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Morning Links: Hockey's Back, for Real


Enthusiasm! (By John McDonnell - The Washington Post)


It's here! The NHL kicks off the games-that-count part of the season tonight, and you won't have to wait long to watch the Caps (unless you have DirecTV... What, too soon?).

Tonight's action begins on Versus at 7 p.m. as the Caps take on the Bruins in Boston.

Need a way to pass the time? Then sit at your computer and stare at our nifty faceoff countdown. ... Or, check out some of these links:


* Mike Knuble may think he's just a piece of the puzzle rather than the piece of the puzzle, but his net presence and leadership make the Caps a complete -- and dangerous -- team.

* Agent Steinz tries to figure out just how much the Caps like playing hockey.

* And here's the video. They really do like hockey.

* Alex Ovechkin, Semyon Varlamov and Ted Leonsis look important while doing important things. (Alex Ovetjkin)

* Caps begin the Cup quest (D.C. Examiner)

* Rick Snider: Capital appreciation (D.C. Examiner)

* Boudreau thinks Ovechkin's best is yet to come. Actually, he said, "there's a lot of room for improvement in his game," which, while probably true, doesn't sound quite as complimentary.

* NHL's Caps-Bruins preview.

* Versus analysts talk about the Caps. (In the Room)

* ESPN's top headline on its NHL page: "The 'Prove It' Group: Players to watch? We've got a few. Get familiar with these names that aren't Ovechkin or Crosby." Boooooooring. (Here it is anyway.)

* Our preview section, in case you missed it yesterday. (Ha. Ha.)

* Are the Caps Cup-worthy? (SI.com)

* Varlamov is a "Kid to Watch." (SI.com)

Stay tuned for some morning skate updates from Tarik in Boston.

By Lindsay Applebaum  |  October 1, 2009; 5:38 AM ET
 
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Bourque: 'I'm Excited and Sad'
Next: Tonight's Lineup: Caps at Bruins

Comments

LET'S GO CAPS!!!

Posted by: ludeman95 | October 1, 2009 5:59 AM | Report abuse

Man, I have to say one last thing about Bourque. Someone at the end of the last thread said that Bourque was good enough to be a top 6 forward for the Pens. Where the heck did he/she get that info. Bourque is filling a need for the Penguins organization. At best a 3rd or 4th liner that gets into games on occasion, but more than likely a WBS upgrade.

Posted by: fanohock1 | October 1, 2009 6:26 AM | Report abuse

go caps..woo..yay. whatever

Posted by: capsfan387 | October 1, 2009 6:31 AM | Report abuse

I'm all set. The Caps flag is hanging for the house below Old Glory, there's a little chill in the air. Yeah...it must be opening day in the NHL. Let's go Caps!!! Survive the firestorm that will undoubtedly happen due the excitement of the home opener for the Bruins. Keep this a tie or 1-goal game after 20 and they'll come home with some points.

Posted by: fanohock1 | October 1, 2009 6:40 AM | Report abuse

SEASON predictions?

120 points. Bam. GO CAPS

Posted by: gocaps99 | October 1, 2009 7:09 AM | Report abuse

Gotta get some production out of that $4.875 million of cap space.

Posted by: tmac2yao | October 1, 2009 7:20 AM | Report abuse

$4.875 million represents nearly 10% of our cap space (8.6% to be more precise).

In this salary cap era, you need to maximize your resources.

It will tough to overcome getting nothing out of that 10%. We did well last season despite the same problem but that doesn't mean it's not hurting us.

Posted by: tmac2yao | October 1, 2009 7:23 AM | Report abuse

I will be happy with 105pts or so. That would mean a secure spot in the playoffs without having to panic at the end of the regular season.

Like most Caps fans my concern and focus will be on the post season. This is a pretty solid team that needs to solidify the goaltending situation as the season progresses. Additionally it's no secret that the Caps need to find out exactly where the holes on defense are (unless Woods fixes them) as the March deadline approaches so they can be filled properly for a deep playoff run. Given our salary cap issues that would mean trades will have to be completed rather than flat out acquisitions, but it can be done.

Here's to 41 regular season parties at home, and 41 at Verizon.

Posted by: fanohock1 | October 1, 2009 7:32 AM | Report abuse

Last year was 108 pts. This year 110-112.

Here is cap space as I have it. Only works with Flash and Fehr on LTIR. I believe they are keeping 8 d as a move is coming. Also, I don't think Aucoin can come back w/o reverse waivers as he has an NHL deal.

Ovechkin 9.538
Nylander 4.875
Semin 4.600
Knuble 2.800
Clark 2.633
Backstrom 2.400
Laich 2.067
Morrison 1.500
Bradley 1.000
Fehr (LTIR) 0.772
Gordon 0.761
Flash (LTIR) 0.725
Steckel 0.725
Kane 0.500
Laing 0.500
S/T 15 Forwards 35.396
Green 5.250
Poti 3.500
Pothier 2.500
Morrisonn 1.975
Jurcina 1.375
Erskine 1.250
Schultz 0.715
Sloan 0.640
S/T 8 Defensemen 17.205
Theodore 4.500
Varlamov 0.822
S/T 2 Goalies 5.322
Total 23 Players 57.923
Clymer (Buyout) 0.367
Total 23 Players + Clymer 58.290
Cap Space (Est) 56.800
Available -1.490
LTIR Replacement 1.497
Space w/LTIR Replacement 0.007

Posted by: tominfl1 | October 1, 2009 7:35 AM | Report abuse

DID YOU SEE THE TIMES? They have a front page report in the Sports Section with a huge photo spread titled "SAME FACES, SAME GOAL".

Only one problem - they have a picture of Brooks Laich and it is labeled Chris Clark.

Geeze, what a bunch of boobs.

Posted by: WhyGo | October 1, 2009 7:54 AM | Report abuse

Let's Go Caps! Another season of hope and promise begins... 1974 to 2009, maybe this is the year! Go Caps!

Posted by: kcbrichmond | October 1, 2009 8:03 AM | Report abuse

Good morning and Merry Christmas to all.

@WhyGo:

To be fair- if there are two players on the team that resemble each other- it's definitely those two.

That said- still not an excuse to mix it up.

Speaking of mixing it up- I'd love to see Pothier put Lucic through the glass.

Posted by: Fro_ | October 1, 2009 8:04 AM | Report abuse

Where is Katie the Penguin Lover???? Cant believe she's a Pens fan and was posting Caps stuff.. WP that is sac-religious!!!

Go Caps!!!

Posted by: darrylrbaker | October 1, 2009 8:04 AM | Report abuse

WOOHOO!!! The wait is over.
C-A-P-S! CAPS! CAPS! CAPS!

Posted by: DBnMD | October 1, 2009 8:05 AM | Report abuse

Let's Go Caps.

I'm excited and ready for the season to begin. However, tonight's game in Boston is a tough row to hoe. Everyone wants to win their home opener and Boston is a good team. The Bruins will also be energized by banner raising ceremonies so the Caps had better be ready from the get-go.

Posted by: BetterOffWithFedorov | October 1, 2009 8:10 AM | Report abuse

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

I am psyched and ready to go, and can't wait to see what happens tonight.

Has anyone heard what time the broadcast starts? I heard a rumor it was 6:30, but need to confirm; the countdown timer seems to lead to 7:00...

Posted by: irockthered | October 1, 2009 8:16 AM | Report abuse

They do look alike, don't they? The number 21 is really obvious in the photo. Bunch of Reskins sloberring wanna be's over at the times.

Posted by: WhyGo | October 1, 2009 8:20 AM | Report abuse

And I will probably post this at several points throughout the day- but is anyone heading to Hard Times in Clarendon for the game tonight? They had a sign advertising a viewing party, and it's all renovated now with an upstairs and tons of flat screens. I'll call later to find out drink/food specials

Posted by: Fro_ | October 1, 2009 8:29 AM | Report abuse

@IRTR

Per their website, it's set for 7 pm. Which probably means more like 7.10.
Looks like Hockey Central starts at 6.30- according to Comcast's website.


http://www.versus.com/nw/article/view/1367/?tf=nhl_article.tpl

Posted by: Fro_ | October 1, 2009 8:34 AM | Report abuse

Lindsay, the countdown ticker says "TV: Comcast Sportsnet"... that true?

Posted by: DCTexan90 | October 1, 2009 8:36 AM | Report abuse

It had to be a guy who wrote that Times photo caption. I like Chris Clark as much as the next gal, but mistaking Brooks Laich for CC is a little like mistaking Brad Pitt for David Spade.

Posted by: jerseygirl15 | October 1, 2009 8:38 AM | Report abuse

Now if we can only get the Versus-DirecTV flap fixed...sigh...

Posted by: AnnandaleAnnie | October 1, 2009 8:41 AM | Report abuse

@jerseygirl15

Yaaaa- one of my housemates has the Brooks Laich crush. And of course, me and my other housemate (a dude) are desperately trying to find a way for the 2 of them to meet, and get them to date. Or Green (thinking he would let us drive his lambo). Or (insert any Caps player here).
Clearly it hasn't happened...yet.

Posted by: Fro_ | October 1, 2009 8:44 AM | Report abuse

Posted by: Fro_ | October 1, 2009 8:47 AM | Report abuse

Will the game be available via the NHL package since versus is dropped by DirecTV?

Because DirecTV is having a free preview of the package until 10/24.

Posted by: DBnMD | October 1, 2009 8:50 AM | Report abuse

Does anyone know how the Acela Club works? I have tickets for Saturday and Acela club access. Do you make reservations or is it just a buffet? Do you pay extra? thanks in advance.

Posted by: mikesfan | October 1, 2009 8:53 AM | Report abuse

No. If your conduit to TV is via Directv, is does not matter if you have NHL Center Ice. YOU WILL NOT GET THE GAME. NHL Center Ice simply opens all feeds to the regional broadcasts. Tonight's Caps vs Bruins game is ONLY being shown on Versus not a regional broadcast. I had to explain this to my son a few times. He's a smart kid too. There was a story, I'll see if I can find it again, where Directv big wig (Chang I believe) said they were going to request to show the game but Versus had to approve it. That ain't gonna happen. Anyhow, NHL Center Ice doesn't solve the problem.

That's also why I keep trying to get you folks headed out to bars to avoid the Directv problem to call your bar and make sure they don't have Directv. Doesn't matter if you watched all Versus games there last season, if they have Directv they won't have the game either.

Posted by: fanohock1 | October 1, 2009 8:58 AM | Report abuse

Latest Directv/VS Story: http://www.nytimes.com/2009/10/01/sports/baseball/01versus.html

The 8th paragraph mentions the showing of games but they still need Versus approval.

Posted by: fanohock1 | October 1, 2009 9:00 AM | Report abuse

It was too soon and kind of not nice; this Direct TV / Comcast crap is unacceptable. Fortunately, Grandma NY has slingbox when idiocy such as this occurs. LETS GO CAPITALS

Posted by: mjwies11 | October 1, 2009 9:01 AM | Report abuse

@Fro_ - Thanks for the heads-up!

@@jerseygirl15 - Yeah, totally agreed on the "it was a guy who wrote the cut-line" angle," LOL!

I generally have to look at the "scruff" level to tell which one's which if I don't get part of a number in my photographs.

Telling Laich and Clark apart if they've both shaved recently, I need a clear shot of the eyes, or a straight-on view. Laich's face is more square; Clark's is pointier, but they are damned hard to tell apart from an angle, and if they're both clean-shaven, that inches towards impossible, and I have to go with "where was I shooting from, and where is my subject on the ice?".

Clark tends to be a bit scruffier by default, and warms up / stretches to my left as I'm facing the rink from behind the goal. But yeah, those two could be brothers, easily, and it does get frustrating sometimes. I try to get a piece of a number or a piece of Clark's "C" on his jersey so I'm sure who's who when I'm shooting.

Posted by: irockthered | October 1, 2009 9:02 AM | Report abuse

I have Directv but my in-laws on local cable that has VS. Dinner and a game at the in-laws house!! Luckily they only live 10 minutes down the road.

For anyone mad at Directv on this I'll share a quick little story. I am a Directv customer simply because COMCAST (who also owns VS) put the squeeze on my local cable company regarding continued broadcasting of COMCAST-DC. Our Cable company felt they were being asked to pay way too much and dropped them. Again, that is why I am a Directv customer in the 1st place. Now I know of 2 disputes in the last two years and the common denominator is COMCAST.

Posted by: fanohock1 | October 1, 2009 9:05 AM | Report abuse

DOING YOUR PART TO GET DIRECTV & VERSUS TOGETHER: As a long time DirecTV/Center Ice customer I'm not a happy guy and called DirecTV to politely let them know. I got an equally polite "we're trying to resolve, offering a competitive rate, blah, blah blah" (all indications are Versus is the one being unreasonable -- but we can only apply leverage to DirecTV). I said something like: "That's nice, and I appreciate it, but what's that do for me and the fact I can't watch my boys on opening night?" I got a wait a second and the rep came back in about a minute (checked my account no doubt -- in good standing) and offered me a $60 credit ($10/month x 6).

I'd rather have the games than the $60... but if enough people go through this (took less than 10 minutes) and DirecTV takes enough money out of their pockets they will be motivated to settle this.

All you DirecTV subscribers -- save yourself some bucks and do what you can to help settle this thing.

Posted by: Dave_in_Alexandria | October 1, 2009 9:07 AM | Report abuse

Usually, you don't HAVE to make reservations, because it is rarely full, but it is a good idea. It is a five star buffet at a single price for all you can eat, drinks and desert extra. Two adults with no booze or desert can get out of there for about $90 bucks (including tip). Really fancy food, sometimes it is awesome and sometimes it is just very good.

Posted by: WhyGo | October 1, 2009 9:09 AM | Report abuse

Will this day ever end?
Can't wait to get my own viewing party started (just hope the one Bs fan doesn't get the last laugh).

Posted by: ds_kelly | October 1, 2009 9:15 AM | Report abuse

I can't believe today is finally here! I'll be watching from Clyde's in Gallery Place -- the sheer proximity to Verizon Center is bound to do me good.

LET'S GO CAPS!

Posted by: nicko | October 1, 2009 9:17 AM | Report abuse

lol @ jerseygirl15! No offense to Clark, but that is a very good analogy.

So excited for the puck to drop! Let's go Caps!!!

Posted by: hillg | October 1, 2009 9:18 AM | Report abuse

Yaaaa- one of my housemates has the Brooks Laich crush. And of course, me and my other housemate (a dude) are desperately trying to find a way for the 2 of them to meet, and get them to date. Or Green (thinking he would let us drive his lambo). Or (insert any Caps player here).
Clearly it hasn't happened...yet.

Posted by: Fro_ | October 1, 2009 8:44 AM

I thought female fans were trying to get away from the whole puckbunny stigma.

I wonder what percentage of female fans watch hockey because they are hot for one of the players as opposed to watching because they actually have a passion for the sport.


Posted by: tmac2yao | October 1, 2009 9:21 AM | Report abuse

My fiance likes(d) Fedorov and Semin. I think they both look weird. Oh well, I guess that doesn't say much about me.

TODAY IS THE DAY!

I have DirecTV, and I don't even care. I will be at a friend's house watching the game.

Posted by: richmondphil | October 1, 2009 9:24 AM | Report abuse

@Dave_in_Alexandria

Some of our luckier fellow complainees received center ice for free. I was not so lucky.

Posted by: richmondphil | October 1, 2009 9:25 AM | Report abuse

@tmac2yao - I can only speak for myself, but looks have nothing to do with my love for hockey, especially since during the game they're all wearing helmets and many of them are wearing face shields, so it's hard to see their faces anyway, and their bodies are totally covered by all the padding.

Soccer and tennis, however, are another story... :)

Posted by: hillg | October 1, 2009 9:26 AM | Report abuse

But I just read fanohock1's post. I mean, getting Center Ice for free is certainly better than a credit of 50-60 bucks I still think (you get all the other games..not bad), but it won't do any good for the VS. games it seems.

Posted by: richmondphil | October 1, 2009 9:28 AM | Report abuse

This is Christmas, for sure. Four months ago, we were crushed, but a new year begins tonight, so let's forget the past and look to the future. Can't wait. I predict BB will start Jose in net tonight; what's everyone else think?

ROCK THE RED!

Posted by: redrocker2 | October 1, 2009 9:39 AM | Report abuse

FYI, on the VS/Direct TV battle. Direct TV wants to move Versus to a separate sports package that will cost everyone more money. Comcast's (owners of Versus) stand is that they are the official network of the NHL and should be placed on the same, no additional cost, tier as ESPN.

Comes down to whether or not it will cost us Direct TV viewers an extra $5 per month or if Versus will get their way. I for one actually support Versus in that I think it is ridiculous to pay any extra money for this network.

Posted by: CTCapsPhan | October 1, 2009 9:40 AM | Report abuse

I thought female fans were trying to get away from the whole puckbunny stigma.

Posted by: tmac2yao | October 1, 2009 9:21 AM

To be fair, it's more a matter of my housemate and I trying to pimp her out to Brooks- for our sake. She's a total health nut too- so what really sold her was when we watched the Caps Cribs, and they showed his kitchen/fridge. Was chock full of yogurt and fruit, and the shelves were completely stocked with cereal (she's a cereal junnkie).

Although it was kind of a reality check when we were watching a game one time (all the time) and we're spouting off Brooks Laich facts- and she stated: "It's painfully clear who has the crush on Brooks."

Eh- I'm ok with it.

Posted by: Fro_ | October 1, 2009 9:41 AM | Report abuse

Its a travishammockery that we DirectTV users are getting screwed and are forced to venture to bars, where there will be beer and boneless wings with ranch dressing, possibly chicks with low self-esteem and beer.

Posted by: JSchon | October 1, 2009 9:44 AM | Report abuse

I think it will be Jose too. Almost want to say "mark my words."

Posted by: richmondphil | October 1, 2009 9:47 AM | Report abuse

@Fro - nothing wrong with that. :)

Posted by: hillg | October 1, 2009 9:48 AM | Report abuse

bleu cheese.

Posted by: richmondphil | October 1, 2009 9:49 AM | Report abuse

I agree, I think it'll be Jose. It seems the starting job is his to lose.

Posted by: hillg | October 1, 2009 9:51 AM | Report abuse

Thank God this offseason is finally over.
A Caps fan up here in Boston, actually going to the game (sorry, not trying to rub it in, but I'm too excited). I understand what you all are going through though with the Versus ordeal. I don't get it because of basic cable, so all I can do is the nhl.tv thing and hope nothing good happens on the days they play on Versus. I don't know what I'm going to do when the playoffs roll around.

Posted by: Capcrazy77 | October 1, 2009 9:52 AM | Report abuse

Soccer and tennis, however, are another story... :)

Posted by: hillg | October 1, 2009 9:26 AM

I'm going to assume you're referring to Ronaldo, Torres and Nadal to name a few?

My female friends remind me often of their effect on them.

Posted by: Fro_ | October 1, 2009 9:53 AM | Report abuse

@mike- I watched most of game 7 vs the rags last season from the Acela club, if you get a seat at a table its a great place top watch the game. i didn't buy any food, so it was basically like sitting in a bar. Its a great view of the ice and they have an outdoor patio for fresh air.

Posted by: doncosmic | October 1, 2009 9:55 AM | Report abuse

So pumped up for tonight's game!

BTW, Lindsay, it's a good read when you post the links section. Quite witty, I must say. Couldn't find an e-mail address to say it, so I figured I'd post it. :)

Posted by: covesdog | October 1, 2009 9:56 AM | Report abuse

@tmac2yao - Speaking for myself, I enjoy hockey for hockey's sake, and I definitely know the difference between offsides and icing. Besides... you can't check out hot bods or faces in hockey gear, anyway! Do I object to a side of "hot" with my hockey? Of course not! But that isn't the reason I watch hockey. At all. In fact, it doesn't even come into play.

Implying that women like hockey because there are hot hockey players is like implying that men like hockey because there are ice girls, scantilly-clad and bouncing all over the place between frames.

You guys have the Red Rockers to drool over; why shouldn't we be allowed to drool over the players, even if it ISN'T the reason we go to games?

Posted by: irockthered | October 1, 2009 9:59 AM | Report abuse

Does anyone know how the Acela Club works? I have tickets for Saturday and Acela club access. Do you make reservations or is it just a buffet? Do you pay extra? thanks in advance.

Posted by: mikesfan | October 1, 2009 8:53 AM | Report abuse


If you hit the buffet (reservations req'd), it's extra, $40 per head I think, but the grub is nice. But you can go to the bar also.

Posted by: Section117 | October 1, 2009 9:59 AM | Report abuse

@Fro - there are a lot of cute tennis players and endless numbers of dark and handsome soccer players, and not only are they good-looking, but they're all in such incredible shape.

Sorry, this is totally off-topic. I've been a hockey fan since I was a little kid and it has absolutely nothing to do with the players' looks. As for tonight, I have a pretty small, non-HD television, so even if they do close-ups on Laich, the effect will be mostly lost on me. ;) It's all about the game!

Posted by: hillg | October 1, 2009 10:01 AM | Report abuse

@irockthered - well said!

Posted by: hillg | October 1, 2009 10:02 AM | Report abuse

@ fanohock1
Thanks for the information...that is what I was figuring would be the case...but was holding out hope.

Posted by: DBnMD | October 1, 2009 10:02 AM | Report abuse

@redrocker2 - Boudreau has publically stated that the #1 job is Theodore's to lose, so yes, I expect you're right about who gets the start in net.

The big question is: which two D-men sit the game out, since we're carrying 8?

Is it the two least likely to play well?

Or is it two who should play well, but they're sitting so we can shop others around to other teams to try and make a trade?

This is one of the Great Mysteries of the Universe!

BTW, I did see a quote from Boudreau on why he isn't playing Nylander tonight, and it has nothing to do with trying to force Nylander to make an exit to anywhere that will have him and everything to do with the need to have a fourth line wing, neither of which Nylander can be effectively. He said they tried that experiment last season, and it failed. That is why they called up from Hershey.

I do not know if I have access to the location where the quote was from work, but I will try and pull it for people who want sources.

Posted by: irockthered | October 1, 2009 10:04 AM | Report abuse

yesterday i saw a quote from Theodore that BB told him he was starting tonight.

Posted by: capsfansince74 | October 1, 2009 10:11 AM | Report abuse

" I for one actually support Versus in that I think it is ridiculous to pay any extra money for this network. " CTCapsPhan

a) I hope you are enjoying "Joy" (just going with the PH in yur name...). I love it.

b) Versus is owned by Comcast so Comcast gets the channel no matter the cost. They are jacking up the rate DTV, their competitor, pays to play their stuff. That forces DTV to either eat the cost or raise the rate to subscribers. Neither of them is the good guy in this. Versus is worth more now than what Direct TV used to pay but not as much as they are asking. They need to find middle ground.

Just my take.
Justin

Posted by: megatroll1 | October 1, 2009 10:11 AM | Report abuse

Which channel was it that had the puck hi-lighted? FOX?

God that was awful.

Posted by: Fro_ | October 1, 2009 10:23 AM | Report abuse

I've been watching this team since the early 80s and moved to Texas in 2002. My father was going to games since the team was founded. Neither of us ever saw any Red Rockers and neither of us went to hockey games to watch females. There are plenty of other places to take care of that need.

I firmly believe that most (not all) women watch hockey for a different reason than men. There is nothing wrong with that beyond the fact that they often get offended whenever that is pointed out.

The main reason this topic is on my mind is there was a thread made over on the Caps message board about a Stars ad that featured chicks in bikinis. A few women seemed to think it was trashy and I found that hypocritical given that I believe that the driving force behind the viewership of most women is sex-based as well.

Posted by: tmac2yao | October 1, 2009 10:24 AM | Report abuse

^^^^ Ohhhh boy....

Posted by: Fro_ | October 1, 2009 10:26 AM | Report abuse

Nylander gone?

http://translate.google.com/translate?u=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.hockeysverige.se%2Fnews_show.html%3Fid%3D8714174&sl=sv&tl=en&hl=en&ie=UTF-8

Michael Nylander's NHL-adventure look more and more seems to be over. The latest Russian data claims that the Swede will now be up to date for the game in Lokomotiv Yaroslavl.

It is Yaroslavl-based newspaper that writes about RIA Yaroslavl great interest and refers to sources within the club.

Yaroslavl said recently terminated the contract with another NHL veteran, Czechs Radek Bonk, and are looking for a new alien to replenish his squad with. There are already Daniel Tjärnqvist, Zbynek Irgl, Josef Vasicek and Richard Zednik as the team's foreign players.

Previously, Avangard Omsk, with Nylander's buddy Jaromir Jagr in the head, expressed interest in Nylander as the last NHL lockout playing for both Kazan and St. Petersburg.

Brother Peter plays for Amur Khabarovsk, a club address as unlikely to be considered for Michael.

Posted by: freakinandpeakin | October 1, 2009 10:32 AM | Report abuse

Yes! Hockey is finally back and I get to see the Caps live in 16 days time!

Excited? Nah, not really...

Posted by: DaveUKCapsFan | October 1, 2009 10:34 AM | Report abuse

Interesting..I'll wait for a more official update though.

Posted by: richmondphil | October 1, 2009 10:36 AM | Report abuse

Yep, alexovetjkin reports the same:

KHL's Locomotive Yaroslavl, former Varlamov's team, has annulled its contract with Radek Bonek who played for Locomotive only 7 games. SovSport interviewed Bonek and Czech player has refused to give exact reason why he quit. But here's the question about his replacement:

SovSport.ru, Oct. 1, 2009:

Q.: There's some info that Locomotive wants to get Michael Nylander to replace you.
A.: It's probably true. I've heard about it as well.


Posted by: CodePoetry | October 1, 2009 10:36 AM | Report abuse

How bad is Nyls doghouse?

If you agree to move to Yaroslavl from DC with the family... it's bad...

Posted by: CodePoetry | October 1, 2009 10:38 AM | Report abuse

If Nyls is at Loco then there's little doubt both he and the GM were working this hard together. Like I said in the last chain, I think Nyls wants to play and D.C. just isn't the place for him. I don't think GM was sitting him for any other reason than trying to make the team stronger. Nyls has been nothing but professional through this whole thing and the hate here was emabarrassing. I wish him luck.

If it's true, that clears a load of cap space and the team is sitting pretty.

Posted by: saintex | October 1, 2009 10:44 AM | Report abuse

codepoetry,
i beg to differ. the high temp in yaroslavl today will be 49 degrees w/rain! sounds GREAT!!! but i'd probably go there for six months getting paid $3M american dollars....

Posted by: dcsportsfan1 | October 1, 2009 10:45 AM | Report abuse

Re: Why women watch hockey

Since it seems we're playing the sweeping generalization game... have you ever really looked at the majority of hockey players? Broken noses, missing teeth...well if that doesn't turn me on I don't know what will ;)

And I've been (unhealthily?) obsessed with the Caps since the early 90s (back when boys still had Cooties) - I can tell you that I watch hockey for the speed of play, the intensity, the talent, the hard hits, and the fights. Even since moving to Texas in '05, I refuse to become an Aeros fan, and still find a way to watch most of the Caps games -- if I just wanted to watch some athletic guys, there would be much easier ways to do it.

Posted by: DCTexan90 | October 1, 2009 10:50 AM | Report abuse

Heck, look no further than Ovie. Not an attractive man by any stretch of the imagination, but there's nobody I'd rather watch on the ice.

Posted by: hillg | October 1, 2009 10:53 AM | Report abuse

another article found by someone on the unofficial caps message boards. Not translated, but it is pretty clear that it says the same as the earlier article.

http://www.aftonbladet.se/sportbladet/hockeybladet/internationellt/khl/article5888861.ab

Posted by: freakinandpeakin | October 1, 2009 10:55 AM | Report abuse

Ovie looks like Jaws from James Bond series.

Nylander looks like Robert Englund. (the guy who played Freddy Kruger)

Posted by: richmondphil | October 1, 2009 10:55 AM | Report abuse

@DCTexan90

That's why I put "not all" in parentheses in my last post. I made room for exceptions such as yourself. Let's just put it this way: Puckbunnies exist and none of them are men. At least a significant portion of women watch hockey for different reasons than men.

Either way, I assume we have at least one thing in common. We both apparently live in or near Houston since you brought up the Aeros.

Posted by: tmac2yao | October 1, 2009 10:55 AM | Report abuse

@tmac2yao - I will very much beg to differ with you on your opinion of why "most" women watch hockey. Unfortunately, since your view seems misinformed at best, and downright mysoginistic at worst, I seriously doubt my ability to convince you of my side of this argument by myself. So.

Ladies? Back me up here. Why do you watch hockey?

[A] Because the players are hawt.
[B] Because you like the sport, and enjoy watching the plays develop, watching the goals, watching the checks, etc.
[C] It's all about the fights!

My answer to this question is a very firm [B].

I watch more than just the Capitals. I subscribe to Center Ice, the NHL Network, and an online Russian channel so that I can watch KHL games. I watch every game I get the opportunity to watch, in part so that I can learn the game, learn which referees will call what penalties, and why; and in general because I enjoy a fast-paced sport that keeps my mind engaged, unlike baseball (you blink and you miss the action), football (lots of waiting around for a very short burst of action), or basketball (yuck in general due to events of my youth which I will not go into here).

Posted by: irockthered | October 1, 2009 10:56 AM | Report abuse

1) Ovie hat tricks tonight.

2) Lucic and Semin fight, Semin breaks Lucic back, hes out for the season.

3) Schultz and Chara have an extended conversation on if Schultz is really the next Chara.

mark my words.

Posted by: richmondphil | October 1, 2009 11:01 AM | Report abuse

@irockthered - it's a very firm [B] for me too, and it's [B] for all of my female friends who consider themselves hockey fans. I don't know any women who watch hockey because they think the players are hot. Because of all the above-mentioned reasons - the pads, the helmets, the fact that most hockey players aren't actually that attractive to begin with, etc. - hockey isn't a sport that lends itself well to being watched for this reason. The only other reason that the women I know watch hockey, besides [B], is because their significant others are hockey fans and they're tagging along and learning or at least trying to share his interest in the sport.

Perhaps we need to distinguish between "female hockey fans" and "groupies"?

Posted by: hillg | October 1, 2009 11:01 AM | Report abuse

The only other reason that the women I know watch hockey, besides [B], is because their significant others are hockey fans and they're tagging along and learning or at least trying to share his interest in the sport.

_____________________

My fiance falls under this category. I don't mind. She may be a more die hard fan than me at this point.

Posted by: richmondphil | October 1, 2009 11:05 AM | Report abuse

@richmondphil

re: 3) Schultz and Chara...

Thread Over. Very nicely done.

@irockthered

I'm sorry for totally yoinking your BOLD@ way of responding to people but I like the style. Also, Club Scarlet makes my girlfriend's blood boil, so she's in the same [B] camp as the rest of y'all. I really don't think there are a lot of women out there who watch it just for the hotties on the ice.

Posted by: SmallZ827 | October 1, 2009 11:06 AM | Report abuse

"Nylander looks like Robert Englund."

Fact.


"3) Schultz and Chara have an extended conversation on if Schultz is really the next Chara."

Good stuff this morning- making the work day fly by.

Posted by: Fro_ | October 1, 2009 11:06 AM | Report abuse

Lokomotiv? Are you SERIOUS? I can hope with the best of them... not sure Lokomotiv is a serious contender for the Gagarin Cup, but still... that would be fantastic for us, if a bit too late for Chris Bourque...

Локомотив (Lokomotiv) is sitting in 14th place today (out of 24) in the KHL, with a record of:

2-W | 2-L | 0-OTW | 0-OTL | 1-SOW | 3-SOL

(the KHL breaks out overtime wins/losses and shootout wins/losses separately in their standings).

Without Radek Bonek, Lokomotiv has 4 non-Russian players:

Yozef Vashichek (Czech Republic)
Richard Zednik (Slovakia)
Zbynek Irgl (Czech Republic)
Daniel Chernkvist (Sweden)

I wonder if the limit is 3 or 5... it seems like they're going with 5 for the most part in the KHL... in any case, my fingers are crossed, VERY hard, for this to be true.

Posted by: irockthered | October 1, 2009 11:06 AM | Report abuse

@SmallZ827 - Go right ahead and gank my style; it's not copyrighted, and it makes it a LOT easier for the people who are being addressed to see that they're being addressed, IMO. ;-)

For anyone else who wants to do this:

<b>what-you-want-bold-faced</b>

will do the trick. :-)

Posted by: irockthered | October 1, 2009 11:08 AM | Report abuse

Lokomotiv is Varlamov's club! They used to be pretty good actually. Isn't Yashin on it too?

Posted by: richmondphil | October 1, 2009 11:09 AM | Report abuse

Sorry, as a firmly and happily very single hockey fan, I left off:

[D] Because your SO watches hockey. :)

So we can add that in there too...

Posted by: irockthered | October 1, 2009 11:11 AM | Report abuse

I would agree on the votes for B. But I do love a good fight.

Posted by: mikesfan | October 1, 2009 11:13 AM | Report abuse

@irockthered

Gank? What, a hockey nerd AND a WoW nerd???

Posted by: SmallZ827 | October 1, 2009 11:13 AM | Report abuse

@richmondphil - there's a couple like that who sit in my row - the guy grew up a Caps fan, his wife didn't know anything about hockey when they first got together, and by now she's at least as into it as he is, if not more so.

On the other hand, I'm a bigger hockey fan (and a bigger sports fan in general) than almost every guy I've dated, so it was so refreshing to meet my fiance, who was already a big sports fan and also grew up rooting for the Caps and Skins. We spent almost our whole first date talking about our childhood memories of the Caps. :)

Posted by: hillg | October 1, 2009 11:13 AM | Report abuse

@SmallZ827 - LOL! No, actually, I picked up "gank" from friends; I don't play WoW.

Posted by: irockthered | October 1, 2009 11:15 AM | Report abuse

From one of my previous posts: "Most (not all)..."

Whatever the actual ratio of "female hockey fans" to "puckbunnies" may be, the fact is that there is a very significant population of women fans (puckbunnies) that has no parallel among men.

I also believe that the percentage of females that watch hockey for different reasons than men is much higher than any of the female posters that have responded to me so far would want to admit.

Again, for those women that complain about ads that use hot women to appeal to male fans (such as the ones over on the Caps message board), consider the fact that many women do watch hockey to see men they consider to be hot (even if you are not one of them).

Posted by: tmac2yao | October 1, 2009 11:16 AM | Report abuse

A lot of men watch women tennis for the sex appeal.

I actually have no idea if that's true. I'm not a sociologist.

Posted by: richmondphil | October 1, 2009 11:18 AM | Report abuse

Ah yes, the signifcant-other-watching-because-you-made-her. Worked out awesome for me at the time. However, after a less-than-clean break-up, she went and got herself season tix in the next section over.

Backfire.

Posted by: Fro_ | October 1, 2009 11:19 AM | Report abuse

Re: more rumors of Nylander going to Russia...

He wouldn't necessarily have to uproot his family. The last possible day of their championship series is April 27th. Here's the KHL season sched (from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2009%E2%80%9310_KHL_season):

"The regular season started on 10 September 2009 and will end on 7 March 2010 with a break for the Olympic winter games from 8 February to 3 March. The playoffs are scheduled to end on 27 April."

Moms and dads go off to war and are away from their families for significant periods of time. So, me thinks that a hockey player being paid millions of dollars to ply his trade could take a leave of absence from his family in order to not have to sit in the press box all year.

Posted by: MetalCapsFan | October 1, 2009 11:19 AM | Report abuse

http://alexovetjkin.blogspot.com/2009/10/nylader-to-locomotive-rumor.html

Hopefully this is true and we can get rid of Nylander once and for all.

Posted by: CapsFan44 | October 1, 2009 11:19 AM | Report abuse

@tmac2yao - this is all speculation, obviously. All I'm saying is, I know a lot of women who are into hockey, and none of them are into it for the reason you suggest. I'm sure there are many women who fall under the "puckbunny" category rather than the "true fans of the sport of hockey" category, but I'm not personally acquainted with any of them.

(I'm "ganking" this bold name technique too. Whatever that means. :))

Posted by: hillg | October 1, 2009 11:21 AM | Report abuse

@richmondphil - If you're talking about defenseman Aleksey Sergeyevich Vasilyev, then yes, he's on Lokomotiv. He's wearing #41, and has 2 goals (one EV, one PP) and 2 assists in 8 games so far, if I'm reading the page correctly.

Posted by: irockthered | October 1, 2009 11:22 AM | Report abuse

Also, 10 minutes into the first frame, it's Lokomotiv 1, Barys 1.

Metallurg beat Amur 6-2 today; Fedor Fedorov got two minutes for diving (they call it "simulation" in the KHL), and Sergei did nothing of note in their team's victory, but the team is in 1st place in the KHL, with a 7-0-0-0-0-1 record (W-L-OTW-OTL-SOW-SOL). :-)

Posted by: irockthered | October 1, 2009 11:24 AM | Report abuse

I should add: as interesting as this sociological discussion is, when it comes right down to it I couldn't care less what motivates people to watch hockey. As long as the arena is filled with Caps fans, I'm happy!

Posted by: hillg | October 1, 2009 11:25 AM | Report abuse

@tmac2yao - You are full of bologna. I have NEVER met a female fan of hockey who watches it strictly because she thinks the players are hot!

I will ask the next 100 women I see, at random, at the Verizon Center on Saturday to tell me why they watch hockey, and I guarantee you that not a single one will tell me it's because hockey players are soooooo dreamy! :-p

Posted by: irockthered | October 1, 2009 11:26 AM | Report abuse

@IRTR

Oh, no I should have said was his club. Yes, our very own Semyon Varlamov spent his RSL/KHL years with Lokomotiv. I believe he carried them in the playoffs once, but they lost in the final round.

Alexei Yashin is also on that team.

Posted by: richmondphil | October 1, 2009 11:26 AM | Report abuse

Additionally it's no secret that the Caps need to find out exactly where the holes on defense are (unless Woods fixes them) as the March deadline approaches so they can be filled properly for a deep playoff run.

Posted by: fanohock1 | October 1, 2009 7:32 AM


This year's trade deadline could be a bit more interesting than normal. Due to the Olympic break, NHL clubs play no games between Feb. 14-28. Games resume on the eve of March 1st, with the deadline less than 2 days later at 3:00pm EST on March 3rd. Not a lot of time to see if probs that manifested themselves prior to the break have worked themselves out. And, with the possibility of injuries happening during the Olympics, GMs will likely be pulling their hair out trying to decide what, if any, moves they will make (or be forced to make) come deadline day.

Oh yeah, almost forgot, LETS GO CAPS!!!!

Posted by: MetalCapsFan | October 1, 2009 11:32 AM | Report abuse

My wife is not as into hockey as I am, but she's coming along. I still think it's funny that she speaks of the SC playoffs thusly:

"Oh, they're aboat to start playing for the Beer Keg, eh?"

Posted by: Rhino40 | October 1, 2009 11:33 AM | Report abuse

My wife is not as into hockey as I am, but she's coming along. I still think it's funny that she speaks of the SC playoffs thusly:

"Oh, they're aboat to start playing for the Beer Keg, eh?"

Posted by: Rhino40 | October 1, 2009 11:34 AM | Report abuse

Knuble not on the ice at the morning skate....Nylander is up on the second line, via Corey's twitter.

Posted by: ThePat | October 1, 2009 11:35 AM | Report abuse

@richmondphil - I don't see Alexei Yashin on the roster. The Алек...'s I see mostly have surnames ending in ов (ov).

Posted by: irockthered | October 1, 2009 11:37 AM | Report abuse

Lots of offense is going to be up at the deadline as well. Lots of goalies as well.

Though many of them may get re-signed . Like Luongo and Ward and Nash. Kolvachuk is a big one.

Posted by: richmondphil | October 1, 2009 11:37 AM | Report abuse

@ tmac2yao
I won't deny that there are 'puckbunnies' out there -- and you probably won't find them here on this blog ;). You did say most, not all, but I still don't think it's that many. Anyway - I'm not trying to say you're completely full of it, just stand up for those of us ladies out there that watch for irockthered's reason [B].

As far as watching hockey because of a SO? ...that is why my boyfriend watches - because he's a smart one and knows that there is no way I will turn off the game - ESPECIALLY those few times I can see the Caps on nat'l TV here in Houston. He has this weird ability to casually watch sports and not get invested, which I can't fathom and hope to someday make him at least half the hockey-lover I am...

Posted by: DCTexan90 | October 1, 2009 11:37 AM | Report abuse

@ThePat - You said what?

I wonder if Knuble is resting, hurt, or scratched for tonight... very odd.

Posted by: irockthered | October 1, 2009 11:38 AM | Report abuse

ThePat is quick, like a jaguar. I won't reduce myself to Twitteringing...

Posted by: hockymn22 | October 1, 2009 11:38 AM | Report abuse

He may have retired. It was the team he joined after he retired from the NHL.

Posted by: richmondphil | October 1, 2009 11:39 AM | Report abuse

To the female fans out there:

How come you never see male puckbunnies?

Assuming you acknowledge the existence of puckbunnies, what percentage of female fans do you think fall into this category?

Do you agree there is a signficant difference between the male and female populations of hockey fans, i.e., there are a lot of female fans that watch the sport because they are attracted to a player or players while there is no significant group of male fans that do the same?

The bottom line is that the female population of hockey fans is made up of both puckbunnies and fans of the sport while the male population is made up entirely of fans of the sport.

Posted by: tmac2yao | October 1, 2009 11:39 AM | Report abuse

Lots of offense is going to be up at the deadline as well. Lots of goalies as well.

Though many of them may get re-signed . Like Luongo and Ward and Nash. Kolvachuk is a big one.

Posted by: richmondphil | October 1, 2009 11:37 AM | Report abuse

Luoungo already re-signed for long term and Ward re-upped yesterday (I believe) for 5 or 6 years.

Posted by: freakinandpeakin | October 1, 2009 11:42 AM | Report abuse

@freakin

Yes, I was pointing out that Luongo, Ward, and Nash already re-signed.

Posted by: richmondphil | October 1, 2009 11:47 AM | Report abuse

This is getting silly. How the heck would we know what percentage of people of either gender watch the sport for any particular reason? What information would we have on which to base our guesses? Please, show me a scientific poll and then we can discuss. All we have to go on right now is our personal experience, and personally I've never met any women who watch hockey because they think the players are hot.

Do I think there are many men who watch men's professional hockey because they find the male players attractive? No, I seriously doubt it. Are there many men who watch women's tennis or women's beach volleyball or other sports involving women because they think those women are hot? Absolutely. Let's compare apples to apples, shall we?

Posted by: hillg | October 1, 2009 11:48 AM | Report abuse

Corey also says there is some indication Varlamov will be in goal tonight.

Time to switch my fantasy rosters!

Posted by: richmondphil | October 1, 2009 11:55 AM | Report abuse

@tmac2yao:

What the puck is wrong with you? To contend (without data, no less) that most female fans watch because of the hotness of the players seems sexist and out to lunch. Move on to a different topic.

My observation (anecdotal, not based on data either) interacting with fans male & female is that they are fans because they love the game and their team.

I may get a kick out of watching Sharypova and Nadal is a fine looking man, but that doesn't mean that I don't watch the other matches and have the TV on to enjoy the tennis. You think women have a different experience in that regard than you do? Why would that be?

Posted by: Sonyask | October 1, 2009 12:51 PM | Report abuse

Had to chime in on the "why women watch hockey". Now, I know the more seasoned female Capitals fan watches for the sport but my girl cousin and I had to suffer through one of the Caps' games against the Rangers during the quarterfinals with a gaggle of teen girls sitting next to us, who squeeled like sad little girls whenever they saw Avery or Semin come to the bench. Made it feel more like a Jonas Brothers' concert than a hockey game.

If the more seasoned Caps' fans (men and women alike) could please school these young 'uns about hockey, the better off we'll all be. Oh, and for the father or mother who thought it'd be cute to send those girls to a freakin' hockey game because they're favorite player Semin or Avery was cute, SHAME ON YOU!

Posted by: LeftCoastCapsFan | October 1, 2009 2:13 PM | Report abuse

in case no one else posted this the Caps game will be streamed here. http://www.justin.tv/cobra2010

BTW DTV Center ICE will not be carrying the VS only games such as tonight so stay away from Center Ice if you think that will help

Posted by: CapCenterholdover | October 1, 2009 4:39 PM | Report abuse

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