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Erskine Out; Laing Nominated for Masterton

John Erskine is not practicing today. I mentioned in my notes last night that the rugged defenseman played only 5:12 against the Flames after getting in a fight with Eric Godard in the first period. I've inquired about his status, but I haven't received an update yet. I'll be sure to post an update when I hear something.

Reporters also attempted to get an interview with defenseman Brian Pothier last night, but he declined the request. Pothier has been out since January with a concussion.

Chris Clark has also returned to practice and appears to be skating relatively hard. I'll check with him after practice.

Update:The Washington beat writers have nominated Quintin Laing as the Capitals' Bill Masterton Memorial Trophy candidate for this season. The award is given each year to the player "best exemplifies the qualities of perseverance, sportsmanship, and dedication to ice hockey."

To us, that's Laing, who hasn't seen a slap shot he didn't want to throw his body in front of. The 28-year-old toiled in the minor leagues for more than seven seasons before getting his shot. He's definitely made the most of it.

"That's a fabulous reward for him," Coach Bruce Boudreau said. "If anybody on this team deserves something for perseverance, I would have to say it's Quintin Laing."

*Clark said he's made significant progress in recent days and is aiming to come back next week on the road trip to Nashville, Chicago and Atlanta.

*Erskine is out with an undisclosed injury and likely won't play tomorrow night. The Caps still have six healthy defensemen, but are considering calling up Sami Lepisto. That call, though, has not been made - yet.

*Looks like Olie Kolzig, who is coming off his 300th career victory, will get another start against the Thrashers. Boudreau wouldn't say for sure, but based on the fact that Huet stayed on the ice a lot longer than Kolzig today would seem to suggest that Kolzig will be the man tomorrow. Stay tuned on this one.

By Tarik El-Bashir  |  March 13, 2008; 11:17 AM ET
 
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Next: Kolzig In, Erskine Out, Lepisto Up

Comments

The Caps will not win against Atlanta - there is no way they can... they have lost to them in the past.

Also, if you think Alex is going to get 60 goals - you are very much confused... he can't get 60 goals. It's just not in him.

Who likes wings anyways... the Caps will not get the fans wings for the rest of the season...

apparently, I am an idiot - according to 11:29 of the last blog. Guess he doesn't know who I am.

Posted by: 828 | March 13, 2008 11:32 AM | Report abuse

@goalieman
This should be service announcement. I am reprinting it on todays blog.
'''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''
OVECHKAM!!!! YEAH!!!
If you didn't see it, here is what you miss:

Loop while witnessing in stupor:

Ovie stick his fingers up his nose.
Ovie blows a booger out his left nostril
Ovie looks up toward the telescreen
Ovie spits

EndLoop:

A great show for the Ovie is greater than hockey group,
a lousy show for the hockey fans.

Posted by: Anonymous | March 13, 2008 11:42 AM | Report abuse

Before people jump on 828, the caps are 1-0 since he started his reverse psychology thing.

Posted by: Sombrero Guy | March 13, 2008 11:43 AM | Report abuse

@828,

Why bother to play the rest of the season. Let's just pack it in. Oh and work is fun and exciting!

Posted by: Leeguru | March 13, 2008 11:44 AM | Report abuse

Thanks Sombrero Guy - don't forget... Alex has 2 goals as well.

4 goals in 11 games... yeah right! Good luck with that one pal.

Posted by: 828 | March 13, 2008 11:47 AM | Report abuse

Tarik...Do you know why Gussy was in town last night. Scouting for Sweedish National team or for some other reason?
Thanks

Posted by: Rich c | March 13, 2008 11:51 AM | Report abuse

Just call me the guy from Happy Gilmore!

You all want to go to the Sizzler after Fridays game and catch some grub?

Posted by: 828 | March 13, 2008 11:56 AM | Report abuse

If this whole reverse psychology thing is really going to work, then shouldn't we just go ahead and take it ALL the way and start cheering for guys like Brash and Laing to rack up nightly hat tricks while urging scorers like OV and Semin to block more shots and remember to "play within themselves?" While we're at it, maybe we should push for "Buce" (as my girlfriend likes to call him) to stop wearing such fancy ties and to "slum it up" a bit. Lately he's just been dressing too durrn fancy for my taste.

Also, hi everyone, I'm new. I fill "the void."

Posted by: Ovie's New Tooth | March 13, 2008 11:57 AM | Report abuse

McPhee added: "This wouldn't have worked if Olie wasn't the guy that he is. He's a great teammate and welcomed the other guy."

"the other guy"? What is that! gmgm, you talk about Huet like he's a mistress! When you work on resigning Huet, will the contract be between The Washington Capitals and "the other guy"? Typical, BB is congratulating Olie on his 300th win and gmgm is still trying to defend his position. gmgm=JOKE ( a Bad one). The first line of his quote is promising. At least gmgm recognizes that Olie has something about him, but it's evident he is not sure what it is. gmgm, It's called CLASS.
Oh well, Congratulations Olie on #300! Too bad gmgm wasn't gone five years ago; we would be congratulating you on your 400th win.

Posted by: someone else who knows | March 13, 2008 11:58 AM | Report abuse

Keep up the negativity 828, it seems to be working.

Posted by: Steve R | March 13, 2008 12:01 PM | Report abuse

Ovie's New Tooth,

Don't be ridiculous - there is no way Brash and Laing can get a hat trick.

Posted by: 828 | March 13, 2008 12:02 PM | Report abuse

Here we CAPS! Looking relatively good, at times slopy "D", but gritty all the well! Heart and teeth count for somthing don't they "Ovie's New Tooth"?

Posted by: Greenie | March 13, 2008 12:02 PM | Report abuse

Erskine got his @ss handed to him again, last night. The guy has heart but he just isn't a very good fighter. Has he won a fight yet? When that right connected with his cheek you could see the bulbs dim for a moment.

As of now, the Maple Leafs, Panthers and Caps are 5 points behind Philly, while the Sabres are 4 points behind but very injured. Philly has the most difficult record coming up. The Caps and Panthers face off against each other and the rest of the SE including the Canes for almost the remainder of the season. The Leafs have two each against the Sens, Habs, Bruins and Sabres.
The last few weeks are going to be pretty intense. If the Caps can get a streak going, not lose to the Cats, and fend off the Canes, they could make it... Its going to be close...

Go Caps!!!

Posted by: 007 | March 13, 2008 12:03 PM | Report abuse

Oooh, Sizzler! now that's some good eating. Ollies Glove hand is sizzling!

Posted by: Leeguru | March 13, 2008 12:04 PM | Report abuse

Hopefully Boudreau has finally accepted what I've been saying all season: Erskine freakin sucks and deserves to sit! I don't know what Eminger did to get on the management's bad side, but he deserves to play at least SOME of the remaining games!

Oh and 828, I don't see the Caps scoring one more goal this entire season. ;)

Posted by: Joe | March 13, 2008 12:04 PM | Report abuse

There is just something plain wrong about rooting for Pittsburg to beat anybody. Makes me almost vurp, but the Caps need for them to shut down Philly for all 3.

Posted by: Steve R | March 13, 2008 12:09 PM | Report abuse

Didn't Erskine miss a couple games after his last fight, too? Weird..

Posted by: Jordan | March 13, 2008 12:09 PM | Report abuse

Going with 828's new found success formula:

Chief, Puckguru, and SomeElseWhoKnows make positive and insightful contributions to this blog!

Posted by: Leeguru | March 13, 2008 12:11 PM | Report abuse

Great game last night. 1 down and 11 to go. BUF and PHI both lost, finally a positive night for the Caps. Unfortunately or not, its more likely for us to catch the 8th or 7th spot rather than catching CAR.

PHI has 11 games left, @BOS and @PIT back to back, then 3 at home vs ATL, NYR and NYI. Then 4 on the road vs @NYR, @NJD and @NYI back to back and finish in @PIT, then finish the season hosting NJD and PIT. That is as hard as it gets for a finishing 11 games. Only ATL and NYI are not playoff teams. Thats 8 games versus teams that have everything to play for. Based on the way they are playing right now, 4-6-1 would be a reasonable finish. That puts them at 88pts for the year.

BUF also have 11 games to play. They have a back to back this weekend, home vs CAR then @TOR. Then they have a 3 game homestand vs TB, TOR and OTT. Then on the road vs @OTT then home vs MON in a back to back. The next 4 are home vs BOS then 3 roadies vs @TOR, @MON and @BOS. Their schedule is much easier than PHI and I wouldnt be surprised if they finish with more points than the Flyers. 7-4-1, gives them 90 points.

Now us. We have 11 games left as well. Home vs ATL and BOS, then a killer 6 game road trip starting in @NSH and @CHI in a back to back. Then 7 straight againt Southeast conference opponents, @ATL, @CAR, @TB and @FLA, then home vs CAR, TB and FLA. Its going to be very difficult to imagine dealing with a 6 game road trip and also a 7 game division game streak. But, we have been playing better on the road recently and there is less pressure on the road, all this could be my heart talking. 8-2-1 gives us 91pts.

91 points.

Posted by: JSchon | March 13, 2008 12:12 PM | Report abuse

@Lee,

I just spit coffee all over my desk... Thanks pal

Posted by: Steve R | March 13, 2008 12:15 PM | Report abuse

Erskine needs to realize he doesn't have cinder-block paws and stop hitting helmets.

Posted by: keef | March 13, 2008 12:16 PM | Report abuse

I figured you'd like that one. Sorry to make you waste coffee. I know how important every drop is to you.

Posted by: Leeguru | March 13, 2008 12:18 PM | Report abuse

007 Bradley is the punching bag, Erskine is actually a good fighter. Now Brash is far and away our best fighter, and still top 10 in the league, maybe top 5(once you get in that group they are interchangeable)
Erskine wins more than he loses and he generally fights other heavyweights. Your view of him is skewed because he has gotten rocked a couple of times this year(Godard and Andrew Peters), but he did wipe the floor with Milan Lucic, who everyone seems to love. A couple of years ago erskine registered wins over George Parros, Eric Cairns, Colton Orr(twice),Andre Roy, and even Chris Simon. So while he's not one of the best in the league, Erskine is a respectable NHL Heavyweight.

Posted by: Fashi13 | March 13, 2008 12:20 PM | Report abuse

http://www.hockeyfights.com/

watch the pugilists at work

Posted by: JSchon | March 13, 2008 12:24 PM | Report abuse

I wouldn't call Bradley a punching bag. I also don't think Erskine is a great fighter. A couple of years ago he did have some good bouts. But this year he's been losing them and getting injured. Like I said, he has a lot of heart, but he doesn't win nearly enough to intimidate. Is Brashear training these guys? Can't we get him to?


Posted by: 007 | March 13, 2008 12:26 PM | Report abuse

@Rich c,

Gustafsson was the man! I still hate Denis Potvin for breaking his leg. No telling how far we would have gone far into the playoffs with him that year.

FYI, Alan Haworth was apparently also in the house last night too. Going back to some old school boys!

Posted by: King Gus | March 13, 2008 12:27 PM | Report abuse

Heart means everything here - we now have to just wait and see what the Boys come up with. Hopefully 6 on the road will give them a breather from the (terrible ice at VC) and relieve the home pressure allowing them to enjoy winning in other buildings! I have to agree with the CAPS, the VC ice is terrible, we have played exhibition games there and I'm telling you, it doesn't matter how sharp your skates are, you will loose an edge when you least expect it - that ice is terrible!

Posted by: Greenie | March 13, 2008 12:30 PM | Report abuse

@Jshcon --

You have to factor in that Toronto is also 'back' in the hunt. Because of that I think they'll beat Buff 2 out of 3 times. I don't think Buff, will get to 90 points --unless they go on a tear, but they are a bit injured.

I like where you are going with this though.

BELIEVE!

Posted by: Go SkinsGo | March 13, 2008 12:30 PM | Report abuse

what a d-bag pothier is for declining an interview request. YOU OWE IT TO THE FANS JERKA$$

Posted by: Anonymous | March 13, 2008 12:31 PM | Report abuse

Tarik, was Bengt there to console young Backstrom? In any event, I remember a break away goal he had against Hextall back in the late 80's. He pulled a curl and drag move that Semin would love to have opening up Hexy's five hole and then quickly buried it with the Cap Center crowd going wild!!!. Those were the days. Bring back the Patrick Division Please!

Posted by: Gussy | March 13, 2008 12:31 PM | Report abuse

somebody say Sizzler?

Posted by: Catalyst | March 13, 2008 12:31 PM | Report abuse

@Leeguru

Not to mention the late great (where is he?) caphcky. Of couse, he might be Chief.

Posted by: A Hardwick | March 13, 2008 12:37 PM | Report abuse

To add to all the Gus fans, he was the best darn skater I have ever seen! He may have been as good as Gretzky at skating. He use to single handedly un-dress the Patrick Divison defense with his skating ability.

Imagine if had Papa P's half slapper to go with it - Wow!!!!

Posted by: Greenie | March 13, 2008 12:38 PM | Report abuse

Anon at 12:31. Thanks for such wonderful sentiments. Putz.


Anyone else catch that quote from Olie about missing Alex when "everything's over"? A little more fuel for the fire about him retiring after this year.

Posted by: EricS | March 13, 2008 12:42 PM | Report abuse

Erskine's fight card for the season

http://www.hockeyfights.com/players/459

Official record is 1-2-1. You can review the fights on the link above. Best. Website. Ever.

Posted by: Sombrero Guy | March 13, 2008 12:50 PM | Report abuse

@828
You're absolutely right. About everything. I'm not robbing a bank to pay for seasontix next year, because there's No Chance those kids are going to tear their division to pieces and if they did that wouldnt thrill me anyway. Atlanta is just too good. No need to keep fast feet or cool heads against the Bruins.
Stop Caps Stop.

Posted by: redlineblues | March 13, 2008 12:50 PM | Report abuse

Only using the splits of the remaining teams left on the CAPs schedule, here are the goalie stats based on games played this year.

Huet
10-2-3 w/ .929sv%
Olie
6-9-2 w/ .899sv%

Posted by: JSchon | March 13, 2008 12:51 PM | Report abuse

As long as we're doing the opposite, Garry Bettman is the best thing to happen to hockey ever! The shootout is a stroke of pure genius. The officiating has very good lately. OV is out of gas for the season. Laing couldn't block a basket ball!

Posted by: BearsWoooo | March 13, 2008 12:51 PM | Report abuse

Whoops Jschon beat me to the hockey fights link

Posted by: Sombrero Guy | March 13, 2008 12:52 PM | Report abuse

its hours of viewing plessure

Posted by: JSchon | March 13, 2008 12:54 PM | Report abuse

@king gus
Yep..up until OV got here, Gussy had the most talent of anyone ever to play here and that was the best team that year the caps ever had, 4 Hall of Famers on the team and Gussy was the best players, the caps just never had a goalie in those days as good as the skaters. And plumbers were a great 3rd line. Did you see the night Hound Dog Kelly sticked Gussy and he turned around and punched his lights out, must have been 5 or 6 over hand rights. Cleaned his clock.

Posted by: Rich C | March 13, 2008 12:55 PM | Report abuse

Checked out the Caps website and this is the 10-year anniversary of the team's Stanley Cup run so several alumni are in town. There's also an interview with Calle Johansson and he's also in town with some kids from Sweden who wanted to see a Caps game so wonder if Gus is here with them as well. Either way, pretty sweet!

Posted by: King Gus | March 13, 2008 12:55 PM | Report abuse

I for one cannot decide who we have a better chance of catching.

First off..I think the Sabres are done..and hurt...so I'm leaving them out...Im also not worried about the teams next to us..only ahead..

We need to win 3 more games then Philly to get in..could happen

With Carolina, we go head to head twice (4 pts), and a game in hand (2 pts) So we would only need to pick up one more game then them, and win the SE.

Philly could tank and has a tough schedule...I think 8th may be our best shot...To get 8th we have to beat Carolina...so why not 3rd?

Posted by: SA_Town | March 13, 2008 12:55 PM | Report abuse

828, together, Brash and Laing are NOT an unstoppable force. I certainly hope that they DO play the way that we already KNOW they're capable of.

Greenie, teeth count for something, and that something is a shimmering white smile! (this comment paid for by Crest Inc. ®)

Posted by: Ovie's New Tooth | March 13, 2008 12:56 PM | Report abuse

We do not have a game-in-hand anymore.

Posted by: Anonymous | March 13, 2008 12:57 PM | Report abuse

@Tarik -

Have you ever been given any insight into why Semin has been lined up at RW a lot this year rather than his natural LW spot?

Posted by: Sombrero Guy | March 13, 2008 12:57 PM | Report abuse

@ Fashi13 - Bradley is a punching bag? I invite you to check out this photo.

http://slam.canoe.ca/Slam/Hockey/NHL/Games/2008/02/26/4878767-ap.html

Posted by: Jill | March 13, 2008 12:57 PM | Report abuse

@anon 12:57

CAR has 10 games left.

WAS has 11 games left.

Game in hand exists.

Posted by: JSchon | March 13, 2008 1:02 PM | Report abuse

Congrats, Quintin! Here's hoping you get back in the lineup soon.

Posted by: Jordan | March 13, 2008 1:05 PM | Report abuse

Better Headline: "Quintin Laing Takes "Heart" Trophy Honors"

Posted by: Ovie's New Tooth | March 13, 2008 1:06 PM | Report abuse

@Rich C,

I don't recall that particular bout Gus had with Kelly but he definitely wasn't a soft Swede (like Jorgen Pettersson). But I do remember a knockdown he threw on Nick Fotiu (I think). And, of course, his 5-goal game vs Philly, later matched by Bondra.

Posted by: King Gus | March 13, 2008 1:07 PM | Report abuse

Way to rebound last night. Backstrom also played like the Pens game never happened. Any bets that Ovie will hit 60 by the end of this weekend? I would love to see Clark in the line up soon, though Laich has done really well playing as our #1 grinder. The way Laich has played in front of the crease brings back memories of Dino Ciccarelli in a Caps uniform. Man what ever happened to Kevin Miller?

Posted by: Lowell | March 13, 2008 1:07 PM | Report abuse

Laing rules. My favorite Cap after Ovie, naturally.

I know these things get analyzed to death, but did anyone detect an air of "inevitability" in Olie's comments about missing Ovie when he is gone? It almost as if Olie expected his departure to be sounded sooner than later, with Huet seeming to latch on well here and Johnny under contract.

Thoughts?

Posted by: Shaggy | March 13, 2008 1:12 PM | Report abuse

@Shaggy

It certainly sounded like it. Olie probably knows a little bit more about the goalie situation for next year than any of us. He reached a great milestone and is playing inspired hockey. Hopefully the season continues and we make the play-offs with Olie being a part of it, that would be nice.

Posted by: JSchon | March 13, 2008 1:17 PM | Report abuse

Mo got the #3 hit on nhl.com... the hit he had on Crosby - watching that does not get old...

Posted by: 828 | March 13, 2008 1:19 PM | Report abuse

@828

where is that hit by Mo? Can't find it...

Posted by: Sombrero Guy | March 13, 2008 1:33 PM | Report abuse

Laing nominated for Masterson...awesome!!!
HOPEFULLY HE GETS TO PLAY FRIDAY SO THE FANS CAN SHOW OUR SUPPORT FOR HIS EFFORTS
sit brashear he needs the rest

Posted by: wendel | March 13, 2008 1:33 PM | Report abuse

Anaheim Ducks defenceman Chris Pronger could face disciplinary action from the National Hockey League after stomping on Vancouver Canucks centre Ryan Kesler on Wednesday night.

The incident happened in the opening minute of the second period in Anaheim's zone after a dump in from the blue line by Canucks defenceman Sami Salo.

Kesler - one of two Canuck forwards who chased down the puck behind the goal line - collided with Pronger along the boards and fell, and the Ducks captain appeared to deliberately step on him. Kesler did not suffer any injuries from after the incident.

"He stomped on me," Kesler told reporters after the game. "He got me on the calf."

Posted by: Yo | March 13, 2008 1:37 PM | Report abuse

Sombrero Guy,

go to nhl.com

go to hits of the week - 3-11-08 (on the right under nhl tv). Alex's hit on Malkin was #9...

Posted by: 828 | March 13, 2008 1:38 PM | Report abuse

never mind, found it. Under NHL TV. Duh.

Posted by: Sombrero Guy | March 13, 2008 1:38 PM | Report abuse

Hey Tarik,

"Washington Beat Writers" meet, does that just mean you and Corey go have a few beers and pick a candidate?

Posted by: old time hockey | March 13, 2008 1:39 PM | Report abuse

@old time hockey

lol

Posted by: Yo | March 13, 2008 1:47 PM | Report abuse

I was hoping Erskine could take care of Lucic Sunday. He actually was injured in the fight with Lucic, but it was not like a knockout from Googard.

Posted by: Yo | March 13, 2008 1:53 PM | Report abuse

Re Erskine.

Finally had a chance to watch the fight. (I was there but my seats didn't give me a great view of the fight.) I can see why Big John is hurting, he's lucky he wasn't knocked out with the haymaker. He might actually be visiting Pothier in the head trauma ward.

As for his fighting generally, he's ok. He doesn't have the boxing skills of a Brashear or a Laraque or one of those guys. So, he's going to lose more of those then he'll win. But, he's completely fearless. Whereas Brash will largely only fight other big known fighters, John will come over and accept any challenge to defend a mate.

And on the subject of fighters generally, Colton Orr is the most over-hyped piece of crap in the league. My kid could beat him into a blooddy pulp, and she doesn't even like to fight.

Posted by: old time hockey | March 13, 2008 2:01 PM | Report abuse

Hats off to Laing! He should be out there on every penalty kill. Sit someone else!


Posted by: 007 | March 13, 2008 2:04 PM | Report abuse

Tarik: "My paper cares more about hockey!"

Corey: "No, MY paper cares more about hockey!"

Tarik: "No, no, no, MY paper cares more about hockey!"

Corey: "Dude, NO. MY paper cares more about hockey!"

Mike Wise bellies up to the bar...

Mike: "Hey boys, watcha arguing about?"

Corey: "Hey Wise, would you hurry up and tell Tarik that MY paper cares more about hockey than his does?"

Mike: "hahahaha I did always like you Corey... you're one funny, funny guy! Which paper cares more about hockey... sheesh, you hockey beat reporters and your jokes! KILLER!"

Tarik: "Dude, Wise, he was being serious."

Mike: "Oh. This is sad. I have to go."

Tarik & Corey: "Siiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiigh."

Posted by: Ovie's New Tooth | March 13, 2008 2:06 PM | Report abuse

When is Mike Gartner going to come to a game, and can we please get his name in the rafters.

I mean he's in the Hall of Fame for crying out loud.

Posted by: SA-Town | March 13, 2008 2:07 PM | Report abuse

Off topic, but does anyone remember the "Let's go caps" promotional song from the mid-late 90's that they would play between breaks and stuff? I believe there might have also been a music video? Am I crazy?

Posted by: Jordan | March 13, 2008 2:10 PM | Report abuse

@ Sombrero Guy

Semin likes playing on the right side, I'm told. I wish he would communicate with the NA press more, so I can ask him these types of questions. But I think it could be a simple as that. I will ask BB tomorrow about it.

Posted by: Tarik | March 13, 2008 2:18 PM | Report abuse

Speaking of names missing from the rafters, I couldn't help but notice Bonzai's is still conspicuously absent. Criminal that the franchise's top two all-time scoring leaders don't have their numbers retired.

Posted by: JB | March 13, 2008 2:19 PM | Report abuse

What is an Ovie? Or an OV???

Posted by: KraziJoe | March 13, 2008 2:23 PM | Report abuse

@Ovie's New Tooth

You need to include Vogel in there...


@old time hockey

I've seen some good fights by Erskine. Like one with Simon, he rocked Simon pretty hard. Of course, Simon is old.

As of Googard's fight, he definitely got a concussion and a bad one. Why? Because he couldn't even finish the game, it tells a lot. He was hurt bad.

Now who's gonna take care of Lucic? Pothier is gone because of him.

Posted by: Yo | March 13, 2008 2:25 PM | Report abuse

The ice - the NHL told Abe that the VC needs dehumidifyers to improve the ice and he basically said I'm not spending the money unless it is for B'Ball.

Olie coming back - unless Olie gets a better offer from another team he will be back with the Caps. We don't have You-Eh next year yet and if we sign him we will try to sign Olie along with him. Johnson is a very average back up that we can get rid of via waivers, the same way we got him.

Posted by: BB | March 13, 2008 2:26 PM | Report abuse

@Tarik

Thanks dude. It seemed odd because I thought I had seen or read in the past that Semin preferred LW, so I had wondered if moving Semin to the RW had more to do with initially trying to make Flash a second line LW. However I could have made all of this up...

Posted by: Sombrero Guy | March 13, 2008 2:33 PM | Report abuse

@Sombrero guy

I believe Semin is a natural LW, but he finished last season playing RW with Ovechkin. I think Tarik reported then that Semin liked playing RW.

Hanlon initially didn't put Backstrom in the center (it does sound weird now) and, I could be wrong, but Backstrom played LW on the line with Semin.

Posted by: Yo | March 13, 2008 2:44 PM | Report abuse

@BB I heard the same thing about ABE - didn't want to spread rumors! Thanks for clarifying it! I'm telling you honestly, everyone complains in the league about our ice - seems to me it would be a lawsuit waiting to happen!
@JB I feel the same about the best names missing in the rafters especially Mike Gartner, and Peter Bondra!

Posted by: Greenie | March 13, 2008 2:52 PM | Report abuse

Whoever made the comment about Orr- amen; he doesn't impress me at all. Unless gross violations of hockey code are somehow a good thing (and Colton, sweetie- if you do violate the code, you've gotta answer the bell and accept what's coming). All you're doing is ruining a legendary surname.

Abe Pollin- put your hearing aid in and listen up; you have a young, fast, aggressive team built to last. Give them good ice; it'll help. See teams like Calgary and Edmonton (who have GREAT ice). Plus it'll confuse your divisional brethren and the slop they play on.

Posted by: Patrick | March 13, 2008 2:52 PM | Report abuse

Ridiculous. Pronger is not getting punished for his stomp on Kesler.

Posted by: #29 | March 13, 2008 3:05 PM | Report abuse

WE ALL NEED TO KNOW MORE ABOUT OVIES SHOULDER PLEASE!

Posted by: EVERYONE | March 13, 2008 3:14 PM | Report abuse

Yo, don't you worry -- Vogel will get his. ;-) All in good time...

Posted by: Ovie's New Tooth | March 13, 2008 3:19 PM | Report abuse

erics
if you have nothing good to say, which you dont, turn off your computer, scumbag

Posted by: scum cleaner | March 13, 2008 3:20 PM | Report abuse

Erskine isn't going to make anyone forget Joe Frazier, but he did rock Lucic in this one:
http://youtube.com/watch?v=pOqan4jMAn4

Posted by: Erskine.Lucic | March 13, 2008 3:24 PM | Report abuse

@EVERYONE

Didn't last night's performance tell you all you needed to know about his shoulder?

Posted by: Dinger | March 13, 2008 3:25 PM | Report abuse

patrick
pollin doesnt own the team, but he is an old prick

Posted by: noonan | March 13, 2008 3:27 PM | Report abuse

@Everyone

I dont want to know about OV's sore shoulder unless he is going to miss games because of it. He played fine last night.

Its a long season and players play through injuries and aches and pains all the time. I wouldnt be surprised if every Capital has at least one or two ailments bothering them but not enough enough to take them out of games.

Posted by: JSchon | March 13, 2008 3:28 PM | Report abuse

yea it was nice having the ovechkam, i got to see all the times he was flexing it

Posted by: Anonymous | March 13, 2008 3:29 PM | Report abuse

@Yo

Semin is a natural LW which is why I have been curious about the amount of time he has been on the right. It may be as simple as he liked RW better. I personally don't care where he plays as long as he scores haha. Given his reduced production this season (which most will attribute to the early season ankle sprain) I had been wondering if playing on the other side might have something to do with it. He seems to score most of his PP goals from the left side....

Posted by: Sombrero Guy | March 13, 2008 3:29 PM | Report abuse

How is Pothier doing? Is he skating?

Posted by: JSchon | March 13, 2008 3:30 PM | Report abuse

Hey when is our Captain coming back? How's his groin?

Tarik, have you seen his groin?

Posted by: JSchon | March 13, 2008 3:31 PM | Report abuse

one of the nicest looking groins ive ever seen

Posted by: Anonymous | March 13, 2008 3:40 PM | Report abuse

Tarik,
What's the deal with Pothier turning down an interview, is he grumpy or still out of it??

Posted by: Greenie | March 13, 2008 3:53 PM | Report abuse

Nobody is commenting on Olie starting tomorrow?
Personally I'd start Huet. Tomorrow is the most important game of the season (next game always is from now on), but add to that the fact that we seem to relax a bit against "minor" opponents.

Posted by: mauree | March 13, 2008 3:56 PM | Report abuse

There's a GREAT article about OV in the Calgary Herald.I don't know how to link to it,but I googled "Calgary Herald,hit sports,and entered Alexander the Admired....Enjoy

Posted by: roccky | March 13, 2008 3:57 PM | Report abuse

"Personally, I'd start Huet... for EVERY hockey game that is EVER played between NOW and the END OF TIME!!!"
-30% of the Post's message board users

If you sense the sarcasm, that's because I'm laying it on right nice.

Posted by: Ovie's New Tooth | March 13, 2008 4:04 PM | Report abuse

Olie is starting tomorrow because Huet owns the B's...as long as we don't have triple minors and 5 on 3's to deal with. Plus Olie has held the opponent to 2 or fewer goals in 7 of his last 10.

Posted by: Sombrero Guy | March 13, 2008 4:06 PM | Report abuse

link to the Alexander The Admired Calgary herald article

http://tinyurl.com/38x9le

Posted by: Sombrero Guy | March 13, 2008 4:09 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: Steve R | March 13, 2008 4:09 PM | Report abuse

Thanks, Sombrero Guy...At 62,I've seen a lot of hockey( Bobby Hull gave me a puck back in 61 at MSG),but kind of a novice at computers.

Posted by: roccky | March 13, 2008 4:13 PM | Report abuse

@Roccky

My pleasure. I'll gladly take the Bobby Hull puck as compensation for my hard work :-)

Posted by: Sombrero Guy | March 13, 2008 4:17 PM | Report abuse

What am I, chopped liver?

Posted by: Steve R | March 13, 2008 4:19 PM | Report abuse

@maurree,

Huet will start against the Bs, so Olie can go nuts and know that he gets a few days off to recover.

Posted by: old time hockey | March 13, 2008 4:19 PM | Report abuse

Got a package in the mail yesterday from the Caps for STH for next year. What's the story on the $10 tickets with a face value of $35? Are they restricted view?

Posted by: Steve R | March 13, 2008 4:22 PM | Report abuse

Kolzig is 1-2-1 w/ a .879sv% vs ATL this year.

Lets just hope that ATL has mailed it in for the year and Olie continues to play inspired hockey.

Huet is 1-0-1 w/ a .923sv% vs ATL.

Posted by: JSchon | March 13, 2008 4:23 PM | Report abuse

No restricted view at the phone booth. They just know you go for the cheap seats ;)

Posted by: Leeguru | March 13, 2008 4:25 PM | Report abuse

@Steve R

Nope...just not as quick on the draw ;-)

Posted by: Sombrero Guy | March 13, 2008 4:27 PM | Report abuse

BUFFALO, N.Y. - Nathan Paetsch is out indefinitely with a concussion, leaving the Buffalo Sabres' depleted defence down a third player in the midst of their final playoff push.

Posted by: Laraque's elbow | March 13, 2008 4:31 PM | Report abuse

@Sombrero,

It's hell to get old. Just ask Lee.

@Lee,

If you keep that up you're going to move down on the list of who I ask to go to games that Kay can't make...

Posted by: Steve R | March 13, 2008 4:32 PM | Report abuse

Your next choice is a Pens fan!

Posted by: Leeguru | March 13, 2008 4:36 PM | Report abuse

@Lee,

Exactly. Which means you get the invite to the Pens games.

Posted by: Steve R | March 13, 2008 4:53 PM | Report abuse

Nothing good to say? Ok...someone got the wrong bowl of Cherios this morning.

Great news for Laing. That man has to be one of the most fearless players in the game.

Posted by: EricS | March 13, 2008 5:07 PM | Report abuse

@Mauree

You said the same thing yesterday about starting Kolzig...most important game, etc...

Posted by: Anonymous | March 13, 2008 5:08 PM | Report abuse

Anyone see the "stomp" that Pronger had- tsn reports NO suspension. Most say it was just like Simon's and he got 30 games. I havent seen it and was curious. Si is a repeat offender, but Pronger has had a few suspensions too. Sounds like he got off with a slap on the wrist.

Posted by: cs | March 13, 2008 5:14 PM | Report abuse

@JSchon

That's kinda personal, isn't it? :)

===========

I can't remember where I read it (remember, gentle readers, I have CRS (Can't Remember Shhhhhtuff)), but someone said that AO only scores on PP. It may have been on TSN, or could have been here somewhere. Just thought I'd highlight the Calgary article.

The GR8

Washington Capitals star winger Alexander Ovechkin, by the numbers:

1 - NHL rank for goals (54), inter-division goals (40), even-strength goals (36), road goals (28), home goals (26), power-play goals (18), game-winning goals (9).

And, Thanks, Steve "Chopped Liver" R. for giving a direct link to the article. :)

Posted by: Greg S. | March 13, 2008 5:15 PM | Report abuse

@ cs

A slap on the wrist? Not even with a feather!

It was an intentional stomp. He must have pics of the Commish or Campbell doing something naughty.

Posted by: Greg S. | March 13, 2008 5:17 PM | Report abuse

Greg S,

Welcome. Things just coming full circle. I couldn't have attached it if you hadn't told me about the ctrl c thing way back when.

Posted by: Steve R | March 13, 2008 5:21 PM | Report abuse

Anyone notice the poll today at NHL.com is about Kolzig. I think he'll be riding high off his 300th win and won't want to follow it with his 293rd loss.

Posted by: Olie Fan | March 13, 2008 5:21 PM | Report abuse

If the Pronger "stomp" was intentional (which is questionable), then it's curious why there was no reaction--there was no penalty, and no one on Vancouver went at Pronger or anyone else on the Ducks after that. It's all been overblown, and perhaps Kesler was unhappy because they got beaten handily, and when he tried to mix things up, he didn't have a lot of success. I'd be mad too if I got "stomped" on and no one on my team came to my defense.

Posted by: Anonymous | March 13, 2008 6:17 PM | Report abuse

Tarik:

In the article the other day, you said that even if the Caps ran out 12-0 they wouldn't make the playoffs without "help" from other teams.

That's kind of a truism. Any team that is not in the playoff picture at *any* time in the season needs the teams ahead of it to lose games in order to move up in the standings, unless you have enough extra games to be played to make of the difference.

In reality, if the Caps go 12-0 (now 11-0) through the end of the season, it is highly improbable that they will miss the playoffs. The Caps are now 2.5 games back from the #8 spot and 3.5 games behind Carolina. 11-0 should do the trick.

Posted by: Drew | March 13, 2008 6:34 PM | Report abuse

@Drew

I think Tariks was trying to differentiate from a few games back where, although we were out of the playoff picture, we still controlled our own destiny. Start by just spotting us 2 points in the standings (pretend like we beat Boston or Pitt this weekend). Then we'd control our destiny... we wouldn't start in the playoff picture (we'd be 5 points behind Carolina with 1 game in hand) but if we went 12-0 we'd make the playoffs regardless of what other teams did (because we'd have won our game in hand and we'd have given Carolina 2 losses in the 2 games we play). Sorry this response is so long-winded, but I think that's at least what Tarik was getting at. The losses this weekend really did hurt because they changed our situation from one where we control our destiny to one where we do not.

Posted by: TripDonkeys | March 13, 2008 7:13 PM | Report abuse

@ | March 13, 2008 05:08 PM

Don't worry if we lose tomorrow I'll stop saying it.

Posted by: mauree | March 13, 2008 7:55 PM | Report abuse

God, I wish we had Halpern back. 6-5-11 in however many games. Sick.

Good job Laing! If I had a vote, it'd be for you.

Posted by: Whiter Mage | March 13, 2008 8:18 PM | Report abuse

The losses this weekend were terrible -- but let's not forget about Philly's schedule (as others have posted) and also Boston's apparent collapse. Sure, they won the game against us, but they shouldn't have. They are losing at home tonight to Tampa (bottom team in conference), then they play Philly on Saturday and us on Sunday. It is conceivable that by Sunday night we could be just two points behind Boston.

Posted by: jammand | March 13, 2008 8:56 PM | Report abuse

From the previous thread ...

Scott in Shaw:
I'm still wondering what Olie meant by that ... he said the exact same thing after the game in the locker room (www.nhl.tv); go figure. That's where he also said "when it's all said and done" he'll miss Ovie. I hope he does not hang 'em up yet. His record lately has been good ... I'd like to see him get a shot at the Cup.

MetalCap:
The video montage for Olie can be seen on www.nhl.tv.

Posted by: Boo! | March 13, 2008 9:49 PM | Report abuse

Leeguru:
Is Steve picking on you?!?

SO happy for Laing - he deserves it! Did anyone read Tarik's article? He has almost as many blocks as Laich (who is #1) and he has played a fraction of the games! He really does add value out there - and I agree with others who say he motivates others to elevate their games. I hope he wins - he deserves it!

Looking forward to tomorrow - the Thrashers are depleted ... we can take 'em!! :-D LET'S GO CAPS!!!

Posted by: Boo! | March 13, 2008 10:04 PM | Report abuse

Depleted Thrashers just beat Calgary 6-4. Kovulchuk hat trick.

Posted by: JSchon | March 13, 2008 10:13 PM | Report abuse

At least BOS lost.

They lost to TB, another team that has nothing but pride to play for.

None of these games are going to be gimmies, depleted or not.

Posted by: JSchon | March 13, 2008 10:16 PM | Report abuse

JSchon:
Great ... well, hopefully they'll be good and tired tomorrow ... or maybe we just wore Calgary out ... whatever, I'm keeping the faith!! ;-)

Posted by: Boo! | March 13, 2008 10:17 PM | Report abuse

Have faith Boo, we all should. I do.

Just pointing out depleted or not, no one is going to give a free pass.

Posted by: JSchon | March 13, 2008 10:19 PM | Report abuse

Does anyone have any new info on whether Ollie is going to be the starter tomorrow?

Posted by: Anonymous | March 13, 2008 10:48 PM | Report abuse

@ Sombrero Guy

Can you tell the difference between RW and LW>>>??? I've seen you play... :-)

Posted by: Scofield | March 14, 2008 6:51 AM | Report abuse

@Jammand -- "It is conceivable that by Sunday night we could be just two points behind Boston."

we're 5 back now -- so we could end up one point back Sunday night. Of course, we could also end up nine back

Posted by: Hook | March 14, 2008 7:00 AM | Report abuse

We HAVE to win the next two games. Atlanta has got to be tired after yesterday's game, and Boston will be tired after the game against Philly (which will be a war I bet).

Come on boys - focus, play like a team, kill.

Posted by: mauree | March 14, 2008 8:35 AM | Report abuse

@Greg S

You know, as far as the NHL is concerned, AO is trailing in the only category that really counts: Goals Scored By Player Named Crosby (0)

Posted by: JB | March 14, 2008 8:45 AM | Report abuse

@JB
Crosby scored yesterday. His cousin's neighbor stepdaughter caught a comcast nhl summary while surfing the channels (there was a commercial on mtv). Apparently that's enough for him to get credited a goal.

Posted by: mauree | March 14, 2008 9:04 AM | Report abuse

Did someone say they wanted Halpern back? No way. Hell, Brain Willsie scored 19 goals for us a few years back, let's get him back too.

Regardless of what happens this year. You've got to be pretty excited to be a caps fan. Just imagine how good the team will be next year with 2 number 1 goalies, clark, nylander, alzner, maybe fedorov and no erskine.

Posted by: Jake | March 14, 2008 9:48 AM | Report abuse

@Hook

We are six back of Boston. If we win tonnight and Sunday and they lose to PHI tomorrow, Boston's in 8th and we're back 2.

Posted by: jammand | March 14, 2008 10:01 AM | Report abuse

Halpern? Are you serious? I liked him when he was here, but he had his chance to stay and decided to leave. Have fun in TB.

This year aint over. But we should be be atop of the Southeast for years to come with the wealth of young talent already here and almost here.

Posted by: JSchon | March 14, 2008 10:20 AM | Report abuse

@Jammand

My bad -- I misread it. We could be one back of the Flyers, but that would mean a Boston victory.

Posted by: Hook | March 14, 2008 10:22 AM | Report abuse

Is there any way Boudreau is not Coach of the Year?

Posted by: kevbpgc | March 14, 2008 9:28 PM | Report abuse

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