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Posted at 11:27 AM ET, 12/13/2010

Poll: What should the Caps do now?

By Washington Post Sports

When the losing streak was at four games, we asked whether it was time to panic. Forty-eight percent of you said no, it is just a slump.

Fair enough. Now that the skid has hit six, and in the aftermath of last night's shellacking at the hands of the Rangers, what should we think? Katie documented the effect the losing streak has had on the Caps place in the standings this morning.

Let's look at it this way:

You can debate specific ideas and proposals in the thread.

By Washington Post Sports  | December 13, 2010; 11:27 AM ET
Tags:  Capitals losing streak, Caps vs. Rangers, Washington Capitals  
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Comments

Adversity is a good thing and something all Champions must face at one point. But, ever since we were up 3-1 versus the Habs and then lost the series, I have thought the Caps have been figured out. Now teams like Florida can execute the blueprint that Montreal wrote flawlessly, and SHUT US OUT at home. BB needed to go last year. Wow, I am guessing HBO is salivating at the chance to catch a coach being fired on camera.

Posted by: SuperZ3383 | December 13, 2010 11:52 AM | Report abuse

I think this poll should have given check boxes for multiple choices rather than ratio buttons for just one choice. I can think of at least two things in this poll that I think we should do.

Posted by: VTDuffman | December 13, 2010 11:54 AM | Report abuse

Forgive me for not wanting this team to coast into the playoffs like the last few years. Grind it out...play for your spot, and be ready to fight for every inch come playoff time.

I like this right now...I want this team to get a huge chip on it's shoulder going into the spring.

Posted by: SA-Town | December 13, 2010 11:58 AM | Report abuse

I think the Caps should hire CSTANTON1, PHILR, HUNTERFORCOACH, FLDAVE, and myself to oversee the on-ice product (personnel, coaching, systems, etc to coach).....we'll leave SGM3 to marketing because he sure knows how to pull the wool over lots of peoples' eyes

Posted by: vermontcaps | December 13, 2010 12:02 PM | Report abuse

What I don't get is how can you not come to the rink ready to rip off the other guys head? There seems to be no passion, no drive, no energy and no pride. I know the flu is rampant and the top defense pair is out, but please have some pride. The Caps were always known for battling 60+ mins win or lose. They punished people left and right. I don't care about the skill level. They need to start finishing checks, stop improvising and be stronger in the corners. Every player needs to look in the mirror and find some heart. It doesn't matter who the coach is it will be the same result if they don't man up. If they keep this up, they won't make the playoffs.

Posted by: robostop10 | December 13, 2010 12:05 PM | Report abuse

If the skid hits 8, then you get super worried. But if we come back and win 3 straight, do you just blame it on offensive slumps and the flu?

Posted by: dimagus | December 13, 2010 12:06 PM | Report abuse

So I've been gone for a week...can anyone fill me in on whats been going down. I dont have the desire to go back and read all the postings. I did notice cstanton1 is back and posting regularly. Nice.

And before anyone feels the need to point out my boy and his cross-check on Sat...I have already shaken my finger at him. I think he learned his lesson.

Also, about Ovie's fight last night, I can only guess that all the people that were calling for him to fight have come on here and bashed him for it. Because lets face it, they are never happy.

On a side note...anyone thinking the Pens are peaking too soon and will fizzle? I do.

Posted by: SeminAllOverTheIce | December 13, 2010 12:10 PM | Report abuse

this has been going on for nearly 20 games. This isn't a "6 game" thing. They are 6-10 over the last 16 and the Blues win was deceiving - go back and watch Semyon save the game. That's 16 games and that's not some aberration. If you take out the nearly 20 goals that Semin scored early, this team would be in serious trouble.

As I said a few posts ago, this team has quit playing. It's not talent. It's not heart. It's quitting.

Posted by: saintex | December 13, 2010 12:12 PM | Report abuse

The Poti extension signifies everything that is wrong with this team. We extended him before the season ever started. Gave him $3m for 2 more years. He has been run out of town in every other city where he has played. In his 12 year NHL career, he has been past the 1st round once, with us in 2009. And now we have Mrs. Poti and her immoveable contract for 2 more years.

McPhee ignores our annual meltdowns. I am not for McPhee firing BB. They should be joined at the hip. Ted needs to keep or fire both, period.

I can also say, after last postseason, some of us feared this exact scenario. Thing is, we thought it wouldn't happen until spring.

Posted by: underpants2 | December 13, 2010 12:12 PM | Report abuse

@SAOTI
Also, about Ovie's fight last night, I can only guess that all the people that were calling for him to fight have come on here and bashed him for it. Because lets face it, they are never happy.

-----yes they did!

This is a japersrink response that it better written than what I a capable of right now.

As for the dialog on firing Boudreau – it can be constructive, but I doubt many minds will be changed.

Those in favor say: 1) the team needs a change; 2) the team isn’t responding to him; 3) he doesn’t have the answer; 4) the Flyers/Pens/Devils changed mid-season with success

Those against say: 1) it’s the players not him; 2) let’s not overreact here – it’s only December; 3) he doesn’t have his top D-pair; 4) there really isn’t a better solution out there than him

This is an emotional issue for some, not unlike some unresolvable political issues. There is no right answer, and we won’t know until a decision is made or it’s clear it won’t be.

I’m on the side of staying the course, precisely for the reasons I wrote above, but I understand why others may think Boudreau should go. That is a fair opinion.

Per the posts above, however, let’s make it constructive on both sides. Please don’t write "Fire Boudreau" in a one line post. Please don’t write "If you think BB should be fired you are an idiot."


Posted by: capscoach | December 13, 2010 12:14 PM | Report abuse

It's hard to meet last year's regular season as far as goals and points in the standings. But what good did last year's regular season do? Not much considering we went nowhere in the playoffs. I think this team needs to earn each win, deal with some crappy times and fight all the way to the end of the regular season and take that grit into the playoffs. That's why a team like Philly was able to make a cup run. They had to earn in from start to finish and that's what this team needs to do. Better to have this now than March.

Posted by: dcox50 | December 13, 2010 12:15 PM | Report abuse

My letter to Ted

Ok Ted,

I don't want to over react, but the Caps are making me REALLY sad! I am hoping a little adversity is exactly what the doctor ordered for this team, but until they start playing better I am going to be nervous.

Just cuious...might now be a good time to invest in a top notch sports psychologist if you have not already done so?

Posted by: capscoach | December 13, 2010 12:18 PM | Report abuse

I am with VTDuffman on this one, this should be a multiple choice poll but since I only had one it was to change the coach.

Posted by: PhilR | December 13, 2010 12:18 PM | Report abuse

I loved Ovie's fight, and I think it was long overdue. The problem was, no one on this team other than Hendricks bothered to follow his lead. It's a huge problem actually, and tells me everything I need to know. Outside of a few players, this team is gutless. Teams like Philly and Pitt create team cohesion when they fight, because they all stick up for one another. They play together, and for each other. The same can't be said for this team.

I agree with VTDuffman on the poll. I'd check the top two choices if I could.

Posted by: Fletch22 | December 13, 2010 12:19 PM | Report abuse

On Japers rink someone mentioned an alternative to firing BB would be to just bring someone in on a consulting level. While it might rub some people in the org. the wrong way, we might just need an outsider who is not knee deep in this help.

What if we even just brought in Bondra and maybe Kolzig for our goalies like someone suggested.


Also...I think BB should maybe watch the practice from above and let the asst. coaches run it. Maybe if he gets an overview and just watches the guys and then does video afterwards it would really help.

Posted by: capscoach | December 13, 2010 12:22 PM | Report abuse

@ SAOTI

Welcome back didn't miss much as the caps haven't done much except get their respective butts kicked

@ Underpants2

I said months ago that Ted dropped the ball. Everyone knew stevie y was on the market looking. And yes sure from this point its is easy to shake my finger and complain, but really who on here didn't think GmGm was a least a part of our problems if not a major part? While I am not a BB basher I am not a true believer either great coach he is but at the AHL level and maybe even the KHL but not the NHL.

People have made reference to Ovie's fight and last night Joe B said the prior to the flightless foul going on their win streak, Cindy had a fight and he posed the question would Ovie's fight have the same effect for us. I hate, and I mean HATE to admitt this, big difference in fight Ovie did not clearly win that fight.

I am now waiting for all the band wagon fans to dump their season tickets so I can get 2 for my kids.

Posted by: bqts | December 13, 2010 12:24 PM | Report abuse

First, let's get something clear, this isn't the Redskins we're talking about. This is a GOOD team having a bad run. They have depth, talent and great coaching. Even given all those advantages, even the best sometimes have a bad run. They are trying - and things will come together for them. I believe in this team (unlike the Redskins who have little to no talent, a bad owner and a has been coach). The Caps are good - damn good - most teams wish they were half this good. You can see amazing talent come up from Hershey at almost any spot whenever a starter goes down - this team will get over this so, no...we do not panic. They probably just need to relax and try and have some fun. I know this team is probably taking this harder than most of it's fans - they care, it's obvious and they will be okay. I am not worried and belive in this team, this coaching staff, in the Great 8 (and 28) and so many others on this fantastic team - relax, have fun - the wins will come.

Posted by: whelms1 | December 13, 2010 12:25 PM | Report abuse

I am for changing coaches at this point. When the coach calls the players out in public it does nothing more than make the players mad and not want to play for him. BB did not make any adjustments during the playoffs, changes the lines to often. The best stretch this team had in the last couple of years was 4 set lines and roll them. It wears the other team out. He does not have to play green 28-30 minutes a game. Sure some dman do play than many, but very few of them are the type that skate as much as green does.
My vote goes for bringing in Dale Hunter. More grit and playoff savy would help this team a great deal.

Posted by: RichC3 | December 13, 2010 12:25 PM | Report abuse

i agree with super z. teams have figured out what the caps are doing. so bb & the players should adjust and find other ways to win games. but most of all, forwards should practice their shots and how to defend, defense should be great in their defense but should help in offense too, so they should practice their shots too. these players should realize that they are being paid for what they can do, so they should do it!

Posted by: capsfan2007 | December 13, 2010 12:25 PM | Report abuse

On Japers rink someone mentioned an alternative to firing BB would be to just bring someone in on a consulting level. While it might rub some people in the org. the wrong way, we might just need an outsider who is not knee deep in this help.

What if we even just brought in Bondra and maybe Kolzig for our goalies like someone suggested.


Also...I think BB should maybe watch the practice from above and let the asst. coaches run it. Maybe if he gets an overview and just watches the guys and then does video afterwards it would really help.

Posted by: capscoach

Sherm Lewis?

Posted by: Fletch22 | December 13, 2010 12:26 PM | Report abuse

What about bringing in an outside consultant for a few weeks? Maybe someone who isn't knee deep in this mess will have some fresh ideas. Even if they had some alumni come and talk to the players.

Also...I think BB should watch a practice from the overlook while he has the asst. coaches run it. I think watching the players removed from the situation mught help him get a clear picture of what is going on with his team. It might also help him be able to focus on the right video to watch. Sometimes removing yourself from the situation for a minute can clear your head

Posted by: capscoach | December 13, 2010 12:27 PM | Report abuse

we'll leave SGM3 to marketing because he sure knows how to pull the wool over lots of peoples' eyes

Posted by: vermontcaps |
--------------------------------------
That's not marketing, that's sales! LMAO!

Posted by: pokerface1208 | December 13, 2010 12:29 PM | Report abuse

Kidding aside capscoach, it's not a terrible idea, but it has to be player specific, lik Kolzig or some other Cap alumni.

Otherwise, I think it would do more harm than good, undermining the coach, and confusing the players.

Posted by: Fletch22 | December 13, 2010 12:31 PM | Report abuse

@SAOTI

As an OV basher, I was cheering him into the sin bin. I was troubled how the rest of the boys responded, which leads me back to there is something wrong in the locker room with this team. It may be a coach deal or team leadership deal but these guys are very quick to stop playing at the first sign of adversity this year. This team used to have you right where they wanted you when 3 goals down, now they can't hold a 3 goal lead.

I said after the habs series that the BB system was cracked and he made no adjustments. I watch games and see teams playing the Caps like MTL did, hold the caps to 1 or less goals. BB believes his system is the best and is very stubborn to make changes in philosophy. Until the caps make changes on the d-zone clear, 3rd man back check responsibilities and power play entry they will continue to lose. They don't get the breakdowns on the forward rush by the d anymore and are giving up to many iso's on a back checking forward and 2-1's on even man backchecks.

Posted by: cadlecreek1 | December 13, 2010 12:32 PM | Report abuse

sorry about the sorta double post...thought I lost the first one so I retyped it...and of course it shows up later

Posted by: capscoach | December 13, 2010 12:32 PM | Report abuse

Little weak up the middle. Centers need to create offensive opportunities. One of them Marcus Johansson has had no assists in 20 of the 21 games Boudreau has given him a sweater. He is not NHL ready. They need to find a skilled playmaker for the No.2 line somewhere soon.

Posted by: dull | December 13, 2010 12:33 PM | Report abuse

I'll say it one more time...sports psychologist!

Posted by: capscoach | December 13, 2010 12:34 PM | Report abuse

Did you guys see BB's interview after the game? "Gabby" who always has a story or quick witted line was literally speachless. When asked how the Caps are going to break out of this slump his answer was "Some of our players need to stop feeling sorry for themselves..." That was it, no we need to work on this or that, it was all about feelings. Like I've stated he did an incredible job bringing the young players in, adjusting them to the NHL, but now that they are seasoned its time for him to move on. I say that with a great deal of admiration for what BB has accomplished. It's not personal, it's business.

Based on his interview his next 'tactical' move is to send 3/4 of the team to therapy? And of course keep putting Fehr on the ice because, well I don't know, maybe number 16 is his favorite number?

Craig Button on the NHL channel had an awesome point about the Caps offense. He stated while stacked with skill they're incredibly predictable. He mentioned the playoffs last year and how they put 40 + shots per game on Halat but all into his chest. Halat never had to move laterally and the Caps failed to adapt as other great teams can. Great observation. BB is a one trick pony, the league has figured him out and it's showing.

Posted by: FLDave | December 13, 2010 12:35 PM | Report abuse

@Vermont
I'm slightly offended I wasn't included in your list of those to oversee the on-ice product. Can I at least sharpen skates?

I just came out of the Cave, after dreaming I saw many Caps players in tears as they realized Mike Keenan was behind them on the bench. I decided I wanted to drink some Kool Aid with the scantily clad females of the Kool-Aid Club...but no one was on the beach. It's snowing instead. I did see a few folks sitting on the fence over by the cliffs and invited them back to the cave...

Posted by: kcbrichmond | December 13, 2010 12:36 PM | Report abuse

"They have depth, talent and great coaching."

---

Great Coaching? According to what metric?

Posted by: VTDuffman | December 13, 2010 12:36 PM | Report abuse

Little weak up the middle. Centers need to create offensive opportunities. One of them Marcus Johansson has had no assists in 20 of the 21 games Boudreau has given him a sweater. He is not NHL ready. They need to find a skilled playmaker for the No.2 line somewhere soon.

Posted by: dull

agree..and whats worse is that they might be ruining MaJo

Posted by: capscoach | December 13, 2010 12:36 PM | Report abuse

Didnt the Redskins bring in a consultant for Zorn last year? Terrible idea. Either stick with the coach who you believe in, or if you don't believe in Bruce anymore, let him go. It's his team or it's not, no in-betweens.

Posted by: alagarts | December 13, 2010 12:37 PM | Report abuse

Little weak up the middle. Centers need to create offensive opportunities. One of them Marcus Johansson has had no assists in 20 of the 21 games Boudreau has given him a sweater. He is not NHL ready. They need to find a skilled playmaker for the No.2 line somewhere soon.

Posted by: dull | December 13, 2010 12:33 PM | Report abuse
----------------------------------------
I was thinking the same thing last night. Lets face it the kid is going to be a fantastic player at this level. He seems to win the puck battles and he's faster than all get out but the production (end result) isn't there. Maybe our complete lack of a true 2C is a big cause of this skid???????

If I'm GMGM & I have decided to fix this via players vs. coaching I'm going for a legit 2C.

Posted by: pokerface1208 | December 13, 2010 12:38 PM | Report abuse

A sports shrink won't do diddly. Fire the coach that a team has given up on and the league has figured out. Move on

Posted by: JIMALLCAPS2 | December 13, 2010 12:38 PM | Report abuse

A question I would like to ask the people who responded "stand pat" (which appears to be the majority) is:
At what point would you be deem a change necessary? Or in other words, how bad could it get before you had to pull the trigger on a move?

Would your threshold be:
-a 10 game losing streak?
-3rd place in the division?
-9th place in the conference?
-or some other qualitative measure?

As I see it, the Caps are 12-11, 6-3, as in:
12 regulation Wins
11 regulation Losses
6 OT/SO Wins
3 OT/SO Losses

I myself have said (repeatedly) that I believe BB is on a 40 game job interview. There have been peaks and valleys this season, but as we approach 40 games I don't believe he has been convincing enough to deserve to commandeer this team through another Playoffs. I believe that based on last year's Playoffs performance, the burden of proof is on him to prove he can instill the winning formula (as opposed to him getting the benefit of the doubt).

So again, for those of you who "stand pat" (especially WRT BB), I ask out of curiosity, what is your performance threshold - if you're willing to share

Posted by: PSD1 | December 13, 2010 12:40 PM | Report abuse

Part of the problem with the team is the injuries. I know poo-poohing Sarge is a hobby around here, but his defensive skills are missed. Same with Green's offensive-defensive set. Carlson is Green 3 years ago: great offensively, prone to f-ups defensively and just not the substitute on the PP. Say what you well, but good defense begets good offense.

But, I say that its a good thing that they are having this slump if they can work through it. Say what you will, but last year we cruised to the President's Trophy and that got us.... I would rather us finish 8th in the conference and win the Cup.

But, if I was going to make a trade, I would get a good goalie. A really good goalie, and I would trade anyone for the right goalie, except 8, 52 or 19. I said before the season that goalies may be a problem, and I don't have confidence in either of them for a cup run.

Posted by: oldtimehockey | December 13, 2010 12:44 PM | Report abuse

Has anything been said on why their wasn't a goalie change in the second period last night. I thought for sure BB would have made the change to try to spark something.

Posted by: Capitals8 | December 13, 2010 12:45 PM | Report abuse

oldtime-

not sure I trust these 2 on a beer run, much less a long playoff run

Posted by: cadlecreek1 | December 13, 2010 12:46 PM | Report abuse

It is never as a coach I have not motivated these guys. See all the commercials and it tells you everything you need to know. He is selfish, blames the players and never accepts responsibility. He has no guts and after that interview last night I changed my mind and think he should go. Can you imagine that guy as your boss. throw everyone else under the bus but never say hey we have made mistakes as coaches. Even last year. After he got schooled by Montreal he never adjusted and blamed his players. He is a ridulous man. As a boss I would take resposnibility plain and simple. That in itself would motivate your players. BB is always looking to blame something or someone else. What a great guy.

Posted by: pkme | December 13, 2010 12:48 PM | Report abuse

Let's face reality folks. This is a group of players with lots of individual talent, but not enough willingness to play as a team, to grind out the tough wins. They all want to be flashy and brilliant on the ice. Winning in the NHL means winning ugly sometimes, and that requires sacrifice these players are not willing to make. It starts with the captain. Through over 30 games, he has 6...count them...6 blocked shots. That means he blocks a shot once every 5 to 6 games. With that kind of commitment to defense, we are getting what we deserve. Nothing will change until the attitude in the locker room changes -- and without a major trade to bring in someone who commands the respect of everyone in that locker room and who everyone will follow -- this team will be entertaining, but they will never hoist the cup. They need a Guerin type player -- and they need Ovie to be willing to follow. Not happening. We better enjoy the regular season, because that is as good as it will get.

Posted by: dan_comet | December 13, 2010 12:48 PM | Report abuse

I'll say it one more time...sports psychologist!

Posted by: capscoach

Nah, it's time to break up the party. Normally, teams can break out of slumps together, doing the little things on the ice, fighting for each other, sticking up for each other and pushing each other. When a captain goes out and lays it on the line, most teams rally behind them, that won't happen on this team because they don't play for each other. Did you see anything last night that convinced you that this team will follow the lead of it's captain?

Posted by: Fletch22 | December 13, 2010 12:48 PM | Report abuse

@FLDave

BB also said he needs to think about what to do next...personally I think it was wise not to respond while that angry.

I also think he was correct in saying that some of these guys need to stop feeling sorry for themselves...esp. Laich, Chimmy, Knuble, Fehr, MaJo, and Backie

Posted by: capscoach | December 13, 2010 12:48 PM | Report abuse

I would have been in favor of Stevie Y taking over this past offseason. But after watching the type of team he's constructed in Tampa, they're another team who doesn't finish checks so no thanks. If they make it to the playoffs I can't see them making a dent. They're a fairly soft team who is doing well because of their skill and speed but they lack top quality role players. Frequently they have a hard time getting into double digit hits in a game. Steve Downie usually has 3 or 4 hits in a game and the other 17 skaters combine for another 5 or 6.

Granted this is his first yr on the job but early results don't make me wish he'd come here instead of to Tampa. He's built a pretty unbalanced team.

Posted by: cstanton1 | December 13, 2010 12:49 PM | Report abuse

I too think the league has figured out a way to play against Boudreau's vaunted system. What has failed to happen is that the Caps have not adjusted top the league's adjustment. That's what good coaches do. That's what good players do. We'll see if they indeed adjust and end up being a better team for it.
Don't want Gabby to be fired. But he is over-confident in his system. He needs to be more flexible. try different things beside changing up the lines.
Now is the time to trade Semin and trade for Brad Richards (in separate deals). GEt youth and picks for Semin now and use them to acquire Richards and sign him ling term. He brings the missing 2C and leadership this team despartely needs.

Alos, DJ King, show Ovi how to throw a punch. I commend his effort and it was great to see him throw down, but he needs some coaching here. I give him credit, Dubinsky is no p***y. He's a beast. Would love to have Duby here.

Posted by: jmurray019 | December 13, 2010 12:50 PM | Report abuse

@cadlecreek
apparently Neuvy got sick just before the game, before a goalie could be called up. (possibly the flu based on the rest of the team.)

Katie mentioned this (coming from BB) in one of the previous articles. There basically no way BB would put Neuvy in.

Posted by: PSD1 | December 13, 2010 12:51 PM | Report abuse

Maybe the Caps should sign goalie Evgeni Nabokov who has parted with his KHL club. May not be a bad move?

Posted by: instinct227 | December 13, 2010 12:51 PM | Report abuse

it's all should start with ovi. if his teamates see that he is practicing, working hard, they're going to follow him. he is the leader and he should show it. and please BB, no more commercials.

Posted by: capsfan2007 | December 13, 2010 12:54 PM | Report abuse

Has anything been said on why their wasn't a goalie change in the second period last night. I thought for sure BB would have made the change to try to spark something.

Posted by: Capitals8


Nuevy got sick at the last minute and there was no time to call up Holtby.

@pkme

you people need to get over the commercials...they were shot before the season started! And even if they weren't it is a lame argument.

You hear what you want to hear...if he said something along the lines of "i need to do better" or something you would just use that as more of an excuse to fire him...so nothing he says would make you happy.

He said he needs to use today to think and find a new strategy for the team...he isn't shruggin off all the responsibility

Posted by: capscoach | December 13, 2010 12:55 PM | Report abuse

I am not sure what the answer is. The most concerning issue to me is that while Ovi, Semin, Backstrom and Green are in the early stages of their career they will not be young forever. I believe that a serious look by GMGM needs to happen soon in regards to consistent goal tending, defensive defense men and most notably coaching. I do hope that BB and the Capitals are successful this year but I think that GMGM needs to decide if they can be successful together.

It would be a shame to have such a great core group of players go through their prime playing years without a cup.

You saw Ovi's comments today that he does not see the need to blame individual players as they are all making mistakes. This appears to be in direct contradiction to what management is doing in the paper.

They really need to get in sync in a hurry or make a coaching change.

Posted by: fiskra | December 13, 2010 12:55 PM | Report abuse

This team was doomed from the minute Lisa Hilary left town. Blow up the squad and rebuild.

Posted by: SA-Town | December 13, 2010 12:55 PM | Report abuse

Ladies and Gentlemen...."your San Jose Capitals"!!!

2007 Playoff Bust [home loss in game 7]
2008 Playoff Bust [home loss in game 7]
2009 Playoff Bust [home loss in game 7]

BB must go!!

Posted by: rdondero123 | December 13, 2010 12:58 PM | Report abuse

1) BB has lost the team. How many more excuses are we going to hear that he has "read the riot act" ,etc etc
2) This team only knows one way to play, and other teams have them figured out. Boudreau doesn't apparently have the ability to change systems.
3) They will rebound and make the playoffs only to lose in rounds 1 or 2(again!)

Posted by: jmol2112 | December 13, 2010 12:58 PM | Report abuse

They need to start finishing checks, stop improvising and be stronger in the corners
----------------------------

that's why they extended Poti!

btw, this yr's past draft added more skill to the org. But kids like Caleb and Sam Carrier? yuck. Complete wasted draft picks. Sam Carrier makes Patrick McNeill look like Chris Pronger.

for an org without defensive dmen depth, how we can continue to spend draft picks on undersized finesse offensive dmen is beyond me. Its reckless drafting as far as I'm concerned. You keep ignoring high character hardnosed players in the draft and you end up in the situation we're in today.

Posted by: cstanton1 | December 13, 2010 12:59 PM | Report abuse

Smells a lot like "Butch" Cassidy around here.

Posted by: lylewimbledon | December 13, 2010 1:01 PM | Report abuse

The other change that needs to be made is the Ovie can no longer be seen as the building block of the team. You can't build around a winger. You can build around a great goaltender. You can build around a great D. You can even build around quality centers. No cup team has ever been built around a winger. As great as he is offensively, Ovie isn't good enough to be the cornerstone. If we don't get a top notch goaltender, completely upgrade the D, or get a first rate center, we will continue to be also rans and Ovie will be the greatest player never to win a cup.

Posted by: dan_comet | December 13, 2010 1:01 PM | Report abuse

He has lost control of the team. You could see it last year in the playoffs. He does not seem like he has composure either. he looks rattled half the time. Do not feel sorry for him. He has made millions of dollars at what he loves to do. He did a great job helping The Caps but it is long overdue for him to go.

Posted by: pkme | December 13, 2010 1:02 PM | Report abuse

I see the drama queens are out in full force today. Is it disturbing the Caps have lost 7 straight? Sure. Is it the end of the world? Nope.

Save your whining for the unlikely event the Caps don't make the playoffs.

As for getting rid of BB, what are you folks smoking? Unless Scotty Bowman's available, you're not going to find anyone better. We won the President's Cup last year--did BB suddenly forget how to coach?

If you need a problem to worry over--you have to understand you have 2 very young goalies playing in a system that thinks offense first, second, and third. These goalies tend to give up more than their share of soft goals and no set of goalies in the NHL give up more rebounds.

Posted by: getjiggly1 | December 13, 2010 1:02 PM | Report abuse

I understand in the heat of the moment after a game like last night that you can't really plan what you're going to say. But I thought BB should have realized the team had hit rock bottom and tried to say: "I have faith in these guys, and I know we'll get it worked out". Instead he does his usual song and dance routine "it's certainly not my fault"....

Posted by: kcbrichmond | December 13, 2010 1:02 PM | Report abuse

He said he needs to use today to think and find a new strategy for the team...he isn't shruggin off all the responsibility

Posted by: capscoach

It's not a lame argument. Do you not consider the fact the players see these commercials and then laugh behind his back, which would lead to some losing respect for the coach. If he's going to continue making a fool of himself on tv, and coming up small at inopportune times (playoffs), he deserves every criticism.

From the interview I saw, BB shrugged off all responsibility, saying that the players need to stop feeling sorry for themselves, and at one point he threw Varly under the bus and mentioned some soft goals.

Listen to other NHL head coaches talk, because they don't sound like BB.

Posted by: Fletch22 | December 13, 2010 1:03 PM | Report abuse

I've been for firing BB since the Pens series because of the way he handled adversity. Instead of calling practice to help his team improve their play, or just telling the media "WE need to play better, he started throwing players under the bus. It was Fedorov's fault, Jurcina's fault, Semin's fault, blah, blah blah.

When the Pens were down 2-0, Blysma didn't throw Scuderi and Gill under the bus because they couldn't stop Ovi. Instead, they quietly held a few practices to work on their main issue, the PP.

Publicly blaming certain players for losses does nothing but divide a team. And it's a cop out for a coach who doesn't have a clue.

Posted by: ablake70 | December 13, 2010 1:04 PM | Report abuse

He did a great job helping The Caps but it is long overdue for him to go.

Posted by: pkme

I can live with an argument like that, but when people are so disrespectful it is very frustrating.

Posted by: capscoach | December 13, 2010 1:05 PM | Report abuse

Listen to other NHL head coaches talk, because they don't sound like BB.

Posted by: Fletch22

actually they do.

Posted by: capscoach | December 13, 2010 1:07 PM | Report abuse

You know folks we're supposed to be a hockey town. How can we even think about having that label when anybody from the hockey world can come on these boards and see fans stating such garbage like "trade OV now"!

Really? He's the only one not named Hendricks or Erskine that gives a d@mn & is willing to do whatever it takes to win! He's doing everything he can to get this team going. It's not his fault they aren't responding.

It's just even more evidence that BB has lost the team. Sad to say but I've seen it a million times and this is exactly what it looks like.

It's not just missing MG & JS. This "problem" is longer than 6 games like many have mentioned. It's not that we had 6 rookies in the lineup last night (which begs to wonder why Brads & DJK were scratched even more). It's not just that 1/2 a dozen players have the flu.

Trading Semin also is absurd. While he isn't the physical force some want he is an elite talent that contributes all over the ice in all situations (5-5, SH, PP, OT & SO's). We can't score. Trading Semin would be a phenominal mistake.

Posted by: pokerface1208 | December 13, 2010 1:08 PM | Report abuse

capscoach

I am merely highlighting that the commercials make him look like a buffon who is after the money. He looks weak. If my boss was in those commercials I would say to myself what the heck. You are right we do sometimes pick on what we want to but still. Maybe Scotty Bowman or Vince Lombardi would do those type of commercials.

Posted by: pkme | December 13, 2010 1:08 PM | Report abuse

Alos, DJ King, show Ovi how to throw a punch. I commend his effort and it was great to see him throw down, but he needs some coaching here. I give him credit, Dubinsky is no p***y. He's a beast. Would love to have Duby here.

Posted by: jmurray019

i'd say teach Semin first, then work on Ovy. Our entire team could use some coaching in that regard. I haven't seen a bigger assembly of players who look like theyve never thrown a punch in their lives.

Can you imagine Sarge in a fight? Chimera's one of our better fighters and that's just downright shameful. Steckel, Laich, none of these guys know what they're doing out there. Gordo? forget it!

Matt Bradley and Matt Hendricks should be the 5th or 6th worst fighters on a team. Not the 3rd behind DJ and Erskine. If someone did a study on the Caps and their fights over the past decade, if you take Brash out of the equation I bet we haven't won over 5% of all the fights. We've probably lost 60% and had a draw in the others. And I like Hendricks dropping the gloves but frankly he's a terrible fighter comparatively and his fights don't do much to psych up the bench. He's largely a wrestler, he has no power to his punches. Sean Avery could beat up any of our middleweights. And he's not even in the league of Boyle, Boogy, and Prust or even Ryan Callahan, an underrated fighter in his own right.

Posted by: cstanton1 | December 13, 2010 1:09 PM | Report abuse

it is a shame, but we are getting to the point where canning Boudreau has to be a viable option.

mcphee must have a list of replacements ready.

i'm not saying fire him yet, but BB very well could have become ineffective or somehow lost the locker room.

don't fire him yet - but definitely keep it top of mind.....

Posted by: CF11555 | December 13, 2010 1:09 PM | Report abuse

SAOTI - notice my lil shout out to you buddy! LOL!

"he is an elite talent that contributes all over the ice"

Posted by: pokerface1208 | December 13, 2010 1:11 PM | Report abuse

Hockey Night in Canada interviewed Babcock prior to the Wings/Habs game on Friday. When asked about what happened in their recent loss to Nashville, Babcock replied with:

"The coaching staff weren't fully prepared. We didn't do an adequate job of preparing the players and, as a result, the players were not able to execute the game plan. It is on us to have the team ready, and we failed to do that".

Obviously I could not remember word for word, but that is the gist. After that interview, the Wings then went out and beat Montreal, and have since beat New Jersey as well. Anyways, my point is this: Babcock is, without a doubt, the best coach in the league. He has won a lot of things and CONSTANTLY has the Wings near the top of the standings. When have you ever heard BB give an interview like this? As others have said, he is quick to rely on excuses (hot goaltending, etc) or blame his stars, but does not often (or ever) call himself out.

Maybe he thinks there is nothing wrong from a coaching standpoint and, if that is the case, then it is definitely time for him to go.

Posted by: Aldred15 | December 13, 2010 1:13 PM | Report abuse

Lebrun quoting an unsubstantiated rumor that Hitchcock will be taking over after BB.

Posted by: jakopz | December 13, 2010 1:13 PM | Report abuse

capscoach

I am merely highlighting that the commercials make him look like a buffon who is after the money. He looks weak. If my boss was in those commercials I would say to myself what the heck. You are right we do sometimes pick on what we want to but still. Maybe Scotty Bowman or Vince Lombardi would do those type of commercials.

Posted by: pkme


I agree he looks like an idiot, but 1st I guarantee he had to get permission from Ted to do those, 2nd I don't think anyone would care about the commercials if we were playing well, and 3rd...have a sense of humor...the one of him in the jump suit and him smashing a penguin are funny.

And I GUARANTEE his commercials have had no impact on the teams performance

Posted by: capscoach | December 13, 2010 1:14 PM | Report abuse

Trading Semin sounds like a perfectly stupid idea. Tading OVI sounds stupid also. Tading Green or Backstrom is not rational either. However everyone else on this team with the exception of Carlson and MJ would be off limits. Maybe even Alzner.

Posted by: pkme | December 13, 2010 1:15 PM | Report abuse

@pkme
@kcbrichmond

pkme, I finally believe you. BB never takes
a shot at himself for not having the guys ready to play. He's a true weenie. He's done. He will not coach in the NHL again.
The "cUp holder" commercial is outrageous considering the WAY he preps his teams.

Kcbrichmond, Can you imagine the look on Poti's face if we brought in Keenan ?

Erskine and Bradley would be smiling if Keenan came through the door, because they're really the only two guys who will pay the price to win 16 INJURED in the spring. (Ovi would pay the price too. Sorry Ovi)

When did Brooks go wimpy on us ??

BB has to go. The "wimp bug" has hit the whole team.

Posted by: Hunterforcoach | December 13, 2010 1:16 PM | Report abuse

I guarantee you McPhee is drafting a list of replacement coaches, if he has not already done so.

We'll see - but BB is close to losing his job....

Posted by: CF11555 | December 13, 2010 1:16 PM | Report abuse

"We won the President's Cup last year--did BB suddenly forget how to coach?"

---

What good did the President's Trophy do us when it really mattered - the playoffs?

Posted by: VTDuffman | December 13, 2010 1:16 PM | Report abuse

Pkme: You really ought to quit harping on the commercials. The players understand it's about the $$$ and they'd happily do them if they had the opportunity. After all, Ovi toting around Donovan McNabb's fridge certainly isn't Oscar-worthy.

Here are some possible solutions: vary the PP lineup more--we need 2 shifts every PP, not one.

Posted by: getjiggly1 | December 13, 2010 1:17 PM | Report abuse

it is a shame, but we are getting to the point where canning Boudreau has to be a viable option.

mcphee must have a list of replacements ready.

i'm not saying fire him yet, but BB very well could have become ineffective or somehow lost the locker room.

don't fire him yet - but definitely keep it top of mind.....

Posted by: CF11555 |

This is a reasonable response to the BB situation.

Posted by: capscoach | December 13, 2010 1:17 PM | Report abuse

actually they do.

Posted by: capscoach

So it's standard practice to throw your players under the bus? I'm not saying coaches don't do this, but BB does it regularly.

Posted by: Fletch22 | December 13, 2010 1:17 PM | Report abuse

As for getting rid of BB, what are you folks smoking? Unless Scotty Bowman's available, you're not going to find anyone better. We won the President's Cup last year--did BB suddenly forget how to coach?

--------------------------------

no, the rest of the league got better and the gap between his team and other teams have been closed,and longstanding bad habits have finally come a calling. Which prevents his skilled unbalanced team from winning games despite giving a 20 min effort like they did in many games last season. And its too bad they don't factor in playoff hockey when they assign awards.

Norv Turner's a good offensive coordinator, and a terrible head coach.

Bruce is in over his head. He and George have been determined to create a winning team in their own vision, ignoring some very basic hockey principles. Now they're not quite as sure of themselves I'm guessing.

Posted by: cstanton1 | December 13, 2010 1:18 PM | Report abuse

Wow. Cant believe change the coach is even a choice? he turns the team around mid-season and they make the playoff's. Then has the best record in the NHL the next year and yes, loses first round up 3-1. (see the 1979 Baltinore Orioles on losing 3-1 leads). Thye had the best record in the NHL again until this losing streak, and now it's change the coach? make some adjustments, practice better, get the team attacking again and a regular rotation and they will be fine. Maybe no Presidents trophy this year, but I'll take playoff wins and a Stanley Cup over that any day.

Posted by: 44RIGGO | December 13, 2010 1:19 PM | Report abuse

Capscoach.

You are right noone would rag on BB for the commercials if they actually got past the 2nd round of the playoffs. I do have a sense of humour but not right now. If unemployment in this Country was 4% than Obama's appraoval ratings would be 60% and not one person would pick on him for golfing.

Posted by: pkme | December 13, 2010 1:21 PM | Report abuse

@Vermont

Thanks for the vote of approval. Let's get some guys that we know ,FIRST HAND, that have character, heart, drive, a work ethic, etc.

HUNTER AND KONO !!!

Why did GMGM ship a guy with Kono's guts and ability to the Av's. If he had not gotten hurt, that move would have looked silly. That guy was tough and motivated !!

Posted by: Hunterforcoach | December 13, 2010 1:22 PM | Report abuse

Trading Semin sounds like a perfectly stupid idea. Tading OVI sounds stupid also. Tading Green or Backstrom is not rational either. However everyone else on this team with the exception of Carlson and MJ would be off limits. Maybe even Alzner.

Posted by: pkme

Semin is a UFA. How much, for how many years do want him? 10 years, $6.5 per. That's what he is gonna get.

Cripple the team for years to come, sign Semin. How exactly is that absurd?

The OV and Semin show needs to end.

Posted by: underpants2 | December 13, 2010 1:23 PM | Report abuse

And I GUARANTEE his commercials have had no impact on the teams performance

Posted by: capscoach

maybe not. But there's nothing more irritating than watching Bruce's fat mug littering my TV screen and cracking his one-liners when all I want to do is rip his head off.

I think he thinks he's funnier than he really is. He annoys the daylights out of me. His head's gotten too big and I don't buy his self-deprecating act. "Fills me with the urge to defecate!"

PFloyd: The Trial (1979)

Posted by: cstanton1 | December 13, 2010 1:25 PM | Report abuse

Trading Semin sounds like a perfectly stupid idea. Tading OVI sounds stupid also. Tading Green or Backstrom is not rational either. However everyone else on this team with the exception of Carlson and MJ would be off limits. Maybe even Alzner.

Posted by: pkme

Semin is a freakin UFA after this year. You want him for 10 more? He's probably gonna get $6.5m per year. That will cripple this team.

How is this idea absurd? Trading OV, yes, ridiculous, never. But Semin's contract makes him very tradeable.

This OV and Semin show must end for this team to win a Championship, period.

Posted by: underpants2 | December 13, 2010 1:27 PM | Report abuse

Memo to McPhee: 4 To Dos...

#1 Trade Green, Fehr for Spezza + something(not that he is great, but he will do well with Semin and Perrault as LW). Lets give this a try and see what it gets...

Ovechkin - Backstrom - Knuble
Perrault - Spezza - Semin
Hendricks - Gordon - A. Gordon
Chimera - Steckel - Bradley/King

Poti (PP1) - Carlson (PP1 QB)
Alzner - Schultz
Erskine (PP2) - Sloan (PP2 QB)

Fahey, Hannan = relievers

#2. Fire BB - Replace with Bob Hartley. He has the Herhsey history, Jacques Martin protege. 4 consecutive Conference Finals and 1 Stanley Cup with Avs in first 4 years. That guy was FIRED in December when the team started 10-8-9 in the fifth season. Wow! And, we think Boudreau should get a pass. Boudreau has one series win and 3 choke jobs in 3 years. Hartley is the right answer at this time -- he can be Phil Jackson for Ovechkin after the short, bald and round Doug Collins we have had for 2+ years.

#3. MaJo to Hershey to learn the N. American game on the Bears watch

#4. I am one more missed assignment from calling the Hannan for Fleischmann trade a disaster for us - once again McPhee got his pocket picked (that 2nd rounder for Corvo will be this year as ongoing reminder of his disastrous deal-making). Hannan is either over the hill, or just plain mediocre, or in his defense still learning the system. The To-Do on this guy is to limit his TOI...and play Sloan more.

Posted by: Political_Stratgst | December 13, 2010 1:27 PM | Report abuse

Memo to McPhee: 4 To Dos...

#1 Trade Green, Fehr for Spezza + something(not that he is great, but he will do well with Semin and Perrault as LW). Lets give this a try and see what it gets...

Ovechkin - Backstrom - Knuble
Perrault - Spezza - Semin
Hendricks - Gordon - A. Gordon
Chimera - Steckel - Bradley/King

Poti (PP1) - Carlson (PP1 QB)
Alzner - Schultz
Erskine (PP2) - Sloan (PP2 QB)

Fahey, Hannan = relievers

#2. Fire BB - Replace with Bob Hartley. He has the Herhsey history, Jacques Martin protege. 4 consecutive Conference Finals and 1 Stanley Cup with Avs in first 4 years. That guy was FIRED in December when the team started 10-8-9 in the fifth season. Wow! And, we think Boudreau should get a pass. Boudreau has one series win and 3 choke jobs in 3 years. Hartley is the right answer at this time -- he can be Phil Jackson for Ovechkin after the short, bald and round Doug Collins we have had for 2+ years.

#3. MaJo to Hershey to learn the N. American game on the Bears watch

#4. I am one more missed assignment from calling the Hannan for Fleischmann trade a disaster for us - once again McPhee got his pocket picked (that 2nd rounder for Corvo will be this year as ongoing reminder of his disastrous deal-making). Hannan is either over the hill, or just plain mediocre, or in his defense still learning the system. The To-Do on this guy is to limit his TOI...and play Sloan more.

Posted by: Political_Stratgst | December 13, 2010 1:27 PM | Report abuse

1) This streak has a eerily similar feel to the streak before Hanlon was canned. Then, even Ovechkin was out of sorts/not playing like himself and GMGM finally had to make a change
2) I just don't think BB (regardless of his regular season record) is the man to get them to he next level.
3) He was a great choice to replace Hanlon, but I think he has outlived his effectiveness and this streak and the playoff failures are merely a magnification of where he is lacking

Posted by: jmol2112 | December 13, 2010 1:28 PM | Report abuse

think he thinks he's funnier than he really is. He annoys the daylights out of me. His head's gotten too big and I don't buy his self-deprecating act. "Fills me with the urge to defecate!"

PFloyd: The Trial (1979)

Posted by: cstanton1

But admittedly your opinion is biased...I doubt he thinks he is funny. If you read his book you see that he just kind of accepts that is an adult dork...the commercials are supposed to be stupid.

Posted by: capscoach | December 13, 2010 1:28 PM | Report abuse

I'm glad to see a majority of fans in the poll are not hitting the panic button. Would it be nice to win a President's Trophy again? Sure, but if it's accomplanied by another 1st round exit, does it matter? The Caps as currently constituted will turn this around, probably will win the Southeast as well. But even if they don't, the main objective is a good run in the playoffs. As long as you're peaking in April, that's all that matters. And seriously, do those of you who are panicking not think the Caps will finish in the top 8 in the East? Ask the Habs if they needed any more than that last year.

Posted by: BillyBob4 | December 13, 2010 1:28 PM | Report abuse

It is okay for the players to act like a clown in commercials because they are not the BOSS. I think they need to start sending players to Hershey for conditioning stints. If a player plays badly send him To Hershey and bring up someone from Hershey. Stop the yapping Gabby and just discipline the guys. you do not have to make a proclamation or throw your team under the boss.

Posted by: pkme | December 13, 2010 1:29 PM | Report abuse

Lebrun quoting an unsubstantiated rumor that Hitchcock will be taking over after BB.

Posted by: jakopz

Interesting. Maybe he'll put in a word for Umberger.

Posted by: Fletch22 | December 13, 2010 1:29 PM | Report abuse

"Maybe no Presidents trophy this year, but I'll take playoff wins and a Stanley Cup over that any day."

---

What makes you think a BB coached team can win playoff games and Cups?

Posted by: VTDuffman | December 13, 2010 1:29 PM | Report abuse

it is a shame, but we are getting to the point where canning Boudreau has to be a viable option.

mcphee must have a list of replacements ready.

i'm not saying fire him yet, but BB very well could have become ineffective or somehow lost the locker room.

don't fire him yet - but definitely keep it top of mind.....

Posted by: CF11555

Well said, CF. I'm very interested to see what happens now, because Bruce must know that he is starting to be on the hot seat. I'm curious to see how he reacts. I bet he'll just change up the lines. That always works.

Posted by: TheDoubleAlex | December 13, 2010 1:31 PM | Report abuse

Why did GMGM ship a guy with Kono's guts and ability to the Av's
-------------------------

two reasons

1) Kono was fed up with Jagr and requested a trade

2) The Caps coveted an extremely soft one-dimensional skilled player by the name of Jonas Johannsen.

we know how that worked out. McPhee was very high on JJ. Or he was just very high when he made that trade

Compare that to the Flames who were able to pluck Robyn Regehr from the Avs farm system when they traded them Theo Fleury. Led to a Cup run v Tampa.

Posted by: cstanton1 | December 13, 2010 1:31 PM | Report abuse

@getjiggly

Boy, are you clueless. Ovi and McNabb are KNOWN BEASTS. They can do what they want.
BB is an AHL coach in over his head. Most of the "cUp potential" coaches in the league would never do those ads.

I don't like McNabb, but I respect him !!

BB is a wimp, who never calls HIMSELF out.
His postgames are unwatchable at this point.

PKME is right. Bruce never mentioned himself. BB is as big a floater as FLUSH. No wonder he likes these wimpy guys.

Posted by: Hunterforcoach | December 13, 2010 1:31 PM | Report abuse

One other thing:

If McPhee fires BB during this 24/7 stuff it's complete bullsh!t. BB has done a lot for this team, and should be treated with respect. Any respect I had for Ted would be immediately lost.

Oh yeah, sgm3, where are you hiding?

Posted by: underpants2 | December 13, 2010 1:33 PM | Report abuse

@pokerface

Yes I noticed...and much appreciated. Work is just getting in my way of posting in a timely manner today. =P haha

Posted by: SeminAllOverTheIce | December 13, 2010 1:36 PM | Report abuse

this is just an adversity the capitals are experiencing right now. they have to stick together and use this in a positive way. they should be better rather than feeling sorry for themselves, coaches included. work harder guys, even in practice.

Posted by: capsfan2007 | December 13, 2010 1:36 PM | Report abuse

Caps need a 1-2Center real bad, period.
Sadly, because of the hole we're in right now, GMGM is going to substatially overpay for it.

Posted by: guer_j | December 13, 2010 1:37 PM | Report abuse

But admittedly your opinion is biased...I doubt he thinks he is funny.

Posted by: capscoach

"I'm living a life of illusion"
Joe Walsh - 1981

You watch enough of his Q and A sessions with the press and its pretty easy to see how pleased he is with himself. Exbibit A - his response to Umberger's comments.

Most coaches would've just ignored it but Bruce couldn't resist throwing a dig back at Umberger and basically said he has enough rings and trophies not to take Umberger seriously.

Posted by: cstanton1 | December 13, 2010 1:37 PM | Report abuse

@Cstanton

Man, it is good to have you back to remind everyone about what REALLY HAPPENED. JJ, another wimpy GMGM selection. The beat goes on.

Posted by: Hunterforcoach | December 13, 2010 1:37 PM | Report abuse

"The Caps were always known for battling 60+ mins win or lose. They punished people left and right. I don't care about the skill level. They need to start finishing checks, stop improvising and be stronger in the corners."

Ha! The Caps have been known to be the exact opposite. That is to play really well in spurts or for a period or maybe two. They rarely play all three periods to their full capacity, if ever. Luckily, usually those spurts put enough pucks into the net to produce victories. Now, the bounces aren't going their way and they are pressing for sure.

They also have never been an overly physical team either. So, your desire for that to happen isn't likely.

Posted by: rphilli721 | December 13, 2010 1:37 PM | Report abuse

no, the rest of the league got better and the gap between his team and other teams have been closed,and longstanding bad habits have finally come a calling
---------------------------------
hahahahahahhha.

Right--all of a sudden the league got better en masse. Wanna buy some beachfront in Oklahoma?

In fact, very few teams got better and that was because of off-season moves.

Posted by: getjiggly1 | December 13, 2010 1:38 PM | Report abuse

I like BB but he has been outcoached in the playoffs the last three years. There are other issues as well, such as BBs tendency to give MG too much ice time and to play Ovi on the point for the PP, where he is a defensive liability and is not in a position where he scores most of his goals. The bottom line is that the coaching staff under BB has failed to make in-game adjustments in order to counter what the other team is doing to stifle the Caps offense. There is nothing to suggest that the result in next Spring’s playoffs will be any different than it has been the last three years and that would be a shame.

Posted by: MReilly9 | December 13, 2010 1:38 PM | Report abuse

There is always some excuse with this team. The bottom line is this: even before the six game skid the Caps were not playing up their potential. They accrued points...but looked awful doing it. By my count, they'v only played three games this season where they gave a strong effort for a full 60 minutes. This losing streak was inevitable. I'm not sure if firing Boudreau will help, or make things worse. Frankly, I'm more concerned with the immaturity of many star players on this team and that they are never held accountable. I will say this: Boudreau has no concept of how to adapt his team in-game...or from game-to-game...and that is killing us. So...maybe it is time to look elsewhere. But I could understand if mgt waits to see the outcome of the post-season (which now looks like an inevitable repeat of the last 3 seasons).

Posted by: dingram3 | December 13, 2010 1:40 PM | Report abuse

If McPhee fires BB during this 24/7 stuff it's complete bullsh!t. BB has done a lot for this team, and should be treated with respect. Any respect I had for Ted would be immediately lost.

Posted by: underpants2

If it becomes clear Bruce needs to go, then get rid of him. Don't keep him around because they're filming a show. Firing him while they're filming isn't disrespectful. They have to do what's best for the team. They can't say "Oh, well, I think he needs to go, but let's wait another 2 weeks and 6 games until they're done filming and give the coach we bring in that much less time to turn this around".

Posted by: TheDoubleAlex | December 13, 2010 1:40 PM | Report abuse

@rphilli721

He means back when we had Stevens, Langway, Hunter, Tinordi. Kolzig, etc

Get a clue !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Posted by: Hunterforcoach | December 13, 2010 1:41 PM | Report abuse

Anyone read Ted's Take. Folks be respectful of Ted if commenting on his site for real. The man has tried and he does have heart unlike BB. Also the more disreptful you sound the less credibility you have. I know we are ragging on BB but most of it is because he never takes responsibility or is never accountable. Seems to lack honesty and a humble nature in defeat. He always runs his mouth about what player looks like crap. Can you imagine everytime you screwed up your boss would then go and tell all of your customers that we suck because of saleperson a. You have to think that the players are sick of his act. Just because a reporter asks a question does not mean you have to answer that question.

Posted by: pkme | December 13, 2010 1:41 PM | Report abuse

Who knew Tomas fleischmann was the greatest player in Caps history?!

Posted by: noslok | December 13, 2010 1:42 PM | Report abuse

Those of you that are still dreaming Cup need to put down whatever it is you are smoking. Unless this team makes some major changes, you are going to have to dream to think getting through the first round of the playoffs. The Caps are a great collection of talent, but a horrible TEAM. Unless that changes, they are going nowhere but down.

Posted by: dan_comet | December 13, 2010 1:43 PM | Report abuse

thanks Huntsy.

I think what you're really seeing here is just the culmination of an unbalanced draft strategy, an unbalanced team concept, and a sheer arrogance that they could reinvent the hockey wheel.

The playoff upsets have been disconcerting I'm sure but they've been able to chalk it up to various ambiguous notions. They've missed the chance to learn valuable lessons from each series loss. This streak though has got to be the most disconcerting because they've always been able to hang their hat on being able to score goals at will during the reg season. If they don't get that part of their game figured out, it devalues their entire vision.

Posted by: cstanton1 | December 13, 2010 1:44 PM | Report abuse

capscoach,

I'm back (briefly). As I said, I'm not mad; I don't take their losses personally. They are the ones who should be doing that. I do like to come on here though and read what everyone else is saying, I learn some stuff and I give my opinion on what I see based on my experiences with playing team sports (ice-hockey not being one of them).

Posted by: FloridaCapsFan | December 13, 2010 1:45 PM | Report abuse

Spezza has $7M per year for 5 more years per capgeek. That's a boat load of money that could come back to haunt us. If we could get someone in his mold without the cap hit, that would be preferable. It wouldn't happen, but Brandon Dubinsky would look good as our 2C.

I think we need to shore up our bottom 6. Maybe we could steal Clarkson from the Devils, they're desperate for cap space. Offer up a draft pick and prospect. We don't have a real checking line at this point, and it shows.

The other guy I like is Konopka. The Isles are going nowhere, if we could get him and jettison Steckle (and maybe Gordo), our forth line would be King, Konopka, Brads.

Posted by: Fletch22 | December 13, 2010 1:45 PM | Report abuse

@cstanton

Your hockey knowledge is there (much better than mine admitedly)my problem is that anyone who is so unwavering in their beliefs/opinions looses credibility in my book. To be so convinced that you are always right is a dangerous trait (not here but in life in general)

Not saying this as a critcism or even an argument, just the reason that despite your knowledge, I have the urge to argue with you :)

Posted by: capscoach | December 13, 2010 1:45 PM | Report abuse

to PSD1 - I voted "stand pat", beause:
1) trade is definitely not what is required at the moment - there were enough allready and the chemistry is quite bad. Mr. Hannan's story is a good example.
2) I was one of the first to vote for coach change after the loss to Habs. But now there is too much risk to ruine what is still left and miss playoffs.

The coach firing point will be when there will be a risk to miss a playoff spot.

Posted by: Michael01a | December 13, 2010 1:46 PM | Report abuse

Right--all of a sudden the league got better en masse. Wanna buy some beachfront in Oklahoma?

-----------------

no, but i'll sell you an even sillier idea. I'll build you a team bereft of grit, make them a run and gun team, and promise you a dynasty.

sold?

Posted by: cstanton1 | December 13, 2010 1:46 PM | Report abuse

capscoach,

I'm back (briefly). As I said, I'm not mad; I don't take their losses personally. They are the ones who should be doing that. I do like to come on here though and read what everyone else is saying, I learn some stuff and I give my opinion on what I see based on my experiences with playing team sports (ice-hockey not being one of them).

Posted by: FloridaCapsFan

Sorry if i misinterpreted!

Posted by: capscoach | December 13, 2010 1:47 PM | Report abuse

Hunterforcoach: Oh yeah, how convincing. The Caps are failing because BB does TV commercials. But McNabb's a beast--who do you think the Skins will face in the Super Bowl this year?

And BB was an AHL lifer; we all know that with a pedigree like that he can't win. Look at Scotty Bowman, he was an AHL lifer as well. That's why Wayne Gretzky coached the Coyotes to all those Cups.

Posted by: getjiggly1 | December 13, 2010 1:48 PM | Report abuse

Are the Caps on a 6 game losing streak? Yup
Are they playing awful? Yup
How good were they actually playing before all this happened? Mediocre but were winning games

Ill go back to what I said on July 5th. Every other team in the East got better. We got younger and worse. We still have no 2C. So rather than people going overboard and jumping off the ledge, and rather than people getting excited when we bounce out of it when 2 in a row....let's face it: The Washington Capitals as currently consituted even when completely healthy, are just a slightly above average hockey team.

Everyone should thank God that Neuvirth stood on his head for the first 5 weeks otherwise we'd bee in a whole lot of trouble. Could a coaching change work? Yeah it might give everyone a little jumpstart. But the problem is the players and more specifically the F's. We only have 4 guys that are actually top 6 talented: Ovi, Backs, Semin and Knuble. Then its a whole lot of 3rd and 4th line talent.

Posted by: ThePat | December 13, 2010 1:49 PM | Report abuse

think we need to shore up our bottom 6. Maybe we could steal Clarkson from the Devils, they're desperate for cap space. Offer up a draft pick and prospect. We don't have a real checking line at this point, and it shows.

The other guy I like is Konopka. The Isles are going nowhere, if we could get him and jettison Steckle (and maybe Gordo), our forth line would be King, Konopka, Brads.

-------------------

both players are agitators.

The Caps don't believe in agitators. Out of a 115 players they've drafted under McPhee I think one true agitator. And then promptly traded him away.

So while I agree with you that Clarkson and Konopka would be perfect players to pull over, unless you go hire a John Stevens, Kevin Dineen, Hunter, Kono type at coach, those moves aren't likely to occur.

Posted by: cstanton1 | December 13, 2010 1:50 PM | Report abuse

@getjiggly1

Amen!

Posted by: capscoach | December 13, 2010 1:51 PM | Report abuse

@Rphilly721

He means back when we had Stevens, Langway, Hunter, May, Tinordi, Locker,
Dino, etc.

Mario always said that you knew it was going to be a tough night when you went to the Spectrum or the Caps Center.

So, you must be a new hockey fan.

Posted by: Hunterforcoach | December 13, 2010 1:54 PM | Report abuse

Ill go back to what I said on July 5th. Every other team in the East got better. We got younger and worse. We still have no 2C. So rather than people going overboard and jumping off the ledge, and rather than people getting excited when we bounce out of it when 2 in a row....let's face it: The Washington Capitals as currently consituted even when completely healthy, are just a slightly above average hockey team.

Everyone should thank God that Neuvirth stood on his head for the first 5 weeks otherwise we'd bee in a whole lot of trouble. Could a coaching change work? Yeah it might give everyone a little jumpstart. But the problem is the players and more specifically the F's. We only have 4 guys that are actually top 6 talented: Ovi, Backs, Semin and Knuble. Then its a whole lot of 3rd and 4th line talent.

Posted by: ThePat

You may be right...but if the talent just isn't there, why fire the coach? We have a ton of youth, and no 2nd line C...it was showing from the get go, and now we are in a slump...I THINK reiterate THINK this slump may help our team in the long run...only time will tell

Posted by: capscoach | December 13, 2010 1:54 PM | Report abuse

both players are agitators.

The Caps don't believe in agitators. Out of a 115 players they've drafted under McPhee I think one true agitator. And then promptly traded him away.

So while I agree with you that Clarkson and Konopka would be perfect players to pull over, unless you go hire a John Stevens, Kevin Dineen, Hunter, Kono type at coach, those moves aren't likely to occur.

Posted by: cstanton1

Agreed. Even then, assuming GM is still employed here, it wouldn't happen.

Posted by: Fletch22 | December 13, 2010 1:55 PM | Report abuse

Bereft of grit?

Suddenly "grit" has become this magical pixiedust that every team has got to have. Odd, nobody can define it aside from the zealous belief that you absolutely gotta have it.

OK, let's play the devil's advocate here. Let's all pretend we believe in the power of "grit." First question, exactly how do we instill into our existing players? Second, if we cannot infuse our players with "grit"--where do we find players with this magical substance? Please be specific. I see far too many of these comments like 'we need to trade Green and Fehr for Spezza' as if Spezza's on the market.

Posted by: getjiggly1 | December 13, 2010 1:58 PM | Report abuse

While getting a few agitators would help, the bigger problem is coaching. The Caps do not have a shut-down line, which still befuddles me. The coach flips lines so often there is no continuity. The BB riddle has been solved and the players know it. The players are not playing a system so much as tuning out the coach and playing pond hockey. Move on, get a disciplinarian with good playoff experience, who knows the merit of a third line and veteran players.

Posted by: JIMALLCAPS2 | December 13, 2010 2:00 PM | Report abuse

Bob Hartley please pick up your phone!

Posted by: beforeitstoolate | December 13, 2010 2:00 PM | Report abuse

@cstanton

Your hockey knowledge is there (much better than mine admitedly)my problem is that anyone who is so unwavering in their beliefs/opinions looses credibility in my book. To be so convinced that you are always right is a dangerous trait (not here but in life in general)

Not saying this as a critcism or even an argument, just the reason that despite your knowledge, I have the urge to argue with you :)

Posted by: capscoach | December 13, 2010 1:45 PM | Report abuse
-------------------------------------------
You cross the line when you make things personal like calling the coach or Ted fat, bald etc. What does that have to do with anythihg? If they were skinny we'd be winning? All credibility & respect is gone when you lob personal insults.

Posted by: pokerface1208 | December 13, 2010 2:01 PM | Report abuse

Suddenly "grit" has become this magical pixiedust that every team has got to have. Odd, nobody can define it aside from the zealous belief that you absolutely gotta have it.

--------------

it gets defined over and over. Where have you been jiggly? You wanna come on here and create some thought-provoking, at least be accurate in your statements.

Posted by: cstanton1 | December 13, 2010 2:01 PM | Report abuse

@capscoach

I said firing the coach may provide a jumpstart, it may not. Im not for firing him right now. But a lot of pieces are missing from the puzzle and my point is the slump is a good wake up call for fans. We arent that good. There will be no Presidents trophy and quite possibly no division title this season unless other parts are brought in. Specifically players that know "HOW TO WIN".

Posted by: ThePat | December 13, 2010 2:02 PM | Report abuse

You cross the line when you make things personal like calling the coach or Ted fat, bald etc. What does that have to do with anythihg? If they were skinny we'd be winning? All credibility & respect is gone when you lob personal insults.

Posted by: pokerface1208


Wait...r u talking to cstanton or me? b/c I never did that.

Posted by: capscoach | December 13, 2010 2:03 PM | Report abuse

OK, let's play the devil's advocate here. Let's all pretend we believe in the power of "grit." First question, exactly how do we instill into our existing players? Second, if we cannot infuse our players with "grit"--where do we find players with this magical substance? Please be specific
-------------------------

magical substance? you mean the same magical substance that exists in dozens and dozens of players in this league? I'm not even sure you know what you're asking.

Its not a fairy dust you can go sprinkle around. You have to have an organizational philosophy that emphasizes it. That then gets reflected in the players you draft, sign, or trade for. Its NO different than having an organizational philosophy that the Caps have with regards to offensive defensemen or highly skilled forwards (with little regard for other qualities).

Is that an undefinable "magical" quality to you as well?

if you think grit is that mystical and its not definable or quantifiable in any real sense, you've apparently only watched Caps hockey and nothing else over the past few yrs.

Posted by: cstanton1 | December 13, 2010 2:05 PM | Report abuse

On a lighter note...anyone notice the hilarious pic of Ovie punching Dubinsky and Poti standing near them with this confused look on his face?

Posted by: capscoach | December 13, 2010 2:06 PM | Report abuse

Bereft of grit?

Suddenly "grit" has become this magical pixiedust that every team has got to have. Odd, nobody can define it aside from the zealous belief that you absolutely gotta have it.

OK, let's play the devil's advocate here. Let's all pretend we believe in the power of "grit." First question, exactly how do we instill into our existing players? Second, if we cannot infuse our players with "grit"--where do we find players with this magical substance? Please be specific. I see far too many of these comments like 'we need to trade Green and Fehr for Spezza' as if Spezza's on the market.

Posted by: getjiggly1

I think someone famous once said 'I know it when I see it'. You don't instill grit, you either have it or you don't.

I gave some examples of grit a few posts above (Clarkson, Konopka, even Dubinsky). Take a look and see if you agree.

Posted by: Fletch22 | December 13, 2010 2:07 PM | Report abuse

Is it just my imagination or the veterans - Knuble, Laich, Fehr, Poti, Chimera are demotivated by Ovi captaincy - he is the star has fun and gets all the money - so they make little efforts to step up and actually don't play for him?

Posted by: Michael01a | December 13, 2010 2:07 PM | Report abuse

"OK, let's play the devil's advocate here. Let's all pretend we believe in the power of "grit." First question, exactly how do we instill into our existing players? Second, if we cannot infuse our players with "grit"--where do we find players with this magical substance?"

---

Do you really not know what gritty play looks like or any gritty players in this league? Or are you just being deliberately obtuse?

Posted by: VTDuffman | December 13, 2010 2:07 PM | Report abuse

a. gordon just said on his twitter he's back to hershey...

Posted by: pwaiter | December 13, 2010 2:09 PM | Report abuse

i said it about the sad little fat man. And I stand by it. Also, I don't lose ALL credibility when I reduce myself to those statements. I have the stats to back that up.

Posted by: cstanton1 | December 13, 2010 2:09 PM | Report abuse

@get jiggly
@capscoach

You must not watch much football. But, McNabb has taken a pounding over the years as a player. I don't care about the superbowl. I'm saying he has brass B's. He can be a silly as he wants in a commercial.
BB has done nothing to have that kind of elbow room. It makes us look "DUMB" as a francise, because we don't carry cUps here. All of the rest of the old Patrick Division have "BIG cUp holders". We hold golf clubs !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


Gretzky was in over his head as a coach too.

It is real obvious to the long time hockey fans that this guy (BB) knows nothing about leading men to a cUp. It takes an enormous effort that this coach and half the players don't have the DNA to pull off. 16 WINS WHILE INJURED IS NOT GOING TO HAPPEN UNDER BB AND GMGM

The commercials make us look like "bush leaguers". The Caps organization knows nothing about putting togeather "A BIG CUP HOLDER TEAM". Google the playoff results for the last 25 years. You're a "Rock the Red newbie", who I doubt watched any of the players beyond our exit.

Posted by: Hunterforcoach | December 13, 2010 2:10 PM | Report abuse

As I've said, this team has no heart, no fight, no core, no hate. We need some hate. Crosby starts a fight two wks ago the Pens reel off 10+ strght wins, Ovi gets in fight, emplores the bench to come to life & nothing. Where was BB backing him up? This is a poorly constructed team, role players who don't have a role, too finesse, too european. Add to that the fact that we've been solved by a neutral zone trap 1-3-1 and a coach who can't adjust = we're finished, we'll never get past the flyers and pens. BB is not an Xs and Os coach. Oh yeh, Hannan sucks, my god what did our scouts see in that guy, esp at 3.5mm? We've got 13mm in Green, Shultz and Hannan. That's a disaster.

Posted by: collegehockeyfan | December 13, 2010 2:11 PM | Report abuse

@pwaiter

bet he was happy to get called up for that game!

Posted by: capscoach | December 13, 2010 2:11 PM | Report abuse

a certain type of coach can definitely get his players to play grittier. Players for the most part are eager to please. And if they sense their coach appreciates and expects a certain style of hockey, they'll try and provide that.

Then you have certain players who have some semblance of grit but don't feel comfortable playing that style unless their teammates also play that way. Those players would also raise their grit level once they become part of a teamwide mentality.

And I bet players like Bradley would certainly increase his hitting and edgy game if he had 3 or 4 guys who helped him shoulder the load. Last year he was an easy mark for other teams to focus on since he was the only guy focused in on that kind of game.

Posted by: cstanton1 | December 13, 2010 2:14 PM | Report abuse

@Hunterforcoach

dunno if I am a newbie....I am 24 and have watched every game for the last8-9yrs, and was a fan as a kid to?

Just b/c I disagree with you doesn't mean I am some bandwagon fan who knows nothing...but of course ANYONE who dares opose your all knowing self must be an idiot!

Posted by: capscoach | December 13, 2010 2:14 PM | Report abuse

@Hunterforcoach

dunno if I am a newbie....I am 24 and have watched every game for the last8-9yrs, and was a fan as a kid to?

Just b/c I disagree with you doesn't mean I am some bandwagon fan who knows nothing...but of course ANYONE who dares opose your all knowing self must be an idiot!

Posted by: capscoach | December 13, 2010 2:15 PM | Report abuse

capscoach, look if we wanted a class on cosmetology or cooking or whatever, we rely on you to provide that. This is hockey, ok? no room for girlies on this ride.


ok don't get your panties all bunched up!

Posted by: cstanton1 | December 13, 2010 2:21 PM | Report abuse

As I thought--nobody can 1.) define grit or 2.) know how to get grit.

They just know it when they "see" it. Sounds a lot like the creationists.

Actually, I can define "grit:" that mystical ingredient whose lack can explain away all Capital shortcomings.

Look, it's frustrating when such a talented team loses. But let's not attribute these losses to some mystical entity. And why on earth would we toss BB over the side because his players don't possess this magical pixiedust that cannot be taught or instilled?

Do we need a 2 line C? Sure, but every team in the league has holes in its lineup--many far worse.

Posted by: getjiggly1 | December 13, 2010 2:21 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: underpants2 | December 13, 2010 1:33 PM | Report abuse


are you crazy? The only right thing to do right now is to FIRE BB, before it will be too late and we won't make it to play offs

Posted by: beforeitstoolate | December 13, 2010 2:25 PM | Report abuse

@ Cstanton, Sometimes I agree with your posts. but the personal insults is a bit childish. Disagree with other posters, fine, but ugly, sexist comments are just not cool.

Posted by: JIMALLCAPS2 | December 13, 2010 2:27 PM | Report abuse

sorry giggly, once you start with "nobody knows how to define or acquire grit", the rest of your message gets lost in the ether.

you must work in the Caps front office. That concept appears elusive to them as well.

Posted by: cstanton1 | December 13, 2010 2:27 PM | Report abuse

im a pig!

no seriously, im a pig.

Posted by: cstanton1 | December 13, 2010 2:29 PM | Report abuse

"As I thought--nobody can 1.) define grit or 2.) know how to get grit."

---

Checking, forechecking, clearing the crease on defense, mucking up the crease on offense and getting dirty goals, and standing up for your teammates en masse when people mess with them.

"Grit" can be achieved by a head coach who emphasizes these aspects of the game, and rewards players who embody them, rather than one who criticizes one of maybe two players on the team at this point, who is also the captain, for trying to inject some energy in his teammates by mixing it up.

We can define Grit, and we know how grit is achieved. I was personally giving you the benefit of the doubt by assuming you were just being cheeky. I didn't realize that you were actually dense and didn't grasp a simple concept of hockey like "grit."

While we're at it, do you need any other basic hockey concepts defined for you? I've got a few free minutes.

Posted by: VTDuffman | December 13, 2010 2:31 PM | Report abuse

are you crazy? The only right thing to do right now is to FIRE BB, before it will be too late and we won't make it to play offs

Posted by: beforeitstoolate

I hear you. But you can't fire the guy on TV. Way too brutal. He is a good man, and has done a lot for this team.

Why isn't extend Tom Poti one of the poll questions? I vote for that.

Posted by: underpants2 | December 13, 2010 2:32 PM | Report abuse

Matt Hendricks = gritty

Tomas Flusher = not gritty

John Erskine = gritty

Tom Poti = not gritty

now jiggy, do you really need an explanation as to what separates a Hendricks from a Flash or an Erskine from a Poti?

hint: it doesn't necessarily have anything to do with dropping gloves.

Posted by: cstanton1 | December 13, 2010 2:32 PM | Report abuse

@ Hunter...because Kono asked to be traded to a team in the Western Conf, I loved him to, but when a palyer wants out and he is on the downside of his career....

Posted by: boomer44 | December 13, 2010 2:34 PM | Report abuse

good job VT, now explain to Gigli what it means when the red light comes on behind the goalpost.

Posted by: cstanton1 | December 13, 2010 2:34 PM | Report abuse

@getjiggly

Go back to Japers. That magical substance is seen in the finals every year. The Caps fans don't get to see it because we're done a month before the finals.

That magical substance was on this team once: 1998. But, we ran into a buzz saw. One of the best teams ever created:1998 Wings

Get on the Hawks web site and watch the series from last year. BOTH teams were throwing knock out punches every shift and all game. That's why these two goofs have to go. We're the wimpiest team in the league.

Just look at Poti during the Ovi fight. What a wimp !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Posted by: Hunterforcoach | December 13, 2010 2:34 PM | Report abuse

@Boomer

I think Kono's frustrations with the direction of the Caps (anointing Jagr to god status) was more the reason he wanted out than anything.

And he was excellent for the Avs. He ended up on their top line before an injury derailed him and his career. Agreed that he wasn't in his prime anymore but he still provided great value to the Avs and would have kept on doing it had he not gotten hurt.

Posted by: cstanton1 | December 13, 2010 2:37 PM | Report abuse

@ Every Poster here Today

THANK YOU !!!!!!!!!

What great reading you give today :) Awesome

Posted by: bqts | December 13, 2010 2:39 PM | Report abuse

I know there are a lot of pros and cons as to whether BB should be replaced, and there are salient and cogent arguments on both sides of the question.

Nonetheless, has anyone stopped to think and recall recent hockey history? Remember what our arch enemies in Western Pennsylvania did in February of 2009? And do you remember the result in June of 2009?

Maybe history repeats itself a little closer to home?

I'm just saying . . .

Posted by: Ve1ostrummer | December 13, 2010 2:40 PM | Report abuse

WTF, so many comments on these boards, I don't know where to begin. I wish I had the time to come on here more often, like so many of you do. It's a wonder we're mired in a recession. Anyway, here's my opinions... you know what, never mind. Anyone that agrees with me will just be riding my jock and anyone that doesn't, probably won't be swayed by my perspective. OK, I can't resist.

Fire BB now? Yes. Not just because of the current skid, but because it's clear, and has been for some time, that this team needs a coach with some balls(I've stated before that I thought he was good at the time of his hiring for helping our large group of 'O' talented young players excel, but like EVERY coach does eventually, he's lost the team).

Trade players? If they're the right players. IMO, Ovie,Backs,Green,Carlson,and both Varly/Neuvy are not an option, anyone else is fair game for the right return.

For those that want to trade Green, you are out of your minds. There are FEW FORWARDS in the league let alone D men that can carry the puck up the ice like him and if you haven't noticed his improvement in his own zone, you should pay closer attention when/if you're watching games.

Semin? He is one of the most skilled stick handler's/shooters in the league, but as is the norm with most players with his talent, he is soft and inconsistent. With FA looming, he's ideal trade bait for maximum return that would improve this team. Giving him an extension will bite this team in the A*%! I love the guys skill, but I'm telling you now.

We need a coach now that does not coddle the players (especially the stars)and instills a harder nosed style of play. This is HOCKEY, not Disney On Ice! If we get the right coach and make another trade or two that returns some more toughness with some skill, we could be unstoppable.

This doesn't cover all of the dumb comments that I've read, but I had start somewhere.

Posted by: FunkyGloveFacewash | December 13, 2010 2:40 PM | Report abuse

Poti and Schultz are cut from the same lingerie. If Schultz could jump into someone's lap during an on-ice altercation he would. He looks visibly shaken when confronted.

Posted by: cstanton1 | December 13, 2010 2:40 PM | Report abuse

As I thought--nobody can 1.) define grit or 2.) know how to get grit.

They just know it when they "see" it. Sounds a lot like the creationists.

Actually, I can define "grit:" that mystical ingredient whose lack can explain away all Capital shortcomings.

Look, it's frustrating when such a talented team loses. But let's not attribute these losses to some mystical entity. And why on earth would we toss BB over the side because his players don't possess this magical pixiedust that cannot be taught or instilled?

Do we need a 2 line C? Sure, but every team in the league has holes in its lineup--many far worse.

Posted by: getjiggly1

Actually, I thought cstanton1 defined grit very well. I pointed you to my earlier post and gave you specific examples of players whose play can best be described as gritty. Grit can be aquired, but it can't be taught or instilled. That doesn't diminish it, or somehow make it less valuable to a team because you yourself either can't define it, or a delibrately avoiding posts that attempt to define it.

Posted by: Fletch22 | December 13, 2010 2:40 PM | Report abuse

@Cstanton

Be nice to the ladies !!!!!!!

Posted by: Hunterforcoach | December 13, 2010 2:40 PM | Report abuse

@cstanton1

Hey I cook...wtf? (and yes, stats to prove it)

Now, when I feel the need to take a class on "How To Drink 2 Beers and Pass Out"...I'll rely on you to provide that. Deal? =)

Again, this may have been mentioned in previous posts (which Im too lazy to go back and read), but man, Ovie's hip check right before the fight. OUCH. What a hit. He's been throwing the body around a lot more recently. I like it.

Question of the day: What are the chances that when Semin hit Ovie with his shot last night, it was intentional...to get back at him for when Ovie mocked Semin's fighting skills on the WII?

Things that make you go hmmmmmmmmmmmm.

Posted by: SeminAllOverTheIce | December 13, 2010 2:43 PM | Report abuse

Funky i read your army story off an earlier thread. Excellent! I think there's an opening on the 3rd line on this team if you want it. LW specifically.

Posted by: cstanton1 | December 13, 2010 2:43 PM | Report abuse

@Boomer

Kono got hurt. The man was a BEAST. He played the whole rink every game. The Av's stole him.

Posted by: Hunterforcoach | December 13, 2010 2:44 PM | Report abuse

New thread

Posted by: Fletch22 | December 13, 2010 2:46 PM | Report abuse

"good job VT, now explain to Gigli what it means when the red light comes on behind the goalpost."

---

Slow down there, tiger. I think we should make sure he knows what the little round rubber thingie is before we start getting into more advanced concepts like "scoring."

Posted by: VTDuffman | December 13, 2010 2:46 PM | Report abuse

lol Saito, and touche. 2 beer maximum baby!

and i like to cook as well. And i sometimes wear shirts that I can tie off at my bare midriff.

I hope capscoach knew i was kidding. Women are always welcome here. That includes you too sgm.

Posted by: cstanton1 | December 13, 2010 2:48 PM | Report abuse

Read the attached article and notice the similarities - there's plenty.

http://sports.espn.go.com/nhl/news/story?id=3123386

Posted by: puckman | December 13, 2010 2:50 PM | Report abuse

maybe if stanton had gotten that job as a western scout he would not have so much hatred for the Caps brass, then again maybe they made the right decision?

Posted by: boomer44 | December 13, 2010 2:51 PM | Report abuse

hunter...I said i loved Kono, but he asked to be traded, it wasn't like the Caps wanted to move him

Posted by: boomer44 | December 13, 2010 2:55 PM | Report abuse

@getjiggly

Scotty Bowman an AHL lifer? That guy was rolling into the Cap center 20 years ago with the Sabres and kicking our rears with Tom Barrassssooooooo in net.

We've sat through all this mismanagement (all 35 years. Starting with the JOLY PICK OVER TROTTIER). That's why we're done with this coach. We need real leadership and a GM that can build a team with GUTS, CHARACTER, AND SKILL.

I can't listen to another BB post game. He's Mr. MaGOO at this point.

Yea, And I think guys are sandbagging him. The players know he can't win the cUp.

Posted by: Hunterforcoach | December 13, 2010 2:58 PM | Report abuse

@leftcoast

Where are you man ?? Time for you to attack me. Tell me how great BB is now.
Remind me that GMGM was nominated for GM of the year. Come on, buddy!!!!!!!!!!!!

Posted by: Hunterforcoach | December 13, 2010 3:01 PM | Report abuse

maybe if stanton had gotten that job as a western scout he would not have so much hatred for the Caps brass, then again maybe they made the right decision?

Posted by: boomer44

i walked away, not the other way around. i will say no more.

Posted by: cstanton1 | December 13, 2010 3:03 PM | Report abuse

@Boomer

The fact that you don't know Kono got injured means that you aren't much of a scout either.

Posted by: Hunterforcoach | December 13, 2010 3:05 PM | Report abuse

no need for panic. I am less than a casual fan, but I follow sports. the Caps always swoon a bit after a trade. they will right the ship sooner than later.

Posted by: SkinzNWiz | December 13, 2010 3:06 PM | Report abuse

Scotty Bowman an AHL lifer?
------------------------

yup. I don't think he had 1 game NHL experience before he went into coaching.

It's not uncommon to see this type of behavior (talking about firing a successful coach, imagining fantastic trades that aren't gonna happen) among those new to the NHL. The only thing that's novel here is the introduction of "grit" which can be interchangeably used with "lockerroom guy" or "we gotta take things one game at a time" or pixiedust.

Posted by: getjiggly1 | December 13, 2010 3:11 PM | Report abuse

Poti and Schultz are cut from the same lingerie. If Schultz could jump into someone's lap during an on-ice altercation he would. He looks visibly shaken when confronted.

LMAO! 'Jump into someone's lap', too funny, and I'm not even a Schultz hater.

Posted by: FunkyGloveFacewash | December 13, 2010 3:12 PM | Report abuse

@getjiggly

Man are clueless. Did you ever see those Buffalo teams we played ? Bowman teams play hockey ? What good coach are you talking about? Oh, The "BIG CUP HOLDER COACH". We don't play team defense like Bowman teams. We don't hit like Bowman teams. So, The comparison to BB is a bogus.

Would Bowman or his son do those ads? Hell no!

Posted by: Hunterforcoach | December 13, 2010 3:18 PM | Report abuse

Haven't won since the Fleishmann trade; not much to do about that now, but something must have happenned to their psyche. Also think letting Jose Theodore go was huge. Don't know what Boudreau had against him, but he got us to the playoffs both prior years, and was then benched and we lost early. Whether technically he was perfect or not, the team clearly played in front of him. If you look at the stats we have been out-shooting the teams we've been losing to. I like Neuvy and Varly, but they are young and inexperienced. They have the potential to be great goalies, but if this continues they could both be damaged for life...

Posted by: WLHSMom | December 13, 2010 3:20 PM | Report abuse

Enough already with the endless rants about BB "Being too busy making bad TV commercials to coach the team properly"

Um, by my count there are currently five (5) different local TV commercials airing which--in one way or another--feature Coach Boudreau.

Were they a waste of his time? Probably.
Were they stupid? Almost certainly.
Were they a degrading embarassment for BB and viewers alike? Damn straight.

That said, please also consider that:

--Two of these commercials (the American Service Center "Cupholder" ad and first of the Geico Caveman/Zamboni ads (in which BB had only a cameo apearance at the end) were both filmed last season.
--All of the remaining three ads(ASC "Bird Calls"; Hadeed Carpet; ASC "track suit dance") were filmed during the off-season, each one taking a maybe couple hours tops of the Coach's time.

So while these ads may be detrimental to the coach's image (and, I daresay, his dignity), I don't think it has much to do at all with his performance of his coaching duties.

Consider carefully: Are any of us spending every waking moment (even when we're on vacation) thinking about our primary jobs?

What did you think? That BB is rushing off the bench/off the ice to get to the studio every time one those commercials is aired? Sheesh!

Posted by: Rhino40 | December 13, 2010 3:22 PM | Report abuse

I'll continue to play along. From wiki

Grit in psychology is a positive, non-cognitive trait, based on an individual’s passion for a particular long-term goal or endstate coupled with a powerful motivation to achieve their respective objective. This perseverance of effort promotes the overcoming of obstacles or challenges that lay within a gritty individual’s path to accomplishment and serves as a driving force in achievement realization. Commonly associated concepts within the field of psychology include "perseverance," “hardiness,” "resilience,” “ambition,” and “need for achievement.

So roughly 4 Cap players have this undefinable, useless, make believe magical pixidust trait.

Posted by: Fletch22 | December 13, 2010 3:27 PM | Report abuse

The Caps are showing what happens to a team that plays one way hockey. Live by the 5 goal game, die the same way when you cannot score. They are reflection of their coach. He never made the NHL because he didn't play in his own end. Last night the back check and the defense was so loose I could have scored on a weak goalie like the Caps have. Also coach BB has GOT to stop doing TV commericals where he talks about needing space in his car for the Stanley Cup. Bad karma there.

Posted by: justoneblacktoe | December 13, 2010 3:27 PM | Report abuse

@Vermont
I'm slightly offended I wasn't included in your list of those to oversee the on-ice product. Can I at least sharpen skates?

Posted by: kcbrichmond | December 13, 2010 12:36 PM | Report abuse

Welcome, kcb!! Since I came on board, I thought I was the only one singing the song...didn't see too many calling for BB's job when the team was first in the league, except for those whose name i mentioned. Without a doubt, those I mentioned share a passion for HOCKEY THE WAY IT WAS MEANT TO BE PLAYED (umberger, anyone?) and WE'LL NEVER FORGET THE SHAME AND INDIGNATION OF BEING BULLIED BY OUR RIVALS. To ice a European/collegiate team in the NHL (while conference rivals are compiling teams that could spank the Broad Street Bullies) is unexcusable and the fanbase deserves a team capable of competing in every facet of the game.

I'll be looking-out for your posts, kcb, let your voice be heard :)

Posted by: vermontcaps | December 13, 2010 3:35 PM | Report abuse

"talking about firing a successful coach"

---

Successful in what regard? Regular Season wins?

better not get rid of BB, we might never win the President's Trophy again!

Posted by: VTDuffman | December 13, 2010 3:37 PM | Report abuse

Fire that annoying, amateur, advertising pimp....he can take his commercials and talent back to the AHL where he belongs.

How anyone can respect a goof like that who tinkers with lines like he's trying to play the piano is beyond me. He's done well but his time to go has come and hopefully he will be gone real soon.

Posted by: capper3 | December 13, 2010 3:38 PM | Report abuse

Geez. I must be arguing with some rael NHL tyros here.

Think Scotty Bowman never did any commercials? He did 'em all the time--TV and radio. Go to Canada--they probably still his CarProof (Canada equivalent of CarFax) commercials. Bowman has done commercials for Tim Hortons and Micron skates to name a couple.

Posted by: getjiggly1 | December 13, 2010 3:39 PM | Report abuse

cstanton1: you're dead on esp about poti and shultz. As for agitators, anyone who's played hockey knows agitators not only agitate opposing players but they agitate their own, they get them out of their comfort zone, they make you elevate your game, that's why I'll say again we need a player w/ some HATE on this team. Lst nght when Avery was done w/ Hendricks and stood over him, clearly mocking him and talking bad smack his fight strap was exposed, a hater on our team, w/ grit (see above) would have seen the opportunity to come in, man handle him, defend one of the only guys on this team w/ soul and attitude and really send a message. THIS TEAM NEEDS A BRAWL! a real wake up.

Posted by: collegehockeyfan | December 13, 2010 3:39 PM | Report abuse

"Think Scotty Bowman never did any commercials?"

---

Scotty Bowman won 9 cups.

Bruce Boudreau has won one playoff series.

You're comparing apples to garden gnomes here.

Posted by: VTDuffman | December 13, 2010 3:44 PM | Report abuse

We need to move Ovechkin to the halfboards on the powerplay. Having him at the point wastes his laser shot.

Posted by: Sticksboi35 | December 13, 2010 3:46 PM | Report abuse

@jiggly,

I'll post this again in the event you missed it (or ignored it).

From wiki: Grit in psychology is a positive, non-cognitive trait, based on an individual’s passion for a particular long-term goal or endstate coupled with a powerful motivation to achieve their respective objective. This perseverance of effort promotes the overcoming of obstacles or challenges that lay within a gritty individual’s path to accomplishment and serves as a driving force in achievement realization. Commonly associated concepts within the field of psychology include "perseverance," “hardiness,” "resilience,” “ambition,” and “need for achievement.

Posted by: Fletch22 | December 13, 2010 3:51 PM | Report abuse

this team is good enough that we could literally forfeit games until we are in 9th place and then climb back to make the playoffs, and probably win the division.
It's not like there is an urgency in december to win or risk not making the playoffs.
That said, things are getting embarrassing. Just for the sake of accountability, some heads will have to start rolling if this continues.
Hopefully we blow anaheim out of the freakin water on wednesday. Ovi scores twice, we rout them by 5 goals, get on a roll going into winter classic. Wouldnt surprise me whatsoever.
I just cant picture another home loss after a 3 day break. It's not going to happen.
If it does, I will rethink all of the above.

Posted by: royhperkins | December 13, 2010 3:52 PM | Report abuse

BB is a wonderful coach. Regretably he has done everything that he can do for the Washington Capitals. It is time for both the team and the coach to go their separate ways. Coach BB will be snapped up fast by another team. The Capitals will also get a spark from a new coach with new ideas. No hard feelings. That's just the way it is sometimes.

Posted by: ajay3 | December 13, 2010 3:53 PM | Report abuse

Didn't say BB is Bowman--yet. But the fact is most successful coaches get chances to make commercials.

Anybody who believes commercials diminish the coaches are grasping for excuses (just like "grit") to try to explain what they cannot explain. If anything, the fact BB is getting some good commercial gigs enhances his rep among the players. The players understand that poor or mediocre players don't get commercials--only the successful ones do.

The same holds true for coaches. You didn't see Jim Zorn or Glen Hanlon getting Mercedes Benz commercials. Shoot, even Mike Shanahan isn't getting the ads he got in Denver.

Basically, the arguments boil down to this:
1. BB should be fired because he does commercials.
2. Players all lack pixiedust.
3. We need Dmen who want to goon it up at every chance.

How silly.

Posted by: getjiggly1 | December 13, 2010 4:00 PM | Report abuse

Fletch: I saw it the first time. I did ignore it as it holds about as much gravitas as saying the players lack self-esteem. Or that they miss their mommies.

To reach, the NHL--the pinnacle for any hockey player--a player has all of the characteristics listed in your psychobabble. They've persevered, they've sacrificed, they've overcome obstacles to become one of the most elite athletes not just in hockey, but in all sports.

Posted by: getjiggly1 | December 13, 2010 4:06 PM | Report abuse

Didn't say BB is Bowman--yet. But the fact is most successful coaches get chances to make commercials.

Anybody who believes commercials diminish the coaches are grasping for excuses (just like "grit") to try to explain what they cannot explain. If anything, the fact BB is getting some good commercial gigs enhances his rep among the players. The players understand that poor or mediocre players don't get commercials--only the successful ones do.

The same holds true for coaches. You didn't see Jim Zorn or Glen Hanlon getting Mercedes Benz commercials. Shoot, even Mike Shanahan isn't getting the ads he got in Denver.

Basically, the arguments boil down to this:
1. BB should be fired because he does commercials.
2. Players all lack pixiedust.
3. We need Dmen who want to goon it up at every chance.

How silly.

Posted by: getjiggly1

How do you define success? Out of the 1st round one time in his tenure. 1-3 in game 7's. No Stanley Cups.

1. BB should be fired because the team has tuned him out.
2. Read the defintion of grit. It's there 2 times specifically for you.
3. We need D who refuse to play passive hockey.

How ignorant.

Posted by: Fletch22 | December 13, 2010 4:08 PM | Report abuse

Good teams in this league have figured out how to play the Caps and it's gonna be all downhill from here because BB doesn't know how to counter.

I don't know who the coach will be but the next coach needs to be a former NHL player IMO.

With all his regular season success I don't think BB knows how to win at this level when it counts.

Posted by: joek443 | December 13, 2010 4:09 PM | Report abuse

I think now everyone know in this country that Caps suck. ESPN showed highlights from last night like 3 times this morning.. They never do that when we win.

Posted by: beforeitstoolate | December 13, 2010 4:16 PM | Report abuse

I absolutely believe the current roster can win the Cup. On paper they have as much pure talent as any team in the league, more than 95% of the teams. It is the MISMANAGEMENT of talent that's the problem.

As for the Presidents trophy, that and $4 will get you a cup of coffee and another empty banner. With Wasingtons pure firepower I could win the Presidents trophy behind the bench.

Did the Presidents trophy give them the heart and killer instincts to finish off the Canadians when they had them by the throat? Nope!!! They loosened their grip, let go and choked themselves.

Posted by: FLDave | December 13, 2010 4:17 PM | Report abuse

I think now everyone knows in this country that Caps suck. ESPN showed highlights from last night like 3 times this morning.. They never do that when we win.

Posted by: beforeitstoolate | December 13, 2010 4:23 PM | Report abuse

Funky i read your army story off an earlier thread. Excellent! I think there's an opening on the 3rd line on this team if you want it. LW specifically. - cstanton1

Thanks, if I were to get 1/4 of the league min. to play, I'd still be making way more than I am now,while doing something I love. It's a shame most Pro players never had to pay to play in a league, they'd all have a better appreciation of their situation and therefore would (hopefully) give 110% every time they played.

Posted by: FunkyGloveFacewash | December 13, 2010 4:28 PM | Report abuse

He ended up on their top line before an injury derailed him and his career
*cstanton*

@Boomer

The fact that you don't know Kono got injured means that you aren't much of a scout either.
*Hunterforcoach*
------------------------------------------
The fact that NEITHER of you know that it was a heart condition NOT an injury that ended Kono's career means what then?

Top line my @ss! When the Avs 1st traded for him they weren't sure if he could skate with the high flying, wheeling & dealing western conference coming from a slower more gritty eastern conf. I was here in Denver when it happened and I know Kono and see him regularly. Kono was a great addition to the club and they found he could skate and play even more effectively in his role here.

Kono's a great guy and I'd love to see him get his chance in DC. He does have aspirations to be a coach. At this point, without quoting him, just knowing him the way I do, I would bet that he feels he's not ready yet (to be head coach at nhl level). He wants to be better before he actively markets himself would be my guess. Now if somebody comes knockin who knows?

Posted by: pokerface1208 | December 13, 2010 4:34 PM | Report abuse

I'd rather have them tank for a couple of weeks before the Christmas break and sort out their issues now than sort of coast into the playoffs and lose first round. They definitely have the talent to win but their focus is off. Maybe a losing streak when they are at the top of the conference is what they need to start playing smarter hockey. One thing I don't like about their mindset this season is that they are assuming they can just coast through the regular season and still get home ice advantage, then turn it on in the playoffs.

Posted by: Stu_c | December 13, 2010 4:38 PM | Report abuse

I didn't get to watch last night's game, and I am probably much happier because of it. I did go to hockeyfights to watch Ovi's fight and the only thing that bothered me was the reaction by the players. On the Rangers side the players were all tapping the side boards with their sticks. On the Caps side,.....nothing. No emotion no response...NOTHING!!!!!!!!!!!!

That tells me all I need. Not only has BB lost this team, the team has lost its heart.

Posted by: realoldcapsfan | December 13, 2010 4:45 PM | Report abuse

The solution lies in a three-step process. First, George McPhee signs Bruce Boudreau to a long-term contract. Second, when this idiotic move backfires, Ted Leonsis has the grounds for firing McPhee and bringing in a new GM. Third, the new GM fires Boudreau and brings in a new coach. It's that simple.

Posted by: redhotCAPSaicin | December 13, 2010 4:47 PM | Report abuse

Fletch: I saw it the first time. I did ignore it as it holds about as much gravitas as saying the players lack self-esteem. Or that they miss their mommies.

To reach, the NHL--the pinnacle for any hockey player--a player has all of the characteristics listed in your psychobabble. They've persevered, they've sacrificed, they've overcome obstacles to become one of the most elite athletes not just in hockey, but in all sports.

Posted by: getjiggly1

Lol, right, I get it now. You've got it figured out. Intangibles don't exist, just meaningless magical make believe things like leadership, instinct, toughness, heart, guts and character. I can't believe that these things that players and coaches talk about don't actually exist. Those tricksters.

That 'success' thing you mention, what exactly is that? How do you define it and where can go to see it?

Posted by: Fletch22 | December 13, 2010 4:48 PM | Report abuse

Forgot work ethic, attitude and teamwork.

This is great news. I look forward to telling my boss that I refuse to be reviewed/graded on any of these intagible skills, because they don't really exist. Afterall, you can't be graded on magical pixiedust. I mean, you just can't.

Posted by: Fletch22 | December 13, 2010 5:26 PM | Report abuse

I agree with the recurrent themes that: other teams have figured us out; other teams have improved and we haven't; we are predictable. probably because we do not adapt and change fast enough. I have to sadly agree that, right now, BB has lost the team. The abrupt reversal is still stunning, as was the sudden collapse of the Caps in game 7 last year.

I am not nearly as knowledgeable as others on this blog. Has anyone heard of a team unravelling so quickly? BB did wonders by building CAPs' confidence; freeing them to play a looser, more creative game; bringing in new talent etc. Is there something in the way he built the team that makes it prone to going into free fall at a blink of the eye? I could see why Hanlon failed. It was no surprose. But how could someone as successful as BB (both here and in Hershey) suddenly "lose the team?" Could we be wrong?

I hope someone will answer and maybe give us some parallels in hockey history.

Also, the ENTIRE team seems to have gone down the hill at once. In addition to forwards and D, goaltending is not that great either. With the exception of a couple of games, the other goalies outplayed ours. Just about every goal tender we faced (with a few exceptions) has been spectacular. What is it about our talented forwards that makes it possible for them to be stopped by great or even competent goalies and D-men?

Any wise predictions for the near future?


Posted by: caraveli | December 13, 2010 5:30 PM | Report abuse

Any wise predictions for the near future?

Posted by: caraveli

Well, the good news is that we don't need anymore magical pixiedust for our probable playoff run. So we're set there. At least that's what jiggy said.

Other than that, increased fan angst, possible coaching change, maybe a trade to shake up the team. That's how I see it.

Posted by: Fletch22 | December 13, 2010 5:54 PM | Report abuse

NEWS FLASH ...they shoot commercials in the summer time ..BB isnt skipping practice or meeting to go shot commercials...are all caps fans really this stupid?

Posted by: heathdog1119 | December 14, 2010 11:26 AM | Report abuse

Two words: GET NABOKOV!

He was just let go by his KHL team and I'm certain that he would LOVE to play on a Cup contender with his fellow Russians for a reasonable sum.

Posted by: playahatah | December 14, 2010 12:59 PM | Report abuse

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