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Some Odds and Ends

*I spoke to Dainius Zubrus's agent, Jerrold Colton, this morning. The Caps did not pursue him seriously and he doesn't expect that to change, especially with Michael Nylander now in the fold. Colton did say that Zubrus has some offers from other teams and is currently weighing his options. Something could be announced today.

*Did anyone hear Karl Alzner on Sports Talk 980 this morning? I've never seen Alzner play, but after speaking to him at the draft and hearing him this morning on Doc Walker's show, I'm really pulling for the kid to stick in Washington sooner rather than later. He would fill up my notebook every day. He's really, really funny.

*General Manager George McPhee will appear on Washington Post Live tonight. Be sure to tune in and hear his take on the Caps' spending spree.

*Alex Ovechkin and Nylander are supposed to get on the phone with some of the local media later today. I will post some of their comments afterward.

*A report in the Edmonton Sun says that Kevin Lowe was "livid" with the way things went down with Nylander yesterday. Remember that early radio report out of Edmonton saying that the center had signed a contract with the Oilers? Well something happened. What exactly, no one is saying. Terry Jones writes about it here.

By Tarik El-Bashir  |  July 3, 2007; 11:43 AM ET
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Next: Nylander Speaks


It would be nice to get Zubie back too...But not likely now & not at the money he wants. I wish him luck! Caps need a D-man before another C/RW

Posted by: tandtb13 | July 3, 2007 11:57 AM | Report abuse


Are you planning on being on WPL tonight as well?

Posted by: Capital Fanatic | July 3, 2007 12:02 PM | Report abuse

not sure yet. I spoke to the producer, Andy Siegel, this morning. But I'm going to be in the office, so we'll have to do a remote. I'll know soon.

Posted by: Tarik | July 3, 2007 12:06 PM | Report abuse


Congratulations on how many hits your blog has gotten the last few days! Perhaps with the improved direction and added interest, the higher up's will give you some more flexibility and give you more cover section this coming season.

Posted by: Leigh | July 3, 2007 12:09 PM | Report abuse

Leigh -- the higher ups have taken notice. thanks for your support, and to everyone else who takes the time to stop by.

Posted by: Tarik | July 3, 2007 12:22 PM | Report abuse

Thanks Tarik. This blog has been really informative, especially in th epast couple of days.

Posted by: Graham | July 3, 2007 12:25 PM | Report abuse

Tarik, As a Caps fan, your blog is far and away the first thing I check for hockey news. You broke the Nylander story before anyone1 Some expanded Caps coverage next year would be awesome. Keep up your great work.

Posted by: Pat | July 3, 2007 12:26 PM | Report abuse

I remember hearing Alzner talk to the media on draft day and thinking "that kid's gonna be a HUGE locker-room leader." His personality is great, and I hope his game lives up to the hype. Can't wait to see him on the ice.

Posted by: HolyOlie | July 3, 2007 12:27 PM | Report abuse

I can safely say i have no idea who is going to be on the blueline this year. I can't believe we have to wait another 3 months! I wonder where Zubie will go. I'm interested in hearing what happened in Edmonton. What a show.

Great job Tarik, you've done well at getting the locals all riled up.

Posted by: MM | July 3, 2007 12:44 PM | Report abuse

Great news about the editors taking notice. I'm looking forward to whatever increases they decide to make in Caps coverage.

Posted by: EricS | July 3, 2007 12:45 PM | Report abuse

Tarik, I read your report every day and also read the Washington Post every day. I have it delivered to my door. I am truly hoping the Post can get more coverage of the Caps next year. Without you on the job, we would have nothing. You do a superb job, but want to see your stuff closer to the front page of the sport pages next autumn.

Posted by: Doug | July 3, 2007 12:56 PM | Report abuse

Yeah, really... I think the Caps will be generating plenty of news on their own this year, but it's good to know the muckity-mucks over there at WaPo have noticed our dedication to your coverage.

Posted by: HolyOlie | July 3, 2007 12:56 PM | Report abuse

I wonder Edmonton got played by Nylander's agent to get more years/$$$ from the Caps.

Posted by: tallbear | July 3, 2007 12:57 PM | Report abuse

i feel like i should feel bad for edmonton, but not really

Posted by: ngu | July 3, 2007 12:58 PM | Report abuse

I'm curious to see how much Zubrus ends up signing for. Wonder if it'll be more or less than what he wanted from the Caps.

Hopefully the upsurge in the Caps' activity will mean more butts in seats, and more coverage in the Post-- spearheaded by our blogging beat writer. I don't always agree with your writing Tarik, but your blog dedication is always good and gets the Caps hockey community excited. Nice work.

And last, isn't the fact that another team is pissed off that the CAPS scooped them strangely invigorating? People want to be here over a Canadian hockey hotbed... scary!

Posted by: GJ | July 3, 2007 12:59 PM | Report abuse

Ditto on the Tarik love here. Your coverage demonstrates your love for the game and the Caps. It's nice to have an ally in this town.

Posted by: katzistan | July 3, 2007 1:01 PM | Report abuse

well, i for one am dissapponted in tarik's coverage. all the late breaking news and information is too much for me to handle. would it kill you to wait a few days before letting us in on all these deals. three in 24 hours made my head hurt. and now that means more pages in the paper to read. i'll never get work done now. WAY TO GO TARIK!!!

Posted by: Cap Fan 1 | July 3, 2007 1:02 PM | Report abuse

That's too bad about Zubie going somewhere else. He would be a great wingman on one of those checking lines.

Also, thanks Tarik for your hard work and dedication on covering the Washington Capitals. Keep up the good work.

Posted by: Big Papi | July 3, 2007 1:07 PM | Report abuse

My guess is that NO ONE around this here blog gets any work done...

Posted by: 007 | July 3, 2007 1:17 PM | Report abuse

Tarik -- Your blog is on my list of daily stops, if not the first, for Caps hockey news. Keep up the great work because we fans notice, I'll guarantee you that!

Didn't the Oilers offer him more money than the Caps did? Maybe already knowing the organization, staying on the East Coast, and having a chance to play with Ovie/mentor Backstrom may have swung it. It's still cool to get one past another team, though.

Posted by: Puckdawg69 | July 3, 2007 1:19 PM | Report abuse

So Tarik, I don't remember the last time that you had a Caps piece on the front page of the sports section-- what a pleasant surprise this morning to see you and the Caps there. (doh! it was a slow news day) Oh well...

The last few days have been allot like Christmas in July: you get almost everything you want, not maybe the thing you think you need the most, and you still hope that there will be a late arriving package.

Once again, I am looking forward to the new season, and maybe seeing the Caps legitmately get serious play on the front page of the sports section.

Posted by: Clarendon | July 3, 2007 1:31 PM | Report abuse

The Caps sign Nylander and make a pretty big splash but get no picture on the front page and bottom right coverage? What thuh? Oh wait, I should be THRILLED.

Thanks for all the great updates the past several days, you rock.

Posted by: On Ice | July 3, 2007 1:37 PM | Report abuse

Im excited about Nylander but I do worry about a 4 yr contract to a guy whos 34 already. I'm pretty sure he'll rack up some assists with Ovie on his line! For me to think playoffs, we need some help on D. Tarik - when will we get it?

Love the blog.

Posted by: capsfansince73 | July 3, 2007 1:41 PM | Report abuse

So what did Nylander and Ovechkin say?

Posted by: Mr. Blank | July 3, 2007 1:45 PM | Report abuse

Love how the author spelled Jagr's name in that article. Anyone else pick up on that? For being a hockey hotbed, might need to find themselves a Tarik.

Posted by: Yosh | July 3, 2007 1:58 PM | Report abuse

It is massively cool to have buzz about the Caps in July (though a Cup would be much preferred). Keep up the great work, Tarik! Your coverage is much enjoyed and will be even moreso when I'm trolling up in Philly.

Posted by: Geauxcaps | July 3, 2007 1:59 PM | Report abuse

Yosh - I noticed that as well.

On a side note, I moved up to Northern MD last year and was shocked by the number of Capitals fans (I guess I just would have assumed they would be Flyers fans). Throughout the year it is extremely agrevating having to hear about Ravens and Orioles crap, but at least there is one thing we can agree on.

Posted by: BT | July 3, 2007 2:08 PM | Report abuse

fleishman for conn smythe

Posted by: Fleishman | July 3, 2007 2:09 PM | Report abuse

I really really dont think theres much of a buzz about the lowly Orioles at anytime in the run of a year..

but other then that, fleishman for conn smyth ? haha that would be a welcomed surprise!

Posted by: Jimmy got paid | July 3, 2007 2:11 PM | Report abuse

Here's one for anyone looking for a good laugh today. Was looking on the 4th period's forums for rumors..came across this one...granted it's from early this year, but nevertheless...

"Well, if we wait for Ovechkin to be a UFA it might be a long time. If he really wants out of Washington, then the Capitals HAVE to grant him his wish, don't they? I can see the Leafs giving up Tucker, and a few draft picks for Ovechkin."

hopefully you got atleast a smile out of it, if not, I do accept courtesy chuckles.

Posted by: Yosh | July 3, 2007 2:17 PM | Report abuse

I just want to keep the Tarik and WaPo-Caps coverage love going. As long as the higher-ups are starting to take notice, I might as well add my voice to the choir.

Posted by: martin | July 3, 2007 2:18 PM | Report abuse

I don't really have anything to say. I'm just here to increase the response count :)

But yeah, I think this is becoming the goto spot for discussing breaking Caps news, because nobody is closer to the source than Tarik. Great job on breaking the Nylander signing, way before the pack!

I think it makes sense for us Caps fans to flock here as much as possible from all the other message boards, which are known only to dedicated hockey fans. Here at least we can help hockey get noticed a little bit more, both by WP and the general public.

Posted by: Vlad | July 3, 2007 2:31 PM | Report abuse

If it makes any difference, I work at a Target in Dumfries, VA, and customers there are now talking Caps in July. I've never heard anyone in my area talk about hockey since '98.

Posted by: Ogre | July 3, 2007 3:14 PM | Report abuse

Well, I've been reading and enjoying the coverage for the last few days and just wanted to say that for a Caps fan living in Phoenix, AZ, this is the best Caps coverage I could have hoped for this offseason. Keep it Tarik!

Posted by: stuffedinvader | July 3, 2007 3:36 PM | Report abuse

Alzner is a funny guy. I hope he is as good on the ice as he is with the media. Hope he sticks around too

Posted by: Brandon | July 3, 2007 3:36 PM | Report abuse

Maybe next season The Caps will finally get more coverage than HS soccer teams or exploding manhole covers.

Maybe even *gasp* a front page article?

Posted by: Anonymous | July 3, 2007 3:37 PM | Report abuse

Keep up the stellar work Tarik.

Hopefully you'll be able to be on with McPhee on WaPo Live later today. I'm interested in knowing more about Ovechkin's cryptic remarks in regards to a new contract.

Posted by: idil | July 3, 2007 4:17 PM | Report abuse

Hats off to Japers Rink, too, for all the timely links to this site...

Posted by: On Ice | July 3, 2007 4:36 PM | Report abuse

You rock Tarik! I'm a new hockey fan and I check your blog everyday for the interesting insights and breaking news! I can't wait for the season to start!

Posted by: kate | July 3, 2007 4:54 PM | Report abuse

Tarik,from a Caps fan in Georgia.I am so grateful for your dedication tothis blog and all the info.Since leaveing the area i turn to you to catch up on the goings on of the caps. And thanks to all the Caps fans on here for your input as well.

Posted by: GA.Capsfan | July 3, 2007 5:25 PM | Report abuse

You got a chuckle out of me, man! Tucker and draft picks for Ovie...hmm...yeah, that sounds about right! Jeez, what the heck are people thinking? Anyway, thanks for the item!

Posted by: Puckdawg69 | July 3, 2007 5:58 PM | Report abuse


Posted by: fleishman | July 4, 2007 12:17 PM | Report abuse

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