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Postgame Poll: How Bad Was Theodore?

The Capitals lose Game 1 to the visiting Rangers, 4-3. Many will say Washington goaltender Jose Theodore was subpar tonight. What do you think?

By washingtonpost.com Sports Editor  |  April 15, 2009; 9:41 PM ET
 
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Next: Theodore: 'I'm Not Happy With My Game'

Comments

Theodore!! You are grounded!! Get to your room right now!!

and First.

Posted by: sonotgrood | April 15, 2009 9:43 PM | Report abuse

Schultz flopping around on the ice like a fish after that move didnt help things much

Posted by: skins1110 | April 15, 2009 9:44 PM | Report abuse

He absolutely sucked tonight!!
Coach needs to make a permanent change, all the espn talking heads pointed to goalie as our weak spot and they were right.

Posted by: jphilipj | April 15, 2009 9:44 PM | Report abuse

I wish the Verizon staff would identify the people that throw stuff on the ice at the end of games...you people are CLASSLESS!!! You are the reason that people think DC fans are worse than Philly fans. Ban these a-holes from Verizon for life.

Posted by: austonja | April 15, 2009 9:45 PM | Report abuse

Schultz is a tool. How humiliating that was to get spun into the ice. I doubt he will ever fully recover in a Caps uniform.

Posted by: crooks_c | April 15, 2009 9:46 PM | Report abuse

Hope Jose doesnt blow this whole series.

Posted by: hank7216 | April 15, 2009 9:46 PM | Report abuse

All hockey "experts" picked the Caps to win this thing in five, six or seven games. I was a little suspect simply because I didn't (and don't) trust Theo or this matador defense led by the atrocity that is Schultz. But I guess we'll see going into Game 2 if anything changes. Caps should be able to win that because the Rangers did their job and took one on the road.

Posted by: CDon | April 15, 2009 9:48 PM | Report abuse

When will the Capitals organization realize that Jeff Schultz is not a professional hockey player? Wow. Just wow.

Posted by: FancyDan | April 15, 2009 9:48 PM | Report abuse

And I am sick of hearing this Jose has to be the guy b.s. If he sux in game 2 he must be removed.

Posted by: hank7216 | April 15, 2009 9:48 PM | Report abuse

Theo's public relations group is writing a public apology as we speak.

Posted by: sonotgrood | April 15, 2009 9:48 PM | Report abuse

I find it funny how Schultz is the one who gets “undressed” for the game winning goal. It’s like we’ve seen this so many times during the regular season, it’s only fitting that it’s Schultz that it happens to. Get him outta here, he isn’t even good enough to be in the AHL. He should play hockey with those little mites. I don't see anything great in him. It really boggles the mind, why they never sit him down, or why they freakin' love him so much.

The bottom line is that the defense and Theo is just not good enough.

Theo: 17/21
Lundy: 32/35

The absolute one thing I did not want to say: Lundqvist made the difference.

Posted by: rachel216 | April 15, 2009 9:49 PM | Report abuse

VARMALOV in game 2!!!! After we tied it at two, Theo let in an easy one within a minute that deflated the team for at least 10 minutes until Kozlov scored at the end of the 2nd.

In the playoffs, you NEED the big save and Theo just doesn't have it in him.

Posted by: Satts | April 15, 2009 9:50 PM | Report abuse

Rangers fans in 3, 2, 1.....

Posted by: rachel216 | April 15, 2009 9:51 PM | Report abuse

Put Schultz in front of Lundquist and I think you'll see things differently. So will Lundquist.

Posted by: FancyDan | April 15, 2009 9:51 PM | Report abuse

I've been giving Theo the benefit of the doubt going into this series, but he allowed two suspect goals and Lundy did not.

Posted by: ModestProposal | April 15, 2009 9:51 PM | Report abuse

I say 3 of them. That one screened shot he really didn't have a chance on but the rest were him just flopping about in chill mode. I am not usually one to ride the Varly bandwagon but if Theo can't step it up in game 2 BB should just say screw it and play him.

Schultz needs to figure out how to skate as well.

Not worried though. There is a reason games are best of 7.

Posted by: trunkenmath | April 15, 2009 9:51 PM | Report abuse

Right or wrong, that's a pretty harsh title! I mean, we already have the poll...
:)

Posted by: austinsteve | April 15, 2009 9:52 PM | Report abuse

seeing the results of the poll and reading some of these comments explains why people outside of DC think we don't know hockey. Theo did not suck, he actually made a bunch of quality saves.

I agree the fist goal was soft but I think he was expecting a call on one of two interference penalties that was not called.

The other 3 were top corner and I doubt Henrik would have made any of those saves. Torts obviously instructed the team to shoot high since Theo is on the short side and goes down on the butterfly.

The Caps dominated that game as far as I'm concerned so I'm not that worried. I will agree that Pothier should definitely replace #55.

Let's try to remain calm, it's a best of 7 series

Posted by: Moose33 | April 15, 2009 9:52 PM | Report abuse

Yep, put Pothier back in the game and get rid of Schultz. He won't contact anyone, he doesn't move the puck all that well, he never puts a shot on net when he gets an opportunity and he's too often undressed by opposing forwards. Again, what is that BB sees in him that's so appealing? That's probably the one thing that's confused me about BB the most.

Also, while I saw more Caps near the crease, none of them were IN FRONT of Henrik. They all seemed to stand to the side, which still allowed him to see pucks shot from the point or beyond. Not enough grinders on this team. Maybe Clark needs to suit up.

I wasn't impressed with the checking line, and I'm not sure what purpose Gordon serves. Aren't he and Bradley kind of redundant anyway?

Posted by: CDon | April 15, 2009 9:53 PM | Report abuse

I cannot believe my ears! Watching this post-game interview with Dubinksy and he just said "Schultz is a great defenseman" and "Theodore is a great goalie." Wow.

Posted by: donknutts | April 15, 2009 9:53 PM | Report abuse

Schultz needs to figure out how to skate? Why on earth would the Caps play a defensemen who can't skate?

Your guess is as good as mine.

Posted by: FancyDan | April 15, 2009 9:53 PM | Report abuse

i already have tomorrows headline:THEODORE SUCKS!caps will never go anywhere with him as our #1 guy.besides him(and shultz)the caps played there butts off.they deserved the win but again theo screwed it up.FIRE HIM!

Posted by: gratefuldid | April 15, 2009 9:53 PM | Report abuse

Well, if he stopped the first goal, the soft goal, then at least we'd still be tied. Satts, I agree with you. Theo can't make that huge, timely save for us. Imagine if he stopped the Dubinsky shot, that would've given us momentum.

Posted by: rachel216 | April 15, 2009 9:53 PM | Report abuse

I think the passion we saw in the last 20 seconds is telling. We needed that urgency 2 minutes earlier.

Posted by: austinsteve | April 15, 2009 9:53 PM | Report abuse

@Moose

You never expect a call. You keep playing until the whistle. So I will not absolve Theo from that goal. And sure, Theo made some saves here or there, but notice how he had to fight all of them. Notice the rebounds he allowed. The score could've much worse if Rangers were around to pound home some of those juicy caroms off Theo.

Posted by: CDon | April 15, 2009 9:55 PM | Report abuse

I notice there aren't many Schultz supporters on here. Good thing, you all should just shut your holes. He only single handedly cost us game 1. Yeah it would have been nice if Theo made the save but he shouldn't have had to if an NHL caliber Dman was in on that play. Absolutely brutal. BB better sit Shultz and put Pothier in there is all I gotta say. That's a beer league mistake. Absolutely brutal! Not to mention embarassing.

Posted by: pokerface1208 | April 15, 2009 9:56 PM | Report abuse

Wow, there it is. That awful feeling down deep in my stomach that always seems to arrive during Caps playoff time. From the 1980's to today it keeps coming back... What a familiar scenario: now the next game becomes "must win" already.

Posted by: kcbrichmond | April 15, 2009 9:57 PM | Report abuse

@Fancydan: I was serious. You look at the skating ability of most NHL players, then you watch Schultz move around and start to wonder. Its sort of like playing "Where's Waldo" but waldo is 20 feet tall and is wearing a pink tutu

Posted by: trunkenmath | April 15, 2009 9:58 PM | Report abuse

I'm not saying you should pull Theo but that was far from an average performance from a keeper. He's only 1 game away from turning this series over to a rookie. Now our backs are against the wall. We lose game 2 and we're reaching for straws. I bet BB sits Theo if we lose game 2. We need game 2 like we need to breathe air!

Posted by: pokerface1208 | April 15, 2009 9:59 PM | Report abuse

CAN ANYONE PASS THAT FLU BUG TO THEO AND SCHULTZ PLEASE?

Posted by: gratefuldid | April 15, 2009 9:59 PM | Report abuse

I think Mike Wise nailed it this morning. It seemed like the game was a complete reflection of his column this morning....

Posted by: jeaton10 | April 15, 2009 9:59 PM | Report abuse

There are Schultz supporters somewhere? I hope GMGM realizes what a joke this defense is.

Posted by: FancyDan | April 15, 2009 10:00 PM | Report abuse

Moose33, let's be real. A goaltender lets in those softies in Montreal, or Calgary, or Detroit, or any "hockey" town, he's gonna get some heat.

Posted by: donknutts | April 15, 2009 10:00 PM | Report abuse

I'm not giving up on this team quite yet. But maybe they should change the motto to Unleash the Choking. The Caps and the playoffs just don't mix very well. But we'll see about Saturday, which is an afternoon game (not the best time of day for the Caps).

Posted by: CDon | April 15, 2009 10:01 PM | Report abuse

Moose33: I usually agree with you but I honestly did not see many quality saves from Jose, maybe it's b/c I saw so many quality saves from Lundy. Even when Theo made a stop, he looked shaky. I think Lundy had 32 quality saves. The stats just don't lie. Theo 4 goals allowed on 21 shots. Lundy 3 goals allowed on 35 shots.
I have a feeling Lundy would've stopped that Dubinsky goal.

Posted by: rachel216 | April 15, 2009 10:01 PM | Report abuse

@CDon

Thanks for breaking down the pychology of hockey. Just because you're not suppose to expect a call doesn't mean you don't inadvertently let your guard down for a second. It doesn't matter, I already said that was a soft goal.

I totally disagree with the rebounds. I thought he did a pretty good job with the rebounds and redirecting the puck to the corners.

Yes, he has to play better, come out of the crease a bit more so the shooter don't have the over the shoulder to sneak the puck through. But completely blaming Theo for that loss is absolutely unreasonable. How about giving the Ranger shooter some credit for picking the corners.

Posted by: Moose33 | April 15, 2009 10:03 PM | Report abuse

Of the course the worst possible fall out from this game would be Theo completely crashing mentally (not out of the question) and Henrik gaining even more confidence. Neither of those scenarios play out well for the Caps. I think Washington needs to get out to a two-goal lead in Game 2. Close contests favor the Rangers because of their stout defense, so Washington needs to get out to two or more goal leads.

Posted by: CDon | April 15, 2009 10:03 PM | Report abuse

The problem with this game include, but are not limited to, Theo. The biggest problem? This game validated ALL of our fears:

- The D was terrible, Schultz especially. The GWG fall thing he did was inexcusable.

- Theo wasn't doing us any favors.

- We couldn't really generate any 5 on 5 scoring.

- Lundy was an absolute monster.

We needed at least one of the 4 above things to not happen, and they all did. I'm not going to claim the sky is falling because it's only game 1, but it is a huge bummer that we just lost home ice advantage.

Posted by: VTDuffman | April 15, 2009 10:03 PM | Report abuse

From last thread:
SCHULTZ IS HORRIBLE!!!!!!!!!!!!!! It was a very nice move, but one that he shouldn't be able to pull off in the NHL(atleast not that cleanly). Scratch Schultz next game and play pothier.

Again WHAT DOES BB SEE IN SCHULTZ????????

I know a lot of people are bashing theo, but he was just average. I know to win the series you need a goalie that will stand on his head, but you can't exactly blame theo for all of those goals. On the last one, schultz gets dangled, and goes on to go on a 2 on 1. Then, I think the 2nd goal that gomez drop pass was a nice play and the caps defensmen(forgot who it was) was screening theo.

Posted by: Thomas32 | April 15, 2009 10:03 PM | Report abuse

I can't frickin believe this. I couldn't think of a scenario that the Rangers win this game. I thought they'd win 1 game this series and that would be game 3 (first game in NY) but now this changes everything. Oh well how many times did we win the 1st 2 games in Pitt then lose the next 4 in a row? Maybe this is our revenge tour. I can't frickin get over this. This was as horrible as a game as I could have imagined. I'm just stunned. I can't believe it. Whoever said we needed to keep them to 3 goals or less was obviously correct. I just can't get over the fact we lost game one. I hope the players aren't as shocked as I am.

Posted by: pokerface1208 | April 15, 2009 10:03 PM | Report abuse

The only goal I don't blame Theo for, is the Naslund goal, because that was through a good screen. All other 3 goals, the goalie had clear sight of it. The Dubinsky goal and Antropov goal should have been stopped. Antropov was from a bad angle, and Dubinsky put it in short side.

I can tell you right now, confirming it after hearing M Green's interview, the guys don't feel they played a bad defensive game. In the back of their minds, they gotta be thinking 'damn theo, can't you make one good stop?'.

Posted by: floms | April 15, 2009 10:04 PM | Report abuse

rachel, come on now. How many of those 32 saves was the puck placed in Henrik's gut? How many shots were missed wide? How many shots were blocked?

He definitely made some quality saves, the saves he was supposed to make, the ones within reach? He's a big guy and we put the puck right in his pads most of the time.

Posted by: Moose33 | April 15, 2009 10:05 PM | Report abuse

What else did Schultz do "wrong" besides fall down after getting beat?

I can give him a pass for one mistake in one game. The fall was bad to see but he was already beat even without the fall.

Theo still then has a straight-up 1-on-1 (he needs to ignore the pass, that guy was "covered"). More often than not the goalie should make that save.

Posted by: austinsteve | April 15, 2009 10:05 PM | Report abuse

@Moose

Not breaking anything down, but I hate that reasoning. A player is expecting a call. How much is a goalie really into a game if he's stopping every time he THINKS the ref is going to make the call. It's not good. Just stay focused. It's inexcusable in my mind.

And I would disagree with you about the rebounds. He didn't really kick them to the corners. He allowed them to deflect easily in front of him on a couple of occasions and off to the side (but not in the corner) on some more. I just didn't see the saves.

Is the loss completely on Theo? No, I wouldn't say that. But he looked shaky for the whole game. And you're right, the Rangers shooters do deserve credit for picking the corners. Any smart player will always shoot high and to a corner against Theo. It's always available. It was the right decision on their parts.

Posted by: CDon | April 15, 2009 10:06 PM | Report abuse

I cannot believe my ears! Watching this post-game interview with Dubinksy and he just said "Schultz is a great defenseman" and "Theodore is a great goalie." Wow.

Posted by: donknutts

He was obviously being sarcastic, he knows they both really suck. He's laughing inside.

Yeah it would have been nice if Theo made the save but he shouldn't have had to if an NHL caliber Dman was in on that play.
-pokerface1208

Yeah, he shouldn't have to, but that's his chance to step up and make a huge save. It's not like it wasn't stoppable. I'm sick of making excuses for him.

Posted by: rachel216 | April 15, 2009 10:07 PM | Report abuse

Just because you have a clear sight of the puck doesn't exactly mean you should have stopped it.

With that said, Theo played rather mediocre and Jeff Schultz is a pylon.

Posted by: richmondphil | April 15, 2009 10:07 PM | Report abuse

Nylander didn't make any "mistakes" but what else did he do? I'd like to see someone who can make more of a difference step on the ice in his place.

Pothier is not solid yet, he still was responsible for a number of goals.

Posted by: austinsteve | April 15, 2009 10:07 PM | Report abuse

Hey Tarik:

How about a "HOW BAD HAS SCHULTZ BEEN THE WHOLE SEASON" thread?

Posted by: FancyDan | April 15, 2009 10:07 PM | Report abuse

Theo, Schultz and Nylander were plain bad. Nylander was even more useless than usual.

How come Ovi is the #1 star getting over Gomes with 1+2?...

Posted by: fnralch | April 15, 2009 10:07 PM | Report abuse

Nylander didn't make any "mistakes" but what else did he do? I'd like to see someone who can make more of a difference step on the ice in his place.

Pothier is not solid yet, he still was responsible for a number of goals.

Posted by: austinsteve | April 15, 2009 10:08 PM | Report abuse

First, I will just get rid of some of my nerves:

1. Nervous about some of those non-calls. 4 (at least, that I counted), 3 of which lead to goals (2 goals).

2. Some of the players towards the end seemed to start responding a bit to Avery (I think for the most part they handled him well, but I guess that will always make me a bit nervous).

3. I know Lundy has the ability to steal a few games, and I do not feel that this Rangers win was one that he particularly stole (as good as he was).

Now that thats out of the way, I really think that the Caps are capable of bouncing back. Its only one game, in a potentially seven (hopefully five at least) game series. This loss was unfortunate, but I really liked what I saw out there (for the most part) from the Caps, and as long as they keep playing that way, they are still a huge threat!

Go Caps!

Posted by: The_Stanley_Caps | April 15, 2009 10:09 PM | Report abuse

Nylander didn't make any "mistakes" but what else did he do? I'd like to see someone who can make more of a difference step on the ice in his place.

Pothier is not solid yet, he still was responsible for a number of goals.

Posted by: austinsteve | April 15, 2009 10:09 PM | Report abuse

Like I said, it's all Mike Wise's fault! His article is the reason why we lost.

Posted by: rachel216 | April 15, 2009 10:09 PM | Report abuse

sorry for the double-post, my wireless connection burped

Posted by: austinsteve | April 15, 2009 10:10 PM | Report abuse

Maybe Theo should wear big pads like Lundy.

Posted by: rachel216 | April 15, 2009 10:11 PM | Report abuse

So everyone's p*s*ing on Schultz!? The entire defense was weak, esp. Theodore. This team has been playing on reputation since January and it's going to be fatal. Rangers in six.

Posted by: Ramone8 | April 15, 2009 10:11 PM | Report abuse

Schultz was two of those goals. Terrible, and I usually like the guy. Ok, let's think long term. Theo won't win us the cup this year. Varly isn't ready to win us the cup, but he could be next year. Theo, grab some pine. If we win this series, great. But next year, with that experience, we will.

Posted by: oldtimehockey | April 15, 2009 10:11 PM | Report abuse

Nylander is a $4+ million "no presence" player that we are forced to play. I wish I could find a job like that with the smae terms...

Posted by: FusilliJerry1 | April 15, 2009 10:11 PM | Report abuse

Torts just gave the Verizon crowd props in his post-game presser

Posted by: donknutts | April 15, 2009 10:12 PM | Report abuse

@CDon,

I'm not trying to give Theo a free pass on the first goal, but having played goal, something like that can certainly be distracting. Should he have lost his concentration? Absolutely not, he is an NHL goalie. I'm just very surprised how everyone here ruthlessly is jumping on Theo on here. It's one game and people want McPhee fired, I feel like I'm in a loony bin.

Posted by: Moose33 | April 15, 2009 10:13 PM | Report abuse

Bring Alzner up, he deserves to be a Cap way more than schultz...

Posted by: wowkanut | April 15, 2009 10:14 PM | Report abuse

So all the higher seeds won except us. Great.

Posted by: rachel216 | April 15, 2009 10:15 PM | Report abuse

@Moose

I don't want McPhee fired. He put this team together. He's drafted deftly. It's not on him. He just needs to go out there and find a defenseman or two, if he has the budget for it.

I'll admit. Jumping on Theo is easy. But quite honestly, he looked kind of shaky out there. Certainly, Henrik looked better and more in control than Theo so that comparison only adds to the frustration. But giving up seven goals in the finale (a meaningless game, I know) to a low-scoring team and then four goals in this one to another low-scoring doesn't bode well for him and the defense as a whole. I'm more concerned, at this point, about Theo losing his edge as a result of this game.

Posted by: CDon | April 15, 2009 10:16 PM | Report abuse

It seems clear that the Rangers have the "book" on Theodore--they were going top shelf on him all night.

Posted by: jkarasek | April 15, 2009 10:16 PM | Report abuse

Theo played bad, but this game wasn't lost because of him. Anyone who thinks that is lost.

We lost this game because of a few isolated defensive breakdowns. It sucks to completely dominate a game and lose on a goal like Dubinsky's...

Posted by: richmondphil | April 15, 2009 10:16 PM | Report abuse

Bottom line: That was not playoff goal tending. You can ask what Schultz did wrong aside form the flub, but the flub was enough. With the game on the line, he falls on his butt. Not acceptable. Not in game 1 of the playoffs, and not on a weak deke.

Nylander brought nothing, once again. 82 games of nothing. For 5 million. Bury him deep and never, ever speak of him again.

Is it over? No. Its a 7 game series.

Posted by: oo7 | April 15, 2009 10:17 PM | Report abuse

I'M TIRED OF MAKING EXCUSES FOR THEO!!

THEO IS LISTED AT 5'11''. THAT'S CRAP. He's more like 5'9"-5'10".

What do we have to loose by putting a bigger, faster goaly in game 2, with a 4-0-1 NHL record???

I don't think we're worse off putting in Theo. We can't afford to have another performance like that game 2, and be down 0-2 before switching it up.

Posted by: floms | April 15, 2009 10:19 PM | Report abuse

correction I don't think we have anything to loose putting in Varly for game 2

Posted by: floms | April 15, 2009 10:21 PM | Report abuse

The Caps are always the team that always makes those isolated breakdowns, though. They can play 59 minutes of fairly good defensive hockey. But that one minute combined of breakdowns is what costs them. It might be a 15-second breakdown in the first, then a 30-second one in the second and another 15 seconds in the third. And all of those will lead to goals. It's about focus and mental toughness, which some of these young players still don't have.

Posted by: CDon | April 15, 2009 10:21 PM | Report abuse

I had to answer "none" to that poll question, but still I blame Theo about 90% for that loss. Paradoxical? I don't think so. I feel like if you look at any one Rangers goal, it's hard to blame Theo -- two were nice shots to the corner and two were uneven breaks. However, I don't remember a great scoring chance by the Rangers that DIDN'T beat Theo. An NHL goalie needs to stop some good chances. I agree with Green that the Caps' D (although Schultz certainly botched the one at the end) did a good job of limiting chances overall; you need your goaltender to come up with one or two saves per game that he wouldn't necessarily be -expected- to make. An average NHL goalie will do that for you. Theo's performance was subpar for an NHL goalie, and woefully inadequate for a team that hopes to go deep in the playoffs.

Posted by: christiansonm | April 15, 2009 10:21 PM | Report abuse

It wasn't playoff defense either.

Posted by: richmondphil | April 15, 2009 10:21 PM | Report abuse

anyone that thought this lose was theo's fault is a freakin IDIOT

Posted by: _stevo | April 15, 2009 10:21 PM | Report abuse

I don't understand this Anti-Theo poll and talk. Did you guys watch the goals or just look at the box score? The 2nd and 3rd goals were absolutely perfectly placed lasers from the slot that would have been ten bell saves. The first goal was a bit soft but the guy was in alone. The fourth goal, sure a big save would have been nice, but Schultz...ugh.
Theo by no means played well tonight. He did not make a single big game changing save when we needed it. However, he hardly cost us the game.

Posted by: ph0082 | April 15, 2009 10:23 PM | Report abuse

Good evening!!!! Enjoying the playoffs so far Cap fans??????

Posted by: StanleyCup1907 | April 15, 2009 10:24 PM | Report abuse

anyone that thought this lose was theo's fault is a freakin IDIOT

Posted by: _stevo | April 15, 2009 10:21 PM |

I will quote to drive in this point.

Posted by: richmondphil | April 15, 2009 10:24 PM | Report abuse

caps d corp is obviously lacking in its depth and showed tonight...

they were mostly responsible for tonight...but a goalie needs to step up from time to time and get his boys backs and theo let in a couple of softies too...

our weaknesses were exposed...

theo responded well when he was benched earlier in the season...might not hurt to shake him up a bit now and give varly the nod...and see if it lights a fire under jose...or wait another game...

with these kinds of mistakes in our end and needing a little more spark in the other end...perhaps its time to thik about giving some kids a chance to step up...varly, alzner and acoin...

one things for sure...if this keeps up...thats a given...

Posted by: deadskin | April 15, 2009 10:24 PM | Report abuse

@ floms

i would love to know how we have nothing to loose putting varly in for game two?

is the series done already?

Posted by: _stevo | April 15, 2009 10:24 PM | Report abuse

As longtime Caps fans, we've been through this before. It's not a "loony bin", but Caps fans once again fearing the worst. I think we were all hoping for the Caps to come out and win Game 1 decisively, and then win the series 4 games to 1 or 2, and move on. Now our worst fears have been realized, Caps goaltending and defense are suspect. This is gonna be a series and the Rangers are here to play. When it comes to Caps playoffs: it's deja vu all over again...

Posted by: kcbrichmond | April 15, 2009 10:26 PM | Report abuse

Watching the game from Pittsburgh (I have my methods)...

A soft call for interference would not have been called...unless it was on the Caps. Either way, Theo should've had that one.

Feds shot the team in the foot by putting the puck over the glass. Had that not happened, we'd be watching overtime right now.

The Antropov goal was a thing of beauty.

The Schultz play was just egregious.

Otherwise, the Caps were good...just not good enough to win.

Here's how the Caps win Game 2:

1. Put Pothier in to replace Schultz. Let him sit up in the press box to see what happens when defensemen are effective and when they're not.

2. Get Green to pinch more on the weak side. I only saw him do it (at most) twice this game.

3. Get Flash in front of the net on the PP. When the Caps were here in Pittsburgh in January, Flash scored the game-winner on a diving shot off a rebound. Tonight, he scored off a tip-in. Ah wait, that reminds me...

4. Make Lundqvist give up some rebounds, and pounce. While the Caps gave him a bunch of shots, he was able to swallow them up pretty easily. Make him make those ten-bell stops early and often; he'll eventually crack.

@the Caps goaltending: I'm still on the fence re: Varlamov. I like the way he plays in net, but to expect him to just jump in and backstop a playoff series win is asking for too much.

Like it or not, Theo's the guy. The guy we were all hoping to sign is now a $5.5 million backup...who HAS NEVER WON A PLAYOFF SERIES (and if Chicago wins, it will be with Khabibuhlin in net).

So, since I've never heard during last offseason from the Theo naysayers, I must ask again: which goaltender do you get? how much do you pay him? what makes him so special?

Onto Game 2...

Posted by: PureAgression | April 15, 2009 10:27 PM | Report abuse

Also, it was lame that they didn't announce the scoring change on the first caps goal in the rink. I said Flash tipped it from the moment it happened. Everybody chanted M-V-P in the rink; I turned to my wife and, with a very smug, superior tone that it was actually Flash who scored. Then they announced as OV and I informed her (somewhat defensively) that they were going to change it. Well apparently they did, but you would never know it if you were at the game. The only hint was that when they announced OV in the three stars, they said "with two assists..."
I think it would have been nice to see Flash get some credit in the rink.

Posted by: christiansonm | April 15, 2009 10:27 PM | Report abuse

Christiansonm-well said, I agree.

Posted by: ph0082 | April 15, 2009 10:29 PM | Report abuse

I told you so "NO CUP CAPS" now do you belive me when i said get rid of Threw Theo and SIT OUT SEMIN!

Posted by: StanleyCup1907 | April 15, 2009 10:30 PM | Report abuse

They were good shots for the most part, no doubt. But anyone who has watched the Caps through the years knows that hot goalies make clutch saves to the high glove and stick side in the playoffs. We know it better than anyone, and we got ABSOLOUTELY NOTHING LIKE THAT FROM THEO tonight.

Just one save of that kind could have made a huge difference in this game. King Henrik had them, especially in the 1st.

Posted by: Satts | April 15, 2009 10:30 PM | Report abuse

Everybody played well except for 2 people:

Jeff Schultz and Jose Three-or-more.

They both sucked. Schultz is an easy fix. Just take him out and put in Pothier.

Unfortunately, we don't have another goalie that CAN play in the playoffs. If Johnny was better, it would be a different story.

Posted by: ILikeLaich | April 15, 2009 10:31 PM | Report abuse

@ floms

i would love to know how we have nothing to loose putting varly in for game two?

is the series done already?

Posted by: _stevo | April 15, 2009 10:24 PM

correction I don't think we have anything to loose putting in Varly for game 2

Posted by: floms | April 15, 2009 10:21 PM


Loose is the opposite of tight, lose is the opposite of win.

Posted by: skins1110 | April 15, 2009 10:31 PM | Report abuse

I think the first goal was Theo's fault (even though the officials missed a penalty call or two). I'm not happy. I'd say if they lose on Saturday, they're done. Why can't the Caps ever put it together? They had good goal tending for years (Kolzig) and not much else. And when they finally got good offense, Kolzig faded. And now Theodore sucks. Okay, Huet who spurned us, was not any better (as he is a backup for Chicago now).

Posted by: CapsFan75 | April 15, 2009 10:31 PM | Report abuse

THEODORE & SCHULTZ ON THE BENCH FOR GAME TWO!!!!!!!!

Come on... Theodore is LAZY... he isn't willing to sacrafice his body to make a save... Last game Varlamov played he was all over the crease stopping pucks...

Schultz is just a slow skating bum who got used!

Posted by: tony325 | April 15, 2009 10:32 PM | Report abuse

The defense has been the big question mark and it showed tonight. No moves at the trade deadline,so we have to live with what we have. Schultz is a couple years from being a decent player. Someone please tell him it's the playoffs and he needs to be physical. A check once in awhile would go a long way for him. The "D" has to be a lot better to win with Theodore. Theodore has to go again in game two.

Posted by: jmcale57 | April 15, 2009 10:32 PM | Report abuse

Ridiculous to put all the blame in Theo. Yes he could have been better but the Rangers were well prepared, kudos to their coach.

The Caps offense was horrible, shots from downtown to the chest of the goalie are not going to score. BB has to change the power play, right now it is obvious to the goalie where the shot is coming from - OV and Green - the play to set up these two guys are as predictable as daylight following night, the opposition can defense it with their eyes closed, the passing lanes are like billboard advertisements for free pucks.

Posted by: opita1 | April 15, 2009 10:32 PM | Report abuse

When it comes to Caps playoffs: it's deja vu all over again...

Posted by: kcbrichmond | April 15, 2009 10:26 PM | Report abuse

It's this type of attitude I'm talking about. You sound like a Mets fan, feeling sorry for yourself and reflecting past playoff performance to the present. Did the last Caps team that made the playoffs resemble anything close to this team?

If we continue to play like we did today and Theo employs a bit more stand-up style I still feel confident about the series.

Posted by: Moose33 | April 15, 2009 10:33 PM | Report abuse

I gotta agree with The_Stanley_Caps, I saw some non calls that led to goals. The Rangers first goal, I thought antropov (i think) should have got a interference when he knocked flash down behind the play. I saw 3 non calls i thought that led to rangers scoring chances. I know it's game one, but the reffing needs to get better and be more even.

Posted by: Thomas32 | April 15, 2009 10:33 PM | Report abuse

Theodore has sucked all season. Along with the Capitals defense. They won all season by outscoring their opponent. The guy is a F'n joke. Playoff hockey is all about good goaltending and defense. They better upgrade the goalie position next year b/c this season is OVER.

And yes, I called it.

Posted by: oneft2dice | April 15, 2009 10:34 PM | Report abuse

I put this loss squarely on the coaching staff, who have been the least effective part of this team for the last 20+ games of the season. A good coach holds his players accountable and recognizes and corrects lazy and sloppy play before it becomes a problem. Boudreau and his assistants have done neither of those things, and it showed tonight as the Caps played the exact same game that they've been playing for weeks now.

Posted by: spacecadetkid | April 15, 2009 10:34 PM | Report abuse

We could save a lot on cap space if we just used one of those velcroed-on, nylon goal covers with a guy painted on the front which my kids shoot on in our driveway. It would have about the same save percentage as either Theo has or Olie ever had.

Posted by: DDheartsCaps | April 15, 2009 10:34 PM | Report abuse

It is so frustrating when the Caps are always so close to killing a penalty and then get scored upon in the last few seconds of a PK.

Posted by: CapsFan75 | April 15, 2009 10:35 PM | Report abuse

Dont worry guys its only game one..... yes theo did not play aswell as he could have but dont balme him for everything..... he has won 4 frist round so he can do this now too.... he was the reason that the habs won the frist ound back in 02-03 and they were nah even as good as teh caps so if he can coem back from behind falling 3 games to one with the habs... wat is one game he will pull it offf guys.... he needs our suporrt we cant jus bring him down.... there are so many ppl that are talkin s**** about him so why not jus let him play and talk after cues its nah over yet!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!11

Posted by: rahul_rayray60 | April 15, 2009 10:36 PM | Report abuse

well they were lucky the refs were homers and having all those pp

Posted by: StanleyCup1907 | April 15, 2009 10:37 PM | Report abuse

Before someone calls me out, I obviously meant the last caps team before this group. You can't seriously be that disappointed in last year loss to the Flyers with a bunch of kids with no playoff experience.

Posted by: Moose33 | April 15, 2009 10:37 PM | Report abuse

There's always an upset in playoff hockey. Why is it always our team? Were we born under a black cloud? Or what's the deal?

I would really hate to see Ovi finally get his Stanley Cup with another team after finally giving the Caps permission to trade him during a rebuilding period. Say, Ovi gets it with the LA Kings or, even worse, Philthy or NY.

Posted by: CapsFan75 | April 15, 2009 10:39 PM | Report abuse

Apparently BB is considering Varlamov for game 2! Let's only hope.

Posted by: mjmq | April 15, 2009 10:39 PM | Report abuse

One other thing:

The Caps are 13-19 in the playoffs after winning Game 1; 4-6 in series after losing it. So really, it practically doesn't matter.

Prominence to also consider:

2001: Caps beat Pittsburgh in Game 1; lose the series in 6.

2003: Caps win the first two games against TB; lose the series in 6

2008: Caps win the first game against the Flyers; lose in 7.

2002: Carolina beats Detroit in OT in Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Finals; Detroit wins the next 4 to win the Cup

2004: Calgary beats TB 4-1 in Game 1 of the Finals; TB wins the Cup in 7.

This series has only begun, folks.

Posted by: PureAgression | April 15, 2009 10:39 PM | Report abuse

Observations from Game 1:

Good teams: Teams with solid defense win - seedings get thrown out the window but tonight you see why Pittsburgh and NJ's seedings are right. They took care of business - the Caps - not so much. Still the same running around in their defensive zone.

DEFENSE AND BACKCHECKING: These two components are the most important if you want to win a championship. Yes goaltending is as well but I'm emphasizing these because they burned the Caps. There is no excuse for letting the Rangers walk in as far as they did over the blueline. Mind as well just've laid out a red carpet to the net. Backchecking - one thing that our talented forwards need to realize that instead of GLIDING back up the ice anticipating a breakout - you need to backcheck and get the damn puck. Why do you see so many teams beating the Caps with a WIDE OPEN late guy coming down the slot or off wing. There's no excuse for any of that. NONE. This defensive zone coverage of Boudreau's sucks. It needs to change.

I SAID IT OVER AND OVER AND I'LL SAY IT AGAIN: This team was much better defensively when they had guys banged up early in the year and call-ups came up and made smart plays with the puck keeping everything to the outside.

JEFF SCHULTZ OUT FOR GOOD - SOMEBODY ELSE IN: I don't care if it's Pothier, Alzner or whoever - but if the Caps FO can sit up there and still believe Schultz deserves to be up here then they are out of their minds. There was no excuse for him committing to the half wall so early. He telegraphed it and got faked out of his jock.

Theodore - I only fault him for the first goal. Second goal (great shot top shelf), third goal (he was screened by his own d-man) and game winner - another great shot but at the same time it never hurts to have your goalie step up and make a huge save in that case.

I've been on edge about our D all year but this loosey goosey letting guys come free in our zone we got away with enough - it's to be no longer tolerated now that the playoffs started. It almost seems like this team has learned NOTHING from last year's early exit. If they don't clean it up and make the necessary adjustments - it's going to be another early exit.

Good news - is they see the Rangers and what they're like under Torts now. We'll see how good this team adjusts.

This was a slap in the face but it's one game folks. Still a long series. Ice breakers and goal shakers.

Posted by: Jonathan6 | April 15, 2009 10:39 PM | Report abuse

@skins1110

hey thanks. when i want spelling lessons i would ask for it, but i didnt.....TOOL

Posted by: _stevo | April 15, 2009 10:40 PM | Report abuse

At Stevo,

What I mean is, Theo is a streaky goal tender, that will never grow tall over night. When he crouches, or goes to the butterfly, forget about top shelf peatnut butter being open up top, he leaves THE WHOLE DAMN PANTRY EXPOSED!!!

Theo is short, and not very wide, leaving LOTS of wholes exposed. He had decent positioning on the Antropov shot, and I also thought on the Gomez and Dubinsky goals. Its just that as a small goaly, you will leave little holes open.

Varly played a huge game for us AT Montreal, and won for us. Granted it wasn't playoffs, but this is at home, in front of our crowd.

Our Dfense is not great, and we play a fun-n-gun style that will give up a few chances a game, that our goalie is expected to save some of. This is nothing new. Our d and our style will not change.

PUT VARLY IN NET FOR GAME 2!! A couple big saves, and it will give everyone confidence.

When BB says Theo's our guy, he's being polite. He basically said Theo should have stopped some of those and that anythign is possible for game to in terms of switching it up.

Posted by: floms | April 15, 2009 10:40 PM | Report abuse

I am not saying it is over, we have 6 more games. But we can't keep controlling all the play only to turn around and give up a cheap goal on the counter-attack.

It is like our guys are busting their tails and carrying the play for extended periods, then we have a defensive blunder or a soft goal let in and all momentum / heart is destroyed.

Posted by: Satts | April 15, 2009 10:40 PM | Report abuse

the other problem you have on this team is your NO TEAM player OV..Its all about ME ME ME with OV !!! too many side shows with this guy ....he never passes

Posted by: StanleyCup1907 | April 15, 2009 10:41 PM | Report abuse

Now that we've lost, I see that a certain troll is back on our boards to bother us.

Posted by: CapsFan75 | April 15, 2009 10:42 PM | Report abuse

see folks the playoffs are all about defense ....or lack of it in the Caps case!

Posted by: StanleyCup1907 | April 15, 2009 10:42 PM | Report abuse

@_stevo, well if you need more help spelling four letter, one syllable words, let me know.

Posted by: skins1110 | April 15, 2009 10:43 PM | Report abuse

THE GOOD NEWS!!!!

1. we hit the cr*p out of them. green and ovie each had a couple of HUGE hits.

2. moreover, we outplayed them consistently _ALL_ game. from start to finish, we were the better team excluding a few bad goals from theo and a couple of embarrassing defensive miscues (that's generous, i know).

2. rangers offense is entirely ineffectual, with the big exception of a few well-placed wristers. statistically, i'm guessing they just got a little lucky

3. we have some serious ringers in the wings in case we keep struggling: alzner, pothier, and varly

4. ovie was dominant all game. he made the whole rangers team look bad.

SOOO.... This game was a f*cking disaster, but I think it could bode really, really well for the caps _IF_ Theo settles down or Varly gets in and steps up. Other teams really won't stand a chance if we can get average goaltending. So chalk this one up to some early nerves or whatever. If we can last long enough to survive, we'll be really dangerous!!

Posted by: TripDonkeys | April 15, 2009 10:43 PM | Report abuse

He didn't pass it through the crease and eventually ended up on Semin's stick for a goal. I saw that.

Posted by: FusilliJerry1 | April 15, 2009 10:44 PM | Report abuse

I completely agree with Moose, you guys need to relax.....yes Schultz is awful, i've been saying it all year. But, They def outplayed the Rangers all night its playoff hockey and it's 7 games for a reason. We didn't get the bounces tonight, let's get back to the basics and get ready for a long series

Posted by: EsMyDee | April 15, 2009 10:44 PM | Report abuse

get use to it !

Posted by: StanleyCup1907 | April 15, 2009 10:44 PM | Report abuse

@loms

NO, varly has played 5 games...to play him in game 2 when we are down 1-0 is not smart. Theo was not at fault for the LOSS tonight. putting varly in saturday is like giving up on the best year in caps history for an experiment

Posted by: _stevo | April 15, 2009 10:45 PM | Report abuse

no that was a shot not a pass

Posted by: StanleyCup1907 | April 15, 2009 10:46 PM | Report abuse

I know this probably won't happen, but I think the caps should look to call up Aucoin and Alzner for the playoffs. I think I remember coach BB saying he doesn't want to mess anything up for the Bears Playoffs, but this is the STANLEY CUP. Put in the players that deserve to play night in and night out. Ex-SCRATCH SCHULTZ!!!!! Bring Alzner up and either put him in in Schultz's spot or don't bring Alzner up, but put pothier back in!!! I think the caps could use brash out there too. I know he would probably only get about 5 to 8 min for a playoff game, but he might give them more intensity out there. But, the caps could use a guy like aucoin out there too. Take steckal out. I don't think he played up to his potential today.

Posted by: Thomas32 | April 15, 2009 10:47 PM | Report abuse

CapsFan75-You are not serious are you? We lose one playoff game and you are already fearing Ovechkin winning a cup elsewhere after demanding a trade? Get a grip.

Posted by: ph0082 | April 15, 2009 10:47 PM | Report abuse

@skinfans...haha,use blogs to try and sound smart, but 10 bucks said your dumbass barely even made it through high school

Posted by: _stevo | April 15, 2009 10:48 PM | Report abuse

13 shots is not the stats of a play maker

Posted by: StanleyCup1907 | April 15, 2009 10:49 PM | Report abuse

Semin's goal should have been unassisted. There was not even an attempt by anyone to pass or set him up.

Posted by: opita1 | April 15, 2009 10:54 PM | Report abuse

@Jonathan6

I don't say this with too many people on this board, but I AGREE WITH YOU COMPLETELY!!! everything you said hit the nail right on the hammer

Posted by: Thomas32 | April 15, 2009 10:57 PM | Report abuse

What do you think about our 5-on-5 scoring chances and play in general? I don't think it was that strong. Yes we hit them, and kept most of the play in their end, but I don't recall that many quality scoring chances 5 on 5?

Posted by: floms | April 15, 2009 11:18 PM | Report abuse

Jose Three-or-more sucks!! Varlamov in Game 2!!!

Posted by: MigMora | April 15, 2009 11:32 PM | Report abuse

What is really distressing about this loss is that(as someone else said many posts before)it confirmed our worst fears.

Mike Wise's article was on target, but all sports writers I have read agreed that the team's main handicap was goaltending and D.

I agree with Satts about the morale-deflating uphill battle of catching up and repairing mistakes, even if we had won:

"It is like our guys are busting their tails and carrying the play for extended periods, then we have a defensive blunder or a soft goal let in and all momentum / heart is destroyed."

I have no idea what BB will or should do. Continue to put his faith in Theo with the thought that he will rise to it? Play Varly thinking that this may re-energize Theo? Wait another three games or so?

With no trades having been made, they are stuck between a streaky veteran goalie and an untested rookie. Which of the two has the best chance of coming through? And is this disatisfaction with D & goal-tending affecting the team's confidence?

Posted by:

Posted by: caraveli | April 16, 2009 12:02 AM | Report abuse

I feel bad for Theo, cause he seems like a really nice guy, but even when he's also making some really good saves, he lets in far too many soft goals. I'd say two were his fault, and even though we should have had a penalty called on one or both of them, that's no excuse.

I kind of feel the same way about Schultz, but while drastically limiting Theo's playing time is not an option, I really don't think Schultz is good enough to be a regular D. I'd rather see Alzner given a shot, and in this situation, playing Pothier is clearly the better option than going with Schultz.

Posted by: hareharey | April 16, 2009 12:18 AM | Report abuse

One word for everyone in the off season: Bouwmeester. GMGM needs to go after him hard this summer.

Posted by: jwash4472 | April 16, 2009 9:33 AM | Report abuse

Last night was no fluke, Theodore is a weak goaltender. It is a gamble, but Boudreau should start Varlamov Saturday. Nobody has faith in Theodore, apparently not even Theodore. Give the fans what they want!

Posted by: rayc2 | April 16, 2009 12:34 PM | Report abuse

HOW ABOUT A POLL FOR HOW BAD WAS JEFF SCHULTZ?!??

WHY DOES THIS PIECE OF TRASH GET A FREE PASS FROM EVERYBODY, TARIK INCLUDED?

HE SUCKS. SUCKS. SUCKS.

Posted by: notfadeaway | April 16, 2009 1:04 PM | Report abuse

Tariq El-Bashir shame on you for not even doing an iota of analyis on Theodore before putting up inflammatory stuff.

A wannabe hockey town all over a goalie who is not THAT much at fault, only on one goal the first one by Gomez where his 5 hole was a 5 lane Beltway. BUT even on that play, Avery trips Green at the blue line allowing Gomez to come in clean. No call. Theodore was 1/1 with Gomez like a penalty shot. His fault? Maybe, but lets get real.

Ovechkin played a full 2 minutes on the Power Play, and LEFT the ice at 5 seconds before PP expired, allowing the play to be set-up to Gomez and that gap in the middle of the ice let Gomez come clean through the blue line and make a perfect set-up to Naslund. No goalie can stop that one! Washington D all standing around, noone took Naslund. Whose fault?

Who let Green play a full 2 minutes on the Power Play that he had nothing in his legs to check Dubinsky after he got around the turd of Washington's defense (Jeff Schultz). Green could do nothing and Theodore was looking for help.

Who let Avery set-up shop in front of Theodore that he could not see the Antropov sizzler. Not many goalies can stop that.

Get real. Here's the real problem. Washingotn plays a run and gun style. They go all out on Power Plays - Ovechkins and Green playing full 2 minutes of two power plays resulted in 2 goals.

Theodore is as good as a goalie can be in a team that is too obsessed with offensive thrusts. With Varlamov, it would have been 7-3.

Posted by: Political_Stratgst | April 16, 2009 2:32 PM | Report abuse

He should have stopped the Gomez wrister even though there were 2 uncalled interference penalities. And he should have stopped the game winning wrister even though Shultz flopped away. Both goal scoring shots have no fake move prior to the shots. Simple one one one, follow the puck. He froze like a deer in headlights and we lost.

Most of the time you score 3 goals on 33 shots and hold the opposing team to 21 shots you win. I guess not this time.

Posted by: GC4Life | April 16, 2009 3:34 PM | Report abuse

It's not ALL Theodore's fault, just MOSTLY his fault. In the playoffs, your goaltending must be on point. It can't be average, and Theo is a below average goaltender. He doesn't even make the occasional exceptional save. Jeff Schultz did look like a big doofus out there as well.

As far as criticizing OV, just shut up now. Whoever says he doesn't pass is drunk on Hater-ade.

Posted by: Kenbeatrizz | April 16, 2009 6:16 PM | Report abuse

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