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McPhee: Corvo and Walker won't return

Defenseman Joe Corvo and winger Scott Walker have been informed that they won't be re-signed, GM George McPhee said today.

Corvo and Walker - both pending unrestricted free agents - were acquired at the trade deadline to bolster the Caps' roster for the playoffs.

"They were great, but we can only carry 23 when the season starts," McPhee said.

Corvo finished the playoffs with a goal and an assist and a plus/minus of minus-2. The veteran had two goals and four assists and a minus-4 rating in 18 regular season games.

Walker, meantime, suited up for just one game in the playoffs and did not record a point. He played in nine games during the regular season because of injury and finished with two goals and an assist.

When asked about the status of center Eric Belanger - the other pending UFA acquired at the deadline - McPhee said, "There's some discussion there."

McPhee declined to discuss the team's other free agents, saying that decisions are still being made.

McPhee was in town earlier today for the GM meetings.

By Tarik El-Bashir  |  June 2, 2010; 8:11 PM ET
 
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Comments

I'm glad Corvo is gone - he's not the type of dman we need. I wouldn't have minded Walker staying - the grit he brings is something the Caps could use, but there's only so much roster space. Still, I wish them both the best.

Posted by: timmyv38 | June 2, 2010 8:25 PM | Report abuse

No Corvo. Thank you for small things.


Cordially,
RBlatch

Posted by: rblatch45 | June 2, 2010 8:28 PM | Report abuse

Corvo was a cancer in the locker room. Wherever he goes, there will be many Caps lining up to take a 5 minute major.

Posted by: WCAPS1 | June 2, 2010 8:34 PM | Report abuse

No surprise there.

1) While Walker was a great guy, he was basically acquired to be a spare player.

2) Corvo, while the best defenseman available at the deadline, wasn't really a good fit with this year's edition of the Caps.

Wish them well.

Posted by: CapsFan75 | June 2, 2010 9:13 PM | Report abuse

@ WCAPS1

yeah, like you would know...

Posted by: joek443 | June 2, 2010 9:18 PM | Report abuse

WCAPS, you got anything to back that up?

Posted by: ogdennash | June 2, 2010 9:19 PM | Report abuse

The story of Scott Walker taking the Metro to his first game at the phone booth made a fan out of me. Best of luck, Scotty, I'll cheer for ya whenever you pass through again.

Posted by: vtavgjoe | June 2, 2010 9:31 PM | Report abuse

In a totally unrelated topic, GM's made a recommendation in regard to head hits - 5 minute major with a game misconduct for "a lateral, back pressure or blind-side hit to an opponent where the head is targeted and/or is the principal point of contact."

Here's the link: http://www.nhl.com/ice/news.htm?id=530813

Posted by: timmyv38 | June 2, 2010 9:42 PM | Report abuse

unlike the moves made in 2008 for Fedorov, Huet and Co. at the deadline the moves in 2010 were duds.

The Caps were too smug to realize in the offseason that consecutive Game 7 losses at home in the playoffs meant that a move for a Chris Pronger or Scott Niedermayer to anchor the defense and provide leadership on the blueline was really necessary.

But the team decided to use numbers to throw at the problem. Take all the 22 and 23 year old players in the organization and count on depth and the ability to interchange players would be enough to limit their exposure.

McPhee was wrong. Boudreau was wrong.

The other thing this team needs is a veteran goaltender with a track record in the playoffs.

I would like to see this club trade Semin and use that $6M slot to acquire a D or G.

Posted by: leopard09 | June 2, 2010 9:48 PM | Report abuse

leopard09, what the heck is that about?

First, Huet and Federov in '08 didn't get us any farther than we got this year, so how were those trades better? I realize they were a large part of what got the Caps to the playoffs, but they didn't do much else after that.

Second, there wasn't a Pronger/Niedermayer type available, so was there any point to that comment?

Third, do you know how many players the Caps have who are 23 or under? Backstrom, Varly, and Carlson - their best dman in the playoffs, one of their best forwards, and a goalie who has done well both years in the playoffs, considering the hole the Caps have been in when he's been brought in.

Fourth, goaltending isn't the issue. Varly and Neuvirth have held their own.

Posted by: timmyv38 | June 2, 2010 9:59 PM | Report abuse

I can see trading Semin, but the Caps top two needs are a real threat blueliner, one who can skate and maul as needed, and the other is second line center. Flash can also be put on the trade block for improving the blueline and center.

Posted by: JIMALLCAPS1 | June 2, 2010 10:08 PM | Report abuse

@ leopard09

I was with you till the point about the need for a veteran goalie... you must have been listening to Feinstein.

if you've noticed who's in net for the teams that have made the finals, there's absolutely NO need for a veteran goalie.

Posted by: joek443 | June 2, 2010 10:23 PM | Report abuse

I have to say the rules of hockey are just plain stupid. If they want to review a score, then simply STOP play and review it, otherwise, it's too bad so sad. I mean, what if the other team scores, or if the original team is guilt of a flagrant foul?? Are they just going to pretend it didn't happen? What if the original team takes someone out and they should be gone on a game misconduct?? Everything is just funnzies?? Does football say we'll wait until the other team scores a touchdown then we'll review the play?? Hockey, get a brain and stop being second rate.

Posted by: Ireland2 | June 2, 2010 10:25 PM | Report abuse

too bad walker was injured. i liked him and his toothless grin =)

Posted by: rubyx4soho | June 2, 2010 10:29 PM | Report abuse

Ireland, the current system has nothing wrong with it. What would you do if play is stopped for that reason, and there was no goal? The way they do it is the only sensible way to. And that comparison to football was sheer idiocy, seeing how football STOPS AT THE END OF EVERY PLAY!!!

Posted by: timmyv38 | June 2, 2010 10:30 PM | Report abuse

Ireland2 :
but they do check the replay a the proper point about half the time on reviews - those times when it is called a goal and there is a natural stoppage in play

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | June 2, 2010 10:38 PM | Report abuse

In soccer, another continuous play sport, the linesman will indicate if there is a score, or an infraction, and the referee will stop play and make the call. If there is no call, then play is restarted by a drop ball. I believe hockey has the same sort of restart (notice the sarcasm). This is not rocket science people; either play, or make the call, but you can't make the call down the road. Like I said, if the other team scores, or if the original team is guilty of a flagrant foul resulting in a game misconduct, you simply can't ignore it.

Posted by: Ireland2 | June 2, 2010 11:06 PM | Report abuse

Ireland, what you are talking about only comes into effect in one situation - when the puck might have gone in but the ref didn't see it. It would be very unfair to the team who scored for it not to be counted simply because the ref wasn't paying enough attention or didn't have a good view. It happens maybe once for every three or four games.

Given a choice between the goal not being allowed due to human error, and it having to be looked at later, anyone with sense is going to choose the second.

Posted by: timmyv38 | June 2, 2010 11:13 PM | Report abuse

Right, and the team that loses a player to injury because the "other" team had a free shot, or if a team scores during this free time, like theat is fair. I don't care if the the ref didn't get it right the first time or not, that's what assistants are for. They can either call it, or move on. There is no such thing as free time in real sports. There's no crying in baseball either (had to throw that in).

Posted by: Ireland2 | June 2, 2010 11:21 PM | Report abuse

Well, I didn't have either Corvo or Walker in my cap calculation for next year - so I'm not surprised.

I don't have Belanger either, but I'd take him back at about $1.5M if we moved Semin and got back Staal and saved $2M that way and moved Flash and signed Volch and moved Erskine and got like Clutterback and saved like $2M that way. The marginal cost for Belanger vs Perreault then would be about $700K and when you consider what he brings in defense and faceoffs and when partnered on a line with Clutterbuck and Chimera how it would be a truly effective grinding/checking line - well, you can see that, so far, in releasing Walker and Corvo, GMGM is following the tominsocal1 plan to a T.

In a related note, I don't get Versus here in the hotel so what in God's name is the Ireland person talking about? (Is that "Jill" Ireland?) Did something happen intonight's game?

Posted by: tominsocal1 | June 2, 2010 11:23 PM | Report abuse

Ireland, by the way, part of what you are saying is wrong is actually covered by the rules. In Rule 78.6, it says "Any penalties signaled during the period of time between the apparent goal and the next stoppage of play shall be assessed in the normal manner, except when a minor penalty is to be assessed to the team scored upon, and is therefore nullified by the scoring of the goal."

So if a major or worse was committed during the time between the reviewed goal and the stoppage, it would still stand - even if the goal counts. If a double minor was called, it would be assessed as a single minor, with the other minor being nullified by the goal.

However, if a goal is what makes the stoppage, then that goal would be cancelled for the 1st goal. From what I've been able to find, it seems as though that has yet to happen though.

Here's the page with the rules for this situation: http://www.nhl.com/ice/page.htm?id=26489

Posted by: timmyv38 | June 2, 2010 11:26 PM | Report abuse

tom, there was a goal scored by the Flyers that was not called at first. There was a significant amount of time between when it was scored and the next stoppage.

And Ireland, you might want to study the NHL referee system, because you are making a lot of ignorant statements. The ONLY officials who can rule a goal are the referees - the linemen are not supposed to be down in that area for the most part, and that is not one of their duites. However, the video review judge is the assistant who is supposed to look for that - and he doesn't have much a way to alert the ref mid-play.

Posted by: timmyv38 | June 2, 2010 11:30 PM | Report abuse

Ireland2: What in God's name are you griping about? Most people in the world don't have enough to eat and here you are with a full stomach and a computer and all your needs attented to and you are worried about a player maybe getting hurt because they kept playing because the ref missed the goal and it got replayed?

Memo to Ireland2: Get yourself a roll of paper towels and head down to LA and after you've cleaned up that oil spill thingy, then you have the right to post minor gripes.

Hockey has the best rules and best refs in sports. No, it's not perfect. You want perfection, ask Adam and Eve to suit up with orange armbands. Otherwise, this is about as best as it can be.

Yours truly,
tominsocal1

btw, please pass me an apple

Posted by: tominsocal1 | June 2, 2010 11:30 PM | Report abuse

tom, to be entirely fair, this was a goal where an absurdly long amount of time passed between the goal and the next stoppage - about 1:40. However, that doesn't justify the stupidity of Ireland's posts.

Posted by: timmyv38 | June 2, 2010 11:33 PM | Report abuse

timmyv38: I have spent thousands of hours and hundreds of bottles of wine contemplating the NHL system of replay and how, like Star Trek, you can then re-do history like it never really happened.

I have decided that the system they have is really good.

This is no different than the NFL like when the ref drops a flag and they keep playing until a whistle. There has been lots of talk about how in the NFL you get a flag and the players really don't know what they should do. This gives the team with the ball a "free play." It also means people can get hurt on a play that might not, ini the end, ever exist.

Is this any different than the German soldier in "All Quiet on the Western Front" who got shot and killed after the armistice?

Yes, in the case of the soldier, it was much worse. Except that was fiction, except that in real life it must have really happened (witness Andrew Jackson battle of NO happened after an armistice).

I am rambling; Ireland though needs to find his/her smiling eyes.

Posted by: tominsocal1 | June 2, 2010 11:39 PM | Report abuse

tom, I am with you. In fact, I said earlier that there is nothing wrong with the system - or rather, that it is as good as it can be. Although, I actually didn't know (until I went and looked it up) that a penalty committed during the time between a reviewed goal and the stoppage was assessed like normal.

By the way, with the NFL and "free plays", what I have always heard that used for is when there is a penalty on the defense, and so if a turnover occurred, it would be nullified anyways.

Posted by: timmyv38 | June 2, 2010 11:48 PM | Report abuse

I really hope we also don't sign Belanger. All that speed and faceoff wins don't add to much when you are neither a physical grinder, nor a dangler. He is a nothing - he has no game except speed into the zone. What to do with the speed or the puck, still figuring that piece out.

I'd much rather see MP. Assuming Johnassen will be either 2nd or 3rd line center.

Posted by: Political_Stratgst | June 2, 2010 11:50 PM | Report abuse

Political, Belanger is much more than that. He is a defensive specialist, and an excellent PKer. He doesn't have much offensive ability, but a 3rd liner doesn't need that. If the Caps would fix their PK system, Belanger could be extremely effective for them.

However, I could see MP taking 3rd line center and letting Belanger go.

Posted by: timmyv38 | June 2, 2010 11:55 PM | Report abuse

timmy: Witness this scenario:

The ball snaps. As the QB drops into the pocket, a flag drops on the far side of the field.

John Madden (gushing and and waving arms akimbo) tells us there's a penalty on the defense. Actually, it's defensive offsides on the side of that line judge (the only foul it could be and the play still going) excapt that the players (except Peyton Manning, who has 17 eyes incl three on top his helmet) don't know it.

The play goes on. Remember, anything the defense does DOESN't COUNT (or so you think) as the offense has a "free" play.

The defensive end pummels Manning well after the pass and wipes that Gomer Pyle smile off his face until the end of time. Well, that's 15 yds on the defense where it would have been only 5 for offsides.

While an offensive player punches the defensive end (earning a unsportsmanlike conduct penalty and offsetting BOTH of the defensive calls), the pass is intercepted.

The defensive safety returning the interception (not knowing the play CAN'T count) gets hit and fumbles.

The offensive halfback picks up the fumble and takes it in for a touchdown with a facemask on the defense on the fumble return, with a player geting injured.

Now, it all gets nullified by offsetting penalties. Play it back though - what if the offensive player didn't strike the DE who pulverized Manning and wiped that goof-ball county bumpkin grin off his face? Then you would have an offensive touchdown where the defense could have at least minimalized the play into penalty only by taking a knee after the interception.

On the 8th day, the Lord God said we should rest (and watch sports). And on the 9th day, the Lord God replayed what happened on the 8th day.

Except was there ever a 9th day? Bible students?

And what about the poor guy who got injured?

Posted by: tominsocal1 | June 3, 2010 12:18 AM | Report abuse

rofl... that's a little excessive, isn't it? It would be an entertaining play to watch though.

Posted by: timmyv38 | June 3, 2010 12:23 AM | Report abuse

If the Caps use their 3rd line in a checking role fashion I do not think MP can play on it unless he improved his defense tremendously. According to Jasper's player review MP had one of the worst even strength defensive ratings. He was also bad on faceoffs.

I would love to acquire a top 2nd line center, but that may not be possible with the cap if Volchenkov is signed.

Assuming Volchenkov is signed and the cap increases $2M:

How about the possibility of having MP play on the 2nd line(or 1st with Ovie and Knuble) so he would be on a threatening scoring line which in turn defends since the opposing team plays defensively.

Then sign John Madden and Belanger to play the 3rd and 4th lines (either can go on either one). That would add much more depth at center throughout the lineup and signifcantly improve the PK with Madden. It also would not cost too much.

This would then have to lead to the release of Gordon and/or Steckel. I like both players and how hard each plays but I honestly belive there are better players out there to fill their roles.

The risk is clearly that the one of the top 2 lines would not have an elite center. But I think MP could do some real damage with Ovie and Knuble. This also leaves cap room to improve at D and 4th line wingers and/or leave cap room for deadline acquisitions.

Posted by: sgm3 | June 3, 2010 12:24 AM | Report abuse

sgm3, those ideas sound plausible. If that approach were to be taken, I would say put MP on the 1st - Ovie has been able to work with 2nd line-caliber centers before. Also, Steckel is already re-signed for a couple seasons, while Gordon is a free agent after this season - so if one of them is to go, it would be Gordon, unless Steckel was traded.

One question - who would you have as the wingers for 2nd, 3rd, and 4th under this scenario?

Posted by: timmyv38 | June 3, 2010 12:29 AM | Report abuse

smg3:
if MP is bad on faceoffs, i don't think i'd want him on the first line. winning the draw in the offensive zone (to ovi) is good for more than a few goals (some of which are clutch). backstrom still needs to improve at the dot to be able to help that line be even more effective. ovi's centerman needs to be better than average on faceoffs - accepting less (imo) would reduce productivity

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | June 3, 2010 12:34 AM | Report abuse

This last season, Backstrom was 49.9% on faceoffs, and MP was 45.2%. The Caps do have a few very good faceoff men (Steckel and Bradley, for instance, are both around 60%), so maybe they could work on that with Backs and MP. That would be the main downside to MP. He is fast, creative, and works incredibly hard - but probably isn't ready for a 1st line position yet.

Posted by: timmyv38 | June 3, 2010 12:41 AM | Report abuse

Marleau took 615 faceoffs this season... that's 5th on the Sharks this season, and not by much. You don't do that without playing a significant amount of time as center.

Posted by: timmyv38 | June 2, 2010 7:10 PM |

That's because Marleau takes the draw a lot instead of Joe.

Danny-Joe-Patty have been together almost all year.

Pavelski is their usual 2C.


http://www.fearthefin.com/2010/5/31/1489348/san-jose-sharks-depth-chart-center

Posted by: richmondphil | June 3, 2010 12:43 AM | Report abuse

richmondphil, when you say Joe, do you mean Thornton or Pavelski? Because I thought Marleau played with Thornton and Heatley for the most part, and Thornton took a ton of faceoffs this season.

Posted by: timmyv38 | June 3, 2010 12:56 AM | Report abuse

You want to be able to Roll 4 lines, with 3 lines able to score and 1 line for checking and neutralizing...

The Caps have their third line center already and his name is Perreault. I think he is capable of playing 2nd but thats alot of pressure on the kid. The Caps need to aquire a good two way center and need to add a stay at home crease clearing defender. I actually think Jercina has the ability to fit this role but they need more than one. Erskine worries me with his concussion and although I like his attitude, Caps could use someone like him but faster.

Posted by: cirrus_nine | June 3, 2010 1:28 AM | Report abuse

I'm also expecting Erskine and both Morrisons to be gone. And what's the deal with Juice. Anyway, I would love to figure out how to work Volchenkov into the cap. If not him, a young Paul Martin would be great.

Green - Volkenchov (or another top blueliner)
Poti - Carlson
Alzner - Juice?
Sloan - Schultz (reserve line - yes Schultz, obviously works well in the system as the league leader in +/-

I don't know that you get that 2nd Center now. Bring up Perrault or Codi Eaton to try and fill the position. If they do not work out, then opt to trade Semin or Neuvirth for a 2nd liner (and vet goalie if Neuvirth is involved). Belanger would be a great 3rd line center. Despite going with Gordon in the playoffs, I still think Steckel is a great 4th line Center, and Gordon can be trade bait for D or 2ndC

Ovie - Back - Knuble
Laich - Flash - Semin (with Eaton and MP tryouts)
Chimera - Belanger - Fehr
Laing - Steckel - Bradley

Also, find time for Andrew Gordon, who apparently plays in front of the net, and will probably be Knuble's replacement in the future. Likely, Semin will be traded at some point next year, Flash will be moved back to the wing where he belongs, and we will be able to find someone in that 2nd center slot.

Posted by: mcgratsp | June 3, 2010 1:35 AM | Report abuse

cirrus, whether Perrault is a good fit for 3rd center depends on what type of 3rd line you want. What usually works best is for the 1st/2nd lines to be scoring lines, 3rd line to be a checking line, and 4th line to be a grinding/energy line. If that was the setup, MP is totally unsuited. However, if the 3rd is to be a scoring line, then he would work - but then you would need 6 scoring wingers, and that can be a bit more difficult. As it stands, the Caps do have 6 - if you keep Flash and Semin around. However, if that were to happen, it would be very hard to fix the defense.

Posted by: timmyv38 | June 3, 2010 1:39 AM | Report abuse

mcgratsp, why would you put Flash as #2 center? He has shown already that he can't consistently play to that level. Let Flash go, and replace him with a true 2nd liner. MP would be a better fit than Flash - but getting one of the many UFA veterans would make much more sense.

Posted by: timmyv38 | June 3, 2010 1:45 AM | Report abuse

People continue to talk about getting rid of Semin. I would love it. Unfortunately, Ovi would hate it. And that means it won't happen.

Posted by: DKSW | June 3, 2010 1:55 AM | Report abuse

What if we don't go for Volchenkov and instead go for Sutton...who could mentor our young guys. and Koivu for 2nd line center. The get rid of Shoa MO, Sloan, and Erskine and combine those salaries for one more solid but cheap defensemen...this is also assuming Flash is gone, and possibly even Schultz( though I like him).

Lines would be something like this.

Green/Sutton
Alzner/Carlson
Poti/cheaper but solid new guy.

Posted by: capscoach | June 3, 2010 7:58 AM | Report abuse

PLEASE....not the slow pylon Andy Sutton...did you not see the way the Pens skated around him making him look silly on a consistent basis in their series? He had one good shot on a Dman skating into center ice with his head down, other than that he was useless!

Posted by: PhilR | June 3, 2010 8:15 AM | Report abuse

@PhilR

He IS considered a very good defensive defensemen with some grit...which we need. If not him then maybe someone like Hamhuis or Paul Martin even...I would love Volchenkov, but he might just be too expensive.

Posted by: capscoach | June 3, 2010 8:20 AM | Report abuse

Willie Mitchell if his head has recovered?

Posted by: capscoach | June 3, 2010 8:21 AM | Report abuse

Sutton may have that rep but I have certainly not seen those qualities and from some other posters comments it appears others agree. I like Hamhuis and Martin.......actually not too familiar with Mitchell however. I also like Regher out of Calgary but unsure of his contract situation and getting ready to step into a meeting so don't have time to research it....

Posted by: PhilR | June 3, 2010 8:26 AM | Report abuse

When are people going to stop saying "The Caps need a veteran goalie with playoff experience"? Look at the teams in the finals and their goalies. Same thing with Montreal - no real experience to speak of. There are only a handful of 'money' goalies out there - Brodeur (past prime), Luongo, help me out here. Yet where are those goalies - at home, on the golf course.

Posted by: theshawn | June 3, 2010 9:32 AM | Report abuse

Walker is a beeoutch anyways. Ask Aaron Ward.

Posted by: j3rockstar | June 3, 2010 9:35 AM | Report abuse

I have to agree with PhilR about Andy Sutton. After seeing that Pens series and watching him get abused I have no desire to see him on the Caps. I would rather just keep Erskine at $1.25 than pay Sutton. They are basically the same player.

I think Hamuis, Martin, Mitchell(if healthy), Zbynek Michalek, and Tallinder would all be possible cheaper alternatives than Volchenkov. IMO, Sutton would be a waste of money and a huge mistake.

Posted by: sgm3 | June 3, 2010 9:35 AM | Report abuse

No tears shed here. Now for Semin. Please, please, please get rid of him. Does anyone have the stats redily available as to against which teams he scored his meaningless goals?

Posted by: kkd76 | June 3, 2010 9:41 AM | Report abuse

You guys want a vet. goalie, and you want Semin gone?? Seems easy enough.....Go talk to Boston.

Posted by: j3rockstar | June 3, 2010 9:48 AM | Report abuse

I'm probably in the minority here, but I didn't think either of these guys ever should have been brought here.

The Caps had TOO many players, BB had to sit healthy people every night and I thought that ruined chemistry. After the trades a lot of people looked lost, they never looked the same to me.

All they needed to do was get a top defensman and they never did that. Belanger was a good pick up and I hope they bring him back, but beyond that they didn't really need any of those guys.

They still need a denfenseman so I don't get what thier philosophy is.

"I would like to see this club trade Semin and use that $6M slot to acquire a D or G."

They don't really need a goalie, I think Nuevy is good enough to win with. Look at the Flyers for example, thier goalie was a late season pick-up. They have good defensemen. The Habs have good defensemen, the Blackhawks have good defensemen.

While I am 100% convinced he will be a star for many years, there's a HUGE problem when people are saying that Carlson is your best defenseman and he's only been called up for a couple weeks.

You give up 2 goals in the first 10 minutes of every game, you're going to be in trouble. You win championships in EVERY sport with defense, not offense. Until management figures that out the Caps are going to keep getting bounced in the playoffs. They have yet to win a series in the playoffs without going 7 games, against "lesser" teams. Something is wrong with that.

- Ray

Posted by: rmcazz | June 3, 2010 9:50 AM | Report abuse

@timmyv38

If the Caps went the route of signing Volchenkov, Madden, re-signing Belanger, and using MP, I was thinking the lines as being:

Ovie/MP/Knuble (assming MP improves on faceoffs)
Laich/Backstrom/Semin
Chimera/Belanger/Fehr (energy line)
LW(Clutterbuck)/Madden/Bradley(or other RW)this would be the defensive line that face other teams top lines.

Just because I listed them from line 1 to 4 does not mean that the Madden line will play less than the Belanger line. I just listed them in a order.

D:

Poti/Volchenkov (best defensive pairing)
Schultz/Green
Alzner/Carlson

Posted by: sgm3 | June 3, 2010 9:51 AM | Report abuse

I have heard from a fellow hockey fan who is generally accurate about such things that Gonchar wants to return to DC to finish out his career "at home". What do you think folks? Good idea to sign him if it is true?

Posted by: chopin224 | June 3, 2010 9:54 AM | Report abuse

if you've noticed who's in net for the teams that have made the finals, there's absolutely NO need for a veteran goalie.


that thinking only applies to teams with a strong sense of defense.

not sure if you've watched many games the past few seasons, but the Capitals are not on that list.

Posted by: P-Mac | June 3, 2010 9:55 AM | Report abuse

@chopin224-
I think that is a strong poss. However, it all comes down to how much he is going to ask for to return home.

Posted by: j3rockstar | June 3, 2010 10:03 AM | Report abuse

I have heard from a fellow hockey fan who is generally accurate about such things that Gonchar wants to return to DC to finish out his career "at home". What do you think folks? Good idea to sign him if it is true?

Posted by: chopin224

Is this a joke? I hope so.

Posted by: underpants2 | June 3, 2010 10:10 AM | Report abuse

As tempting as it is, the caps don't need a big time defenseman from outside the organization. Not pronger (last summer), nor Volchenkov this summer will make this team any better.

What WILL make the team better is a combination of the following:

A proper center for Semin. Unless Management can get a center that can compliment Semin, then this team doesn't deserve to have him. (I admit, maybe this isn't possible and perhaps Semin should be traded for some players that could constitute a more consistent yet less dynamic 2nd line).

A coach (and assistant coaches) that can design and get this team's top forwards to buy into a 2-way game. Management should realize by now that with 98% season ticket renewal they don't need to score 6 goals a game in order to fill the house.

Posted by: LesGrossman | June 3, 2010 10:17 AM | Report abuse

"they were great"

lol, yeah, ok. Has McPhee ever owned up to his mistakes?

And Belanger can follow them out the door as well. He's not a player who rises to the occasion or plays a competitive game. I'd rather see a stronger more competitive kid out there taking his spot.

Posted by: cstanton1 | June 3, 2010 10:18 AM | Report abuse

sgm3,

Sorry, I in no way see MP playing first line center next year, period. Backie and Ovie will not be split up so finding a vet 2nd line center is ket to play between Laich and Semin (if he is still here).

I also do not like the idea of Madden, he has lost a few steps and would be entirely too expensive to bring on board.

I am with others, trade Semin for that trus vert 2nd line center they need and move Fehr up to play along with Laich. Put MP on the 3rd line with Chimera and maybe Andrew Gordon?? And resign Belanger as your 4th line center.......then you still have the money to get the dman you want and if you can possibly pawn Poti off on someone you can get 2 dmen.

Posted by: PhilR | June 3, 2010 10:33 AM | Report abuse

Chimera/Belanger/Fehr (energy line)

---------------

with all due respect, this is by no means an "energy" line. Energy lines run around and hit everything that moves, they forecheck hard, and they wear down the opposition. Belanger skates fast, thats about the extent of his contributions in an energy role. Fehr's got some grit to him but he's not by any means a punishing forechecker nor is he a great skater. Chimera's a great skater with size who avoids more contact than a guy his size should. You're lucky to get him to finish 2 checks a game.

Posted by: cstanton1 | June 3, 2010 10:36 AM | Report abuse

@PhilR-

Do you not have Steckel in your lines for next season??

Posted by: j3rockstar | June 3, 2010 10:40 AM | Report abuse

Time for GMGM and crew to prove the doubters wrong.

I think all the parts are in place or available on the market to make this a cup winning team.

Posted by: wtf_e_fehr | June 2, 2010 6:47 PM | Report abuse

yeah its only been like 13 yrs. Lets give him even MORE time to prove us wrong. My prediction - the Caps make more questionable moves between now and the start of the season (some good, some bad), the fans get all excited and proclaim the Cup is ours and use meaningless info to back up their claims, the doubters again point out the key elements that are missing, the fans with blinders on call the doubters "haters", and McPhee's team underachieves yet again.

My long-term prediction, McPhee gets fired next off-season. Although I have to admit, that would take some courage and vision. Which I have yet to see from Ted w/regards to his version of Vinny Cerrato.

Posted by: cstanton1 | June 3, 2010 10:43 AM | Report abuse

When BB put Chimera/Belanger/Fehr together they performed very well together. Personally, I thought he should have used that more as the 3rd line in the playoffs.

The title of the line is meaningless, but the line has very good speed, a great faceoff guy who plays very good positional defense. A big, fast checker winger who instigates some, another big winger(Fehr) who creates many turnovers in the offensive zone which leads to scoring opportunities.

I think that would be a fine energy line who would dominate other 4th lines, and the Clutterbuck/Madden/Bradley line is the defensive line.

Posted by: sgm3 | June 3, 2010 10:46 AM | Report abuse

I am with others, trade Semin for that trus vert 2nd line center they need and move Fehr up to play along with Laich. Put MP on the 3rd line with Chimera and maybe Andrew Gordon?? And resign Belanger as your 4th line center.......then you still have the money to get the dman you want and if you can possibly pawn Poti off on someone you can get 2 dmen.

Posted by: PhilR | June 3, 2010 10:33 AM | Report abuse

McPhee doesn't have the guts to trade Semin. But I agree, thats the type of trade you need to make to shake up the chemistry on this team and bring in a different element. And I'd rather have Steck over Belanger as 4th line center. Steckel despite his lack of speed does a ton of good things right esp in the role of a 4th line center.

And trading Semin and including another player if necessary should bring back a good defenseman AND a strong two way center. It doesn't have to be a 80point player either. Just a strong competitive player who plays well at both ends and "hates to lose". No more acquisitions for guys who don't overtly hate to lose. This team has too many guys who already play that way, its time to change it up. Dump Flash, Semin, Belanger upfront.

Posted by: cstanton1 | June 3, 2010 10:48 AM | Report abuse

"I'm glad Corvo is gone - he's not the type of dman we need."

Um, we need every D-Man we can get. It seems the type we need we never get. It's always someone's cast off that we sign to a huge contract or a draft pick...And who knows when if Poti will be back...

Posted by: Krazijoe | June 3, 2010 10:49 AM | Report abuse

in regards to Ovie keeping Semin from being traded: Ovie has much bigger things to worry about than Glass Joe Semin, like transforming his game from the mostly one-dimensional style he plays now. That is enough to keep the Great 8 busy for a while.

GMGM sends his "run to the cup" picks packing. Corvo was a bust from day 1. i feel bad for Walker because i assume he was picked up for the grit he could provide in the playoffs. only problem was that Fat Boy Boudreau didn't get the memo. Good luck wherever you land, Scotty.

Posted by: doughless | June 3, 2010 10:50 AM | Report abuse

j3rockstar,

I have Steckel as the reserve centerman in case of injuries or just to sit someone who is not performing. He could also play wing on the 4th line like Gordon did this year if needed. Sorry, I feel Belanger is an upgrade over Steckel easily so no, he would not be in my every day line-up.

Posted by: PhilR | June 3, 2010 10:52 AM | Report abuse

I think that would be a fine energy line who would dominate other 4th lines, and the Clutterbuck/Madden/Bradley line is the defensive line.

Posted by: sgm3 | June 3, 2010 10:46 AM | Report abuse

the best "energy" line we've had in the last few yrs has been Steckel centering Bradley and Laing. Cheap and very effective. Why they went away from that is beyond me.

I also see no reason why the Caps would pursue Cal Clutterbuck. I mean..I know why I'd do it. But not the Caps.

Posted by: cstanton1 | June 3, 2010 10:52 AM | Report abuse

Any way to get Backes out of St. Louis?

Posted by: underpants2 | June 3, 2010 10:54 AM | Report abuse

To me, Belanger is a nice add as 3rd line center. Caps need a strong 2nd line center for sure. Dealing Flash and Semin gives GMGM lots of cash to play with to get that 2nd line center and a top line defenseman, or a goalie. is Niemi a UFA after this season??

Posted by: doughless | June 3, 2010 10:54 AM | Report abuse

GMGM sends his "run to the cup" picks packing. Corvo was a bust from day 1. i feel bad for Walker because i assume he was picked up for the grit he could provide in the playoffs. only problem was that Fat Boy Boudreau didn't get the memo. Good luck wherever you land, Scotty.

Posted by: doughless | June 3, 2010 10:50 AM | Report abuse

Walker was never a good fit with the Caps from day 1. Part of it was he's not the same player he used to be. And part of it is he doesn't fit the Caps' personality. Walker would've stuck out like a sore thumb if he played the way he is used to playing. Guys like Walker have a huge leash on them when they play for a team like the Caps. When the trade first went down, I said repeatedly that the Caps would most likely not give Walker any real opportunity to play. That was why I was hesitant to even be excited about his acquisition. The only way he was going to get any play time was if we had a ton of injuries.

Posted by: cstanton1 | June 3, 2010 10:56 AM | Report abuse

To those on here that think that GMGM is going after a certain Defenseman that has 5 syllables in his name (2 in front and 3 in the back)... you are correct...

If you think it's Anton Volchenkov, I playfully laugh at you.

Name me one time, just ONE that a rumored caps roster move (trade or UFA), reported weeks in advance has actually panned out.

You all are really going against GMGM's normal behaviorial patterns to think the AV rumor is true.

Not An-ton Vol-chen-kov
Think Pa-vel Ku-bi-na

Kubina fits our system better than Volchenkov!

Posted by: FrankM73 | June 3, 2010 10:57 AM | Report abuse

Any way to get Backes out of St. Louis?

Posted by: underpants2 | June 3, 2010 10:54 AM | Report abuse

Vancouver already tried that by signing him to an offer sheet and the Blues matched. And it was the right move. In Backes they have a young, tough, big goal scorer. He leads that team in hits and offensive chances every night. They'd be dumb to let him go

Posted by: cstanton1 | June 3, 2010 10:59 AM | Report abuse

i would take Kubina. GMGM should have tried to pick him up at this years deadline. that said, i don't give a rats a$$ about the Caps "system." one word: weak.

Posted by: doughless | June 3, 2010 11:00 AM | Report abuse

Would not mind seeing Kubina in the least!

Posted by: PhilR | June 3, 2010 11:00 AM | Report abuse

To those on here that think that GMGM is going after a certain Defenseman that has 5 syllables in his name (2 in front and 3 in the back)... you are correct...

If you think it's Anton Volchenkov, I playfully laugh at you.

Name me one time, just ONE that a rumored caps roster move (trade or UFA), reported weeks in advance has actually panned out.

You all are really going against GMGM's normal behaviorial patterns to think the AV rumor is true.

Not An-ton Vol-chen-kov
Think Pa-vel Ku-bi-na

Kubina fits our system better than Volchenkov!

Posted by: FrankM73 | June 3, 2010 10:57 AM | Report abuse

damn..you nailed it. One can't say for certainty, but if I had to bet one way or another, I'd say Kubina would be the McPhee type of player and AV would not.

And I know at least one person on here is a huge Kubina fan, but I am not. I saw him play a bunch last yr and I was not impressed.

Posted by: cstanton1 | June 3, 2010 11:01 AM | Report abuse

i digress, but I must say that I am truly enjoying Pronger's antics against the Hawks. the Caps need a little of that attitude.

Posted by: doughless | June 3, 2010 11:04 AM | Report abuse

"In a totally unrelated topic, GM's made a recommendation in regard to head hits - 5 minute major with a game misconduct for "a lateral, back pressure or blind-side hit to an opponent where the head is targeted and/or is the principal point of contact."

Here's the link: http://www.nhl.com/ice/news.htm?id=530813

Posted by: timmyv38 | June 2, 2010 9:42 PM"

I would like to ask the blog posters here if this would have made a difference in last night's game. I thought that TWICE, a Flyer hit a BlackHawk player hard enough on the head to knock off the helmet, yet I don't believe either time there was even a penalty. I thought the refs were very biased against Chicago. I even think the announcers are pulling for PHI. Why? I have no idea.

In re: GMGM:

cstanton1 wrote: "they were great"

lol, yeah, ok. Has McPhee ever owned up to his mistakes?"

Geez, what do you want, cstanton1? You want a GM who trash talks soon- to- be ex-players and talks publicly about decisions that in hindsight, weren't the best? Personally, I'd rather let the actions speak for themselves---the guys were let go so obviously they didn't work out. No need to kick them in the rear end on their way out the door. I liked Walker and am sorry to see him go. Corvo had good intentions, but every time he was on the ice I cringed---he took so many shots that went straight into a guy right in front of him (and were then turned over.) But I do wish them both well and am grateful for their efforts.


Posted by: dccitizen1 | June 3, 2010 11:04 AM | Report abuse

if we got Kubina, most of you would want him traded by the midpoint of next season. Our forwards abused him last year. They camped out near Kubina and he didn't do anything about it until he finally got so frustrated at being taken advantage of in his own crease area that when one of our forwards stormed the crease yet again he finally did something and knocked that player into the net. Kubina is big and strong but he doesn't use that to his advantage as much as he could. He's not a punishing player on defense and he doesn't protect his crease. He's just a bigger version of Poti. Now while some of you may be in love with how Poti played at times in the playoffs, this team doesn't need another dman chewing up a roster spot who doesn't play a menacing brand of hocke on D.

Posted by: cstanton1 | June 3, 2010 11:07 AM | Report abuse

@Doughless: I whole hearted agree... more 'tude and toughness with swift of feet would be a perfect addition to the blueline... but I'm just not holding my breath... lol

@Cstanton: Don't get me wrong, I'd love to have AV on the team, but not at 4.5, more like 3.25...

I think Kubina will get about 4.25 per for 3 seasons... Kubina is a much better overall D thatn AV, IMHO!

Posted by: FrankM73 | June 3, 2010 11:07 AM | Report abuse

Geez, what do you want, cstanton1? You want a GM who trash talks soon- to- be ex-players and talks publicly about decisions that in hindsight, weren't the best?
---------------------------------

yes, to half of that. He should take PUBLIC accountability for his own mistakes. He sure goes out of his way to give himself credit for moves. Its time that he starts to own up to his mistakes. He's a self-serving bum.

Posted by: cstanton1 | June 3, 2010 11:11 AM | Report abuse

cstanton:

i think the bigger issue for Caps defense, aside from personnel, is the coaching. i am not sure that Woods brought much different when it comes to defensive schemes. Boudreau doesn't know what the word defense means. how about letting Evason go, moving Woods to that slot and bringing in an asst coach that actually knows soemthing about D??

Posted by: doughless | June 3, 2010 11:12 AM | Report abuse

Time for GMGM and crew to prove the doubters wrong.

I think all the parts are in place or available on the market to make this a cup winning team.

Posted by: wtf_e_fehr | June 2, 2010 6:47 PM | Report abuse

yeah its only been like 13 yrs. Lets give him even MORE time to prove us wrong. My prediction - the Caps make more questionable moves between now and the start of the season (some good, some bad), the fans get all excited and proclaim the Cup is ours and use meaningless info to back up their claims, the doubters again point out the key elements that are missing, the fans with blinders on call the doubters "haters", and McPhee's team underachieves yet again.

My long-term prediction, McPhee gets fired next off-season. Although I have to admit, that would take some courage and vision. Which I have yet to see from Ted w/regards to his version of Vinny Cerrato.

Posted by: cstanton1 | June 3, 2010 10:43 AM |

LOL...HATER!

Posted by: wtf_e_fehr | June 3, 2010 11:14 AM | Report abuse

No need to kick them in the rear end on their way out the door. I liked Walker and am sorry to see him go. Corvo had good intentions, but every time he was on the ice I cringed---he took so many shots that went straight into a guy right in front of him (and were then turned over.) But I do wish them both well and am grateful for their efforts.
----------------------

there are ways to admit that you F'd up. Without trashing Walker and Corvo. I don't blame the players at all. They performed upto reasonable expectations IF you understood what they were really bringing to the table. Corvo was always suspect defensively. The only folks who didn't understand that apparently was our GM and his front office. Walker was an over the hill gritty leader who was never really allowed to contribute what he could.

no, i don't blame the players one bit.

Posted by: cstanton1 | June 3, 2010 11:14 AM | Report abuse

Geez, what do you want, cstanton1? You want a GM who trash talks soon- to- be ex-players and talks publicly about decisions that in hindsight, weren't the best?
---------------------------------

yes, to half of that. He should take PUBLIC accountability for his own mistakes. He sure goes out of his way to give himself credit for moves. Its time that he starts to own up to his mistakes. He's a self-serving bum.

Posted by: cstanton1 | June 3, 2010 11:11 AM |

You sir, are hilarious.

Posted by: wtf_e_fehr | June 3, 2010 11:19 AM | Report abuse

why didn't Ted interview Yzerman?? stupid

Posted by: doughless | June 3, 2010 11:22 AM | Report abuse

Ted's constant goal is have the caps in the playoffs every year competing for the Cup.

-Playoffs in 08, 09, 10... check, check, and check.
-constant sellouts, check!
-new jerseys that sell alot, check!
-core players signed long-term, check, and check!
-an exciting team to watch, check!
farm teams mimicing the caps with success, check (Bears, 4 cup finals appearances, 1 cup, maybe 2)
-financially smart hockey moves, check!
-building the team through the draft, check!

GMGM is doing what Ted wants... build a salary cap manageable team that is very Cup competitive!

Why would he get fired, or BB for that matter, if he's doing EXACTLY what the Owner is asking?

People, read the signs of what the owner wants! He's not getting fired for hitting all cylinders... and if/when a cup is won, he's got serious job security...

Posted by: FrankM73 | June 3, 2010 11:27 AM | Report abuse

Some people are never happy I suppose.
GMGM saw the opp. to make some moves at the deadline (just like everyone on here begged for). He gave it all he had to get this team ready for a Cup run. He grabbed any player that was available that could help.
The players failed.
Not the coaching staff, and certainly not GMGM.
I'm sure these comments will go over well. :)

Posted by: j3rockstar | June 3, 2010 11:28 AM | Report abuse

Well, cstanton1, all I can say is that letting the guys walk is as much an admission that they weren't right for the team as you're going to get. GMGM is not going to wear a hairshirt for you. Your attitude towards him seems really bizarre to me---very hateful. I can understand disappointment and general disagreement with him (if that's how you see things), but you go out of your way at every opportunity to just bash the guy. Ditto to the people who harp on BB for his physical attributes---wow, just so unnecessary.

So, anyway, did anyone notice the flying helmets last night?

Posted by: dccitizen1 | June 3, 2010 11:32 AM | Report abuse

lets talk about some 2nd round draft choices shall we? Just over the past 8 yrs.

2002 - Max Daigneault (bust)
2003 - Steve Werner (bust)
2004 - Chris Bourque (AHLer), Mikael Yunkov (bust)
2005 - traded up to get Finley and Pokulok in the 1st round so no 2nd rounders.
2006 - Seabrook (traded), Neuwirth, Bouchard (AHLers to this point)
2007 - Josh Godfrey (ECHL), Ted Ruth (traded)
2008 - Eric Mestery (chose not to re-sign), Kugrshyev (jury's out but word is he's another finesse Euro)
2009 - Orlov (jury's out but word is he plays a decent two way defensive gm)


-------------------------------------------

lotsa wasted opportunities by our crack staff.

Posted by: cstanton1 | June 3, 2010 11:35 AM | Report abuse

You can make that argument for 29 other GMs!!!

Posted by: j3rockstar | June 3, 2010 11:45 AM | Report abuse

how about loudmouth Boudreau?? does that insult delicate sensitivities??

Posted by: doughless | June 3, 2010 11:47 AM | Report abuse

@dccitizen1

GMGM basically handled it with as much class as you can. He obviously did not want to re-sign them because he didn't get the results he was hoping for, but he said it in a way that was complimentary to the players.

It would serve no good to anyone to go out right now and criticize the players in any way. It would have only been childish and selfish of GMGM if he did that, but he didn't.

This is called managing with class and treating others with dignity. It would be nice if more people in this world acted like GMGM.

Posted by: sgm3 | June 3, 2010 12:01 PM | Report abuse

@cstanton:

What's your point? Every team's staff has wasted opps (except for New Jersey with Lou) and made their fair share of mistakes.

Proof that the draft is a guessing game past the first 5 picks is right in the following, 98 and 99 drafts by the Wings!
http://www.hockeydb.com/ihdb/draft/teams/dr00005492.html

Do you really think that all 30 teams would have passed on Zetterberg and Datsyuk 5, 6 and 7 times had they known what those 2 would be capable of? Heck no! they would have been drafted in the top 5 with each class... but it's all uncertain!

Penguins:
http://www.hockeydb.com/ihdb/draft/teams/dr00007475.html

Capitals:
http://www.hockeydb.com/ihdb/draft/teams/dr00008871.html

I'm happy to have the players we have at the contracts we have them at. That shows the the right people are in the right positions to make the decisions.

Posted by: FrankM73 | June 3, 2010 12:04 PM | Report abuse

good - clean up that mess...both were useless.

Posted by: lylewimbledon | June 3, 2010 12:09 PM | Report abuse

Experts on NHL Home Ice and the NHL Network went over every teams trade deadline moves. As far as the experts were concerned the Capitals did a fantastic job and improved their chances in the post-season. I wasn't too psyched about the moves, but again, experts thought the moves were good. With that being the case I guess GM and his staff weren't the only ones fooled. Of course arm chair GMs and coaches know better than people that eat and crap hockey. I'm NOT saying I am in the eat and crap hockey group so don't twist my words.


In this team's history the Capitals put together the teams that those of you keep saying we need. The Caps have had solid defensemen and solid goaltenders. Tough gritty players, but little to no scoring. Crap Druce lead the team one year in the playoffs, that says it all. What was the result? They lost. Those teams wouldn't even make the playoffs these days because they weren't successful in the clutch and grab era.

I really don't want ultra gritty players. Carcillo for example has embarrased himself and his team in the last two games. First he laid Carter out in game 2. Yesterday he literally tripped over his own stick while trying to figure out what he was going to do with the puck before he got it. Then he had the bad giveaway resulting in a Chicago goal. He's a friggin' joke.

As far as Gonchar, if it's true he wants to come back. I for one would not want his wish granted. The bastard REFUSED to stay in Washington for the rebuild, he wanted out. This teams progression would have been better if he would have stayed with the Caps in the first place.

Posted by: fanohock1 | June 3, 2010 12:15 PM | Report abuse

re: Semin, grinders

no need to trade him and he does not have to become a grinder - he gets the puck on net and creates good chances. The grinders are supposed to finish those chances. Nothing wrong with Semin and we're unlikely to improve.

Caps problem was we were too damn good and it was hard for them to take opponents seriously enough. Maybe they've learned this time. Anyway, why trade the guy when he's in a contract year?

Posted by: RedLitYogi | June 3, 2010 12:15 PM | Report abuse

Why hate on gonchar for leaving? He didn't want to play for a loser and thats what the caps were then and I wouldn't respect him if he did. Players should want to play for teams that plan to contend for the cup not rebuilders.

Now if you want to hate on Gonchar for his defense, go ahead.

Posted by: caps512 | June 3, 2010 12:23 PM | Report abuse

@fanhock1

I wouldn't want Gonchar for the money he wants becase he basically is an offensive defenseman and a PP specialist now and the Caps don't need that. He is a lesser version of Green. The Caps need a Volchenkov type defenseman to get a more well rounded defensive group.

Posted by: sgm3 | June 3, 2010 12:24 PM | Report abuse

fanohock1,

Once again you take the things out of posts that suit your point but do not consider the overall posts of others. I have not seen one person on here say we want a whole team full of grinders and gritty, stay at home dmen......if that were the case there would be people saying to trade Backie and Ovie because they have too much skill to be on that type of team.

What is being said is that we have gone from one extreme to the other and the middle ground must be found. Gritty grinders have their place and are needed on EVERY team....period, as well as tough stay at home dmen. A balanced team is what is needed, some of both type of player.....that is what I take from the posters asking for change.

Posted by: PhilR | June 3, 2010 12:34 PM | Report abuse

It would serve no good to anyone to go out right now and criticize the players in any way. It would have only been childish and selfish of GMGM if he did that, but he didn't.
----------

tell you what it does do - it lets McPhee OFF the hook. And I have a feeling based on his past comments that this was his primary motivation. To make himself look less incompetent.

Posted by: cstanton1 | June 3, 2010 12:36 PM | Report abuse

Experts on NHL Home Ice and the NHL Network went over every teams trade deadline moves. As far as the experts were concerned the Capitals did a fantastic job and improved their chances in the post-season. I wasn't too psyched about the moves, but again, experts thought the moves were good. With that being the case I guess GM and his staff weren't the only ones fooled. Of course arm chair GMs and coaches know better than people that eat and crap hockey. I'm NOT saying I am in the eat and crap hockey group so don't twist my words.

----------------

experts? like who exactly? nhl tv "analysts" ? please.

I guess I'm smarter than all of them then, including our own esteemed GM. I hated the Corvo trade because he's a defensive liability. I wasn't impressed with Belanger and felt his "gritty" namesake was a misnomer. But I didn't hate that trade either, just didn't think it was impactful. I liked Scott Walker as a player but expressed serious reservations about his contribution to us because I felt he wouldn't be able to crack our lineup.

Just because an equally dumb subset of "hockey experts" felt McPhee was a genius doesn't let him off the hook for clearly bad decision making at the deadline, yet again.

Posted by: cstanton1 | June 3, 2010 12:39 PM | Report abuse

re: Semin, grinders

no need to trade him and he does not have to become a grinder - he gets the puck on net and creates good chances. The grinders are supposed to finish those chances. Nothing wrong with Semin and we're unlikely to improve.
----------------

newsflash - all successful hockey players even if they are of the highly skilled variety need to work hard and grind it out esp in the playoffs. You don't get to choose to be a perimeter player when time and space is at a premium. You think the Chicago and Philly skilled players are simply playing a perimeter game and not grinding it out? Tell that to guys like Jeff Carter who has certainly raised his game in the corners.

Posted by: cstanton1 | June 3, 2010 12:42 PM | Report abuse

OK, Gonchar blew if for us in the playoffs too. How's that? He was a no show for the Pens this year too. What if Ovi wanted to leave when he was a rookie because the Caps stunk. How about Backstrom deciding not to join the team in the fall of 2007 because the Caps stunk. When a team rebuilds there are certain pillars that you want to leave in place, Gonchar was one of those pillars. If he was 35 at the time I would be fine, the clocks ticking. He was only 30 though.

For those that haven't followed hockey long there is a story about a young player that was drafted #1 overall and refused to sign with Quebec because they were a horrible team. That player was traded to Philadelphia and in return Quebec got two 1st round draft picks and a player named Peter Forsberg. Quebec moved to Colorado and of course Forsberg won Stanley Cups and the young player, Eric Lindros, never won a Cup. If Lindros would have gone to Quebec he would eventually had team mates like Sakic and Roy and his name would probably be on the Cup. Quebec fans dislike Lindros to this day. Good players that think they are great should want to be part of a re-build to show just how good they are. Again, the older players that want a last shot somewhere else, that's totally understandable. Gonchar, especially after how well he was treated, put his nose in the air. He did eventually win the Cup, by being part of the Penguins rebuild.

Posted by: fanohock1 | June 3, 2010 12:51 PM | Report abuse

I think Kane's style of game is extremely similar to Semin's style of game. The Hawks have been doing fine even with Kane's horrible style that never succeeds in the playoffs. Kane has actually done some good things too. Who would've guessed that speed and skill can actually contrinute to success.

Posted by: sgm3 | June 3, 2010 12:54 PM | Report abuse

I'm pretty sure we can get Witter on the cheap. :)

Posted by: j3rockstar | June 3, 2010 1:00 PM | Report abuse

@sgm3

the difference is kane is willing to go along the boards and take a hit to make a play.

Posted by: lylewimbledon | June 3, 2010 1:02 PM | Report abuse

ESPN rumors:

Caps may target Nabokov

WHY?

Posted by: lylewimbledon | June 3, 2010 1:03 PM | Report abuse

Sutton/Witt=PYLONS

Posted by: PhilR | June 3, 2010 1:05 PM | Report abuse

I don't understand the fascination of so many people with a small, one-dimensional player like MP as our 2nd line center. The top teams in the playoffs all had a quality 2nd line center who could play both ends of the ice. There is no one on the current roster who fits the bill. I like Belanger as a 3rd line center and PK specialist if he's willing to sign for a reasonable amount.

The front office should be figuring out ways to free up some salary cap to sign a second line center and a shutdown defenseman. Trading Flash would be a good start. I'd also let ShaMo, BMo, and Juricina leave as we should be able to get upgrades from Hershey for any of those three.

Posted by: wizfan89 | June 3, 2010 1:07 PM | Report abuse

They got two firsts, Chris Simon, Forsberg, Steve Duchesne, Mike Ricci and maybe Hextall, can't remember. Used a first pick for a young goalie they eventually traded with others for Roy.

The Lindros trade MADE the Nordiques/Avs franchise what it became. Maybe best trade in history of hockey, equalled by Dallas getting half the Vikings for H Walker I think it was.

I don't want Gonchar.

Out: Semin, Flash, Erskine
In: Staal (from Pitt for Semin), Volch and Clutterbuck (from Minn for Flash & Erskine)

Make those deals and print your SCF tickets! :)

Posted by: tominsocal1 | June 3, 2010 1:10 PM | Report abuse

tominsocal1,

Do you really want to trade Semin to the Pens and have him play along side Crosby or Malkin against the Caps 4 times in the regular season and 7 times in the playoffs? Not so sure I would want that at all......isn't there a player in Staal's class in the Western conference to trade Semin to????????

Posted by: PhilR | June 3, 2010 1:15 PM | Report abuse

@tominsocal1

I agree trading Semin for Staal would be a very good deal for the Caps. But I don't think that should be in our possible offseason moves because I don't believe there is any way that will happen.

The Pens would have to be crazy to give up a center with Staal's talent who is signed for 3 more years at $4M/yr. I think the only person on the Pens more untradeable is Crosby.

Posted by: sgm3 | June 3, 2010 1:16 PM | Report abuse

Tom,

As much as I would enjoy you being right, the smart money from Vegas is betting against you on Staal and Clutterbuck.

Wouldn't be surprised at Volch being signed, hopefully for no more than 4.25m per.

Look to Chicago for a trade partner. They must dump $$, they have no choice.

Posted by: Steve_R | June 3, 2010 1:17 PM | Report abuse

@wizfan89

"I don't understand the fascination of so many people with a small, one-dimensional player like MP as our 2nd line center."

Don't waste your time trying to figure it out. A favorite pastime of many Caps fans is obsessing over role players and fantasizing about them leading the team to greatness. The obsession with Perault is nothing compared to the way these same people were ready to set themselves on fire when Chris Bourque was sent back to Hershey last fall before the season started.

Posted by: LesGrossman | June 3, 2010 1:18 PM | Report abuse

@wizfan89

The reason for choosing MP is the Caps have limited salary cap room to fill in the holes. The thinking being is that you fill all the other holes (D, checking line center, checking line wing) and try out MP because he did show good promise last year. If MP does not play well through the first half of the season then you acquire a center near the deadline.

If the Caps were able to acquire a top 2nd line center while filling in those other holes I will be all for it.

@LesGrossman

MP is considered a much better prospect than Bourque ever was and did show promise last year in his stint in Washington.

Posted by: sgm3 | June 3, 2010 1:22 PM | Report abuse

I remember how good that deadline trade looked at the time, and who knows if Osala will ever be the kind of player his size suggests? But as others pointed out repeatedly, Corvo wasn't productive enough offensively nor tough enough defensively, and re-signing him wouldn't have made any financial sense. He didn't seem to do anything at D that Pothier could pretty much do as well.

It was too bad about that nasty punch-injury to Walker late in the season. I just didn't understand why BB didn't throw him in to try to shake the line up a bit before that final Game 7. I thought Walker's playoff experience was the whole reason GMGM got him.

If they don't resign Belanger (I hope they will if his asking price is modest enough), then that trade looks like a washout. I guess hindsight is 20/20 though.

Posted by: blackjack65 | June 3, 2010 1:26 PM | Report abuse

I know I may be hated for this but I think getting rid of Green would be a great help to our D. Although he had a good regular season he stunk it up in the playoffs and in my opinion is one of the main reasons we lost. He just didn't put in a norris trophy like effort. He wasn't skating hard at all and it seemed to spread to the rest of the team. Any thought on that.

Posted by: TheTruth26 | June 3, 2010 1:34 PM | Report abuse

@blackjack

All true. In addition, Osala was never going to get a chance for the Caps. Given the Caps NHL roster and prospects Osala was not going to make it up. He had slid behind a few other forwards in the rankings such as Andrew Gordon so I don't think he ever would've been given a shot. Who knows how he turns out with playing time in Carolina.

Posted by: sgm3 | June 3, 2010 1:34 PM | Report abuse

Erskine worries me with his concussion and although I like his attitude, Caps could use someone like him but faster.

Posted by: cirrus_nine | June 3, 2010 1:28 AM | Report abuse

I love Johnny E. and any fan of old-school hockey would, too.....I knew of his concussion problems at the end of the '08-'09 season, but didn't think they resurfaced this past year. I asked on this site all year if he were injured as the reason for his being scratched often, but all anyone said was he was scratched because he's too slow...I'd feel much better about BB if he was sitting Erskine for health reasons, does anyone know?

Posted by: vermontcaps | June 3, 2010 1:34 PM | Report abuse

Are you guys still obsessing about trading Semin? The guy is one of the most valuable members of this team. Look at the production of the other lines when SOB were together. It was nonexistent. BB had to use the "they're getting too cute" excuse to move Semin so we'd have more than one scoring line. Look at Laich's December slump. Oddly enough, it coincided with Semin being out. And this was during December when top guys sit out for minor injuries and AHL guys look like bonafide stars. Do you really think that a 2nd line of Laich-MP/Plekanc-Fehr would move us closer to the Cup?

And stop saying he's not a playoff producer because he didn't score against the Habs. Two of the big 3 had 1 goal each against the same team. And our big 2 only had 2 points in the last 3 games. How about we give the Habs some credit.

Posted by: ablake70 | June 3, 2010 1:50 PM | Report abuse

http://www.usatoday.com/sports/hockey/columnist/allen/2010-03-03-most-improved_N.htm


For some reason my post with the links are not being posted, they're being held so I'll try this another way. One at a time.

All the authors of the above articles have much more experience and access to hockey information than any of us claim to have. cstanton1, you always want players that are going to destroy opponents physically. You may not think that is what you portray here but it is. The Capitals have had the types of team you say they need now to win a Cup. Remember, it was called "Caps hockey." It was boring, and resulted in early exits from the playoffs. This team is right there, right on the verge of clicking in those final pieces. If you really are a long time fan, the Cup is coming, this team is more dominant than any other in our team's history. They need to get through these playoff growing pains.

Posted by: fanohock1 | June 3, 2010 1:50 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: fanohock1 | June 3, 2010 1:51 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: fanohock1 | June 3, 2010 1:52 PM | Report abuse

One last positive assessment. There are many more out there but I just wanted to provide a few samples. cstanton1 I don't treat any guy on TV as an expert. That would mean Keith Jones is an expert. There are many out there that have proven to be experts over time. They're not always right but reliable for sure.

Posted by: fanohock1 | June 3, 2010 1:56 PM | Report abuse

Yawn.....

Posted by: PhilR | June 3, 2010 1:58 PM | Report abuse

I wish my first one with all four would have just gone through. I forgot to provide the link to the last one, sorry.

http://nhl.fanhouse.com/2010/03/03/nhl-trade-deadline-winners-and-losers/

Posted by: fanohock1 | June 3, 2010 1:58 PM | Report abuse

Actually, if the Caps don't trade Semin for a guy like Staal, I'd just as soon they used MP as #2 center to save cap space (to sign Volch) so long as they use a #2 draft choice (they're all busts anyway, see post above) to get a guy like Koivu at the deadline.

Koivu wouldn't be a bad bridge to MJ at like two years, $3M per. You just can't fit Koivu and Volch ($8M total) by just trading Flash and Erskine.

The Caps, with all the current players, have about $1-1.5M in space (if cap stays same). Koivu+Volch-Ersk-Flash = $4M hit.

I'm having a really hard time trying to add a true #1 d-man, a true #2 center and a true (checking, we don't need three "scoring" lines) #3 RW w/o moving Semin and Flash.

I'm by no means an expert, but I'm having a hard time seeing the Caps playing SCF type hockey w/o those changes. We have a great team, 8th in NHL history to get 120+ pts (something Oilers never did), but it's not SCF hockey.

Posted by: tominsocal1 | June 3, 2010 2:03 PM | Report abuse

Slightly OT but related to my previous post about Kubina being a better choice then Volchenkov...

what if we got both... what do people think of this lineup.

2010-11 WASHINGTON CAPITALS
CAPGEEK.COM CAP CALCULATOR
FORWARDS
1-Alexander Ovechkin ($9.538m) / Nicklas Backstrom ($6.700m) / Mike Knuble ($2.800m)
2-Alexander Semin ($6.000m) / Mathieu Perreault ($0.717m) / * Eric Fehr ($1.875m)
3-Jason Chimera ($1.875m) / * Boyd Gordon ($0.838m) / Brooks Laich ($2.067m)
4-Matt Bradley ($1.000m) / Dave Steckel ($1.100m) / * Andrew Gordon ($0.667m)
healthy scratch * Chris Bourque ($0.635m)

DEFENSEMEN
Mike Green ($5.250m) / * Anton Volchenkov ($4.750m)
* Pavel Kubina ($4.750m) / * Jeff Schultz ($2.250m)
Karl Alzner ($1.675m) / John Carlson ($0.846m)
healthy scratches:
John Erskine ($1.250m) / Tyler Sloan ($0.700m)

GOALTENDERS
Simeon Varlamov ($0.822m) / Michal Neuvirth ($0.822m)

CAPGEEK.COM TOTALS
(these totals are compiled using the bonus cushion)
ROSTER: 23; CAP:$58.8m; PAYROLL: $58.926m; CAP ROOM: $0.724m BONUSES: $0.850m

Note: Flash, Poti and Erskine traded!

Posted by: FrankM73 | June 3, 2010 2:07 PM | Report abuse

j3rockstar:
yes the players failed, but the coaching staff cannot be excused. They had 3 games to win 1, and for the most part no major adjustments were made to offset the Canadiens shot blocking and defense. I don't want to hear the old "hot goaltender" excuse, BB has to shoulder some blame.

Posted by: kcbrichmond | June 3, 2010 2:13 PM | Report abuse

If the Caps want a dman, they should look into trading Schultz or Alzner. Neither is cheap enough to learn on the job for a team with Cup aspirations. Besides, the Caps have too many inexperienced defensemen.

Posted by: ablake70 | June 3, 2010 2:17 PM | Report abuse

@FrankM73

Not bad. Definitely a possible route to take.

I would remove Erskine to free up the extra $1.25M and just carry 7 defensemen.

I think paying Kubina $4.75 is way too much. I would rather keep Poti for one more year at $3.5M and let his contract run out after next year. Poti was very good in the playoffs this year. That would save anothe $1.25M. I'm not too high on Kubina either. Personally I think he is overrated. I would rather have Paul Martin than Kubina.

With the extra money I would rather spend an extra $800k and have Belanger be the third line center than Gordon.

Lastly, I don't think you could put Fehr and Semin on the same line as both are RWs. The same with Laich and Chimera since they are both LWs. Unless some of those players are comfortable switching sides.

Posted by: sgm3 | June 3, 2010 2:19 PM | Report abuse

FrankM73,

No thanks on having Gordon and Steckel as the 3rd and 4th line centers....that would not work in my eyes especially with MP as the 2nd line center......plus that leaves zero cap room for trade deadline moves to improve the center position.

Posted by: PhilR | June 3, 2010 2:19 PM | Report abuse

Frank: First, you have increased the cap by $2M. That is speculation at this point.

Second, you've gone over by Alzner's bonus which would then mean a cap reduction the following year.

Third, no room for a deadline acquisition.

Fourth, I'm not sure Poti is easy to move.

Posted by: tominsocal1 | June 3, 2010 2:25 PM | Report abuse

@tominsocal1

Bettman said he expects the cap to increase by about $2M so it is a pretty safe assumption to make now.

Posted by: sgm3 | June 3, 2010 2:31 PM | Report abuse

Since being bounced from the playoffs just about every Cap has been dealt at least once by fans.

Even Ovechkin has been thrown under the bus because his 50 goals, 109 pts, +45, and most PPG in his career shows he's not a two-player and is on the decline (not said today, but has been said in here).

The only players not mentioned in some form of a trade, or release, that I can recall are Backstrom, Knuble, and Carlson (the second coming of the Lord in some eyes). I know they lost in the first friggin' round but come on. If someone was to read this board and not know what went on last hockey season they would believe this team finished dead last in the league. Why else would fans want basically a full purge from GM to coach to nucleus of players?

Posted by: fanohock1 | June 3, 2010 2:33 PM | Report abuse

kcbrichmond,
No, you're right....BB should share the blame...the whole coaching staff should for not adjusting. But everyone looking for heads to roll for two years of game 7 debacles really needs to point the finger at the players first. That was my point.

Posted by: j3rockstar | June 3, 2010 2:44 PM | Report abuse

I'd say BB is on the way hot seat...Conference Finals or he loses a job.

Posted by: lylewimbledon | June 3, 2010 2:46 PM | Report abuse

@ j3rockstar

It wasn't the players that kept trying to force Flash into the lineup when their wasn't a spot for him. It wasn't the players that kept putting Flash in the 2C spot when BMo would have been a better option. It wasn't the players that kept playing Green 25+ minutes a game for the second year in a row even though he was struggling. BB deserves a lot more heat than he is getting.

Posted by: ablake70 | June 3, 2010 2:54 PM | Report abuse

@sgm:

how about this? lines a little adjusted and you can make Kubina into Volchenkov if it suits your fancy :-)

2010-11 WASHINGTON CAPITALS
CAPGEEK.COM CAP CALCULATOR
FORWARDS
1-Alexander Ovechkin ($9.538m) / Nicklas Backstrom ($6.700m) / Mike Knuble ($2.800m)
2-Brooks Laich ($2.067m) / Mathieu Perreault ($0.717m) / Alexander Semin ($6.000m)
3-Jason Chimera ($1.875m) / * Eric Belanger ($1.875m) / * Eric Fehr ($1.875m)
4-Matt Bradley ($1.000m) / * Boyd Gordon ($0.838m) / * Andrew Gordon ($0.667m)
Scratches: Dave Steckel ($1.100m) / * Chris Bourque ($0.635m)

DEFENSEMEN
1-Mike Green ($5.250m) / * Pavel Kubina ($4.250m)
2-Tom Poti ($3.500m) / * Jeff Schultz ($2.250m)
3-Karl Alzner ($1.675m) / John Carlson ($0.846m)
Scratches: Tyler Sloan ($0.700m)

GOALTENDERS
Simeon Varlamov ($0.822m) / Michal Neuvirth ($0.822m)

CAPGEEK.COM TOTALS
(no bonus cushion is used in these calculations)
ROSTER: 23
CAP: $58.8m
PAYROLL: $57.801m
CAP ROOM: $0.999m

Posted by: FrankM73 | June 3, 2010 2:55 PM | Report abuse

ablake70,
Perhaps it was Flash's fault for not playing to his potential? Or, perhaps Green has a problem thinking that he can turn it off and on whenever he sees fit? No??

Posted by: j3rockstar | June 3, 2010 3:12 PM | Report abuse

I'd rather have Patrick Marleau at second line center and go with what we go on D. I think you go with the youth and one high priced piece like Marleau (short-term deal to avoid a cap catastrophe). Take AV's 4.25 and Belanger's 1.85 and you have the room to sign Marleau. Then you'd have one year to evaluate Semin with a legitimate center. If Semin proves himself, and Marcus Johannson is ready in 2 years, you let Marleau walk. If Semin isn't up to the task, you keep Marleau and switch him back to wing if MJ is ready and have depth at center.

Ovechkin-Backstrom-Knuble
Laich-Marleau-Semin


That is a scary looking top 6 and much better defensively.

Posted by: brian58 | June 3, 2010 3:16 PM | Report abuse

@FrankM73

I could live with that(I would take Volchenkov over Kubina though).

I would make one, maybe two, more tweeks.

I would drop Steckel and B. Gordon ($1.938M total using your numbers) and replace them with John Madden as 4th line center(If he can be had for around $1.5 to $2.0 for a 1 year contract). I would have the Caps carry only 13 forwards, 7 D, and 2 G. Teams do not have to have 23 players on the NHL roster.

And, if at all possible, if the Caps were able to trade Flash for Clutterbuck I would have Clutterbuck as the 4th line winger with Madden and Bradley with A. Gordon being the 13th forward and Bourque being in Hershey.

Posted by: sgm3 | June 3, 2010 3:21 PM | Report abuse

"@dccitizen1

GMGM basically handled it with as much class as you can. He obviously did not want to re-sign them because he didn't get the results he was hoping for, but he said it in a way that was complimentary to the players.

It would serve no good to anyone to go out right now and criticize the players in any way. It would have only been childish and selfish of GMGM if he did that, but he didn't.

This is called managing with class and treating others with dignity. It would be nice if more people in this world acted like GMGM.

Posted by: sgm3 | June 3, 2010 12:01 PM"

I totally agree, sgm3. I actually met GMGM one time, and he was extremely polite and gracious.

There are ways for people to make their points without being childish. Most people on this blog do that, but there are some notable exceptions.

Posted by: dccitizen1 | June 3, 2010 3:30 PM | Report abuse

Perhaps it was Flash's fault for not playing to his potential? Or, perhaps Green has a problem thinking that he can turn it off and on whenever he sees fit? No??

Posted by: j3rockstar

If you moved Ovi to goalie, would you say that he's not playing up to his potential if he allowed 4 goals on 5 shots? Flash is a winger. That is his potential. BB forced him into the center role, for some unknown reason. Is it Flash's fault that he couldn't play center?

It doesn't matter if Ovi scores every goal or Q, the purpose of the playoffs is to win. A coach has to make the necessary changes despite the hype or his personal feelings. If Flash is not working in the lineup, you have to bench him. If Green/Schultz is on the ice for 7 of 8 goals against, you have to cut their minutes.

Posted by: ablake70 | June 3, 2010 3:47 PM | Report abuse

OK, here is the current roster with some salaries guessed at and with cap increased to 58.8M.

No, I'm not including Nylander.

Ovechkin (2008-2021) 9.538
Backstrom (2010-2020) 6.700
Semin (impending UFA) 6.000
Flash (signs 2010-2013) 3.000
Knuble (impending UFA) 2.800
Laich (impending UFA) 2.067
Fehr (signs 2010-2012) 2.000
Chimera (2009-2012) 1.875
Steckel (2010-2013) 1.100
Bradley (impending UFA) 1.000
Gordon (impending UFA) 0.900
Perreault (w/bonus; impending RFA) 0.792
Laing (re-signs yearly) 0.550
S/T 13 Forwards 38.322
Green (2008-2012) 5.250
Poti (impending UFA) 3.500
Schultz (signs 2010-2012) 2.250
Alzner (w/bonus; impending RFA) 1.675
Erskine (impending UFA) 1.250
Carlson (EL 2009-2012) 0.846
Sloan (2010-2012) 0.700
S/T 7 Defensemen 15.471
Varlamov (impending RFA) 0.822
Neuvirth (impending RFA) 0.822
S/T 2 Goalies 1.644
Total 23 Players 55.437
Cap Space (Estimated) 58.800
Available 3.363

Posted by: tominsocal1 | June 3, 2010 3:53 PM | Report abuse

ablake70,
You're not asking Flash to play a position that he's not comfortable with. He's played Center before....a lot actually. BTW, he wasn't very impressive as a "natural" wing in the Playoffs anyways. I think BB used the personel that he had the best shot with. Other than not putting Theo in at all to help with an obvious tired Varly, I don't think he did a horrible job.

Posted by: j3rockstar | June 3, 2010 4:03 PM | Report abuse

@tominsocal1

So getting rid of Flash and Erskine would free up $4.25 leaving $7.613.

Then getting rid of B. Gordon or Steckel (I don't think there is roster room for both) frees up $1.0M(average of the two for ease of use purposes).

That leaves $8.613 to acquire a defenseman, center, and forward.

If the Caps can get Volchenkov for $4.75(hopefully it won't be $5 but it may be) leaves $3.937 for the center and wing. If Clutterbuck can be acquired for Flash (that is about $1M for wing)then it leaves $2.937 for the center.

Maybe then they go after John Madden as a checking center or possibly Lombardi as a 2nd line center.

Posted by: sgm3 | June 3, 2010 4:05 PM | Report abuse

In addition with that $2.913 for a center the Caps could drop both Stecekl and Boyd Gordon (an extra $1M) which would leave them $3.913 for 2 centers and maybe they could get Belanger ($1.75) and Madden with that money for 3rd and 4th line centers.

This would leave MP playing 2nd line center.

Posted by: sgm3 | June 3, 2010 4:07 PM | Report abuse

I totally agree, sgm3. I actually met GMGM one time, and he was extremely polite and gracious.

There are ways for people to make their points without being childish. Most people on this blog do that, but there are some notable exceptions.

Posted by: dccitizen1 | June 3, 2010 3:30 PM | Report abuse

gosh i know! its so annoying when fans don't kiss mcphee's butt because he's so polite and gracious and that should be enough to look past his incompetences. GM thanks his lucky stars every day that he has a fanbase that swallows crap whole.

Posted by: cstanton1 | June 3, 2010 4:12 PM | Report abuse

Another positive assessment.

http://sports.espn.go.com/nhl/news/story?id=4963359

Posted by: fanohock1 | June 3, 2010 1:51 PM | Report abuse

its called regurgitation. They look to the so-called hockey experts (like you did) and then regurgitate what they say. Everyone just copies everyone else for the most part. The Caps had the best record in the league, so everyone jumped on McPhee's bandwagon. Those of us who see the Caps on a daily basis over several yrs know better. The guys you look to to validate McPhee, aren't usually right about anything. They cover all the teams in very general terms. I'll take the opinion of a diehard fan who lives and breathes his team over that of a so-called expert analyst. And from the get-go, McPhee's moves were clearly ineffective. I didn't need any "web links" to tell me otherwise. Maybe you did.

Posted by: cstanton1 | June 3, 2010 4:17 PM | Report abuse

I know I may be hated for this but I think getting rid of Green would be a great help to our D. Although he had a good regular season he stunk it up in the playoffs and in my opinion is one of the main reasons we lost. He just didn't put in a norris trophy like effort. He wasn't skating hard at all and it seemed to spread to the rest of the team. Any thought on that.

Posted by: TheTruth26 | June 3, 2010 1:34 PM | Report abuse

of the 3 playoff series Green has played so far, his effort in this past playoff season was his best. You can talk about anything else like mental mistakes etc, but his effort on the ice (displayed in hustle and physicality) was better than last yr and better than v the Flyers. And its not surprising considering that it wasn't until halfway thru this past season that he had his epiphany after being (rightfully) dissed by Yzerman.

I wouldn't look into trading Green, I think he could easily be part of the overall solution. Any trade should always be looked at of course but I wouldn't trade him. I think he needs better help around him, and he needs better coaching.

Posted by: cstanton1 | June 3, 2010 4:21 PM | Report abuse

cstanton1 quote from earlier "Tell that to guys like Jeff Carter who has certainly raised his game in the corners."

Two seperate quotes from Pierre Lebrun about the series from an hour ago:

"I think he's [Richards] playing better than his linemates, Jeff Carter and Simon Gagne, who have both really struggled."

"Yeah Carter has not been effective at all."

Posted by: sgm3 | June 3, 2010 4:26 PM | Report abuse

cstanton:

i think the bigger issue for Caps defense, aside from personnel, is the coaching. i am not sure that Woods brought much different when it comes to defensive schemes. Boudreau doesn't know what the word defense means. how about letting Evason go, moving Woods to that slot and bringing in an asst coach that actually knows soemthing about D??

Posted by: doughless | June 3, 2010 11:12 AM | Report abuse

Bob Woods has been unimpressive to me. I'm a bigger fan of the current coach of the Bears, Mark French who seems to understand what style of hockey his teams need to play. I think the major credit for success the Bears had should go to their GM though - Doug Yingst.

But no matter WHO the asst coach is, it doesn't matter because he has to answer to Bruce's vision (and the GM's of course). You think a coach like Tim Hunter liked to be affiliated with teams who got pushed around on the ice? Thats how it was here under Ron Wilson in Capsland and to an extent in San Jose. Now he's got a big smile on his face in Toronto because that team has Brian Burke's imprint. In the same manner, you're not going to simply bring on an asst coach to the Caps who adds the elements you are looking for. The overall personality and style permeates from head coach and GM down thru the rest of the team. The asst coaches can deal with some x's and o's but they're really carrying out what the head coach wants. And what BB largely wants, is high flying offensive hockey, everything else be damned.

Posted by: cstanton1 | June 3, 2010 4:30 PM | Report abuse

j3rockstar wrote You're not asking Flash to play a position that he's not comfortable with

When did Flash play center? Not in Hershey. Not for the first full 2 1/2 years he was here. And how can you expect a player that is not a good defensive winger to turn into a center. Flash is a scorer with that can skate and make passes with time. Nothing in that description screams center.

BB played with the personnel he wanted. These are the guys he gushes about to the media, telling everyone that they are elite and should be Olympians. Do you really think he didn't want to play them? Odd that it was only after GMGM complained of another f'ing game 7 that Alzner and Walker were in, while Flash and Sloan were out.

Posted by: ablake70 | June 3, 2010 4:34 PM | Report abuse

Two seperate quotes from Pierre Lebrun about the series from an hour ago:

"I think he's [Richards] playing better than his linemates, Jeff Carter and Simon Gagne, who have both really struggled."

"Yeah Carter has not been effective at all."

Posted by: sgm3 | June 3, 2010 4:26 PM | Report abuse

instead of pulling someone else's opinion, try stating yours. A mind is a terrible thing to waste.

Posted by: cstanton1 | June 3, 2010 4:39 PM | Report abuse

I agree Green has gotten better the last few years. Perhaps I was to quick to single him out. Maybe he was playing hurt and was given way too many minutes per game. Taking a minute to look back I now realize it was a whole team effort, except Knuble, that was lacking. He was the only one that seemed be playing with extra intensity every game. If you compare the Hawks/Flyers games to the Caps games you'll notice an obvious difference in speed. The Hawks and Flyer players go all out and don't worry about making mistakes. The Caps do to much thinking before making plays. That works and makes for pretty plays in the regular season but there is no time to be cute in the playoffs. Let's hope they learn from this year and go farther in the next.

Posted by: TheTruth26 | June 3, 2010 4:40 PM | Report abuse

the point of the Jeff Carter comparision (which SGM missed of course) was to counter the person who stated that Semin didn't need to grind at all. Which is completely bogus. You do what you have to to win. If a certain play requires Semin to go and grind in the corner for a puck, then thats what he HAS to do. This notion that skilled players should ALWAYS play a finesse style was propagated by morons. Detroit has quite a few skill players who know exactly when to turn into grinders on the ice. Semin is unwilling to pay the price to be a well-rounded player.

Posted by: cstanton1 | June 3, 2010 4:43 PM | Report abuse

cstanton1

All I did was post a few quotes for others to read and make their own conclusions.

So the only question to ask is, were the quotes I posted accurate?

If they were(which they are) then I will leave it up to others to make of it whatever they want. I like hearing other people's opinions on factual information. I'm not on here to try to tell others what their opinions should be.

Posted by: sgm3 | June 3, 2010 4:49 PM | Report abuse

ablake70,
I believe he did play Center in Hershey....not full time, but he has.
You seem to forget when the great idea for him to play center this season began....about the time the trade deadline was coming up. I'm sure it was brought to him like this.....try to fill the Center position that is opened now, or we may have to find another team for you.
You're making it seem like he was putting up "Alex Squared" type numbers before they ripped him out of that situation and MADE him play Center. They found a job for him on this team that they believed he could be effective at......maybe they were wrong. But he seemed like the best guy at the time to do it. Laich tried and it didn't work like that had hoped. You seem to think that I believe that this coaching staff is mistake and blame free, and you're certainly missing my point...and that is that when it was time to put away a team that they had to, they couldn't. They were outplayed. When they were averaging THAT many shots a game, it's hard to blame the coach for that!

Posted by: j3rockstar | June 3, 2010 4:59 PM | Report abuse

BTW....this is coming out like I have dislike for these players. I don't. I love this roster. I just think the blame should start with them.

Posted by: j3rockstar | June 3, 2010 5:02 PM | Report abuse

That works and makes for pretty plays in the regular season but there is no time to be cute in the playoffs.
-----------------------

its a broken record around these parts but that is the truth, 26.

however, when you have cute players and a cute coach led by a really cute GM, can you expect anything BUT cute on the ice?

Posted by: cstanton1 | June 3, 2010 5:04 PM | Report abuse

"gosh i know! its so annoying when fans don't kiss mcphee's butt because he's so polite and gracious and that should be enough to look past his incompetences. GM thanks his lucky stars every day that he has a fanbase that swallows crap whole.

Posted by: cstanton1 "

Who said you have to kiss anyone's butt? I'm just saying that McPhee is a nice person, and I happen to think he's done great things for the Capitals. You don't. Okay, big deal. But you imply that I'm swallowing crap whole? No, I'm not. Now, if I believed every single piece of writing that you spew onto this blog, then that would be true. But I don't. Excuse me for DARING to disagree with you, cstanton1. I actually like to read your posts some times because I do think you have some good/interesting things to say. It's when your invective level rises and you denigrate people for disagreeing with you and when you spew such hatred for GM et al that you lose my respect.

Posted by: dccitizen1 | June 3, 2010 5:04 PM | Report abuse

gaaaaaaaaaaarghhhhh

Posted by: cstanton1 | June 3, 2010 5:10 PM | Report abuse

cstanton1

All I did was post a few quotes for others to read and make their own conclusions.

So the only question to ask is, were the quotes I posted accurate?

--------------------------

I don't know, did you quote him correctly?

if you're asking was his assessment accurate, then I would say it depends on what he meant by "jeff carter is struggling". Does it mean he's not scoring points? does it mean he's not being effective in any capacity?

The reason I even mentioned Carter was to show that a player like him who despite his size plays a pretty finesse style, is willing to add a physical nature to his game in the playoffs. I don't see that from players like Flash and Semin.

Posted by: cstanton1 | June 3, 2010 5:14 PM | Report abuse

@cstanton1

I copied and pasted the quotes. They are in his chat wrap on the espn webpage.

Posted by: sgm3 | June 3, 2010 5:17 PM | Report abuse

@ j3rockstar |

I do remember that the Flash to center move came around the Clark trade. Do you remember BB gushing that he'd always thought of Flash as a center? Don't you think a better coach would have been more objective for the good of the team? He wanted Flash on this team and did whatever he could to keep him here.

I'm not absolving the players completely of blame. My issue with BB is that he always blames someone else. The team may have had 45+ shots on goal, but probably only 20 of the were quality shots. Lots of bad shots from everyone and no clear strategy. Even Backstrom was just throwing shots on net from the blueline with no other Caps in the zone. You don't think coach is partly to blame for that? BB's answer for everything is to shuffle the lines and play Ovi-Backs-37 year old Knuble every other shift in the 3rd period of game 7.

Posted by: ablake70 | June 3, 2010 5:19 PM | Report abuse

@ablake70
I believe you and I are closer to being on the same page than you imagine. Yes. I agree that BB is partially to blame, how could he not be??
I also agree that he has his favorite players and he does everything in his power to make sure they see ice time (even though some may not deserve said ice time). Flash, Green, Laing, and Schultz come to mind.
You said...."The team may have had 45+ shots on goal, but probably only 20 of the were quality shots"...
Now, do you think that is because of bad preperation (that BB could be held accountable for)...or is it players freaking out, and playing away from the drawn out system?? Probably a combo of both, really. But I feel if as a team, you're only getting 50% of your shots on net as quality attempts, then that's on YOU (the shooter), and you alone.

BTW....it's been great debating with you. You bring great opinions to the table, with facts to back up your statements.

Posted by: j3rockstar | June 3, 2010 5:34 PM | Report abuse

@cstanton1

I copied and pasted the quotes. They are in his chat wrap on the espn webpage.
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i don't really care, i was just being facetious. It doesn't matter what Pierre LeBrun says. If he thinks Jeff Carter is "struggling" that has nothing to do with my statement about Carter. My statement strictly had to do with the way Carter has stepped up his game in the corners to provide an example of a player who doesn't usually play that changing his style to fit playoff hockey. Why you posted Lebrun's comments in reference or rebuttal to that I don't know.

Posted by: cstanton1 | June 3, 2010 5:45 PM | Report abuse

face it, Semin is a light weight and a head case. he cant decide if he is coming or going, given a different day. if Ovie wants to spend his time worrying about a chump like Semin, then Ted and GMGM have problems. The guy is not worth the money he is going to want for a new contract. he will ask for at least $7 million a year. the Caps can fill a major hole or 2 for that kind of money. do you donkeys want a cup or keep the young guns in tack?? Semin has had plenty of time to show his stuff. i think it is time for him to ride out of town into the sunset.

Posted by: doughless | June 3, 2010 5:51 PM | Report abuse

@ j3rockstar

I agree the players deserve blame. Ovi, Semin, and Green have already admitted their failings. I would feel better about next season if BB did the same.

It has been great debating with you too. It's always a plus to find civil people on this board.

Posted by: ablake70 | June 3, 2010 5:54 PM | Report abuse

Anyone in their right minds could see how ill-suited Flash was to play center. Bruce's stubbornness to keep trying to fit a square peg in a round hole is reflective of the larger issue. His ego knows no bounds. Umberger's comments about the Caps not playing hockey "the right way" should've been a wakeup call to Bruce. Instead he responded in a smug manner. He's going to do it his way and we all suffer for it. A good coach adjusts his gameplan when necessary. Bruce's adjustments are either ineffective or non-existent.

Posted by: cstanton1 | June 3, 2010 6:03 PM | Report abuse

@cstanton1

If Carter "stepped up his game in the corners" like you have stated then I highly doubt people would be saying he is "struggling" and has "not been effective at all".

I think it is pretty safe to say that people strongly disagree with your statement that Carter has stepped up his game in the corners.

I am using this as an example to show you make random statements about players, that are not supported by facts, to try to fit your initial argument(Semin needs to play tougher, which may actually be an accurate statement)

Posted by: sgm3 | June 3, 2010 7:02 PM | Report abuse

ok, believe what you want to believe. I can only state my case in so many different ways.

Anyway, Bears lose game 1 of the AHL finals tonight. I watched about half of it. Alzner played a pukey game on D. AGordon skated well and had about a half dozen good hits but he still looks like he's hurt, he was getting either winded or sore at the end of his shifts. He missed most of the last series. Here are some highlights

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EsI4HM0F0wY

Posted by: cstanton1 | June 3, 2010 11:18 PM | Report abuse

btw sgm, just to put a capper on it, when those hockey "experts" make comments about goal scorers "struggling", they're usually referring to lack of point production. That's about it. Simplistic analyses is what you should expect from the Pierre LeBruns and McGuires of this world. Doesn't change the fact that a player like Carter has stepped outside his comfort zone to display much more tenacity on the ice.

Posted by: cstanton1 | June 3, 2010 11:20 PM | Report abuse

It's too bad about Walker. He was traded here and because GMGM provided Boudreau with such a glut of people, Scottie never really got a chance to prove himself. Best of luck, good sir.

Posted by: j762 | June 4, 2010 7:07 PM | Report abuse

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