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Caps fans mob Semyon Varlamov

Asked about the Caps' increasingly murky goaltending situation, Coach Bruce Boudreau wouldn't name his starter for tomorrow. But I'm hearing he's going to go with Jose Theodore instead of sticking with Semyon Varlamov, who was occasionally outstanding in a 2-1 win over Atlanta last night.

"It's tough to manage both of them when you think you have two good ones," Boudreau said. "Managing all egos is tough. It's not something where you say, 'This is the way I'm doing it.' It's a day-by-day thing in my world, anyway."

Asked whether he thinks a goalie controversy could divide the dressing room, Boudreau said: "I haven't seen that before. The players want to win, and whoever they think can do the better job someone they'll rally around."

*Here's a video I took of Varlamov getting mobbed by fans, who moments earlier chanted, "We want Varly!" When Varlamov emerged from the dressing room, they erupted in cheers.

As I mentioned earlier, today's practice was lightly attended. But there was plenty of injury news.

Here's a quick rundown:

  • Defenseman John Carlson (upper body) did not skate. But Coach Bruce Boudreau said he's "feeling a lot better today" and will skate tomorrow.
  • Brendan Morrison (groin) also will skate tomorrow.
  • Scott Walker practiced again and could, according to Boudreau, play next early week.
  • Boyd Gordon (back) skated on his own and "is feeling great," according to Boudreau. The checking line center will be reevaluated next week.
  • Quintin Laing (knee bruise) skated and said he's ready to return.
  • Boudreau also said he expects Milan Jurcina to begin skating next week. Still won't be ready for the start of the playoffs. Might be healthy by the end of the first round.

I've got one more video on the way. It's Brooks Laich talking about the significance of Thursday's win. Check back later.

By Tarik El-Bashir  |  April 2, 2010; 2:18 PM ET
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Jason Chimera looking forward to Columbus return
Next: Laich on importance of beating Atlanta


If San Jose loses tonight and we win tomorrow we get the presidents trophY right????

Posted by: billd2 | April 2, 2010 2:22 PM | Report abuse

awwww sweet Varly!! ;)

billd2: Correct!!!! 3 is our magic number..

Posted by: rachel216 | April 2, 2010 2:26 PM | Report abuse

Don't think the Caps even have to win, just go to OT. (Or does a "tie" bring the Blackhawks back into play? I'm not clear on President's Trophy tiebreaks.)

Posted by: stevie_in_gp | April 2, 2010 2:29 PM | Report abuse

Varly did the same during the season ticket holder event at six flags. He didnt ride any rides, just signed autographs ALL day while in the middle of a mob, instead of just during the designated time slot. Got my hat signed and a pic with him.


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

caps have 112 pts
caps win = 114
caps ot/so loss = 113

sj has 104 with 5 games left
max sj pts = 114
sj loss = max 112
sj ot/so loss = max 113

caps win (114) > sj loss (max 112) or sj ot/so loss (max 113)

caps ot/so loss (113) > sj loss (max 112)

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | April 2, 2010 2:56 PM | Report abuse

chi max pts = 113 (101 + 6 games x 2pts)
if caps win chi can't catch up
if caps ot/so loss - chi must win all 6 and caps must loss last 4 games to tie - if this happens chi would win based on greater number of wins 53 to 50
any tie with sj would also result in sj winning based on number of wins

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | April 2, 2010 3:03 PM | Report abuse

Don't think the Caps even have to win, just go to OT. (Or does a "tie" bring the Blackhawks back into play? I'm not clear on President's Trophy tiebreaks.)

Posted by: stevie_in_gp | April 2, 2010 2:29 PM | Report abuse

Tiebreaks are tiebreaks; most wins is first (or, alternatively, the one with the fewest OTL's wins in the case of a pts tie).

We have 112 points. The most the Sharks can get is 114 and the most the Hawks can get is 113. Both teams have the tiebreak over the Cap with fewer OTLs, so 115 wins us the Trophy if the others win out the season (which is unlikely).

All of this is, of course, beside the point. We are going to win the President's Trophy and it is only going to be a minor milestone.

Posted by: Sonyask | April 2, 2010 3:04 PM | Report abuse

From a previous fanohock post

"Not sure how Caron will do but he's not new to the NHL. He played for the Pens when they were throwing games to get top picks after the 2003, 04, and 06 seasons. Due to those "down" years that some experts say were tanked on purpose resulted in:

- 2003 #1 overall pick Fleury
- 2004 #2 overall pick Malkin
- 2005 #1 overall pick Crosby
- 2006 #2 overall pick Jordon Staal"

Don't really see a huge difference in how the pens and caps have gotten where they are today- Both dumped Jagr and other high salaries to get "bad" before they got "good"-
Pens had top 5 picks in 03, 04, 06
Caps had top 5 picks in 04, 06, 07

05 was the "Crosby Sweepstakes" and Pens had a better chance at a high draft position based on a lack of recent playoff appearances and no previous #1 picks (They traded up to get Fleury)

Posted by: jp426 | April 2, 2010 3:04 PM | Report abuse

must loss last 4 games = must lose last 4 games

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | April 2, 2010 3:06 PM | Report abuse

Don't think the Caps even have to win, just go to OT. (Or does a "tie" bring the Blackhawks back into play? I'm not clear on President's Trophy tiebreaks.)

Posted by: stevie_in_gp | April 2, 2010 2:29 PM


Hawks are technically still in play:

Race for the NHL President's Trophy:
Caps: 112 (5 games left)
Sharks: 104 (5 games left)
Hawks: 101 (6 games left)

Hawks have the first tiebreak on us (less OTL) and they can't catch up to our OTL without losing in total points. SJ also has the first tiebreak currently (less OTL) but if they caught up in OTL, we have the tiebreak (split head to head, goal differential is ours).

If the Caps lose all their games in regulation, and SJ loses two games in OT (but wins out) we beat them in tiebreaks. This is very unlikely to happen for a whole slew of reasons.

To sum up, the caps need to gain 3 points on SJ and 2 points on Chicago between now and the end of the season - doesn't matter how.

Posted by: Raber | April 2, 2010 3:12 PM | Report abuse

I hope BB gives Theo more a chance this year. Honestly, it's his net, he has earned it. I will be pissed if Theo has one bad game, then BB pulls him again for the rest of the playoffs. It seems Varly for some reason, has more slack to have bad games where as Theo has one bad game, and he moves way down.

Posted by: theAnswerIs42 | April 2, 2010 3:21 PM | Report abuse

Theo looked like one big ole piece of swiss cheese in the first game against the Rangers last year and deserved to be pulled... you can't wait in the playoffs and as it turned out they barely beat the Rangers in 7 even with two shutouts by Varly. they probably would've lost in 6 with Theo.

I don't trust small goalies in the playoffs and I don't think BB does either.

Posted by: joek443 | April 2, 2010 3:29 PM | Report abuse

Not sure if this was mentioned previously, but Armstrong was suspended two games. That means we'll see him when Atlanta plays us again before the end of the season.

Posted by: Raber | April 2, 2010 3:40 PM | Report abuse

CSN reports Armstrong gets a 2 game suspension for the hit on Perreault.

Posted by: griz0615 | April 2, 2010 3:41 PM | Report abuse

Cool, so I was right: as long as the Sharks lose tomorrow (step 1 in billd's hypothetical), Caps just have to go to OT (1 loser point) to put away SJ.

However, just getting 1 pt Saturday would keep Chicago in play as they could still get 113 pts and beat out the Caps with fewer OTLs.

Certainly understand that the "worst-case" scenarios for the Caps are all damn unlikely.

Thank you all for the clarification (not that anyone's still on this thread).

Posted by: stevie_in_gp | April 2, 2010 4:42 PM | Report abuse

I'd like to see Theo get a fair chance, and I think he's still in the lead. But we have two good goalies: the question is, does Theo get shaken up by the competition?

I do think BB is a Varlamov believer and I have to trust his judgment. At no point has there been any serious move to bring Neuvwirth back into the picture this year...

Posted by: RedLitYogi | April 2, 2010 5:01 PM | Report abuse

nice vid, Tarik; production was top notch.

Posted by: Hattrik | April 2, 2010 5:40 PM | Report abuse

"We want Varly!" - ha ha haa. I see Varlamov sure has a posse.

While I was in DC for few days for training last year, I went to Kettler and watched alot of Caps practice hoping that I'd get Varlamov sign his rookie card. Never got a chance to meet Varlamov so I sent his RC to Kettler before I left DC. And few weeks later Varlamov signed the card and sent it back to Japan. Thanks Varly!

Posted by: arakakij | April 2, 2010 10:07 PM | Report abuse

Varly getting "mobbed"? How about Varly being politely 'greeted' by fans.

Posted by: redskinsux | April 3, 2010 12:05 AM | Report abuse

Weren't they just giving him a very undeserving bronx cheer not long ago?

Posted by: uhdorablexloser | April 3, 2010 12:17 AM | Report abuse

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