Network News

X My Profile
View More Activity
On Twitter: kcarrera and PostSports  |  Facebook  |  E-mail alerts: Sports and Redskins  |  RSS

Brooks Laich on returning to the lineup

After taking a puck to the face and watching the Caps from the press box for four games while he recovered, winger Brooks Laich said he came away with a few observations: Nicklas Backstrom is "tremendous," Mike Green is a good skater and Alex Ovechkin plays "right through people." Here's more from Laich, including his thoughts on returning to the lineup tonight against Atlanta:

And here's Coach Bruce Boudreau on what Laich's return means for the Caps:

By Lindsay Applebaum  |  April 1, 2010; 2:03 PM ET
 
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Varlamov set to start against Thrashers
Next: Tonight's lineup: Thrashers at Caps

Comments

That is still one ugly looking eye, man that had to hurt!!

Posted by: PhilR | April 1, 2010 2:20 PM | Report abuse

brooks is the key to victory - put him in

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | April 1, 2010 2:24 PM | Report abuse

The threads are coming hot and heavy. From the last thread:

So Carlson could win a Stanley Cup this year (maybe even the Conn Smythe....I KNOW ITS A LONGSHOT), and then win Rookie of the Year next year!

GO AMERICAN HERO!!!

Posted by: wtf_e_fehr | April 1, 2010 2:23 PM |

Posted by: wtf_e_fehr | April 1, 2010 2:25 PM | Report abuse

brooks is the key to victory - put him in

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | April 1, 2010 2:24 PM | Report abuse

i'll say one thing, the game I thought we'd miss him the most we didn't miss him at all - that was against Pittsburgh. Because players like Flash, Fehr, and BMo all raised their games to such an extent. Too bad they can't play like that all the time. BMo seems to be more motivated than the other 2 to give an all-out effort on every shift.

Posted by: cstanton1 | April 1, 2010 2:53 PM | Report abuse

winger Brooks Laich said he came away with a few observations: Nicklas Backstrom is "tremendous," Mike Green is a good skater and Alex Ovechkin plays "right through people."

Pretty insightful. I didn't realize Greenie was a good skater. Thanks Laich! What else you got ? Corvo sucks on D? yeah we know that. Poti makes bad clearing passes? yep got that too. ShaMo is a wrecking ball on D? ditto!

i'm kidding. Laich has turned into one of my favorite players. He is in fact the new Konowalchuk.

Posted by: cstanton1 | April 1, 2010 2:59 PM | Report abuse

I hate to go against Brooks but I do think they have been mailing it in (possibly subconsciously). Further, I think it is just human nature to do so. Whether they want to admit it or not, playing hockey games that are essentially no more meaningful than a preseason game is difficult. In addition, they have been routinely facing opponents that are playing for their postseason lives. Motivation is a powerful factor in the outcome of any athletic endeavor.

Posted by: croftonpost | April 1, 2010 3:00 PM | Report abuse

Motivation is a powerful factor in the outcome of any athletic endeavor.

Posted by: croftonpost | April 1, 2010 3:00 PM

so true - it would be nice if pride was more of a motivating factor (which to me is absolutely hating to lose at anything at any time)

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | April 1, 2010 3:06 PM | Report abuse

Here is a good question...

Should the guys be trying to block shots at all cost?

Posted by: SA-Town | April 1, 2010 3:06 PM | Report abuse

no, i say run the opposite way from shots. Thats what I would do. That's how you get hurt! Only the Rangers block shots. Because they can't score any goals so they can't afford to let in even one.

Posted by: cstanton1 | April 1, 2010 3:13 PM | Report abuse

no, i say run the opposite way from shots. Thats what I would do. That's how you get hurt! Only the Rangers block shots. Because they can't score any goals so they can't afford to let in even one.

Posted by: cstanton1 | April 1, 2010 3:13 PM


@cstanton: Good one...ROFLMAO

Posted by: Rhino40 | April 1, 2010 3:19 PM | Report abuse

No shot blocking with swinging sticks. Ask a goalie how many goals are scored by d-men waving a stick at a puck.

Square up to the shooter and take away an angle, let the goalie have a sight line and less to protect of the net. Don't go down to block unless in desperation(like a bad rebound or odd man rush type of deal)

I have noticed more and more bad fundementals on team defence in the NHL over the past 5-10 years. Do they not play d in youth hockey anymore?

We used to practice with no sticks so we had to move our feet and play proper position. What happened to fundementals? That is why I get so teed at the stupid hooks and trips in transition by this team.

Posted by: cadlecreek1 | April 1, 2010 3:33 PM | Report abuse

Here is a good question...

Should the guys be trying to block shots at all cost?

Posted by: SA-Town | April 1, 2010 3:06 PM | Report abuse

yes... even if your nose ends up looking like Langway's

Posted by: joek443 | April 1, 2010 3:34 PM | Report abuse

Blocking shots when done right is great on the penalty kill - especially if the goalie might be out of position or obstructed view.

Generally though - if the goalie is stationary and can see the shot he will stop it. So block shots if you must, but rather than crowd the slot with bodies to deflect pucks in our own net I would rather they challenge the shooter and make him change his intention or rush his play.

The best moment of the Caps season was Nicklas Backstrom blocking shots from in close without a stick last month. This team does sometimes play timely defence and thats all I really ask for.

Posted by: yesisaiditfirst | April 1, 2010 3:38 PM | Report abuse

the best way to impede a PP is to put pressure on the point by the forwards and force the point men to handle pucks cleanly and make crisp passes. We put no pressure on the point, they can fumble the puck and still have time to set up.

Our PK issues are two fold. Some of the forwards do a better job than others of disrupting the point. And some of our D do a better job than others of knocking forwards off the puck along the endboards, and clearing that crease or jumping on rebounds

you get a PK unit that has Flash, Semin, Corvo, and Poti. And you may see some extended opportunities in our end. Sure, those 4 love to skate and if they get a break it could be a nice shortie attempt. But thats still a low % deal

Posted by: cstanton1 | April 1, 2010 3:44 PM | Report abuse

and before anyone catches me on that, yes Bruce actually played Semin and Flash on the same PK with Flash taking (losing) the faceoff.

Posted by: cstanton1 | April 1, 2010 3:45 PM | Report abuse

Less videos...more reporting.

Posted by: jincargo | April 1, 2010 3:46 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: malujoker | April 1, 2010 3:47 PM | Report abuse

the best defense for this team is offense... they can't just sit back even when they're on PK

they almost have to treat it like 5 on 5 and play aggressively... they have enough skill guys for it

Posted by: joek443 | April 1, 2010 3:59 PM | Report abuse

I heard the other night that Carlson had not played a regular shift in quite a while. (During that particular game) Was he injured? Being punished? Anyone know what the deal was?

Posted by: 1of9000 | April 1, 2010 4:09 PM | Report abuse

they can't just sit back even when they're on PK

they almost have to treat it like 5 on 5 and play aggressively... they have enough skill guys for it

Posted by: joek443 | April 1, 2010 3:59 PM | Report abuse

thats how they ended up giving up 2 2-on-1s to the Senators while we were on a freaking penalty kill.

you don't treat it like you have to score goals. You just work your tail off inside your blueline to bang bodies, get in passing lanes, force the point, and chip it out or skate it out if you have time. Trying to score goals on a PK as your primary form of defense is ridiculous. I can't tell you how many times I've seen our forwards or one of our offensive dmen clear our own zone only to realize the puck is still in the zone and now we're even more shorthanded.

Posted by: cstanton1 | April 1, 2010 4:31 PM | Report abuse

I heard the other night that Carlson had not played a regular shift in quite a while. (During that particular game) Was he injured? Being punished? Anyone know what the deal was?

Posted by: 1of9000 | April 1, 2010 4:09 PM | Report abuse

Carlson apparently got injured, unfortunately (nothing to punish him for from what I can see). They say it's not bad. Fortunately April 15th is a ways off.

Posted by: Sonyask | April 1, 2010 4:45 PM | Report abuse

"Put me in coach. I'm ready to play ... today"

-- Brooks Laich

Posted by: CapsFan75 | April 1, 2010 4:57 PM | Report abuse

capsfan75, love the reference! Different sport, but I TOTALLY agree with the sentiment.

LET'S GO, CAPS!!!

Posted by: wocoliz | April 1, 2010 5:06 PM | Report abuse

Laich has turned into one of my favorite players. He is in fact the new Konowalchuk.

Posted by: cstanton1 | April 1, 2010 2:59 PM

New and improved. Definitely better hands than Kono!

Posted by: igor_k17 | April 1, 2010 5:06 PM | Report abuse

the primary objective when you're on PK is kill it off... nobody is saying scoring a shortie is the main goal.

BUT the best way to achieve that goal is to keep the puck outta your zone as much as possible... meaning I don't like to see the forwards simply dumping the puck unless they need to make a change

they say Bobby Orr used to kill off a penalty all by himself... I want them to be agressive and keep the possesion of the puck as much as possible even when they're on PK

Posted by: joek443 | April 1, 2010 5:38 PM | Report abuse

CAPS win......Atlanta play-off hopes dashed.

Islanders break out of the Flyers strangelhold and win, when everyone is counting two points for the hated Flyers.

Carolina wins...and is teasing the die hard cane fans.

Boston Wins.....takes a grip at the play-offs...

these are my predictions.....

Posted by: Capsfannmiss | April 1, 2010 5:41 PM | Report abuse

they say Bobby Orr used to kill off a penalty all by himself... I want them to be agressive and keep the possesion of the puck as much as possible even when they're on PK

Posted by: joek443 | April 1, 2010 5:38 PM | Report abuse

Do you really want Corvo or Green trying to skate end to end with that puck thru a gauntlet of players? This team is fancy enough. I doubt they need any more encouragement to be more "offensive" in any way. Obviously if they have time they'll do more than just chip it out unless its at the end of a shift. All teams do that. But what I don't want to see is our forwards trying to race out with the puck as its jumping around on their stick only to have the point man block the puck back in. Seen that movie, hate it!

Posted by: cstanton1 | April 1, 2010 5:59 PM | Report abuse

Since everyone wants the Thrashers in the first round why don't we let them win tonight? hahah

where's the LIVE CHAT??!! ;(

Posted by: rachel216 | April 1, 2010 6:01 PM | Report abuse

I say Caps win 5-3. Even with Oduya on D, i have no idea how the Thrash is doing it. I think they're playing over their heads. Kovalchuk leaves, they get better. Gotta love that. Sometimes individual stars can take away from a team concept. Looks like Atl has really bonded together.

Posted by: cstanton1 | April 1, 2010 6:02 PM | Report abuse

In my playing career (admittedly in what I guess you'd call "beer leagues") , I have found that the best way to neutralize an opposing team's advantage in speed and/or skill is to control possession of the puck whenever possible (particularly on the PK). Controlling possession allows you to dictate the tempo of the game (and obviously the team without the puck can't score).

For the team that is advantaged in the skill/speed departments as the Caps are, this makes even more sense: you only need to ice the puck if 1) you're pinned down by the forecheck with no passing options or 2) you need to make a line change.

Posted by: Rhino40 | April 1, 2010 6:07 PM | Report abuse

rhino, how many times have you seen our players lose the puck in the neutral zone or trying to exit our zone? I know i've seen it enough times to want our players to simplify their games.

Look at the best PK teams in hockey. Do you know who they employ? players like Scott Nichol, Dubinsky, Begin and Paille in Boston -- these guys have one thing in common. They're not puck possession players but they are relentless forecheckers with speed. They forecheck the point, they win battles for pucks on the halfwall, and they chip it out. They don't go skating around looking to hold onto the puck. They keep it simple.

Posted by: cstanton1 | April 1, 2010 6:16 PM | Report abuse

I agree with cstanton1 on this one. I have seen on way too many occassions the Caps getting possession near the blue line with an opporunity to dump the puck down ice and they wait the extra second and turn the puck over.

I think you need to take the safe play while on the PK. Dumping it down allows for a line change, kills some time, and forces the opposing team to try to enter the zone again.

Posted by: sgm3 | April 1, 2010 6:19 PM | Report abuse

I think even with our skill, the key to us improving is to get our players to take away that time and space. When you have 9 players excluding the goalie on your side of the blueline, you should be able to put more pressure on the opposing PP than we do. For one, opposing teams enter our zone with ease. Two, once they're in there, they're allowed to set up the play. Its nuts. As quick as our team is, we should be able to impede their flow more effectively. We're just a passive PK team.
You just need a good faceoff guy, and a winger along with the center who is able to pressure the point and jam the boards on the halfwall. Then your D has got to be willing to muck it up, box out players so the goalie sees the puck etc.

Posted by: cstanton1 | April 1, 2010 6:20 PM | Report abuse

goda%*@ right SGM

no excuse to blow an easy clear. It doesn't happen very often. Maybe once a PP you get a chance to clear that puck and make em start over.

Posted by: cstanton1 | April 1, 2010 6:22 PM | Report abuse

do the Caps have that kinda relentless forecheckers??

NO, they don't... I know it may be impossible for you to believe it cstanton1 but there is MORE than one way to achieve the same goal

Posted by: joek443 | April 1, 2010 6:23 PM | Report abuse

even if the Caps win the Cup this year, I KNOW you will be saying they didn't do it the right way... LOL

Posted by: joek443 | April 1, 2010 6:25 PM | Report abuse

i hope someone puts colby armstrong thru the endboards tonight. The only Caps who ever seem to finish checks on that guy are ShaMo and Juice. No reason why we can't have 40 shots on goal, score 5, finish 30+ hits, and play average defense.

i'm also predicting Corvo doesn't suck as bad tonight. outtie

Posted by: cstanton1 | April 1, 2010 6:26 PM | Report abuse

NO, they don't... I know it may be impossible for you to believe it cstanton1 but there is MORE than one way to achieve the same goal

Posted by: joek443 | April 1, 2010 6:23 PM | Report abuse

great, clue me in. over the past few yrs, teams like the Sharks, Stars, Wild, Rangers have been among the league's better PK teams. Have they been doing it the way you described? fk no.

Posted by: cstanton1 | April 1, 2010 6:29 PM | Report abuse

why the heck would the Caps wanna follow their examples? NONE of those teams won the Cup recently

and I'm not the great hockey expert who would take Scott Stevens over Gretzky... YOU ARE

I bet your perfect hockey team would include 20 hitters like Stevens and basically knock out every player on the other team and win the game that way... LOL

Posted by: joek443 | April 1, 2010 6:36 PM | Report abuse

even if the Caps win the Cup this year, I KNOW you will be saying they didn't do it the right way... LOL

Posted by: joek443 | April 1, 2010 6:25 PM | Report abuse

i can see why you'd think that. But I promise I won't. Reason being, there is no way on god's green earth this team wins the Cup playing the way they currently do. If they amend their style, anything is possible. Thats how the Lightning won against Calgary. They had to change their system up. That entire reg season they played a pretty soft defensive style. But they somehow pulled it together and changed how they did things in the playoffs. I would've lost money that yr because I would've bet against them going all the way.

but either way, i promise i will not say that.

Posted by: cstanton1 | April 1, 2010 6:39 PM | Report abuse

why the heck would the Caps wanna follow their examples? NONE of those teams won the Cup recently

and I'm not the great hockey expert who would take Scott Stevens over Gretzky... YOU ARE

I bet your perfect hockey team would include 20 hitters like Stevens and basically knock out every player on the other team and win the game that way... LOL

Posted by: joek443 | April 1, 2010 6:36 PM | Report abuse

why do you take every discussion and turn it into some condescending post filled with LOLs? its juvenile and counter-productive.

and frankly, how do you think the Devils won the Cup in their first go around? Great goaltending, one or two skill players, and a lot of grinding and tight defense. So yeah, it CAN be done that way as well. But it can't be done without playing great defensive hockey, period.

Posted by: cstanton1 | April 1, 2010 6:42 PM | Report abuse

and you know Stevens was much more than just a hitter, right? You don't go to all-star games, and captain teams to Stanley Cups if you're just a hitter. You make him sound like Brian Marchment. Again proving you don't your elbow from your ahole.

Posted by: cstanton1 | April 1, 2010 6:44 PM | Report abuse

1. Steven NEVER won a Norris Trophy

2. during his era, at best he's number 3 d-man... behind Ray Bourque and Chris Chelios

Posted by: joek443 | April 1, 2010 6:54 PM | Report abuse

Steven = Stevens

Posted by: joek443 | April 1, 2010 6:55 PM | Report abuse

to say you would rather have Stevens than Gretzky is all anyone needs to know where you're coming from - proving once again you have no idea what the heck you're talking about

Posted by: joek443 | April 1, 2010 6:58 PM | Report abuse

@cstanton1: Düüüde, you must chill!

To clarify, I am not saying that our PK unit should always be looking for the shorthanded opportunity, as much fun as that is to watch (when it works).

I'm saying that if WE get possession during a PK, maintain spacing and movement, make good passes, and basically play "keep away" whenever possible regardless of which zone we're in, then the opposing power play turns out to be not much of a power play at all.

The enemy generally can't score if they don't have the puck. Even I know this.

OK, OK, I get it, already: Scott Stevens is God...


LOL.
LOL.
LOL.

Posted by: Rhino40 | April 1, 2010 7:03 PM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

 
 
RSS Feed
Subscribe to The Post

© 2010 The Washington Post Company