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Nylander set to play tonight

If you buy the excuse that the Caps were distracted the past two games by the approaching trade deadline, that means they'll get back to their winning ways tonight against Toronto, right?

Yesterday's dud of a deadline, of course, has come and gone and the Caps' dressing room was left (unimproved) but also undisturbed. A number of players this morning said they're taking that as a vote of confidence from management, especially in the aftermath of two ugly losses to lesser opponents the past two times out.

"It shows they are happy with our team," winger Matt Bradley said. "Now it's up to us to prove that it's the right team."

Eric Fehr added: "The trade deadline is tough on players because you just never know. It could have been that it was in the back of some guys' minds, and now we can get past it. We have a great group of guys in here, we really feel comfortable with each other and we know that we're capable of playing some good hockey."

Considering how poorly the Caps played in the back-to-back losses to the Panthers and Hurricanes, it might be a good thing they've got the Maple Leafs in town. The Leafs are going to start veteran waiver wire pick up Martin Gerber in goal, and yesterday they dumped Dominic Moore and Nik Antropov, all before making the weirdest deal of the day. In the seven games leading up to the deadline, though, they were playing pretty well (4-0-3).

Some other notes and quotes from this morning:

*While no one really knows if Brian Pothier is going to make it back to the NHL this season, Coach Bruce Boudreau made it sound like he's counting on the veteran defenseman to do just that. And then make an impact.

"He's been out an awful long time, but he's been practicing for two months," Boudreau said. "He's in a good a shape as he's been ever. He just needs game preparation. If he can come in and be what he was, he's going to be a valuable addition. That's as good a trade deadline move as we could have made."

*Asked if he is concerned that teams around the Caps seemed to get a little better yesterday, Boudreau said: "Well, yeah. But sometimes players get traded at the deadline and go and do nothing. It wrecks up the chemistry of the team. I don't know if that's going to happen. It's a crapshoot."

"I thought New Jersey was really good already, and I don't think that [Niclas] Havelid is going to make the great," he added. "I think Boston was great already. [Steve] Montador will probably go in where [Byron] Bitz was on the fourth line and [Mark] Recchi will probably bring good leadership. But it's not like Boston went and got Jay Bouwmeester."

*The line of the day, once again, went to Boudreau. Asked if the hockey fan in him was disappointed in the lack of a blockbuster deal, he shot back: "I'm a little sad some bigger names didn't go west."

*Michael Nylander, based on yesterday's practice, will return to the lineup tonight. He's been struggling, but the fact that he's getting a sweater -- right after missing four straight games leading up to the deadline - suggests to me that he was being withheld for fear of injury (just in case GM George McPhee found a taker).

That means a forward will come out. Boudreau, however, wouldn't say who that might be.

*And for those of you hoping for an alternate third jersey next season. I'm hearing it's not going to happen.

Check back later for a lineup.

By Tarik El-Bashir  |  March 5, 2009; 11:38 AM ET
 
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Next: Ovechkin not warming up

Comments

Nylander back in? umm WHY?

Posted by: maven1918 | March 5, 2009 11:51 AM | Report abuse

Cuz he's doesn't get paid to sit in the stands.

Posted by: CapManJ | March 5, 2009 11:52 AM | Report abuse

I seem to recall Nyls has a couple scratches earlier in the season. He seemed to come back and play well.
Let's hope he has a good game tonite.

Posted by: pmoravek | March 5, 2009 11:53 AM | Report abuse

Prove that he still has it, either for us or for whomever he may or play for next year.

Posted by: WhyGo | March 5, 2009 11:53 AM | Report abuse

from the previous thread:

phew, thanks for clearing that up whygo. I was worried I had done something wrong again.

Posted by: Leeguru | March 5, 2009 11:53 AM | Report abuse

At least Nylander has had plenty of rest...we will see what kind of heart he has now for the last part of the season or is he going to continue to sulk?

Posted by: lylewimbledon | March 5, 2009 11:54 AM | Report abuse

Tonight's game is kind of important for the Caps. If they lose, they may feel shaky facing the rising Pens this Sunday. So boys, forget about the two losses and crush the Leafs.

Posted by: fnralch | March 5, 2009 11:55 AM | Report abuse

I think its been stated before but the caps have a better record with Nyls in the lineup then without him.

That being said I do think his contract is hurting us in the long run.

Lets get a W tonight boys!

Posted by: Dizzy1205 | March 5, 2009 11:57 AM | Report abuse

From Previous Thread:

@ Caraveli

Where do you see our defense?? Just curious...

We all know BB's system hangs goalies out to dry, it's the way it works. Any goalie facing multiple breakaways and odd-man rushes every game is going to have skewed numbers... while I'll admit JT has been inconsistent this year, he, in no way, is our biggest problem!!

Huet played well to get us to the playoffs then got run over by a team that put traffic and pressure on him. He's not elite ... if he were, he'd have been #1 all year in Chicago instead of splitting time with Khabibulin.

Jeff Schultz, John Erskine, Shaone Morrissonn... these are not elite defenseman, they're barely passable. Mike Green scores alot, but his defensive play leaves much to be desired.

I, like everyone here, hopes for the best as we approach the playoffs and beyond, but to classify us "elite" ... nah... not a chance.

Posted by: Scofield | March 5, 2009 11:58 AM | Report abuse

Hopefully those last two games were all just deadline jitters and now they turn the heat up and start winning games as badly as they lost the last two.
So much to catch up on!
doncosmic/_stevo, My clubs are hand-me-downs and I don't get to play too often, but I do enjoy it. Now, good at it? Nah. :-D
Yay! Boo's back!
DaveUK, Now, about that Wilde quote. I guess that makes me a child, too.
Glad to hear that Ovi & Poti are both feeling good enough to play. Hope JT is feeling much better. I will definitely be rooting for Pothier. I'm also excited next week is Spring Break and I can watch games without class interference.

Posted by: jmu_capsgirl | March 5, 2009 11:58 AM | Report abuse

nyls will have 3 assists and a goal and all other GM's will ask for a do-over on the trade deadline...

Posted by: dcsportsfan1 | March 5, 2009 11:58 AM | Report abuse

we lost 3 of 4 without circles so bring him on

Posted by: _stevo | March 5, 2009 11:58 AM | Report abuse

#1 Nyls has not played on the 3rd line all year, he has played on the 1st line and he sucked there as well. It is not the line causing problems it is the system! He needs a sit back and wait kind of hockey and BB plays a take it to em style.
#2 What the heck did we see with Neuvirth that was bad? You mean the fact that if you hang him out to dry and give NHL forwards a chance to go one on one with him all game long he will let in goals? Well DUH!!!! Marty B is not so good because his team watches him stop pucks, they actually play defense.
#3 With the exception of Calgary, who may have grabbed a top tier player, the players traded yesterday were not worth bothering about. The Rags gave up three roster players for a reasonable d'man who may or may not be better than Mo, Schultz, or Juice, but in any case there are not three players I would give up for him unless they would have taken Nyls (who would not have gone), Brash, and Shultz/Mo. They got a better offer from the Rags and we did not lose anything to worry about.

Posted by: majiksea | March 5, 2009 12:00 PM | Report abuse

Nylander is rested and ready to go off tonight!

Posted by: SA-Town | March 5, 2009 12:00 PM | Report abuse

please let the third jersey NOT use the eagle on the shoulders as it's main catch. That's worse than the eagle featured on the previous jerseys (which weren't bad!). If I had my way, the third jersey would be the old road jersey (capitol dome), matching the current colors.

Posted by: fronesis1016 | March 5, 2009 12:01 PM | Report abuse

Having spent some time around Nyls in another setting, I know him to be an intense and prideful person. He is very unlikely that he will sulk, but I think instead he will have steam coming out of his arse and do his best to show everybody (teammates, administration, fans, family) that he is still an elite player.

Posted by: WhyGo | March 5, 2009 12:01 PM | Report abuse

I even think Nylander may drop the gloves tonight if he can find a willing dance partner.

Posted by: SA-Town | March 5, 2009 12:01 PM | Report abuse

1) Tarik: Any word from Brian Burke why he made such a bizarre "trade" of two players who will not play in the NHL again?

Posted by: fauxrumors | March 5, 2009 12:03 PM | Report abuse

Nylnader with a Gordie Howe FTW tonight.

Posted by: Dizzy1205 | March 5, 2009 12:04 PM | Report abuse

I'm both saddened and shocked that Brian Pothier has decided to risk his very life, by continuing to play hockey. To my way of thinking, that's as irresponsible as irresponsible can be. IS HE CRAZY?! Maybe the last concussion has deprived him of his common sense ( Which actually isn't so "Common," by the way. I wonder how his wife could agree to this ( assuming she has.) My goodness Brian, YOU'RE JEOPARDIZING YOUR LIFE, for christ's sake. Is playing a game THAT IMPORTANT to you? I guess the answer to that question is, "Yes, Puckguru." And, that's sad.

Posted by: Puckguru | March 5, 2009 12:04 PM | Report abuse

(from two posts back) I AGREE TOTALLY with you on Huet. He was the best goalie the Caps ever had

Posted by: caraveli | March 5, 2009 11:39 AM

I think that's a big stretch. What Huet was better than '98 Kolzig? Don't think so.

oo7 - I understand where you're coming from mate, just I think circumstances are waaaaay different this year to last.

As an aside can I say how good it is to see people saying "arse" inside of "ass". Makes the blog seem more English to me.

Posted by: DaveUKCapsFan | March 5, 2009 12:05 PM | Report abuse

@JSchon

We are an elite regular season team...yea, another SE Division championship.

We are a far cry from an elite playoff team with that defense.

I thought the Norris was given to the best defensemen...somehow it's turned into the best offensive-defensemen award. Green is a horrible defensemen...he should not be mentioned for a Norris until he can play in his own zone. The rest of them are scrubs.

Posted by: lylewimbledon | March 5, 2009 12:06 PM | Report abuse

sorry thats "Nylander"

Posted by: Dizzy1205 | March 5, 2009 12:07 PM | Report abuse

I predict a huge game tonight. Maybe a shutout for JT. I also agree that Nyls will shake out of this but i think he needs a chance to be the main man with Ovie, even though Backs is doing well with him. Nyls played well last year before injury with Ovie before Backs got the chance to do it. This was before BB however so I don't know.
Just a thought

Posted by: bigschu8 | March 5, 2009 12:08 PM | Report abuse

@Puckguru

He has been cleared thus can not collect insurance money. He has to make a living and unless he has paperwork that says he can not play anymore, he can not collect that fortune.

As for Nylander, he is not a sulker nor is he the kind of guy that is content collecting his fat paycheck. He is simply not that kind of guy. To say anything else is off the mark, and counter-productive. Anyone who has been around him can attest to that.

Posted by: atybat | March 5, 2009 12:09 PM | Report abuse

Semin has looked pretty good on those two stinkers games. I wonder if he was trying to prove something before the trade.

Posted by: guer_j | March 5, 2009 12:11 PM | Report abuse

Does anyone remember what the top line was last year before Nyls got hurt? Who played with him and Ovie?

Posted by: bigschu8 | March 5, 2009 12:13 PM | Report abuse

thank goodness. I don't think the Caps need a third jersey.

Is Pothier REALLY putting his life on the line? His doctors are been EXTREMELY conservative in allowing him to come back. I don't think they'd all the sudden say "Heck with it, the Caps need him back, so let's clear him!" They must be confident that he has fully recovered from his injury and that a possiblity of a setback is very small, AND that a standard NHL hit is not going to dislodge his brain and set it leaking out his ears and onto the ice.

Posted by: RedBirdie | March 5, 2009 12:14 PM | Report abuse

bigschu8,

Are you suggesting that Nyls takes Nick's spot as #1 center?

Dude......

Posted by: Steve_R | March 5, 2009 12:16 PM | Report abuse

@lyle

Last year we were a second away from beating a team that went to the Finals, and that was after playing like garbage in the first 4 games.

I'm not gonna say we are a far cry from an elite playoff team, and every coach, player and fan of the NHL besides you will probably say that.

In fact Vegas has us at 8-1 odds to WIN the cup, and only Boston, Detroit and San Jose have better odds.

So get on the Bangwagon, and get with the program, or take your attitude up to Philly...

Posted by: SA-Town | March 5, 2009 12:17 PM | Report abuse

Huet has NOT "shared time" with the Bulin wall, he has backed him up and not done that very well for most of the year.

Posted by: majiksea | March 5, 2009 12:23 PM | Report abuse

@SA

Way to go brother!

Posted by: RedRocker | March 5, 2009 12:26 PM | Report abuse

For Dave
Huet our best goalie, my arse!

Posted by: majiksea | March 5, 2009 12:27 PM | Report abuse

@SA-Town

No attitude here...while I agree with you...we also had a goalie that stood on his head for the last 3 months of the season-playoffs...he seems to be playing for a different team.

Posted by: lylewimbledon | March 5, 2009 12:28 PM | Report abuse

@ Steve

I am just throwing an idea out there. To get the best of your players, they need to be placed in situations where they can succeed. Backs is the best center on the team and earned his spot alongside Ovie. But could he still not be productive playing with Semin? Like i said, i am just throwing ideas out for discussion. I'm just saying that if [big if], Nyls could get back to the way he played early last season with Ovie, why not move Backs to play with Semin? But i dont know if Nyls can succeed on any line in BB's system.

Posted by: bigschu8 | March 5, 2009 12:29 PM | Report abuse

Fully agree about Neuvirth. Even under BB's system he was on his own far too much. Besides, that was his 3rd NHL game total.

Schultz/Mo/Jurcina are all young so the future's bright, but as of now it's a glaring weakness.

Think JT will be ok down the stretch - Detroit won it with twice with Osgood, another good but not stellar goaltender.

@DaveUK -- I live in England too...glad to see there are more caps fans here...

Posted by: guiliano89 | March 5, 2009 12:29 PM | Report abuse

lyle..oh lyle..

I do not think Huet was the reason that the series went to seven games last year. He was solid in my opinion, but didnt steal a game.

Look..I also think our D can improve, but Im not selling my playoff tickets over it. I actually think Theodore is playing much better, and he has more playoff experience then alot of the goalies around the league.

We just need to stay healthy and get out of this little funk, and I can assure you
we are an elite playoff team with the East Finals as a real possibility...everything else if gravy past that.

Posted by: SA-Town | March 5, 2009 12:32 PM | Report abuse

@caraveli:

You asked if the Caps ever had a Top 5 goaltender. Kolzig and Jim Carey both won Vezina trophies while in DC.

Don Beaupre went to the All-Star Game. Pete Peeters and Mike Liut weren't half bad and whoever was golaie for the first three years or so after Langway came over had to have had some gaudy stats.

I think Huet might make a Top 10 list for Caps goalies. I doubt Top 5.

Posted by: tominfl1 | March 5, 2009 12:33 PM | Report abuse

bigschu8,
I do remember the line of Semin, Backs, and I think Laich in the playoffs. They seemed to do well then, but I don't remember them being really great after that.

Posted by: jmu_capsgirl | March 5, 2009 12:34 PM | Report abuse

From what i remember in last years playoffs, the Caps didnt figure out what it takes to win in the playoffs until game 4. once they figured out the intensity required and how to play with a chip on their shoulder, they dominated the last half of that series. the game 7 loss was just the law of averages. this year they will be ready to play starting game 1.

Posted by: bigschu8 | March 5, 2009 12:35 PM | Report abuse

The problem with Nylander is the whole rest of the team is moving at warp (ovie) speed and Nylander is on impulse power. When Nylander gets the puck it's like your 45 record got switched over to 33 1/3.

Posted by: tominfl1 | March 5, 2009 12:38 PM | Report abuse

at tominfli1

i agree, he does not play at the same pace but he has a great ability of slowing down the play [it seems] and drawing a couple of defenders to him and then can dish the puck for scoring chances.

Posted by: bigschu8 | March 5, 2009 12:40 PM | Report abuse

SA-Town, oh SA-Town

LOL...we are all brothers here.

I pray everyday we win a Cup...it's up there with God, Family, Friends, Cup.

I hope Jose can get hot at the right time...he really needs to control his rebounds.

I still think we are missing some pieces, like grit, defense, and leadership...that being said I will always hope.

"Hope is a good thing, maybe the best of things, and no good thing ever dies." – Andy Dufresne

Posted by: lylewimbledon | March 5, 2009 12:41 PM | Report abuse

I like the term "bangwagon" and I'm on it.

This team, as a complete squad, it better and more experienced than last year's team. JT60 has not yet shown he can do what Huet did after his acquistion: steal a few games here and there. At this point last season we hadn't even seen Huet play and we are light years ahead of that point right now. This team is built as an offensive-minded team with that offensive pressure contributing to the defense's sucess by keeping teams on their heels - if the offense struggles, the defensive plan falls apart. That's why it's so glaring when players wander from the point, try to skate through 4 defenders at the blueline, and free lance too much. How many shutout have there been this season? One. This team is not going to win a bunch of 1-0 and 2-1 games and they aren't meant to: go watch a trapping team in New Jersey or Columbus if you want that. Like it or not, this team wins 4-3, 5-2, etc. and it's going to be like that as long as BB is the coach. I'm perfectly fine with the system even if I know that offensive laziness can lead to some beatdowns on occassion. I'll take our record against the top Eastern teams this year as support for the quality of the overall product. I think we'll see some movement in the off-season to strengthen the defense but they won't turn into any type of defensive oriented team even with a Pronger or JayBo.

We lost in OT in Game 7 last year to a very good Flyers team that was rolling come playoff time. How does that performance possibly lead anyone to think that it's indicative of what might happen this year. You know what? If we somehow met the Flyers in the first round (maybe they tumble to 6th or 7th) it's going to go 7 again and the Caps may be out. As it stands, I'll take the 5-8 teams in a seven-game series any day. I'll bet we lose at least one game in that series 6-1 but I think the Caps win the series, regardless. Think about it, even accounting for stumbles against bad teams, and great games against good teams, the Caps lost three games all of last month; five games all of January, and three games all of December. Now, without a trade, we're out in the first round? It could happen, but I doubt it.

Now, the second round? That's going to be something to see.

Posted by: saintex | March 5, 2009 12:43 PM | Report abuse

bigschu8,

Thanks for saying the "S" word ya idiot. Obviously you don't know much about hockey bc saying that on game day is about as dumb as saying Nylander should take Backie's spot on the first line....Oh.

I like this line up:

OV-Backs-Kozzy
Semin-Nyls/Feds-Laich
Flash-Feds/Nyls-Fehr
Brash-Steckel-Gordo/Brads

Posted by: numero94 | March 5, 2009 12:44 PM | Report abuse

So now that Nyls is here to stay [this season anyhow], he is not helping anyone by sitting in the pressbox. BB has got to find a way to get him going. As well, Nyls has to find a way to stay on the ice and help this team win

Posted by: bigschu8 | March 5, 2009 12:44 PM | Report abuse

very glad to see nyls get a jersey again. Hoping steks gets scratched.

Posted by: SovietSnipes | March 5, 2009 12:46 PM | Report abuse

bigschu,
As said in an earlier post, I think it should be:
Ovie/Feds/Kozzy
Laich/Nyls/Semin
Flash/Backs/Fehr

That spreads your scoring out and I think it puts Nyls in the best position to be successful with a sniper and a grinder.

Posted by: PhilR | March 5, 2009 12:50 PM | Report abuse

@ numero94

I am just trying to see what people think about how to get Nyls going. That was just one idea that i threw out there to get some discussion going. And i think most people here are taking it as that. Despite what some think, If the Caps are going to succeed deep into the playoffs, Nyls will need to part of it as is every player on this team. But there is no need to insult me. Grow up!

Posted by: bigschu8 | March 5, 2009 12:51 PM | Report abuse

@Lyle

See you at the rink...Dont forget Vegas has 8-1 odds on the Caps...Get that 401k back!

Posted by: SA-Town | March 5, 2009 12:51 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: Greg S. | March 5, 2009 12:52 PM | Report abuse

Not sure how many folks read Japers', but I thought this was really cool:
"While you're busy freaking out about the way the Caps have been playing of late, DMG drops a little knowledge that deserves a wider audience: 'Last season between February 7th and February 29th, the Detroit Red Wings were 1-8-2. The season before, Anaheim went 3-7-1 in late January and early February. In 05-06, Carolina went 1-3-3 in mid April.' I don't have to tell you what those three teams have in common."

Posted by: jmu_capsgirl | March 5, 2009 12:53 PM | Report abuse

and yes i did say the "S" word. I didn't realize the jinx is for the entire game day. My apologies JT. Go get one anyways.

Posted by: bigschu8 | March 5, 2009 12:54 PM | Report abuse

@bigschu8

you want to get him going? Put him on a line and leave him there. None of this bouncing all over the place crap.

Its hard enough for a center to gel with a line they are constantly on let alone when you are changed out every other game.

he needs the same line for the rest of the season and he would probably improve.

just my two cents

Posted by: Dizzy1205 | March 5, 2009 12:55 PM | Report abuse

@jmu

You can throw Philly in the mix too. The had an awful stretch of losing 10 straight last year and still made the EC finals.

Posted by: SA-Town | March 5, 2009 12:57 PM | Report abuse

It would help Nyls if he could win a face off now and then.

Posted by: Steve_R | March 5, 2009 12:58 PM | Report abuse

Dude, my 401k couldn't cover any bet.

Posted by: lylewimbledon | March 5, 2009 1:00 PM | Report abuse

Nyles needs to play well enough to stay in the lineup, just get his butt in gear! Scratching Steks is a great idea soviet! Now lets see the other team scores on every powerplay, so how many goals do we need?

Posted by: majiksea | March 5, 2009 1:00 PM | Report abuse

SA-Town, True as well. But they didn't win the Cup.

Posted by: jmu_capsgirl | March 5, 2009 1:02 PM | Report abuse

I've had enough of the Pothier Return!!! He was not that good before the concussion!!!!

Posted by: PWA_FCVA | March 5, 2009 1:02 PM | Report abuse

pothier was good before the concussion, not great but it would be a big upgrade to get him back

Posted by: _stevo | March 5, 2009 1:04 PM | Report abuse

@puckguru - The biggest problem that Pothier had, I think, was a misdiagnosis of what the actual post-concussion problem was. Once they figured out it was his eyes and an astigmatism (and not his inner ear), he got himself fixed up real quick. It was a matter of getting to the right specialist to find and fix the problem.

If you'd asked me six months ago if I thought he was nuts for coming back, I would have said yes. Now? Not so much. They've got his eyes retrained, he's not having the symptoms any more - and I'm pretty sure that the minute he does, he'll step away. He seems like a bright fellow, from what I've seen. He's not going to do something monumentally dumb.

Every hockey player who steps onto the ice knows he can suffer a debilitating injury at any second. Or he'd better know it. If Pothier and his doctors believe he's ready, and his family agrees with him that coming back is the right thing to do, then I will back him on that decision. What's right for him may not be right for another player, or for you...

But it is his decision.

Posted by: irockthered | March 5, 2009 1:04 PM | Report abuse

I'm calling 40+ shots, a dozen great scoring chances, and at least five goals for the Caps tonight.

Rejoice, rejoice.

@lyle, my 401K might buy a few shares of GM.

Posted by: saintex | March 5, 2009 1:05 PM | Report abuse

Yeah, i see line shuffling all the time all over the NHL. Unless a team clicks consistently, the lines juggle, thats seems to be a part of the game now and the players need to adjust.

And I agree that the Caps game is based more on a run and gun offense but come playoff time, the stronger defense usually goes farther.

Near the end of last season the Caps were giving up less than 2 goals a game down the stretch when they were playing for their playoff lives. This year they are not playing for the lives as they are in a great position. They will be ready come April.

Posted by: bigschu8 | March 5, 2009 1:06 PM | Report abuse

Nyles needs to quit whining, this is not Pittsburg and he is not Jagr, just play and play well.

Posted by: majiksea | March 5, 2009 1:06 PM | Report abuse

@Saintex

Ha...what's that going at nowadays? $.75?

Posted by: lylewimbledon | March 5, 2009 1:09 PM | Report abuse

majiksea, What has Stecks done on the PK lately?? He is as much to blame as any of the rest of them with giveaways and stupid penalties.....Killers could be Backs/Brads/Feds/Laich...sit Stecks and see if when he comes back he could maybe put a puck on goal on a breakaway!

Posted by: PhilR | March 5, 2009 1:11 PM | Report abuse

"you want to get him [Nyls] going? Put him on a line and leave him there. None of this bouncing all over the place crap." -Dizzy1205
Your two cents on this matter are worth more than all the other crap that has been posted about nyls combined.

Posted by: opita1 | March 5, 2009 1:11 PM | Report abuse

saintex

Wow! I'm impressed! I think my 401k will get me a box of Rice Crispies. One of the small ones. You know, the one serving sized ones.

Posted by: Greg S. | March 5, 2009 1:12 PM | Report abuse

"Nyles needs to quit whining, this is not Pittsburg and he is not Jagr, just play and play well.

Posted by: majiksea "

I haven't heard Nyles whine, but I have read you whinning.

Posted by: opita1 | March 5, 2009 1:15 PM | Report abuse

Well, nothing like a 5-0 tonight to wash down the bitterness. Well, that and a victory on Sunday :D

Posted by: mauree | March 5, 2009 1:15 PM | Report abuse

@greg s.

Love those little boxes! You used to be able to open them up on their sides and pour milk into the waxed paper cavern...can you still do that? Fortunately, I have my military retirement that's pretty fool proof...thank goodness.

Posted by: saintex | March 5, 2009 1:16 PM | Report abuse

nyls has hardly any strength to his shot and his passes are now off the mark, since his shoulder surgery. seriously, what does that tell you?

Posted by: oo7 | March 5, 2009 1:18 PM | Report abuse

I think the Caps make a statement tonight that they can win with this team and i feel sorry for the Leafs who dumped at the deadline. Get your Caps in your fantasy lineups tonight!

Posted by: bigschu8 | March 5, 2009 1:19 PM | Report abuse

I've never heard Nyls whining either. He is a true pro. Some thing don't go well, but I am glad that he was benched because of the trade possibility. I think Boudreau is a fair man, maybe he didn't follow with Nyls much, but if Nyls will improve, he will have more time and and more chances.

Prove?

When Nyls scored 2 goals he was put on the first line.

Like Tarik said yesterday, Nyls was good with Jagr because they both were making circle, and then, boom, got connected and Jagr would score.

How about Nyls centering Kozlov?

BB needs to try, maybe it will work like with Jagr - Nyls in NY. :-)

Posted by: CodePoetry | March 5, 2009 1:20 PM | Report abuse

Well, nothing like a 5-0 tonight to wash down the bitterness. Well, that and a victory on Sunday :D

Posted by: mauree | March 5, 2009 1:15 PM

LOL. I was just thinking that, then I came out of my trance. Some people are only happy when they b!tch.

Posted by: opita1 | March 5, 2009 1:21 PM | Report abuse

I'm not too keen on the Weagle. I dont want to see a giant weagle crest on a 3rd jersey at all.

I do however like those blue player T Shirts. I think out current logo looks good on them, but I know we'll move away from it ona 3rd jersey. Maybe something similar to the Capital Dome on the old black jerseys. Bur re-done. And in red, white, and blue on a blue sweater. know what I mean?

Posted by: griz0615 | March 5, 2009 1:21 PM | Report abuse

If BB would give Nyls more ice time, he can peak by playoffs. At his best he can give a lot of headache to another team. He is different than a lot of other forwards and that's good, harder to solve Caps offense.

The [big] question is: "Who would you sit?"

Posted by: CodePoetry | March 5, 2009 1:25 PM | Report abuse

Third jersey idea...red wt and blue with picture of Don cherry on his knees in front of Crosby?

Posted by: lylewimbledon | March 5, 2009 1:26 PM | Report abuse

@ fronesis1016

The Eagle on the old uniforms looked like the post office or something. Every time I see one of those white jerseys with the eagle on it I run to the mailbox.

Posted by: griz0615 | March 5, 2009 1:26 PM | Report abuse

saintex

Last year I started a consulting firm. That and being an adjunct teacher somewhere is my "retirement" plan. The phrase, "I got nothin'" applies to my 401K. I'll work 'till I drop. Fortunately, I like what I do.

Posted by: Greg S. | March 5, 2009 1:28 PM | Report abuse

Although I'm sure Crosby would cry and complain about that too!

Posted by: lylewimbledon | March 5, 2009 1:28 PM | Report abuse

@ lylewimbledon

LOL!!! As long as there is room for Mike Milbury and a reach around.

Posted by: griz0615 | March 5, 2009 1:29 PM | Report abuse

very witty Opita, vey witty indeed

Posted by: majiksea | March 5, 2009 1:30 PM | Report abuse

Third jersey idea...red wt and blue w/ Russian Imperial Double-Headed Eagle... Ovie will like that. :-)

Posted by: CodePoetry | March 5, 2009 1:30 PM | Report abuse

@Griz

with the "Crapitals" on the front!

Posted by: lylewimbledon | March 5, 2009 1:33 PM | Report abuse

@ griz:

I know, everyone always says that! I must be alone then. Maybe it just reminds me of the 98 cup run, which is some of the best hockey i've ever seen. Ahh, Pivonka, Bondra, Johannson, Juneau...Berube...

You have to admit that it's better than that "weagle" thing. That thing looks like a first grader's show and tell project. Not intimidating in the least.

Posted by: fronesis1016 | March 5, 2009 1:33 PM | Report abuse

Talk about a logjam in Hershey. Courtesy of pennlive.com:

Lines:
Giroux-Aucoin-Mink
Bouchard-Wilson-Gordon
Bourque-Perreault-Pinizzotto
Osala-Beagle-G. McNeill
Brennan-Joudrey-Reid

D-pairs:
Sloan-Helmer
Alzner-Lepisto
Kronwall-Pothier
P. McNeill-Collins
Amadio-Arsene

Posted by: stormblue | March 5, 2009 1:34 PM | Report abuse

@Ted Leonsis

Dear Mr. Ted:
Have you read the recent comments two of your employees made in the press? I ain't gona tell ya how to run your team but here they is:

“We'd like to be a good team for a number of years and be knocking on the door every year rather than load up and make a run and then be scrambling for a couple of years,” McPhee said.

Boudreau said: "Well, yeah. But sometimes players get traded at the deadline and go and do nothing. It wrecks up the chemistry of the team. I don't know if that's going to happen. It's a crapshoot."

No never mind where I got'em. I think it is a disgrace and a diservice to yur fans that'em people with them menatlity still run our beloved CApitals. Please, please, please stop by Mr. Tarik's blog and git yurself some good honest American people to run yur team, them appear to be many of 'em in that there blog.

sinsrly,

Posted by: opita1 | March 5, 2009 1:35 PM | Report abuse

Steckel is not so great on the PK, he has reach, but he is pretty slow. It's not a big loss. Steckel, Gordon, Laich, Flash, Semin, Backstrom, Fedorov -- they are all similar-level PKers.

I think in the past Nylander had shown some chemistry with Kozlov and Flash. At the same time, while Kozlov has been the 1st line glue in the reg. season, I think he is too slow for playoff hockey, just like last year's series vs. Philthy demonstrated.

With that, I would want to see the Caps try to play the following lineup for a few games:

Ovechkin-Backstrom-Fehr
Semin-Fedorov-Laich
(or some recombinations of the above)
Flash-Nylander-Kozlov

Yeah, Fehr hasn't been great in limited stints on the top line, and yeah, Laich has dropped the ball in the last few games skating on a scoring line, but I suspect the only way we'll get something out of Nylander, while retaining two other good lines, will be to put him with Kozlov and Flash.

Bottom line is, if Nylander continues to be deadweight, that's roughly 10% of our cap, so we're going into playoffs in some sense 10% handicapped, in every game. If against some opponent, your odds are generally 1/1, but you're at 10% reduced strength, now you have only 45% chance of winning each game, so overall the odds of winning a best-of-7 series drop to 3/2. And if takes 4 such series to win the Cup, your odds go from 16/1 to 40/1, more than twice as bad.

That's what 5M of deadwood can do to a team.. Getting Nylander to perform will probably be the single greatest factor in Caps' postseason success.. well, as long as goaltending does not completely fall apart, knock on wood..

Posted by: VladG | March 5, 2009 1:36 PM | Report abuse

They should just go old school throwbacks for the 3rd jersey

Posted by: Dizzy1205 | March 5, 2009 1:36 PM | Report abuse

> Post-Gazzete: Penguins center Sidney Crosby will play tonight against the Florida Panthers after missing 4 games because of a sore left groin.

I like the detail: sore left nut, not the right one

Unlike WaPO: lower body injury :-)


So Pens went 5-0 w/o Crosby, it would be hilarious if they lose tonight.

Posted by: CodePoetry | March 5, 2009 1:36 PM | Report abuse

@irockthered... You're absolutely right. I played for several years and suffered countless breaks, cuts, bruises, etc (thankfully have all my teeth, most have been loosened though). I knew everytime I stepped on the ice there was a chance of severe injury.

Posted by: FLDave | March 5, 2009 1:41 PM | Report abuse

@tominfl1

funny on Nyls. Where can they play this guy? He's an offensive center on a team that enough of them. He was not at all effective on the wing with Ovie and Backs.

Glad to see no moves by GMGM. We kept Carlsson, Varlamov, Alzner and that works for me...

Posted by: WritingLight | March 5, 2009 1:42 PM | Report abuse

VladG: couldn't have said it better. Do the Caps have options to send Nylander to the Bears for conditioning? Other than the fact that that would light a fire under any 36 year old european, it would also allow more roster space. Just throwin that out there...

Posted by: fronesis1016 | March 5, 2009 1:44 PM | Report abuse

NMC means NMC, up OR down OR away

Posted by: WhyGo | March 5, 2009 1:49 PM | Report abuse

I'm with dizzy. If there's a third jersey it should simply be the old sweater - and not the blue "old" sweater - the Lanway old sweater. That would be sweet.

Posted by: saintex | March 5, 2009 1:53 PM | Report abuse

The Weagle is beat. I guess it's ok on the shoulder, but a 16 inch Weagle across the chest would be awful.

Anyone know where to buy an authentic old school (Langway era) jersey? The one where all of the letters in "Capitals" are individually sewen on, not the one where the team name is contained in a patch. You know... authentic old school.

Posted by: griz0615 | March 5, 2009 2:02 PM | Report abuse

@VladG

It's actually 9/19 = 47%.

Posted by: fnralch | March 5, 2009 2:03 PM | Report abuse

Random factoid...caps are 36-16-5 with nylander in the lineup, scoring 3.40 goals per game in those 57 games. Without him, they are 4-4-0 and score 2.63 GPG.

Posted by: GusDaMan | March 5, 2009 2:10 PM | Report abuse

@gus

Good stat. I think we all agree that Nylander is the team MVP. I expect a big game from him tonight. He is rested and ready.

Posted by: SA-Town | March 5, 2009 2:12 PM | Report abuse

@ CodePoetry

Go Panthers. (Jeez, that was painful. Less painful than go Pens- puke)

I can't decide if its better for the Pens to miss the playoffs or for us to eliminate them in the 1st round. Thoughts?

On one hand the miss and its an embarassment. On the other hand revenge!!!

Posted by: griz0615 | March 5, 2009 2:15 PM | Report abuse

"With that, I would want to see the Caps try to play the following lineup for a few games:

Ovechkin-Backstrom-Fehr
Semin-Fedorov-Laich
(or some recombinations of the above)
Flash-Nylander-Kozlov"

What I'm noticing here is the complete lack of a good, old-fashioned 3rd (checking) line. Like we used to have with Kelly Miller and Ridley. In the playoffs, you need a line to go against the other team's top line. The "Energy" line with Brash and Brads ain't a checking line.

The best three defensive forwards in that bunch, until Clark returns, would be Laich, Federov and Kozlov. OK - make them a line and you have a checking line (Feds also plays on PP).

The other six guys you mix and match. Ovie and Flash are pure LWs. Ovie doesn't play so well with Nyles, so put Ovie-Backie and Flash-Nyles. The only question then is which gets Semin and which gets Fehr, and I think that's secondary to actually establishing a checking line.

Posted by: tominfl1 | March 5, 2009 2:15 PM | Report abuse

Jiminy crickets, I spelled Fedorov wrong.

Also, if it appears I was being critical of that poster's line combos, I wasn't, I was just trying to interject the checking line idea.

Posted by: tominfl1 | March 5, 2009 2:18 PM | Report abuse

Lines should be:

8/92/25 (if anyone can get Nyls goin it's Ovie)
21/91/28
16/19/14 (i thought they played well together when they had the opportunity)
87/15/39/10

With this line up we could have 3 serious scoring threat lines

Posted by: CapManJ | March 5, 2009 2:18 PM | Report abuse

@griz

I want the penguins in the first round...it would be too much fun!

Posted by: lylewimbledon | March 5, 2009 2:20 PM | Report abuse

From the "wishing thinking/moot point" department:

Does anyone besides me think that if a certain back up goalie for Tampa Bay hadn't injuried his arm this year (and Mike Smith had stayed healthy) that he would be dressing in a red jersey with his old #37 tonight? It would have done two very important things -- given Jose a strong back up for the rest of the year, and most importantly, some badly needed locker room leadership.

Like I said, wishful thinking, moot point. Olie deserved better then what he got, but that's an old story.

Posted by: bucknelldad | March 5, 2009 2:24 PM | Report abuse

In bed with a nasty flu watching Three's Company marathon. The bacchanalian settings of a Santa Monica apartment peppered with equivocal mixed-ups, and perennial happy ending.

Posted by: mauree | March 5, 2009 2:26 PM | Report abuse

The third jersey is obvious -- switch places between the "Capitals" logo with the eagle. That would be cool.

Second option -- go retro. Seems to work for other teams. Heck, the Flyers began winning when they donned their old Broad Street Bully look. Not that much difference between then and now, anyway.

Posted by: bucknelldad | March 5, 2009 2:28 PM | Report abuse

Jack Tripper was my idol growing up.

Posted by: CapManJ | March 5, 2009 2:28 PM | Report abuse

@fnralch:

Heh, you're right, 9/19 it is.

So then it appears the super-rough chances of winning the SC go from 1/16th to 1/26th (not 1/40th), when your team's "strength" is reduced by 10%. Still, almost twice as bad.

Posted by: VladG | March 5, 2009 2:29 PM | Report abuse

Points to the one who referenced kelly miller...man could play the PK. Think I might be the only person to walk into verizon still rockin' the old #10. The caps could have used a couple of modern day versions (travis moen or sammy pahlsson) both of whom went for not that much yesterday.

Posted by: stillmisskellymiller | March 5, 2009 2:32 PM | Report abuse

retro: navy jersey with Washington spelled across the front. much more classic than weagle

Posted by: capsfan7 | March 5, 2009 2:33 PM | Report abuse

Griz you can get the old school jersey with individual lettering on EBAY

Posted by: majiksea | March 5, 2009 2:34 PM | Report abuse

> DC SPORTS BOG: /off high horse, into meeting about the future of The Washington Post that will ruin much of the rest of the afternoon

Tarik, Can Ovechkin save WaPo? :-|

Posted by: CodePoetry | March 5, 2009 2:36 PM | Report abuse

I'll comment on the third jersey. As a newbie and thus reducing the weight of my opinion, I need to pass on resurrecting any of the old school sweater designs. I think something could be done with the Weagle, maybe bring down the wings and circle around the Capitol dome. Make the Weagle in white, navy blue jersey.

I'm going to also stay positive about Nylander getting to play tonight. I would imagine he doesn't want to s*ck on the ice and tries to make the most of the situation. Here's hoping he reminds his fans of the great hockey player he is and prove to all the naysayers that he's got a few tricks left up his sleeve. Go for it, Nylander!

Let's Go Caps!

Posted by: LeftCoastCapsFan | March 5, 2009 2:40 PM | Report abuse

@tominfl1:

I think it doesn't make sense to run a "checking" line if you have 3 offensive centers in the 4M+ range. If Nylander showed chemistry with AO or Semin, I could maybe see building a checking line around Fedorov.. but that's not the case.

Right now, Caps play best when Backstrom/Feds are with Ovechkin/Semin. If the 3rd line is a checking line to use against top lines, might as well sit Nylander, I think Steckel is much more effective in that role.. but then you again have 5M on the bench.

@CapManJ: 8-92-25? Nobody to retrieve the puck, and nobody can keep up with 8.. I don't think it would work.. but hey, now is the time to try.

Posted by: VladG | March 5, 2009 2:41 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: CodePoetry | March 5, 2009 2:42 PM | Report abuse

I'm afraid of what Reebok may do with a weagle 3rd jersey. They seem to love putting numbers on the front which I disagree with and the weagle looks ripe for a "there some extra space here, let's put a number there" conversation.

Add some stars to the sides of those pants and it's all good.

Posted by: koalatek | March 5, 2009 2:49 PM | Report abuse

so clearly there was never any issue with poti's groin. he was sat last game because he was a trade candidate. think GMGM was hoping for a straight-up pronger-for-poti deal?

what's the deal, tarik?

Posted by: ovyscaps | March 5, 2009 2:51 PM | Report abuse

@VladG

Luv the numbers, ratios and odds, but the only flaw is the roster is expanded for the playoffs without th esalary cap restrictions. So Nylander couldn't be considered "dead weight' for the Playoffs.

Posted by: boomer44 | March 5, 2009 2:53 PM | Report abuse

Where do you see our defense?? Just curious...

We all know BB's system hangs goalies out to dry, it's the way it works. Any goalie facing multiple breakaways and odd-man rushes every game is going to have skewed numbers... while I'll admit JT has been inconsistent this year, he, in no way, is our biggest problem!!


Scofield

It does. Thats exactly the way it works. Its not intended to hang the goalies out to dry, its intended to score goals at any cost. Hence the breakaways, the multiple odd man rushes, the numerous shorthanded chances against us.

In my entire life I have yet to witness this kind of philosophy work at the NHL or any other level. There has got to be a better balance of defense to offense. I know cap fans are in heaven because we have a great record right now but there are serious issues with the way Boudreau manages this team and his philosophies. Our playoff opponent will have a field day on offense against us. And having to run around in your zone will wear out your defense pretty quickly and make it hard to break out clean for offensive chances.

Posted by: cstanton1 | March 5, 2009 2:53 PM | Report abuse

"you want to get him [Nyls] going? Put him on a line and leave him there. None of this bouncing all over the place crap." -Dizzy1205
Your two cents on this matter are worth more than all the other crap that has been posted about nyls combined.


Posted by: opita1 | March 5, 2009 1:11 PM


Thats a joke right Opita? The only reason Nylander gets bounced around is he is unable to be effective for more than a short spurt. If he was consistent he'd be left alone. He has games where he's downright awful. Do you see Brooks Laich have awful game after awful game? No, and he bounces around more than Nyles. Terrible excuse for a player who is clearly on his downswing which is why we were trying to dump him and his bloated salary.

Posted by: cstanton1 | March 5, 2009 2:59 PM | Report abuse

Repost from Mike Vogel's analysis of our non-moves:

Very good, intelligent analysis unlike all the hysterical whining on the Caps Insider blog. Agree 100%.

However, I would've liked us to get someone like Clemmenson from NJ who was very much available. Theodore hasn't convinced me at all. Yes, he's played better since Dec, but better meaning that he's been better than terrible, which is what he was before Dec. That's still not good enough.

Some people being already down on Neuvy just proves my point about people not using their brains. The guy has really only allowed 1 bad goal so far in all of his time on the ice and he's a 20-year old rookie.

Sucks for Varly to be down with injury now as it would have been a perfect time for him to get more NHL action. I believe in him because I watched him have a great season in the RSL last year at just 19. He was the starting goalie for Lokomotiv Yaroslavl and led them to one of the best regular season records followed by a great playoff run which saw them lose only to power house Salavat Yulayev Ufa in the final. Varlamov was spectacular and the Russian League is the 2nd best league in the world, somewhere between the AHL and the NHL, IMO.

Posted by: ranndino | March 5, 2009 3:00 PM | Report abuse

@cstanton1

Were you born yet during the Gretzty, Messier, Kurri, Coffey Fuhr years during the 80's?

Posted by: boomer44 | March 5, 2009 3:01 PM | Report abuse

Man I wished the NHL never banned Cooperalls. I would love to see the Flyers in the Full length pants version of them again if only for the comedic value.

Posted by: Dizzy1205 | March 5, 2009 3:01 PM | Report abuse

I think Nyls is going to turn it around.

Posted by: _828 | March 5, 2009 3:01 PM | Report abuse

cstanton1,

Why are you even a fan? why do you bit ch so much? You sound like a girl (no offense ladies).

Who doesn't think this team needs work? Detroit won the stanley cup last year and they need work...

Your just a whinner and I am glad I don't have your life. Do you beat your kids if they don't eat all of their vegetables?

Posted by: _828 | March 5, 2009 3:04 PM | Report abuse

poti isnt worth half a pronger.

Posted by: richmondphil | March 5, 2009 3:05 PM | Report abuse

And you know what - the Caps have 30+ days to work on all of their "issues". Stop pissing in the wind man, you are getting it all over your outfit.

Posted by: _828 | March 5, 2009 3:06 PM | Report abuse

@cstanton1

Were you born yet during the Gretzty, Messier, Kurri, Coffey Fuhr years during the 80's?

Posted by: boomer44 | March 5, 2009 3:01 PM


yep. And I watched those teams play. And if you are trying to make the comparison between the current Caps and that Oilers dynasty there is none. That Oilers dynasty had a very very very solid defense. Their worst defensive defenseman was Craig Muni who is better than any of our defensive defensemen. They had 5 guys who played great defense and one guy in Coffey who did not. If you don't remember that I have to question (respectfully) whether YOU were born in that period of time.

Posted by: cstanton1 | March 5, 2009 3:07 PM | Report abuse

After what was a pretty lame Trade Deadline all around the NHL this is clear..

1) The Salary Cap is working...75% of the season is done, and only 8 of 30 teams are really "Out of it."

2) The 2 for a win, and 1 for an OT loss system drives me nuts, but it does help the above point by giving teams a chance to compete longer into the season.

Posted by: SA-Town | March 5, 2009 3:07 PM | Report abuse

Agreed, I'm behind Nyls and behind Theo all the way. I'm excited for tonight and excited for the rest of the year. All I have to do is think about watching the games a few years back and it makes thinks very humbling and positive. Be proud and stand behind our boys. Silly season is over.

Posted by: cappies | March 5, 2009 3:07 PM | Report abuse

Your just a whinner and I am glad I don't have your life. Do you beat your kids if they don't eat all of their vegetables?

Posted by: _828 | March 5, 2009 3:04 PM


And you sound like someone who only makes superficial comments because you lack the knowledge to discuss anything in depth or detail. So really, you don't bother me taht much, but you are a tad annoying.

Posted by: cstanton1 | March 5, 2009 3:08 PM | Report abuse

what caps dynasty?

Posted by: richmondphil | March 5, 2009 3:08 PM | Report abuse

BTW, the crazy deal Kolzig was involved in yesterday proves once again that he should have retired last year as a Cap. That would have been dignified and worthy of his great career. This season has been a total embarrassment for him. Sometimes you really need to know when to hang them up for good.

Posted by: ranndino | March 5, 2009 3:08 PM | Report abuse

@cstanton1

Do you play? I only ask because you for some reason you dont think bouncing around the lineup as a playmaker matters all that much.

Laich isnt even in the same league as Nyls is as a playmaker and I am sure he would agree with me on that.

You talk of knowledge you have but I have to ask.. is this the knowledge of a fan or the knowledge of a person how has actually laced up the skates and played? Im not saying you havent im just asking if you have.

Posted by: Dizzy1205 | March 5, 2009 3:11 PM | Report abuse

And you sound like someone who only makes superficial comments because you lack the knowledge to discuss anything in depth or detail. So really, you don't bother me taht much, but you are a tad annoying.

What do I need to talk about in depth? Who's the one that is annoying - someone who bashes the team and the mangagement constantly... u serious?

People have tried to use logic with you but you don't understand. People try to have hope and actually believe in their team... and yet, you don't understand that. superficial comments - man, that was a legit question. If you get worked up over a Caps team that is doing pretty darn good right now... then you may have some issues.

Posted by: _828 | March 5, 2009 3:12 PM | Report abuse

I heard OVIE IS OUT TONIGHT??

Anyone else just hear that?

Posted by: DCSPORTS | March 5, 2009 3:12 PM | Report abuse

"While you're busy freaking out about the way the Caps have been playing of late, DMG drops a little knowledge that deserves a wider audience: "Last season between February 7th and February 29th, the Detroit Red Wings were 1-8-2. The season before, Anaheim went 3-7-1 in late January and early February. In 05-06, Carolina went 1-3-3 in mid April." I don't have to tell you what those three teams have in common"

From Japers Rink. A little February stumble does not a crisis make.

Posted by: SombreroGuy | March 5, 2009 3:13 PM | Report abuse

@ cstanton1

"In my entire life I have yet to witness this kind of philosophy work at the NHL or any other level. There has got to be a better balance of defense to offense".

I'll give you a very concise, logical and substantial answer that you supposedly crave. Check Boudreau's AHL and NHL records. They speak for themselves.

The one who doesn't substantiate claims and talks mostly out of his behind on here is you.

Posted by: ranndino | March 5, 2009 3:14 PM | Report abuse

SombreroGuy,
Seriously - did you have to go get facts? What's up with the rational thoughts? I don't think people will understand that.

Posted by: _828 | March 5, 2009 3:15 PM | Report abuse

"While you're busy freaking out about the way the Caps have been playing of late, DMG drops a little knowledge that deserves a wider audience: "Last season between February 7th and February 29th, the Detroit Red Wings were 1-8-2. The season before, Anaheim went 3-7-1 in late January and early February. In 05-06, Carolina went 1-3-3 in mid April." I don't have to tell you what those three teams have in common"

From Japers Rink. A little February stumble does not a crisis make.

Posted by: SombreroGuy | March 5, 2009 3:13 PM

logic is too kryptonite, as caps insider blog posters are too superman.

Posted by: richmondphil | March 5, 2009 3:19 PM | Report abuse

Not trying to rabble-rouse here, but a story was related to me by a friend who attended yesterday's practice at KCI and witnessed Ovechkin's injury:

"...Ovie got into it with Nylander about Nyls not waiving his no trade clause, so Nyls shot a puck at Ovie & hit him in the foot. Ovie left practice early, but not before taking a shot back at Nyls in the hall..."

I know the official version has Ovechkin being hit by an inadvertant slapper from coach Dean Evason, but the fact that he was so terse and seemingly surly when asked about the incident might lend a bit of creedence to the eyewitness account quoted above. Again, not trying to stir the pot, just sayin'...

Should be an interesting run to the playoffs. Let's go Caps!

Posted by: MetalCapsFan | March 5, 2009 3:20 PM | Report abuse

@boomer44:

You have point to some extent, i.e. Hershey players, but the effect is still there. For example, Devils got Havelid and Pens got Guerin. The Caps could've fairly easily got them, but did not have any cap space. Why? Nylander's 5M cap hit, whether we call it "deadweight" or something else..

So now if Caps have to face Pens and then Devils in playoffs, how much better would their chances be if these players played for them instead of against them? Whatever the difference is, it can be traced to Nylander..

Btw, not trying to make Nylander the scapegoat for any possible failure.. just reinforcing the obvious point that if Caps could find a way to make Nylander productive, it would indeed be a huge boost to the team.

Posted by: VladG | March 5, 2009 3:21 PM | Report abuse

@ cstanton1

Just to follow up on my last post and to help you out:

Under Boudreau's leadership, the Bears won the 2006 American Hockey League Calder Cup championship. The Bears made it all the way back to the Calder Cup finals under Coach Boudreau again in 2007, ultimately falling to the Hamilton Bulldogs.

Previously, Boudreau coached the Mississippi Sea Wolves to the ECHL Championship in 1999, and also led the Fort Wayne Komets to the IHL Finals in 1994. Boudreau was awarded the Commissioner's Trophy (IHL) as coach of the 1993-94 Fort Wayne Komets.

Boudreau was named interim head coach of the NHL's Washington Capitals on November 22, 2007, and later their permanent coach on December 26. He compiled a 37–17–7 rookie coaching record with a team that was 6–14–1 when he inherited it. Under Boudreau's leadership, the 2007–08 Capitals won their first Southeast Division title in seven years and made the playoffs for the first time in five years. He won the Jack Adams Award as the NHL's best coach in 2008.

Added by me: Currently, the Caps record this season is 40-20-5.

So it's possible that you haven't seen his style of play work in your lifetime, but it seems that's more because you've spent your whole life in a delusional bubble completely detached from reality.

Posted by: ranndino | March 5, 2009 3:21 PM | Report abuse

Just to ask everyone and get some feedback, who would be the top 7 defensemen you would take in the playoffs... I believe this is mine.

Mo-Greenie
Alzner-Poti
Juice-Pothier
Erskine

and if Pothier can't come back

Mo-Greenie
Schultz-Poti
Alzner-Juice
Erskine

Posted by: numero94 | March 5, 2009 3:22 PM | Report abuse

Im all for jokes on the board, but posting you heard Ovie is out with no other facts is just stupid.

Some of us paid money to go tonight, so back it up with a source please.

Posted by: SA-Town | March 5, 2009 3:22 PM | Report abuse

Not trying to rabble-rouse here, but a story was related to me by a friend who attended yesterday's practice at KCI and witnessed Ovechkin's injury:

"...Ovie got into it with Nylander about Nyls not waiving his no trade clause, so Nyls shot a puck at Ovie & hit him in the foot. Ovie left practice early, but not before taking a shot back at Nyls in the hall..."

I know the official version has Ovechkin being hit by an inadvertant slapper from coach Dean Evason, but the fact that he was so terse and seemingly surly when asked about the incident might lend a bit of creedence to the eyewitness account quoted above. Again, not trying to stir the pot, just sayin'...

id like to hear this from more than just "a friend of a friend."

Posted by: richmondphil | March 5, 2009 3:23 PM | Report abuse

@cstanton1:

You wrote "...its intended to score goals at any cost...In my entire life I have yet to witness this kind of philosophy work at the NHL or any other level."

When boomer44 referenced the Oilers dynasty, he/she wasn't talking about the players on the team as a comparison, but the approach to the game, which was very similar to what the caps employ and obviously was wildly successful "at the NHL or any other level". Also, BB recently had great success with this same approach in Hershey, winning a calder cup and playing for another. I believe the AHL would qualify as "any other level".

Posted by: GusDaMan | March 5, 2009 3:24 PM | Report abuse

@ cstanton1

I'm certainly not comparing the Caps to the Oilers and as good as Mike Green is at this time, he will never reach the scoring numbers of Paul Coffey for many reasons.

But you said you had never seen in your lifetime a system of offense first with the D allowed to jump in the play, win a Cup. The Oilers certainly won with that system and their defense was not spectacular. Fuhr's lowest GAA during that era of Cups was 3.44 or something near tha number. I know it was an entirely different era, but they won with that style.

I do agree that many more Cups have been won with good D and grat goaltending, something the current Caps are missing.

Posted by: boomer44 | March 5, 2009 3:24 PM | Report abuse

@numero94

Green-Schultz
Alzer-Jurcina
Poti-Erskine
Mo

Posted by: saintex | March 5, 2009 3:25 PM | Report abuse

A or ...
Where do you see our defense?? Just curious...

We all know BB's system hangs goalies out to dry, it's the way it works. Any goalie facing multiple breakaways and odd-man rushes every game is going to have skewed numbers... while I'll admit JT has been inconsistent this year, he, in no way, is our biggest problem!!

Scofield

It does. Thats exactly the way it works. Its not intended to hang the goalies out to dry, its intended to score goals at any cost. Hence the breakaways, the multiple odd man rushes, the numerous shorthanded chances against us.

In my entire life I have yet to witness this kind of philosophy work at the NHL or any other level. There has got to be a better balance of defense to offense. I know cap fans are in heaven because we have a great record right now but there are serious issues with the way Boudreau manages this team and his philosophies. Our playoff opponent will have a field day on offense against us. And having to run around in your zone will wear out your defense pretty quickly and make it hard to break out clean for offensive chances.

Posted by: cstanton1 | March 5, 2009 2:53 PM

B ?
Thats a joke right Opita? The only reason Nylander gets bounced around is he is unable to be effective for more than a short spurt. If he was consistent he'd be left alone. He has games where he's downright awful. Do you see Brooks Laich have awful game after awful game? No, and he bounces around more than Nyles. Terrible excuse for a player who is clearly on his downswing which is why we were trying to dump him and his bloated salary.

Posted by: cstanton1 | March 5, 2009 2:59 PM

A - insightful, well thought out, different perspective, interesting etc. etc.

B - wtf? why so negative?

i like cstanton1A better - can he come out an play more often?

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | March 5, 2009 3:25 PM | Report abuse

MY source is not 100%. She is a girl who works within the organization with community relations. She usually is at a table during the game running promotions.

I don't know if it is valid.

But yes I paid money and would like to know if anyone else heard OVECHKIN would not be playing tonight

Posted by: DCSPORTS | March 5, 2009 3:27 PM | Report abuse

being that the practices at KCI are always open to the public - and I assume that was the case yesterday - the Ovi / Nyls "friend of a friend" rumor is bogus.

Posted by: saintex | March 5, 2009 3:30 PM | Report abuse

Didn't Tarik's last blog have Poti, Theodore, and Ovechkin - all to play.

As for Nyls shooting at Ovechkin... I can't see that happening. Nyls isn't like that - he is more reserved. But, if it did happen and Nyls got a lil fury built up, then that might be a good thing.

Posted by: _828 | March 5, 2009 3:30 PM | Report abuse

@VladG

I agree, and see the point you were making. I woul dhave liked to get Guerin for a pick if we had cap space, but then again one of our young guys would be sittimng with Guerin in the lineup. ( Fleish or Laich?)

Posted by: boomer44 | March 5, 2009 3:31 PM | Report abuse

i dont really see why ovechkin palying or not really matters if you are going to go, but if anyone can confirm/deny this in any way, please do. we dont need our locker room to be all out of order right now.

Posted by: richmondphil | March 5, 2009 3:32 PM | Report abuse

I think he'll be playing. All CAPS on OVECHKIN gives you away.

Posted by: saintex | March 5, 2009 3:32 PM | Report abuse

so who sits tonight so that useless pos Nylander can play?

Posted by: wendel2 | March 5, 2009 3:35 PM | Report abuse

I am not trying to start a rumor or cause trouble.

I came on here to see if it was true. I saw Tarik say he WAS playing so I thought I would post here and Tarik or someone knowledgable would respond.

I guess it doesn't matter if we know ahead of time if he is playing but I just wanted to use the board to see if anyone knew anything.

Posted by: DCSPORTS | March 5, 2009 3:36 PM | Report abuse

If Nyls took a shot at Ovie, or if anyone took a shot at one of their teammates in a malicious manner like that, I would hope he would be suspended from the team for a period of time, not rewarded with ice time.

I also hope that Ovie didn't get into anyone over a trade move. That's not his business. That's between GM and player only.

Posted by: Greg S. | March 5, 2009 3:38 PM | Report abuse

@majicsea
"Scratching Steks is a great idea soviet! Now lets see the other team scores on every powerplay, so how many goals do we need?"
---------------------------------------
Are you trying to say that Stecks is the reason our PK isn't the worst in the league? Please tell me you're kidding. He's a big reason we're as bad as we are, if he doesn't win the faceoff we're screwed. You need speed on the PK and I don't remember anybody ever accusing Stecks as being a fast guy. He's completely worthless if he doesn't win the faceoff.

Posted by: pokerface1208 | March 5, 2009 3:39 PM | Report abuse

@ _828

As I've mentioned many time before cstanton1 posts only when the Caps have a bad game or two. During the long winning streak and Green's NHL record he was nowhere to be found. Pathetic, unhappy, negative cockroach who crawls out only to spew garbage about the team he's supposedly a fan of.

Posted by: ranndino | March 5, 2009 3:42 PM | Report abuse

@ DCSPORTS

I was at practice today and Neuvy told me that he was ambushed by other Caps players while sleeping last night and beaten with bags full of soap.

Anyone know if there's any truth to this?

Posted by: ranndino | March 5, 2009 3:45 PM | Report abuse

'Pathetic, unhappy, negative cockroach who crawls out only to spew garbage about the team he's supposedly a fan of." -Ranndino

Dont hold back! tell us what you really feel!

Posted by: Dizzy1205 | March 5, 2009 3:46 PM | Report abuse

yeah that Nyls taking a shot at OV story is crap.

Posted by: SombreroGuy | March 5, 2009 3:47 PM | Report abuse

Randino you are an idiot...

Posted by: DCSPORTS | March 5, 2009 3:48 PM | Report abuse

ranndino,

Haha, I know - I remember him a JSchon getting all worked up because he said that Green sucked and JSchon was defending Green. It's tough, I thought your points were logical and easy to understand. Some people are just blind.

Who knows? I think its pretty sad that he can be so negative. Why be a fan of the team? Sounds like my friends that are Philly fans. Who knows, I don't remember him last year... maybe this wasn't the year to become a Caps fan... maybe next year?

Posted by: _828 | March 5, 2009 3:50 PM | Report abuse

tominfl1

Thanks for the goalie history. I wasn't that focused on the Caps then and don't have a good handle on what the team was like. In the last 5 years or so when I have been totally focused on them, goaltending was always my frustration.

I wish I had seen Kolzig in the years of his Vezina trophy. In my Caps experience, he hovered somewhere in the high 20's in rankings (at his best) and was getting worst by the year. When Huet came (and people are right. He wasn't even among the top 8 or so), the entire level of confidence and performance of the team skyrocketed. With Boudreau & Huet we became a different team and talent like Ovie's shined.

I know D is a problem. Personally, if I had to choose one, it would be goal-tending. I have seen mediocre teams beat us and rise in the standing because of fantastic goal-tending. We certainly have been humbled by teams that shut out our star offensive players with spectacular goal-tending. And, to my knowledge, I have not seen an elite team without that component. But it's a moot point because we are not addiing anyone, so let's hope that Theo will be inspired and transformed.

I don't think Neuvy is bad. He is very talented. I just do not think he was ready for NHL level playiing, which includes unpredictable things like screw ups by the defense, penalty shots by star players and last minute changes of plans. I think it was unfair to him to toss him out there, especially with an inconsistent defense. I hope he does not get discouraged.

Posted by: caraveli | March 5, 2009 3:50 PM | Report abuse

Ovie got into it with Nylander about Nyls not waiving his no trade clause, so Nyls shot a puck at Ovie & hit him in the foot. Ovie left practice early, but not before taking a shot back at Nyls in the hall...


OMFG you guys are absurd. Ovie spend a fair amount of time at the Nylanders. So does Backstrom. This kind of stupid rumors gets me fuming. Your hairhead friends that works at Kettler should stick to roasting wheeners.

Posted by: atybat | March 5, 2009 3:55 PM | Report abuse

Forgive me for being concerned if the best player in hockey is playing tonight. It would be like going to a baseball game in the rain and drizzle. Your still at the game, but it's not as great of a day as you wish it was.

Posted by: SA-Town | March 5, 2009 3:56 PM | Report abuse

"Your hairhead friends that works at Kettler should stick to roasting wheeners."

HA! OK that was funny!

Posted by: Dizzy1205 | March 5, 2009 3:57 PM | Report abuse

Early this season we Steckelled Semin all over the opposing team's PP's.

Semin still fed some wicked breakout passes on the PK last time I watched

It doesn't have to be Steckel, but we need someone -responsible - ready to break on the PK (besides Ovi, he's too high profile)

Posted by: austinsteve | March 5, 2009 3:58 PM | Report abuse

what other popular Caps blogs are out there?

Posted by: cappies | March 5, 2009 4:03 PM | Report abuse

@caraveli

As well as Huet played down the stretch last year, he kept intatct his record of never having won a playoff round!

Posted by: boomer44 | March 5, 2009 4:06 PM | Report abuse

I like the fact that the Caps stood pat, and didn't sacrifice their future. However, the simple fact is they don't have a team that will win the cup. I see them losing in the second round.

Posted by: hokiedee | March 5, 2009 4:10 PM | Report abuse

cappies, Check out japersrink.com. Not only is it a great blog, but JP's got a huge blogroll of other great Caps blogs.

Not sure if anyone watches Arrested Development, but this is funny stuff. http://msconduct10.blogspot.com/2009/03/which-arrested-development-character-is.html

Posted by: jmu_capsgirl | March 5, 2009 4:11 PM | Report abuse

sounds like the natives are restless and can't wait for the playoffs to begin. anyone who wants to know what happened to ovie's foot should go back and read tarik's blog about it. he was there, dont you know...unless...tarik is in on the conspiracy and perhaps is covering up the fact that nyls chased ovie with a hatchet in the locker room after ovie gave him an atomic wedgie for not waiving his NTC.

Posted by: dcsportsfan1 | March 5, 2009 4:19 PM | Report abuse

So bummed!! Got my Frozen Four tickets today and had to list them on stubhub. The games are during spring break and we have to go see my mom in FL. The tickets are really cool and the stuff they came with as well. I've been looking forward to this since I found out I won the draw and actually getting the tickets only makes it worse!

Posted by: majiksea | March 5, 2009 4:20 PM | Report abuse

Wow...this is like the a big soap opra......let me go check the pens blog...lol.....

Posted by: Capsfannmiss | March 5, 2009 4:20 PM | Report abuse

People have been mean on this blog lately! Let's all get along! :)

Posted by: rachel216 | March 5, 2009 4:25 PM | Report abuse

Boomer44:

This is funny: "As well as Huet played down the stretch last year, he kept intatc his record of never having won a playoff round!" I am glad we helped him with this goal. So I guess we need an upgrade from Huet.

Curious. How far into the playoffs did Theo go last year (or ever in his career).

Posted by: caraveli | March 5, 2009 4:25 PM | Report abuse

Caraveli, Theo and the Avs were swept in the second round by the Wings last season.

Posted by: jmu_capsgirl | March 5, 2009 4:30 PM | Report abuse

What are the lineups for tonight?

Posted by: Freez | March 5, 2009 4:32 PM | Report abuse

@dcsportsfan1

I KNEW there was an Atomic Wedgie involved in this shenanigan!!

Posted by: CapsKH | March 5, 2009 4:33 PM | Report abuse

Looking at his career numbers, he seems to be good for the first round, but hasn't made it past the second yet.

Posted by: jmu_capsgirl | March 5, 2009 4:34 PM | Report abuse

@JMU

love the arrested development link. great stuff. STEVE HOLT!

Posted by: sirbobalew | March 5, 2009 4:35 PM | Report abuse

Caraveli: Last year, the Avalanche beat the Minnesota Wild in 6 games, one game where Theo single-handily won for the Avs. They were then swept by the Red Wings. The Avs were outscored 21-9 in the 4 games.

Posted by: rachel216 | March 5, 2009 4:35 PM | Report abuse

sirbobalew, haha. I haven't watched nearly enough Arrested Development, but it made me laugh.

Posted by: jmu_capsgirl | March 5, 2009 4:37 PM | Report abuse

Haven't had my development arrested yet. Gotta have something to look fwd to when I get home I guess.

I just have to make a trade deadline re-iteragnostication:

If Fedorov goes down, who will be taking our face-offs with 2 minutes left in 1 goal games in the playoffs?

Posted by: austinsteve | March 5, 2009 4:40 PM | Report abuse

Gordo or Stecks, not Backs fo sho!

Posted by: jmu_capsgirl | March 5, 2009 4:43 PM | Report abuse

jmu, it's one of my favorite shows, so i really got a kick out of some of the explanations.

Posted by: sirbobalew | March 5, 2009 4:44 PM | Report abuse

Gordon becomes the go-to guy in that situation eh?

Yep
:)

Posted by: austinsteve | March 5, 2009 4:45 PM | Report abuse

sirbobalew, I've seen a few episodes, but they were hilarious. I've got a season or two somewhere on my Netflix queue.

Posted by: jmu_capsgirl | March 5, 2009 4:48 PM | Report abuse

hey, jnu, so you remember the abs series last year, huh?
:)
does anything I said ring true this year?

lots of hate around here today.

Posted by: oo7 | March 5, 2009 4:51 PM | Report abuse

Lots of Trolls from Pennsylstan around today!

Posted by: majiksea | March 5, 2009 4:54 PM | Report abuse

Why are there some posters who keep getting worked up about "using" a 4.8 million dollar center in Nylander?

Need I remind you that SFeds is a 4 million dollar center, and has been twice the player Nylander is all season long?

In fact, Fedorov just passed Nylander in scoring, despite playing twenty less games.

Need I also remind people that Backstrom is even cheaper, and is just as good (or even better than?) Fedorov.

We have 2 very good centers on this team. Nylander either needs to learn how to backcheck (he was -25 in 40 games last year) or transform the third line into an offensive threat, with his supposed "skills" (read: tendency to circle furiously, then cough up the puck).

Posted by: greener1 | March 5, 2009 4:54 PM | Report abuse

As for nylander sucking, no he doesn't, he's 36 coming off of shoulder surgery and it ain't working out this year. but it's not dramatic so no one wants to pay it any mind. 1st line 4th line, don't matter, can't pass and can't shoot. can still skate circles.
Andropov would have been an upgrade to steckel, no doubt. shocked he was given up for so little to NY of all places.

Posted by: oo7 | March 5, 2009 4:56 PM | Report abuse

more stats:
caps vs east playoff teams (as of today)
opp gets 3 goals or less: 20-2
opp 4 or more: 1-9
vs west playoff teams
opp 3 or less: 4-3
opp 4 or more: 1-2

what does any of this mean? that for this team defense wins.
when they give or 3 or fewer goals: 26-5 vs playoff bound teams and when they give up at least 4: 2-11.
the only other thing i can draw from these stats is: 31 games at 3 or less and only 13 at 4 or more is 70% are at 3 or less - that is a good thing.
if the playoffs tell us anything it is that defenses tighten it up in the second season. let's hope the caps can do that too
this will improve our odds from the 1/26th (as posted earlier) to 4379-1 - by my calculations

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | March 5, 2009 4:57 PM | Report abuse

Cleaning out my trade deadline closet:

Nice attempted fake by GMGM on Guerin.
We didn't need him. But still last night the Avs announcers said it seemed clear the Caps were hot on him.

I will call out GMGM's bluff that he was trying to raise stakes on Pittsburg who needed (and got) a father figure for Crosby for practically nothing.

He will get better at that game.

Posted by: austinsteve | March 5, 2009 4:57 PM | Report abuse

@majicsea
"Scratching Steks is a great idea soviet! Now lets see the other team scores on every powerplay, so how many goals do we need?"
---------------------------------------
Are you trying to say that Stecks is the reason our PK isn't the worst in the league? Please tell me you're kidding. He's a big reason we're as bad as we are, if he doesn't win the faceoff we're screwed. You need speed on the PK and I don't remember anybody ever accusing Stecks as being a fast guy. He's completely worthless if he doesn't win the faceoff.

Posted by: pokerface1208 | March 5, 2009 3:39 PM


not true. Steckel is one of the reasons our PK isn't worse than it is. Unlike Schultz, Steckel actually uses his long reach to his advantage.

And Randinno, you're still an ignorant tool. Some things never change buddy!

Posted by: cstanton1 | March 5, 2009 4:59 PM | Report abuse

hey.

lets go caps.

Posted by: richmondphil | March 5, 2009 5:02 PM | Report abuse

Nyls is a very good center. Coach has to figure out how to use him!

Posted by: johnbear1 | March 5, 2009 5:03 PM | Report abuse

Randino you are an idiot...

Posted by: DCSPORTS | March 5, 2009 3:48 PM

Calling Randinno an idiot is an insult to idiots everywhere.

Posted by: cstanton1 | March 5, 2009 5:03 PM | Report abuse

where's -boo- when she's needed *sigh*

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | March 5, 2009 5:05 PM | Report abuse

How about we all stop acting like children and pull together to support the CAPS tonight.

Posted by: ERHDC1 | March 5, 2009 5:06 PM | Report abuse

JMU:
LOL! Guess you and Dave (and maybe mauree) are the only ones who care ... I'm not feelin' the love!! ;-) Oh well, I just hope the Caps bring it tonight. After the week that I have had, I need it! LET'S GO CAPS!!

Posted by: Boo- | March 5, 2009 5:07 PM | Report abuse

I was at the practice yesterday and OV took the puck off his ankle from an Evason slapshot. I think he was pissed because Boudreau told Evason to dump it in and Evason instead took a shot at the net and hit OV who was not expecting it. He limped off the ice, sat at the bench for a moment adjusting his skate boot, then headed to the locker room.

Nylander was never involved.

Posted by: meagle | March 5, 2009 5:07 PM | Report abuse

larry murphy sucks.

Posted by: richmondphil | March 5, 2009 5:07 PM | Report abuse

Oh! Maybe Kirk missed me too?!? :-)

Posted by: Boo- | March 5, 2009 5:08 PM | Report abuse

With the deadline having passed I'm officially done with hearing how Nylander sucks. From here on out, as far as I'm concerned, Nylander is the Man! He is hot and he's going to take this team deep.

Go Caps!

Posted by: Sonyask | March 5, 2009 5:12 PM | Report abuse

Rachel and JMU:

So Theo lasted longer than Huet in the playoffs! That's good to hear. Maybe the vote of confidence (in not getting another goalie) will light a fire under him.

About Nylander. I so hope he has never read these blogs. I think you are all being very negative and, yes, I do think he is being used as a scapegoat. I agree with whoever said:

"if Caps could find a way to make Nylander productive, it would indeed be a huge boost to the team." I remember what a huge difference he made immediately after he came. Clearly he is an impact, elite player and something has not clicked for him this year. Finding a way to make him productive should be the coach' job, though I understand that even the best coach cannot be the right coach for everyone.

I just don't think Nyls deserves the kind of ridicule he gets constantly. If the team shares some of our attitudes, no wonder he is not doing well.

Randinno: I have not seen Varly in Hershey but I had the same feeling you expressed when I saw him play here. He is ready and potentially great. It will be a great shame if they don't bring him here soon to back up Theo.

Posted by: caraveli | March 5, 2009 5:14 PM | Report abuse

boo - i did - the past fews days in here could have used some calming influence

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | March 5, 2009 5:15 PM | Report abuse

Nyls is a very good center. Coach has to figure out how to use him!

Posted by: johnbear1 | March 5, 2009 5:03 PM

He's played him at 2nd and 3rd line center, he's played him at 1st line RW. He's given him skilled wingers and checking wingers and combinations inbetween. I'm not a fan of some of Boudreau's decisions but he can't be faulted for Nylander. Its not his fault when Nylander turns the puck over and then doesn't skate back or Nylander just being plain ineffective along the boards or cutting through traffic to set up his linemates. That is just a factor of Nylander's age, maybe the shoulder injury's lingering effects and maybe he's just lost his overall drive.

Posted by: cstanton1 | March 5, 2009 5:15 PM | Report abuse


nylander looks like Robert Englund.

Posted by: richmondphil | March 5, 2009 5:17 PM | Report abuse

Varlamov isnt ready either. goalies take much longer to develop than skaters.

id be surprised if he pulled some Roy/mason crap, though pleasantly surprised.

Posted by: richmondphil | March 5, 2009 5:20 PM | Report abuse

Kirk:
LOL! If I ever had any influence at all, then it was lost long ago. Besides, even if I could do anything I wouldn't be much help tonight - I am off to the game. So I guess you kids are going to have to learn how to play nice by yourselves!! ;-)

Posted by: Boo- | March 5, 2009 5:21 PM | Report abuse

Boo - have a good time and go nyls!!

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | March 5, 2009 5:24 PM | Report abuse

@richmondphil

Larry Murphy sucked ckampagne from the Stanley Cuo four times.

Posted by: boomer44 | March 5, 2009 5:24 PM | Report abuse

@richmondphil

Larry Murphy sucked ckampagne from the Stanley Cuo four times.

Posted by: boomer44 | March 5, 2009 5:24 PM

ahh, it was obvious you weren't posting here yesterday.

I called larry murphy one of the best defensive man to ever play in the NHL and someone, a certain little troll, told me larry murphy sucked. I inquired as to why he thought that and never responded to me.

Posted by: richmondphil | March 5, 2009 5:28 PM | Report abuse

Have fun Boo - don't underestimate your influence here, things are going quite a bit crazy when you don't keep us straight :D

Posted by: mauree | March 5, 2009 5:29 PM | Report abuse

yes Boo - it keeps those of us that are almost sane in check

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | March 5, 2009 5:35 PM | Report abuse

Who are the healthy scratches? Better not be Fehr.

Posted by: Freez | March 5, 2009 5:37 PM | Report abuse

I am not faulting Boudreau for Nyls or anything else. The guy is a genius. I know he has tried everything, but there seems to be a disconnect in style, chemistry or some other intangible factor that has not worked. Maybe it never will, and maybe BB will find a way. But to say that the guy is too old or a bad choice is not reasonable. It is grasping at the easiest and nastier explanation to vent frustration with the team. He proved his value plenty up to his surgery at the end of last year.

Though his stats dropped since his Ranger days, he posted 37 points in 40 games last year--almost a point per game. And if it wasn't for his surgery and the change of coaching, maybe he would have matched his previous stats this year. And maybe he will yet.

Okay, I predict that Nyls scores or has an assist tonight.

Posted by: caraveli | March 5, 2009 5:39 PM | Report abuse

@caraveli

I'm not a big Theo fan, and his career playoff stats are similar to Huet's except he has won a couple of series, as well as a Vezina & Hart trophy during the regular season.

JT60: GP W L GAA SPCT SO
Total NHL 47 19 26 2.76 0.915 1

Huet:
NHL 13 5 8 2.65 0.919 0

Posted by: boomer44 | March 5, 2009 5:41 PM | Report abuse

huet is an overrated goalie. he doesn't deserve 6 mil.

Posted by: richmondphil | March 5, 2009 5:44 PM | Report abuse

I predict Ovi will be stuck in goals for a few games cause he's got Don-Cherry-Take-That-Post-goal Celebrations on his mind.

Shame, the iron is still pretty hot if he can score a couple tonight.

Hopefully he proves his super-human nature once again.

Posted by: austinsteve | March 5, 2009 5:44 PM | Report abuse

oh i got his and khabi's mixed up.

i like theo more than huet anyway.

Posted by: richmondphil | March 5, 2009 5:46 PM | Report abuse

@richmondphil

I figured something was up, because you post some good thoughts. I must have missed the one yesterday.

Posted by: boomer44 | March 5, 2009 5:46 PM | Report abuse

Sonyask, I'm with you! Since I'm failing at the rest of my Lent promises, I'm extending the "No Crosby bashing" to include "No Nyls bashing"!

oo7, Sorry, I'm assuming you mean Avs series, but I didn't really watch most of it. I was still in classes, so my hockey watching this summer was sporadic. And I haven't been reading most of the comments the past few days. (Gotta keep my enthusiasm up! Only 9 weeks til graduation.) So I don't know what stance of yours I'm supposed to be supporting. :-P

Caraveli, Yeah, Theo has the ability to go further than Huet has shown. I think as long as he stays healthy and doesn't have any personally really crappy (3+GA you can't blame on the D) games until the playoffs, he'll be okay. Goalies are neurotic anyways. Who knows what will happen?

Posted by: jmu_capsgirl | March 5, 2009 5:47 PM | Report abuse

I just find Huet to be one of the most overrated goalies playing right now. Him and Price, though Price's age gives him an excuse.

I know Theo isn't exactly stellar, but i'm not really complaining.

I had a post about Pascal LeClaire earlier, and I think bringing him in would've been awesome, but as i said in the post, as long as Varlamov develops properly it is a moot point.

Posted by: richmondphil | March 5, 2009 5:52 PM | Report abuse

jmu_capsgirl:
extending the "No Crosby bashing" to include "No Nyls bashing"!
extending or substituting? please, please, please say it's substituting

crosby's such a crybaby that he doesn't deserve a power blue skirt to go with his pom-poms!!

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | March 5, 2009 5:55 PM | Report abuse

@ irockthe red,
Thanks for the info. Much appreciated. My only concern in the matter is Pothier's health. I understand what you're saying about him being cleared by the doctors to resume playing. To me, that a crock! We're talkin' common sense here. The man has had 4 or 5 concussions in the past. Every time that happens, your chances of suffering a debilitating PERMANENT injury, or worse ( Death ) increases. One needn't be a rocket scientist to understand that. Last time I looked, you can only die once. Sorry, but some potential "Fortune" isn't worth me risking MY LIFE. Obviously, you don't agree. C'est la vie.

Posted by: Puckguru | March 5, 2009 5:55 PM | Report abuse

wow I didn't know he has previous concussions. Looked it up, last one was the fifth one. This is so dangerous it should be stopped :( I'm not sure they should even consider a return in the NHL, and particularly the playoffs.

Posted by: mauree | March 5, 2009 6:04 PM | Report abuse

yeah, but the thing is is that it's not your life, or irtr's life. it's brian pothier's life and i'm sure he knows full well about all the risks.

Posted by: richmondphil | March 5, 2009 6:06 PM | Report abuse

not that i would want him too - but even if he got his 6th concussion - he would be more coherent, articulate, rational and logical than a lot of poster here from the last few days

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | March 5, 2009 6:09 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: mauree | March 5, 2009 6:20 PM | Report abuse

washingtoncaps.com is reporting ovechkin will miss tonight!!! let the mass hysteria commence. I am surprised that Tarik has not reported on this yet... Let's hope its just 1 game!

Posted by: finnmeg | March 5, 2009 6:27 PM | Report abuse

Nah we should be ok even w/o OVI. The Leafs where in selling mode yesterday looking to rebuild. Good game for him to miss. Of course, he better play on Sunday.

Posted by: mauree | March 5, 2009 6:30 PM | Report abuse

I think we'll be ok without him tonight, but the fact that he's missing a game at all says it must be a little worse than was previously though, he's not the type to sit one out just because it hurts a little. But let's hope that's just a precaution so he's ready for sunday.

Posted by: finnmeg | March 5, 2009 6:33 PM | Report abuse

UGHHHHHHHH, this SUCKS :( I'm gonna get whoever shot the puck at his foot!

Posted by: rachel216 | March 5, 2009 6:34 PM | Report abuse

Ovi is probably a bit hurt, but for sure he's pissed off about his foot.

Posted by: mauree | March 5, 2009 6:36 PM | Report abuse

@opita1:
You are quite insane. I bet Ted would really love a couple of "good ol Americans" who post on a blog to run a multimillion dollar organization.

Protip: NHL is a business. Yeah they want to win, but it is in the interest of the bottom line to have a team that is competitive for many years than 1 cup followed by more rebuilding and lean years.

Posted by: trunkenmath | March 5, 2009 6:44 PM | Report abuse

I hope Ovie is okay, and him sitting out this game is a just a precautionary measure.

we can win this though! it's time to get that confidence back!

Let's go Caps!

Posted by: jogabonito | March 5, 2009 6:49 PM | Report abuse

Here are some stats i think are interesting.

Last year in the last 20 games the Caps went 14-5-1 with 3.15 goals/game and 1.75 goals against avg.

This year they are scoring 3.31 goals/game but are giving up 2.97 goals against. But they are still 40-20-5.

This team has shown it can shut down the opposing offenses and i believe they will.

the only reason they lost to the Flyers in the first round last year was because the playoffs are different. it is more gritty and you have to fight for every inch on the ice. The caps figured that out about half way through the series and almost came back to win. They know how to play in the playoffs now. The best is yet to come. But they need to pay more attention to keeping the puck out of their net.

Posted by: bigschu8 | March 5, 2009 7:15 PM | Report abuse

@ DCSPORTS

Actually you're an idiot. With no sense of humor to boot.

Posted by: ranndino | March 6, 2009 4:11 AM | Report abuse

@ cstanton1

The ignorant tool is you and it's become obvious to everyone by now. Where are your so called logical arguments? I absolutely destroyed your argument about Boudreau's system being crap and not working on any level with cold, hard facts and your comeback is to call me an ignorant tool. You're dumber than a jackass.

Posted by: ranndino | March 6, 2009 4:25 AM | Report abuse

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