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Neuvirth appears set to start tonight

One night after the Caps' season opening loss in Atlanta, it looks like goalie Michal Neuvirth will get his second straight start in tonight's home opener against the Devils.

"He played good," a grumpy Coach Bruce Boudreau said this morning. "Sometimes you play good and you don't get rewarded. Your save percentage looks crappy, your goals against looks crappy. But he held us in and made some really good saves."

Neuvirth overcame seeing his "good friend" and fellow countryman Ondrej Pavelec collapse less than three minutes into the game. He finished with 27 stops in a miscue-riddled 4-2 defeat.

I've got to imagine that Neuvirth will face workhorse Martin Brodeur tonight. Brodeur made 24 saves in the Devils' 4-3 loss to the Stars at Prudential Center last night.

By Tarik El-Bashir  | October 9, 2010; 10:33 AM ET
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Welcome back Tarik! We miss you!

Posted by: oviewanknows | October 9, 2010 10:57 AM | Report abuse

C'mon, Tarik. Don't duck the question. What happened with you and Neuvirth last season? Why did you this about him in June?

"there are a few question marks there in terms of attitude and work ethic, and a few things that, you know... I mean, there are some concerns there."

Posted by: tmac2yao | October 9, 2010 11:09 AM | Report abuse

You have to do more than wear a t-shirt that says your angry, they looked like prima-donna's. Although that first goal was a beauty, very prima donna like, it will not win in the playoffs. Get focused and get angry.

Posted by: tomdchancar | October 9, 2010 11:10 AM | Report abuse

Dress D.J King Kong and get this party started. I want to see someone who is not afraid t take it on the chin for his paycheck.

Posted by: SA-Town | October 9, 2010 11:16 AM | Report abuse

You'll see a lot of beauties when players get wide open shots from that part of the ice. Fleischmann is a non-center trying to play center. That was nothing short of a horrible giveaway.

He has good vision and passing skills. That's always been the case. He's good enough in those areas. The problem is everything else that it takes to be a good center at this level. He doesn't have the composure to make good decisions consistently in all 3 zones. He's always been a player that gets jittery at times, whether that's whiffing on pucks in front of the net or the kind of play you saw last night.

He also doesn't have the grit to handle the defensive side of the position. He'll look bad on a nightly basis trying to play in his own end. I'm not even worried about face-offs which is another area he'll likely always struggle in.

Flash is a wing with above average playmaking skills for that position but he does not have the two-way game to play center. You limit his defensive liabilities by keeping him outside.

He actually worked hard last night and aside from the great passing play on the 1st goal, he also worked as hard as he could in other areas. Having said that, he'll still get exposed over time. I doubt this experiment lasts more than 10 games or so.

Posted by: tmac2yao | October 9, 2010 11:22 AM | Report abuse

they looked mellow last night, OV & Backstrom didn't stand out, like normal.

Posted by: Hattrik | October 9, 2010 11:25 AM | Report abuse

Also, Backstrom is the most important player on this team and he probably isn't 100% right now. Once he gets back in form, we'll look better but we're still missing pieces that McPhee failed to address... again.

Once the Flash experiment fails, Johansson isn't ready to pay a 2C. He has the skillset for the position but not the physical maturity or the experience yet. I'm looking forward to his development but it's already enough of a challenge to handle 3C.

McPhee should pat himself on the back for sitting on his hands this summer when any other GM in his position would've been making changes.

Posted by: tmac2yao | October 9, 2010 11:27 AM | Report abuse

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