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Caps trade off day for hard practice

Bruce Boudreau had toyed with the idea of giving his players the day off in sunny Los Angeles today. But apparently Wednesday's 5-2 loss in San Jose made the coach have a change of heart.

Everyone is on the ice for practice at Toyota Sports Center, the Kings' practice rink in El Segundo, and Boudreau is skating his players hard.

The lines, meantime, have a different look to them as Boudreau seeks to snap his team out of a two-game funk in which they've been outscored 5-0 in the first period.

Here's what Boudreau's revamped forward combos look like:

Ovechkin-Backstrom-Semin
Fleischmann-Morrison-Bradley
Chimera-Laich-Knuble
Laing-Gordon/Steckel-Fehr

The D pairings looked unchanged.

The Caps are practicing the length of the ice -- at full speed. The focus right now appears systems-related, with Boudreau barking out instructions and occasionally calling everyone over to the dry-erase board to diagram proper positioning.

Needless to say, Boudreau doesn't look (or sound) happy.

I've got to crank out a story for tomorrow's Post and report a story for Saturday's. So you may not hear from me again for a bit. But hang in there, I hope to have an update later.

By Tarik El-Bashir  |  December 31, 2009; 2:44 PM ET
 | Tags: Los Angeles Kings  
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Next: Boudreau talks tough

Comments

i love Bradley, but 2nd line? and fehr on the 4th?

seems odd.

Posted by: Bike2work | December 31, 2009 2:50 PM | Report abuse

whatever happened to the notion of

OV-Backstrom-Knuble
Semin-Morrisonn-Laich

both of those have a distributor, sniper, and grind it out guy in front of net.

Posted by: carsonspence | December 31, 2009 2:58 PM | Report abuse

sweet: Brads on 2nd line.

Posted by: doughless | December 31, 2009 3:05 PM | Report abuse

I would like the Caps to recall Perrault nd place him as the 3rd line center while moving Laich back to wing on one of the top 3 lines. Then move Chimera to the 4th line with Steckel and Bradley and sit Laing.

While I love the effort Laing gives he just doesn't seem to make much of an impact in games. He isn't a very good forechecker and his great ability to block shots isn't seen too often anymore.

Posted by: sgm3 | December 31, 2009 3:05 PM | Report abuse

whatever happened to the notion of

OV-Backstrom-Knuble
Semin-Morrisonn-Laich

both of those have a distributor, sniper, and grind it out guy in front of net.


Posted by: carsonspence | December 31, 2009 2:58 PM | Report abuse

+1. I think Bruce got away from it when Knuble got hurt. Hopefully he comes back to it.

Posted by: zyvo23 | December 31, 2009 3:07 PM | Report abuse

Fehr, since he picked up his scoring, has been playing worse away from the puck. I have no problem with him being demoted. Sometimes players get a little full of themselves and forget what brought them success to begin with. Fehr's play has been dropping the last several games.

Brads is Bruce's "go-to" guy to jumpstart his eammates. He'll bump Brads up a line during a game if he feels his skill players need a fire lit under their butts.

Posted by: cstanton1 | December 31, 2009 3:14 PM | Report abuse

Hard practice = good. And they better have a boring NYE. No strippers.

They gotta right the ship. I expect a motorboating win Saturday in LA.

Playtime is over. Excuses are over. Remind me why you're a top-tier team in the league.

Posted by: CF11555 | December 31, 2009 3:15 PM | Report abuse

Last 10 games...

Laich 1G 3A -5 2PPP
Morrison 1G 1A +0 1PPP
Flash 4G 3A -2 2PPP
Knuble 2G 2A -5 0PPP
Fehr 1G 3A +1 0PPP

Off all these players which represent our secondary scoring, E.Fehr plays the fewest minutes and plays the least amount of PP minutes.

Yet, he remains no worse, and in comparison to B.Mo, Laich and Knuble has been better the past 10 games, given time played/results offensively and defensive responsibility.

Moving him to the 4th line is ridiculous. It will only hamper his progress. Matt Bradley on the 2nd line is a joke.

Posted by: JSchon | December 31, 2009 3:33 PM | Report abuse

There is way too much talent on this team and in the system, allegedly, for Matt Bradley to be on the second line, or for Boyd Gordon to even be in the 12.

The captain ought to step up and say something.

Oh ... wait ...

Posted by: writered21 | December 31, 2009 3:39 PM | Report abuse

CF11555....No strippers?? Dude, thats harsh.

Posted by: hockeyguy44 | December 31, 2009 3:47 PM | Report abuse

The captain ought to step up and say something.

Oh ... wait ...

Posted by: writered21 | December 31, 2009 3:39 PM |

lol...yeah because it's common practice for the captain to tell the coach his lines suck. get real.

Posted by: richmondphil | December 31, 2009 3:53 PM | Report abuse

It's funny watching people try to dig for reasons as to why we lost. They played 2 pretty bad games...good effort last night, but they got frustrated early on and there was no way they were coming out of a 3-0 hole against the Sharks.

It had nothing to do with lack of hitting, the trade of Clark, or any of that.

82 games in a season, they aren't going to be on every night.

Posted by: richmondphil | December 31, 2009 3:55 PM | Report abuse

@hockeyguy44

Strippers motivate those who are unwordly. Back in the day I dated a few strippers and their motto was "guy's come in her to get laid, but end up leaving fuxed!" They prided themselves on sucking every penny out of every pocket in the room.

Strippers are nothing but leaches that are easy on the eyes.

Posted by: FLDave | December 31, 2009 4:04 PM | Report abuse

I hope Fehr isn't really going to be on the 4th line. He has been back checking, working the boards, crashing the net and working the puck. He has been on of the most consistant on the team.

Richmondphil

I disagree, the trade does have a short term affect. It is a crappy excuse, but losing close teamates and juggling lines due to the new player and loss of players does mess with the line. They aren't as familiar with the new line mates positioning on the ice. Many of the best lines in hockey history had years playing together. Case in point when B MO was in Vancouver his line produced.

Posted by: Caps4Life1 | December 31, 2009 4:06 PM | Report abuse

I don't think Bradley was promoted as much as Fleischmann & Morrison were demoted. Chimera, Laich and Knuble all had a better game than the "second" line.

Posted by: livefeed | December 31, 2009 4:08 PM | Report abuse

It is a crappy excuse

Posted by: Caps4Life1 | December 31, 2009 4:06 PM |

Well that was easy, huh?

Posted by: richmondphil | December 31, 2009 4:10 PM | Report abuse

Knock on wood, but I think these guys usually respond well after a punishing practice...just hope the LA night life doesn't get the best of em!

Posted by: capscoach | December 31, 2009 4:11 PM | Report abuse

Also, BMo was never with Naslund and Big Bert until that year. So using him was a bad example.

I am quite aware that chemistry is a good thing, but you are telling me because we added 1 new guy (who played great on his shifts) to 1 line..THAT'S a main reason why they lost? That's a joke.

Posted by: richmondphil | December 31, 2009 4:13 PM | Report abuse

wow

Posted by: wendel2 | December 31, 2009 4:13 PM | Report abuse

Granted no team is going to win 82 straight games, but I think everyone expected a great effort last night after the Hurricanes debacle. Yes they played okay the 2nd and 3rd, but how do you come out like that in the 1st (especially when you're playing one of the leagues best teams)? I'm just throwing this out there... but I could see how many team members might feel uneasy about GMGM trading them. I think alot of these guys think they as a unit have built something good here, and now might feel like they too may be dumped before their chance at a cup. Team morale can be a tricky thing, and they are bound to hear the rumors of a deal being made for a experienced solid defenseman. The Clark/Jurcina trade was probably good on paper, but how does it personally affect the boys who remain?

Posted by: kcbrichmond | December 31, 2009 4:14 PM | Report abuse

Also, say what you guys want, Boyle more than proved why he was picked up over Green last night.

Green played a decent game..hitting two posts... but he was obviously not on Boyle's level.

Posted by: richmondphil | December 31, 2009 4:15 PM | Report abuse

@sgm3 Laing takes one in the face....breaks his jaw .....and u figure its time to kick him to the curb cause he aint blocking shots.....do u watch the games or just make these observations after a couple days of hard drinking

Posted by: wendel2 | December 31, 2009 4:18 PM | Report abuse

I'm not sure I agree with Fehr being sent to the 4th line. He's been more productive than many of our other people. Granted, Bruce had to do something since things have not worked out at all, as of late.

I figure they're leaving Semin on the first line since Ovi and Backstrom seem to produce better when he's there than when anyone else is there (even if it hasn't showed up on the score sheet.)

In my humble opinion, Fehr produces better when he's on the second line than anywhere else. While Bradley is very productive on the score sheet for a 4th liner, I would rather see Fehr there. The main thing about Fehr on the 4th line is at least the fourth line can skate a good amount of minutes for a fourth line.

Swap Bradley and Fehr and I would like these lines a lot. I've noticed that Fehr has his goal scoring streaks when he's on the second line, both last year and this year. I'm part of the "Fehr should be our 2nd line RW" lobby.

Posted by: CapsFan75 | December 31, 2009 4:20 PM | Report abuse

The Clark/Jurcina trade was probably good on paper, but how does it personally affect the boys who remain?

Posted by: kcbrichmond | December 31, 2009 4:14 PM |

If it is affecting them to the point of the effort given against CAR and the 1st period against SJS, then they shouldn't be professional hockey players.


Seriously..you guys are okay with riding off these performances because of the trade that happened? You are going to ignore the horrible defensive coverage last night...or the horrible all-around showing Monday night? That is absurd.

"Oh, it's okay because a trade happened and it affected their play. It's okay that they played like utter sh*t because there was "locker room turmoil". Give me a break.

Posted by: richmondphil | December 31, 2009 4:22 PM | Report abuse

Brads gives more effort on a nightly basis than the $6 million man. if Semin had half his tenacity he would hoist the Hart Trophy.

Posted by: doughless | December 31, 2009 4:26 PM | Report abuse

What I'm thinking: we number the lines in this organization because it's what we're used to doing.

Here's what we *really* have:

scoring line A
scoring line B
checking line
energy line

It's not 1st-2nd-3rd-4th. Not really. They do need to get their butts kicked from one end of the ice to the other, and snap out of the funk, but I'm not about to toss in the towel on a couple of bad performances. If I did that, I'd've tossed it in months ago.

Posted by: irockthered | December 31, 2009 4:27 PM | Report abuse

@richmondphil - First off, it's "writing off," not "riding off," and second - I'll give them a Mulligan for the Carolina game, but not for last night. I only watched the first frame, so I'm not really in a position to comment on the game last night, though, so I'll leave it at that.

Posted by: irockthered | December 31, 2009 4:29 PM | Report abuse

More Semin bashing..did you even watch him last night? He was giving more effort than half the guys on the ice, including the Sharks.

Sometimes people just swallow the "status quo" without actually paying any attention.

Posted by: richmondphil | December 31, 2009 4:30 PM | Report abuse

I'll give them a Mulligan for the Carolina game, but not for last night. I only watched the first frame, so I'm not really in a position to comment on the game last night, though, so I'll leave it at that.

Posted by: irockthered | December 31, 2009 4:29 PM |

I'm not sure what you mean at all. You'll excuse their play against CAR for...?

Not for the trade, I am hoping. You know better than that...

Posted by: richmondphil | December 31, 2009 4:32 PM | Report abuse

I agree with richmondphil.

People are looking to make a connection for the sake of making a connection.

Whatever impact that trade had phsycologically and chemistry-wise was minimal and had little to nothing to do with two crappy performances.

What was the excuse when we lost to the Islanders?

How about Toronto a couple of weeks ago? Oh, it was tough travel day, right? Then how do you explain us having our most dominating first period of this season against them? Toronto was extremely lucky we weren't up 5-0 after one.

How about when we got shutout by Buffalo? Clark and Jurcina were still on the team.

How about all those horrible games we played toward the end of last season, including a couple against Carolina and one against a struggling Colorado team? Clark and Jurcina were still Caps at the time.

We had a strong start to the season but we've had our share of bad games, including a couple that we managed to win. Our defense was playing well recently but, overall, we haven't been a good defensive team in years. The odds were that games like this were going to happen. It's just a coincidence that they happened right after the trade.

When the Caps start reeling off wins again, I assume these mysterious "effects of the trade" will have suddenly been overcome according to those claiming it's the cause of our current poor play.

I think a more logical explanation for the recent crap play was overconfidence after thumping Buffalo and New Jersey. The Caps need to get back to the basics and they will.

Posted by: tmac2yao | December 31, 2009 4:41 PM | Report abuse

@Lindsay - Off topic, but did you read the Sally Jenkins column in today's Post? She condones the behavior of the red-neck Texas football coach who punished his player for not practicing when he was recovering from a concussion. Shouldn't your editors have caught this? Sally's views are consistently 180 degrees off-track, but today's column is outrageous IMO. Do her colleagues view her as having a job at the WP only because of who her dad was?

Posted by: zmega | December 31, 2009 4:42 PM | Report abuse

It is a crappy excuse

Posted by: Caps4Life1 | December 31, 2009 4:06 PM |

Well that was easy, huh?

Crappy but true. You took that out of context. It is a valid excuse.

Posted by: Caps4Life1 | December 31, 2009 4:45 PM | Report abuse

Ovechkin is a cancer!!!

That makes as much sense as most of the posts here today. Get a grip everyone, one loss to a top tier team should not be taken so seriously.

Posted by: FLDave | December 31, 2009 4:45 PM | Report abuse

@richmondphil

For a change, people have not been savaging Semin too badly for last night.

Granted he hasn't scored (and seems to be having tough luck).

He may have gotten injured in the Carolina game.

Posted by: CapsFan75 | December 31, 2009 4:46 PM | Report abuse

@wendel2

Seriously? If that's your argument for playing Laing then it is pretty weak. I like Laing and respect how hard he plays. However, if he is not one of the top 12 forwards on the team you do not play him just because he got hit in the face with a puck.

I would understand if he is a little more hesitant to block shots after getting hit in the face. However, if Laing isn't blocking shots like a mad man then he doesn't provide much benefit to the team.

If there is a suitable replacement, I suggested moving Perrault to 3rd line center, moving Laich back to wing and Chimera to line 4, then you do that. I like Laing but someone will have to sit if that happened.

If you believe the lines are better how they are now, that is fine. But I think my suggestion is a very reasonable alternative to the present lines.

Posted by: sgm3 | December 31, 2009 4:49 PM | Report abuse

tmac2yao

The trade reasoning is a valid point. It does effect the players emotionally, which in turn affects the on ice product. I never said it was why they lost any game. It just is a factor. There team bad play and the great game the other teams have played is why they lost. Everyone needs to stop reading so deeply into comments. They are personal opinions not gospel.

It seems like a lot of posters just never played a sport when a teammate was lost.

Posted by: Caps4Life1 | December 31, 2009 4:50 PM | Report abuse

Crappy but true. You took that out of context. It is a valid excuse.

Posted by: Caps4Life1 | December 31, 2009 4:45 PM |

And I acknowledged that it's an excuse to use. But as tmac said, to try to connect that it had such an impact on the team is a huge stretch.

Also, Valid excuses =/= Good excuses.

Posted by: richmondphil | December 31, 2009 4:51 PM | Report abuse

The trade reasoning is a valid point. It does effect the players emotionally, which in turn affects the on ice product. I never said it was why they lost any game. It just is a factor. There team bad play and the great game the other teams have played is why they lost. Everyone needs to stop reading so deeply into comments. They are personal opinions not gospel.

It seems like a lot of posters just never played a sport when a teammate was lost.

Posted by: Caps4Life1 | December 31, 2009 4:50 PM |
Um..you responded to me. Who exactly is digging into other people's opinions?

No need for these tongue-in-cheek personal shots...

Posted by: richmondphil | December 31, 2009 4:54 PM | Report abuse

@irockthered

I'd give the Caps a mulligan for last night too. They played better in the 2nd and 3rd period, but not well and not at all what they are capable of. Be glad you were otherwise occupied.

In general:
As I caught up on this thread I find it ironic that on the one hand many feel that the Caps have lost their way with the trade but on the other many feel that the bad game shows that we have to revamp our entire defensive system and get rid of guys, or in other words trade them. IMO I think both are overreactions.

Realistically it's one game out of 82. All teams have slides. The Sharks had one earlier in the season. And although the Caps didn't play very well or consistently or in sync last night, I think tweaking is all that's needed, starting with redoing the lines and having a hard practice--practicing as Tarik noted the systems. IMHO of course.

These guys are professionals. Many have experienced being traded before. Maybe the trade puts the defense on yellow alert and I wouldn't be in the least bit surprised if GMGM didn't make more moves before playoffs. But that's part of the business, and I have trouble imagining them still being upset by the trade.

I do hope the slide is brief though and I am looking forward to our next game. The Caps are still great to me.

Posted by: Capsyoungguns | December 31, 2009 4:58 PM | Report abuse

Where were you hiding, Tarik?

BB was quite pleasant with the fans after practice, and Nicky and Green signed my Team Russia sweater on the way to the bus.

Posted by: OvechkinFan92801 | December 31, 2009 5:02 PM | Report abuse

a few things that have shocked me in the past 24 hours.

1 - Semin blocked a shot. Nearly spit my beer out - I doubt that will happen again anytime soon.

2 - Gordo was a healthy scratch and Erskine got a sweater. I love QL but the Sharks have a lot of offense and win the draws. Gordo can play the wing and has a great win %.

3- I actually agree with JSchon's assesment. Fehr to the 4th and Bradley to 2 doesn't sound right. Bradley may be one of the fastest sk8trs on the team, but he has brix for hands.

4- No Strippers?? That's a little harsh considering it's NYE and we're in 2nd in the East. Maybe it'll get them going....

Posted by: pch49 | December 31, 2009 5:05 PM | Report abuse

@OvechkinFan92801

That's very cool--getting their signatures. Hope they looked satisfied with a solid practice!

Posted by: Capsyoungguns | December 31, 2009 5:08 PM | Report abuse

Bradley has far better hands than most 3/4 liners. He's not exactly Kovalev out there, but give the guy a little bit of credit. :)

Posted by: richmondphil | December 31, 2009 5:08 PM | Report abuse

@pch49

You forgot Ovi dropping the gloves. I nearly fell out of my chair.

Posted by: Capsyoungguns | December 31, 2009 5:10 PM | Report abuse

During a stoppage in play 9:25 into the second period, referee Dan Marouelli had a long conversation at the Penguins’ bench with head coach Dan Bylsma and then another talk with Crosby. Then, he came over to the Devils’ and spoke briefly with Lemaire. After Marouelli left, Lemaire smiled.

According to one Devils’ player, Marouelli said the Penguins were complaining about the penalties.

“[Marouelli] said they were complaining that we didn’t have any penalties,” the player said. “[Marouelli] said we were behaving well and hadn’t done anything wrong.”

_________________________________
I defend Crosby/Pens more times than I really should be, but if ONE thing is true about them, they are a bunch of whiners.

Posted by: richmondphil | December 31, 2009 5:12 PM | Report abuse

maybe true, but the 2nd line?

I love Bradley's game but he is much more effective on the forecheck and battling in the corners/behind the net.

I could be wront but with Flash/Mo I suspect he'll either be offsides or a little behind the play.

I'd love to see Bruce put the Hershey line back together. Flash/Brooks/Fehr - they seem to generate a lot of offense...

Posted by: pch49 | December 31, 2009 5:15 PM | Report abuse

I defend Crosby/Pens more times than I really should be, but if ONE thing is true about them, they are a bunch of whiners.

Posted by: richmondphil | December 31, 2009 5:12 PM | Report abuse

Amen brother. So true.

Posted by: pch49 | December 31, 2009 5:17 PM | Report abuse

Oh, I agree with you on all that. I was just saying that Bradley has some pretty slick hands for being a mucker/grinder type of guy.

Remember that SH breakaway in the playoffs last year? When he flipped a backhander over Lundy's glove...surprised me, haha.

Posted by: richmondphil | December 31, 2009 5:18 PM | Report abuse

The start was tentative in SJ and right now that Sharks team is the hot team. The first Pavelski goal sort of broke the Caps back. Before that goalie Neuvirth looked lucky.

Anyway I knew those lines with both Knuble and Morrison on #1 line wouldn't work. Probably not a good time to mess with lines radically when going in to play an elite team that is on a winning streak like the Sharks are.

Unfortunately, looking at the lines that they are "testing" for the Kings game there may be some changes yet. Knuble needs to be on one with Backstrom and OV. Last night Knuble and Chimera played pretty good. The blind cross ice passes by OV are what killed us - and Green overcompensating for not making the Olympics? - Responsible for the penalty shots?

Good teams do lose games. At this time of the season there are a lot of teams that do not stay focused and lose. Pittsburgh is going through the same thing right now - not being able to score.

It is hard to win every game when every other opponent is gauging their season based on how they stack up against the Caps. Opponents do not let the Caps take nights off. Columbus might be able to get away with it - but any team with OV on it will not get that break.

Posted by: yesisaiditfirst | December 31, 2009 5:21 PM | Report abuse

@richmondphil

Too funny! Thanks for that tidbit.

Although I freely admit to hating the Pens and think they doth complain too much, that doesn't mean I don't have enormous respect for their talent. I do think the road to the Cup could easily go through the Pens. But it's nice to read that they are getting all the penalties for a change. Goes to show ALL elite teams have baaad penalty-laden games sometimes.

Posted by: Capsyoungguns | December 31, 2009 5:21 PM | Report abuse

Oh, I agree with you on all that. I was just saying that Bradley has some pretty slick hands for being a mucker/grinder type of guy.

Remember that SH breakaway in the playoffs last year? When he flipped a backhander over Lundy's glove...surprised me, haha.

Posted by: richmondphil | December 31, 2009 5:18 PM | Report abuse

totally forgot about that - good call. I think he had a game winning shootout goal also.

I stand corrected.

Posted by: pch49 | December 31, 2009 5:22 PM | Report abuse

I'd be pissed too after that performance.

Posted by: grahamdumas | December 31, 2009 5:24 PM | Report abuse

Happy New Years to Caps fans everywhere especially Canada

Posted by: wendel2 | December 31, 2009 5:25 PM | Report abuse

@Hershey people

How is Osala doing?

Posted by: richmondphil | December 31, 2009 5:34 PM | Report abuse

@tmac2yao

I'm sure there were a number of factors that have contributed to the Caps' lousy play, as of late. The trade, for one thing, probably did affect the guys emotionally to some degree.

Maybe overconfidence after beating Buffalo and NJ contributed. San Jose was certainly hot, which didn't help. And Neuvy seems to freak out on penalty shots for some reason.

The ship will probably be righted. Hopefully, on Saturday, if not, it will happen next week. I'll admit they had a awful track record against the Kings last year so my confidence for that game is not super high.

Posted by: CapsFan75 | December 31, 2009 6:37 PM | Report abuse

Just in case anyone cares that hasn't seen this... Nice decade in review top ten hockey plays, courtesy of tsn. I'm not so good at this embed link stuff, so sorry for the cut and paste.

http://watch.tsn.ca/nhl/clip250189#clip250189

Posted by: stuffedinvader | December 31, 2009 6:39 PM | Report abuse

I thought the Chimera, Laich and Knuble line looked good last night. It surprised me that three muckers worked well, but maybe sometimes that's how it happens. Masybe evfery line doesn't need a sniper, a passer and a grinder.

Anyway, I called them the "twentysomethings."

21, 22 and 25.

Posted by: tominfl1 | December 31, 2009 6:46 PM | Report abuse

ok

Posted by: wendel2 | December 31, 2009 6:57 PM | Report abuse

Knuble is not a good fit for OV and Backstrom. It's not that he doesn't possess strengths that they don't have, its that his weaknesses hold them back. They need someone who can match their speed and skill and to a lesser degree, someone good in the corners. Knuble is average at best in the corners and has no skills. Semin is surprisingly good in the corners when determined because he tries to get the puck out quickly rather than trying to possess it and fend off the opponent. 8 and 19 need a fast-paced, speed game to be most effective and Semin is one of the few guys that can keep up with them. I think the best fit with 8 and 19 (other than 28) would be Green (yes Green). Obviously he'd leave a big hole on the backline, so it would probably hurt the D more than help the O, but I'd like to see it for a game or two.

Posted by: jst7q | December 31, 2009 7:05 PM | Report abuse

I hope I'm wrong. Last year Canadians GM fired coach while playing good hokey, they are still in the hole. The timing of GMGM with this trade could not have been worst. Everyone can say what ever, but why would one eat puck for GMGM. One plays for money , but eats puck for a shot at The Cup. You beat the toughest teams on the East and then you are sent off to a non play off team, of course morale goes kaboom. Again huge Caps fan, I hope I'm wrong.

Posted by: mmilen | December 31, 2009 7:12 PM | Report abuse

I've never seen so much made outta such a minor trade...

Posted by: joek443 | December 31, 2009 7:27 PM | Report abuse

Did GMGM destroy the chemistry of this team? Even though Clark was not a point producer, he was (we all admit) a force in the locker room. Jurcina was a big boy - hardest shot on team, right? While I can see the trade of a D-man, we were over stocked with D. The trade overall still confounds me as to the value prop.

Posted by: joeshred | December 31, 2009 8:13 PM | Report abuse

Della Rovere scores for Team Canada in World Juniors, 1-0 vs. U.S.

Posted by: zmega | December 31, 2009 8:14 PM | Report abuse

Jurcina was also a HEALTHY SCRATCH just about every other game and what good is having the hardest shot on the team when 90 percent of his shots never even hit the net???

Posted by: joek443 | December 31, 2009 8:27 PM | Report abuse

@CapsFan75: You might be on to something about Semin. His wrist might be acting up again. I was at the game Monday against the Hurricanes, and he seemed to avoid taking shots just like when his wrist was hurt before. I watched a little of the SJ game but fell asleep because of the lateness of the game so I couldn't tell if he was shooting or not. Of course, none of the Caps shot in the first period.

Chin up, Caps! It's a new year in a matter of hours.

I wish all the Caps fans peace, prosperity and good health in 2010. And I wish the Caps the same plus a Stanley Cup.

Posted by: dccitizen1 | December 31, 2009 8:28 PM | Report abuse

"The trade overall still confounds me as to the value prop."

Posted by: joeshre

IMO a faster version of Clark.

Posted by: Capsyoungguns | December 31, 2009 8:49 PM | Report abuse

@mmilen
I have to say I agree.
Team is leading the east after beating two quality teams, then team captain and defenseman packed off with no warning. I'm not saying Caps won't overcome this, and I'm not saying it wasn't a good trade, but I think it hurt morale. When I went to Caps Covention I noticed how many other players were joking around with Jurcina. They were buddies. Yes this is a business and the players are paid well, but trades affect players, friends, wives, kids, etc. I'm sorry to make so much out of what was called a "minor" trade, just giving my 2 cents. Go Caps!

Posted by: kcbrichmond | December 31, 2009 8:56 PM | Report abuse

@zmega...

Thanks dude...something from all the domesdayr's...

Carlson out there too

Posted by: ralCapsFan | December 31, 2009 9:01 PM | Report abuse

the people who always come on here and shout "trade Green, Semin, Poti, Schultz!!!!" BETTER TAKE HEED.

if the team falls apart after trading a 3rd line winger and a 7th d-man as noted by a few people on here, what will happen if they trade one of those players??

Posted by: joek443 | December 31, 2009 9:11 PM | Report abuse

U.S. ahead 2-1 on a shorty. Great game so far. Big U.S. d and good goalie vs. Canada's speed, but really two good teams with lots of talent. Lots of first round NHL draft quality talent.

Posted by: zmega | December 31, 2009 9:12 PM | Report abuse

Score tied 2-2, U.S. just missed on a penalty shot.

Posted by: zmega | December 31, 2009 9:18 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: TheSuperhoo | December 31, 2009 9:27 PM | Report abuse

3-2 U.S. on another shorty, end of second period.

The Juniors play an open style, similar to Olympic hockey. Watching this game has me psyched for the Olympic tournament. This is one of the best games I have seen in a while, lots of action, lots of skill on display.

Della Rovere is very prominent in the game. Think Matt Bradley with more skill and more of an edge. The kind of guy you really don't want to play against. He will take some penalties, but I think he has already drawn a couple tonight. He will be popular with the fans in Hershey next year, I predict, and before long at Verizon Center.

Posted by: zmega | December 31, 2009 9:35 PM | Report abuse

@Hershey people
How is Osala doing?

Posted by: richmondphil | December 31, 2009 5:34 PM
--------------------------
Missed a few games recently due to illness. But even before that, he was definitely showing signs of sophomore slump. Not sure what his problem is...some games it seems like he's invisible. No energy.

Posted by: tess2201 | December 31, 2009 9:52 PM | Report abuse

I believe it was Corey M. who tweeted on Monday that Semin was going back to the bench in pain during the Carolina game and slammed the door.

The blog, "Russian Machine Never Breaks", said he had left a shift in third period complaining about his wrist and cursing in Russian. He did return to the game.

I hope Semin is okay.

Posted by: CapsFan75 | December 31, 2009 10:04 PM | Report abuse

@Capsfan75

Good grief--me too.

Posted by: Capsyoungguns | December 31, 2009 10:07 PM | Report abuse

@Capsyoungguns

I know you'll be sympathetic with me. I read today's entry on the "Storming the Crease" blog. Most of the New Year's wishes are fairly mainstream wishes which include: lifetime contract for Nicky; making Brooks Laich captain; All Star game being hosted at Verizon Center; due credit for GM McPhee but the author wants to "End the Alex Semin" experiment. The author of that blog really has it in for Semin in general and I bet you money that he would have been very happy to have seen Semin go to Columbus than either Clark or Juice.

Posted by: CapsFan75 | December 31, 2009 10:35 PM | Report abuse

live tv and live score for free

http://www.nowgoal.com/22.shtml

Posted by: d1g00f | January 5, 2010 2:04 AM | Report abuse

live tv and live score for free

http://www.nowgoal.com/22.shtml

Posted by: d1g00f | January 5, 2010 2:06 AM | Report abuse

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