Flyers, for example.

2) Line changes. Maybe Semin and Laich were separated since neither has scored lately. Semin's been shooting, just not scoring. I recall how someone had said on another blog that Semin had been "demoted" during Saturdays' game by being put on the line with Belanger and Flash while Fehr was moved to be with his original line mates. Of course, in reality, there is not a big difference in quality between our second and third line cast of characters. Flash and Laich have roughly similar production (20+ goals) but different skill sets. B Mo and Belanger are considered roughly equal.

Last year, it seemed to vary as to whether Semin would be with Flash or with Laich.

3) I hope Green's wrist is okay. It is believe that his earlier "healthy" scratch was due to having a bad wrist. It has me concerned due to the earlier issues Semin had had with his wrist.

Posted by: CapsFan75 | April 19, 2010 6:40 PM | Report abuse

ice, the Post has Geno scheduled to do a live Q&A when the game is over just like last Thursday rather than a game chat. Too bad.

Posted by: wocoliz | April 19, 2010 6:42 PM | Report abuse

Caps and Habs just skated onto the ice to this song:

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

Posted by: McBride33 | April 19, 2010 6:42 PM | Report abuse

Thanks wocoliz. I really do not like the Q&A it doesn't allow the fans to talk to each other. Please Washington Post bring back live In-Game chat!!!

Posted by: icehammer97 | April 19, 2010 6:48 PM | Report abuse

ice, I agree. I'd much rather have the real-time chat. Maybe when the Caps get back to VC.

LET'S GO CAPS!!!

Posted by: wocoliz | April 19, 2010 6:58 PM | Report abuse

Just heard on CSN...not sure if accurate:

Stecks out

Gordo in

Posted by: ralCapsFan | April 19, 2010 7:00 PM | Report abuse

Yeah, ITS THE PLAYOFFS, of course there should be a live chat. Newspapers can't get anything right. GO CAPS!

Posted by: LloydChristmas | April 19, 2010 7:00 PM | Report abuse

I would have liked them to score a goal in the first 2 minutes of that 4 minute power play.

Posted by: FloridaCapsFan | April 19, 2010 8:48 PM | Report abuse

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