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Early chemistry for 'Team C'

Team C won the first scrimmage in the battle for the Duchesne Cup, defeating Team B, 5-0. While it was a decidedly lopsided contest, keep in mind that Team B lifted prior to taking the ice.

All that considered though, Team C's forwards showed a level of chemistry and perhaps no line stood out as much as the one of Jason Chimera, Mathieu Perreault and Eric Fehr, who each scored a goal.

Chimera went top-shelf after using his blistering speed to create space for a breakaway, Fehr smacked in a rebound from another Chimera shot, and Perreault out-maneuvered Tomas Fleischmann to get two of his own rebounds before scoring his goal. The line also had several more prime chances, but faced a rather young defensive group most of its time on the ice.

"I thought they looked really good," Coach Bruce Boudreau said of the line. "Jason with his skating speed is in midseason form right now. He had three breakaways, but there was a young [Group B] defense other than [John] Erskine and [Tom] Poti and I don't think they'd seen speed come at them like that before."

All things considered, with it being only the first scrimmage of the season, Chimera was glad to see his line gel as quickly as it did.

"I played pretty well with Fehrsy last year and me him and [Brendan] Morrison were a pretty good line for the team last year," he said. So it was nice. Matty's the same kind of player as Brendan is. He's gifted offensively he can get the pucks out to us and it's fun."

Here are some other notes and quotes from the third day of training camp:

-- The format for these scrimmages is a 30-minute, running-clock first period; a 20-minute, running-clock second; and a final 10-minute, stop-clock third.

-- Trevor Bruess made himself known early on by flipping Fleischmann into the bench. Later in the scrimmage, Matt Hendricks exacted a little payback on the Bruess with an open-ice hit.

-- The other goals were scored by Brian Fahey and Andrew Gordon, whose tally was the end result of a nifty tic-tac-toe series that began with Keith Aucoin and Samuel Carrier.

-- In his media scrum, Boudreau seemed to hint strongly at the possibility of young defensmen Karl Alzner and John Carlson being paired together in the NHL like they were so much for Hershey.

"That's why we teamed them up from the start of training camp," Boudreau said. "One of the things the Hershey coaches always told us is those two guys have tremendous chemistry together. You could tell in the playoffs, you could tell when they're up here. They're two really good young defensemen and at the same time they don't feel like: Oh I'm playing with this guy I've got to make a great play or he's going to be mad at me. [They're] just young guys trying to find their way and it's good for them."

-- Goaltender Brandon Anderson has been sent back to his junior team, the WHL's Lethbridge Hurricanes. Phillip Grubauer has taken his spot with Group A.

By Katie Carrera  | September 19, 2010; 2:57 PM ET
Categories:  Eric Fehr, Jason Chimera, Mathieu Perreault  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: John Carlson wants the Capitals to rely on him
Next: Jason Chimera showcases his speed in opening days of Capitals camp

Comments

the cup is there for the taking. bb and gmgm are are the best in their respective positions

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | September 19, 2010 3:20 PM | Report abuse

@Capt_kirk

are you being sarcastic ir is there actually someone else out there not calling for their heads? I had assumed I was alone in the universe...maybe not?

Posted by: capscoach | September 19, 2010 4:07 PM | Report abuse

capscoach:
only some sarcasm
my stance is that i have no control over what ted/gmgm/bb do. i'm a fan of the caps so i'll go with whatever they choose whether i agree or not

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | September 19, 2010 4:21 PM | Report abuse

capscoach...you are not alone. I like cherry koolaid as long as it is NOT pre-sweetened. lol

Posted by: nimrodrsp | September 19, 2010 4:23 PM | Report abuse

BTW, despite what you might think, I've never called for McPhee or BB to get fired. I recently put up all teams with better GMs (about a dozen), equal GMs (about ten) and worse GMs (the rest). A team can win with an average GM. BB is mostly a good coach, but he has been outcoached in the Playoffs. That isn't conjecture, it's a fact. I disagree with the likes of cstanton and joek who say Caps can't win. McPhee has done a good enough job with trades and with Ovi and Backie, two of the best, the team can possibly win. I believe even the most ardent Kool-Aid drinkers though admit we need a #1D and even most admit we also need at least one veteran center. If we could get Bieksa for Flash or whatever and then get some center, from somewhere, a Koivu type say, our chances go up, I think, from 8-10% to maybe 15%, about as high as you can expect in Sept. But, if you believe we'll win with the D we have and that Flash is good enough at center, it isn't Kool-Aid you've been comsuming but LSD. :)

I won't drink the Kool Aid and I won't drink the goat's blood. I'm saving myself for wine.

Stay thirsty my friends.

Posted by: tominsocal1 | September 19, 2010 5:45 PM | Report abuse

For those who say Caps can't win: If Carolina and Tampa could win; if Edmonton and Calgary could make to the 7th game; if the Ducks in 2001 or whatever made a Game 7; and if Flyers made Finals last year; then the odds say the Caps "can" win the Cup.

And for the Kool-Aid drinkers: Every Stanley Cup winner back into the 50s has had a better defense, a more balanced team and has likely been stronger at center.

So, bottom line: Caps can win, but haven't done what's needed to increase the odds. The US military has a strategy to not go into battle until the odds are overwhelmingly in their favor. Sometimes you must press down on the gas pedal to do that and we aren't seeing it.

Posted by: tominsocal1 | September 19, 2010 6:00 PM | Report abuse

I said awhile ago that this would be a good line. There is SO much speed between MP and Chimera, and Fehr (from what I have read in my week since I've been back in North America) has had a great off-season conditioning wise.

However, a third line is often called upon to shut down other teams' top lines, and I'm not sure if this line is capable of that nightly. I would love to see them given a chance to prove themselves because that line certainly has a ton of potential to be wicked.

Man do I ever hate the Patriots.

Posted by: Aldred15 | September 19, 2010 6:01 PM | Report abuse

hey Tom, does any of your wine come with screw off caps? My favorite was Boones Farm, Strawberryhill.

Posted by: nimrodrsp | September 19, 2010 6:19 PM | Report abuse

OK, I have nothing better to do, so I'll once more post my Cup odds:

Caps, Pens, Sharks, Canucks 10-12% ea
Wings, Hawks, Bruins, Flyers 8-10% ea
Devils, Kings 5% ea
Other 20 teams 10% total

About every 10 years an outsider wins. Carolina, Tampa and Montreal '93 (which needed NYI to upset Pitt) are the three such events going back to 1974. Every other winner has been a favorite before and during the year.

Unless you are a dynasty team (and even if you are, to a lesser extent), you are going to be subject to hot goalie, bounce of the puck, injury, etc. Are the Caps a dynasty team? They don't look like it. The last three dynasties had d-men like Lowe, Potvin and Robinson anchoring the blueline. The idea is to plug every potential leak beforehand. Have the Caps done that? They have two of the top 5 or 10 offensive forwards and the best offensive defenseman in the game. But is it enough? If it were you, and the gas pedal were under your foot, would you opt for cruise control or would you press down at least a little harder?

Posted by: tominsocal1 | September 19, 2010 6:40 PM | Report abuse

hey Tom, does any of your wine come with screw off caps? My favorite was Boones Farm, Strawberryhill.

Posted by: nimrodrsp | September 19, 2010 6:19 PM

Actually, some rather good wines these days have screw off tops. Many others have the fake corks. Real corks are only needed if the wine is intended for aging more than say 3 years in the bottle. That would mostly be your powerful reds with lots of tannin that require maturing to reach optimum flavor.

You go ahead and drink that stuff, nimrod, that leaves more of the good stuff for me.

Any other questions? :)

Posted by: tominsocal1 | September 19, 2010 6:49 PM | Report abuse

@tominsocal

>>stay thirsty my friends

"I don't always drink a crap beer, but when I do, I drink Dos Equis"

GMGM spot on about Semin: he was a plus player in the series and he generated more offensive opportunities than any other player. (I remember at the time correctly pointing out that Semin had outplayed Backstrom in the last 3 games. This was true if you watch the tape, what I didn't know was that Nicky had a separated shoulder...)


Posted by: dzukijason | September 19, 2010 9:29 PM | Report abuse

love the blurb on Bruess knocking Flash over into the bench! AWESOME! I guess even our rookies treat Flash with the same disdain that other nhlers do.

Posted by: cstanton1 | September 19, 2010 10:20 PM | Report abuse

For those who say Caps can't win: If Carolina and Tampa could win; if Edmonton and Calgary could make to the 7th game; if the Ducks in 2001 or whatever made a Game 7; and if Flyers made Finals last year; then the odds say the Caps "can" win the Cup.
----------

before you go making comparisons, i suggest you put down that st emilion grand cru bottle and consider some details.

The Calgary team was all about defense first and were easily the most physical team that yr in the nhl. Every player hit everything on every shift. They overcame a lack of top end talent and rode their physicality, defensive game, and goaltending to the Finals. Carolina also had a great work ethic but they had to make some major midseason adjustments on defense including giving a bigger role to Mike Commodore and Aaron Ward. But that was a team that also thought D first, including their forwards. There weren't any Flash's or Semin's on their top lines. They had Justin Williams, Cole, Staal, Stillman and then brought up Andrew Ladd. Just a very sound well-coached "team" of players.

Tampa was an anomaly imo. They weren't a team who played the "right way" until they got into the playoffs and they still had to keep adjusting. Tampa to me was probably the best example of your comment "if this team can win, so can the Caps".

The Ducks who reached the Finals vs the Dvils were definitely overachievers. They were largely a one line team whose strength was their defensive centers (Rucchin, Niedermayer, Oates). Another example I can't argue with but that was a weaker western conference they had to go thru. Dallas wasn't as strong as they had been in past yrs because key members of their team esp on D were gone (manson, ludwig) and Detroit was in a transitionary year - their older players who'd carried them were passing the torch to the younger kids like Zetterberg and Datsyuk.

the Flyers? come on. The flyers are built very differently than are the Caps. that is recent enough that I shouldn't have to go thru the differences.

Show me a few successful playoff teams who have been built like the caps and play a high octane offensive style with not much attention to defense or grit. I can think of some reg season teams who resemble the caps, but no successful playoff teams. Like I said, maybe Tampa from that one year. But that's the exception not the rule. You play the odds and you'll find the Caps are trying to reinvent the wheel on how to win a Cup.

Posted by: cstanton1 | September 19, 2010 10:49 PM | Report abuse

-- In his media scrum, Boudreau seemed to hint strongly at the possibility of young defensmen Karl Alzner and John Carlson being paired together in the NHL like they were so much for Hershey

------

They'll force that chemistry at this level and find it to be a weak pairing and then have to reshuffle things. Boudreau doesn't have a clue on things like this. There is no way at all that Carlson-Alzner will stay together. If Bruce pairs em together, they'll get dismantled by the 10th or 15th game. That experiment won't last.

Posted by: cstanton1 | September 19, 2010 10:54 PM | Report abuse

So who has the opening night lines?

Posted by: Greg S. | September 19, 2010 10:59 PM | Report abuse

@cstanton01

no doubt, you are right that a physical team playing tough defense can win go far in the playoffs.

This presupposes that winning the Cup is all that matters. Edmonton, Pittsburgh, and Montreal won a bunch of cups with creative players ala Semin and Green, also. People remember those teams but not many remember New Jersey or Carolina - those teams were forgettable, and with good reason.

I root for this team - warts and all - precisely because it is populated with brilliant creative players capable of bring the game to life. They play, and hockey happens, the game becomes alive. It's why sport is worth watching. The Habs played a game designed to beat us in the 1st round, but it was a negative style - they didn't want "hockey to happen" they wanted to prevent anything like the game coming to life. They wanted it dead and barren. I'd rather root for a team that is creative, that takes risks and loses rather than root for a forgettable team like the Devils that wins a few cups because their goalie was good and throwing the puck around the boards.

This team is good enough to win a cup and I am sure the Caps will do it within the next three or four seasons. I'd love more than one Cup, but we'll take what we get...

Semin is "soft" he'll never be Konowalchuk. He's also one of the best hockey players I've seen in DC. We may not be able to afford him and all of these other great prospects down the road, but just as he is, he's worthy of appreciation. It also takes passion to learn the game as well as he has and to have the kind of touch and vision he has. Not everyone chooses to believe in cliches about how the game should be played and Semin is an outlier. But no one should underestimate how much the game means to him because he doesn't choose to play like Gordie Howe.

In the event, I don't mean to argue or belittle other's opinions. This is a great board and I learn a lot from your posts and the other posters here...

Posted by: RedLitYogi | September 19, 2010 11:03 PM | Report abuse

cstanton: If you read my posts from last night, criticizing McPhee, you'll see where I said that no Cup champion back into the 50's was constructed like the Caps.

That said, and you must give weight to this, but we've gone from 6 teams to 30. Since then, we've had (in your words) teams like '01 Ducks and '04 Tampa change the rules a little. Teams are watered down. The Caps are so head and shoulders above most teams offensively that they "could" win. The guys get hot on the PP; Varly gets zoned in; Poti has the month of his life...?

Will you stand firm that the Caps have zero chance, essentially the same as Oilers or Florida, or will you break down and say they have "some" chance?

To say no chance is not true. If Tampa could win in '04, the Caps can win now. That said, we are in 100% agreement that with about three tweaks the Caps could have a much better playoff-ready team.

I'm going to ask that all posters here watch and see if your prediction that Alzner and Carlson are broken up by game 15 comes true or not. You might turn out wrong on this one and maybe like Whitaker and Trammell they stay together.

Posted by: tominsocal1 | September 19, 2010 11:15 PM | Report abuse

Yogi: Montreal in the 70s won because of their blueline, the overall commitment to team D (Bob Gainey) and goaltending.

LaFleur was icing on the cake.

BTW, I remember all the Cup winners equally. Naturally you remember the Islanders a little more because they won four, Habs for winning five straight, etc, but individually you remember each yearly winner the same. I mean, who can forget Commodore's beard?

Now, cstanton will disagree with this, but Caps made Finals in 98 almost entirely due to Kolzig. The team grit was nice and all and Bondra and Oates were very good offensively, but Olie plain and simple beat Hasek.

What I'm saying, is despite Caps shortcomings, and along with the great offense, there's no saying Varly can't do that. Every year it seems a new goalie or two comes from nowhere and steals a few series. The goalie for Carolina in '04 is a great example. As was Ducks goalie in '01, name escapes me, Giguere?

OK, I still want a #1D and a vet center.

Posted by: tominsocal1 | September 19, 2010 11:31 PM | Report abuse

One more thing, cstanton, it wouldn't be me, your old pal, if I didn't have one more item to impart.

This, for you, is a warning.

I have it on good authority that you (and a few other posters here, see names below) will be receiving free tickets to the home opener. Great, huh? Well...plan is for opening night (besides unveiling that spittoon, the Prez Trophy) is all fans will be getting free Caps Kool-Aid when going through the gates! And, Kool-Aid will be administered by a robed McPhee from an altar and will be dispened to each fan with Caps pablum! Anyway, and this is where the warning comes from, but the Kool-Aid will be made with Caps Holy Water (made from Rod Langway's sweat, and we all know he sweated like a dog) and that any non-believers who drink the Kool-Aid will instantly smoke up like the Wicked Witch of the Western Conference! Now, I don't care much if joek gets smoked thusly, but I'd sure miss your posts if it happened to you! So do why don't you like Clint Eastwood in "Fistful of Dollars" and PRETEND to drink it! Then smile knowingly like the Stepford fan you are pretending to be and you will be fine! Meanwhile you will hear ghastly screams in the arena at another gate and the cry, "I'm melting! I'm melting!" and you will know that joek443 has bit the dust! So, I'm telling you, cstanton1, but no one else, so keep it a secret and don't tell anyone!

(OK, maybe tell underpants2, I'm not sure about him, but surely don't tell cheef, LarryDavid or SoaringCaps!)

You know, now that I've typed this, I realize maybe there's SOME hope for joek443. What do you think?

Posted by: tominsocal1 | September 19, 2010 11:57 PM | Report abuse


yeah that is true, major brands do give out free samples of their popular health products best place to get yours is http://bit.ly/9fz66r tell your friends and family too

Posted by: kevindeon20 | September 20, 2010 7:15 AM | Report abuse

The Caps have enough talent for 2nd and 3rd line centers to emerge, I think. If not, the trade deadline is an option. MJ, MP, Flash, and Gordon should be able to fill 2nd and 3rd line centers. Again, if not, trades can work.

As for a solid, mean, and consistent blueliner to be paired with Green -- go shopping, Caps. Maybe the Devils will unload a blueliner or one can be bought from Vancouver or Edmonton for Flash, picks, or prospects. No one on the Caps current roster fits the bill. Not Schultz, not Poti, not Carlson, not Alzner, not Erskine, not Sloan. Maybe one of these will look decent for the regular season, but not the playoffs.

And I still do not see the PK being good enough. Again, a consistent, mean, passing and skating blueliner is needed. The stars also need to spend time on the pk -- Semin and Backs made the pk a threat to score, not a laugher.

Posted by: JIMALLCAPS1 | September 20, 2010 7:19 AM | Report abuse

Lol, I love Tom's late night wine induced ramblings. They are creative, humorous, and if you can crack his code they are informative.

I still dont think Flush can handle 2C duty and this scrimmage helped show this. I would love for him to prove me wrong and have a break out season, just to shut me up...but I am not confident that he will be able to do this. Maybe one of the youngins will prove worthy and steal the spot and we can move Flush to shagging pucks at practice duty.

I am also VERY interested to see what happens in Jersey here in the next couple of weeks. They have what, 3 weeks left to get their cap down the $3-6 mil they need to cut. You would think that they would want to get all the deals/trades out of the way before the season starts so they can focus better at camp. It has to be a distraction to the players.

P.S. @cstanton1, I almost pi$$ed myself when I saw what Bruess did to Flush. Put him where he belonged, so to speak lol.

Posted by: SeminAllOverTheIce | September 20, 2010 9:08 AM | Report abuse

Yeah, let's just hope that Bruess doesn't pull a Yonkman and injure a player that is actually good enough to play in the NHL.

Posted by: fanohock1 | September 20, 2010 9:55 AM | Report abuse

Wow, the kool-aid drinkers really came out in force during that McPhee interview post! But the post that absolutely made me stare in open mouthed disbelief was that of hock1 saying the Stanley Cup is "just another tournament." That is absolutely the worst comment I have heard read while browsing through this blog over the years! And to say the "best team" doesn't always win is just loser talk, the Hawks won the Cup this past season and therefore they are the best team.....period!

And if Flash starts this season as 2nd C I may have to go jump off a bridge. And to think, we all thought he would be gone by now and they are actually talking about him being the 2C??!! Unbelievable! And if there is kool-aid being served at the Verizon Center this year I will be sure to refrain, Langway sweat??!! UGH!!!

Posted by: PhilR | September 20, 2010 9:59 AM | Report abuse

fanohock1,

You do not thnk Bruess will make it to the big club at some point as and energy 4th liner?

Posted by: PhilR | September 20, 2010 10:01 AM | Report abuse

@PhilR

Unless something drastic happens in the next couple weeks, you may want to go and stake claim on the Wilson bridge somewhere. Because I'd say he is more than penciled in at that spot as of now.

Just remember to not do this during rush hour or you may end up like the last guy who did that (eventually bean-bag gunned and ended up falling off into the water anyhow). Police had to prevent commuters from trying to kill/push him.

Also, can I convince you to do this while wearing a Flash jersey and holding a sign that says "Vancouver or bust". Maybe it will be the spark GMGM needs to pull the trigger next time.

Posted by: SeminAllOverTheIce | September 20, 2010 10:07 AM | Report abuse

PhilR: Maybe, but do you really want him running people during camp and doing something like break Backstrom's leg? That's what happened when Yonkman broke Nylander's leg (he was the top line center back then, first time around with Caps). Yonkman is getting another shot with the Coyotes right now but has only played 50 NHL games. I agree that good hard nosed 4th liners are needed to complete a team, but there are MANY of them around the league. Top flight 1st line centers, or 40 goals scorers are not in abundance and I'd rather not have a fringe player trying to make a statement against a proven NHLer.

Posted by: fanohock1 | September 20, 2010 10:11 AM | Report abuse

Flash is not the best player in the NHL; he has his faults as being inconsistent, poor in the face-off circle, and weak on the puck/along the boards. But he is not the worst, either. He has a good touch on passes, skates well, has good hands, can snipe the puck into the net well, and tries to improve. I do NOT see him as a long-term solution as 2nd line center (and God forbid 3rd line, just no), but a place-holder for MJ to grow into the role during the season, sure. He may be trade bait, for all we know. I doubt he is 2nd line center by the playoffs, but for now, he is available and not horrible. I pray that MJ or MP takes over as 2nd line center. The bigger question is who is 3rd line center if MJ moves up?

Posted by: JIMALLCAPS1 | September 20, 2010 10:15 AM | Report abuse

I would NEVER disgracde my body by putting any item with that individuals name on! He was worked over by MP and an AHLer and they are talking 2C!!??!!?? I think I may have a heart attack before I even make it to the Wilson Bridge! This is just craziness, he failed at the position last year, has not one once of defensive ability, and his play making skills are suspect when being forechecked/pressured......that should tell BB and GMGM right there that he is not the individual for the job!

Posted by: PhilR | September 20, 2010 10:17 AM | Report abuse

"Top flight 1st line centers, or 40 goals scorers are not in abundance " -fanohock1

Good thing Flash is NEITHER. And there is no way he does that against a Backstrom, Ovie, Semin, etc because of a thing called respect.

@JIMALLCAPS1
He skates well and shoots fairly accurate, he is weak pretty much everywhere else. Wing material at best, def not a 2C. I have "trade bait" on my vision board at home. A vision board is where you paste pictures of things you want and make them come true. For reference check out season 4 of It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia.

@PhilR
For the greater good bro, for the greater good. You would be taking one for the team and helping the rest of us witness a Cup chamionship team. Isnt that worth you tarnishing your image for just 1 jump? :P

Posted by: SeminAllOverTheIce | September 20, 2010 10:32 AM | Report abuse

Geez SAOTI, you got me so wound up I see that I made at least three typo's in that last post. I am just so annoyed right now, glad I did not check this board until today......would have ruined my weekend!

Posted by: PhilR | September 20, 2010 10:36 AM | Report abuse

SAOTI: We shall see, we shall see. If Bruess takes liberties on Backs or Semin we'll see what happens. If he goes after Ovi, He vill lose. Even a player like Flash could bring back a return via a trade so I'd still rather Bruess dial it back so he doesn't hurt an asset. In Chimera's interview in the newest thread he mentions that you don't want to hurt team mates in camp. THAT is respect.

Posted by: fanohock1 | September 20, 2010 10:45 AM | Report abuse

10-1 cstanton1 will use that quote as ammo to call him a coward/sissy and scared to hit, ergo not a gritty guy at all. Any takers?

As for Flash, his trade value is not as high as his salary unfortunatey, otherwise he would be gone already. I am still hoping for some summertime magic and we see him gone before opening day...only 2 days left for that though since summer ends on the 22nd. :(

Posted by: SeminAllOverTheIce | September 20, 2010 10:54 AM | Report abuse

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