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Tom Poti expected to make full recovery

Tom Poti didn't want to do his final interview of the season on camera.

Given the swath of stitches on the right side of his face, his blood-filled eye, and the black-and-blue bruise surrounding it, his request was totally understandable.

Poti, the Caps' best defensive defenseman, suffered the gruesome injury in the second period of Game 6 against the Montreal Canadiens and couldn't suit up for Game 7. Still, he might be the most relieved player on the team. Despite the pain of losing in the first round, the 33-year-old will be able to play another NHL game -- which was no sure thing in the hours after Mike Cammalleri's backhander hit him square in the eye.

Doctors "are 100 percent confident I'll make a full recovery," Poti said in his first public comments since getting hurt. "Right now it's a situation where it's very blurry. But it's getting better every day. They say within a week, I'll have a 100 percent vision back. The face will take some time to heal."

Poti said the injury -- and surgery the following day -- was extensive.

"There are four fractures in there, so they put four plates in there, a bunch of screws and stitches," he said. "I broke my orbital bone, nasal bone, another one on this side and the bone that holds all my teeth in, that one shattered, too."

Poti said he was temporarily blinded and that he knew right away that he was in trouble, which is why he headed off the ice during a penalty kill.

"As soon as I got hit, my eye went totally black," he said. "I couldn't see anything at all. I was really scared. I couldn't see anything for at least 24 to 30 hours. They didn't know if I would get the sight back."

As the blood has drained from his right eye, however, his vision has slowly returned.

Poti said he'll take a visor home with him this summer and "toy around" with it and "see if I can get used to it." But he stopped short of committing to wearing one next season.

That hardest part of the past few days, he said, was the helpless feeling he had while watching from a suite at Verizon Center as Game 7 unfolded.

"That sucked," he said. "Not only getting hurt, but having to watch the guys go through that tough loss and not being able to do anything about it made it a lot worse."

By Tarik El-Bashir  |  April 30, 2010; 11:38 AM ET
 | Tags: Tom Poti  
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Next: McPhee backs Boudreau, staff

Comments

Glad he's gonna be OK.

Get well, Potes.

Posted by: Jordan_Kitts | April 30, 2010 11:42 AM | Report abuse

Glad to hear that Tom Poti will be well - it looked pretty bad as he skated off and sounds like he realized that it could have been even worse.

Tom's a decent man as are all of the Caps I've come in contact with or heard others speak of. The grace of Brooks Laich's pay-it-forward moment on the way home after the game speaks volumes.

These guys are going to win. If not this year, then next, the year after, or after that, or maybe all of them. Remember the Islanders in 78-79 - the league's #1 team, the top goal scorer, top assist guy, top points guy, gaudy +/- numbers, and they were stoned by a hot goalie (John Davidson) and team (the Rangers). Then the Islanders ran off 4 straight Stanley Cups.

Posted by: Hattrick56 | April 30, 2010 11:51 AM | Report abuse

Good on Poti.

Another blue collar guy who I'd like to see with the team for a while longer.

Posted by: fesslercw | April 30, 2010 11:52 AM | Report abuse

poo-ti.....get well

Posted by: SA-Town | April 30, 2010 11:54 AM | Report abuse

A few of you, namely htgolf/VTduffman/PhilR have recommended bringing in Lemaire. Do you guys need to be reminded that HIS team was just bounced as the 2nd seed by a team that qualified for the playoffs via a shootout on the last day of the season in only 5 games? Why couldn't he motivate the Devils? Why didn't his system work in the playoffs? Lemaire has won the Stanley Cup as a coach exactly 1 time way back in the 1994-95 season. Since that Stanley Cup win he has made it to the Conference Final 1 time, never even back to the Stanley Cup Finals.

As the Devils coach 1st time around after he won the Cup in 94-95 his seasons went like this:

1995–96 82 37 33 12 — 86 6th in Atlantic Missed playoffs
1996–97 82 45 23 14 — 104 1st in Atlantic Lost in second round
1997–98 82 48 23 11 — 107 1st in Atlantic Lost in first round

Then he went to Minnesota, and granted he had to build a team but once he did, they didn't do well in the playoffs either.

2000–01 82 25 39 13 5 68 5th in Northwest Missed playoffs
2001–02 82 26 35 12 9 73 5th in Northwest Missed playoffs
2002–03 82 42 29 10 1 95 3rd in Northwest Lost in Conf. champ
2003–04 82 30 29 20 3 83 5th in Northwest Missed playoffs
2005–06 82 38 36 — 8 84 5th in Northwest Missed playoffs
2006–07 82 48 26 — 8 104 2nd in Northwest Lost in first round
2007–08 82 44 28 — 10 98 1st in Northwest Lost in first round
2008–09 82 40 33 — 9 89 3rd in Northwest Missed playoffs

One could argue that Lemaire's system works well during the regular season, but not in the playoffs except for 1 Stanley Cup and 1 Conference final. His Stanley Cup was won with a young Brodeur that stole A LOT of games that year during the playoffs.

My point is that heart broken and ticked off fans would make knee-jerk reactions if they were in charge right now. I get it, but now is not the time to do that.

Posted by: fanohock1 | April 30, 2010 11:57 AM | Report abuse

I think BB deserves another year but if they're gonna make a change both he and GMGM will have to go.

then they should hire Yzerman as the new GM and let him bring in a new coach.

Posted by: joek443 | April 30, 2010 12:03 PM | Report abuse

Poor guy.

I think people should feel most bad for Poti and Belanger, they literally gave body parts for this team. :(

Talk about "sacrifice."

- Ray

Posted by: rmcazz | April 30, 2010 12:04 PM | Report abuse

@fanohock1 : Thanks for laying out the Lemaire record. I have followed his coaching career closely (having lived in NJ for 18 years) and your points are right on the money. But, what they could learn from Lemaire (or possibly just someone who played for him for a long time) is his PK system. Apparently, he taught it to Babcock for the Olympics and it helped Team Canada a lot. So, I don't advocate bringing him in as head coach, but I'd love to see him or one of his former players or coaches brought in as an assistant or consultant to the PK. Maybe Fetisov is available to coach.

Posted by: ccCapsfan | April 30, 2010 12:08 PM | Report abuse

Exactly how many of these terrifying injuries do we have to go through before the league mandates visors? Or for that matter, cages, like they do in college?

The AHL already mandates visors and there have been studies that indicate that visors or cages not only reduce the risk of catastrophic eye injuries, but also concussions. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19703823

Players might not like them, hell they didn't like helmets and goalies didn't like pads. Maybe they'll get over it when there friends can still see when their 50.

Also, I'm really glad Poti is going to be all right, he was dynamite in the series.

Posted by: dwelkinor | April 30, 2010 12:08 PM | Report abuse

I am also hopeful that the Capitals retain Mike Green because I do not want to watch another offensive defenseman leave the Capitals only to see them hoist the Cup for another team. Gonchar, although he wanted to leave, was the last offensive defenseman to leave and do it. He was MORE of a disaster in the playoffs single handedly fumbling the puck just inside our blue line on a routine play, to a Penguin, in the back of the net in OT. in 2008, 2009, and this year, he is the QB of the Penguins PP. I certainly hope Green doesn't take 10 more years to make it to the Cup Finals (Gonchar was 34) but Green is young and getting better every year.

In my humble opinion, all we need to do is get Backs signed to a 5-6 year deal, get the crease clearing stay at home "D", which hopefully in Volchenkov, who I campaigning for, even on this board, at the trade deadline, and last but not least a 2nd line center. The 2nd line center makes things better for Semin too. Semin has constantly dealt with different combinations on HIS line and he still managed 40 goals. If he can enter the playoffs with a true 2nd line center, and wing partner that he has worked with all season, I believe his playoff success will improve greatly.

Posted by: fanohock1 | April 30, 2010 12:09 PM | Report abuse

give #3 the "C"

Posted by: mcintire_will | April 30, 2010 12:09 PM | Report abuse

Thanks for the update about Tom Poti. I am happy to hear about his improving prognosis. Please continue to keep us updated on his condition.

Posted by: Terptwin | April 30, 2010 12:15 PM | Report abuse

Reading the description of his injury gave me chills. Glad he'll be okay. Get well Poti.

Posted by: letsgocaps3 | April 30, 2010 12:16 PM | Report abuse

@fanohock1,

I only say Lemaire as he is an example of a no nonsense coach who would not be these guys buddy and wouldn't put up with players taking half the game off. Doesn't have to be Lemaire just in the Lemaire mode of no nonsense and holding his players accountable.

And yes, his team did lose in the first round this year which was no real suprise as that etam had no offense whatsoever and rode Brodeur to the playoffs. That is on the GM not the coach when you have no offensive talent to coach.

Posted by: PhilR | April 30, 2010 12:27 PM | Report abuse

Really am glad that Poti's OK as well. He's really a down to earth person. Didn't mind shooting the bull at the season ticket holder event the last couple of years. I'm also glad we have him for one more year.

D combos if I get my choice:

Schultz/Green, Alzner/Carlson, Poti/Volchenkov. The Poti/Volchenkov combo could be used to shut down the other teams top line giving Green way more opportunities to inject O without the burder of being in the shutdown pair as well. As his game developes he can go back to having both roles. He definitely showed improvement in that respect during the regular season. IMO he simply tried to do too much in Game 7 and it backfired on his resulting in the bad penalty near the end of the 1st resulting in the PP goal. I would still never accuse him of not caring, hockey is his friggin' life.

Posted by: fanohock1 | April 30, 2010 12:28 PM | Report abuse

Just got word of Montreal's game plan for game 1 against the Pens. Do their best to block 40 shots, get an early goal, stand in the shooting gallery, I mean their zone, and hope Halak makes 40-50 saves, and float the puck to the neutral zone as much as possible. Jacques Martin is a GENIOUS!

Posted by: fanohock1 | April 30, 2010 12:30 PM | Report abuse

I had to wait several days before commenting. So much disappointment. Starting at the top, the coach should not be playing anyone 25-28 minutes a game during the regular season, roll 4 lines and 3 pairs. Dont worry about every game, play the young guys(Alzner should have been playing since October).The 2nd Center may be in Sweden as we write. Johanson (sp), Start him in October and let him play. When this team played at it's best the 4 lines were left alone and everyone played well, rolling all 4. Ovie has to go to every practice unless he is injured period, lead from the front. If the Captain takes off, so can everyone else. The team as a whole has to gear down during the regular season somewhat. NO one can go 100% for 6 months, not happening, Finish 4th or 5th or 8th for that matter during the regular season.
Get the physical defensemen and veteran leader for the blueline. Sorry Poti does not appear to be that guy. There was no commitment on the blueline to block shots, and hit people. I dont know how to do this, but stop being complacient. I thought some time ago that this series was like the regular season, thinking they could turn it on when ever they wanted to, oops, so can the other team in the playoffs.
All in all I have nothing different to add I guess, we all know what needs to be done, ah some of the venting complete. Lets keep the expectation down for next year until this group can prove they have earned it.
Rich

Posted by: RichC3 | April 30, 2010 12:31 PM | Report abuse

ohhh man, I mean GENIUS. TGIF.

Posted by: fanohock1 | April 30, 2010 12:33 PM | Report abuse

Caps owenership needs to look the team, coaching staff and system and bring some balance to the overall product. If you keep doing the same thing, people are going to figure it out.

Ovie needs to learn the word team.

Posted by: doughless | April 30, 2010 12:34 PM | Report abuse

lets stop making excuses, Semin is a headcase. Sign Backstrom longterm, look for a deal for Semin. Is the hit for trying to sign BAckstrom and Semin to longterm deals woth it???

The Caps have too much talent at the AHL level that can be brought up to lock all of the money away to make Backstrom AND Semin deals. Chalk it up to experience and send Semin to a team that could use his regular season production knowing that he is a ghost at playoff time. also, bye bye flash.

Posted by: doughless | April 30, 2010 12:36 PM | Report abuse

One more thought for now, the thing that was the biggest loser frankly was the system. They are fun, fun, fun to watch during the regular season, but it does not work clearly for the playoffs. There was no change, next gear what ever you want to call it. Also Move Semin over to left wing, and put Fehr on the 2nd line. He earned it, one of the few that played better in playoffs, 3 goals in 7 games,that is close to a 40 goal regular season if given the ice time. After 36 years, this team if not careful will turn into the Cubs. Fun to watch but will break your heart every year.

Posted by: RichC3 | April 30, 2010 12:47 PM | Report abuse

fanohock:

GENIUS enough to beat the Caps. you need some new schtick.

Posted by: doughless | April 30, 2010 12:47 PM | Report abuse

TARIK & everybody:

There is one glaring detail that does not fit with the conclusion that the team is not built for playoffs and must change its personality, and this is our performance in the games we won. In game 3 (I think) we chased away Halak. We silenced the crowd in Montreal for 2 consecutive games where we beat the Habs convincingly. We had the Habs scared. We were at our best. All the analysts then praised all the elements they now say should be changed.

It is true that this is what disappointed and angered us--that we inexplicably took our foot off the petal and emboldened the Habs, making a monster out Halak. But this is a different thing to correct than the team's entire personality and strategy. What happens when we don't build on a lead and how do we defeat ourselves.

But this is my point: if, as Boswell says, the team was not made for the playoffs, why did we play so well in at least two games? I wish some of the analysts would explain this.

Ed Frankovic's analysis in "Caps don't change a thing," makes sense to me now. Yes, Boswell makes some good points but you don't toss the pieces that catapulted the team from the bottom to the top of the NHL. You build on the strengths, enhancing and adapting them as needed.

I CANNOT believe people asking that we get rid of BB and GM who engineered the current success.

Posted by: caraveli | April 30, 2010 12:49 PM | Report abuse

I'm relieved about Poti's prognosis. I saw the video later, and it was horrifically grisly. To me he was the opposite of Green - he made smart decisions and picked UP his game for the playoffs.

He's not Hall Gill, Anton Volchenkov, Scott Niedermayer, Chris Pronger, or any other body-hurling, crushing check, shut down D fans are lusting for (maybe gmgm will finally see the light and get us one of those?), but he still has a role to play. I hope he sticks with a visor, though I noticed Brooksie dropped his as soon as they cleared him to.

Posted by: blackjack65 | April 30, 2010 12:56 PM | Report abuse

caraveli:

what you fail to acknowledge is that the Habs adjusted and won 3 STRAIGHT. since under Boudreau there is no alternate strategy, the Caps lost.
who gives a flying crap about playing "well." we didn't WIN a series that the entire freaky hockey world pretty much said should be a walk for the Caps.

stop deluding yourself, my man. Boudreau is a one trick pony right now. if he can't learn how to adjust, this team will find itself in a similar situation in the future and his rotund a** will find himself packing.

Posted by: doughless | April 30, 2010 12:58 PM | Report abuse

also, how do folks here define "success". was this a successful year from the Caps?

Posted by: doughless | April 30, 2010 1:01 PM | Report abuse

Semin had 5g 3a in the Flyers series in 2008. 6g 3a in the Rangers series, and 0g 6a in last playoffs. It is true that he didn't rack up points this year, but until now, he's been doing well.

Speaking of a new schtick why don't you come one here talking doing something other than trashing your team, and talking about their lack of hitting (not today yet)?

Besides Aucoin and Matty P, no other farm hand has come up at forward and raised any eyebrows. You get what you pay for. BTW, the guys that are on the big team now...Green, Schultz, Flash, Laich, Steckel...they represent the last group from Hershey that was successful.

Posted by: fanohock1 | April 30, 2010 1:06 PM | Report abuse

Sorry to disagree with you caraveli but playing two games well in a series does nto make a team playoff ready. The Caps have soooooooo much more talent than the Habs, that series should have been over in five. So why did it go longer? The system/coach did not adapt to the things the Habs did to slow dow n the Caps offense plain and simple. Sorry, like was stated by someone earlier this should have happened last year against the Rags as they played the same way against us and the team happened to have luck on its side and won. BB should have learned from that series last year and had a plan in place for a team playing that exact smae style this year in the playoffs, he did not and that is why I feel he must pay.

Once more, you can not be a buddy to your players, they will not respect you or heed any warnings that come out of your mouth. How many games this year did this team simply not show up until the third period and it was ALLOWED by BB. So, they get to the playoffs and feel they can do the same thing and get away with it.....surprise! The playoffs are a completely different animal.

Posted by: PhilR | April 30, 2010 1:06 PM | Report abuse

Very good post, caraveli. I very much agree.

Posted by: TheDoubleAlex | April 30, 2010 1:07 PM | Report abuse

What is this 0-for-21 stat that TK keeps spouting about when the Caps were up 2-0 in best-of-5 series and 3-1 in best-of-7s? I'm confused because there are four occasions in which the Caps closed out series from 2-0 and 3-1.

Posted by: redskinsfreak | April 30, 2010 1:07 PM | Report abuse

I did not hear TK, but I am guessing number of times in playoffs, and how many cups...

Posted by: RichC3 | April 30, 2010 1:11 PM | Report abuse

I CANNOT believe people asking that we get rid of BB and GM who engineered the current success.

Posted by: caraveli | April 30, 2010 12:49 PM | Report abuse

I'd get rid of GMGM before I would consider getting rid of BB, basically leaving it up to the new GM to decide whether or not to keep BB.

GMGM has been here for 13 years now and what has he exactly done that's so extraordinary for him to be considered almost untouchable?? One trip to the Finals doesn't warrant a lifetime contract.

Posted by: joek443 | April 30, 2010 1:13 PM | Report abuse

1 bum outta 5 from the last Hershey class aint bad. and what were Semin's numbers in the 2010 playoffs?? until now was the regular season, fanohock. regualr season does not = playoffs. what was that, no goals in 14 straight playoff games?? get serious, given his playoff performance, he does not deserve the 6.5 mill he will get next year. there is no telling what the guy thinks he is worth in his warped reality. but from my perspective, he ain't worth it. Sign Backie, deal Semin.

Posted by: doughless | April 30, 2010 1:15 PM | Report abuse

I swear I watched a different set of games (5-7) than some of you. What exactly did the Canadiens do to adjust to win the last 3 games? Really, please, tell me already, what??? They blocked 30 plus shots a game and the Caps still got 134 on net, and if you guys want to trash the Caps so badly to say they were all routine shots I raise the BS flag. In games 5-7 there were occasions where there were Montreal defenseman and Halak laying on the ice trying to keep the puck out of the net. They won because of HALAK PERIOD. Just listen the Habs that got interviewed, including Martin, they claim nothing more than that. The Caps came in waves and Halak had the answer. No other team that advanced in the playoffs were so territorily dominated and outshot. The Sharks lost game in which they had 50 shots as well including a 1-0 OT shutout. Anderson is the only reason that series wasn't over sooner. Halak got to get his 2nd wind after watching most of games 3 and all of game 4. Anderson didn't have that luxury. Not sure how many of you saw game 6 of the Sharks/Avs game, but Anderson was finally spent.

I have a feeling Halak is spent now too.

Posted by: fanohock1 | April 30, 2010 1:17 PM | Report abuse

@carvelli

I agree. Very good post.

Posted by: sgm3 | April 30, 2010 1:17 PM | Report abuse

Previous post:

@doughless

I did read the Tarik article. The first thing that jumped out was their conclusion that no overhaul or drastic changes are needed. Just some tinkering.

On Ovie, he was the Caps best player throughout the series. He had 5G 5A and was a +5. In addition, when the team was down 1-0 in game 7 at the start of the third period, Ovie came out hard and scored a goal in 24 seconds (later wrongly ruled a no-goal). He made that big play when the team needed it. It was a garbage call that should be considered when talking about Ovie's contributions.

I do agree that Ovie needs to work on some of the small things such as defensive positioning, handling the puck at the point on the PP (he needs to practice keeping the puck in with hi backhand when it is coming out along the boards).

So he needs to make improvements, absolutely.

Personally, even before I read the Fedorov article, I think the best coaching change the Caps could make would be to hire Fedorov as an assistant (pay him whatever). Then have Ovie and Semin spend a lot of time with Fedorov so Sergei can teach them all the stuff he learned from Scotty Bowman in Detroit. I think Fedorov would be the perfect mentor for Ovie and Semin and he seems to be able to calm them down when needed.

Posted by: sgm3 | April 30, 2010 1:20 PM | Report abuse

the Caps are the FIRST one seed to lose to a 8 seed after building a 3 games to 1 lead in the series so the people who say they don't need to change much are very much in denial.

And what I've heard so far the people in charge are very much in denial as well. There is a reason why something like that NEVER happened before wednesday night. The people who don't realize that are just fooling themselves.

Posted by: joek443 | April 30, 2010 1:25 PM | Report abuse

I'd get rid of GMGM before I would consider getting rid of BB, basically leaving it up to the new GM to decide whether or not to keep BB.

GMGM has been here for 13 years now and what has he exactly done that's so extraordinary for him to be considered almost untouchable?? One trip to the Finals doesn't warrant a lifetime contract.

Posted by: joek443 | April 30, 2010 1:13 PM | Report abuse

well, his first few years were a disaster. the finals were poile's team. however, you can't argue that his drafting over the last five years has been pretty good and the trades he's made to get those picks have been outstanding. i also think he's done a good job of not screwing up in FA like some other teams have. knuble was a GREAT signing.

outside of 08 playoff run, i think he needs to be a little more willing to part with prospects at the deadline. he did ok this year, but not good enough.

proof will be in the pudding on july 1. no excuse not to secure a number 2 center and some defensive help...

Posted by: dcsportsfan1 | April 30, 2010 1:27 PM | Report abuse

Mike Green, Alexander Semin and Tomas Fleischmann did not speak to reporters today. Shocked, I tell you.
4 minutes ago via TweetDeck

gee what a shock... bet they are glad they have a longer summer now and party!!!

Posted by: joek443 | April 30, 2010 1:29 PM | Report abuse

caraveli:

what you fail to acknowledge is that the Habs adjusted and won 3 STRAIGHT. since under Boudreau there is no alternate strategy, the Caps lost.
who gives a flying crap about playing "well." we didn't WIN a series that the entire freaky hockey world pretty much said should be a walk for the Caps.

doughless & Phil R

You are not really disagreeing with me. You are both saying that the problem was figuring out how to adapt ("Boudreau is a one trick pony right now".) And this must be the reason why it seemed like we took our foot off the pedal suddenly. They figured out how to get around our strategy and, instead of changing strategy, we kept doing the same thing.

This is DIFFERENT from saying that the team has to be defensive rather than defensive or that they should fire people. I think you both put your finger on the problem: to be able to adapt on the fly and have more than one plans for winning. But this does not involve a drastic personality change--just developing more capabilities and systems.

And, by the way, I am not a man.

Posted by: caraveli | April 30, 2010 1:31 PM | Report abuse

"They won because of HALAK PERIOD"

1 guy beat the entire team...right.

in denial

Posted by: doughless | April 30, 2010 1:34 PM | Report abuse

How much did the Sharks change in the offseason after losing in 6 games to the #8 seed last year? Their top players are still there and they brought in Heatley. That deal fell in their lap though because if Heatley would approved an earlier deal he would have been in Edmonton. Ottawa just wanted to get rid of Heatley. BTW Heatley finally scored his 1st goal of the playoffs last night.

Posted by: fanohock1 | April 30, 2010 1:34 PM | Report abuse

Great news that Poti is going to regain 100% of his vision and resume his career. Equally happy that he'll be here another year with the Caps as he is our most consistent defenseman. That said, the Caps sorely need a tough, stay at home defenseman who can and will block shots. I pushed for Volchenkov (sp.) at the trade deadline and think he's be a major upgrade. Also, BB needs to break up the Schultz/Green pairing and put a mobile, defensive defenseman like Poti with Green. Green's mistakes on defense and forays on offense wouldn't be so noticeable if he had someone playing with him who could cover his mistakes.

Posted by: wizfan89 | April 30, 2010 1:35 PM | Report abuse

my woman! how am i supposed to know?

Posted by: doughless | April 30, 2010 1:37 PM | Report abuse

@joek443

Yes, because if they were tied 2-2 and lost in seven games that would change the entire way we would view the team. You say people are fooling themselves, but you are slanting stats to try to fool yourself. They are also the first team, with a #1 seed, from an east cost city that begins with the letter W to blow a 3-1 series lead. Should I continue.

Arbitrary stats like that are meaningless when determining how to proceed. All that matters is the team lost in 7 games in the first round.

As almost every hockey analyst has said, it would be foolish to make wholesale changes. Just as Ted has said, changes are necessary but not wholesale changes. No one is saying to proceed the same way.

It always amazes me how some people don't have the ability to see that there are more than two ways to proceed on things. Some people think the only action can be make no changes or make wholesale changes. Guess what, there is an area in between those choices.

Posted by: sgm3 | April 30, 2010 1:39 PM | Report abuse

134 shots 131 saves. Yes, 1 man won the series for Montreal. When we entered the playoffs so many on here (honestly don't know if you were one of them doughless) said that our goaltending was suspect and that everyone knows that a good defense and hot goaltending can win a Stanley Cup. Well, there were 134 shots in 3 games, so there was far from good defense, 131 saves resulting in a save percentage of 97.7% is knock out goaltending. How many times did you see a Canadiens player tapping Halak on the pads after a flurry and shaking their head while talking to him? They were in awe of his performance too. No matter what I say some of you were just waiting, hoping, for the Caps to collapse so you could do what you are doing now. Denying it is rediculous because the same ones that have been here trashing the Caps since the end of game 5 are the same ones that were trashing the Caps when they'd lose a game or explain how lucky the Caps were to win a game during the regular season.

Posted by: fanohock1 | April 30, 2010 1:42 PM | Report abuse

speaking for myself, i am not advocating deconstructing the team. more balance on the ice, but also in the system they play. the question is does Boudreau have it in him??

Posted by: doughless | April 30, 2010 1:42 PM | Report abuse

the Caps are the FIRST one seed to lose to a 8 seed after building a 3 games to 1 lead in the series so the people who say they don't need to change much are very much in denial.

And what I've heard so far the people in charge are very much in denial as well. There is a reason why something like that NEVER happened before wednesday night. The people who don't realize that are just fooling themselves.

Posted by: joek443 | April 30, 2010 1:25 PM | Report abuse

whats worse, losing up 3-1 to an 8 seed like the caps or losing in 6 games to an 8 seed like last years sharks? losing is losing. sharks didnt fire their coach or gm, didnt ditch thornton or marleau. they filled some holes buy getting heatley and letting some guys go. so far they are doing ok in the playoffs. would not be surprised to see them get to the cup finals.

some changes will be made. IMO, most changes need to come between the ears of the top players when april rolls around.

Posted by: dcsportsfan1 | April 30, 2010 1:43 PM | Report abuse

@doughless

From Dan Ellis of the Nashville Predators.

"Sad to see ppl dogging the caps so hard. They ran into a goalie that stole the series. Get thru the kitchen sink and all. Leave it at that!"

Posted by: sgm3 | April 30, 2010 1:46 PM | Report abuse

dude (maybe i shouldn't suppose you are a dude), i am not denying how Halak played. but to say he is the ONLY reason is just denying all of the other factors and shortcomings that are being pointed out by a good portion of the hockey world.

Posted by: doughless | April 30, 2010 1:48 PM | Report abuse

sgm3: Dan Ellis has no idea what he is talking about. He is only an NHL goaltender. Now doughless, and everyone else who claims Halak is not the reason the Canadiens are in Pittsburgh tonight knows what they are talking about. By the way, I am a man, or dude, as you would say doughless.

I don't blame players for not wanting to talk to the media. They just aren't ready. If anyone on this board thinks we are more upset about losing the series than any one of those Capitals, you are a fool. This will be eating at them in May, June, July, August, and September, when many of us will be having a nice vacation and cheering for our favorite baseball and football teams. As a matter of fact it will be eating at them until the 1st game of playoffs next year when they can redeem themselves. Some of them know they probably won't be back to have a shot with a team like the Capitals. I believe Flash might have proven himself expendable.

Posted by: fanohock1 | April 30, 2010 1:58 PM | Report abuse

did someone get that quote from Dan Ellis while he was out on the golf course?? I appreciate the hot goalie thing. reread the today's WAPO sports page. if people here insist that the series loss had NOTHING to do with the Capitals and the way they played, that it was SOLELY due to a hot goalie, then you need to keep rockin the red all summer long. i think you are wrong.

Posted by: doughless | April 30, 2010 1:58 PM | Report abuse

Could it not be surmised that the less-structured, let top stars take it in themselves, high-scoring system as it's been for the past couple of years -- served its purpose in gaudy point totals, Presidents' Cup, allowing Ovechkin to become a highlight-reel player? This, after all, was instrumental in putting fans in the seats and getting the Caps broad attention outside of purely hockey circles.

Now work on a better system, and like someone said higher up, don't worry so much about game-to-game in the regular season. Worry about mentoring Ovie's leadership qualities, not his skills -- Caps have many, many years of top-notch pure talent from him left. Use young players, use many lines, etc.

As for the "he's a player's coach ..." I'd like the more encyclopaedic readers here to help me out: What are some examples of "player's coaches" who have won the Cup?

Posted by: scrappledog | April 30, 2010 2:20 PM | Report abuse

*** (The first part of my post didn't come out as I intended as a big chunk got cut before I hit post. Basically what I mean to say is it developed and established the Caps' "brand." Now onward?) ***

Posted by: scrappledog | April 30, 2010 2:26 PM | Report abuse

@fanohock1: I award you the first star of the blog thread. Caraveli: you're 2nd, sgm3: 3rd.

Posted by: dccitizen1 | April 30, 2010 4:46 PM | Report abuse

Listen Caps fans. One man did NOT win the series.... if so, your team was really off. Montreal WON the series...because of team work - let me repeat, MONTREAL WON THE SERIES.

Posted by: joseelarocque | May 1, 2010 8:00 PM | Report abuse

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