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Posted at 6:56 PM ET, 12/ 6/2010

Tonight's lineup: Leafs at Caps

By Katie Carrera

Eric Fehr, David Steckel, John Erskine and Tyler Sloan did not take part in warm ups for the Capitals prior to tonight's tilt against the Toronto Maple Leafs. Based on the official active roster for the game it appears that Sloan has been placed on injured reserve.

Sloan, who has been bothered by a hip-flexor and groin strain at various times this season, played on Saturday against Atlanta and would be eligible to return to the lineup beginning on Dec. 12 against New York.

The Capitals will take their first look at the defensive pairing of newcomer Scott Hannan and Tom Poti, back after missing the past two contests with a groin strain, as a potential shut-down combination.

Forwards
Ovechkin-Backstrom-Knuble
Laich-Perreault-Semin
Chimera-Johansson-Bradley
King-Gordon-Hendricks

Defensemen
Schultz-Green
Alzner-Carlson
Poti-Hannan

Goal
Neuvirth
Varlamov

Scratches: Eric Fehr, David Steckel and John Erskine.

By Katie Carrera  | December 6, 2010; 6:56 PM ET
Categories:  Lineups, Toronto Maple Leafs, Tyler Sloan  
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Next: Capitals fall 5-4 in shootout to Toronto, lose Jeff Schultz for 4-6 weeks

Comments

WTF deserves the scratch, he needs to produce in a big way.

GO 8.5!
GO CAPS!!!

Posted by: wtf_e_fehr | December 6, 2010 6:59 PM | Report abuse

C-A-P-S CAPS CAPS CAPS!!!

Posted by: wocoliz | December 6, 2010 7:02 PM | Report abuse

Glad to see Matty P back. Go CAPS!!!

Posted by: wocoliz | December 6, 2010 7:04 PM | Report abuse

The ole switcheroo with the threads huh?

WaPo always keeps ya guessin'!

...and I'd like Hendricks on that 3rd line better.

Posted by: wtf_e_fehr | December 6, 2010 7:04 PM | Report abuse

I miss the old chat format.

Posted by: wocoliz | December 6, 2010 7:07 PM | Report abuse

WaPo - please drop twitter and get the 'live chat' back
the twitter threads are impossible to follow because of all the 're-tweets'

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | December 6, 2010 7:09 PM | Report abuse

Couldn't agree more, Capt Kirk.

Let's go, CAPS!!!

Posted by: wocoliz | December 6, 2010 7:12 PM | Report abuse

i'd say they got some traffic in front on that one!!

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | December 6, 2010 7:12 PM | Report abuse

8.5 = instant offense

Posted by: wtf_e_fehr | December 6, 2010 7:13 PM | Report abuse

WELCOME BACK MATTY P!!!!!!

Posted by: wocoliz | December 6, 2010 7:13 PM | Report abuse

Somebody draw up an electronic petition to get the old chat back, THEN MAYBE WE CAN GET SOMEWHERE!

Posted by: wtf_e_fehr | December 6, 2010 7:15 PM | Report abuse

Looks like it's you and me tonight, WTF. WTF????!!

Posted by: wocoliz | December 6, 2010 7:17 PM | Report abuse

wtf:
maybe we can all complain to:
"Washington Post Ombudsman Andrew Alexander"
i hear he gets e-mails from CI posters

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | December 6, 2010 7:18 PM | Report abuse

Oops! (Sorry, didn't mean to ignore you, Capt Kirk.)

LET'S GO, CAPS!!!

Posted by: wocoliz | December 6, 2010 7:20 PM | Report abuse

@Capt

oh yeah, i read dat

@woco

dont forget about da cap-e-tan...

THAT MAKES 3!

Posted by: wtf_e_fehr | December 6, 2010 7:21 PM | Report abuse

I'm with you guys. Twitter is ok for some things, but it's a terrible format for a live chat.

Posted by: tess2201 | December 6, 2010 7:21 PM | Report abuse

wocoliz:
i was about to go with:
"what am i, chopped liver"

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | December 6, 2010 7:21 PM | Report abuse

tess2201:
you're in tune with hershey - in CSN's pregame - it was stated that MP has been playing the best this past month - does that sound right or are there others that should be getting a look on the 'big' club?

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | December 6, 2010 7:24 PM | Report abuse

"...overplayed that move like he knew it was comin'"

CHANGE YOUR GAME A LIL OVIE!

Posted by: wtf_e_fehr | December 6, 2010 7:25 PM | Report abuse

nice play by alzner there

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | December 6, 2010 7:27 PM | Report abuse

Hey, Tess. Glad you're here!

Posted by: wocoliz | December 6, 2010 7:27 PM | Report abuse

Who was the BONEHEAD who failed to clear the zone?

Posted by: wtf_e_fehr | December 6, 2010 7:29 PM | Report abuse

looks like alzner was the one that had control of the puck and failed an easy clear

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | December 6, 2010 7:30 PM | Report abuse

Well, the lines got shuffled up a bit when Keith Aucoin went down with a freak knee injury (no timetable on his return) but lately Matty has been centering the top line with Andrew Gordon and Brian Willsie. Gordon has been on fire; near the top in almost all offensive categories. Jay Beagle is looking good in more of a grinder type role. Same with Pinozzotto. Kugryshev is finally starting to look comfortable with the AHL speed and style, but he's still a year or maybe two away from making the big club. But he's a smooth skater and stick-handler.

Posted by: tess2201 | December 6, 2010 7:32 PM | Report abuse

wtf_e_fehr:
i looked at it again during the commercial - and alzner was the last one with the puck when they 'cut' back to macarthur on the ice

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | December 6, 2010 7:32 PM | Report abuse

It's getting to the point that you need to start thinking about taking Ovechkin off the point on the PP.

His mistakes have led to about 4 or 5 2-on-1s over just the last couple of weeks.

Posted by: tmac2yao | December 6, 2010 7:33 PM | Report abuse

SLOPPY so far... Alzner was the guilty party. It happens... They seem to be hearing BB loud and clear about going to the net. Now they need to play some defense. I think this will be a high scoring game if OV can actually hit the net with some of his shots...

Posted by: sca187 | December 6, 2010 7:34 PM | Report abuse

nobody in front of the net on this PP - wtf??

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | December 6, 2010 7:34 PM | Report abuse

His moves/fakes are just too predictable.

Posted by: tmac2yao | December 6, 2010 7:34 PM | Report abuse

YEAH!!!!!!!!

Posted by: wocoliz | December 6, 2010 7:35 PM | Report abuse

guess somebody heard me

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | December 6, 2010 7:36 PM | Report abuse

Nice simple work by the 2nd unit.

Maybe not permanently take 8 off the point but temporarily.

Posted by: tmac2yao | December 6, 2010 7:36 PM | Report abuse

knuble's first shot was blocked and as the rebound came out laich slid over in front of the goalie - knubs second shots was screened.

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | December 6, 2010 7:37 PM | Report abuse

TMAC, you are correct. His move to the middle on the off-wing is SO predictable. He needs to learn how to go wide and create something that way - unless the GIVE him the middle...

Posted by: sca187 | December 6, 2010 7:38 PM | Report abuse

tess:
thanks for the update!!

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | December 6, 2010 7:41 PM | Report abuse

I'm glad the "go to the net" philosophy paid off early. Boudreau can now say "told ya so" to the boys during the intermission

Posted by: Dizruption | December 6, 2010 7:48 PM | Report abuse

Capt: No problem. Glad you didn't ask about our defense, cause that's been a little weak since Karl and Carly moved up to DC. Glad the Caps signed Hannan, cause if that means Sloan will eventually be in Hershey, he'll be a welcome addition. Fahey and Souray have been our best D tandem, and who knows how long Souray will be around? After those two, it gets pretty dicey on defense some nights. I guess we're lucky Holtby is able to cover for some of the D mistakes.

Posted by: tess2201 | December 6, 2010 7:49 PM | Report abuse

They need to clean up the defensive side of this game. Otherwise, I'm pretty content.

Posted by: sca187 | December 6, 2010 7:50 PM | Report abuse

And if ovechkin loses another puck I'm gonna puke.

Posted by: Dizruption | December 6, 2010 7:54 PM | Report abuse

And ok, so nobody said that Matty P. is the most articulate individual (based on his "interview" with Smokin' Al) but he did go to the net and the team was rewarded.

I see that DJK got a minute or so of ice that period. So we're on pace...

Posted by: sca187 | December 6, 2010 7:54 PM | Report abuse

Failed zone clearing pisses me off because it almost always leads to a scoring chance!

Posted by: wtf_e_fehr | December 6, 2010 7:56 PM | Report abuse

I always wondered if there was hidden meaning in Al Koken's nickname. Hmmm...

Posted by: sca187 | December 6, 2010 7:59 PM | Report abuse

OVI's shot this year is just awful. He looks like Eric Fehr. He has to be hurt or maybe thinking too much.

Posted by: pkme | December 6, 2010 8:00 PM | Report abuse

OVi also is fumbling the puck. We have never seen him play like this. After the Olympics last year his play has gone downhill. Still good but not dominating. Expectations are higher for him than most.

Posted by: pkme | December 6, 2010 8:02 PM | Report abuse

Excellent patience by 8.5

Posted by: wtf_e_fehr | December 6, 2010 8:11 PM | Report abuse

Been waiting for an excuse to order that #85 sweater. Come on, Matty P!

Posted by: wocoliz | December 6, 2010 8:11 PM | Report abuse

Way to pay the price semin.

Posted by: Dizruption | December 6, 2010 8:11 PM | Report abuse

guess he wants to stay with the caps - nice poise - semin "in front of the net"

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | December 6, 2010 8:11 PM | Report abuse

#28 has been amazing so far this season. Maybe he's finally ready to make a long-term commitment to the Caps. (Knock LOUDLY on wood)

Posted by: wocoliz | December 6, 2010 8:14 PM | Report abuse

When Perreault is on, he looks like he more than belongs.

I think the team could use his speed and creativity. Hopefully he can be consistent and handle the defensive side of things.

Posted by: tmac2yao | December 6, 2010 8:15 PM | Report abuse

I like it when I talk smack about a player and the they actually do something good. I like to be wrong.

Posted by: pkme | December 6, 2010 8:15 PM | Report abuse

the kid looks like Briere tonight. It is hard watching Ovechkin play like this.

Posted by: underpants2 | December 6, 2010 8:15 PM | Report abuse

MP85 is playing like he wants that 2C job!

Posted by: sca187 | December 6, 2010 8:18 PM | Report abuse

MP85 is playing like he wants that 2C job!

Posted by: sca187 | December 6, 2010 8:18 PM | Report abuse

carlsons needs to get that puck up around the crossbar - he had an open net up there

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | December 6, 2010 8:18 PM | Report abuse

Bozak just walked around Poti a bit to easy...

Posted by: wtf_e_fehr | December 6, 2010 8:18 PM | Report abuse

Poti looks like a liability out there

Posted by: Dizruption | December 6, 2010 8:19 PM | Report abuse

Let's see if we can tighten things up in the neutral and def zones. We've gotten away with some loose play and getting outworked, esp. in the d-zone.

Posted by: tmac2yao | December 6, 2010 8:20 PM | Report abuse

LET THEM GO KING
DO YOUR JOB!

Posted by: wtf_e_fehr | December 6, 2010 8:22 PM | Report abuse

another wrestling match

take a cue from erskine

LET THEM GO!

Posted by: wtf_e_fehr | December 6, 2010 8:23 PM | Report abuse

they need to play some d and look for the odd man rushes to pad the lead

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | December 6, 2010 8:23 PM | Report abuse

VINTAGE OVIE THERE!

Posted by: wtf_e_fehr | December 6, 2010 8:24 PM | Report abuse

Nice shot

Posted by: Dizruption | December 6, 2010 8:24 PM | Report abuse

OVI!!!! heeeessss baaaaack!!

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | December 6, 2010 8:25 PM | Report abuse

Fantastic shot from OV!

Posted by: wocoliz | December 6, 2010 8:25 PM | Report abuse

did anyone else notice poti 'hunching' up his shoulders - as he skated through - like he's thinking 'i hope this puck doesn't hit me'

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | December 6, 2010 8:27 PM | Report abuse

Nice to see that. He seemed to be coming out of the slump last game but looked a little shaky early in this one.

Posted by: tmac2yao | December 6, 2010 8:27 PM | Report abuse

again I talk smack and OVi scores. I need to keep this up. every person i say something bad about today and tonight they score. Semin you suck.

Posted by: pkme | December 6, 2010 8:28 PM | Report abuse

Why Semin?

Posted by: wtf_e_fehr | December 6, 2010 8:28 PM | Report abuse

DJK doing his job, And like I said, high-scoring game... OV is going to catch FIRE! Let's keep playing D and out-skating these guys. We SHOULD kill them! This is the way it's supposed to be. LET'S GO CAPS! LET'S GO CAPS!!! LET'S GO CAPS!!!!!

Posted by: sca187 | December 6, 2010 8:28 PM | Report abuse

Semin. Not a penalty. A goal is what I had in mind for semin

Posted by: pkme | December 6, 2010 8:30 PM | Report abuse

again I talk smack and OVi scores. I need to keep this up. every person i say something bad about today and tonight they score. Semin you suck.
@pkme- say the Caps can't score 10 goals tonight, please. lol

Posted by: FunkyGloveFacewash | December 6, 2010 8:34 PM | Report abuse

i thought that was another good '20'

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | December 6, 2010 8:36 PM | Report abuse

I want Semin to keep pace with Crosby. Poti has three assists tonight.

Posted by: pkme | December 6, 2010 8:36 PM | Report abuse

It seems like Chimera's been on his game recently.

Posted by: tmac2yao | December 6, 2010 8:37 PM | Report abuse

WTF, read the post man! pkme, keep talking sh*t about Semin!

Posted by: sca187 | December 6, 2010 8:40 PM | Report abuse

Why Semin?

Posted by: wtf_e_fehr | December 6, 2010 8:28 PM

Let me clarify...

Why? Semin.

(As in, why did you take that dumb penalty?)

...carry on

Posted by: wtf_e_fehr | December 6, 2010 8:44 PM | Report abuse

WTF, I'm with you now my brother. Thanks for the clarification...

Posted by: sca187 | December 6, 2010 8:45 PM | Report abuse

why not? or
why? not

Posted by: ebolean1 | December 6, 2010 8:47 PM | Report abuse

Anyone willing to fill in a late-comer on how we got here? Thanks kindly!

Posted by: stevie_in_gp | December 6, 2010 8:48 PM | Report abuse

I don't think DJK has won a single fight while with the Caps, maybe a couple of draws. In his defense, his sparse playing time probably doesn't help but in BB's defense, aside from fighting,DJK doesn't do enough other things well enough to justify playing him on a regular basis. That's what was so nice about Brash, not only was he a top fighter in the league, he could also play a solid gm when not dropping the mitts.

Posted by: FunkyGloveFacewash | December 6, 2010 8:52 PM | Report abuse

TOR should come out strong early in the 3rd. Let's see if we can resist that push. We got away with some loose play in our own for a few stretches so far in this game.

Posted by: tmac2yao | December 6, 2010 8:52 PM | Report abuse

alright caps. lets get 20 minutes of solid hockey.

Posted by: vm114 | December 6, 2010 8:54 PM | Report abuse

Poti may have 3 assists, but his Defense has been suspect.

Posted by: wtf_e_fehr | December 6, 2010 8:54 PM | Report abuse

Thanks for the good game Matty, but it's time for David to return, enjoy Hershey.
With love,
BB

Posted by: LloydChristmas | December 6, 2010 8:55 PM | Report abuse

(And sorry, to clarify: not a recap, but did we get here "the right way?")

Posted by: stevie_in_gp | December 6, 2010 8:56 PM | Report abuse

Thanks for the good game Matty, but it's time for David to return, enjoy Hershey.
With love,
BB

Posted by: LloydChristmas | December 6, 2010 8:55 PM

if BB could only get flash back .....

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | December 6, 2010 8:56 PM | Report abuse

stevie_in_gp
if by "the right way" - you mean getting bodies in front of the net - then yes - the right way

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | December 6, 2010 8:58 PM | Report abuse

alright caps. lets get 20 minutes of solid hockey.

Posted by: vm114 | December 6, 2010 8:59 PM | Report abuse

BB IS LIVID!

Posted by: wtf_e_fehr | December 6, 2010 9:00 PM | Report abuse

That's it, Capt. (And grit in some other ways as well, I hope, but that's the gist.)

Thank you, Sir.

Posted by: stevie_in_gp | December 6, 2010 9:00 PM | Report abuse

they're only missing the mark by inches

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | December 6, 2010 9:08 PM | Report abuse

@stevie_in_gp- I'd say we've played a good game so far tonight and the 4-1, err 4-2 score is deserved.

Posted by: FunkyGloveFacewash | December 6, 2010 9:08 PM | Report abuse

8.5 can't make his mind up so early to pass.

Posted by: stevie_in_gp | December 6, 2010 9:09 PM | Report abuse

vermontcaps - please don't say your happy that schultz hasn't played in the third

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | December 6, 2010 9:10 PM | Report abuse

Ouch, just when we were getting momentum back.

That was pretty unforced as well.

Big PK coming up.

Posted by: tmac2yao | December 6, 2010 9:11 PM | Report abuse

(and thank you, Funk)

Posted by: stevie_in_gp | December 6, 2010 9:13 PM | Report abuse

The "Hockey Gods" want Sloan to stay in the NHL.

the D just wont stay healthy

Posted by: wtf_e_fehr | December 6, 2010 9:17 PM | Report abuse

I don't think the Caps played all that well in their own end tonight. They've been worse but they can be much better.

Posted by: tmac2yao | December 6, 2010 9:18 PM | Report abuse

can't win a fight when you don't throw punches. King looks awkward. His balance is suspect and he's deathly afraid of Orr's bombs. He locked him out and he was happy to do that.

and i don't see Poti getting any type of flak from his coach as long as he keeps getting assists. Just an friendly neighborly observation.

Posted by: cstanton1 | December 6, 2010 9:20 PM | Report abuse

CLEAR THE FREAKIN PUCK!!!

Posted by: wtf_e_fehr | December 6, 2010 9:22 PM | Report abuse

There you go. Trouble getting the puck out of our end a lot tonight.

Bad pass/turnover by Laich in the o-zone earlier in that sequence.

Posted by: tmac2yao | December 6, 2010 9:22 PM | Report abuse

re: Poti

Probably true, cstant.

King's punching hand/wrist just looked . . . useless? Hurt? But perhaps he served his purpose nonetheless.

Posted by: stevie_in_gp | December 6, 2010 9:23 PM | Report abuse

Meltdown complete.

Posted by: tmac2yao | December 6, 2010 9:24 PM | Report abuse

i feel sick

g'night all

Posted by: wtf_e_fehr | December 6, 2010 9:24 PM | Report abuse

it'd be nice if this team had some killer instinct... you know, just a little...

Posted by: rachel216 | December 6, 2010 9:25 PM | Report abuse

This team has learned nothing from last year. I'm not drinking to cool-aid anymore.

Posted by: brihobbs | December 6, 2010 9:26 PM | Report abuse

that was an ugly 20

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | December 6, 2010 9:26 PM | Report abuse

that must have been one of those ZONE defense situations... you know, you just cover your ZONE and leave a guy WIDE open in front of your net like Poti just did.

Posted by: joek443 | December 6, 2010 9:27 PM | Report abuse

There was a noticeable lack of a sense of urgency in our own end earlier in the game and we were getting away with it so not much changed.

Posted by: tmac2yao | December 6, 2010 9:27 PM | Report abuse

Time for a shake, shake, shake up....

Posted by: festus75 | December 6, 2010 9:28 PM | Report abuse

How many leads blown in this season so far? And not just 1 goal leads, multi goal leads?

What a bunch of losers.

Posted by: BigGameSid | December 6, 2010 9:28 PM | Report abuse

see what happens when schultz isn't around to save their *sses :D

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | December 6, 2010 9:29 PM | Report abuse

@stevie_in_gp- Let me amend my earlier statement, the 4-4 score is deserved.

Posted by: FunkyGloveFacewash | December 6, 2010 9:32 PM | Report abuse

it'd be nice if this team had some killer instinct... you know, just a little...

Posted by: rachel216 | December 6, 2010 9:32 PM | Report abuse

BigGameSid - lurking, lurking, just waiting for a chance to strike. i admire your patience.

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | December 6, 2010 9:32 PM | Report abuse

lol capt

Posted by: ebolean1 | December 6, 2010 9:32 PM | Report abuse

BigGameSid - lurking, lurking, just waiting for a chance to strike. i admire your patience.

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ

LMFAO!

Posted by: LloydChristmas | December 6, 2010 9:33 PM | Report abuse

ebolean1:
if only vermontcaps were around to read it

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | December 6, 2010 9:34 PM | Report abuse

Yeah, I apologize for showing up at the wrong time and bringing the suck.

Posted by: stevie_in_gp | December 6, 2010 9:35 PM | Report abuse

biggamesid: i want you to know i really feel sorry for you. what a pathetic life you have. i do not have the pens blog open on my computer and comment on it whenever something bad happens to the pens. wow you are a big loser. hahahaha..

Posted by: rachel216 | December 6, 2010 9:35 PM | Report abuse

sid: why the hell do you even CARE so much about the caps? you're obsessed. LAME.

Posted by: rachel216 | December 6, 2010 9:37 PM | Report abuse

the problem is 9 outta 10 times during the season, they win these types of games... then most "fans" will say, well they still won so what's the problem??

Posted by: joek443 | December 6, 2010 9:37 PM | Report abuse

BGS:
your boy cros has a paw in both the pens scores tonight - congrats

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | December 6, 2010 9:37 PM | Report abuse

I hate shootouts.

Posted by: wocoliz | December 6, 2010 9:38 PM | Report abuse

No way the Leafs should have tied up this game. Two times in the last three games, the Caps let a team in their house tie up late. I just don't see how BB can let this happen.

Posted by: JIMALLCAPS2 | December 6, 2010 9:38 PM | Report abuse

@capt- BigLameSid was interrupted from stroking it to his Crosby pics when he heard the announcers say Tor had tied it.

Posted by: FunkyGloveFacewash | December 6, 2010 9:39 PM | Report abuse

Nahhh, like, 1 out of 10 fans will say that, joek.

But agreed: losses are better teaching tools at this point, assuming anyone is teaching.

Posted by: stevie_in_gp | December 6, 2010 9:40 PM | Report abuse

4-1 to 5-4, chumps, embarrassing. Really a time for a shake up.

Posted by: JIMALLCAPS2 | December 6, 2010 9:42 PM | Report abuse

But agreed: losses are better teaching tools at this point, assuming anyone is teaching.

Posted by: stevie_in_gp | December 6, 2010 9:40 PM

and anyone is learning :(

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | December 6, 2010 9:42 PM | Report abuse

@capt- BigLameSid was interrupted from stroking it to his Crosby pics when he heard the announcers say Tor had tied it.

Posted by: FunkyGloveFacewash

and got all excited like a little girl... biggamesid: "ooh let me go to caps insider and post sh**.....!!!!!"

DBAG.

Posted by: rachel216 | December 6, 2010 9:43 PM | Report abuse

Touche/.

Posted by: stevie_in_gp | December 6, 2010 9:44 PM | Report abuse

well at least they didn't lose to a HOT goalie again so wonder what excuse they will use this time...

Posted by: joek443 | December 6, 2010 9:44 PM | Report abuse

the goats blood will be flowing freely at least through thursday.
i just say it now: the sky is falling, the sky is falling :D

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | December 6, 2010 9:45 PM | Report abuse

@JIMALLCAPS
this loss is on the players...shame on them! BB held the extra practice, told them what to do, and when they did it they were in great shape...then they got lazy. Shame on them!

Posted by: capscoach | December 6, 2010 9:45 PM | Report abuse

Na Na NA na NA na Na Na HEY HEY HEY GOODBYE!!!!!!!!!! LOL

Posted by: StanleyCup1907 | December 6, 2010 9:45 PM | Report abuse

Caps are a mess right now. Offensive and defensive systems are out of whack. They have to get this cleaned up quickly because they are staring down some serious problems on both ends.

Posted by: CDon | December 6, 2010 9:46 PM | Report abuse

Pitt may only score two goals, but at least they hold onto a lead.

Posted by: capscoach | December 6, 2010 9:47 PM | Report abuse

Cant wait to hear OV and Semin laughing it up in the post game interview

Posted by: StanleyCup1907 | December 6, 2010 9:47 PM | Report abuse

Pitt and the Caps play the two WORST teams in the conference on the same night and the results speak for themselves...

Posted by: joek443 | December 6, 2010 9:50 PM | Report abuse

Hey, I've been posting to myself all game on the other thread. I came over here once to check and this one didn't look active either so I went back.

They blew that one. BB didn't look too red in the face though. Maybe it was because Sarge didn't play in the 3rd that they were able to come back, thoughts anyone?

I think it was arrogance myself.

Posted by: FloridaCapsFan | December 6, 2010 9:51 PM | Report abuse

Semin..."LOL LOL LOL LOL"
OV.....LOL ya my country men we sure blew that one " wink wink

BB " Hey you guys get a hotel room I am holding a press confer here... "

Posted by: StanleyCup1907 | December 6, 2010 9:52 PM | Report abuse

I have to accept the responsibility for this appalling loss. During the game I had beans on toast with a couple of nice glasses of pinot grigio. Sorry everyone (players - your off the hook).

Posted by: FloridaCapsFan | December 6, 2010 9:56 PM | Report abuse

The end of the game was bad. The Caps missed a few glorious chances in the 3rd to bury the Maple Leafs(MJ's close shot and Semin's post), but the D in the last 5 minutes was horrible.

Also, people blaming Alzner for the first goal need to get a grip. The puck hit a stansion on the clear and bounced back. It was an unlucky bounce.

Carlson was at fault for the 3rd goal. He failed to clear(not by an unlucky bounce) and then did a very poor job of covering his guy in front of the net. He should have bodied him.

@joek443

I am convinced that you are an idiot. The fact that you compared coverage on a 5 on 5 goal to coverage of a 5 on 4 goal in the last game shows how stupid and worthless all of your obversations are. The coverage tactics in those instances are different due to the amount of guys on the ice. You are a moron.

Also, maybe it was coincidence that the D just went into shambles once the calming presence of Schulz left the ice, but that is a pretty big coincidence.

Poti looked rusty. He has been out for so long you could tell he was rusty. Then add in the fact that he had a new D partner(Hannan), a few mistakes were going to happen.

@JIMALLCAPS2

It isn't BB who let it happen. He had the Caps sitting back in a trap like D the last 7 minutes. They were not pushing forward at all(maybe that cost them some). The PLAYERS just failed to execute the plays. That wasn't coaching, that falls on the players.

Posted by: sgm3 | December 6, 2010 9:56 PM | Report abuse

I think it was arrogance myself.
-------------------------------

watching the MNF and the Jets, I see some similarities between them and the Caps... neither has won anything but seem to make a lot of noise and somewhat arrogant.

Posted by: joek443 | December 6, 2010 9:58 PM | Report abuse

@StanleyCup1907

that is a really dumb comment...yup. hockey players are not allowed to be human and have sit in shame until they finally win another game...they are allowed to have a life.

Caps have GOT to learn to sustain positional D and clear the puck! They have all the skills, but they inevitably make some stupid mistakes which costs them the game.

Consistency is the real issue here...when they are on their game they look great...BB has given them a system that works, but it is almost like they just don't think! They have hockey skills, but they are constantly having brain farts.

At least they had net presence for two periods...BB is gonna give them one heck of a practice this week!

Posted by: capscoach | December 6, 2010 10:00 PM | Report abuse

Also, maybe it was coincidence that the D just went into shambles once the calming presence of Schulz left the ice, but that is a pretty big coincidence.
-------------------------------

LMAO if you really believe that, you're the biggest MORON on here...

who died and made Jeff Schultz the next Nick Lidstrom???????

Posted by: joek443 | December 6, 2010 10:01 PM | Report abuse

Caps are a mess right now. Offensive and defensive systems are out of whack. They have to get this cleaned up quickly because they are staring down some serious problems on both ends.

Posted by: CDon

I wouldn't call the Caps a complete mess. Judging by their play and the posts here, the Caps were playing awesome the first 50 minutes. However, they failed to complete the game by making some poor plays. That doesn't call for a complete shakeup, it calls for more fine tuning.

Posted by: sgm3 | December 6, 2010 10:01 PM | Report abuse

Poti looked rusty. He has been out for so long you could tell he was rusty. Then add in the fact that he had a new D partner(Hannan), a few mistakes were going to happen.
---------------------

Like this is the first time Poti left a guy wide OPEN in front the net?

remember the Carolina game last week when they tied it up with 7 secs left, MORON???????????

Posted by: joek443 | December 6, 2010 10:03 PM | Report abuse

your = you're. One too many glasses of Pinot Grigio methinks.

Posted by: FloridaCapsFan | December 6, 2010 10:04 PM | Report abuse

FOR THE 100th time The only way you guys will ever win anything is to do the following

1..... A leader who is willing to play and both ends of the rink ..and thinks a Stanley Cup is more important than a WORLD Championship
2. ... GET RID OF SEMIN.....and more guys like Green
3. GET a Goaltender!!!!

Posted by: StanleyCup1907 | December 6, 2010 10:05 PM | Report abuse

Needless to say, the Caps are struggling. Dropping a 4-1 lead at home and in the third period to the dysfunctional Maple Leafs is simply inexcusable. Why couldn't they learn from the Thrashers and what they were able to accomplish this past weekend? It's going to take some big decisions to turn this thing around. Look out below - the Thrashers are on the move.

Posted by: Terptwin | December 6, 2010 10:06 PM | Report abuse

@joek443

Schultz may be struggling lately, but we could have used his long stick to break up passes the last 5-10 minutes! He is good at that, and thats what we needed on a couple of Toronto goals.


and again...just b/c someone disagrees with u does not make them a moron...I am sure if your hockey know how was THAT perfect, the NHL would have snatched u up for a coaching or GM position long ago!

Posted by: capscoach | December 6, 2010 10:06 PM | Report abuse

sgm3, it calls for a swift kick up the arse.

Posted by: FloridaCapsFan | December 6, 2010 10:07 PM | Report abuse

You have to be kidding me. The Caps at times looked good. This was a third period turd. You know BB would compare this team to The Oilers. Not even close. Looks like Erskine will play the next game Vermon. Sorry not having Scultz in there in the third period was unhelpful. Oh Well. Three in a row. The Caps look like they are going to have a rough December.

Posted by: pkme | December 6, 2010 10:07 PM | Report abuse

Hannan was doing his job near the wall, tying up his guy...

WTF was Poti doing???

Posted by: joek443 | December 6, 2010 10:07 PM | Report abuse

You have to be kidding me. The Caps at times looked good. This was a third period turd. You know BB would compare this team to The Oilers. Not even close. Looks like Erskine will play the next game Vermon. Sorry not having Scultz in there in the third period was unhelpful. Oh Well. Three in a row. The Caps look like they are going to have a rough December.

Posted by: pkme | December 6, 2010 10:10 PM | Report abuse

oh I know, he was covering his ZONE and playing sound POSITIONAL defense, right???

Posted by: joek443 | December 6, 2010 10:10 PM | Report abuse

Wow I bet mean ole BB will have a tough practice for the boys...then the cycle will repeat itself in a couple weeks. A Cup contender should not let a cellar dwelling team back into a game when they are holding a 4 - 1 lead in the 3rd at home. Even with one of the trades we all wanted having occurred, there is still something just not right.

Posted by: kcbrichmond | December 6, 2010 10:12 PM | Report abuse

@StanleyCup1907

Is this how u get your jollies? because you sound pathetic...yup...ovie could care less about a SC. those Russians only care about the money.

THE COLD WAR IS OVER PEOPLE!

prejudice and over reaction from a loss on the CI...what a surprise!

Posted by: capscoach | December 6, 2010 10:13 PM | Report abuse

This is the first time in a couple of years that I am actually having doubts. I feel that there's a glaring lack of winner mentality on team. As soon as the opposing team get close, we grip our sticks too tight and play like deer in headlights: BB no longer getting red and heated. I know, it's just December but this is becoming a serious and predictable pattern. What about staying angry? What about creating better habits? BB, no one is listening or learning...

Posted by: jakopz | December 6, 2010 10:13 PM | Report abuse

I will say it again, the Poti signing is absurd. In his 12 year career, he has been to the second round of the playoffs once. He is our veteran. Experience is not valued by this team. Nor killer instinct.

Right now, this team doesn't look like they have a deep run in them. Disappointing after our latest post season collapse.

Posted by: underpants2 | December 6, 2010 10:19 PM | Report abuse

I think it is time for a long team meeting...no coaches. The players need to take responsibility.

As a teacher (and I imagine coach) you can lead a horse to water, but you can't make them drink...no matter what joek443 says :)

Posted by: capscoach | December 6, 2010 10:21 PM | Report abuse

@joek443

Poti made a bad play on the 4th goal. That was terrible positioning. At what point did I say that Poti made a good play on that? I said your comparison to what happened to Schulz in the Atlanta game was idiotic because Schulz played his player properly. Poti did not.

It sucks that Schulz will be out 4-6 weeks with a broken thumb. Well, vermontcaps got his wish. We will all be able to see how Erskine can fair in the top 6 with Schulz out.

Missing Schulz in the 3rd hurt. As much as people dislike him on this board because he doesn't make big hits or make noticeable plays, his constant steady plays of deflecting pucks, blocking passes, getting in passing lanes, etc. was greatly missed in the 3rd period. The results are testament to that.

Posted by: sgm3 | December 6, 2010 10:25 PM | Report abuse

@jakpoz

I disagree that no one is listening because BB preached getting to the net after last game and you could see a much better net presence by the Caps throughout the entire game.

They played a horrible last 5 minutes. Poti looked rusty. He hasn't played in many games this year and will be behind other players at this point. He needs a few games to get back into the flow.

Posted by: sgm3 | December 6, 2010 10:28 PM | Report abuse

Anyone feel bad for MP? Guy scores two goals but is probably stuck in the locker room with the others being chewed out by BB!

Posted by: capscoach | December 6, 2010 10:28 PM | Report abuse

Last time we played TOR and TOR scored 3 goals in the 3rd, Schultz was on the ice for all 3 of those goals.

Just sayin...

Who knows what would've happened if Schultz didn't get hurt but I believe that in general, our issues in that end are a team level issue.

Posted by: tmac2yao | December 6, 2010 10:31 PM | Report abuse

"Anyone feel bad for MP?"

Nope, regardless of how many goals he scored he was still part of an epic collapse to a bad team.

Posted by: eorr53 | December 6, 2010 10:33 PM | Report abuse

I watch this team and they seem to be missing something. I do not think they are a Cup contender. Maybe they buy into their own press clippings. Ted's marketing strategy may actually hurt the team. The whole the Caps are certain for greatness thing. Talent but no killer instinct. I also think the constant tinkering with lines may not be helpful. No cohesion.

Posted by: pkme | December 6, 2010 10:34 PM | Report abuse

Here's that game sheet: http://www.nhl.com/scores/htmlreports/20102011/GS020165.HTM

I'm not saying we couldn't have used Schultz. I'm not that high on him but again, I think the issue is bigger than him. Whether he's as good as some people think or as bad as other's think... or somewhere in between, I just don't think we'll be a strong defensive team until there are some systemic changes to how we play defense as a team.

Posted by: tmac2yao | December 6, 2010 10:34 PM | Report abuse

@ sgm3

what's IDIOTIC is you can't tell the difference between serious analyses and poking a little fun at that BUZZ phrase on here, "good positional defense" as opposed to knocking down anyone you see in front the net like Komisarek did to Semin even though the Caps scored on that play.

Posted by: joek443 | December 6, 2010 10:35 PM | Report abuse

@pkme

It's early December. If that Caps were on a 10 game winning streak and dominating all their opponents, many people on here would be stating how worthless the regular season is and how it means nothing until April. Well that goes both ways. The Caps need to continue to improve(as does every team) and they will probably acquire a veteran center at some point before the trade deadline.

I will be more worried about their play if they were failing in April or May. If anything, this Caps team needs to have some bad regular season games in order to remind them how they have to play over 60 minutes.

It was a crappy last 6 minutes of the game. They have time to learn from it.

Posted by: sgm3 | December 6, 2010 10:39 PM | Report abuse

@eorr53

MP was a +2...not on for any GA...hence he was not part of the problem.

Posted by: capscoach | December 6, 2010 10:39 PM | Report abuse

I do think there are certain players that lack the necessary inherent compete level or "killer instinct" that you may be referring to (Flash was one of them so that trade probably helped a little) but I also think there are issues with how we defend as a team.

For the Caps to take a real and permanent step up defensively, I think there will have to be certain things demanded and drilled into all the players, forwards included, on a regular basis and I'm not sure that it's happening right now.

We've had plenty of defensive meltdowns with and now without Schultz.

Posted by: tmac2yao | December 6, 2010 10:39 PM | Report abuse

@sgm3

Yes, they were going to the net and let's hope (and pray it continues). However, in OT, they were spreading out like Pam Anderson. I know, it's 4-4, but seriously, go to the net when ur teammate is unloading. Again, the "good" habits that BB is always preaching, aren't sticking.

Posted by: jakopz | December 6, 2010 10:41 PM | Report abuse

@capscoach - Unfortunately that's not how a team works. I didn't say he didn't play well, he still lost as a part of the team and will suffer the consequences with the rest of them.

Posted by: eorr53 | December 6, 2010 10:44 PM | Report abuse

The one positive from tonight was that the 2nd line actually looked threatening and put great pressure on Toronto. We haven't seen the Caps 2nd line perform like that in a while. Now the question with MP is if he can continue to play that way. Hopefully he can, but we will see.

@tmac2yao

I think Schulz falls in between. I think he is a steady 2nd pair defenseman. But sometimes his quiet, steady demeanor can be steadying in times of panic that the Caps were going through over the last 6 minutes. A calm presence who can get his stick into passing lanes and just grab the puck and clear the zone is nice to have.

Also, with his loss it messed up the pairing as they got switched up due the Caps having only 5 D-men. It will be interesting to see who BB pairs with Green. My guess would be Hannan and to have Erskine with Poti. But I guess it is possible he pairs Erskine with Green and leaves the other two pairs alone so they can build some comradery(especially Poti and Hannan).

Posted by: sgm3 | December 6, 2010 10:46 PM | Report abuse

I will be more worried about their play if they were failing in April or May. If anything, this Caps team needs to have some bad regular season games in order to remind them how they have to play over 60 minutes.

Posted by: sgm3

Are you kidding? Where were you last spring?

Posted by: underpants2 | December 6, 2010 10:46 PM | Report abuse

This team just wilts when things get tough. Don't know if it's BB's fault or just the players, but that's the truth. I think it's time for a coaching change personally. I don't want watch tham wilt in the playoffs again. I'm tired of hearing about optional practices for a team the blows leads and gets beat 5-0 twice in 1 week.

I'm probably being too critical, but nothing about this team makes me think the can win in the playoffs...let alone a cup. I hope I'm wrong though.

Posted by: CAPSHOCKEY2 | December 6, 2010 10:48 PM | Report abuse

Jim Shoenfeld used to say he didn't mind seeing his D-men taking elbow or high sticking penalties sometimes to send a message...

the only message these clowns send is "park yourself in front our net, we won't touch you!!!!!!!!!"

Posted by: joek443 | December 6, 2010 10:48 PM | Report abuse

@jakopz

Yeah, OT was wide open, but I'm fine with the Caps playing wide open in OT because I like their chances in that sort of game than whoever their opponent is. I think their chances in that sort of game is much better than their chances in a shootout. This is only for a regular seasons 4-on-4 OT where you already have a point.

But they did listen and crashed the net. In addition, the Caps did sit back and play a trap style defense the last 7 minutes. As you could see the forwards were not pressing at all. Unfortunately the Caps forwards stayed too far back and allowed Toronto to gain the red line with ease and get the puck in with ease.

So the players were listening and playing defensively the last 7 minutes, but they actually played too defensively and didn't execute properly. Hopefully they continue incorporating a trapping sort of style with the lead in the last 7 minutes but execute it with much better proficiency. We all knew there would be bumps in the road with the Caps switching the system up some, but almost everyone on this blog said they were willing to take those bumps in a quest to be better defensively at the end of the year. This is a bump in the process of learning the new style. We will see how it turns up in April.

Posted by: sgm3 | December 6, 2010 10:53 PM | Report abuse

I hate when people start going crazy over meaningless December games. As much as these games seem so significant now, they are worthless. As we saw last year, doing well in the regular season means nothing, especially early on. The point of the regular season is to work out the kinks so that you are going on all cylinders come playoff time. Those teams end up winning the Cup. The Caps will be fine by the end of the season and I actually would prefer them getting a 2 or 3 as opposed to a 1 seed because then the overconfidence can't be as big of an issue. But bottom line is RELAX. These games don't matter.

Posted by: mja712 | December 6, 2010 10:54 PM | Report abuse

Joe

You are spot on. Every team owns us in front of the net. They do not scare anybody. Also upfront on our forward lines there is no one that is scaring. I like Hendricks and I think he has been the Caps best addition since Mike Knuble.

Posted by: pkme | December 6, 2010 10:56 PM | Report abuse

@underpants2

If you can't notice the differences in how the Caps approached the last 10 minutes of the game this year compared to last year then I feel bad for you. The problem was execution. They are incorporating a style they are not used to. There will be missteps. The goal is for them to have it straightened out by April. We will see how that goes.

The fact that they didn't do well defensively last year under a different style has no bearing on if they can or cannot pick up this new style and play it well.

Posted by: sgm3 | December 6, 2010 10:56 PM | Report abuse

a meltdown in the last three minutes has nothing to do with systems but a lack of discipline and teamplay. OVI watching defensively on the last goal was something else. keep him off the ice when we have a three goal lead.

Posted by: pkme | December 6, 2010 10:59 PM | Report abuse

@sgm3

Don't feel bad for me, of the two of us, I am the only one not living in a fantasy. Same players, coach, and gm. Nothing has changed, especially the system.

This organization refuses to learn from mistakes. Why is it that you cannot grasp that?

Posted by: underpants2 | December 6, 2010 11:03 PM | Report abuse

I'm not so sure that the 4th goal was entirely Poti as I watch the replay.

He, Hannan and Backstrom had created sort of a 3-on-3 on the far side and all had inside positioning on their men.

When the puck went into the corner, Backstrom tried to join Hannan and create a 2-on-1. Perhaps he would've been better served to say closer to Grabovski or whoever the pass was... at least make sure he was in the passing lane if he wanted to cheat.

Meanwhile, Ovechkin was on the near side completely unaware of MacArthur. He glanced at the TOR player up near the blue line but when you're facing a 6-on-5, it's not a man-to-man situation.

To me, Backstrom overcommitted and didn't cut off the passing lane and Ovechkin was completely oblivious to MacArthur. If he was aware of him, he could've at least had his stick on the right side of his body when the pass was made and still been in position to pressure the other player on the point if the puck ended up out there.

Poti could've perhaps reacted more quickly to Backstrom's mistake and gotten out further into the passing lane but I think that unlike Ovechkin, he was aware of MacArthur and trying to be in position to cut off the pass behind the goal.

Either way, I'd put at least some blame on 8 and 19 for that final goal.

Posted by: tmac2yao | December 6, 2010 11:03 PM | Report abuse

@mja712

I get these are meaningless games, but it's the way they are losing them that concerns me. If it doesn't concern you, I'm not sure why it isn't.

Posted by: CAPSHOCKEY2 | December 6, 2010 11:04 PM | Report abuse

@sgm3

Listen, I am not arguing with you (well, except about our OT which was terrible). My concern is that BB's issues with our performances never get corrected. They're fixed for a game or two but then we revert back to our self-entitled ice surfing. Yes, we have improved our PK but we are still poor at crashing the net in PP. I'm still hopeful we will continue to crash the net because I believe that's truly the sign of willingness to battle and desire to win.

Posted by: jakopz | December 6, 2010 11:06 PM | Report abuse

Where is Vermon? Even though Schulz was not on the ice for those three goals he would blame him for those goals because he was near the team. Where are you Vermon? Carlson looked like crap. I will agree that Erskin should be in the lineup. The Pens have won ten straight games. Look at Crosby' stats. Incredible.

Posted by: pkme | December 6, 2010 11:06 PM | Report abuse

Where is Vermon? Even though Schulz was not on the ice for those three goals he would blame him for those goals because he was near the team. Where are you Vermon? Carlson looked like crap. I will agree that Erskin should be in the lineup. The Pens have won ten straight games. Look at Crosby' stats. Incredible.

Posted by: pkme | December 6, 2010 11:06 PM | Report abuse

Backstrom may have also been thinking that he needed to pick up the guy that Poti was already in good positioning on. Grabovski probably doesn't even get the pass off if Backstrom reads the play better.

I hate to criticize one of the few forwards, centers or wings, that is pretty consistent defensively but he may have allowed that play to happen.

Perhaps Poti could've yelled something to him to let him know he had that guy coming in behind Hannan if in fact that's why Backstrom got out of position but regardless, I think there were at least 3 players that blew it on some level on that play.

Posted by: tmac2yao | December 6, 2010 11:09 PM | Report abuse

And DJ King got his ass beat again. We got an enforcer who can't win a fight. At least he doesn't bleed all over like Bradley.

Posted by: CAPSHOCKEY2 | December 6, 2010 11:11 PM | Report abuse

tmac2yao:
good analysis of how it's more a 'team breakdown' on d - than just one guy.

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | December 6, 2010 11:13 PM | Report abuse

@ CAPSHOCKEY2

Amazingly, King doesn't seem to bleed at all. He got pummeled and not a drop. At least a psychological advantage if he had more gas in him - he tires quickly.

Posted by: jakopz | December 6, 2010 11:14 PM | Report abuse

LOL...lose to the Leafs at home.....

Posted by: wendel2 | December 6, 2010 11:15 PM | Report abuse

LOL...lose to the Leafs at home.....

Posted by: wendel2 | December 6, 2010 11:16 PM | Report abuse

The Pens have won ten straight games. Look at Crosby' stats. Incredible.
----------------------------

I'm usually against superstars dropping gloves but it's hard to argue against when you look at what has happened to the Pens and Crosby since the fight.

Keith Jones said on VS the fight was more like Crosby taking his frustration out on his teammates... the Pens weren't playing well at that time and if you were a Pens player and saw your best player fighting, you probably were embrarassed to put him in that position.

Posted by: joek443 | December 6, 2010 11:16 PM | Report abuse

And DJ King got his ass beat again. We got an enforcer who can't win a fight. At least he doesn't bleed all over like Bradley.

Posted by: CAPSHOCKEY2 | December 6, 2010 11:11 PM

not a fan of bradley's bleeding - eh? :D

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | December 6, 2010 11:16 PM | Report abuse

@tmac2yao

Yeah, you are probably right about the 4th goal. There were errors made by a few Caps.

@jakopz

I agree that crashing the net consistently is critical for the Caps and their potential success in the playoffs. I am optimistic that they will play that way in the playoffs and crash the net hard. I'm not saying it is 100% that they will(just like it isn't 100% that they won't), but I am optimistic.

Posted by: sgm3 | December 6, 2010 11:17 PM | Report abuse

This game was garbage!

The first two periods were good but blowing a 4-1 lead in the third period is totally unacceptable. Especially to a lousy team like Toronto. Score card. The first line was on the ice for 2 of the goals against. The second line was on for one of them.

I'm feeling that if the Caps have a third period lead in the next game, our top line should sit out for the latter part of the period. Just cycle the 2nd, 3rd, and 4th lines. (Maybe Knuble can play with the second line during this cycling.)


Posted by: CapsFan75 | December 6, 2010 11:19 PM | Report abuse

everyone is missing the bright spot here - the caps are no longer 1st overall in the league. they can now play like they are the underdogs - they always play better in this position

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | December 6, 2010 11:20 PM | Report abuse

I'd love to be a fly on the wall when Boudreau and/or the other coaches break down defensive mistakes.

I just get the feeling that things aren't driven home, particularly to the forwards, in the same way that it is in other locker rooms.

Yes, I know that I'm completely speculating and I have no way of knowing other than from the repetitive mistakes that I see positionally by some of our players.

I do believe this much: It's either that the players are stubborn or uncoachable or they aren't being coach or being coached effectively enough in certain areas and it's not just about play in the d-zone. It's positioning all over the ice and certain decision-making that I see happening a little too often with this group.

Posted by: tmac2yao | December 6, 2010 11:20 PM | Report abuse

It's either that the players are stubborn or uncoachable or they aren't being coach or being coached effectively enough in certain areas and it's not just about play in the d-zone.
----------------------------

I know someone who can coach defense, Bill Belichick...

the Pats D looked horrible but you knew sooner or later Belichick would coach'em up... judging by the game tonight, he sure has

Posted by: joek443 | December 6, 2010 11:26 PM | Report abuse

they've got 53 games left

who thinks they'll get 53 or less
who says > 53?

i say they'll get all 106

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | December 6, 2010 11:26 PM | Report abuse

Hey joek,

Agreed about that Crosby incident and how it probably sparked his teammates psychologically. That very likely at least had some kind of impact.

If you want to tie that into how Ovechkin could have a similar effect on his team, aside from getting into a fight, I think that if Ovechkin showed the same determination that he shows to shoot the puck and deliver bone-crushing hits to the defensive side of things, it would have a trickle down effect on the entire team.

I'm not talking about those isolated good defensive plays that he makes, either.

I'm saying that if he's vocalizing the importance of defense on and off the ice and backing it up by working even harder defensively and consistently paying attention to his positioning, the rest of the team would absolutely take notice and follow suit.

Posted by: tmac2yao | December 6, 2010 11:28 PM | Report abuse

Basically, if he internally increases his sense of urgency when it comes to defense, that will end up being demonstrated outwardly and without a doubt have some kind of effect on the entire team.

If such an offensively-geared player like Ovechkin is talking about "defense, defense, defense" and backing it up with his play on the ice, how could anybody on the team not feel compelled to raise their sense of urgency in that area?

Posted by: tmac2yao | December 6, 2010 11:30 PM | Report abuse

tmac2yao:
true about ovi. if he put as much effort into d when they are up a goal as he does o when they are down a goal - i think they'd be much tougher to beat when they have a lead late in the game

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | December 6, 2010 11:33 PM | Report abuse

@pkme

Vermont had been railing against Schultz so badly over the last few days. His diatribes against Schultz were getting to the point of being offensive. While I know the guy hasn't been perfect as of late, there's a reason he's usually one of our top 2 defensemen in the Plus/Minus department and he must be doing something right.

Now he's out with a broken thumb -- for the next 4-6 weeks.

Posted by: CapsFan75 | December 6, 2010 11:34 PM | Report abuse

I dont mean to change the subject here, but does anyone else find it highly annoying during shootouts when the Caps PA guys goes "SAVE BY" even if the puck never hits the goalie. There was no "Save" on Kessel's shot that was post.

Posted by: nhl2011 | December 6, 2010 11:34 PM | Report abuse

ESPN recap has 55 out 4-6 with broken thumb.

Posted by: jdove80 | December 6, 2010 11:42 PM | Report abuse

The one positive from tonight was that the 2nd line actually looked threatening and put great pressure on Toronto.

We haven't seen the Caps 2nd line perform like that in a while. Now the question with MP is if he can continue to play that way. Hopefully he can, but we will see.

Posted by: sgm3 | December 6, 2010 11:44 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: mja712 | December 6, 2010 10:54 PM | are going on all cylinders come playoff time. Those teams end up winning the Cup. The Caps will be fine by the end of the season and I actually would prefer them getting a 2 or 3 as opposed to a 1 seed because then the overconfidence can't be as big of an issue. But bottom line is RELAX. These games don't matter.
-------------------------------

I really hope Mr. Leonsis and GMGM doesn't think the same way. Relax that we lost to 27th team in the leage at home, relax that we allowed 3 goals in third period, relax that its second time this seasons we have 3 games stragiht without a win... Want more things to relax about? should we relax that BB shuffling lines like they do in Las Vegas with cards...Do you want more things to relax about?
Koolaid better stop now, or we will see same old story. It is not about that we are loosing games left and right, it is about the confidence and team play. With that coach it is not there. Tonight at VC Goat was screaming fire Wilson right in the same moment when Lafs scored their goal... it should be fire BB instead, hopefully we all will understand it now and not after 1st round playoffs.

Posted by: beforeitstoolate | December 6, 2010 11:45 PM | Report abuse

My Kool-Aid tastes funny.

Posted by: AADCDERM | December 6, 2010 11:46 PM | Report abuse

On a positive note:

a. DJK, despite his beatdown at the hands of one of the top-3 fighters in the league, gamely served his purpose tonight. He had a strong check early, somebody had to confront orr, and I wish he would've done better for sure. I don't think, however, it was coincidence that Ovi went on a rampage immediately after, scoring and looking like his old destructive self. I think it pumped Ovi up to finally see someone sticking up for him instead of just scrumming it up (or not even that, for some mates)...it was a class act for Ovi to acknowledge DJK in the bin, and Locker himself before the meltdown it was the moment of the game. I do think he should've gone for rd. 2..unfortunately, there was never another opportunity (the culture, capscoach). Folks, there's no shame in losing 2 fights to colton orr (whom we should've signed when we could've). So thumbs up for DJK and Ovi

b. Matty P. What else can be said? I thought he should've stayed up last year, but was unimpressed w/his play earlier. That's the MP I knew from last year, let's keep our fingers crossed. And Fehr wasn't in the line-up. Gordon, whom I don't care for but's better than Steckel, looked like he picked up his game, too. So thumbs up for MP, Gordon, and the absence of Fehr

On a negative note:

ahh, the meltdown. There's plenty of blame to go around. I haven't seen the game stats, but after the Ovi/Orr/DJK emotionial high, seemed like the whole team disappeared. I'd like to see the ice time totals forwards, but I know Chimera was absent the whole game, and didn't see much cycling and grinding.

defensively, i haven't been impressed w/Hannan thus far, but beside Poti none of them looked good quite frankly. EVERYONE KNOWS WE MISSED ERSKINE TONITE AS THERE WAS A COMPLETE LACK OF PHYSICALITY. Carlson and Alzner struggled mightily, w/Alzner being the better of the two.

And what's up w/the pp giving up soooo many 2-1's against? Ultimately, the buck stops w/BB....I mean, the Leafs were riding an 8-game losing streak, they struggle to score, and they overcame a 4-1 deficit BECAUSE THEY WERE PLAYING THEIR HEARTS OUT FOR EACH OTHER AND THEIR COACH. Can't fault neuvy tonight, but at the end of the game he didn't make the big saves the team needed him to.

ahh, the meltdown. After the emotion of DJK/Ovi/Orr, the team deflated.

Posted by: vermontcaps | December 6, 2010 11:50 PM | Report abuse

Folks it pains me to admit this but so far this year Crosby has been carrying the whole team on his back. He plays with less talented players than OVi and yet OVI is doing less than years past. I actually am not one of The Caps fans who hates on Crosby. Truth is I despise Mario not Crosby. I just wish OVI would play better and maybe they need to break up that first line and do some different things. heck put Gordon on at center. It is time to do something different. Out of the box thinking.

Posted by: pkme | December 6, 2010 11:50 PM | Report abuse

Well Erskine will be back on Thursday Vermon. You have your wish. Carlson did look awful tonight.

Posted by: pkme | December 6, 2010 11:55 PM | Report abuse

hopefully we all will understand it now and not after 1st round playoffs.

Posted by: beforeitstoolate

Because you "understanding" that BB should be fired will accomplish what? If I think BB should or should not be fired, that would accomplish what? The same can be said for each and every poster on here.

I still don't understand why it seems like people get little to no enjoyment out of watching these games. If it isn't enjoyable to watch, why do you watch? It is entertainment. If you are not being entertained then why don't you choose something else to entertain you?

It isn't any of our jobs to watch these games. It is meant to be fun. If it isn't fun for a person then I think it would be in that person's best interest to do something else. This isn't for any other Caps fans this would only be for the person who is miserable watching the Caps play. What is the point? Honestly, I really don't get it. (This goes for all similar fans of any sports teams who are only miserable and angry when they watch)

Posted by: sgm3 | December 6, 2010 11:55 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: vermontcaps | December 6, 2010 11:50 PM
a. DJK, despite his beatdown at the hands of one of the top-3 fighters in the league, gamely served his purpose tonight. He had a strong check early, somebody had to confront orr, and I wish he would've done better for sure. I don't think, however, it -------------------
did you watch a game? That guy is getting .65 million per year salary and had a chance to be on a bench for 8 games this season.. That guy can't skate, doesn't know how to play position hockey in front of the net, brr, he can't even shoot the puck. The only reasons that $650,000 bag of something was playing today because Toronto got goons like Colton Orr, so we had to put someone.. easy as that.

Posted by: beforeitstoolate | December 6, 2010 11:55 PM | Report abuse

That doesn't call for a complete shakeup, it calls for more fine tuning.

Posted by: sgm3

somewhere i've heard this dumb tune before.

Posted by: cstanton1 | December 6, 2010 11:59 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: sgm3 | December
Because you "understanding" that BB should e fired will accomplish what? If I think BB should or should not be fired, that would accomplish what? The same can be said for each and every poster on here.

I still don't understand why it seems like people get little to no enjoyment out of watching these games. If it isn't enjoyable to watch, why do you watch? It is entertainment. If you are not being entertained then why don't you choose something else to entertain you?
-----------------------------

I remember Apr 28, 2010 like it was yesterday, to refresh your memory thats when Capitals lost game 7 to the 8th team in game 7 at VC. I think many of us deserve to be angry and upset when we pay $2k+ per season ticket to watch our beloved team. We support out team, we follow them, we go to away games to support our bouys, and I think we, fans, may be have a small voice on decisions that our team makes, many on here probably still remember when 15k people were chanting fire Hanlon after embarassing game versus Atlanta in November, next day Glen was fired. The answer directly to your question, what will be accomplished after we fire BB, that our team will play hockey, not AHL style dump and chase hockey. I don't blame BB, he doesn't know how else to play this game, how would he know?

Posted by: beforeitstoolate | December 7, 2010 12:04 AM | Report abuse

Not that my opinion really matter at the end of the day but I thought the Caps should have gotten rid of BB after the Montreal disaster. I say we give him the year and if this team does not at least reach the conference finals then he should be let go. I even thought earlier in the season The Caps looked like the team that played like the Canadians. I will say if they keep playing this way BB will not last the season.

Posted by: pkme | December 7, 2010 12:17 AM | Report abuse

vermontcaps:
schultz doesn't fight because we have found out that he ...

... has a glass thumb

that was just for you.

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | December 7, 2010 12:21 AM | Report abuse

@beforeitstoolate

I wasn't saying what would be accomplished in firing BB.

I asked what would be accomplished for a person on this board to "understand" that BB needs to be fired. Because you proclaimed earlier that everyone on this board needs to "understand" that BB needs to be fired. Why? How would me, you or any other person on this board "understanding" that BB needs to be fired effect anything? It wouldn't, so why do you care? (Also, I do not think that BB needs to be fired).

Yes, you have a right to be angry. Everyone does(not just Caps fans, everyone has a right to be angry at whatever they want). But my question is about what you have the right to do, it is asking people why they choose a so-called entertainment choice that makes them furious? Why not just watch a movie, or go out to eat, or watch a show, or whatever?

This question is more for the fans who are always angry. The ones who complain when the team loses and complain when the team wins. It just seems that people are choosing to watch something that makes them miserable when they could just as easily choose something else that doesn't make them miserable and may even put a smile on their face.

My SUGGESTION(I'm not telling people, just suggesting) is that it's sports, it's entertainment. It's supposed to be fun. The Caps are one of the best and most exciting teams in the NHL. Try to enjoy some of it.

Posted by: sgm3 | December 7, 2010 12:26 AM | Report abuse

Posted by: pkme | December 7, 2010 12:17 AM |

if we will keep giving him a year after a year, our young guns will be old farts... Semin contract is up, Green stopped playing.. Varlamov is RFA after this year, and we all know that he will ask much more than $760,000 that he is getting right now.

Posted by: beforeitstoolate | December 7, 2010 12:28 AM | Report abuse

You could say I'm now drinking the goat juice and have next to no confidence in the Caps for the playoffs this year.

Posted by: CapsFan75 | December 7, 2010 12:29 AM | Report abuse

You could say I'm now drinking the goat juice and have next to no confidence in the Caps for the playoffs this year.

Posted by: CapsFan75 | December 7, 2010 12:29 AM

say it isn't so.
now you march right over to the fridge and take a big swig of kool-aid - and don't use a glass, you drink it right out of the carton :D

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | December 7, 2010 12:32 AM | Report abuse

@ vermont

Boy, I wish we had a coach who wouldn't let his players quit.

The Leafs are going nowhere and have minimal talent. Yet Ron Wilson wouldn't let them quit. His teams never quit. We know that first hand.

Somehow Wilson got fired ,and we ended up with Bruce "the cocktail napkin kid" Cassidy. That move alone called for a GM change. Google Butch and see what he's up to in the pro ranks.

For those who will chime in about Wilson being an average NHL coach and San Jose under performed (yada, yada, yada,), Wilson almost stole the gold Medal for the US. We were no match for that Canadian talent. Yet, we hung in there "big time". Wilson has guts. He may carry a cUp someday.

I wonder if GMGM is thinking about how these guys just mailed it in against a bad team whose coach took us to the finals. Man, the George McPee 12 year experiment (night mare) just came full circle.

George your picks and signings have "no heart". Wilson just kicked your @ss. Second round at best with this group of WIMPS. Then, Ted sees the light. I hope.

Posted by: Hunterforcoach | December 7, 2010 12:35 AM | Report abuse

Posted by: sgm3 | December 7, 2010 12:26 AM | Report abuse

My SUGGESTION(I'm not telling people, just suggesting) is that it's sports, it's entertainment. It's supposed to be fun. The Caps are one of the best and most exciting teams in the NHL. Try to enjoy some of it.

It is Sadomasochism to enjoy watching your team lose for 36 years in a row... just saying. and regard to: "Why not just watch a movie, or go out to eat, or watch a show, or whatever?" That is what real fans do, they support the team. They support a team when 7k people go the to game, look back to 2004-2006 era, just look what happens in real hockey towns, not mickey mouse BS hockey town USA as we proclaim to be one, people care about their team, even if that team is 27th in the league, or like Edmonton Oilers that are really bad. You probably will never understand that, but thats just my opinion and a million others hockey fans around the globe.

Posted by: beforeitstoolate | December 7, 2010 12:35 AM | Report abuse

My father who was one of the first season ticket holder to The Caps said to me the other day not to fall in love with this team because the Caps will manage to disappoint when it counts. He had season tickets from 1974 to 1990. Cancelled his season tickets because The Caps broke his heart every year. I must have watched in person with him over 500 games in the dreary Caps Center. Of course I had plush seats for 2005-2006 and 2006 and 2007. The Caps were terrible but the team was more fun because expectations were so low. Now they are high and they will still disappoint. Of course I can no longer afford the games because my business went into the toilet. Just as well because come playoff time they will disappear quickly. The Caps are becoming the Chicago Cubs of hockey. Still love it though and they are the only tolerable and enjoyable team in DC.

Posted by: pkme | December 7, 2010 12:44 AM | Report abuse

@capt-kirk

well, i purposefully didn't mention ****55 in my post because at the end of the day, i'd rather he be sitting upstairs instead of erskine due to the coach making the right personnel decisions and not because of injury. I'll leave it at that the hockey gods have given me reprieve; call it karma or whatever, but tonight was the start of Erskine's exile...go figure? (I'll grant that the meltdown didn't happen on his watch...now that we'll have the pairings i've been yelping about, LET THE BATTLE BEGIN FOR WHO SITS WHEN ****55 returns, no favorites!!)

Posted by: vermontcaps | December 7, 2010 12:51 AM | Report abuse

vermon.

did you wtach OVi watching the paint dry on that fourth goal. sure POTI screwed up but so did OVI The forwards on this team do not support their d very well.

Posted by: pkme | December 7, 2010 12:57 AM | Report abuse

@pkme

i agree that the forwards aren't very disciplined when it comes to supporting the d at times (i think i mentioned playing for each other as a difference tonite? that's part of it...)

truth be told, i didn't see the 4th goal....i left the room and listened, knowing all too well what the outcome would be. the entire backline was listless, even before ****55's injury...i spoke favorably of poti earlier because of his 3 assists (involvement) and the fact he'll be Erskine's partner in crime for the foreseeable future. I'll use selective seeing on him tonite, as BB does with his boys every night

Posted by: vermontcaps | December 7, 2010 1:31 AM | Report abuse

"That is what real fans do, they support the team."

@beforeitstoolate

That would be make some sense for the fan who actually enjoys the games when their team is good.

But I never understood this argument. It is entertainment. Neither you, nor me nor anyone on here is a part of the team or is related to someone on the team. If it always makes you angry, why continue watching?

The "that's what real fans do" sounds like a comment sold to sports fans by marketing agencies of the professional sports leagues.

For people who are always angry, I think they should take a step back and see why they continue to watch and follow millionaire athletes push vulcanized rubber up and down ice if watching these athletes do this only leaves them miserable.

Posted by: sgm3 | December 7, 2010 7:13 AM | Report abuse

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