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Canadiens' Josh Gorges and Brian Gionta talk about the Caps' streak

A few of the Canadiens conceded this morning that they're in awe of what the Capitals have been able to accomplish over the past month. That said, they're itching to put an end to Washington's 14-game winning streak tomorrow at Centre Bell.

But if the Habs are going to be the ones to snap Washington's historic run, they'll have to do it without several key players. The Montreal injured list is a lengthy one. Among the wounded are Mike Cammalleri (knee), Marc-Andre Bergeron (knee), Andrei Kostitsyn (knee), Benoit Pouliot (upper body) and Paul Mara (upper body).

In all, the Habs are expected to be without about 40 percent of their goals.

What wasn't so clear was which goaltender will start in goal for the Canadiens. Coach Jacques Martin declined to say whether he'll tap Carey Price or Jaroslav Halak. Price has played the previous three games (1-1-1) against the Caps this season but Halak has been the better of the two.

Most of the questions from reporters after this morning's practice at Complexe Sportif Bell in suburban Montreal dealt with GM Bob Gainey's unexpected resignation yesterday. But I figured you'd be more interested in what they had to say about the Caps, who can move into a tie for the second longest streak in league history with a win (the 1981-82 Islanders also won 15 in a row).

Josh Gorges's thoughts:

Brian Gionta:

That's it from Brossard, Quebec, which has far, far less snow than Washington at the moment.

By Tarik El-Bashir  |  February 9, 2010; 2:19 PM ET
 | Tags: Montreal Canadiens  
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Next: Olympics robs D.C. of Alex Ovechkin, red-hot Caps

Comments

El Firsto?

Posted by: mireskan | February 9, 2010 2:29 PM | Report abuse

Nice interviews, Tarik. Thanks.

Is it Wednesday yet?

Posted by: dccitizen1 | February 9, 2010 2:34 PM | Report abuse

Well here's to 15-16-17 and further!!! Happy to see VARLY back but I hope the current chemistry isn't affected!!

GO CAPS!!!!!!

Posted by: broud0 | February 9, 2010 2:37 PM | Report abuse

Theo gets the nod in MTL, after that up to BB's mood and the outcome of Wednesday...take it one game at a time guys...

Posted by: netminder71 | February 9, 2010 3:02 PM | Report abuse

He basically said that the Caps were gonna take it to em....he's ready for his whipping...

Posted by: SA-Town | February 9, 2010 3:12 PM | Report abuse

too many days without hockey

Posted by: lylewimbledon | February 9, 2010 3:23 PM | Report abuse

Ovi loves the Bell Centre.
Back to back hattricks.
Semin gets 4 assists.
B.Mo does nothing.

Posted by: JSchon | February 9, 2010 3:26 PM | Report abuse

Please play Price! He kinda sucks! Halak is really good.

lylewimbledon: Agree. Two days is just too many.

Posted by: rachel216 | February 9, 2010 3:28 PM | Report abuse

@broud0

Varly's no stranger to being a new goaltender being brought in during a historic winning streak. When he did his rehab start earlier, the Bears were on a winning streak (and they set their franchise record in that department). Usually, Holtby was in goal.

On the Bears, they lost one game to break their winning streak, only to start another winning streak after that.

Posted by: CapsFan75 | February 9, 2010 3:28 PM | Report abuse

I think its Neuvy, Theo, and then Varly against STL. Theo has to be in net vs. Ott.

Posted by: BACKS | February 9, 2010 3:30 PM | Report abuse

My apologies. Too much bad energy there. I hope B.Mo sets E.Fehr twice.

Posted by: JSchon | February 9, 2010 3:30 PM | Report abuse

Tkachuk? A Cap?

Posted by: lylewimbledon | February 9, 2010 3:33 PM | Report abuse

lylewimbledon all I have seen on that was Eck on Hockeybuzz saying we were one of the teams in on him. Have you seen anything more?

Posted by: icehammer97 | February 9, 2010 3:40 PM | Report abuse

@JSchon

Love your predictions. Will Ovi, Semin, and Fehr do a lot of their damage on the PP? They do show up together a fair amount of time on the PP.

Yes, time for my favorite boys to do it. (Also time for Flash to score again. He's overdue.)

Posted by: CapsFan75 | February 9, 2010 3:42 PM | Report abuse

And here's for motivation for the Caps. Montreal could be a First Round Playoff Opponent.

(Okay, I've been saying it an awful lot lately but there are so many teams in the EC bunched up closely in the standings.)

Posted by: CapsFan75 | February 9, 2010 3:49 PM | Report abuse

i don't think adding an aging ex-elite player will improve the team to the 'next level'
fedorov was an improvement when he was pickup (for ted ruth) at the time. most of the players mentioned so far could add experience - but, IMO, not really a whole lot of additional skill. if you want to replace sloan with niedermayer - then you have gained something. i just don't think you can get him for that little. niedermayer for poti or pothier is more of a give and take (skill sets) and most likely not a great increase in overall skills.
i'd rather see the caps look for a chimera type acquisition when shopping for a dman or center.
i also don't see GMGM making any moves where he is asked to give up too much.

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | February 9, 2010 3:51 PM | Report abuse

Tkachuk? Can he still play at all?

Posted by: ccCapsfan | February 9, 2010 3:56 PM | Report abuse

@tom, JSchon, everyone.

RE; center

There's a little bit of smoke around the idea of Tkachuk coming to the Caps. I haven't watched much Blues this season, but he fits the bill perfectly. He doesn't hit like he used to, I'm sure, but he's a gritty 3rd line checking center, with a scoring touch. Ability to kill penalties and deliver big hits. Vet/leader.

Posted by: richmondphil | February 9, 2010 3:57 PM | Report abuse

Oh, you guys already heard.

I'd gladly take on Tkachuk, but I don't know if this rumor is even close to being legitimate. Shrug.

Posted by: richmondphil | February 9, 2010 3:59 PM | Report abuse

@richmondphil: You have to be fast to surface a rumor first on this blog. :^)

Posted by: ccCapsfan | February 9, 2010 4:01 PM | Report abuse

niedermayer for poti or pothier is more of a give and take (skill sets) and most likely not a great increase in overall skills.

________________

Eh, I disagree. Nieds is having a pretty bad year, but so is every Duck. He put up very impressive numbers last year, and I think he has a ton left in the tank.

Posted by: richmondphil | February 9, 2010 4:01 PM | Report abuse

@ccCapsfan

Haha, yeah. I got to teach myself to read comments before posting.

Posted by: richmondphil | February 9, 2010 4:02 PM | Report abuse

@capsfan75
1st period
3:23 - ovechkin goal 43 - backstrom, green
8:18 - fehr goal 16 - morrison, chimera
14:22 - ovechkin goal 44 PP - semin, green
19:01 - fleischmann goal 18 - semin, laich

2nd period
7:44 - fehr goal 17 - pothier, morrison

3rd period
0:43 - ovechkin goal 45 PP - knuble, semin
7:21- some French canadien guy - some French canadien guy, plekanec
17:55 green goal 14 PP- semin, backstrom

Final
WAS 7
MTL 1

Posted by: JSchon | February 9, 2010 4:11 PM | Report abuse

haven't heard much on Tkachuk...sounds like we are shopping for a big(size) center and possibly a bruising Dman...same old, same old. GMGM may stay pat, but I'm not sure if this is a playoff team? Yes, yell at me everyone...we are awesome(regular season), but the playoffs are a whole new game.

Posted by: lylewimbledon | February 9, 2010 4:19 PM | Report abuse

@JSchon

That sounds good to me. It would put Semin ahead of Ilya Kovalchuk in the points race. He is currently only 2 points behind Kovy. (5 goals behind but 3 more assists.)

Speaking of Kovalchuk, did you know that he and Steven Stamkos has almost identical stats. Stamkos has one more goal at the moment, they have the same number of assists, Stamkos is 0 and Kovy is plus 1. (Stamkos has spent much less time in the penalty box.)

Posted by: CapsFan75 | February 9, 2010 4:31 PM | Report abuse

@Lyle

100% true.
TK is a vet, a big, a nasty and would look great inberween fehr and chimera.

That could be a monster line for 12 minutes a game.

Posted by: JSchon | February 9, 2010 4:34 PM | Report abuse

It's time for the Caps to defeat Ming of Mongo for win #15.

They already have Flash (#14) number of wins. Now, it's time for Gordon (#15) number of wins.

Or some might argue that the Penguins are the Caps' equivalent of Ming of Mongo.

Posted by: CapsFan75 | February 9, 2010 2:21 PM


@CapsFan75:

Good numerology.


As for Tkachuk, I think he does still have some gas in the tank. I remember way back when I bought NHL2000, my first move in setting up my game was to put Tkachuk and Roenick in Caps sweaters...and then whup @$$ consistently on the Jager/Lemieux Pens.

Posted by: Rhino40 | February 9, 2010 4:35 PM | Report abuse

If fehr is on the ice and pushing and mixing it up is going on, fehr is in the middle of it. Add Chimera and TK and that's a in your face line.

Posted by: JSchon | February 9, 2010 4:40 PM | Report abuse

I swear I'm liking the TK rumors more and more I think about it.

Posted by: JSchon | February 9, 2010 4:44 PM | Report abuse

Thumbs up on the idea of acquiring Tkachuk.

Posted by: Cerealman | February 9, 2010 4:47 PM | Report abuse

It all makes sense. We hate canada because of green not making the olympic team. So who do we get chimera and we are rumored to be going after hotel bashing TK.

Posted by: JSchon | February 9, 2010 4:53 PM | Report abuse

Tkachuk is 11th in the leage in faceoff percentage (56.7%), right behind Crosby.

He's 55.67% on even strength draws, and he's 61.54% on PP faceoffs. He hasn't taken a draw on the PK all season.

He's fifth in the league in road faceoff percentage (56.5%).

For reference, Morrison's total faceoff percentage is 50.7%. Backstrom comes in at 49.3%. Stecks is still 3rd in the league at 60.2%.

Posted by: JohninMpls | February 9, 2010 4:55 PM | Report abuse

Ugh...37 years old.
Luv what Tkachuk was.
A 10 minute player is all he is now @ best on this team. & only on that 3rd line combo.
No where else IMO.

Is that worth a 3rd or a 4th rd pick sure.

A Tyler Sloan? Sure.
A Pothier? No.
Is Chris Borque still in the org?

Posted by: Rocc00 | February 9, 2010 4:55 PM | Report abuse

i have a friend who follows the blues. Thachuk is down to the fourth line with the blues. Does not play a lot of minutes. looks slow and old. So could he be another fedrov type of move for us. One thing i know is that GMGM is very conservative and would probably make a safe move by trading a pick to get a player. Blues do have a lot of centers in the pipelines so lets see. The blues players we would want are jackman on D and Jay Mcclement as the Center to shutdown checking guy

Posted by: samb99 | February 9, 2010 5:00 PM | Report abuse

@Rocco

we don't need an overhaul, we a tweak. TK is a positive tweak. I've said it before, I'm against trading away our top 9 + steckel and our top 4 alzner and carlson and varly and neuvy, but if we can get TK for a pick and one of our UFAs I'm down.

Posted by: JSchon | February 9, 2010 5:05 PM | Report abuse

Umm, I don't get to watch the western conference nearly enough, but since when is Tkachuk a center?

Posted by: cainoo7x | February 9, 2010 5:12 PM | Report abuse

Tkachuk is a LW, not a center but he does take his share of faceoffs...

I think I would rather go after Owen Nolan than him.. he was part of that US olympic team that embarrassed us all and somehow I've never forgotten that

Posted by: joek443 | February 9, 2010 5:17 PM | Report abuse

@Tarik

Thank you for the video of two Habs' players thoughts about the Caps historic streak. Puts it into perspective nicely--from a player's point of view. Great stuff!

Posted by: Capsyoungguns | February 9, 2010 5:17 PM | Report abuse

Since he takes faceoffs?

Posted by: JSchon | February 9, 2010 5:19 PM | Report abuse

I'm going former Soviet Union in this Olympiad for any1 that cares.

Hate Crosby.
Americans don't have any marquee names.
OV, Semin, Varly are USSR.

Posted by: Rocc00 | February 9, 2010 5:23 PM | Report abuse

horcroft and hamhuis are on my wish list

Posted by: lylewimbledon | February 9, 2010 5:24 PM | Report abuse

horcroft and hamhuis are on my wish list

Posted by: lylewimbledon | February 9, 2010 5:24 PM | Report abuse

Tkachuk might not be the creative center we need on te 3rd line, he is big, good on the dots and can be a pest for opponents. B.mo is neither a scoring threat, a pest or a dot specialist.

Posted by: JSchon | February 9, 2010 5:25 PM | Report abuse

@Rocc00

And the US has Orpik, the hypocritical whiner himself, not to mention the dirty double cross checker himself, David Backes.

And I also heartily dislike Team Canada's cast of characters (i.e. Crosby)

So, I will join you in being a communist and rooting for the former Soviet Union in hockey.

Posted by: CapsFan75 | February 9, 2010 5:28 PM | Report abuse

So, I will join you in being a communist and rooting for the former Soviet Union in hockey.
Posted by: CapsFan75 | February 9, 2010 5:28 PM |

As Cartman & Co. said - Blame Canada!

Posted by: Rocc00 | February 9, 2010 5:35 PM | Report abuse

Is Huet playing for the Frogs?

Posted by: SA-Town | February 9, 2010 5:36 PM | Report abuse

Washington must play hard that 4th line of the Canadiens is mostly callups and kids and they play with a lot of heart and intensity and really stuck it to the Pengwhines on Saturday.

Posted by: zcxnissan | February 9, 2010 5:54 PM | Report abuse

I think this is one of the reasons why the olympic games really haven't done what the NHL hoped that it would - a significant amount of people in this country have more loyalty to the players of their NHL team than the flag they play under and could never root the US team because of certain players they hate.

Thus they aren't really in effect that much different from other NHL games. whether you like basketball or not, watching those superstars playing for the Gold was something special. I don't think I'll get that feeling watching Ovie, Semin and Varly win the Gold for Russia

Posted by: joek443 | February 9, 2010 6:01 PM | Report abuse

@SA-Town

All the posts on Huet are making me make think of a horrible pun -- in French.

Question: Où est le gardien de but?

Translation:(Where is the goalie?)

Answer:

Huet est le gardien de but.

Translation: Huet is the goalie

Note: Huet is pronounced the same way as the French words for "Where is".

Posted by: CapsFan75 | February 9, 2010 6:23 PM | Report abuse

Schwing! http://tsn.ca/nhl/story/?id=309530

Took a while (for people to see the light) but well deserved.

Posted by: AleksanderOMunchkin | February 9, 2010 6:34 PM | Report abuse

nhl channel is showing 'classic series' right now - 2009 pen vs caps

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | February 9, 2010 7:04 PM | Report abuse

Sharks GM Wilson: We're happy with team, but 'you're always looking' Rumors linking Niclas Wallin to the San Jose Sharks began to surface a few weeks ago. But the fact is, Sharks GM Doug Wilson was after the veteran blueliner way, way, way before that.

"We did a lot of research into Nic," Wilson told ESPN.com Monday. "We tried to get him for the last two years to be honest with you."


There are a lot of mutual friends that speak really highly of him as a teammate and competitor," Wilson added. "Whether it be Arturs Irbe or Bret Hedican, for example. We know about him as a person and as a teammate, and he's always played his best hockey in the playoffs."

maybe the fact that the Caps and the Canes are in the same division made GM Rutherford reluctant to deal him to the Caps but I think he's someone who could have helped them in the playoffs

Posted by: joek443 | February 9, 2010 7:24 PM | Report abuse

dc feds stay home again tomorrow

Posted by: ebolean1 | February 9, 2010 7:30 PM | Report abuse

@ebolean1

Frankly, I doubt that the DC Feds will go to work this week unless absolutely "essential".

Posted by: CapsFan75 | February 9, 2010 7:37 PM | Report abuse

Is Tkachuk the player we need? Haven't watched him, but I doubt it. Our primary weakness, IMHO, is the PK. Would he add to that? I'm not thinking so. He would definitely add some much-needed toughness, but his primary position is LW. To properly give him his 14 mins/game, you'd really need to cut back Chimera. I don't think that's the answer. I want a guy with Tkachuk toughness but younger, primarily a center and whose primary skill is defensive.

JSchon: Hey, nice prediction, anyone can predict the final score with each goal including assists and exact times, but you didn't also predict the penalties and the ever-important attendance.

Posted by: tominfl1 | February 9, 2010 7:37 PM | Report abuse

I'll throw one out, you can go ahead and fire your harpoons.

I've always liked RJ Umberger. Plays center, got some grit. The Jackets have a few centers and are short on LW.

Umberger is signed two more years with cap hit 3.75. We could take him if we gave back someone whose cap hit would come close to that. And he'd give us a pretty decent checking center whichever line you want to call it.

Tomas Fleischmann for RJ Umberger, straight up.

Ladies and gentlemen, you heard it here first.

Signed, Nostrathomasinfl1

Posted by: tominfl1 | February 9, 2010 7:49 PM | Report abuse

@capsfan

I only report and leave all predictions up to Nostrathomasinfl1. ;^)

Posted by: ebolean1 | February 9, 2010 7:57 PM | Report abuse

The story now is that Green is being benched since he was late for practice today.

Since Erskine's already questionable for tomorrow, we're down to 5 available defensemen, unless someone is called up from Hershey. However, there's no way on Earth they can get up from there since I assume that the snowstorm is hitting there as well. (Unless they've already been called up.)

So will Quentin Laing be making his NHL debut on the blue line? Or will someone else switch from forward to the blue line?

I know Laich has played on the blue line during an emergency except that having him there would disrupt the 2nd line.

Posted by: CapsFan75 | February 9, 2010 7:59 PM | Report abuse

For those who haven't seen much of Tkachuk he can be seen tonight against Detroit on VS.

Posted by: icehammer97 | February 9, 2010 8:01 PM | Report abuse

I'm looking for info about (and preferably video of) a game I went to about 2-3 years ago. It was a Capitals game at Verizon Center. It is memorable because early on everyone on the ice was fighting, goalies included - I'm pretty sure it was Kolzig in net for the Caps. There were more PIM doled out than minutes played (by far). This was before I knew about hockeyfights.com or CapsInsider, so I didn't think to look it up back then. :(

I know this is vague info to go on, but I was hoping someone could jog my memory.

- cosmicdebris at g mail dot com

Posted by: superswede19 | February 9, 2010 8:02 PM | Report abuse

"The story now is that Green is being benched since he was late for practice today."

I'll believe that when I see that, which I hope is not the case. But yeah, I would find it very hard to believe that BB would actually do that, especially not in a winning streak!!! Maybe reduce his ice time, but not flat out bench him. If BB is starting a rotation on D right now, I would hope he decides to rest a guy who did not just come off a three game "rest" last week.

Go Caps!

Posted by: The_Stanley_Caps | February 9, 2010 8:04 PM | Report abuse

Tomas Fleischmann for RJ Umberger, straight up.Ladies and gentlemen, you heard it here first.
Signed, Nostrathomasinfl1

Posted by: tominfl1

Tom, I think you are hitting the wacky tobaccy again. Fleishmann is probably BB's favorite guy on the team (read his book if you haven't already). Plus, the production of Semin since Flash began to center for him is just another example of the genius of BB. This trade has zero percent chance of happening.

Posted by: ccCapsfan | February 9, 2010 8:10 PM | Report abuse

@The_Stanley_Caps

I didn't think it was something that Boudreau characteristically did -- until now.

That news is actually posted on the tsn.com site.

http://tsn.ca/nhl/injuries/

Posted by: CapsFan75 | February 9, 2010 8:11 PM | Report abuse

@The_Stanley_Caps

Of course, how do you kick D-men out of the lineup when we have exactly the right number available before today.

Will Oisk have to come back tomorrow before he is ready?

Have they called up Alzner or Carlson? If Bruce were planning to bench Green tomorrow, I hope he made his call to Alzner or Carlson so they could get out of Hershey and into Montreal before the snowstorm.

Okay folks, get ready for some interesting line combinations and defensive pairings tomorrow.

Posted by: CapsFan75 | February 9, 2010 8:18 PM | Report abuse

Flash has some of that Detroit pedigree in him.
If he becomes another Datsyuk - there's our 2nd line center.

I really enjoy watching him play the 2 way game & he really is relishing his role @ center.

I notice him more in our own zone than Backs sometimes.

Posted by: Rocc00 | February 9, 2010 8:18 PM | Report abuse

ccCapsfan: Wacky tobaccy you say?

Perhaps back in my college days...yes, I fully participated in my generation (70s). Spent many nights debating the merits of Aristotle vs Jefferson vs Marx.

About one nanosecond after I retire from the defense industry and give up my clearance I will pack that bowl once more (not too tight!) and take a good, hard toke. By God, it will feel almost as good as...well, whatever.

I don't care how much BB likes Flash. He would like RJ even more.

Posted by: tominfl1 | February 9, 2010 8:21 PM | Report abuse

Tkachuk can play center or wing. A line of Tkachuk, Chimera and Fehr could be nice. Big line.

Neidermayer is the key. He has won 3 cups, captained one of those teams. He has tons of experience.

How about Neidermayer and Selanne? Trade Alzner, 1st and a prospect. Put Selanne on a line with Flash and Semin. Move Laich to 3, Chimera to 4. Scratch Gordo.

Also, move Morrisonn is a seperate deal to make some more room. Maybe even Gordon.


Posted by: underpants2 | February 9, 2010 8:31 PM | Report abuse

Niedermayer yes, Salanne no... and Nieds has won 4 Cups, 3 with jersey one with the ducks

Posted by: joek443 | February 9, 2010 8:34 PM | Report abuse

@tominfl: Oops, didn't mean to impugn your purity in the eyes of the defense industry. :^)

I agree that Umberger is a good player, but I don't see him as either better than Flash today or having more upside. I also think that they like the idea of having Semin centered by a guy who can speak some Russian. Semin and Flash obviously have some great chemistry. When a team is going great and has great chemistry you don't make changes like that even if you are convinced (which I am not) that there is a slight upgrade.

Posted by: ccCapsfan | February 9, 2010 8:42 PM | Report abuse

On that TSN injury site that CapsFan75 posted I see it lists Steve Ott out 3-4 weeks due to an appendectomy. Wasn't our gang on CI wishing to get Ott in a trade? Looks like he's unavailable until close to or after the trade deadline.

Posted by: tess2201 | February 9, 2010 8:46 PM | Report abuse

You know, some have knocked Niedermayer, but you can go back and watch Caps vs Ducks a few weeks back. I remember one sequence where Ovi went to check Niedermayer but bounced off. I said, "OK, wow, that guy's still got it for such an old guy."

And then I realized Niedermayer was like 15 years younger than I am and, I can get affadavids if you want, but I can tell you (OK, I can tell the ladies) that I still got it too.

37 ain't old.

Posted by: tominfl1 | February 9, 2010 8:46 PM | Report abuse

correction:
"wasn't someone in our gang on CI..."

Posted by: tess2201 | February 9, 2010 8:48 PM | Report abuse

@tominfl & ccCapsfan

The Umberger to Flash comparison:

1) Umberger is slightly better offensively

2) Umberger is 2 years older

3) Umberger has a high minus rating. Granted, Columbus hasn't been a very good team but he doesn't really sound like a defensive upgrade to Flash

4) Umberger probably has more experience as a center

Balance: making that trade would be questionable.

BTW, can Flash actually speak Russian, in addition to his native Czech? Well, they are both Slavic languages. I'm sure it used to be required for Czechs to learn Russian except Tomas was a little boy when the SU fell.

Posted by: CapsFan75 | February 9, 2010 8:49 PM | Report abuse

@tess2201

I can't recall who it was that was proposing we get Ott. Maybe it was on Japers. I recall the discussion on Ott also suggested coming up with nicknames for him too.

Okay, Otter, of course. (And the main thing I associate with the last name of Ott was a former baseball player on the Giants named Mel Ott.) I presume Ott is a German last name.

Posted by: CapsFan75 | February 9, 2010 8:52 PM | Report abuse

IF we were to get a guy from the Blues the guy I would want is Jay McClement. He is currently leading forwards in the NHL in PK time per game. I don't know if he is much of a hitter but he seems to be a guy that will help our PK.

Posted by: icehammer97 | February 9, 2010 8:54 PM | Report abuse

Some comparative stats on Umberger vs. Flash. Here's the last two years when Flash is a regular. Keep in mind, Flash plays about 2 mins per game less than RJ, so his per min production is even comparatively better.

Umberger:
GA G A T +/-
2008-2009 CLS 82 26 20 46 -10
2009-2010 CLS 60 19 22 41 -16

Flash:

2008-2009 WAS 73 19 18 37 -3
2009-2010 WAS 48 17 24 41 9

Posted by: ccCapsfan | February 9, 2010 8:56 PM | Report abuse

Update on TSN.

Green's status has now been updated to "probable". It is no longer questionable.

Gee whiz, is Boudreau reading the stuff here and on Japers? Or did he reach the same conclusion independently?

As in "Who the h*** will be the 6th defense man?"

Posted by: CapsFan75 | February 9, 2010 8:57 PM | Report abuse

@CapsFan75: I'm with you, guy. I was making the same point about Flash being able to speak Russian with Sasha. I think it's a significant plus.

Posted by: ccCapsfan | February 9, 2010 8:59 PM | Report abuse

whether or not Niedermayer would help the Caps in the playoffs is not even debatable, he may not be what he was a few year ago but he's still better than Sloan, Erskine, Pothier and ShaMo thus would immediately upgrade the defense.

the question is how much would it cost to get him, not would he help...

Posted by: joek443 | February 9, 2010 9:00 PM | Report abuse

@joek443: Re: Nieds

If we can get him for the equivalent of Ted Ruth, it's a no-brainer. If we have to give up young talent we are counting on, not so much.

Posted by: ccCapsfan | February 9, 2010 9:08 PM | Report abuse

@ccCapsfan

Thanks for posting the statistical comparison between Flash and Umberger. I was looking at the Yahoo entry on Umberger when writing my comparison.

BTW, I'm actually female.

Posted by: CapsFan75 | February 9, 2010 9:09 PM | Report abuse

Checking out Tkachuk on Versus against the Wings tonight. I will say this for him: he is one big effin' body and he likes to hang out in front of the net.

Posted by: ccCapsfan | February 9, 2010 9:11 PM | Report abuse

@CapsFan75: Sorry about that, chief. ;^)

Posted by: ccCapsfan | February 9, 2010 9:12 PM | Report abuse

One last point against Umberger: he is a native of Pittsburgh. He probably grew up a Penguins fan. Yucky!

Posted by: ccCapsfan | February 9, 2010 9:16 PM | Report abuse

@underpants2

Don't agree with trading Alzner and a 1st rounder for Selanne and Neidermeyer. Maybe the jury's still out on Alzner but I feel that Alzner and Carlson are both the long term key to upgrading our blue line.

Posted by: CapsFan75 | February 9, 2010 9:19 PM | Report abuse

@ccCapsfan

But then he played for the Flyers before the Blue Jackets.

Posted by: CapsFan75 | February 9, 2010 9:23 PM | Report abuse

Just got the latest issue of Hockey News today and there's a good article about Ovi vs. Sid. For those who don't subscribe, here's a good section:

Crosby said asking how he feels about Ovechkin is, "like asking me if I'm going to be best friends with five guys on the Flyers. That's probably not going to happen.

"He and I aren't perimeter players. He plays a physical game and I play hard, too. To say we absolutely hate each other, I don't think so, but we're competitive guys and that's kind of the result of everything and how it's been built up."

Ovechkin doesn't hate Crosby either, and he would probably go as hard at Crosby as he would at Malkin or Eric Staal or Mike Richards.

"I respect him as a person," Ovechkin said, "but when I step on the ice, I respect only my teammates."

Posted by: tess2201 | February 9, 2010 9:31 PM | Report abuse

One thing Umberger vs Flash for this year's stats:

Flash's stats are way better playing for Caps than if he played for CBJ and RJ's stats for CBJ are way worse than if he played say on Semin line.

I am remebering the snarling RJU from the Filthy days and I am saying he is not only a fair trade for Flash but that deal takes away what we have in abundance in exchange for waht we need (grit).

Perron just scored with Kariya camped out in front. How many gallons in Kariya's tank?

As for Ott and appendectomy...I had one back in 98 and the doctor said six weeks and I was back at work the next week. OK, bent over some. Honestly, three weeks is plenty. They slice you and pull the muscle apart but it is way less severe than a knee operation. Three weeks I was playing volleyball so just give him a pill and get him back on the ice.

Posted by: tominfl1 | February 9, 2010 9:33 PM | Report abuse

@CapsFan75: Yes, he has been a regular much longer than Flash. His third year in Philly was really crappy which is why they dumped him. I think we know exactly what Umberger is while we still see an upward arc with Flash. For pro athletes, their best statistical years are usually between 25 and 29 (although with improved conditioning guys maintain peak performance longer). Umberger only has 2 of those years left and, again, we know pretty much what his upside is. Flash has 4 of those years left and he's on the rise.

Posted by: ccCapsfan | February 9, 2010 9:36 PM | Report abuse

tominfl1 he just got his first goal at home this year now

Posted by: icehammer97 | February 9, 2010 9:38 PM | Report abuse

"I respect him as a person," Ovechkin said (of Crosby), "but when I step on the ice, I respect only my teammates."

Posted by: tess2201 | February 9, 2010 9:31 PM

Man, that's some good stuff. I'll be thinking of that line about six am tomorrow. Do any of you work for Boeing, Northrup Grumman or Raytheon? Sorry, folks, I might respect you all as people, but when I step into that office, I respect only my corporate mates.

LMC! LMC!

Posted by: tominfl1 | February 9, 2010 9:43 PM | Report abuse

@tominfl: I think the snarling is part of the Flyer persona. I'm not convinced that a guy like Umberger on the Caps is a snarler. He would be busy skating as hard as he can trying to keep up with Semin. I know there is sentiment that we need some grit, but I don't know if BB really allows the kind of crap that passes for grit on Philly.

Posted by: ccCapsfan | February 9, 2010 9:48 PM | Report abuse

OK, folks, here's a thought experiment for you. Nick Lidstrom is 39 years old. Detroit is really old and possibly not really a threat for the Cup this year. If they offered you Lidstrom for Alzner, Neuvirth and #1, would you do it? What would you trade for Lidstrom at age 39?

Posted by: ccCapsfan | February 9, 2010 9:51 PM | Report abuse

Kariya scored? I was busy yakking away on the computer. First goal at home for the year?

Man, doesn't sound like much in the tank.

I just want the Caps to get more guys with no teeth. Dougie Gilmour didn't have teeth and boy was he tough. Bobby Hull didn't have teeth and he could really score. Bernie Nicholls had teeth but he could only score in the regular season.

As Ovechkin loses more teeth, he'll only get better.

Teeth are really very overrated...

Posted by: tominfl1 | February 9, 2010 9:55 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: ccCapsfan | February 9, 2010 10:00 PM | Report abuse

Lidstrom for Alzner, Neuvirth and #1, would you do it? What would you trade for Lidstrom at age 39?

Posted by: ccCapsfan | February 9, 2010 9:51 PM

NFW. Over my dead body they'd make that trade. Not unless Jesus appears in my dream and guarantees it gives us the Chalice this year. Unless I have a vision of Jesus at center ice, handing the Cup to Ovi, do I give up that much for Lidstrom, whose tank is down to fumes.

Posted by: tominfl1 | February 9, 2010 10:01 PM | Report abuse

Umberger could fit--at least in the room--with his former Philly teammate Knubs.

I can see how he might bring benefits to the Caps--just not certain we should be trading a roster player (e.g., Flash) for him.

As for Kariya, I have always admired his speed and perseverence, but IMHO he's too small to accomplish what we're looking for...and we're doing just fine with BMo, thank you.

Selanne? quite the hockey stud in his day, but probably too old (and too expensive) now.

Posted by: Rhino40 | February 9, 2010 10:04 PM | Report abuse

@tominfl: I agree with you that it's too much. Still, Lidstrom is +21 on team that has 64 points. You seem to love Niedermayer (formerly one of my all-time favorite players) and he at age 36 is -17 with a team that has 63 points.

Posted by: ccCapsfan | February 9, 2010 10:09 PM | Report abuse

u go tominfl -u r on a roll and i am on my second martini - no work for me tomorrow. staying home and praying the roof doesn't cave in.

Posted by: ebolean1 | February 9, 2010 10:12 PM | Report abuse

@tominfl1

LOL I'm never going to feel the same about teeth again.

I hate change but I could see some possible movement with some of our d-guys but IMHO leave the top four lines alone. We finally have four consistent lines, the guys are all scoring at different times, and they have developed chemistry. And they have won fourteen games. I think these lines are working.

And I don't want to lose Alzner, Carlson, Varly, Neuvi, Holtby (and I consider Green and Schultz untouchable). I want eventually to see an Alzner/Carlson pairing like they had at Hershey and we still don't know which goalie will end up being the best and most suitable for this team.

My two cents--take it for what's it worth. But I really like the team as it is now, from Ovi down. It's been a thrilling ride thus far. (And I really hate change!).

Posted by: Capsyoungguns | February 9, 2010 10:14 PM | Report abuse

On the possible Green benching news:

TSN has updated their injury list to say that Green is probable for tomorrow. So the disciplinary benching is likely not happening -- at least not for the whole game.

Given the fact we just don't have the personnel to pull it off at the present time. Plus, it is also not characteristic of Boudreau, anyhow.

Posted by: CapsFan75 | February 9, 2010 10:15 PM | Report abuse

@ tominfl yeah he is one of the many reasons why the Blues have the worst home record in the NHL for some reason they just can't score at home.

@ccCapsfan I am a Red Wings fan as well as a Caps fan so I have seen almost every Red Wings game this season. As a Caps fan I would not want to make that trade at all. Varly has had some injury problems so relying on him and Holtby (who may be great but has no NHL experience) is a little scary. Alzner could very easily be a top 4 D man as early as next season. Just the two of them is already too much for Lidstrom but then you add a number one pick way too much. As a Red Wings fan this is probably the only time I would ever want them to trade him. I think a better trade would be Fehr, Poti, and Anton Gustafsson. Poti would replace Lidstrom on the point in Detroit while not being as good he would be a solid addition to the team. The other two would add to the youth forward movement that the Red Wings have been trying to do this year since they are not scoing many goals and are playing guys like May and Drew Miller. I also think with all of the Sweeds on the team Anton Gustafsson would be much more likely to come over to the NHL and be successful which he doesn't seem to be doing with the Caps.

All that being said there is no way Detroit trades

Posted by: icehammer97 | February 9, 2010 10:18 PM | Report abuse

Lidstrom

Don't know why that cut off on the last post

Posted by: icehammer97 | February 9, 2010 10:20 PM | Report abuse

@icehammer97: Are you sold on Jimmy Howard?

Posted by: ccCapsfan | February 9, 2010 10:23 PM | Report abuse

@icehammer97: I saw that as a kick. What about you?

Posted by: ccCapsfan | February 9, 2010 10:26 PM | Report abuse

I don't think either Nieds or Lidstrom will be available, they will probably stay with their current teams... the ducks and the wings will probably pass the preds and the flames in standings before the season ends and make the playoffs

of course you could get them but would have to give up quite a bit and I can't see GMGM making such a bold move

Posted by: joek443 | February 9, 2010 10:28 PM | Report abuse

Well, Tkachuk just single-handedly gave Detroit the tying goal with 2 minutes left. I'm guessing we don't need that kind of help.

Posted by: ccCapsfan | February 9, 2010 10:31 PM | Report abuse

ccCapsFan: No, I don't love Niedermayer, I just think, like Lidstrom, he is better than some we have. And he still has toughness.

I wouldn't give up Alzner, Neuvy and a #1 for either, although maybe after a few more tequilas and OJ (and that after a bottle of wine) I'd give up all three for BOTH players (and then only with the above guarantee from that robed individual Who could turn water into even MORE wine).

capsyoungguns: You can stop if you want, typing out Alzner, Carlson, Neuvy, Varly and Holtby. I have coined a phraise for them, collectively, that you can use: Fab Five; as in, "Caps shouldn't trade any of the Fab Five."

Sometimes it just seems that I am so full of...well...something, you know?

Yes, teeth are vastly overrated, at least on hockey players and, well, now we're getting to my bucket list, for when I'm in the old folks home, or maybe even sooner.

Posted by: tominfl1 | February 9, 2010 10:33 PM | Report abuse

@ ccCapsfan for the kick question it looked to me like he was turning and the puck went off the skate. He didn't move his skate toward the net like you would to kick the puck in.

As for Howard, yes I am 100% sold on him. It is hard not to. He keeps the team in games when they are giving up 40 shots a game which Detroit has not done in a very long time. He is 9th in the NHL in GAA ahead of guys like Roberto Luongo and Henrik Lundqvist and 6th in SV% ahead of guys like Miikka Kiprusoff and the two he is ahead of in GAA. The only place he seems to struggle is in shootouts like he did tonight. As long as he doesn't face too many breakaway/shootouts he is a very solid goalie and is the only reason Detroit is still in the race in the West. And this is coming from a guy with a Chris Osgood poster in my dining room.

Posted by: icehammer97 | February 9, 2010 10:51 PM | Report abuse

Just went out to shovel...6 inches so far in southern York county near the Maryland line.

Posted by: tess2201 | February 9, 2010 11:05 PM | Report abuse

@icehammer97: Datsyuk was looking right at the pass, lifted his skate and angled it to direct the puck. But it was subtle enough that because it was the Wings it was a goal. I haven't seen much of Howard but he looked pretty solid tonight, although it took his friend Mr. Post to save him in the OT.

Posted by: ccCapsfan | February 9, 2010 11:10 PM | Report abuse

Tom/Phil:

Concerning your bet about Kovy, better calculate what 10 mil is in rubles. My money says he goes to the KHL next year.

Posted by: CAP-lanta | February 9, 2010 11:44 PM | Report abuse

When you get a chance, read Mike Wise's column for tomorrow's Post (online now, on the main page) about the upcoming Olympic break and its possible impact on the Caps. I've never been so depressed after reading a sports article.....

Posted by: DevilsCapsGal | February 9, 2010 11:46 PM | Report abuse

@ccCapsfan The current rules allow for moving the skate to deflect it in as long as there is not a driect kicking motion toward the net.

As for Howard he did get some help from the post in OT but in regulation Mason got saved by a D's stick otherwise the puck goes in the empty net. Howard did however make that amazing save on the 2-1 in OT and has kept Detroit in games day in and day out when they are giving up 40 shots a game. In the last few games he held Nashville to 2 goals on 48 shots in a game the Wings had to win since they are directly batteling them in the standings. He also only let in one until the shootout against the Pens while making 46 saves.

Howard is carrying the team right now. Osgood hasn't won a game since December 12th. Since he became the number one goalie in late November he has been named ESPN's top performer for Detroit in 20 games. Also I don't see him having a Mason like fall off since he has had plenty of time to develop in Grand Rapids so he has faced adversity and will not start to crack like Mason has at the first sign of trouble.

Posted by: icehammer97 | February 10, 2010 1:08 AM | Report abuse

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