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Healthy Joe Finley ready to establish himself as a pro


Joe Finley during rookie camp in 2009. (John McDonnell -TWP)


On the third day of rookie camp here at Kettler Capitals Iceplex, defenseman Joe Finley has been making a name for himself by using his size (6-7, 229 pounds) to turn back charging forwards at the blueline.

But Finley, 23, knows he'll face a different challenge if given the opportunity to skate alongside Capitals and Bears veterans when training camp opens Saturday, and it's then that the defenseman, now healthy, wants to demonstrate that he's ready for a substantial role in the American Hockey League.

"I want to show that I'm comfortable with the pace of the game," Finley said. "To go out there and demand to take control in the defensive zone. It might be easier to do that this week with some of the younger guys, but I'm looking forward to main camp. The name of the game for me is to just stay healthy, work and adapt to the pro lifestyle. I got a taste of it last year, but this almost is my first pro season again."

Finley, who suffered a concussion during his time at North Dakota, was sidelined by a hip flexor injury in last year's rookie camp.

Then, in November, a freak arm injury ended his season with the ECHL's South Carolina Stingrays just 17 games into the season. While cross-checking an opponent, he suffered a ruptured aneurysm of the ulnar artery, the main artery in the forearm, which cut off blood flow to his pinkie and ring finger in his left hand.

"They removed a vein from the wrist and put it in my hand," he said. "It was a long recovery process, a sixth month minimum before they let you put any pressure on it again. That being said, I have to look back and count my blessings that it wasn't anything in the lower extremities. It never kept me from doing any leg work and working on my strength."

So far the towering defensman has garnered praise from Coach Bruce Boudreau, and looked glad to be back on the blueline. The Capitals experimented with Finley at forward in last year's rookie camp, but he played defense during his stint with the Stingrays.

Boudreau said he expects Finley to play in Hershey, and Bears Coach Mark French agrees this will likely be a key year for the defenseman's development.

"I think the transition to go back and play defense brought back a comfort level for him," French said. "He's added a willingness to fill a tough role, which is something he'll need to do at his size, and if he plays as abrasive as he can for a 6-7 defenseman, he'll be a big asset. I think the biggest challenge for him is to play at a high enough pace. He's a big guy and his speed needs to continue to improve, but I think you'll see a jump in himat the American League level." ...

The largest group of veterans to date was out on the ice early this morning at KCI for an involuntary workout. With the arrival of Tom Poti and Karl Alzner, the only Washington regulars who haven't made an appearance yet are Alex Ovechkin, Alexander Semin and Tyler Sloan. Ovechkin is expected in town after his obligations for the NHL media tour in New York City wrap up. Mike Green is participating in the New York media tour as well. ...

If you haven't already checked out today's story for the hard copy edition, take a look at the support network for young Russian players within the Capitals organization that's helped the prospects transition to a professional hockey career and North America. ...

I'll have more this afternoon after the rookie practice wraps up, so be sure to keep an eye out for that.

By Katie Carrera  |  September 14, 2010; 12:15 PM ET
 
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Next: Tom Poti talks about his eye injury, wearing a visor

Comments

I would love to see Finley gain some speed and develop in Hershey to become that big, nasty D that everyone wants so badly.

Posted by: _Mark | September 14, 2010 12:25 PM | Report abuse

I would too, but within minutes some folks will post that Finley being on the Caps is proof-positive that GMGM is the worst GM in the league

Posted by: JIMALLCAPS1 | September 14, 2010 12:27 PM | Report abuse

frankly, the fact that Finley was even drafted being the project he currently is, proves that GM is the worst GM in the league.

Posted by: cstanton1 | September 14, 2010 12:30 PM | Report abuse

He doesn't look any slower than Schultz to me.

Posted by: zmega | September 14, 2010 12:31 PM | Report abuse

but seriously, i'm ecstatic that Mark French will be in charge of Finley's development. French clearly favors developing an edge to his players' games and he allows his physical players to be physical and take some penalties without fear of being benched. Another reason I want Alzner to spend more time in Hershey.

Posted by: cstanton1 | September 14, 2010 12:31 PM | Report abuse

Hershey with big Joe and Dustin Stevenson in the lineup will have a pretty different look on D this year. Hopefully Stevenson doesn't get demoted to the Stingrays. The Bears have

Nycholat
Fahey
Collins
Wellar
(these 4 are definitely on the roster)

Then Patrick McNeill and Miskovic (recovering from injuries) are 5 and 6.

That leaves Finley, Stevenson, Yeo, Kroll, and Godfrey to fight it out for the 7th and 8th spots. Besides Joe, this also may be Godfrey's final audition to show he can step up to the AHL level. Otherwise the 2007 draft will also look like a failed experiment with only Alzner to show for it.

Posted by: cstanton1 | September 14, 2010 12:44 PM | Report abuse

That didn't take long. Now it's time to cue our daily vitriol that has become the dominant theme of this blog -- so, yeah, it's a blog

Posted by: JIMALLCAPS1 | September 14, 2010 12:46 PM | Report abuse

Katie I loved the story on the Russians. Keep up the great work. Tell what's his name. Tar...no El debarge...no...see we're forgetting the past already.

Posted by: Berndaddy | September 14, 2010 12:57 PM | Report abuse

Souray on the way to us? Hope not

Posted by: lylewimbledon | September 14, 2010 12:58 PM | Report abuse

Souray on the way to us? Hope not

Posted by: lylewimbledon

----
uuuuumm, What?

Posted by: FrankM73 | September 14, 2010 1:02 PM | Report abuse

@Frank

He will not be attending Oilers camp and is being mentioned to be traded to us, NYR or NYI.

Posted by: lylewimbledon | September 14, 2010 1:04 PM | Report abuse

An FYI...last week when Bruce was asked about Belanger he said there was nothing to it. Today when he was asked, his response was "when does camp start? I'll know then."

Posted by: ThePat | September 14, 2010 1:08 PM | Report abuse

marc staal hasn't signed right? And Sather has a good relationship with Kevin Lowe so maybe thats the trade which makes most sense.

Posted by: cstanton1 | September 14, 2010 1:09 PM | Report abuse

@lyle

C'mon dude- it's Eklund. You know better than that.

Posted by: Fro_ | September 14, 2010 1:13 PM | Report abuse

Why would any team trade Souray if they could have claimed him off waivers beforehand.

The only way a team trades for him is if either the Oilers accept a terrible contract(the Caps don't really have any that are on the Souray level of $5.4M) or the Oilers include picks/prospect/or other players.

Given Souray's salary cap hit for TWO more years I think it is highly unlikely he heads to the Caps.

Posted by: sgm3 | September 14, 2010 1:14 PM | Report abuse

@cstanton1

Staal will be signed in the next 36 hours. Take that to the bank.

Posted by: ThePat | September 14, 2010 1:15 PM | Report abuse

"the only Washington regulars who haven't made an appearance yet are Alex Ovechkin, Alexander Semin and Tyler Sloan"

did anyone look for sloan in the press box over at the phone booth?

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | September 14, 2010 1:17 PM | Report abuse

I saw it somewhere else, but maybe they are stealing from Eklund - i do know better...would hate to see it come true...nasty contract for the exact opposite of the defenseman we need.

Posted by: lylewimbledon | September 14, 2010 1:18 PM | Report abuse

@cstanton1

Staal will be signed in the next 36 hours. Take that to the bank
--

it'll be interesting to see if he gets what Shea Weber is making currently. Can't see the Rangers paying Staal more than 5 mil per season unless its a short deal.

Posted by: cstanton1 | September 14, 2010 1:20 PM | Report abuse

nasty contract for the exact opposite of the defenseman we need.
--

why is he the opposite lyle? just curious

Posted by: cstanton1 | September 14, 2010 1:21 PM | Report abuse

anyone want to guess at Staal's apparently impending contract?

i say 5 yrs at 22.5 mil. Average of any contract does not exceed 4.5 mil/season. If length is 2 yrs or below, I say 2 yrs at 9.5 mil

Posted by: cstanton1 | September 14, 2010 1:24 PM | Report abuse

Wow, that 2007 draft class does look pretty bad.

I think I'm ready to call that a failure. Not on the level of 2005, but a failure none the less.

...and my gut tells me Alzner isn't going to live up to expectations. Sure hope I'm wrong about that.

Posted by: wtf_e_fehr | September 14, 2010 1:33 PM | Report abuse

I liked the article about the Russians.

Posted by: wtf_e_fehr | September 14, 2010 1:40 PM | Report abuse

Well I wish Finley the best of luck. He's going to need it. The good news is he really improved yearly in his development years at North Dakota. Of course I only got to see 4 or 5 games a year on TV. The bad news is he was/is a raw recruit. I'd like to see him make it. But, I've always questioned whether he'd ever be NHL material.

Green and Ovechkin are in the NY media thing and Green is here, but Ovechkin isn't. hmm... I wonder if that means that Greenie isn't getting the love. :)

Posted by: BetterOffWithFedorov | September 14, 2010 2:12 PM | Report abuse

So the possible trade rumors still floating around are Souray, Salvador, and our fantasy of Zajac correct?

It seems all other rumors seem to have ebbed a bit. Bieksa I assume if anything happens will be after the season kicks off.

I've been following the Devil's boards to see if they get any wiffs of trade rumors. It's funny to see how they all seem to act like they are victims of some big conspiracy and did nothing wrong in the Kovy situation. Haha, man I love Jersey folk...they crack me up. FIST PUMP

Posted by: SeminAllOverTheIce | September 14, 2010 2:18 PM | Report abuse

...and my gut tells me Alzner isn't going to live up to expectations. Sure hope I'm wrong about that.
------------

my gut's told me that since about 6 months after we drafted him. But then you look around and no one else feels that way. Everything about Alzner describes him as "an elite shutdown defenseman". So I'll stand on file and say that I think Alzner's potential isn't anywhere near as good as he's made out to be. And frankly, he'll look overmatched this coming season as well if he gets promoted. I did think he looked decent v the Habs in limited action so I hope that's a truer reflection of him. But from what I can see of him, he doesn't look impresssive. Nowhere near a Carlson.

Posted by: cstanton1 | September 14, 2010 2:22 PM | Report abuse

why did the Devils get a penalty though? The league's rules don't stipulate anything concrete about cap circumvention with regards to what the Devils did. They should've just voided the contract, reclarified the rules, and had NJ issue a new contract for approval. It is a bizarre situation.

Posted by: cstanton1 | September 14, 2010 2:25 PM | Report abuse

Although they both have 7's in their numbers...coincidence? The defense rests.

Posted by: SeminAllOverTheIce | September 14, 2010 2:26 PM | Report abuse

CBA says dont circumvent the cap...they did. NHL called them out on it, arbitrator sided with NHL and said NJ attempted to circumvent the cap, CBA stipulates cap circumvention can/will be penalized. Seems pretty straight forward to me.

Posted by: SeminAllOverTheIce | September 14, 2010 2:31 PM | Report abuse

but how can you be expected not to circumvent the cap when there's nothing specific about the ground rules? Its too subjective. Even though it may appear that the Devils' contract offer wasn't in good faith, i just don't see how its that provable without some parameters to abide by.

Posted by: cstanton1 | September 14, 2010 2:36 PM | Report abuse

And anyone who thinks NJ was acting in good faith, also probably thinks Azteca hired Ines Sainz as their sports reporter purely for her sports knowledge. :)

Posted by: SeminAllOverTheIce | September 14, 2010 2:42 PM | Report abuse

NJ acted in good faith and Fat Albert loves playing in in the 3-4. What's in their wallet, a bunch of lies, dirty, dirty lies ... now trade us Zajac already.

Posted by: flee001 | September 14, 2010 2:45 PM | Report abuse

Re: Souray to DC or NYI or NYR...

Not so fast, guys. IIRC, Glenn Sather and the Rangers have a history of ridiculously overpaying--how they are even close to staying within the salary cap I don't know.

I think that Souray--if he came to DC--would be at best a poor fit and at worst a cancer in the locker room. Either way, a wase of money and ice time. Of course, that's only my opinion...I could be wrong.

I expect he'll end up A) at NYR for reasons described above, B) at NYI to get them to the Salary floor, or C) retiring/playing in the KHL.

I'd much rather have Bieksa and/or Regehr.

Posted by: Rhino40 | September 14, 2010 2:46 PM | Report abuse

*waste

Posted by: Rhino40 | September 14, 2010 2:50 PM | Report abuse

Azteca oughta give the little hottie a raise. She put them on the map. I'm still waiting for this politically-correctedness age to move on by. Its been around too long now.

Posted by: cstanton1 | September 14, 2010 2:53 PM | Report abuse

As for Souray I would love to see this trade happen ...

"If it is Washington - Sheldon Souray and Andrew Cogliano for Tom Poti and Tomas Fleischmann." http://www.hockeybuzz.com/blog/Richard-Cloutier/Im-so-Souray-Im-so-Souray/131/30158

Flash gone, Cogliano takes his place competing for 2C space (maybe 3C) and he's young while Souray is upgrade to Poti.

Posted by: flee001 | September 14, 2010 3:01 PM | Report abuse

I've never heard that Souray has been a "cancer" in any locker room. He's always been one of the leaders from what I've heard or read. He was a co-captain with TriCities when he played. He was always considered a solid character guy when he played with the Devils farm team and later on the Devils.

I guess people can always change but he's never been known as a headcase or a guy that other players didn't like. I thought he was also being considered to replace Ethan Moreau as team captain until all this went down and I think he got named alternate captain anyway.

I remember when Adam Oates, one of more well-respected captains of his time got tagged as a locker room cancer with the Caps. Konowalchuk was another high-character player who was disgruntled with the way our org was heading and with the state of the locker room. So, its not always cut and dry.

I don't know where the Souray=cancer talk sprang from but I have to question its basis.

Posted by: cstanton1 | September 14, 2010 3:05 PM | Report abuse

I don't, trading Poti away keeps Erskine/Sloan on the roster. And from what I hear, we dont want Cogliano. IF we are trading for Souray, the Oilers have no real bargaining chips and should be abused as such.

Posted by: SeminAllOverTheIce | September 14, 2010 3:07 PM | Report abuse

cstanton: I can't recall all the accolades Alzner earned while in Juniors. I think he was WHl D-Man of the Year and captained the Canadian U20 team. First-team WHL all-star, maybe even first-team Canadian Junior All-Star. At the draft, I remember the commentators saying the Caps got he best pure defenseman in the draft.

If he turns out to be average, it means he will have fooled everyone.

I am hoping he turns out to be a Calle Jo type. That would be fine.

Posted by: tominsocal1 | September 14, 2010 3:07 PM | Report abuse

the only reason he'd be a bad fit is because he tends to be unpredictable on the ice with his temper and this team is all about restraint in every capacity.

That same quality also makes him valuable because other players don't act up around him very often. You don't see too many forwards digging for rebounds when Souray's around because you never know when he'll just snap and tear someone's head off. And he'd have absolutely no qualms about knocking the living daylights out of a Crosby because he can handle himself against almost any heavyweight in hockey.

Posted by: cstanton1 | September 14, 2010 3:09 PM | Report abuse

Alzner will be a fine 3-5 D. Sadly his draft position says he should be more, but take him for what he is. On the flip side look at where Carlson is, would you like to have him be what his position dictates?

As for Souray being a cancer, no way. A guy can be upset with his situation but Edm gave him the money so deal with it. He got paid, got hurt and is no longer wanted but they went after him. Guys like T. Owens, Haynesworth, Avery ... these are cancer guys.

Posted by: flee001 | September 14, 2010 3:12 PM | Report abuse

but how can you be expected not to circumvent the cap when there's nothing specific about the ground rules? Its too subjective. Even though it may appear that the Devils' contract offer wasn't in good faith, i just don't see how its that provable without some parameters to abide by.

Posted by: cstanton1

Scary, but I actually agree with cstanton1 on this.

Posted by: sgm3 | September 14, 2010 3:13 PM | Report abuse

I heard someone pitch the idea that if Belanger does not come over, then we keep Johanson and Matty and rotate them as 2nd and 3rd line centers...could potentially be a good thing...at least for the first part of the season.

Posted by: capscoach | September 14, 2010 3:14 PM | Report abuse

cstanton: I can't recall all the accolades Alzner earned while in Juniors. I think he was WHl D-Man of the Year and captained the Canadian U20 team. First-team WHL all-star, maybe even first-team Canadian Junior All-Star. At the draft, I remember the commentators saying the Caps got he best pure defenseman in the draft.

If he turns out to be average, it means he will have fooled everyone.
--------------------


he was the beneficiary of being part of a horrible draft class, esp on D. There weren't that many options. He was a classic Caps pick - he's calm on the ice, he doesn't take penalties, poised, blah blah blah. How that translates into actual results is still open for debate. I would've opted for Ryan McDonagh in that draft only because he's more physically mature (i.e. much stronger frame) and he's got a mean streak in him and can skate well like Alzner can. So he offers the same defensive abilities with a lot more toughness. The Habs drafted him in the 1st round, the Rangers acquired him as part of the Scott Gomez trade and signed him a few weeks ago. If you're looking for a tough stay-at-home quality dman prospect, McDonagh to me more closely fits the bill than does Alzner. Alzner still looks physically overmatched. McDonagh at least strength-wise is much closer to being nhl-ready.

Posted by: cstanton1 | September 14, 2010 3:18 PM | Report abuse

but how can you be expected not to circumvent the cap when there's nothing specific about the ground rules? Its too subjective. Even though it may appear that the Devils' contract offer wasn't in good faith, i just don't see how its that provable without some parameters to abide by.

Posted by: cstanton1

Scary, but I actually agree with cstanton1 on this.

Posted by: sgm3
----
FrankM73 Sidenote: hell has indeed frozen over as I to agree with both above... weird! Shades of grey give too much power to the NHL!

Posted by: FrankM73 | September 14, 2010 3:21 PM | Report abuse

Alzner will be a fine 3-5 D. Sadly his draft position says he should be more, but take him for what he is. On the flip side look at where Carlson is, would you like to have him be what his position dictates?
---------------------

i agree that his draft position alone shouldn't dictate that he needs to be a top pairing player. If he ends up being a #4 dman and is effective at what he's supposed to do (and we all have different ideas for what is of course), I'll be happy. My judgment on him so far has nothing to do with his draft position or pre-draft accolades and everything to do with how he looks on the ice. He skates well enough for the NHL. And he appears poised. Aside from those 2 things and a few other minor aspects of his game, I am not impressed. He's a very very passive player on D. He's unable to step up in the neutral zone, he's always skating backwards and conceding room on the ice. Which is something he didn't do very much of in the WHL. If you look at his WHL tapes, you can see quite a few instances of him stepping and making at least a light hit along the boards outside the blueline. But his play at Hershey and with the Caps shows he's all about retreating and giving a forward a lot of room. Then when he finally closes in on his man, he just wraps his arm around him instead of being able to push him off the puck. You can make a case that with more confidence etc he'll turn into a more effective blueliner who can force a forward to get rid of the puck before he wants to, or actually separate the forward from the puck. But I'm skeptical that will happen. And he's utterly useless in the crease area as are most of our other dmen. He shows no urgency or tenacity 3 feet away from his goalie. Another guy I wouldn't want to go into the trenches with.

bah!

Posted by: cstanton1 | September 14, 2010 3:27 PM | Report abuse

Alzner is known as a team leader though as he has captained many of the teams he has been on, including the Canadian Junior team. That can't be discounted.

The Caps need at least one of those types on the blue line. It does not appear that Green and Schultz have that type of personality.

Posted by: sgm3 | September 14, 2010 3:32 PM | Report abuse

looking at the Pens lineup this coming yr, they look pretty damn good and balanced. How do you think our lines and D stack up to this?

Kunitz-Staal-Malkin
Comrie-Crosby-Dupuis/Tangradi
Cooke-Talbot-Kennedy
Rupp-Adams-Asham/Godard

D
Paul Martin-Zbynek Michalek
Brooks Orpik-Kris Letang
Alex Goligoski-Ben Lovejoy/Engelland (tough kids)

Posted by: cstanton1 | September 14, 2010 3:37 PM | Report abuse

@cstanton1

4-0 again

Posted by: SeminAllOverTheIce | September 14, 2010 3:43 PM | Report abuse

imo you can't have enough leader types. In hockey it doesn't seem to be a "too many captains spoil the broth" scenario. So its good that Alzner has been picked as a leader. But he's not a fiery leader in any way, at least not on the ice. He seems very quiet. I question if that's the type this team really needs.

imo, this team needs a physical veteran type who plays with a real warrior mentality. And i'll take two if you got em.

Posted by: cstanton1 | September 14, 2010 3:43 PM | Report abuse

cstanton: The only thing is that Alzner dominated at the WHL level, which usually for defensemen translates to being near NHL ready. I of course never watched him play while he was at Juniors. Surely though he must possess something that made him captain everywhere he played and so successful. I'm thinking he's just being timid. I see your point re: not being physical but that wasn't a problem at 18 and 19 for him. Did he stop getting stronger earlier than other kids and they passed him by? He's also dominated to some extent at AHL. I really think he needs another 40 games at Hershey to really prove he's ready and to give him extra confidence. For whatever reason, Carlson already has the confidence. It's too soon though IMO to say for sure Alzner won't be Carlson's equal defensively.

Posted by: tominsocal1 | September 14, 2010 3:46 PM | Report abuse

Does it bug anyone else that Sloan (who most of us think doesn't even belong on an NHL roster) hasn't shown up yet?

By the way, Alzner will be just fine... bank on it.

Posted by: chombie13 | September 14, 2010 3:51 PM | Report abuse

tom--
remember Alzner's comments at the start of last season. He admitted he had to change his style of play to be successful at the nhl level. He said that in juniors he was able to be successful playing a largely non-physical style because he had an advantage over most of the other kids. I guess he meant he wasn't at a strength disadvantage that he encountered when making the transition to the pro game. Now that he is at a strength disadvantage, he isn't finding as much success playing his original style that he got comfortable with.

i'm paraphrasing here but this is my recollection of his comments. I like that he said that. I'm just not seeing it in his game. It looks like he started off with the intent to play that way, then backed off.

Posted by: cstanton1 | September 14, 2010 3:53 PM | Report abuse

I for one am hoping he is at home starting to pack boxes. And therefore am not bugged.

Posted by: SeminAllOverTheIce | September 14, 2010 3:54 PM | Report abuse

Alzner is needed for that nasty playoff beard ... nuff said.

Sloan is in mid-season form as stated earlier in this thread. He's chillin in press box watching drills.

Posted by: flee001 | September 14, 2010 3:54 PM | Report abuse

my surprise prediction for the season

--Tyler Sloan will turn some heads and look serviceable this upcoming season.

Posted by: cstanton1 | September 14, 2010 3:54 PM | Report abuse

@cstanton1

By asking those in the new club seats if they would like another vodka tonic?

Posted by: SeminAllOverTheIce | September 14, 2010 3:59 PM | Report abuse

The Pens 3rd line with Staal centering it was a great 3rd line that could also score a decent amount of goals. If Talbot centers Cooke and Kennedy that would be a significant step down and will turn Pittsburgh into a two line team.

Posted by: sgm3 | September 14, 2010 3:59 PM | Report abuse

@cstanton/others talking about Souray. I think what Eklund has on his blog pretty much sums it up. "a pair of sources told me this summer how last year, during a game, Sheldon asked a teammate 'why am I here?')" I had also seen that somewhere else but since it was there today I quoted it. I don't care what the team situation is asking "why am I here?" Just shows you do not care about the game at all. We don't need him.

@cstanton again. I hope you are right about Sloan. I remember predicted Shultz was going to be a breakout year after being pulled in the playoffs against NY.

Posted by: icehammer97 | September 14, 2010 4:01 PM | Report abuse

About NJ and getting fined ect. After last summer the NHL warned all of the teams that they were pushing it with the Hossa, ect deals and to back off or the NHL would come after you. NJ then came out and announced a deal that made the Hossa look legit. The fact that after they were warned that Hossa and others contracts were very close to the edge they went so far beyond those deals was a slap in the face to the league and their warning. To be honest NJ is lucky that they were able to work a deal where the fine doesn't hurt their cap and the Kovy deal gets to be the last of the now illegal contract. The already got a contract that is now illegal to be passed and didn't have their cap hurt by the fine. They got some credit for the fact that there was not set limit but they still had to be punished.

Posted by: icehammer97 | September 14, 2010 4:10 PM | Report abuse

Souray is not coming to DC for the simple reason of $5.4M for TWO more years. Way too much for the salary cap era.

Posted by: sgm3 | September 14, 2010 4:12 PM | Report abuse

haha at Saito, brutal! I think Sloan will play a bigger role this yr and look better, you can all tell me how wrong i was when he's in the press box serving appletinis

-----------
The Pens 3rd line with Staal centering it was a great 3rd line that could also score a decent amount of goals. If Talbot centers Cooke and Kennedy that would be a significant step down and will turn Pittsburgh into a two line team.
--

yes, that was a great 3rd line. I made up the lineups based on Ray Shero claiming that Staal would get moved upto Malkin's line. When the dust settles, its very possible that 3rd line will get reunited. Although Talbot ain't no slouch and he's actually healthy this year.

Posted by: cstanton1 | September 14, 2010 4:30 PM | Report abuse

Sheldon asked a teammate 'why am I here?')" I had also seen that somewhere else but since it was there today I quoted it. I don't care what the team situation is asking "why am I here?" Just shows you do not care about the game at all. We don't need him.
-----------

that doesn't equate to him not caring about the game. That's one comment over a career. I can take anything any player has said and turn it into the same argument. Souray has the benefit of being able to call some of his own shots. Any player with his seniority and status can ask to be traded for various reasons , it doesn't equate to them being a locker room cancer. Pronger didn't want to play in Edm either, but no one called him a cancer.

I think the argument against acquiring Souray should be relegated to--

1) cap issues obviously and will a team like Toronto do a claim and trade scenario the way Tom laid out

2) what can he offer us on the ice

His disgruntled atttitude towards the Oilers shouldn't be a factor. Oates, Kono, and Linden didn't want to play with the Caps and they were solid character players who didn't disrupt locker rooms after the trades.

Posted by: cstanton1 | September 14, 2010 4:39 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: YouAreABigWhiner | September 14, 2010 4:47 PM | Report abuse

Guess he was told to look elsewhere and he got snagged up. Are we really going with Flush, Stecks, Gordo in the middle after Backs? Vomit.

Posted by: SeminAllOverTheIce | September 14, 2010 4:52 PM | Report abuse

cstanton: I am with you on Sloan. He has always impressed me as someone limited skill but very well coached. He makes nice plays along the boards to clear the puck from danger. Good guy on the roster as a #6.5 d-man and a 5th line winger.

Posted by: tominsocal1 | September 14, 2010 5:00 PM | Report abuse

I can also understand a veteran player late in his career, on a last-place team, asking that question. Admittedly it "sounds bad." BUT, how many of you at some point in time, at your own careers, didn't at least think the same thing due to an idiotic boss or whatever.

Posted by: tominsocal1 | September 14, 2010 5:03 PM | Report abuse

@cstanton1

OK, so maybe I was over the top in using the word "cancer"...it's just I've seen the Caps come a-cropper with expensive free-agent signings and blockbuster trades before...

I can explain in one word why GMGM has been reticent about pulling the trigger on that Big Deal That Everyone Says Will Clear Out The Dead Weight And Bring In The Elite SAH Blue-Liner And Great 2C That Everyone Says The Caps Need:

Jagr.

Need more proof? Here's more:

Nylander.

Yes, yes, I know that Nyls' refusal to waive his NMC certainly played a part in that wretched squabble. Still...

I'm not saying GMGM's methodology is right or wrong. I'm just saying that it sort of follows given previous outcomes; that it is understandable.

Given the challenges the Caps have faced recently with their PK (and given how much Ø love Ø the Caps get from NHL officials), are you sure you want to add a d-man whose mere reputation could cause the team's aggregate PIM to spike without a corresponding improvement in PK percentage?

Don't get me wrong, I agree with you that we could certainly do with a Real Beast on the Back Line. There's (almost) nothing I'd love better than to see Crosby and his ilk face dire consequences for taking liberties in our zone. Sort of like the stinky glove that Dale Hunter gave Steve Yzerman in '98, only better.

That said, I still think that Souray is too expensive, too injury-prone, and that--if big dollars must be spent--the Caps would get more value spending those dollars acquiring Bieksa and/or Regehr than from picking up Souray...with perhaps less downside as well.


Just saying...

Posted by: Rhino40 | September 14, 2010 5:13 PM | Report abuse

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