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Kolzig Announces Retirement

(Toni L. Sandys -- The Washington Post)


Longtime Caps goaltender and often face of the team Olie Kolzig officially announced his retirement from the NHL today. You can read a full release here.

It seems like a long time since Kolzig and the Capitals parted ways following the 2008 season when Cristobal Huet was brought in at the trade deadline and helped fuel a playoff run, but it's unlikely anyone will forget his time in Washington.

"He'll go down as one of the best goaltenders and leaders ever in Washington and rightfully so," David Steckel said. "It was just a situation where the team felt like it could get somebody and it did. Unfortunately that's the business side of it. And it made our team better; it was just a hard thing to see....For the most part, the guys felt for Olie, but I dont think it showed in our play and we were very professional about it all."

Caps fans: What was your favorite Olie the Goalie moment?

By Katie Carrera  |  September 23, 2009; 1:17 PM ET
 
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Next: Poll: Should the Capitals Retire No. 37?

Comments

Probably not my favorite Kolzig moment, but one I'll always remember: Zilla waving his stick at the pigeon on the ice (Rally Pigeon!).

Too many great hockey moments to choose from. Olie was a great goalie and is an even greater man.

Congratulations and thank you Olie!!!

Posted by: CapsChick | September 23, 2009 1:22 PM | Report abuse

probably not the overall favorite Olie moment, but still good....When Olie fought Bryon Dafoe in a brawl since they were best men at each other's weddings

Posted by: _stevo | September 23, 2009 1:22 PM | Report abuse

I think a lot of people will say the 98 Cup run and the flying save against Pittsburgh (was it Jan Hrdina who shot it?), and those are two of mine.

But my personal favorite was a regular season game, circa 99 or 2000, when he stopped something like 45 shots in a 2-2 tie against Detroit. I've never seen him play better than that.

Godspeed Olie the Goalie.

Posted by: gocaps2 | September 23, 2009 1:23 PM | Report abuse

Dear Caps,

After the very public falling out, do the right thing, make-up with the guy and retire 37.

Thanks.

Posted by: jim74454 | September 23, 2009 1:23 PM | Report abuse

Kolzig's fight with Dafoe was definitely memorable, but the series with Buffalo that took us to the Cup was amazing. I definitely expect to see his number hanging up top within the next few years.

Posted by: gocaps99 | September 23, 2009 1:24 PM | Report abuse

Enjoy your retirement Sir. You were a professional and a gentleman and the best goalie we ever had.

As far as favorite moments, the pigeon thing was pretty funny.

Posted by: pkendrick | September 23, 2009 1:26 PM | Report abuse

There are too many Olie moments to label one as my favourite. though the time he smacked Slater (Atlanta) in the noggin with his left fist was awesome :)

To Washington Capitals Front Office:

RETIRE #37. He earned it and saved the teams collective rear ends many years. NO matter what happened at the end, do the right thing. Raise it to the rafters and bring him home!

Posted by: lloydrj727 | September 23, 2009 1:27 PM | Report abuse

Commercial from the mid-late 90's with him sitting down for a romantic dinner with his "wife" (not sure if it was his real wife or actress). Pours her a glass of red wine, then takes a swig from the bottle and pours the rest over his head.

I will absolutely remember his play on the ice, most memorably for myself was his battle vs. Jim Carey, but that commercial is absolutely my favorite Olie moment.

Posted by: FFSEnough | September 23, 2009 1:27 PM | Report abuse

Without a doubt my fav. Kolzig moment was the Dafoe fight.

Posted by: Dizzy1205 | September 23, 2009 1:27 PM | Report abuse

Agreed on putting his number in the rafters. He (and Bondra) deserves that honor.

Posted by: pkendrick | September 23, 2009 1:28 PM | Report abuse

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v1u7anayPQQ

Something about the best man fighting the groom that is just poetic (1:52 marker)...Zilla, you're the man, best of luck to you.

Posted by: SPKK | September 23, 2009 1:29 PM | Report abuse

The ultimate Kolzig moment for me was him pummelling Francios Lereaux of the Penguins.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L-GYuIenNt8

Posted by: wardk19 | September 23, 2009 1:30 PM | Report abuse

O-LIE O-LIE O-LIE!!!

some of my favorite Olie moments was his 300th win, his vezina win, his 1998 playoff run, but my favorite all time olie moments all came off the ice. After a Caps practice I gave him my olie with his name written in a hotdg card to sign and he looked at it and went "aw geeze, to be young, this brings back memories, are you sure you want me to sign this, you don't have a jersey or something else *chuckles*" he was such a nice guy and regardless of how anyone feels how he played towards the end, his service to the Caps for his life deserved a lot mroe respect then he got before he left.

Olie you are the Caps, and I can't wait until you and Bondra hang side by side in VC, then I'll feel better when I look up at games in my section at 411

Posted by: capsfan387 | September 23, 2009 1:31 PM | Report abuse

@ FFSEnough

One of the best- commercials and individuals.

Thanks Olie.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2OCnDrab3dk

Posted by: Fro_ | September 23, 2009 1:33 PM | Report abuse

Favorite moment: when he jumped into a scrum involving Dale Hunter and took on Penguins goon Francois Leroux.

Good luck in retirement, Olie!!

Posted by: Hatfield223 | September 23, 2009 1:35 PM | Report abuse

his off-ice community work and "Athletes Against Autism"

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | September 23, 2009 1:35 PM | Report abuse

Ooh, wardk beat me to it!

Posted by: Hatfield223 | September 23, 2009 1:35 PM | Report abuse

Olie Kolzig= The best goaltender to ever play for the Washington Capitals! Retire #37.

Posted by: rockinthered1 | September 23, 2009 1:39 PM | Report abuse

"Favorite moment: when he jumped into a scrum involving Dale Hunter and took on Penguins goon Francois Leroux."

I was going to use this one also. Great player and great CAP!

Posted by: scottysheldon | September 23, 2009 1:42 PM | Report abuse

Without a doubt my fav. Kolzig moment was the Dafoe fight.

Posted by: Dizzy1205 | September 23, 2009 1:27 PM |

Beat me to it! That and his glorious 98 playoff run, where he put a tired, offensive-deprived Caps team on his shoulders to get us into the Finals.

Posted by: richmondphil | September 23, 2009 1:44 PM | Report abuse

Olie wins his 300th Career win with the Caps, video from the game.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P2q-4Sqt2Fk&feature=channel_page

Posted by: capsfan387 | September 23, 2009 1:45 PM | Report abuse

Kolzig also, if only for a 7 game series, outplayed Hasek, the year's Hart, Vezina, and Pearson winner. Not many goalies can say even that much.

Posted by: richmondphil | September 23, 2009 1:48 PM | Report abuse

GMGM
please fix a wrong. Apologize to Olie and retire his jersey before the end of this season.

Posted by: capsgary | September 23, 2009 1:51 PM | Report abuse

98 Cup run, when 0lie dominated

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SN3USCF8GIM
1:46-6:24

Maybe he can sign a one day contract like stretch and retire as a Cap. Definitely need his number up in the rafters!

Thx for the memories Olie! We wish you well!

Posted by: malujoker | September 23, 2009 2:00 PM | Report abuse

From Puck Daddy , Good on Ted.
• Former Washington Capitals goalie Olaf Kolzig retires after 14 NHL seasons with 303 career wins and a 2.71 career GAA. His break with the Capitals was a bitter, rotten moment for both parties; one, we imagine, will only be mentioned in passing while fans celebrate one of the best goalies of the last 20 years. Said Ted Leonsis today: "Olie was the face of the Capitals franchise for years, on the ice, in the locker room and around Washington, D.C. He was a great Capital and the organization and our fans will always have fond memories of 'Olie the Goalie.' We wish him and his wonderful family all the best in his retirement." [NHL, and more from Japers later today]

Posted by: CapCenterholdover | September 23, 2009 2:04 PM | Report abuse

It also seems quite fitting. The retirement of our old franchise goalie comes the same year as the rise of (hopefully) our next franchise goalie.

Posted by: richmondphil | September 23, 2009 2:05 PM | Report abuse

'98. 'nuff said.

thank you Olie for all your years of service to the organization, and for being such a great sport and citizen through all the years. you'll always hold a place in this Caps fan's heart.

I hope to see 37 hanging from the rafters of Verizon Center in the near future (and in the HOF!).

Posted by: sargeantmofo | September 23, 2009 2:05 PM | Report abuse

I totally agree with all said about Ollie above. Please don't leave it here, innundate GMGM's email and Ted Corner with commens asking for Ollie to be reinstated to retire as a CAP and hang his jersey.

Posted by: CapCenterholdover | September 23, 2009 2:11 PM | Report abuse

still miss olie terribly in the net. i like theo a lot, and the new 'pups' will be okay after they get some more experience, but olie will always be my favorite caps goalie. and he deserves the respect of having his number retired! :)

Posted by: spinner-33 | September 23, 2009 2:14 PM | Report abuse

But my personal favorite was a regular season game, circa 99 or 2000, when he stopped something like 45 shots in a 2-2 tie against Detroit. I've never seen him play better than that.

Godspeed Olie the Goalie.

Posted by: gocaps2 | September 23, 2009 1:23 PM |

To pick a regular season game that stands out to me, I think it was also the same year you said, maybe 01. It was against the Senators. We were down by 3 with 5 minutes left in the third, rallied back, and won in regulation! Kolzig was bending all sorts of ways.

Posted by: richmondphil | September 23, 2009 2:16 PM | Report abuse

Definitely win #300. Got chills when he came out after the game to speak to the crowd. One of the classiest athletes ever to play in this town.

Posted by: jburksva | September 23, 2009 2:17 PM | Report abuse

no more retired numbers until we get a cup.

Posted by: jamebow | September 23, 2009 2:19 PM | Report abuse

no more retired numbers until we get a cup.

Posted by: jamebow | September 23, 2009 2:19 PM

I don't care if it takes us 100 years to get a Cup, #12 needs to be up there and fast.

Posted by: richmondphil | September 23, 2009 2:22 PM | Report abuse

What a class act Olie is! Thank you for all of the wonderful memories. Olie, best wishes to you and your family.

Posted by: eric22 | September 23, 2009 2:23 PM | Report abuse

that's thr stupidest thing I have ever heard, Bondra's # shoulda been retired already and Olie's # definately deserves it soon, so regardless of a Cup or not, these guys deserve the ultimate respect for all their years of service, any Caps fans know that.

Posted by: capsfan387 | September 23, 2009 2:24 PM | Report abuse

Game 6 against Buffalo. He comes out to challenge a shot that went wide, caromed around the cage to an unchecked player (I want to say Woolley) who had an open net. Olie scrambled back and got his skate blade on it at the post. A few minutes later we were in the Finals.

Posted by: cao091402 | September 23, 2009 2:26 PM | Report abuse

I posted as HolyOlie back when this blog started up. Loved the guy. For some reason I picked him out as my favorite player back in the Jim "Ace" Carrey days, probably because nobody gave him credit when he played well. Other kids would be lined up outside of Cap Centre waiting for Hunter, Pivonka, and Bondra autographs, but I'd be out there waiting for Olie. It felt like the end of an era when he left - the last remaining player from my preteen days when my family moved here from the west coast and I first fell in love with the Caps.

I'd love to see #37 go up to the rafters a few years from now.

Posted by: ModestProposal | September 23, 2009 2:30 PM | Report abuse

KOLZIG is the classiest man I have ever met. He would stand outside of KCI and sign autographs for kids, take pictures, and just talk to his fans. Really cared about the people who paid his salary.

As a season ticket holder............RETIRE NUMBER 37.......... PLEASE!!!!!!!

Posted by: whsqb10 | September 23, 2009 2:32 PM | Report abuse

I agree on the retired numbers.....first credential should be you have to be in the NHL Hall of Fame to qualify.

Posted by: Capsfannmiss | September 23, 2009 2:34 PM | Report abuse

All great moments, but I can't help but look at Olie as the guy who was willing to stay with a rebuilding franchise when they were truly terrible.

Without Olie, it could have been so much uglier.

Posted by: JohninMpls | September 23, 2009 2:41 PM | Report abuse

so let's see 14 years of loyal service, his 300 wins, his playoff run, his service to the community...those are credentials enough. teams don't retire #'s to pay respect because players made it to the HOF, they retire #'s to honor the player who represented their team.

Posted by: capsfan387 | September 23, 2009 2:43 PM | Report abuse

All great moments, but I can't help but look at Olie as the guy who was willing to stay with a rebuilding franchise when they were truly terrible.

Without Olie, it could have been so much uglier.

Posted by: JohninMpls | September 23, 2009 2:41 PM | Report abuse

so let's see 14 years of loyal service, his 300 wins, his playoff run, his service to the community...those are credentials enough. teams don't retire #'s to pay respect because players made it to the HOF, they retire #'s to honor the player who represented their team.

Posted by: capsfan387 | September 23, 2009 2:43 PM | Report abuse


^^I'm with these people. I could care less what the HoF thinks of him. The fact that he was the heart and soul of the Caps through thick and very, very thin is something that they're probably not going to look at, but it makes a world of difference here.

Posted by: ModestProposal | September 23, 2009 2:46 PM | Report abuse

My favorite with out a doubt was playing wing against him in deck hockey on the Caps cruise. Man he was good and put up with my crap! Also him showing me how to play Caribbean Poker...he was good I sucked!

Posted by: Iceman10 | September 23, 2009 2:53 PM | Report abuse

As you all probably already know via my name on here- I love olie and he remains on of my favorite players!! A real class act who wasn't above fighting to defend his team, let alone dealing with all the BS our organization went through over the years. I was very sad to see him go after all he did for us. Happy retirement olie!! Enjoy the time with your family, maybe we will even see you in the area!!

Fav moment: the first time I ever saw olie play as the backup for Carey at the caps center. It was in the height of the Carey craze but I decided he was better and that he would be our goalie. Even better is that I was just a little squirt at the time, barely even aware of all the rules yet but I knew talent when I saw it ;)

retire 37! And 12 for that matter!!

Posted by: mrszilla | September 23, 2009 3:01 PM | Report abuse

I think the season was 1994 or 1995, but eating a hotdog on the bench. That was surely a Classic.

Posted by: godpere | September 23, 2009 3:24 PM | Report abuse

Best moment? Him holding the hotdog with his name written in mustard on his rookie card

Posted by: MrDC3 | September 23, 2009 3:24 PM | Report abuse

He stuck with us when he could have easily gone on to better teams. Thank you Olie such a positive for our team. You will be so missed!

Retire 37! Kolzig will always be Washington's goalie.

Posted by: capscoach | September 23, 2009 3:44 PM | Report abuse

Favorite Olie moment...besides the '98 Cup run? AND every game I witnessed where we should've lost by a ton but his huge saves kept us close? Gotta be the time when he was mic'd for a nationally televised game. Don't know when...don't know who the opposing team was. But a puck gets sent in deep so the teams could change lines with Joe Reekie in pursuit of the lazy dump. As Reekie gets the puck and skates behind the cage, Zilla yells out to his blueliner, "it hurts my eyes watching you skate!" I don't know why that has stuck with me for so long...but it makes me laugh every time I think about it.

Posted by: tyoc | September 23, 2009 3:49 PM | Report abuse

Probably my most memorable. I watched a pratice when Bruce first started, and he used to end practices with shootout drills. If you scored, you were free to hit the showers. Suffice it to say Ollie was shutting em down that day. Semin was so frustrated that he smashed his stick in the glass behind the goal and ended up breaking the glass. I could see Ollie's smirk through his mask from across KCI.

Posted by: pch49 | September 23, 2009 3:50 PM | Report abuse

Ollie the Goalie. The Caps should honor him at a game this year with a bobble head doll and give him a car or something.

Class act.

Posted by: nativedc | September 23, 2009 3:54 PM | Report abuse

Does anyone have a recommendation for the best way to watch games over the Internet? I've tried hockeystreams.com before and it was ok. I found something today called watch-hockey-online.net. Any experience with that or any others?

Posted by: ccCapsfan | September 23, 2009 4:48 PM | Report abuse

Not only should his jersey be retired, but bring him back to put on the jersey for one game, and let him retire here. Very classy move (are you listening Ted?). Put the nonsense to bed and retire the past face of the franchise.

Posted by: bubblegirl1 | September 23, 2009 4:48 PM | Report abuse

there is ZERO question olies number needs to be retired. the only question is does number 12 go up first, to which i say no. olie was the greatest thing to happen to dc hockey in the pre-ovie era, and was as great a guy off the ice as he was off of it. its hard to believe that any one caps fan out there would be opposed to his number being retired to the rafters, as he is the definition of a class act, not to mention the undisputed greatest goalie caps history. thank you olie for the decade plus of great memories, and we all look forward to seeing your number up top in verizon where it belongs.

Posted by: mmitch34 | September 23, 2009 5:47 PM | Report abuse

I remember shooting the bull with Olie at Crofton car wash. Nicest dude you'd ever want to meet..

Posted by: SMWE357 | September 23, 2009 7:20 PM | Report abuse

#37 should be retired but first BONDRA should be retired...my brothers generation had Gardner (retired) mine had Bondra (should be retired) and the next generation has Ovi...so 1st should be BONDRA, then the best goalie, Olie

P.S. Wish #12 played his last game as a Cap...he deserved it...

Posted by: Wagnerchristopher | September 23, 2009 9:19 PM | Report abuse

Didn't Kolzig come out of net and slug someone (Darcy Tucker?) who had cross-checked a Capital?

Posted by: Cerealman | September 23, 2009 10:20 PM | Report abuse

I stopped paying attention to hockey for a long stretch of my childhood/adolescence, and only recently got back, but "Olie the Goalie" was my favorite player when I was a kid. I always watched him, and his is the only name I remembered during the nearly 10 years when I didn't watch Caps hockey. I don't have a specific memory - I only know that Olie rocked my 7-year-old world, and I will miss him immensely.

Posted by: Stephi77 | September 24, 2009 12:25 AM | Report abuse

On the ice- without question the Stanley Cup playoff run. In perticular, the playoff series vs Buffalo and Dominik Hasek.

Off the ice-two moments. The TV commercial in the restaurant which was simply a great commercial and IMO one of the greatest ever to star an athlete.
Secondly, one day I was standing in line at a local MD beverage store when I dropped something and the gentleman behind me reached down, picked it up, and handed it to me. When I looked at his face to thank him, I discovered the gentleman was Olie.

Posted by: croftonpost | September 24, 2009 4:16 AM | Report abuse

I don't remember the exact game, but I remember him driving me nuts when he was in net early in his career. Undisciplined, erratic, inconsistent. Then in one game he was put in after Jim Carrey was yanked in first period. He played like a beast to finish the game. It was a defining moment in his career. After that it was like he was a different goalie. Solid, relaxed, confident. Later that season Carrey was traded to Boston for Joe "all I want to do is pass" Junueau. It was the all zilla show from that point on.

Posted by: akmzrazor | September 24, 2009 8:11 AM | Report abuse

Favorite moment:

October 1997, road game @ St. Louis. I was hanging out at the team hotel at Union Station (St. Louis one) 2 blocks from Kiel Center.

Joe Reekie and Olaf the Goalaf walked out of the hotel, opting to walk to Kiel Center instead of taking team bus.

Some local kid runs up to Reekie and says, "Mr. Kolzig, can I have your autograph?"

Reekie, surprised and amused, responds, "You think I'M Olie Kolzig?? You think I'M Olie the Goalie???" and chuckles.

Classy Olie took the encounter in stride and signed the kid's card. No doubt other diva pro athletes (non-hockey of course) would have berated the kid with the "How dare he not know how I am!" attitude.

Reminds me of a similar incident at the old Piney Orchard rink. One day after practice, I was having a conversation with Steve Konowalchuk in the parking lot (he had a busted wrist at the time). A kid interrupted and asked Kono, "Are you Gonchar?" He said no and the kid abruptly left. The look on Kono's face was priceless! Guess you had to be there...

Posted by: paperboy76 | September 24, 2009 9:40 AM | Report abuse

Olie's one of the all-time great Caps. He carried an old and slow team on his shoulders to the Stanley Cup Finals in '98. He was the core of the team for so many years. Retire his jersey and offer him a cool job in the organization so he can stay connected to the area.

Posted by: erniefive | September 24, 2009 10:02 AM | Report abuse

Olie is one of the all time great Caps. Can't wait for 37 in the rafters at the phone booth.
Cheers
Good luck and Godspeed in his retirement.

Posted by: CapsPop | September 24, 2009 11:39 AM | Report abuse

Please hang # 37 from the rafters... As a big Olie fan, what more can we say after so many years of professional service and conduct both on and off the ice, to say nothing of 300 wins... Thank you Olie! God speed and good luck.

Bob Schnebly

Posted by: StarLyrara | September 24, 2009 1:35 PM | Report abuse

Two years too late. Sometimes you gotta know when to hang 'em up rather than keep hanging on. Thanks for all the great years, Olie!

Posted by: ranndino | September 24, 2009 1:44 PM | Report abuse

Too many Olie moments to mention... Just don't wait too long to send #37 to the rafters.. Look how long the Caps waited for Gartner...

Posted by: frostanna | September 24, 2009 2:12 PM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

 
 
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