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Schultz Out 4-6 Weeks (Updated)

Sorry for the late update, but there was no practice today and I just got back to Washington. The highlight of my day so far? I got an exit row seat.

Defenseman Jeff Schultz, who suffered a broken finger early last night while blocking a shot, is out 4-6 weeks, I'm told. He will be going on long-term injured reserve to make space under the salary cap ceiling for a call up from Hershey. The team was leaning toward recalling Sami Lepisto last night (he costs significantly less than Karl Alzner).

Here's the rundown on everyone else:

*Center Boyd Gordon, who also left last night's 4-3 loss in Minnesota in the first period, has back spasms. He is day-to-day.

*John Erskine departed in the second period with an undisclosed ailment. He wouldn't say what was wrong with him, but did tell me last night that it's not serious. He's day-to-day, too.

*Sergei Fedorov remains out with a sprained ankle. He didn't skate at all yesterday, but spent a lot of time at the rink in the morning rehabbing.

*Mike Green (bruised shoulder) continues to improve, I'm told, but he also did not skate at all yesterday. He's officially listed as day-to-day, though he told me in San Jose that he probably won't play until this weekend.

*Alexander Semin (upper back strain) is day-to-day. The team thought he might be able to return last night, so perhaps he'll be able to go tomorrow night against Atlanta.

Updated:Apparently Chris Clark is nursing something, too, according to Caps' writer Mike Vogel. I saw Clark come off the ice during practice in San Jose. And I noticed that he played sparingly in the third period last night. But I thought maybe was just benched as the Caps were attempting to come back. Guess not.

I'll have another update tomorrow morning from KCI.


By Tarik El-Bashir  |  November 25, 2008; 3:29 PM ET
 
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Comments

I wonder if we can retroactivley put Semin on LTIR. Free up more space

Posted by: Leeguru | November 25, 2008 3:45 PM | Report abuse

what are we going to do if erskine and green can't go tomorrow night? That would leave us with 5 defensemen even with lepesto up

Posted by: _stevo | November 25, 2008 3:46 PM | Report abuse

Damn....Is it time for a trade? I think so....

Posted by: redskins2448 | November 25, 2008 3:46 PM | Report abuse

Schultz should just cut it off and keep going.

Posted by: SA-Town | November 25, 2008 3:47 PM | Report abuse

Erskine will play, where do you get that he won't be able to?

Posted by: ThisGuy | November 25, 2008 3:47 PM | Report abuse

Thought it would be lepisto - he left practice early -probably headed for DC. I was looking forward to seeing Alzner for the first time this year - damn!

Posted by: lylewimbledon | November 25, 2008 3:47 PM | Report abuse

Lee, have to hit the 10 game threshold first I think

Posted by: Steve_R | November 25, 2008 3:48 PM | Report abuse

stoopid rules. gotta figure something out. something is gonna break. a trade or something. things cannot stay like this. before you know it, they'll recall Godfrey because he fits under the salary cap.

Posted by: Leeguru | November 25, 2008 3:52 PM | Report abuse

You can't retroactively invoke LTIR because the salary costs are already accounted for (the salary cap is done daily). Now, you can put Semin on LTIR and have his "clock" start retroactively, but you won't get salary relief for previous days.

Posted by: koalatek | November 25, 2008 3:53 PM | Report abuse

yikes....

Posted by: chrislarry | November 25, 2008 3:53 PM | Report abuse

Godfrey does have a cannon of a shot.

Posted by: Steve_R | November 25, 2008 3:53 PM | Report abuse

There is no requirement for the number of games missed before a player can go on LTIR. Beauchemin, for example, was put on LTIR by Anaheim immediately. That said, once they go on LTIR they cannot be removed before they have missed 10 games and 24 calendar days.

If Schultz goes on LTIR the team cannot recall Alzner as Schultz makes just under $800K and they can't get Alzner in under the cap. Lepisto, at $700K, will fit in with Schultz on LTIR. If another player is needed due to other injuries then the team is in a bind. If Semin goes on LTIR then he's out until the Dec. 10 game, and it sounds like he might be close so maybe that won't happen. Fedorov going on LTIR would open it up, but that would leave him out until late December.

Ah, the joys of a salary cap...

Posted by: JBrooke4 | November 25, 2008 3:53 PM | Report abuse

You can't retroactively invoke LTIR because the salary costs are already accounted for (the salary cap is done daily). Now, you can put Semin on LTIR and have his "clock" start retroactively, but you won't get salary relief for previous days.

Posted by: koalatek | November 25, 2008 3:53 PM
--------------------------

Right, and they day the player can be removed is the most important thing in Semin's case and it would allow for a player to be called up in the meantime. But sounds like he won't be going on LTIR, so...

Posted by: JBrooke4 | November 25, 2008 3:56 PM | Report abuse

he just said Semin might be back for Atlanta - why put him anywhere but on the ice!

Posted by: lylewimbledon | November 25, 2008 3:58 PM | Report abuse

@Thisguy

Erskine may not play, he is day to day and you see how long that can mean by looking at federov, poti, morrison, semin, green, anyone else that has been injured on our team this year. Just a hypothetical on what we would do?

Posted by: _stevo | November 25, 2008 3:58 PM | Report abuse

opita

from last post:

Not very good. He's afraid to shoot. All last year he had 58 shots on net. Green has 60 already this year. But that shot that he took last night had everyone talking about it. Maybe it will wake him up to this as an aspect of his play. As much as he's on the bubble - at least as far as the experts on this blog are concerned - SOMETHING would be nice! Maybe give us a reason to want to actually *gasp!* keep him around?

Posted by: Greg S. | November 25, 2008 4:00 PM | Report abuse

"The highlight of my day so far? I got an exit row seat."

Have they put Al Franken dolls next to the Jesse Ventura dolls in the Minn/St. Paul airport yet?

Posted by: Section117 | November 25, 2008 4:01 PM | Report abuse

My son broke a finger, did not tell me, so he could jam that swollen purple sausage of a finger back into a hockey glove the next morning. He is 7. When I pulled the golve off and he winced, only then did I see it and get him to the Dr. It was a clean break and he was splinted. The doctor said no to hockey for about 5 weeks as I recall, but it was mainly because of the curved angle he had to get his finger in for the glove - not really good for a fusing bone.

Posted by: valkova | November 25, 2008 4:04 PM | Report abuse

Sign that kid UP!

Posted by: Greg S. | November 25, 2008 4:06 PM | Report abuse

It's a sad day when Schultz matters.

Call up Pokuluk.
He's cheaper than Lepisto, great set of priorities Caps.

Seems like yesterday the Caps (sorry excuse for a) GM was being called "shrewd".

Let the injury excuse begin, it's always something.

Posted by: Cheef | November 25, 2008 4:10 PM | Report abuse

laich the C...ew. his on ice presecence is great but im sorry he's kinda an ass off the ice. maybe im the only one who sees how cocky and self centered he can be off the ice. if anyone deserves the C after clark its ovie hands down. crucify me for my thoughts but honestly laich does not deserve the C

Posted by: capsfan387 | November 25, 2008 2:41 AM

capsfan387 if you're here...I'm interested to hear you elaborate on this point?

Posted by: ThisGuy | November 25, 2008 4:12 PM | Report abuse

Seems like yesterday the Caps (sorry excuse for a) GM was being called "shrewd".

Let the injury excuse begin, it's always something.

Posted by: Cheef | November 25, 2008 4:10 PM

yes, lets ignore the fact that we have guys that are hurt. lets blame gm for not knowing that schultz has weak fingers or that green's shoulder pads would not protect him from pronger's hit. we should never have signed semin, green, ovie, laich to larger contracts or even signed alzner at all. then we would have had plenty of cap space to call up as many players as we like. its easy to be a gm behind a keyboard...

Posted by: dcsportsfan1 | November 25, 2008 4:17 PM | Report abuse

Cheef, (I hate to say this)

You're right. I don't think GMGM planned this salary cap issue very well. I'm sure he thought we could handle an injury or two, but not this. But I don't think that is an excuse. We should have had more room to play with.

I still hold true to my theory that this year (and maybe next) is a bridge year to the future of the organization. After this year they will start shedding some of these big worthless salaries. I still think the team should have planned it better.

Posted by: Leeguru | November 25, 2008 4:19 PM | Report abuse

I like Laich! Fehr is Fair! Clark for President!

Now that I've gotten that out of the way, Ovechkin deserves the Captaincy, hands down. I don't see Laich as Captain material right now. He leads by example and is as tough as they come, but nobody has proven their desire as much as Ovechkin has.

And his Hockey-English is just fine: you can hear his swears all over the Verizon Center :-).

Posted by: DrinkingPartner | November 25, 2008 4:22 PM | Report abuse

Is it just me or has Schultzie looked TERRIBLE this year? He looks like he's been skating in cement. And opposing forwards are taking liberties because of his soft nature and resistance to muck it up a bit. It's been so bad I wish he would even take a bad penalty and cream cheese a guy just to send a message. As far as I'm concerned, the layoff might do him some good. And it might do all of the Caps some good to give Lepisto a real shot. We all know we need a D-skater who can carry the puck out of our zone! Good luck Sami!

Posted by: dsphvywght | November 25, 2008 4:25 PM | Report abuse

Injuries are a part of the game for ALL teams.

Guru,

Look at your comment regarding salary shedding, correct me if I'm wrong but these salaries are almost (if not all) NEW.

That's how poorly the Caps GM structured things, he OVERPAID wrong players.

Posted by: Cheef | November 25, 2008 4:26 PM | Report abuse

""We all know we need a D-skater who can carry the puck out of our zone! Good luck Sami!""

I disagree, Green handles that just fine, they need to address the loss of Mark Tinordi.
How funny the GM can't address the loss of a guy like Tinordi or even the proper replacement for Kolzig ?

Posted by: Cheef | November 25, 2008 4:30 PM | Report abuse

Lepisto slammed his hand in the luggage compartment on the train ride down to D.C.

He is out 4-6 weeks.

Posted by: SA-Town | November 25, 2008 4:38 PM | Report abuse

I have to agree with Cheef at least in part - the over paying of certain players part. I don't know what he was smoking when he signed Erskine to that much, but it can't be legal.

I will say that GMGM has picked pretty good players overall. Yes, there are dogs in the group as you get with every draft. He's done pretty well in his picks.

His signing strategy is sound in that he's staggered the contract terminations out very nicely. Prospects that should be taking over for older established players seem to dovetail. Look at the goalie situation. Not what we'd like, but BJ is UFA this summer - primed to have Cheezie take over, and then the next year be promoted to the top after JT leaves as UFA.

That gives a lot of options to a GM. At the trading deadline, he can trade those guys for picks and bring someone up a little early, if they're ready.

Posted by: Greg S. | November 25, 2008 4:40 PM | Report abuse

I don't like being overly contentious (then again, what are these boards good for anyway if not a little healthy debate?), but I have to take serious issue with anyone who thinks the entire Caps organization has not been moved significantly toward serious long-term success (now and into the future) by George McPhee's team as well as Ted Leonsis.

Obviously, the missions of GMGM and Teddy have not always been aligned (read: Teddy wanted Jagr), and even in the past couple of years GMGM hasn't always made the perfect move (I remain baffled by $1.5/yr for Erskine), but look at what they HAVE accomplished the year prior to and years since the strike:

Out:
Jagr, Lang, Nylander, Gonchar, Bondra (handled poorly) to name the big ones...

In (via draft, or trades related to the above):
Ovechkin (no-brainer as we won lottery), Green, Backstrom, Laich, Schultz, Flash, Alzner, Varlamov, Neuvirth...the list goes on

And that doesn't count drafting Semin prior to the strike as well as his BRILLIANT deadline moves last year to bring in the trio of Huet, Feds and Cooke that indisputably put us over the top to get us into the playoffs for the first time since Ovie has been here.

And that's just the start of the argument against some of the rather unbelievable and baseless comments that have been made here in the past 72 hours

- MTB

Posted by: MTB7 | November 25, 2008 4:43 PM | Report abuse

Erskine's contract doesn't kick in until next season, so that has no bearing on this years cap problem.

Having said that, there is no explanation aside from bong hits to explain Erskine's contract.

Posted by: Steve_R | November 25, 2008 4:46 PM | Report abuse

Three biggest wastes of space in DC:

1) Etan Thomas
2) John Erskine
3) Jon Jansen

Erskine didn't beat out Etan "I can only swing my elbows wildly on rebounds to look tough AND can't score a lick" Thomas because at least Erskine puts up a fight every once in awhile (albeit not too often anymore).

I absolutely cannot stand watching Erskine play. He is slower than slow, constantly gives up the puck in his own zone which inevitably leads to a score, terrible at bringing the puck out of their zone, and he repeatedly takes penalties at the worst times (usually because he's trying to make up for getting beat).

Why the Caps signed him to a 2-year extension is beyond me. A team can only be as good as its weakest link and Erskine is like paper mache. Yikes!

Posted by: dtc1 | November 25, 2008 4:54 PM | Report abuse

I know that his new contract won't be effective until next season so no effect on this year's cap. Sorry I didn't state that. I didn't mean to confuse the issue.

I think the rebuild has been largely remarkable. Painful, yes. But an interesting window into a successful business operation. The interviews with Ted are illuminating. GMGM's role was played to a Tee. It would make a great business case study.

Posted by: Greg S. | November 25, 2008 4:55 PM | Report abuse

If Semin is back and Lepisto is called up tomorrow, we will be right back in business!

Posted by: DannyBoy1975 | November 25, 2008 4:55 PM | Report abuse

The Post doesn't pay for first class? Jeez. I thought this was the paper of record.

Actually, I could totally see Laich as the next C. OV is great and all, but I'm not even sure he wants it. Chris is pretty fearless and plays with a lot of passion. That's worth something. Ditto Laich, plus Laich seems to be bit more outgoing than Clark personally (see last year's "Ladies Man" nonsense), so he would be good for publicity, etc.

But, whatever, the dynamics of the room and the team may dictate someone else.

Posted by: oldtimehockey | November 25, 2008 4:56 PM | Report abuse

MTB,

Caps GM has benefited greatly from running a LOSING team, that's where the debate ends.

Anyone, I really mean anyone, like the homeless guy outside VC could have drafted these guys, if they had the most # 1 picks in the NHL for the last 7-8 years, won the lottery.

To allow for the same GM while attempting to compete will amount to sports suicide.

Posted by: Cheef | November 25, 2008 4:57 PM | Report abuse

this is the downside of going to the cap. its easy to say guys like clark are overpaid based upon recent performance/health. but remember what he was doing when he was signed to the deal. its a crap shoot sometimes and gmgm is no better or worse at predicting such things than any other gm.

as for erskine, my thought is that they realize they are going to have to pay up for a top FA dman next year in addition to maybe signing morrison long term. alzner takes jurcina's spot, maybe sloan or lepisto is in there as well. they are going to need someone realtively cheap to fit mo/FA into the fold. maybe you could have found someone better on the open market for less, but i think they hedged their bets with someone they know to have some cost certainty. i'm not as down on erskine as others, but we all see what we want to see. they certainly do need some toughness back there.

Posted by: dcsportsfan1 | November 25, 2008 4:58 PM | Report abuse

""It would make a great business case study.""

I think it's laughable to condider Ted & GM anything other than pure losers.

The lies & spin have been marvelous, watching sheep eat it up ? Priceless.

Thanks in large part to losing, Ted & GM have been allowed to exsist, in a "dummy proof" environment.

Posted by: Cheef | November 25, 2008 5:03 PM | Report abuse

BTW, cheef, GM ran a winning team when he first got here. couple division titles, etc. problem was they couldn't do anything in the playoffs and had a certain overpaid loser that (apparently) was the prize of the owner, not GMGM. after that, the team was a loser, on purpose. a fact you really dont want to accept, but reality none the less. yes, anyone could have drafted semin, including the 10 other teams who passed him up.

Posted by: dcsportsfan1 | November 25, 2008 5:05 PM | Report abuse

Erskine was given a gift and he has not responded.
He's a bum, no hits, no fights, no points.

A BUM.

Posted by: Cheef | November 25, 2008 5:05 PM | Report abuse

He rode Poile's team when he arrived.

Crying owner for Jagr is a joke. Notice how he played after he left ? Still delivered and I don't even like him, but that IS the truth, GM mishandled him from day #1.

Butch Cassidy ? You really want to argue ?

"the team was a loser, on purpose"

Well, that's where I'll leave this debate, anyone that allows for being a loser is not fit to be in this league, leave that approach to the bush leagues, then again we are talking about Ted.

Posted by: Cheef | November 25, 2008 5:10 PM | Report abuse

For one time, I'm going to agree with Cheef -- on Erskine. He is a bum. It's too bad that his injury is not that serious, so we may actually see his sorry @ss again on Wednesday.

Posted by: DannyBoy1975 | November 25, 2008 5:13 PM | Report abuse

Cheef, I can't tell whether you're trolling, crazy, or just determined to hate whoever's making the decisions in the Capitals front office.

But in any case, for the sake of argument, it's not entirely fair to say the team's success right now comes just from the team's poor performance over the last ten years. Backstrom and Ovechkin are the only players who were acquired via top ten picks. Semin was a mid first rounder, Green and Schultz were late first rounders. Obviously Kozlov, Poti, and Nylander were free agent signings. Laich and Fleischmann were trades. Johnson and Steckel were waiver wire pickups. Don't get me wrong, having those top picks has helped a lot and when Alzner gets to DC I am sure they'll continue to help but to say that they're the only way McPhee has brought in contributing players is by having high draft picks is incorrect.

As for this "McPhee couldn't even find a replacement for Kolzig" assessment: he brought in Huet for relatively cheap last year and he signed the best free agent goaltender in the offseason. Plus there are a couple good goaltending prospects in the system and a couple decent ones. What other feasible moves would you have had him make?

Posted by: capsbluelinedotcom | November 25, 2008 5:16 PM | Report abuse

OK. No more posts or updates from Tarik. All he gives us is bad news of more injuries. So if he stops reporting, there won't be any more injuries.

Posted by: Greg S. | November 25, 2008 5:16 PM | Report abuse

Hopefully Leposito plays so well GMGM will throw in Jucie or Erskine in the/a Nylander trade...

Posted by: ThatGuy2 | November 25, 2008 5:27 PM | Report abuse

The post @ 5:05 said "losing on purpose", not me.

Just call up Pokuluk, all will be well.

Posted by: Cheef | November 25, 2008 5:28 PM | Report abuse

@ dcsportsfan1:

Good take on Erskine. That makes a semblance of sense though I still think in our case we'd have been better off with a puck-mover in our system (i.e. Alzner, Lepisto, Sloan...) as even Erskine really isn't ALL THAT physical and he's a massive liability re: breakout.

What about this as an alternative though it's a bit more outrageous:

GMGM may be thinking we're nearing the end of Brashear's tenure here (i.e. retirement) and he signed Erskine for the dual purpose of having a somewhat physical D-Man whose skill-level we understand (and have seen perhaps SOME improvement) but also for a potential new 4th line fighter?...he's no Brash but I know he can be a tough b*st*rd

Posted by: MTB7 | November 25, 2008 5:29 PM | Report abuse

ps - thank you capsbluelinedotcom for explaing to negative nancy, err i mean cheef, moves that he cant grasp. He makes blanket statements like "GMGM overpays players" but doesnt back any of them up with particulars. I guess some people are just wired to be mad no matter what happens. When we were winning he wasnt happy either.

Posted by: ThatGuy2 | November 25, 2008 5:34 PM | Report abuse

Wow, I didn't catch it on the news. How could they not report that the sky is falling?

We're WAY better off than we were at the same time last year.

Posted by: WCAPS1 | November 25, 2008 5:37 PM | Report abuse

Blanket statements ?

How about Nylander & Feds being overpaid.
Toss in a No Trade Clause and you not only overpaid, you are now hostage.

Erskine ? Jozy ? Clark ? and even Green at this stage IMO are overpaid, not sure what Kozlov is making but It's probably not worth the money.

Posted by: Cheef | November 25, 2008 5:38 PM | Report abuse

I will add that the loss if Greenie is very obvious when you see the lack of ability for Erskine, Poti and Schultz to put the puck on net with any force. Sami will do better than any of them.

Posted by: WCAPS1 | November 25, 2008 5:39 PM | Report abuse

Better off than 1 year ago ? That's about as safe a comment that can be made.

Same GM that hired Bruce "keanu" Cassidy and the Hugs, only to have stumbled upon BB.

It's already in play, the ruining of BB.
Make no mistake, GM will screw up everything, he always does.

Posted by: Cheef | November 25, 2008 5:41 PM | Report abuse

We're already at the point of the season where people are agreeing with cheef? ( ha, auto text tried to replace with "cheer")

Posted by: oo7 | November 25, 2008 5:41 PM | Report abuse

Anybody who roots for a more severe injury to a player on a team they claim to support is an idiot.

Posted by: Section117 | November 25, 2008 5:44 PM | Report abuse

Anybody who roots for a more severe injury to a player on a team they claim to support is an idiot.

Couldn't say it better myself.

Posted by: Yoshietree | November 25, 2008 6:09 PM | Report abuse

Boo,
Working on it, working on it. Glad you liked the compliment. :)

ThisGuy,
Thanks for bumping the capsfan387 quote up.

capsfan387,
They say you should ever meet your heroes. Personally I could care less if Liach is cocky and self-centred off the ice. If he blocks three shots in a row on the PK without a stick, or blocks a shot, getting a knock in the process but still makes the clear on his way to the bench, he can pretty much do what the hell he likes off the ice in my book.

SA-Town,
Don't even joke about that!

Section117,
Exactly right about idiots wishing more severe injuries. Two guesses who it was.

Cheef,
Are you Mrs GMGM?

Posted by: DaveUKCapsFan | November 25, 2008 6:11 PM | Report abuse

Cheef to answer your particulars;

Nylander - when we signed him, he was immediately our #1 C and had a point per game avg. Plus, no FA wanted to come here (when we signed him) so we had to make a big move on someone. This year not only is he giving us depth (where has Feds been the past few games?) he also provides us a hell of a trade chip as the season goes on. Plenty of other teams want him (apparently at least 6 made offers when they caught wind he was on the block)

Feds - it's an f'ing 1 yr. deal. He wanted to retire and we wanted to sign him for the Russian connection, the mentorship role, and playoff experience. Plus, apparently he's flexible and is a fairly solid Dman. There is no way one of the greatest Russian's to ever play hockey in the NHL was going to sign for the levels you prefer. Again, see 1 year deal (which ironically gives the caps at least that much cap space next year)

Erskine - the only one i would agree with you on although he has outplayed Juice.

Jozy - he was the best and only G available on the market. We paid him market rate AND only for 3 years (when the prospects will be ready). I would hate to hear what you would say if we didnt sign anyone. Plus, its only a month in the season, he has plenty of time to catch fire - which you can see a bit of if you actually watched any of the past few games.

Clark - wasnt this guy a 30 goal scorer when the rest of the roster was trying to break 10 goals. If i remember correctly too, him and Ovie had pretty sweet chemistry before his hamstring. Would I love to trade him today - sure - but when we signed him he was well worth it. He aint bad to have on the 3rd or 4th line if he gets going again.

Green - "at this stage IMO overpaid." I want to smoke what you're smoking. Isnt he only making around $5 mil.? I'm not even going to touch this any further

Seriously, im guessing you think this is a fantasy team where you can sign people one year for whatever and then readjust the roster and the salaries the next year. When you sign someone, thats the risk you take. What if Ovie becomes a 30 goal scorer in 5 years from now, are you going to say we should never have signed him too? Take a deep breath man, we're only a month into the season and still in first place. Luckily we have trade chips and are overflowing with prospects. We're fine.

Posted by: ThatGuy2 | November 25, 2008 6:23 PM | Report abuse

I have a request to those "Caps fans(?)" who have chosen to simply categorically blast the organization and its players.

Please provide us with your rational, thought-out roadmap for the organization if you were to take the helm from GMGM tomorrow. I want to know who you're unloading, who you're keeping, what you're signing them for, who you're targeting via free-agency or a trade, and what lines and D-pairings you'd like to see.

Then perhaps we can all have a better discussion regarding the merits of your organizational thinking.

- MTB

Posted by: MTB7 | November 25, 2008 6:32 PM | Report abuse

ThatGuy2,

I think Jose is a 2 year deal not 3. It was Huet who wanted 3 years IIRC.

Posted by: DaveUKCapsFan | November 25, 2008 6:46 PM | Report abuse

Keep rockin the red.

That post is a wonderful justification.

Keep living in denial.
Supporting the guy that screwed up is hillarious.
Talk about a Gov job, the Caps are classic employers of losers, see GM.

Posted by: Cheef | November 25, 2008 6:55 PM | Report abuse

Clark must sit! He is taking minutes from Eric Fehr who right now is a better player and deserves the minutes over Clark. Clark should also have the captaincy taken from him. He's Hanlon's captain and the time has come to make the switch. AO should be the next captain. He is by far and away the heart and soul of this franchise and deserves to wear the "C" every night.

And one more thing please bring up Lepisto so we can once and for all put an end to this guy being touted as an NHL defenseman. AHL yes, NHL no. I'd rather have Brooksy back there.

Posted by: meagle | November 25, 2008 7:05 PM | Report abuse

Always easy to be a pessimist...there are 29 losing teams every year. If Cheep would predict some future thing or take any risk I'd be impressed. predicting failures after the fact is not exactly a rare skill. BTW, I predict the police action in Viet Nam will go poorly for the Americans. I'll bet yesterday's lunch on it.

Posted by: TheCapitalist1 | November 25, 2008 7:33 PM | Report abuse

Well, It did not take a rocket scientist to predict Jagr would end up a flop.

How about predicting Cassidy would be a bust ? Hanlon, hockey's Norv Turner.
The player list is way too long.

Given the pathetic D, Pokuluk seems fitting.
How's that for predictions ?

Remaining ignorant is your problem.

Oh wait, there's Friesen, Clark, Pothier, and countless cups of coffee that I don't know where to start

Posted by: Cheef | November 25, 2008 7:57 PM | Report abuse

Tarik chat at 11 a.m. tomorrow! Woo hoo!

Posted by: leetee1955 | November 25, 2008 8:12 PM | Report abuse

Anyone know what my options are for watching tomorrow's game on-line since I will be out of town?

Posted by: rebecca17 | November 25, 2008 8:13 PM | Report abuse

MTB wrote:
Please provide us with your rational, thought-out roadmap for the organization if you were to take the helm from GMGM tomorrow. I want to know who you're unloading, who you're keeping, what you're signing them for
Cheep wrote about Pokulok.
I love this bar.

Posted by: redlineblue | November 25, 2008 8:35 PM | Report abuse

It is also worth remembering that GMGM did not plan on Mo picking up an extra $1M in salary arbitration nor did GMGM know that Feds would fall into our lap, be such a big part of the team and eat up another $4M. That's $5M in relatively unexpected salary to absorb this year. GMGM is thinking 2,3,5 years down the road and has done a wonderful job; issues like Mo and Feds will occasionally come up. Would we rather have the cap space or Feds? I say Feds. The $1M for Mo? They lost in arbitration- it happens.

As for Erskine, nobody seems to understand but that decision must have been made in conjunction with BB. BB sees something in him and that is good enough for me. Maybe his salary is a fair deal for a guy who can alternate between wing and D and will give the Caps more roster flexibility next year. Maybe he is a great guy in the locker room. Who knows.

All I know is I remember the 103-105 point seasons that ended in the first round of the playoffs. I'll take this coach, this GM and this owner over those guys any day.


Posted by: ChrisAm | November 25, 2008 8:47 PM | Report abuse

Rebecca,

we usually post a few links right before the game.

Some people are overreacting, both ways:

1) We're still a strong team. Stop acting like it's the end of the season.

2) The team has trouble... some people here are a bit blind to constructive comments, or label them as naysayers, or take them personal.

We're all Caps fans... we all love the team :). I think it's clear to everybody that our D needs some working on. Weather it's reinforcement or changing a bit the system, we'll see.

Posted by: mauree | November 25, 2008 9:46 PM | Report abuse

This "undisclosed injury" crap had got to stop. This is not some top secret CIA operation.

Posted by: MKadyman | November 25, 2008 9:50 PM | Report abuse

The Erskine contract is fair, given he would have been a UFA after this season. Criminy, the avg NHL salary must be north of $2M (most teams with 23 players are near the $56M cap), so he is roughly "half paid." Think of it as 23 players making 456M = $2.5M/player. Every player then is a percentage of that. They got Flash at "30% cap avg" because he had little leverage (RFA). A player gets UFA and you need to pay a little more. Not only is this fair and necessary, but it shows the other RFAs (Fehr, Gordo, Flash) that they will get a decent payday when it's time. I might be in the minority, but I think Erskine has been fair value for $500K. What did you all expect? Really, advancing $1.25M/year for two years is not much cap risk.

Posted by: tominfl1 | November 25, 2008 9:52 PM | Report abuse

I'm a little late in reading the posts, but omg, i laughed out loud when i read this:

Schultz should just cut it off and keep going.

Posted by: SA-Town | November 25, 2008 3:47 PM

Very funny, SA-Town! Thanks for the laugh :)

Posted by: BlondeCapsFan | November 25, 2008 9:53 PM | Report abuse

Its funny as heck reading some of these posts.

Pretty obvious that some of these posters are just trying to get a rise out of the rest.

Posted by: lightshow | November 25, 2008 9:58 PM | Report abuse

erskine deal was crap.... hes not good.... yeah as much as i hope brash stays im not to sure about it... but guys we had/still might have the best minor league system... so many prospects will be on the team in the next couple of years... and also i hope we trade nyles for barker... this guys is really good and young and then throw in erskine or jurcina....jurcina has room for upside but not erskine..... we got great talent in the minors: perrault, bouchard, osala, alzner, finley, godfrey, varlamov, neuvirth, beagle, lepisto, bourqe, carlson, machesny, gustafson etc. other guys too.

Posted by: Watdaflip93 | November 25, 2008 10:13 PM | Report abuse

Time to be thinking about some goal tending help too....

Posted by: festus75 | November 25, 2008 10:19 PM | Report abuse

Just returned from Clarkie's Q&A Session at ESPN... and yes, his right wrist was wrapped. Didn't notice it until he was taking his jersey off to leave thou. When asked, he said it's nothing. He's as tough as they come. And everyone saying negative things about Clark... He IS our captain. It's obvious the guys really look up to him. Remember he's coming off an injury... Give him time to recover folks. He'll be the old Clarkie again in no time.

Posted by: Tracy2117 | November 25, 2008 10:21 PM | Report abuse

I don't know if this posted already but Alzner was interviewed a few days back by the Vancouver Sun and check out the very end of the interview:

"They said that I'll play in Washington some time this year," recalls Alzner. "They don't know if it'll be five games or 65 games, but they said I'll get a chance to play. I've got to wait patiently -- I know they're trying to make trades right now -- and we'll see how it all goes down."

Interesting...trades? to make space for Alzner?

Posted by: Andoy | November 25, 2008 10:30 PM | Report abuse

@cheef

You are on a roll today with all your cheery posts. I conclude all of the following happen to you today - you woke up today with crumbs in your bed sheets, you develop a case of hemorrhoids, the car wouldn't start this morning, the dog crapped on the carpet, the water heater broke, your wife walked out on you and you receive a letter from the IRS wanting to do an audit on you.

Oh by the way, did I leave anything out????

;-)

Posted by: puckman | November 25, 2008 10:33 PM | Report abuse

This "undisclosed injury" crap had got to stop. This is not some top secret CIA operation.

Posted by: MKadyman | November 25, 2008 9:50 PM


I feel the same way sometimes but the truth is that some injuries are exploitable. For example, a shoulder injury could mean a player is weaker on faceoffs and an ankle sprain could mean a player isn't able to turn to one side as well as he usually is, etc. Thus, bringing these guys back at 90% means they'd still be exploitable and it could put the Capitals at a disadvantage.

Posted by: capsbluelinedotcom | November 25, 2008 10:48 PM | Report abuse

with green out, we have zero speed on d. i mean zero. we have too many big, slow, young guys on our blue line and no cap room to help the cause.

nylander is -5 with 4 points for the month of november. that's not too helpful given the almost 5 mil cap hit.

trade nylander with either mo or erskine to the canucks for either ohlund or mitchell. that will save us around 4 mil in cap space and give us some veteran d help. then bring up alzner and lepisto. they are ready.

Posted by: koshari | November 25, 2008 11:33 PM | Report abuse

You left out a few things:

Lost my job (again) Telecom sales suck.
Wife walked out, went on a road trip and left me with the kids.
Girl on my adult team has more points & pims than I do.

Oh, and my loser dog bit off my nose.
How's that ?

Posted by: Cheef | November 25, 2008 11:56 PM | Report abuse

GMGM is the only one to blame for the mess.
He let the salary go too high so then had to carry one less than the limit and it backfired. We will lose points due to his mismanagement and inability to get rid of overpriced players so the youngsters can be brought up. He doenst understand the cap and it will get worse as the young guns come due for new contracts.GET USED TO IT CAP FANS

Posted by: wendel2 | November 26, 2008 12:34 AM | Report abuse

Sound like Cheef had a day straight out of a Country song. Although I think the worst thing that can happen to him is the Caps winning.

Off topic (like I've ever ON topic!) but watching the highlights from the Wild game I noticed a young chap sat at the glass behind the Caps bench. He was "rocking the red" and was clearly seen behind BB after the first 2 Wild goals. Does anyone know who he was? Relative of BB? Tarik - can you help?

Boo,
I think you created a monster with the fighting thing. 2 for instigating for me!

Posted by: DaveUKCapsFan | November 26, 2008 4:37 AM | Report abuse

Dave:
Funny you say that ... I was thinkin' the exact same thing!! ;-) (And you're getting at least 5 if not 10.) BTW, don't you have something better to do than to be starting all of these fights?!? :-D

Posted by: Boo- | November 26, 2008 5:26 AM | Report abuse

What in the wide wide world of sports are you doing up at 5:26am? Just coming home?

Work keeps getting in the way of progress, crime can't crack itself.

Posted by: DaveUKCapsFan | November 26, 2008 5:40 AM | Report abuse

Yeah Boo...

What are you doing up at 5:26am?

Posted by: JSchon | November 26, 2008 5:44 AM | Report abuse

JSchon,
You can talk. During your rants the other day (which I greatly enjoyed) you must have had about 4 hours sleep. Have you calmed down yet?

Posted by: DaveUKCapsFan | November 26, 2008 6:13 AM | Report abuse

ok, bringing up Sami because he cost less is a joke. Cap fans are filling Verizon center and now we are going to penny=pinch? Alzner is the answer. We need more defense not another Bobby Orr wanna-be. we can't afford more risk at the blueline. Clarke is a bust and needs to be traded, also get rid off that no good Jurcina. Did you see that lame attempt at a shot block the other night. He ducked,flinched and cringed and a wrister from 5 feet in front of him. And his stupid penatlies are costing us. We can do nothing about injuries except to teach that knucklehead Green that you don't go toe to toe with Chris Pronger in the corner, thats the forwards job. But we have found out on this road trip who comes to play and who is along for the ride. Erskins has been solid on defense. That's what he is paid to do. Not score. Morrison can be traded also. But if Mcphee thinks the answer is Sami Lepisto for 3-4 weeks, instead of playing Borque and Alzner, then the Caps are gonna get what they deserve and that is a first round knockout. No time for bean counting, make the right move.

Posted by: ergoroc | November 26, 2008 6:26 AM | Report abuse

@Dave

I'm glad you enjoyed them, as I am an entertainer as well as a Caps fan. Unfortunately, being up at 5:30 probably means I might have a few issues, if thats not enough, then this certainly is...

This is the ratio of points to time on ice, basically, the higher the number the better, its how productive you are per minute played. Notice who is 4 by a significant margin.

Alex Semin 0.087662338
Alex Ovechkin 0.056593096
Nick Backstrom 0.051011299
Eric Fehr 0.048402711
MichaelNylander 0.040540541
Sergei Fedorov 0.037625418
Mike Green 0.03520352
Tomas Flash 0.034348165
Victor Kozlov 0.033333333
Brooks Laich 0.032485111
Boyd Gordon 0.027777778
Dave Steckel 0.023809524
Matt Bradley 0.017718715
Jeff Schultz 0.016805109
Tom Poti 0.016793551
Chris Clark 0.012244898

Fehr, barely get PP time, less than 6 minutes for the entire season and rarely plays with a top line center or wing and still is almost as productive as Backstrom and more productive than Nylander who see a ton of PP time.

Posted by: JSchon | November 26, 2008 6:37 AM | Report abuse

JSchon,
What? Figures to only 9 decimal places? How are we supposed to come to conclusions based on such partial data.

Posted by: DaveUKCapsFan | November 26, 2008 6:44 AM | Report abuse

Boo was up at 4am the other day... what are you up to woman??? :p

Nice analysis JSchon, those numbers confirm that Fehr should play more. I like the guy, he gives all... didn't score much yet but it's a matter of time.

Man I hope Clarkie comes back to the old self... what do you think it's the reason of his poor performance? We're quite a few games into the season now, I don't think the "just back from injury" excuse holds anymore. Maybe age?

Posted by: mauree | November 26, 2008 6:44 AM | Report abuse

Had to hit the gym, boys ... Boo's work is never done! (Wait, that's a fine, isn't it?!? Dagnabit!!)

Dave:
If you're too busy fighting crime to do what you SHOULD be doing, then I know of a case you can crack!

JSchon:
Rumor has it that you never sleep and that you live in a hyperbaric chamber - is that true?

Any word on who's being called up? I was not planning on going tonight (have a lot to do to get ready for tomorrow - did I mention that my work is never done?), but I couldn't resist. Lookin' for a big win and a little something extra to be thankful for tomorrow!!

LET'S GO CAPS!!

Posted by: Boo- | November 26, 2008 6:46 AM | Report abuse

I love this stuff...

I hope the lines look like this real soon...

OV/Backstrom/Fehr
Flash/Fedorov/Semin
Bourque/Steckel/Laich
Brashear/Gordon/Bradley/Clark

Green/Morrison
Poti/Alzner
Schultz/Lepisto

Trade Nylander and Kozlov... Get 1 player in return, a 3,4,5 defender type.

Posted by: JSchon | November 26, 2008 6:47 AM | Report abuse

mauree:
I was up until 4am?!? Really?!? I know I have had more than my fair share of 3am nights, but don't remember 4am (but then again, sleep deprivation = memory loss). Anyway, if that was the case then I was "up" until then, I did not "get up" at that time (days like today to alarm was set for 5:00 - I don't do any earlier than that, thank you).

Posted by: Boo- | November 26, 2008 6:50 AM | Report abuse

@Boo!

I bought Gilbert Arenas's old Hyperbolic Chamber off of craigslist as he upgraded his to one with a pool inside of it. It was a bargain, all I had to do was pick it up.

Posted by: JSchon | November 26, 2008 6:55 AM | Report abuse

@Boo!

I bought Gilbert Arenas's old Hyperbolic Chamber off of craigslist as he upgraded his to one with a pool inside of it. It was a bargain, all I had to do was pick it up.

Posted by: JSchon | November 26, 2008 6:57 AM | Report abuse

@Dave

That was actually pretty damn funny... I would say that it had nothing to do with me and excel was the culprit, but no one would believe me.

Posted by: JSchon | November 26, 2008 7:02 AM | Report abuse

JSchon:
LOL!! Well seeing as it did not seem to work from him and the boys, I'm glad that you got a good deal on it!! ;-) Just read your entire analysis - very compelling. I take it that you based it on +/- and not direct goals/assists? Regardless, a good case for your boy Fehr (and Nyls, even if he gets more PP time, don't ya think?). BTW, what exactly did you mean by "Notice who is 4"?

Posted by: Boo- | November 26, 2008 7:04 AM | Report abuse

@Boo

It solely based on points, not +/-. Production/TOI = X.

Fehr is my boy.

I wanted to point out what most people do not realize, that Fehr makes things happen when he is on the ice, the reason people don't notice is becauee he isnt on the ice as much as the other players.

For example.

BMW salesman A, works 60 hours a week and sells 20 cars. BMW salesperson B, works 20 hours a week and sells 18 cars. Who is more productive?

The answer is Eric Fehr.

Posted by: JSchon | November 26, 2008 7:12 AM | Report abuse

@JSchon

Wrong, the answer is Lee :D Except he's too busy drinking beer, watching games and posting frivolous stuff on the blogs... :D

Posted by: mauree | November 26, 2008 7:20 AM | Report abuse

JSchon:
I got your point about Fehr, but if that is based on points, then how is that fair to Dmen (or did you just include them thinking how they rank relative to each other?). I take it that Mo and Sexy Lumberhack must have goose eggs (or close to it)? Oh and you didn't answer my question - what exactly did you mean by "Notice who is 4"? All that aside, poor Clarkie!! :-/

Posted by: Boo- | November 26, 2008 7:22 AM | Report abuse

mauree:
Lee's the finance dude, so he is as productive as the sales guys are COMBINED!! He's an overachiever ...

Posted by: Boo- | November 26, 2008 7:24 AM | Report abuse

Ohhh...

No, I wasn't making a point to notice Erskine, who isnt on the list, but #4 on the list Fehr.

Posted by: JSchon | November 26, 2008 7:27 AM | Report abuse

I think he meant that Fehr is high in the list, at the #4 spot.

It's hard to do something similar for D-men... +-/minutes doesn't work as well. If the + or - points were separate then it'd make sense, i.e. sum all positive and negatives in different columns instead of adding them together.

Posted by: mauree | November 26, 2008 7:27 AM | Report abuse

I doesnt really apply to defensemen because defensemen have different roles within the team.

But you can certainly compare scoring lines.

Posted by: JSchon | November 26, 2008 7:31 AM | Report abuse

Got it. I know comparing points for O and D men is an apples and oranges thing - just wanted to make sure I understood the entire point since some D was included. I'm with ya now!! :-)

Posted by: Boo- | November 26, 2008 7:38 AM | Report abuse

Here is the same list of points per minute, but divided by salary, so it says who is most productive as a percent of pay:

Fehr .0677
Flash .0467
Steckel .0465
Gordo .0388
Schultz .0224
Backstrom .02125
Semin .0191
Bradley .0177
Laich .0155
Kozzie .0133
Feds .0094
Nylander .0083
Green .0068
OV .0060
Poti .0048
Clark .0046

Some would say you can't win with a team just of Fehrs and Flashes; I would say in today's cap era you can't win without them.

Posted by: tominfl1 | November 26, 2008 7:42 AM | Report abuse

Some people have far to much time on their hands.

Plus, no wonder Fehr isn't getting much ice time if he is working 20 hours a week at a BMW dealership.

Posted by: DaveUKCapsFan | November 26, 2008 7:42 AM | Report abuse

@Dave

HA!

He needs something to do since he doesnt play but every other game. Whats a guy to do?

Posted by: JSchon | November 26, 2008 7:45 AM | Report abuse

lol Dave.

Dividing by salary it's nice but a bit biased by the market, years played, etc.
But I agree with your conclusion tominfl1 :)

Posted by: mauree | November 26, 2008 7:47 AM | Report abuse

I hope BMW doesnt make him work 40 this week since he was on a long road trip last week. Leeguru, if you have any pull within BMW, make sure Fehr suits up tonight.

Posted by: JSchon | November 26, 2008 7:48 AM | Report abuse

I heard BMW was calling up some rookies ...

Posted by: Boo- | November 26, 2008 7:58 AM | Report abuse

BMWBuzz has a rumour that Lee is being traded? Any truth?

Posted by: DaveUKCapsFan | November 26, 2008 8:01 AM | Report abuse

Fehr could easily be this year's "Brooks Laich" and end up the season with a 3 yr/$6M extension if he can get 40+ points and turn it up for the playoffs. It would be great if someone could become the "Mike Green" of this year, to come out of relative obscurity and rise to potential all-star status. Best candidate for that is Flash, but it's highly doubtful since Green went so far so fast.

Posted by: tominfl1 | November 26, 2008 8:02 AM | Report abuse

Lee to Rookies: "all right folks, your first assignment is to research the players points, TOI and +- of all the NHL teams, divided by divisions, conference, etc"

Rookie1: "we sells cars..."

Lee to Rookies: "Rookie1 was just fired... anybody else? All righty, let's get to work!"

Posted by: mauree | November 26, 2008 8:03 AM | Report abuse

to tell you guys the truth if I had a choice of picking the dmen i could keep on the team it would be green poti maybe schultz.... seriously... get rid of mo jurcina and erskine.... we got to make room for prospects..... and once we trade nyles hopefully for barker well have an open space at forward for bourqe and others next year

Posted by: Watdaflip93 | November 26, 2008 8:17 AM | Report abuse

to tell you guys the truth if I had a choice of picking the dmen i could keep on the team it would be green poti maybe schultz.... seriously... get rid of mo jurcina and erskine.... we got to make room for prospects..... and once we trade nyles hopefully for barker well have an open space at forward for bourqe and others next year

Posted by: Watdaflip93 | November 26, 2008 8:19 AM | Report abuse

and sloan

Posted by: Watdaflip93 | November 26, 2008 8:32 AM | Report abuse

These guys can't seem to catch a break. I don't like undervaluing other teams, since that seems to bite us, but I think Atlanta could be a good game to rebuild whatever confidence got left out west.
I think Sami would be a good call up. He gave me the feeling on Saturday that he's like Greener-a few mistakes, but overall, better with him than without. Getting Semin back would be big, but only if its not going to reinjure him.
Wondering what the crowd is going to be like tonight, with the holiday tomorrow. Be nice to get lower level seats, but I'll take what I can get. I'm off to pack. "See" everyone at the game!

Posted by: jmu_capsgirl | November 26, 2008 8:36 AM | Report abuse

Ergoroc,
The salary cap makes for bean counters and penny pinching. Perhaps Alzner is ready to be that next call up, but the cap reality makes it impossible. The seasoning that Alzner is getting will greatly benefit the Caps at the end of the season or next season when he is ready for more quality minutes with the Caps. Patience. We'll see who is back on the ice for tonight. We catch the Trashers on the back end of a back to back. Go Caps!

Posted by: _Mark | November 26, 2008 8:39 AM | Report abuse

Poor Leeguru ... the subject of trade fodder and he does not even know it. And here I thought he had a no trade clause?!? I never realized how much he and Nyls had in common.

Posted by: Boo- | November 26, 2008 8:48 AM | Report abuse

Lee is Swedish?

I suppose that would explain his subscriptions to those late night channels.

Posted by: DaveUKCapsFan | November 26, 2008 8:56 AM | Report abuse

They played Hedberg last night, so we'll probably be up against Pavelec, who is supposed to be pretty good. I wonder who starts for us..

Posted by: _jordan | November 26, 2008 8:57 AM | Report abuse

Rumors are coming in like wildfire, the likely spots for Leeguru are Baltimore/Camden Acura, Ted Parker Broward Nissan and Walla Walla Dodge/Jeep. There is an outside chance of Greater Manitoba Range Rover, but they are looking for a North American style of financing.

Posted by: JSchon | November 26, 2008 8:58 AM | Report abuse

Actually I think he is German ... but that's basically the same thing. ;-)

Posted by: Boo- | November 26, 2008 9:00 AM | Report abuse

HA HA!!! :-D Boy I can't wait until Lee logs on ...

Posted by: Boo- | November 26, 2008 9:03 AM | Report abuse

Maybe there should be a new fine for not mentioning Lee in your post?

Posted by: _Mark | November 26, 2008 9:08 AM | Report abuse

Ted Parker Broward Nissan have just signed a slick talking, lefty from Cambridge Lexus. "Well his average basis points were significantly higher than the other options we were looking at", said Ted Parker Jr.

With Nissan out of the picture, Baltimore/Camden Acura remain the front runner for the services of Leeguru, the question is what would they be willing to send to BMW of Fairfax. "We have a few employees that are off limits, the really hot part time receptionist certainly has a future with us, off the top of my head thats all I can think of. There is a list somewhere", said a Baltimore Camden Acura representative. More to come from this on going situation.

Posted by: JSchon | November 26, 2008 9:15 AM | Report abuse

If we send him to Nuremburg Chevy, we can get Freddie Cassivi back from the Ice Tigers.

Posted by: uncatim | November 26, 2008 9:20 AM | Report abuse

Sorry, Leeguru. I'm just bitter because my dealership ist kaput.

Posted by: uncatim | November 26, 2008 9:21 AM | Report abuse

Nuremburg Chevy has entered the Leeguru sweepstakes. The rumor is that they are ready to offer the services of Boris Becker, for no more than 3 commercials and a 1 year supply of schnitzel, BMW of Fairfax is asking for 2 yrs of schnitzel and only 2 Boris Becker endorsement commercials. Things are getting interesting.

Posted by: JSchon | November 26, 2008 9:26 AM | Report abuse

mmmmmm - schnitzel

Posted by: uncatim | November 26, 2008 9:31 AM | Report abuse

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