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Mike Knuble: 'I'm extremely frustrated'

Mike Knuble(Toni L. Sandys/The Washington Post)


In his 12 previous NHL seasons (of 50 games or more), Mike Knuble has never experienced a scoring slump quite like the one that he's started the beginning of the 2010-11 campaign with.

Despite a plethora of quality scoring chances from his usual wheelhouse close in around the opposing net, Knuble has just one goal and four points in 11 games this season. His shooting percentage is at 3.1 percent after not dipping below 15 percent since the 2003-04 or below 10 percent since 2000-01.

"I'll be honest, I'm extremely frustrated with my start to the season. I'm very, very disappointed," Knuble said. "You come in here your second year and if it was this point last year, people would be asking: 'What the hell did we sign this guy for?' I guess I've proven I can do it. It's just a question of doing it.

"It's what you think of when you're driving home when you're alone in the car; your mind drifts off to it," he said. "As soon as you wake up in the morning I'm thinking about it."

While Knuble's lack of additions to the scoresheet has become conspicuous through the first month of the season, Coach Bruce Boudreau insists he is not worried about the 38-year-old veteran right wing finding his scoring moxie again.

The media "want to make it a point but it's not a concern," Boudreau said. "He works so hard, he's getting chances every game to score and as long as he continues to get chances, he's going to eventually put them in."

Probably more than most members of the Capitals to this point in the season, Knuble has watched goaltenders make improbable saves on his redirections from on top of the crease, or the puck bounce just the right way to hit the handle of a goalie's stick and avoid the cage. No one questions that Knuble will find a way to put the puck in the net, but for the time being it will be interesting to see how he fares on a different line than Alex Ovechkin and Nicklas Backstrom, with whom he's skated for the majority of his time in Washington.

While grouped with Brooks Laich and Tomas Fleischmann, who are both looking to get on the scoresheet a little more themselves, Knuble knows he must keep track of his positioning options rather than simply making a beeline for the goalmouth.

"Brooks and I kind of do the same thing. We're in the same area at times and so we might bump into each other around the net, but we just have to be aware of that," Knuble said. "With Nick and Alex I'd pretty much going down there and not worry about bumping into them too much. Now, you look around a little bit and you're actually spreading out a little. Whether [the line change ] is short term or long term, I've got my own problems to work through. You don't deserve to be on the first line when you've got your own problems to work through."

By Katie Carrera  | November 2, 2010; 3:04 PM ET
Categories:  Mike Knuble  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Michal Neuvirth named NHL's rookie of the month
Next: Boudreau ready to see how far Ovechkin-Backstrom-Semin combo can go

Comments

This dude's pretty much pure class.

Posted by: stevie_in_gp | November 2, 2010 3:24 PM | Report abuse

PRIMVS!

Not to worry: Knubes will find a way.

Posted by: Rhino40 | November 2, 2010 3:25 PM | Report abuse

Knuble will get it going. You always knew he was like this - ain't no one's fault but his own game and whatnot. Mike don't cry about anything.

No worries, we'll get about 20 from him this year.

Posted by: saintex | November 2, 2010 3:37 PM | Report abuse

He may not be scoring (and he will get that going soon) he has been awesom on the PK!

Posted by: capscoach | November 2, 2010 4:08 PM | Report abuse

Just to get the discussion heated up, a modest proposal/query:

There is no one on this team that brings as much to the table - judging by contributions across every facet of the game - as Mike Knuble.

Posted by: stevie_in_gp | November 2, 2010 4:25 PM | Report abuse

(That was terrible grammar/phrasing, but I suspect y'all will get what I'm aiming at. And if you don't, any discussion will be even more heated!)

Posted by: stevie_in_gp | November 2, 2010 4:27 PM | Report abuse

"There is no one on this team that brings as much to the table" - stevie_in_gp

Not true, I read somewhere that BB makes Tyler Sloan serve them their team dinners every night before the games...to earn his salary. 22 guys being served dinner...thats bringing a lot of plates to the table. :P

Posted by: SeminAllOverTheIce | November 2, 2010 4:30 PM | Report abuse

Say a couple things about Knuble. He has a great work ethic. He is all heart and is a great leader. Good hockey player and when his career winds down in few years I hope that Caps try to retain him in some capacity. I still think he has at least two more years.

Posted by: pkme | November 2, 2010 4:42 PM | Report abuse

saoti,

And Boyd supplies the muffins.

Posted by: Steve_R | November 2, 2010 4:42 PM | Report abuse

@Steve_R

Well he was, but threw out his back carrying the bread basket. Figures.

Posted by: SeminAllOverTheIce | November 2, 2010 4:52 PM | Report abuse

Wilbon should be happy. He's got another black QB to write about if we sign Jamarcus. I wonder if he thought JR got stiffed in Oakland.

Posted by: cstanton1 | November 2, 2010 1:48 PM |

A cstanton1 sighting on RI. Come back to your other home, CI, cstanton. The Redskins are a hot mess.

Posted by: nicety251 | November 2, 2010 4:55 PM | Report abuse

Sloan it is!

(Damn you, sports/culinary cliches . . .)

Posted by: stevie_in_gp | November 2, 2010 4:55 PM | Report abuse

Ditto on Knuble, he has a tremendous work ethic and I wish ALL of the Caps had the same dedication he displays. His goals will surely come.

Posted by: MReilly9 | November 2, 2010 6:06 PM | Report abuse

Anyone at the convention would have to appreciate Knuble. He stuck around longer and signed more autographs than any other and seemed generally happy to do so. My mother-in-law had a golden ticket and had bought a Knuble jersey for him to sign for her grandson. She also had a team pic that she was getting signed by everyone. As she approached the table the Caps traffic cop reminded her "one signature only" and Mike chimes in with "Gimme that too, I'll sign both". After the official signing he sat on the edge of the platform and signed for people for probably another 20 minutes while the attendant person tried to hustle him away. Great guy and a great player.

Posted by: psujohn | November 2, 2010 8:13 PM | Report abuse

Nubie is my brother in law . He is a great guy .And my sis says Mike hasn't had a problem of finding the net at home .

Posted by: terryreece | November 3, 2010 9:01 AM | Report abuse

Whats up with the whining and pansy attitude - I prefer players who complain less and show it more on the ice. none the less - I still like him a lot.

Posted by: krismeister | November 3, 2010 10:03 AM | Report abuse

Whats up with the whining and pansy attitude - I prefer players who complain less and show it more on the ice. none the less - I still like him a lot.

Posted by: krismeister

-----

This is a prime example of why I stopped reading the comments here over a year ago. Thanks for the reminder.

Posted by: JillC | November 3, 2010 1:18 PM | Report abuse

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