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Morning Reading List

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*Rarely a game goes by at Verizon Center when Bruce Boudreau isn't asked about his team's success at home. The Capitals winning ways in Washington are hardly new at this point in the season, but as they continue their tear on Verizon Center ice another milestone is within reach -- the franchise record for home wins in a season, which stands at 30.

*Dan Steinberg over at the D.C. Sports Bog is keeping up a steady stream of Caps posts for you to enjoy. On today's menu: A breakdown of Boudreau's tour of the radio airwaves yesterday (He's not a morning skate fan.) And the first of many regular posts on the quirks, stylings and habits of your fellow Caps fans.

*NHL.com spotlights Mike Green under the headline that the Caps young defenseman is "emerging as a strong Norris Trophy candidate." (Don't forget to read the sidebar on the story about Green and ultimate fighting.)

*Joe Beninati recently started up his own blog on the Comcast Sportsnet website. Thanks to the Caps PR staff for a heads up on this one.

*In case you missed it back when Boudreau was inducted to the AHL Hall of Fame. Here is the tribute video played during the ceremony and thanks to Steinberg for catching the YouTube addition.


*Michael Nylander is mentioned briefly in a story about what moves the Rangers might make at the trade deadline.

*NHLPA Executive Director Paul Kelly doesn't believe fighting should be eliminated from hockey but suggests that there might be ways to make it safer for the players. I haven't brought up the fighting debate much until now, but what do you think? Should fighting stay in the game the way things are now, see slight alterations for the sake of safety or be eliminated all together?

Kings Cliff notes:
*Los Angeles has won four of its past five games, and are a respectable 10th overall with a penalty kill at 82.3 percent and the 15th-best power play, converting at 18.7 percent. They're in 12th place in the Western Conference but at just four-points out of a playoff spot the Kings are fighting to edge their way up in the standings.

*The Kings will be without Denis Gauthier, who is serving a five game suspension after elbowing Montreal's Josh Georges.

*Here are Los Angeles' lines from their most recent game, a 1-0 win over struggling Ottawa. Something to really keep an eye on is the combination of Kyle Calder, Jarret Stoll and Dustin Brown, which has helped the Kings regain their offensive footing.

In the system:
*Remember about the goaltender shortage in Hershey? The Bears remedied the problem by signing Kris Mayotte to a tryout contract.

*The Bears visit Philadelphia on Friday before returning home to host San Antonio and Portland on Saturday and Sunday respectively. And of course, here are your Bear Tracks.

By Katie Carrera  |  February 5, 2009; 7:42 AM ET
 
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Next: No Kozlov, Johnson

Comments

"RED!"

"O!"

Posted by: Section117 | February 5, 2009 7:47 AM | Report abuse

@section117

"its all your fault!"

Posted by: SombreroGuy | February 5, 2009 7:53 AM | Report abuse

The Ref is out to lunch
The Ref is out to lunch
Eat me Ref
Eat me Ref
Munch Munch Munch

Posted by: gtydings | February 5, 2009 7:56 AM | Report abuse

Now THAT'S an EPL-ish chant.

Posted by: Section117 | February 5, 2009 7:58 AM | Report abuse

"RED!"

"O!"

Posted by: Section117 | February 5, 2009 7:47 AM

That mess has to stop! And please spare me the "tradition" rationalizations. First of all, this isn't Baltimore. Keep that crap up there! Secondly, you disrespect the singer and, most importantly, the meaning behind the song and the American flag. I am so sick of how people today don't respect what once was considered sacred.

Posted by: stwasm | February 5, 2009 7:59 AM | Report abuse

Tarik ~ Is there any word yet on whether or not Johnny needs surgery?

Posted by: caryh | February 5, 2009 8:00 AM | Report abuse

*snort*

@Capsfannmiss - I replied to your Pronger commentary last night in the last post; I'm not going to repost it here... There's one problem with Prongs that I neglected to mention, though.

$6.25m cap hit, and he's not UFA until 2010-11. I don't think we can afford him this year. :-(

Posted by: irockthered | February 5, 2009 8:01 AM | Report abuse

@stwasm:

I have only been going to games for 15 years(only 23) but even in USAir Arena people did the "O" thing.

In other countries people sing their hymn, ours needs too big of a range vocally so we say the O.

Posted by: trunkenmath | February 5, 2009 8:11 AM | Report abuse

Coach Boudreau's interview on EITM if you missed it yesterday. Very in depth:

http://www.eitmonline.com/eitmonline2/media/eitmlive/257FA4490E_boudreau_EITM020409.mp3?catid=859&id=26515

Posted by: CapsSkins | February 5, 2009 8:22 AM | Report abuse

Ted is right now checking Green's SPC to make sure UFC is one of the banned activities.

Posted by: koalatek | February 5, 2009 8:24 AM | Report abuse

"Get off your knees ref- you're blowing the game"

Always a fan favorite in north country NY.

Posted by: Fro_ | February 5, 2009 8:25 AM | Report abuse

O is baltimore. Keep that mess up there.

RED!!! is Caps hockey. Rock the Red, Omit the O

Disrespect the singer, Ha! Sorry Bitsy Russell. Hey, does anyone remember Glen Cunningham?

I'm not trying to be a smart @$$ here, but can someone tell me anytime OTHER than a sporting event where you hear the national anthem? I don't even know if they play it at the 4th of July... it's all Yankee Doodle Dandy, God Belss America, and America the Beautiful.

rock the RED glare!!!!

Posted by: griz0615 | February 5, 2009 8:34 AM | Report abuse

Griz, when was the last time you watched fireworks somewhere? :) Usually they play the anthem right before the fireworks start.

I'm tired of the anthem/cheering debate. I can't stop people from doing whatever chant/thing they're going to do, whatever I may think of it, so I refuse to get my blood pressure up about it any more. In case some of you hadn't noticed, we have a game coming up tonight, and against the kind of team that has driven us insane all season long.

- Western Conference
- mediocre numbers
- mediocre scoring
- good defense

Typical Western Conference team. Our numbers SUCK against these types of teams. Here's hoping the guys actually show up tonight and give it 100%, because we cannot blow these guys off, especially not if we want revenge for the drubbing we got in LA a couple of months ago.

Posted by: kittypawz | February 5, 2009 8:51 AM | Report abuse

Let people cheer, that's what I say. I only have a problem when our team is booed by our own fans for being 2nd in the East and being 19-3-1 @ home.

Posted by: JSchon | February 5, 2009 8:53 AM | Report abuse

Hey _____, You're lucky the ice is frozen, cause SH*T DON'T FLOAT!

(to the tune of, if you're happy and you know it..)
If you can't hit the net, hit the ref!
*CLAP CLAP*

There are some more not-so-blog-friendly ones we'd use relating to the goalie's sister, rubber and creases.

And, for when a guy's taken down and there's no call:
Don't worry __Ref's Name__, __player's name__ always skates that way!

As for the "It's All Your Fault..." Personally, it's one of my favorites, and can be very powerful after breakaway goals, or things that are 100% the goalie's fault. But, this is the NHL, things like that, Hefty Hefty Hefty, "Goalie....Seive" seem to work better in smaller rinks where you can actually get into the goalie's head. These guys are used to some much more creative and dirty heckling. Our college, during stoppages in play, we'd ..."chant" the goalie's actions. "DRINK DRINK DRINK DRINK..." "SKATE SKATE SKATE.... (before play starts) SQUAT!...... SQUEEZE!...... SUCK!"

Either way, the fact that we've got people willing to do the very important job of "cheerleading" their area/section is a great addition to the arena over years past. This is a good problem to have. And anyone willing to bring something more creative than "____ SUCKS" is OK in my book. Example. Instead of "Let's go Rangers... RANGERS SUCK!" the drowning out of their chant with a "GO HOME RANGERS!" is much more effective.

Posted by: FFSEnough | February 5, 2009 8:58 AM | Report abuse

Section117,
Good work again fella. Seem's not everyone picks up on your gags. Not sure the chant that followed was Premier League worthly, where's the swearing??

boo,
Thanks for the Stanley Cup rings link on the previous thread.

IRTR,
I realise it wasn't you that started on the Pronger thing please let it go. You obviously like to research a topic but its not gonna happen.

Posted by: DaveUKCapsFan | February 5, 2009 8:58 AM | Report abuse

I mean 21-3-1...

Whats this I read about M.Green and the Norris Trophy?

I still can't believe a good chunk of people in here wanted to ship him out of town last summer.

Posted by: JSchon | February 5, 2009 9:00 AM | Report abuse

"Not sure the chant that followed was Premier League worthly, where's the swearing??"

I had plenty for Ken Lucas after the Merseyside Derby/FA replay, but that's another topic for another time.

Posted by: Section117 | February 5, 2009 9:01 AM | Report abuse

Some more of my favorite from my college days, unfortunately, doesn't work so well in the pro's... The team at my college, for the years I was there, had a very similar record to what the Caps have at home right now, so we were used to a lot of winning.

One two, one two and through and through, our vorpal blades went snicker-snack, we shot the puck at the little schmuck and knocked him on his back! HEY!

Near the end of the game, when it's all but been decided.

If losing team scores a meaningless goal:
"It just doesn't matter! It just doesn't matter!"

And, when close enough to call the game, having the entire crowd take out their keys, shaking them for noise and chanting "START THE BUS!" is very fun. Not as effective when the other team starts a "chartered jet..." Could use this for nearby teams that actually take a bus (philly, pitt?, NJD).

Posted by: FFSEnough | February 5, 2009 9:05 AM | Report abuse

@ irockthered

I agree he does take a few too many penalties, and his salary # would be a tough fit. There was a big discussion over on "Jaspers" about Pronger the other day.

If we traded Morrison to the Ducks and with CC on LTIR......we get closer. Not sure what the "pro-rated" hit would be if it happened at the deadline.

Right now there are major rumors that he will be dealt if the Ducks falter down the stretch.

Just imagine:

Pronger Green
Alzner Juice
Poti Schultz

or any combo you like

Erskine - reserve

I like it....

Posted by: Capsfannmiss | February 5, 2009 9:08 AM | Report abuse

I dunno if the rest of you have read Beninati's new blog, but for such a well-spoken sportscaster, he's not much of a writer... Oh well, I guess. Maybe it's just nerves for his first blog.

So we've got Theo and Newie, with Johnny, Vars, and Cheese all hurt? Good lord, who saw that coming?

I'd like to see Newie get a game in, while he's up, though, if possible. I saw him once in pre-season and thought he looked pretty good. I wonder if he's improved...

Posted by: DrinkingPartner | February 5, 2009 9:17 AM | Report abuse

Every time Ovie, Sasha, Greener, etc. juke someone we should let out an "Ole!!!"

I'm blind, I'm deaf, I want to be a ref!


Q)What's red and yellow and looks good on __opposing team's name here___ fans?

A)FIRE!!!

Posted by: griz0615 | February 5, 2009 9:24 AM | Report abuse

@DrinkingPartner: I was just thinking that, regarding Neuvirth. Just to see what he can do. He was apparently an ECHL All-Star and was doing well in Hershey once he adjusted.

Please not against the Panthers, though. Maybe against Colorado? What else do we have coming up?

I have to admit that I still want to see Stretch play in a Caps sweater. I realize it's farfetched and silly, but the stars seem to be aligning that way right now.

Here's to Johnny, Cheese, and Varlamov all getting better quickly!

Posted by: kittypawz | February 5, 2009 9:27 AM | Report abuse

And, when close enough to call the game, having the entire crowd take out their keys, shaking them for noise and chanting "START THE BUS!" is very fun.

I like this one - that's funny. :)

Posted by: kittypawz | February 5, 2009 9:31 AM | Report abuse

FFSE: Even if the visiting team has a charter, they still need to take a bus to the airport. That's a good one.

My favorites as a Caps fan not to a home game since 1996 (it's too cold up north) was chanting our goalie's name after a big save. I don't hear that one - you all should start it up again. Also, after Ovie scores, start the "M-V-P" chant. Just do it everytime he scores and it will really fire him up I'd think. Or chant "Ovie, Ovie," like Orioles fans in the day would chant "Eddie, Eddie" when Eddie Murray came up with ducks on the pond. Anytime you can chant a nickname, that's good. Finally, like with Boog Powell and Todd Heap, maybe there's a player whose name would lend itself to a chant.

Posted by: tominfl1 | February 5, 2009 9:33 AM | Report abuse

From BB himself, heard last night.... Clark is having surgery today and Johnson is also having surgery.

Posted by: atybat | February 5, 2009 9:34 AM | Report abuse

On the "O" is a Baltimore thing:

Back at Caps Center/USAir Arena, it was very clearly "O's!" not "O!". Before the very recent appearance of the Nats, and the idiocy of Peter Angelos, they were our team.

At my most recent trip to the Verizon Center, I was struck that it was now very clearly "O", and no longer "O's". Do people think they're yelling for Ovechkin now?

Posted by: theGelf | February 5, 2009 9:35 AM | Report abuse

And, when close enough to call the game, having the entire crowd take out their keys, shaking them for noise and chanting "START THE BUS!" is very fun.

lol love this one

Posted by: mauree | February 5, 2009 9:39 AM | Report abuse

@Capsfannmiss - Bottom line, I think, is that Prongs is too expensive for our blood. Plus, he wants to stay in California. I don't think we'll get him. It just won't fit under the cap.

@DaveUKCapsFan - Totally agreed! Pronger's too expensive. But if you'll look at my comment above, that's what I said this morning.

While I'd *LIKE* to have Pronger, I think the odds are about as good as the odds on my daughter starting in goal for the Stanley Cup finals this season.

Posted by: irockthered | February 5, 2009 9:40 AM | Report abuse

I really like this one...

..."chant" the goalie's actions. "DRINK DRINK DRINK DRINK..." "SKATE SKATE SKATE.... (before play starts) SQUAT!...... SQUEEZE!...... SUCK!"

My seats are right behind the visitor's penalty box. Any suggestions for some good heckles to throw at an opponent in the box?

Posted by: griz0615 | February 5, 2009 9:42 AM | Report abuse

Some people want to sign any big name that they hear or read on some NHL info site. The Caps are in a great position. They are still building for the future. The pieces are in place, they just need some seasoning. The team is obviously going to make the playoffs, should get pretty deep. Any success this season is a bonus for the experience of the players.

Sort of like last season when everyone wanted Brygl-whatever. If you were paying attention back then and haven't recently jumped on the bandwagon, you would understand the need for patience.

Now go back and talk about your silly chants.

Posted by: Leeguru | February 5, 2009 9:43 AM | Report abuse

I used to let the "O!" bother me. Now I just add the "vi!", as a courtesy to ign'ant displaced baseball fans.
3 points for Semin tonight, and another goal for Fehr. Caps win 5-3

Posted by: redlineblue | February 5, 2009 9:46 AM | Report abuse

That was a really good interview of Bruce on EITM. Thanks for posting. I always appreciated the enthusiasm Elliot has for Caps and Hockey and that he never shied away from sharing it with the public (even when the Caps were in the lower end of the valleys). Plus, the more I listen to any interview with Bruce, the more I love that guy! What a gem of a coach!

I do not know if this is effective, but I think it would be funny to hear a "Go to the box. Feel Shame" chant when an opposing player is called for a penalty.

Also, since the fans singing the "O" of the anthem most likely will never be quieted, I thought it was pretty kool a few years back when fans used to say "Olie" instead. Disrespectful or not, the intent and the fan enthusiasm was there, and it was more personalized. I am surprised that no one has kept that up with chanting "OV" or something like that.

Anyway, here is to hoping the Caps can play like they know they can, no matter if they are playing the top teams of the east or the lower teams of the west tonight!!!

Go Caps!

Posted by: The_Stanley_Caps | February 5, 2009 9:49 AM | Report abuse

@griz0615

Get a Piece of paper...Write "SHAME ON YOU!"

Press against the glass.

Posted by: SA-Town | February 5, 2009 9:53 AM | Report abuse

Worst 5 topics of conversation...

5. The Chants - We are now approaching 300. Its good to have any chants instead of crickets.

4. Quintan Laing - This one is for you wendel.

3. Chris Clark's groin, Pothier's head, someone else's thumb - This drove me nuts last season.

2. Verizon Center Ice - sigh..........

1. Any topic I think is important - M.Green, Komisarek, Kaberle, prayers, useless stats... Fehr being my boy, Alzner deserves a sweater, the Circus, Anchorman, live drafts...

Posted by: JSchon | February 5, 2009 9:54 AM | Report abuse

@atybat: Got a link?

Posted by: kittypawz | February 5, 2009 9:55 AM | Report abuse

@Leeguru and anyone else kvetching about Pronger talks -

In this particular case, I was throwing out hypothetical information, and I don't get why people can't just take a hypothetical discussion for what it is.

I'm extremely patient, and I am happy with the team we have. Would I like Chris Pronger to wear the red? Sure! Do I think it likely, or necessary? Did I once say I did? No. Au contraire, I have been saying I don't think it's possible.

My personal take on it is that the team is perfectly good just the way it is, although if the rumors about Johnson and hip surgery are true, we may need a Rent-a-Goalie for the playoff run.

Varlamov is also hurt, and while I like both him and Neuvirth, I don't believe either of them is up for carrying us all the way to the Cup. Not this season, at any rate.

You will note from my previous posts, however, that not once have I advocated trading ANYONE for ANYONE. In fact, I have many times mentioned that certain trades (*ahem*Nylander*ahem*) were highly unlikely.

@Capsfannmiss - Since people don't seem to want to read intelligent, theoretical discussions on here, and would rather read about silly chants, or argue the origins of the "O" in the National Anthnem, if you want to continue the Pronger chat, please e-mail me at irockthered {at} gmail {dot} com. I'll be happy to chat away there. :-)

Posted by: irockthered | February 5, 2009 9:55 AM | Report abuse

I know that standing quietly and acting respectfully for 2 - 3 minutes to demonstrate respect for our country is way too much to ask of most people these days, but it still makes me apoplectic every time people disrupt the Anthem.

I am looking forward to being present for Ovi's 200th goal tonight. I want to see him get it early and fire upthe team and crowd so this doesn't slip into a trap game.

Posted by: Baildog | February 5, 2009 10:00 AM | Report abuse

I agree that chanting at hockey games needs to be more family friendly. Thats the case over here to where songs are much cleaner than football.

Defo agree that chanting our goalies name after a big save works. "Theo, Theo, Theo" or "Johnny, Johnny, Johnny" or "Varly, Varly, Varly".

When the Caps are comfortably winning, one for opposing fans is:
"Long way for nothing, you came a long way for nothing"

Or if there are a number of opposing fans leaving early because they are losing:
"We can see you sneaking out!"

Or, if there is a team we have a particularly good record against (see Ottawa last season):
"Can we play you every week?"

Posted by: DaveUKCapsFan | February 5, 2009 10:07 AM | Report abuse

griz

the "It's All Your Fault" after a PP goal for us would work well here. Only one I have for when they're in the box is for hooking. "Where'd you learn to hook so well, from your _insert relative of choice here_?"

Most guys take a drink when they get in there... telling them that the water's not gonna make them suck less...

I kinda wish the "commercial" light was on the visitor's box, cause you could tell the guy in the box the light is the "you suck" light, on just for him.

Posted by: FFSEnough | February 5, 2009 10:08 AM | Report abuse

Hey I was just trying to get off the silly chant talk....

Maybe we can trade for Chara....that will solve all the worlds problems

Posted by: Capsfannmiss | February 5, 2009 10:12 AM | Report abuse

Chara and Timmonem. Those 2 give Ovi the most trouble.

I hear Jagr wants to come back to the states.

PAvel Bure? he's Russian!

Posted by: Leeguru | February 5, 2009 10:21 AM | Report abuse

@kittypawz

No sorry, I did not record the conversation. He also said that Kozlov should probably be back on Saturday.

Posted by: atybat | February 5, 2009 10:32 AM | Report abuse

I think I speak for most of us when I say...

New thread.

Posted by: Section117 | February 5, 2009 10:32 AM | Report abuse

FFSEnough-

I like the one about the water, and as you noted the red TV timeout light is in the home box.

I do yell "Down in front!!!!" when they stand up as the penalty is about to expire. That usually gets a chuckle from the people in my senction.

After a rumble with Brash, I'll ask the player sent to the box how it feels to get beat up on live TV.

Posted by: griz0615 | February 5, 2009 2:24 PM | Report abuse

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