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Posted at 11:07 AM ET, 02/15/2011

Caps' power play shows signs of life in Phoenix

By Katie Carrera

Most often lately, the Capitals' power play hasn't offered reason for hope that it might be able to buck the trend of ineffectiveness that began in early December. Against the Coyotes last night, though, Washington's power play created chances, moved the puck well and held possession for lengths of time that allowed for opportunities to unfold.

For all of those positive elements, though, the number of shots the Capitals were able to take on the man advantage (14) against Phoenix and the chances that emerged only seemed to be a cruel tease as they couldn't find a way to put the puck in the net.

"They were moving it around, they looked like a power play," Coach Bruce Boudreau said. "Our entries were fine, I thought for sure we were going to score a couple goals on it but sometimes it's not meant to be."

Reality is the Capitals are not going to suddenly begin scoring the same number of goals at even strength that they have in the past. The tighter play in their own end -- where all five skaters drop down low to pitch in defensively and aren't halfway up the ice so they have a head start when a puck bounces out -- has resulted in fewer odd-man rushes. That in turn leads to fewer scoring chances.

But where Washington can make up for that decline is on the power play. The lack of goals there, a staggering 3 for 43 in the last 14 games, is arguably the team's biggest problem right now. If the power play were working, it would be a sign that the Capitals' stars are doing their part and working their way out of their simultaneous slumps. It would also provide support for the goaltending and defense that has been surprising with its own steadiness.

It's somewhat bewildering to see the Capitals, with their abundance of talent and the same players on the power play that ran the league's best unit a season ago, struggle this mightily, but last night there were signs of encouragement.

"I think the power play control the puck really well but we just didn't score," Alex Ovechkin said. "We have pretty good chances but we just didn't score. I think we just have to continue doing what we're doing right now on the power play.... It's a tough game but I think we play well. But if you play well and you lose, it's seems you played not that well."

Following the morning skate in Phoenix, Brooks Laich commented on what he believed would make the power play successful again. His list included traits that the Capitals possessed on a regular basis against the Coyotes.

"It starts with good puck movement, I think. Just crisp passes on the tape and having possession and from there we have plays we can use but it's just working together and not getting frustrated," Laich said. "Everyone the power play is obviously very capable of handling the puck and capable of making plays, but you have to trust in your teammates and trust what they're going to do and work with each other."

Laich also brought up the intrinsic influence that the power play -- whether doing well or poorly -- has on the team's psyche as a whole.

"A strong power play for us leads into a good hockey game," Laich said. "When our team isn't winning games, our power play isn't scoring. That's usually what happens with us."

By Katie Carrera  | February 15, 2011; 11:07 AM ET
Categories:  Power play  
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Next: Line change: Readers weigh in on how to motivate Caps

Comments

A sign of life would be goals. I didn't see any last night nor for the past 3 months. I'm worried GMGM is going to wait to make a move(if at all) until after the road trip...that is the rumor. There may be no one left by then.

Posted by: lylewimbledon | February 15, 2011 11:18 AM | Report abuse

The only move I want to see is GMGM moving on his way out.

The new GM should then address the coaching if felt necessary.

Posted by: rblatch45 | February 15, 2011 11:24 AM | Report abuse

@fanohock, weren't you one of the guys bustin' on Cstanton when he was ringing the bell about what pansies BB and these boys were ?

Posted by: Hunterforcoach | February 15, 2011 9:49 AM | Report abuse

Yup, absolutely. Even before you decided you needed to type in ALL CAPS the last couple of days demanding apologies I have been on here conceeding that cstanton1 provides solid criticism with sound feedback instead of stand up comedy zingers.

Posted by: fanohock1 | February 15, 2011 11:12 AM | Report abuse

Posted by: fanohock1 | February 15, 2011 11:28 AM | Report abuse

So, with Fisher and Versteeg gone...who are the Caps after now?

Posted by: SoaringCaps | February 15, 2011 11:31 AM | Report abuse

Fire Boudreau!

Posted by: jmarks09 | February 15, 2011 11:33 AM | Report abuse

These guys put too much into the power play. Yeah, they are struggling, but it shouldn't have that big of an effect on the rest of the game. Power plays are a small part of it. On the season had they scored only 5 more goals they'd have a top 10 PP unit. Only five goals. IN the playoffs its a difference maker as one goal here and there can mean the difference between beating Montreal or losing, but no excuse in the regular season. If they play every night on the power play like last night I think eventually it should start to click. Problem is, it seldom looks like it did last night.

Posted by: jimc93 | February 15, 2011 11:35 AM | Report abuse

ooops...missed a column. 5 more goals gets em in the top 15, 9 to the top 10. My bad. Still 5 goals over the course of a season is not a lot. 9 isn't a lot either.

Posted by: jimc93 | February 15, 2011 11:40 AM | Report abuse

1) I had to LOL reading the headline of this post. Has the bar fallen so low that now a few shots on goal is what passes for "signs of life?" That should be the status quo, or the expected
2) Signs of life would have been a 2-5 evening, not another shut out with the extra man- again!
3) There is NO deadline addition that is going to change th tide here folks. I'm wondering if even a coaching change(which needs to happen NOW!) would make this team into a contendor to win a playoff round
4) As is, this team might not even qualify for the post season, and if they did, be run out of the rink in 4 games.

Posted by: jmol2112 | February 15, 2011 11:41 AM | Report abuse

jimc93: You couldn't be more wrong. In these 1 goal games and OT losses if the Capitals would have cashed in on 1 PP goal in those games they win. They have gone 0 for 5 and worse in games they have lost by one goal, or in OT. A successful powerplay makes teams like Phoenix who play a defensive style have to open things up because they are playing from behind rather than being able to sit back and capitalize on a turnover.

Posted by: fanohock1 | February 15, 2011 11:44 AM | Report abuse

The PP definitely looked better last night than it has in a while. Hopefully it will carry over into the next game and lead to some goals, but until it does it is relatively meaninglesss.

Posted by: sgm3 | February 15, 2011 11:46 AM | Report abuse

I'm just going to echo what jmol2112 said.

They go 0 for 5 and that is signs of life? Seriously? Yes they moved the puck better and shot more...but there is no way you can post an article with that title at this point!

I love Katie and all, but I'd like to see some questions with meat on them.

Posted by: bloodontheice | February 15, 2011 11:47 AM | Report abuse

"Our entries were fine, I thought for sure we were going to score a couple goals on it but sometimes it's not meant to be."

This is the part that doesn't sit well with me. They need to find a way to grab Fate by the throat and punch it repeatedly until it becomes meant to be. I don't know how to accomplish that, I'm not in the business. I do know that what's going on now isn't working, and sitting around waiting for the bounces to go your way isn't going to accomplish anything.

Posted by: Brute | February 15, 2011 11:49 AM | Report abuse

i think the more troubling thing going on is that at times they look dis-interested...you can say all you want about they make huge dollars and shouldn't need additional motivation...but they're human...i wonder if boudreau has lost his ability to properly motivate these guys...does he not have the ability to coach them up on the ice in a different system...if they have a bad road trip G.M. might have to make a change to light a fire...not saying he should,...just sayin'

Posted by: carsonspence | February 15, 2011 11:51 AM | Report abuse

Greetings! I from Russia, from a city of St.-Petersburg. I support Washington 4 years when will expel Budro???, the command goes on a bottom!!!

Posted by: 7387044 | February 15, 2011 11:52 AM | Report abuse

So I have an idea.

If we put a list together and get a good group, number wise, we could get a really good rate for the, We washed out again golf tournament on April 10.

Its not like we Caps fans will have any thing to do after the 9th :)

Posted by: bqts | February 15, 2011 11:52 AM | Report abuse

My predictions for possible players the Caps go after before the trade deadline:

1) Thomas Fleischmann
2) Milan Jurcina
3) Eric Belanger
4) Brendan Morrison
5) Shaone Morrison
6) Jose Theodore
7) Brendan Witt

There are more...but these will provide us with depth, and FINALLY complete our defense. I just hope they arent in such high demand, the price sky rockets and we have to give up all our prospects and picks. They are what we want, we will go after them, and we will get them.

Posted by: SeminAllOverTheIce | February 15, 2011 11:52 AM | Report abuse

Today is Tuesday, exactly 1 week from when the CAPS will return from a 'disappointing' round trip by dropping 4 of 5. There are now 7 days left in BB's tenure as the coach of the CAPs, as Mcphee will fire him next Tuesday.

Posted by: festus75 | February 15, 2011 11:52 AM | Report abuse

must say...kinda happy to see Belanger shove that one up our...he deserved better treatment from our "first class" organization.

Posted by: lylewimbledon | February 15, 2011 12:03 PM | Report abuse

Anybody ever think that "all of this talent" just isn't really that much talent?

Posted by: CTCapsPhan | February 15, 2011 12:03 PM | Report abuse

@hunterforcoach - re: your earlier post calling out the koolaiders to apologize:

first - drunk blogging is fun! Good for you!
second - I'm a Koolaider - GMGM has brought in some great talent and not only in the early picks. I like BB but...
third - some of these guys are doing this back-and-forth (sgm3, cs1, etc) and having fun with it. We don't need a peace delegation...
fourth - I myself have enjoyed everyone's posts, even when I disagree...

Posted by: RedLitYogi | February 15, 2011 12:03 PM | Report abuse

LOL. This is loser talk. Sounds like the Wizards...

Posted by: Albright4Snapper | February 15, 2011 12:04 PM | Report abuse

@ festus75

The more I think about it the more I think your wrong. While I am not saying it shouldn't happen I am saying it won't happen.

If GmGm was actually to grow a pair and step up to the plate and can BB, what would be left between him and what may come from that point on, other than his scarf???

BB is here till the summer which starts April 10th.

Posted by: bqts | February 15, 2011 12:06 PM | Report abuse

The saga of the Caps tracks the saga of the Semin. Nothing since November. Listening to the Versus announcers dump on Semin told it all. Only one person in this hockey world thinks he is worth a gold mine - GMGM. It is Semin who has done totally nothing since November, was the one slowing down the powerplay at the half boards last night, and turned over the puck at the blue line time after time.

But we played better, big deal.

My January 1 sealed prediction (opps) that the Caps would not even make the playoffs is looking pretty good these days. Hint: Watch Buffalo, not Atlanta

I will probably stay up late on Wed/Thu. Why? A diehard. An angry diehard.

Posted by: trfnews | February 15, 2011 12:06 PM | Report abuse

re: Versteeg.
Flyers overpaid, no? This means the Flyers will try to move a forward. I wonder who? I'm glad the Caps didn't make that move.

re: Semin
he should not be playing - if he's hurt, he needs to get better because what he's doing out there now is not helping the team. Give him another week off, then get him some conditioning in Hershey, then let him rejoin for the final weeks...

Posted by: RedLitYogi | February 15, 2011 12:06 PM | Report abuse

I remember the days when Cheef/Chief was on this board. Richmondphil was around and Tominsocal was still in Fla. Even Cstanton1 doesn't seem to be posting like he used to. It's a shame.

Those were the good old days.

Posted by: Fro_2 | February 15, 2011 12:06 PM | Report abuse

From ESPN

Does the netting of Kris Versteeg make other forwards with the Philadelphia Flyers expendable?

Columnist Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun believes so:

"With Kris Versteeg joining the Flyers, expect to see either Daniel Carcillo or Jody Shelley get shopped before the deadline".

You can bet the Flyers are willing to move the 35-year-old Shelley, but with two years left ($1.1 million) on his contract, it wouldn't be easy.

On the other hand, as a pending restricted free agent, Carcillo is fairly attractive as a trade deadline rental. The 26-year-old offers a bit of grit and offensive upside, which is exactly what a team like the Chicago Blackhawks may be pursuing.

Posted by: bqts | February 15, 2011 12:09 PM | Report abuse

@RedLitYogi

I would have given up what the Flyers did for Versteeg. I'd also give up the same for Penner. Flyers didn't overpay. Holmgren trades his first round picks a lot. He knows when a draft is deep, he doesnt think this one is so he moved the picks.

Posted by: ThePat | February 15, 2011 12:10 PM | Report abuse

I hope the Caps can win tonight. Because it could get ugly on these boards. I know they do not play tonight. I was talking about the beer pong tounament tonight. Seriuous the guys should all go out and get totally and completely hammered. No drinking and driving. Play hungover all though on Satuday's game they did look hungover.

Posted by: pkme | February 15, 2011 12:11 PM | Report abuse

Much as this pains me, noslok gets my nomination as Poster of The Year:

I know most of you turned-off the NHL playoffs after round-1 last season. So you didn't bother to watch the Pens/Habs series. If you had, you would have seen Sidney and the gang having the exact same problems solving Montreal's defense and goal-tending as did the Caps. To call the Pens not-playoff-ready would be idiotic...

There was nothing wrong with the Caps last season, or the season before, or the season before that. Nothing except the key players were all in their early 20's....

What? Did you think teams were going to just lay down in awe of all the Caps talent? What? Did you think it was going to be easy just because the regular season looked so easy?

Well, maybe the very young Caps leaders did too. They, and you all, found out that winning The Cup is not ever going to be easy. Fine. That's a lesson that almost every great team in every sport has had to learn the hard way.

Wayne Gretzky's Oilers went through it. You didn't see them go out an invent the center-ice trap and start winning 2-1 games did you? No. The learned, got more experienced, and started kicking-ass.

Not the Caps (or their fans). Nope. Lose to a hot goalie? Time to scrap everything and force that square peg into that round hole.

Well, congratulations. This team may be so mentally screwed-up that it's not fixable without a major overhaul in personnel. It may not be fixable at all.

Revel in the knowledge that each and every one of you fans who jumped on the trendy bandwagon and demanded the team get tougher and defensive had a hand in the destruction of something that could have been truly special.

Sure, the Coaches and GM have a larger hand in this. They should have told everyone where they could stick their idiotic opinions and just had their team's back. Eventually BB and GM will pay for that with their jobs. Not sure when. But it's going to happen.

For now, forget about coach's tirades, team meetings, trade deadline deals, or anything else. This team has lost already. Because they listened to the idiots in the chorus instead of believing in themselves. Not only is it too late for this season, it's too late for this club as it is currently constituted. Players, coaches, GM; everything.

The only larger mistake the organization can make at this point is to desperately try to recapture the magic they had. That's gone. And it's gone for good. Any vain attempt at putting that Genie back in the bottle will only guarantee more seasons like this one.

If you thought last year's Caps weren't playoff ready, wait until you see this season's! But, hey, they are tougher and more defensive. You got what you asked for

Posted by: noslok | February

Posted by: Rhino40 | February 15, 2011 12:12 PM | Report abuse

Anybody ever think that "all of this talent" just isn't really that much talent?

Posted by: CTCapsPhan

nope...they're talented...they just need a coach to shake things up...and a GM to fill in the gaps

Posted by: capscoach | February 15, 2011 12:13 PM | Report abuse

I don't think the caps have much of a shot at the SC this season...BUT!!!

there is a shot...we are strong defensively, and last season we struggled b/c in a 7 game series it was easy for teams to figure us out versus 1 game at a time....this season might be the opposite...we play strong D and MIGHT and I say MIGHT be more likely to be able to figure out another team in 7 games.

Posted by: capscoach | February 15, 2011 12:17 PM | Report abuse

CTCapsPhan: Well considering Ovechkin and Backstrom are having unbelievable $hitty years by their standards and they still sit at 11th and 18th in the league respectively in point production, I believe they are extremely talented. Going back to the PP, that is the difference, and what is killing them this year. If Ovi has just 10 more goals on the PP and Backstrom has 5 more goals on the Powerplay, that probably garners 15-20 more points in the standings, and put Ovi on pace for a 40 goal season. The bar has been set by those two and the team depends on them to win, period. Again, I am as big of a Kool-Aid drinker as anyone but as I told my sons while we watched the Caps lose again last night. Ovi skated his butt off last night, and IMO Backstrom played well too, but the fact is, Ovi makes like 9.7mil, Backstrom and Semin make 6.67 and 6mil (6.6 for Semin under his new contract next year), that is over 22mil, it is time for them to start putting the puck into the damn net. At this point, effort is not enough.

Posted by: fanohock1 | February 15, 2011 12:20 PM | Report abuse

capscoach,

Have you finally gotten on the BB must go train that has been rumbling along since last April??

Posted by: PhilR | February 15, 2011 12:21 PM | Report abuse

@CTCapsPhan

The only 3 really talented players are Ovi, Backstrom and Green. No I dont include Semin bc he is always injured so there is no real way to gauge what he is capable of. So Semin and everyone else had career years last year. This year everyone is underachieving and its ugly. There is a middle ground.

Posted by: ThePat | February 15, 2011 12:22 PM | Report abuse

Fire Boudreau!

Posted by: jmarks09 | February 15, 2011 12:24 PM | Report abuse

Clueless for those of you who call for a new coach. Experts here and everywhere called for more D, more grit, he's done that. PP is the main diff, it and when it clicks season will be a diff story. Remember the Beloved Penguins sat in 12th in the Eastern Conference 2 years ago at this time and won the cup. Yes there was a coaching change, but also some key acquistions at the deadline that turned that team around. The real problem is GM George my teams have won 1 playoff series in 12 years but our talent is great and we will compete for years. You have 4 23 and under future star Centers and 3 Goalies 23 and under who will be in this league for a long time. Package 2 of them and go get a stud 1st rate center George. Show some cahones. Trade Neuvy,Eakin and a 1st for the likes of a RJ UMberger, you wont' win Cups on so called future talent. Those of you who point to Hershey, outside of the goaltending and Carlson/Alzner the core of that team was a bunch of career Minor League stars Giroux,Aucoin,Borquie,Gordon,Fahey etc. Time to make some moves George and Ted or better get used to 13,000 a night, because your going to lose alot of your so called trendy fans.

Posted by: Bricucci1 | February 15, 2011 12:27 PM | Report abuse

@PhilR

I just don't care either way at this point...obviously I am for a new coach next season if we have another 1st round loss...as for now...if they found a really great coach then sure.

Posted by: capscoach | February 15, 2011 12:34 PM | Report abuse

Lets all state the Capitals are done and cooked for the year. I mean a team that plays this badly for 12 weeks has issues. I am predicting they will not make the playoffs. Other teams behind them are starting to play well. Caps will end up 9th. Heck the Hawks who won The Cup is like 12th right now.

Posted by: pkme | February 15, 2011 12:35 PM | Report abuse

@Rhino
Exactly

Posted by: Randolph2 | February 15, 2011 12:37 PM | Report abuse

My predictions for possible players the Caps go after before the trade deadline:

1) Thomas Fleischmann
2) Milan Jurcina
3) Eric Belanger
4) Brendan Morrison
5) Shaone Morrison
6) Jose Theodore
7) Brendan Witt

There are more...but these will provide us with depth, and FINALLY complete our defense. I just hope they arent in such high demand, the price sky rockets and we have to give up all our prospects and picks. They are what we want, we will go after them, and we will get them.

Posted by: SeminAllOverTheIce | February 15, 2011 11:52 AM | Report abuse

Mr Semin: I would argue that missing a guy like Brendan Morrison and Eric Belanger has made a huge diff this year. The 1st 60 games Brendan Morrison was a very solid 2nd line center and very strong option at the Point on the PP. He's been solid in Calgary and his bump to the 2nd line has been part of that team surging. Ask any expert in Hockey and there is probably no bigger character guy in the league than Brendan Morrison. Eric Belanger looked pretty good for the 1st place Coyotes last night? It was letting go of those guys where I would blast GMGM not brining them in, they were cheap contracts. MJ and MP have great futures ahead (MP needs to be moved to wing!) but we aren't going to sniff any cups in the next 2 to 3 years with those 2 anchoring our 2nd and 3rd lines.

Posted by: Bricucci1 | February 15, 2011 12:39 PM | Report abuse

GMGM places everything on talent and nothing on character. Just watch when # 22 and possibly # 21 aren't back next year.

Posted by: Bricucci1 | February 15, 2011 12:41 PM | Report abuse

Awful lot of USELESS fair-weather fans here! Have a little integrity and team loyalty. Otherwise, check the standings and start supporting the team in 1st place. (Oh, and the crack by lylewimbleton about Belanger? That was his agent's Fubar. Do the research.

Posted by: caps4life3 | February 15, 2011 12:44 PM | Report abuse

ThePat: Semin didn't have a career year last year like people outside of capitals circles are saying, or fans that like to trash him. He averaged more goals per game in the 2008-09 season than he did last season. He also scored 38 in the 2006-07 season. It's not like he not he pulled a Jonathan Cheechoo season last year. Scoring 98 goals in 202 games (prior to last year) are not average numbers.

Posted by: fanohock1 | February 15, 2011 12:44 PM | Report abuse

ThePat: Semin didn't have a career year last year like people outside of capitals circles are saying, or fans that like to trash him. He averaged more goals per game in the 2008-09 season than he did last season. He also scored 38 in the 2006-07 season. It's not like he pulled a Jonathan Cheechoo season last year. Scoring 98 goals in 202 games (prior to last year) are not average numbers.

Posted by: fanohock1 | February 15, 2011 12:45 PM | Report abuse

This whole idea that The Caps are embracing some new defense style play is nonesense. The reason BB adjusted is because noone can score goals anymore. Those are the facts. The reason the defense is better is because of Green being more balanced and Carlson and Alzner. The forwards have to be more commited to D because they stink on O.

Posted by: pkme | February 15, 2011 12:46 PM | Report abuse

A shout out to Captain Kirk !

Are you alive out there ?

Did you go to those games at the Booth ?

Still think we're Cup bound ?

Still think Nicky is a "hall of Famer"?

Posted by: Hunterforcoach | February 15, 2011 9:57 AM

yes i'm alive.
i'm 2000 miles from the booth - whatever made you think i went to any games there?
i never said they were cup bound - i give them more than a zero percent chance though.
i don't know what you're smoking - i've never even hinted that i though he was a hall of famer.
my best guess is you have me confused (probably a normal state of mind for you) with someone else.

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | February 15, 2011 12:46 PM | Report abuse

About the powerplay? Well at very least in the Phoenix game the Caps had an advantage of having powerplays...too many games lately they didn't draw any. I won't count the delay of game one by Phoenix as drawing a penalty though...

Those of you who think BB is getting fired haven't put much thought into who will be ready to replace him for the rest of the season...who exactly do you have in mind that can handle this team, is any good and is available...don't say Bob Woods or Dean Evason. If they are the be all and cure all they would already have a high profile job with a contending team...means no ex-Columbus rejects either.

Status quo for the balance.

Posted by: yesisaiditfirst | February 15, 2011 12:47 PM | Report abuse

Part of being talented is finding ways to score when in a slump (albeit a slump of 3 months seems more like a trend). Last night the announcers were talking about it. The talented will find out that to socre goals during a drought, you must end the game wearing ice packs.

Heck, if I had 10 more MPH on my fastball I would have been a major league pitcher. This is not a slump, it is a trend. Trends are usually set based on talent level.

I am a kool aid drinker, but after last night.....

Posted by: CTCapsPhan | February 15, 2011 12:48 PM | Report abuse

@fanohock

I did not mean to say he did. I meant to say so you have Semin and the others who had career years. I honestly have no idea what Semin is capable of doing if he played hard and was healthy all season long. So I am not sure what a career year would be for him. So didnt really want to make him part of the discussion.


That and I said what I did to more just initiate debate and drive some people crazy.

Posted by: ThePat | February 15, 2011 12:53 PM | Report abuse

I have to agree with jmol2112 --

Once again not scoring on the PP in a game you desperately need to win is certainly NOT a "Sign of Life"

The local media coverage of this team has been pathetic. Non-stop babying, excuses, "hot goalies," rambling graphs about "bad luck" -- enough! Most Caps fans are not that stupid and neither are you -- stop pretending this team is gonna suddenly start winning without some changes!

The PP isn't going through a bad phase, ok? It's broken, on many, many levels. BB has lost this team, and he can't get them back. The players have zero condifence in him, and zero confidence in themselves. I don't claim to have the answers, but I DO know that no part of this team is showing any signs of life...

Posted by: pssummers70 | February 15, 2011 12:57 PM | Report abuse

Hey Nicky B - My girlfriend isn't wearing your jersey any more, just thought you should know.

Posted by: norcalcapsfan | February 15, 2011 12:58 PM | Report abuse

@alltheGMGM haters

I have a question for all of you, I've seen many times on here somebody put something the effect of "gee guess who hired BB" as a way of saying GMGM's an idiot for hiring BB.

Did ya think that 1 month after his hire? Were ya thinkin that when we made it to the playoffs 3yrs ago on the last game of the season? Were you saying it at all last yr before the playoffs? When we were breaking scoring titles?

Ok, so if he was good then what happened? The bottom line is BB is a good coach but his tenure here should end everybody knows it. So don't critisize the hire, critisize the fact that he's still here. That's the problem. He took us as far as he can. He's an offensive coach and if you're not gonna play that system then get somebody here that can teach it, breathe it and live it. I'm sorry but if it's a player or 2 struggling that's 1 thing but when you've got an entire TEAM, and an entire PP unit that is below NHL standards then the coach has to go. You want to see an inspired team play hockey, watch the 1st game played under the new coach. It happens every time. This team doesn't lack talent it lacks direction. They have an offensive coach trying to teach them how to play defense. That's like asking Joe Gibbs to run Buddy Ryan's 53 defense. It isn't gonna work and you see the results on the ice.

Posted by: pokerface1208 | February 15, 2011 1:02 PM | Report abuse

@pokerface

Bruce is a good coach. He can coach all styles. GMGM is a good GM, he just doesnt have the balls to make the moves that it takes to get a team over the hump.

The problem is that in sports eventually players beging to tune out the coach regardless of whether he is a great coach or not. It just happens. Whether that is the case right now with BB or not I dont know. But something isnt right. The only people that have a clue as to what is wrong are the guys that are in the lockerroom and around the team all the time. And if they dont know what is wrong, well than thats bascially when you need to do something drastic.

Posted by: ThePat | February 15, 2011 1:07 PM | Report abuse

i hate this. i love the caps, massive fan. however, it seems everytime we lose it's gut wrenching. i've stopped watching for the last two weeks. its so frustrating see guys just plain miss shots, break sticks, high over the net, wide of the net ad nauseum. the other thing i'll bring up is ovi's shooting percentage is DOWN big time. it was averaging about 12% and is now down to about 8%. that's a HUGE dip. so maybe i'm reading too much into it but....something to look at (and consider MP right now has a 16% shooting percentage in 30 games with 37 shots...)

Posted by: blur991 | February 15, 2011 3:04 PM | Report abuse

This blog, and most all other local media following this team, are nothing more than an extension Cap's management, they will be blackballed and no longer allowed into the Cap's inner-circle.

This blog is a prime example of it with all of the softball topics and elementary questions with fan polls to generate necessary "hits" to the site. The coverage matches the team.

Posted by: rblatch45 | February 15, 2011 3:42 PM | Report abuse

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