Network News

X My Profile
View More Activity
On Twitter: kcarrera and PostSports  |  Facebook  |  E-mail alerts: Sports and Redskins  |  RSS

Theodore: 'It was real frustrating'

Here are some additional quotes from today that didn't make my story for tomorrow's Post:

Scott Walker on not getting into the lineup Game 7

"I would have liked to go in. I talked to Bruce and he said, 'I'm happy [with] the way you handled yourself. You were good about being out.' It's a fine line. You don't want to be a guy who's content withing being sat out, but you want to be happy and supportive to your teammates. Every time I sat out, every game, it killed me a little bit inside. It tears your heart out. But you don't want to put on that face because you're trying to win. It really does kill you when you think you're a playoff kind of guy."

Walker on the psychological effect of the Caps struggling to score

"I was in the room for Game 7 and you could tell that it maybe a little frustrating or a little bit stressful. One time I looked up, I think, on the bench, and it was 33-11 [in shots] and we were losing 1-0. That has to play into your mindset a little bit as a goal-scorer. So it's like we weren't still flying and running and gunning. The puck just wasn't going in the net. When it's 33-11, you think the score would be at least 3 or 4-1, right?"

Jose Theodore on the frustration of watching from the bench for a second straight spring

"It was real frustrating. I think the year before I got pulled after the first game because they felt maybe the last 20 games I wasn't sharp and I was inconsistent. So this year I took a lot of pride in making sure that I was consistent. And if you look at the season -- except for one month around November to mid-December that I didn't play well -- I was pretty consistent. But I wanted to make sure the last stretch I was really playing the way I can. And I think that's what I did. You guys saw the games. I was looking forward to a long playoff run. Getting pulled after that second game and not coming back was obviously really tough and frustrating. But I was really confident that sooner or later, I would be back in the net. I wanted to keep going, now realizing that we didn't win that Game 7, that's tough. Because you're pretty much done. Can't do anything about it. So it's frustrating. But sometimes it's really about what you can control. And I really feel that I couldn't control much more than was going on."

Theodore on missing a golden opportunity with the team this season

"For sure. Anytime you have a team like we have and you finish first overall you look at the team and say if you want to win the Cup we have the team to do it. It's not like some previous years when I was in Montreal. We were finishing seventh or eighth. You know it's a long shot to win the Cup. You just want to get as far as you can. So for sure, I think last year and this year we had teams that could win Cups. That's what's really frustrating. This year I was really focused, really pumped because I really believed that we had the team to go a long way. It didn't happen."

Eric Belanger on the possibility of returning next season

"I had my meeting with Bruce this morning, and I told him I had some conversation with my agent and they'd like to have me back and I'd like to come back. It's my priority No. 1 right now to see if we can get something done before July 1."

Belanger on losing Game 5 at home

"That was the turning point. We all know that. We can sit here and say we should have done this, we should have done that. But we just didn't take our business when it was time. ... Especially at home. We had some chances to put them away with some power plays. We can talk about that as long as we want, but we didn't get the job done when it was time."

Alex Ovechkin on the blown opportunity in Game 5

"I think everybody knows we can win the Cup and we can be on top of everybody. But when you get the lead 3-1, you feel like maybe they're going to give up and we're going to win easy game and be ready for next round."

Ovechkin on whether losing in the Olympics or NHL playoffs hurt more

"It was probably the same, the same thing. But after Olympics, you have a chance to win the Cup and you have a lot of time to recover for the playoffs. But still it was pretty hard time to me when we lost against Canada. It's always hard to lose. But when you lose and you know it's done and can't change the time back and change something, it's always hard for me to wait until the next opportunity to win."

That's it from me for now. But I suspect there will be plenty of news in the coming weeks, so make sure to check Caps Insider often.

By Tarik El-Bashir  |  April 30, 2010; 7:13 PM ET
 
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Boswell on the physical pain of hockey
Next: Caps' summer schedule

Comments

pit scored on their PP. i knew it wasn't what montreal was doing against us. it had something to do with what they did but it was more of what we did (or didn't do on our PP) i see PIT scoring at least 5 on halak tonight and this is only going to make me more angry.

Posted by: rachel216 | April 30, 2010 7:28 PM | Report abuse

In another interview OV said: "In the regular season we score lots of goals and if we're losing 3-1 or 4-2, we know we can come back and win the game, but we didn't score the goals and that's probably our mistake."

No, Alex. Your mistake was not doing anything about falling behind in the first place. Grow up.

Posted by: caps1974 | April 30, 2010 7:30 PM | Report abuse

at the end of it all, its just talk. Next season we'll hear the same crap.

"We're going to learn"
"We're on a mission this year"
"I've never seen the guys this motivated to prove everyone wrong"
"Nothing short of the Cup will make us satisfied"

unfortunately, it'll still be a run n gun team with spotty work ethic who thinks just because they can come back in reg season games with an all-out effort after falling behind, that somehow it translates into the same results in the playoffs.

its kinda funny if it wasn't so sad.

Posted by: cstanton1 | April 30, 2010 7:32 PM | Report abuse

The Caps score one lousy goal on the PP in 7 games and the Pens score on their first try. How fitting.

Posted by: visionof75 | April 30, 2010 7:33 PM | Report abuse

I really hope the Habs win the series.

Posted by: MyPostIDisAfake | April 30, 2010 7:33 PM | Report abuse

Pens 2 for 2 on the PP.. this is really sickening

Posted by: joek443 | April 30, 2010 7:36 PM | Report abuse

PIT with already 2 goals in the first period. Halak 4/6. Yeah Halak is soooooooooo good. I think I’m going to puke. It’s going to be our fault PIT gets a free pass to the Eastern Conference Finals.

Posted by: rachel216 | April 30, 2010 7:38 PM | Report abuse

Pens PP: 2/2

~Click~

Gettin' the pistol ready....

Posted by: MyPostIDisAfake | April 30, 2010 7:39 PM | Report abuse

lol how sad. 2 PP goals for PIT in the first period, already more than we had in 7 games. embarrassing. how fitting that the pens will embarass us and make us look really bad by killing the Habs.

Posted by: rachel216 | April 30, 2010 7:41 PM | Report abuse

i don't have the stomach to watch the game, i really could give a flying f who wins the cup. i am sick of watching other teams advance and the caps packing their bags to go home. at least I get to giant center and watch the bears win another calder cup, but i would trade that for another round of watching the caps. thanks a lot bb and team. hey, if you get to go to giant center you will really enjoy yourselves, great atmosphere. tickets should be attainable in the next round, but if they go to the calder cup, good luck.

Posted by: TheSmurfs | April 30, 2010 7:41 PM | Report abuse

I hope Pittsburgh wins in 4 games. I hope they DOMINATE on the PP. I hope OV watches EVERY game. Bruce, too. Be happy, you can do it!

Posted by: caps1974 | April 30, 2010 7:45 PM | Report abuse

Obviously one period doesn't make a series .... but those two PP goals had something in common .... somebody near the net messing with Halak's vision. Guerin was there on Gonchar's goal, and Kunitz was there on Staal's. It's a tale as old as time .... if the goaltender has unobstructed vision, he'll stop damn near anything. A body or two between the goalie and the shooter does wonders. To me, that's one of the Caps most glaring areas for improvement.

Jeff

Posted by: PensFan98 | April 30, 2010 8:03 PM | Report abuse

The Penguins have scored twice as many PP goals in 13 minutes as the Caps scored in 7 games. The Pens have scored as many goals in 13 minutes against "knock out" goalie Halak as the caps scored in 2 games.

It's a good thing none of us could see this coming several miles away, eh?

Posted by: VTDuffman | April 30, 2010 8:07 PM | Report abuse

LOL PIT with another PP goal. That's 3! THREE. The total of goals we had in the last 3 games.

They gotta be thinking "this is too damn easy"

MTL showing who they really are. An 8th seed. So remind me again why it was so difficult to beat the Habs?

Posted by: rachel216 | April 30, 2010 8:10 PM | Report abuse

Jeff: thanks for telling us now. We all knew we needed more net presence, that was obvious. But the Caps failed to do that.

Halak is friggin' 5/8 tonight. GOD I'M SO ANGRY. Halak is just an average goalie, I'm sorry. But we made him look like a worldbeater. Like we do with every goalie.

Every single Caps player better be watching the Pens right now.

Posted by: rachel216 | April 30, 2010 8:15 PM | Report abuse

Goodness gracious, this superhuman goalie is looking positively normal. I am shocked and amazed at this development.

Posted by: VTDuffman | April 30, 2010 8:16 PM | Report abuse

It's embarrassing that Letang can just walk right in on the top of the slot and pick a corner of the goal and our guys were missing the entire net on most shots. Pittsburgh sweeps this series. This is really embarrassing.

Posted by: LloydChristmas | April 30, 2010 8:16 PM | Report abuse

Halak doesn't look like superman anymore. What are the odds? it must have been because the Caps completely wore him out .

Posted by: LloydChristmas | April 30, 2010 8:18 PM | Report abuse

Goodness gracious, this superhuman goalie is looking positively normal. I am shocked and amazed at this development.

Posted by: VTDuffman

I'm not at all surprised. I knew PIT was going to light him up. The Versus guys are talking about putting Price in already. LOL. Yeah we had a load of shots but more than a half of the shots were not quality shots.

Posted by: rachel216 | April 30, 2010 8:21 PM | Report abuse

it must have been because the Caps completely wore him out .

Posted by: LloydChristmas

No. It's because this is who he really is. Because of us, he looked like the best goalie in the world. I agree with you, Pens sweep this thing easily.

Posted by: rachel216 | April 30, 2010 8:23 PM | Report abuse

The caps truly suck in the playoffs. Their non-physical play and players will never win a cup.

Posted by: evtoi | April 30, 2010 8:31 PM | Report abuse

I had sarcasm tags around that sentence. They just didn't show up on this messageboard format. I was definitely being sarcastic.

Posted by: LloydChristmas | April 30, 2010 8:34 PM | Report abuse

Pure rubbish gmgm and bb. It was not halak that beat you. It was your non-physical play, non-physical players, and your system that failed you.

Look at how hard the pens are battling along the boards and cycling the puck.

The pens are 3/3 on the pp. What do you have to say besides "we have a really good team" and "Bruce is a really good coach"?

Pure garbage! You need to take responsibility and admit your mistakes.

Posted by: evtoi | April 30, 2010 8:34 PM | Report abuse

Boudreau hung Theo out to dry. Theo should have started the whole series. He earned it in the regular season. While he was decent, Varly did nothing this year. Just another reason to fire Boudreau...

Posted by: butcherbaker | April 30, 2010 8:35 PM | Report abuse

Boudreau hung Theo out to dry. Theo should have started the whole series. He earned it in the regular season. While he was decent, Varly did nothing this year. Just another reason to fire Boudreau...
Posted by: butcherbaker

I agree completely. Varly did nothing during nothing during the rs and not enough during the pos. One of several blunders by the coaching staff.

Posted by: evtoi | April 30, 2010 8:43 PM | Report abuse

LloydChristmas: I totally knew that... haha

butcherbaker: I totally agree with you. Why did Varly have a longer leash than Theo? Theo was the goalie that carried the Caps into the playoffs, he had earned the right to play in the playoffs. BB said he would have a longer leash than last year. He didn't. He had one bad game after he gave up two and he got pulled. Varly in game 6 gave up 2 and one was questionable, and he stayed in the net.

Posted by: rachel216 | April 30, 2010 8:43 PM | Report abuse

This is sad watching this game. I gotta turn it off because the Pens look like they are scoring at will. Halak is no great goalie....We just suck.

Posted by: kyle_woodruff | April 30, 2010 8:44 PM | Report abuse

Boudreau hung Theo out to dry. Theo should have started the whole series. He earned it in the regular season. While he was decent, Varly did nothing this year. Just another reason to fire Boudreau...

Posted by: butcherbaker

Pretty much, but at the same time, BB knows Theo will not be back next year. Unless he wants to take a pay cut (which I doubt). So may as well get Varly, the goalie who will be here for a few more years, some additional playoff experience.

Halak is looking awful. It's amazing what teamwork can do. The Caps have a long way to go.

Posted by: LloydChristmas | April 30, 2010 8:46 PM | Report abuse

I still do not understand why they are keeping BB. Noce guy, excellent AHl coach. Folks will say he turned the team around. Maybe a little.

Posted by: pkme | April 30, 2010 8:47 PM | Report abuse

Also, how many games has Theo had where teams only scored 1 goal on him? He'd pretty much have to have a shut out for the Caps to win, with how bad the offense was doing. A lot of his wins were 6-5, 5-4 scoring wins which obviously won't cut it.

Posted by: LloydChristmas | April 30, 2010 8:50 PM | Report abuse

4 goals, how can this be? I have Been lectured for the last two days that Halak is the best goalie since Patrick Roy and there us nothing wrong with this team, it's coaching, or system. They were just unfortunate vicuña of a superhuman goaltender.

Huh, how about that.

Posted by: VTDuffman | April 30, 2010 8:50 PM | Report abuse

Halak

Caps: 9 periods: gave up 3 goals

Pens: 2 periods: gave up 4 goals

Posted by: rachel216 | April 30, 2010 8:50 PM | Report abuse

0.750 save percentage for Halak.

Damn, he must be Jesus.

Posted by: MyPostIDisAfake | April 30, 2010 8:53 PM | Report abuse

Pitssburgh is better coached

Posted by: pkme | April 30, 2010 8:53 PM | Report abuse

Cuz BB is stubborn and quite frankly, insane.

MTL is showing everyone who they really are, a team that just got into the playoffs. ONLY WE would lose to them. Once again, PIT shows us how it's supposed to be done. Where is MTL's unbeatable goalie and their stiffling defense? Halak's SV%: .75

Posted by: rachel216 | April 30, 2010 8:54 PM | Report abuse

AND the Pens have three power play goals.

Posted by: MyPostIDisAfake | April 30, 2010 8:55 PM | Report abuse

Again BB is in over his head. He looks dazed and confused on the bench. He always looks like he is panicking. The team panicks because the coach panics. He also never takes any responsibilty for the teams performance. Shows a lack of honesty and accountability.

Posted by: pkme | April 30, 2010 8:57 PM | Report abuse

I wonder if the Caps would have won game 4 by only 1 goal instead of 6-3 if Price would have got the start in game 5.......hmmmm

Posted by: yesisaiditfirst | April 30, 2010 8:58 PM | Report abuse

BB has to get some credit though when he came in, the team was dead last in the NHL. He had them on a run where they got into the playoffs. No team had ever done that before, if I recall correctly.

Posted by: LloydChristmas | April 30, 2010 8:59 PM | Report abuse

Anyone notice how the Versus announcers keep talking crap about the Caps. Complete homers and on a National game. Way to pile it on the Caps. if you are not a fan of the Caps shut your mouth. I do not trash talk other teams or their players. Even Laughlin, Koken and Benantic keep it clean and fair. Versus covergae of this game sucks.

Posted by: pkme | April 30, 2010 9:00 PM | Report abuse

yesisaiditfirst: That crossed my mind after game 5. I think for sure Price would've got the start in game 5 because he actually played pretty well in that game. The Ovie goals were unstoppable and Knuble's goal was def. not going to be stopped. But his hot head actions after Chimera's goal and Backstrom's goal is why they went back to Halak.

Posted by: rachel216 | April 30, 2010 9:02 PM | Report abuse

pitt with their 4th PP goal - now 5-2

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | April 30, 2010 9:04 PM | Report abuse

Ovi can do one thing --shoot. Sid can and does do it all. Battle, shoot, pass,handle the puck, ...

Posted by: evtoi | April 30, 2010 9:05 PM | Report abuse

These commentators are the worst of any group in any NHL market. They really suck.
Folks need to write versus about theses clowns as I have already done. It is okay to be homers when it is a regional game but not a National game,

Posted by: pkme | April 30, 2010 9:05 PM | Report abuse

I'M SO ANGRY. WE LOST TO THESE LOSERS??????? FIRE BB!

5 goals on Halak.

Disgrace.

Posted by: rachel216 | April 30, 2010 9:05 PM | Report abuse

Can you imagine Keith Jones doing this even though he does Flyers games? Have you ever heard Laughlin be this much of a homer.

Posted by: pkme | April 30, 2010 9:07 PM | Report abuse

halak pulled at 14:42 of the third

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | April 30, 2010 9:08 PM | Report abuse

When the Pens finish their sweep of the sorry Habs I hope they thank the Caps for losing to the Habs. This is like adding insult to injury.

Posted by: rachel216 | April 30, 2010 9:08 PM | Report abuse

Pulled Halak.

Posted by: pkme | April 30, 2010 9:08 PM | Report abuse

i see PIT scoring at least 5 on halak tonight and this is only going to make me more angry.

Posted by: rachel216 | April 30, 2010 7:28 PM |

i knew it!

Posted by: rachel216 | April 30, 2010 9:09 PM | Report abuse

The difference between the Pens and Caps is that the Pens are one of the biggest hitting teams in the NHL.

Posted by: pkme | April 30, 2010 9:10 PM | Report abuse

Key Statistic:

Pens have four power play goals

Posted by: MyPostIDisAfake | April 30, 2010 9:11 PM | Report abuse

Yeah this is looking really bad. Why could the Caps not do this? Pittsburgh is not doing anything out of the ordinary, they're keeping it simple and putting pucks to the net, not wide of the net.

Posted by: LloydChristmas | April 30, 2010 9:11 PM | Report abuse

I hope the Caps players and management are watching this game tonight. This is why the Penguins have a Cup and the Caps don't. They make a goalie look like a world beater only to have the Pens bring him back down to earth. It's a committed team where everyone gets involved and bangs and plays a physical game.

Four power play goals? And the Caps had how many? It is coaching and Boudreau better take a good long hard look in the mirror and think about how he coaches in some areas. It's not getting done.

Posted by: Jonathan6 | April 30, 2010 9:11 PM | Report abuse

i love it. 4 PPGs for the Pens tonight

cue up the "Caps just wore out the Habs and the Pens are just taking advantage of it" reasoning.

when the pens dismantle the posers known as the Habs, it should shed more light on just how much the Caps really did underachieve.

Posted by: cstanton1 | April 30, 2010 9:12 PM | Report abuse

Four power play goals? And the Caps had how many? It is coaching and Boudreau better take a good long hard look in the mirror and think about how he coaches in some areas. It's not getting done.

Posted by: Jonathan6 | April 30, 2010 9:11 PM | Report abuse

ted loves mcphee, mcphee loves Bruce. Nothing's gonna change. Not unless the NHL spots the Caps a 3-1 lead in every series. oops!

Posted by: cstanton1 | April 30, 2010 9:13 PM | Report abuse

Tarik reported today that Boudreau got the vote of confidence from GM GM and he will "be here for a long time" -

Don Cherry just said on Hockey Night in Canada intermission that the Caps would be crazy to get rid of Boudreau - he said if Leonsis is thinking that he is "an idiot"

Why don't networks do their homework on facts before letting their talking heads say stuff like that? McPhee and Leonsis make the decision not us irate fans and DC sportswriters...geesh

Posted by: yesisaiditfirst | April 30, 2010 9:14 PM | Report abuse

The pens play as a TEAM. The caps do not!

Posted by: evtoi | April 30, 2010 9:15 PM | Report abuse

This is making me so much more angry at the Caps. I don't even bother fighting the OV vs Crosby debate anymore.

Posted by: LloydChristmas | April 30, 2010 9:16 PM | Report abuse

The difference between the Pens and Caps is that the Pens are one of the biggest hitting teams in the NHL.

Posted by: pkme | April 30, 2010 9:10 PM | Report abuse

bro, i brought that up about 15 times this past season only to be told that hitting is overrated and it doesn't matter see because the Caps have a better (reg season) record than the Pens do. Get it? it didn't matter that the Pens at one point had 300 more hits than did the Capitals. That's just a stat and all that matters is wins and losses. Well, at least we got the President's trophy. It bought the chumps in charge another few yrs of employment.

Posted by: cstanton1 | April 30, 2010 9:16 PM | Report abuse

Watching the Pens-Habs is just one gigantic facepalm.

I'm going to get a palm-sized blister on my face just from rubbing it constantly.

Posted by: MyPostIDisAfake | April 30, 2010 9:19 PM | Report abuse

you may as well just bring up Doug Yingst and Mark French from Hershey. Those guys know how to win. Yingst would even probably be able to win with Boudreau because he'd stack the roster in such a way that Bruce would be inclined to coach a certain way. The Bears just swept Albany who was a very tough team to play against. That's all about FOCUS. They have it. On the road, at home. They've won 8 of 9 playoff games this year and they don't even have a great defense on paper. There's probably one legit NHL prospect on defense on that team and thats Alzner (not counting Carlson who's been up here)

Posted by: cstanton1 | April 30, 2010 9:19 PM | Report abuse

Montreal is not so keen on blocking 40 shots a game anymore are they? It's a failed strategy of a weak team that they got lucky with for a series. As far as net presence, particularly on the power play, there were often a lot of people in front of the net, but the Caps were too slow and hesitant with the puck to get a shot through or create open shots on the wings. We never forced them out of position as the Pens seem to be doing so easily tonight. We also have obviously softened them up for the Pens. What a gift! Every Montreal player must have 10 bad bruises.

Anyway, when the Pens sweep the Habs it will be further embarrassment for the Caps.

Ovechkin admitted they thought the series was over after the 3-1 lead and they played like it in game 5. That is not championship material whatsoever! Losers.

Posted by: rphilli721 | April 30, 2010 9:20 PM | Report abuse

you said it, the Pens do play as a team and they have for the past 3+ seasons.

And Crosby can always find a way to create offense even when teams focus on him. Not to bag on Ovy because he does so much for us. But it doesn't help when you don't get a lot of good coaching except for "go get em boys!"

Bruce is like Norv. Can't make adjustments.

Posted by: cstanton1 | April 30, 2010 9:21 PM | Report abuse

Fleury still looks like he's a slice of swiss cheese standing in front of the net. Open holes all over the place.

Posted by: LloydChristmas | April 30, 2010 9:24 PM | Report abuse

i guarantee you that Bruce will NOT be here a long long time. He'll be gone in 2 yrs. After 2 more failed postseason appearances. There is no way on god's green earth that Boudreau changes the very fibre of his being and coaches hockey in a different manner. He is who he is. And with McPhee at GM, they both have a very one-dimensional approach to the game. Even if they start making adjustments (or compensations) to create more balance they will always revert to what they know best. Which unfortunately, is not aligned with advancing deep into the playoffs.

Posted by: cstanton1 | April 30, 2010 9:24 PM | Report abuse

@rachel216

The Pens killing Montreal bothers me no end as well. I would say that the Caps need to watch the tapes of how the Pens do power plays against Montreal during training camp next year.

Yes, the Pens essentially have been given the Eastern Conference championship on a golden platter since NONE of the division winners could make it out of Round 1. It greatly bothers me that our most hated rival almost always makes it to the SC Finals when they're the equivalent of a Wild Card team every bleeping year. This will likely be the third year in a row where the "wild card" Pens make the SC Finals. At least the dominant Yankee teams and Cowboy teams have won their divisions.

Posted by: CapsFan75 | April 30, 2010 9:30 PM | Report abuse

look at the success Hershey has had over the past 5 yrs. With 3 different coaches. Who's the common factor? The GM.

The GM is more important than the coach. The AVs GM won 2 Cups with 2 different coaches, neither of whom were considered to be great coaches. The Devils GM won 2 Cups with 2 different coaches.

The Bears won 2 Calders recently with 2 coaches and will probably win their 3rd with yet another coach.

You can win with a coach who isn't great, but you cannot win without a great GM at the helm. Period.

Posted by: cstanton1 | April 30, 2010 9:30 PM | Report abuse

After watching this game, I don't think it's our players that are the problem, I think the issue is all the individual efforts always being made. There was no team work at all in the series. Maybe that falls on the coaching staff.

Posted by: LloydChristmas | April 30, 2010 9:30 PM | Report abuse

Calm down a little people. I think the Pens handle the Habs fairly easily, but Montreal is also obviously fatigued having played a game 7 two days ago. The time and space for Pittsburgh tonight is nothing like what we saw in our series. But, the Pens do play the right way to defeat the Habs regardless.

But, it reinforces why the Caps are such losers for phoning in game 5 of our series. You don't give the other team hope and you don't want to go 7 games bc even if you win you are virtually giving away game 1 of the subsequent series. They simply aren't championship material yet.

Posted by: rphilli721 | April 30, 2010 9:33 PM | Report abuse

Yes, the Pens essentially have been given the Eastern Conference championship on a golden platter
-------------

thats a crock. They outworked every team to win. They got nothing handed to them. They're talented, they're tough. Great leadership from the top down. That's how you win. To say the Pens got something handed to them is just disrespectful of the effort they had to put out (all year) to get there. You start with the fundamentals in camp, not 2 weeks before the playoffs start. And that team plays hockey the right way despite all their talent. They're tougher than the Flyers and they're very talented. The Caps should just watch EVERY game they play, not just their PP v the Habs.

Posted by: cstanton1 | April 30, 2010 9:33 PM | Report abuse

"Even if they start making adjustments (or compensations) to create more balance they will always revert to what they know best"

Posted by: cstanton1 | April 30, 2010 9:24 PM

i sure hope you are wrong - but i have nothing to reference to offer a rebuttal

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | April 30, 2010 9:35 PM | Report abuse

@cstanton,

I don't know much about minor league hockey, but isn't the farm team stocked with the players that are given to them by the big league team??? If so, your last post makes zero sense.

Regardless, it's a combination of GM and coach in every sport that is the recipe for success. Making a blanket statement like that is ignorant.

Posted by: rphilli721 | April 30, 2010 9:41 PM | Report abuse

Yes, the Pens essentially have been given the Eastern Conference championship on a golden platter since NONE of the division winners could make it out of Round 1. It greatly bothers me that our most hated rival almost always makes it to the SC Finals when they're the equivalent of a Wild Card team every bleeping year. This will likely be the third year in a row where the "wild card" Pens make the SC Finals. At least the dominant Yankee teams and Cowboy teams have won their divisions.

Posted by: CapsFan75 | April 30, 2010 9:30 PM

Pens would have no trouble with any teams in the EC, especially the Caps.

Posted by: evtoi | April 30, 2010 9:41 PM | Report abuse

Calm down a little people. I think the Pens handle the Habs fairly easily, but Montreal is also obviously fatigued having played a game 7 two days ago. The time and space for Pittsburgh tonight is nothing like what we saw in our series. But, the Pens do play the right way to defeat the Habs regardless.

Posted by: rphilli721

No I just think PIT is showing everyone what team MTL is, and that's an 8th seed that barely got into the playoffs. But we made them look amazing. I see the same thing happening in game 2 at Pittsburgh.

Posted by: rachel216 | April 30, 2010 9:43 PM | Report abuse

@cstanton,

Ummm...they are being given a gift with a lot of the top seeds in the East already gone. Sure, they still have to win. But, playing lesser talented teams all they way to the SC Finals would be a nice gift and I'm sure the players would readily admit to such if that were to happen.

Posted by: rphilli721 | April 30, 2010 9:45 PM | Report abuse

What was the Caps record without the Great 8. Pretty darn good. The Key to next year's season is keeping the Great 8 on Adderall and focused on teamwork.

Posted by: diner99 | April 30, 2010 9:46 PM | Report abuse

McPhee and Boudreau brought this wrath and anger upon themselves for using Halak as an excuse for losing. The pens have exposed the reality. GM & BB should take responsibility for their faults and mistakes.

Posted by: evtoi | April 30, 2010 9:48 PM | Report abuse

@Rachel,

Pitt is making a nice statement right off the bat for sure. But, again, Montreal is fatigued so game 1 was a much easier victory than they will see for the remainder of the series. I think we were overconfident and reckless with Montreal and Montreal gained confidence with every little success. There are some mental aspects to the game and leadership position that I don't think Ovechkin has grasped just yet. We won't win the cup until he does. I think Ovechkin admitting he and the team thought the series was over after we went up 3-1 is very telling both for him and the team. Halak and the Habs didn't get really good until they started to think they could beat us and we let them think that by throwing away game one almost blowing game 2 and then not showing up for game 5 until it was too late. We deserved to lose, but it was more mental than anything.

Posted by: rphilli721 | April 30, 2010 9:55 PM | Report abuse

Wild card? Because the Pens did not win their division.

Then what would you call the Habs? Bottom dwellers?

The Caps had a chance to take that gift.
But it was returned. Address unknown.

Posted by: akus2 | April 30, 2010 9:57 PM | Report abuse

"Pens would have no trouble with any teams in the EC, especially the Caps."

What a load of crap! Last year's team took the Pens to 7 games and this year's team was much better. To say the Pens would have "no trouble" with the Caps is flat out stupid.

Posted by: rphilli721 | April 30, 2010 9:59 PM | Report abuse

GMGM saying the phunny phat phrog is going nowhere - "He will be here a long time". His excuse: can't make drastic decisions based on one bad week.

No George, not one week. Try 3 years in a row. We should have lost Game 7 to the Rangers -- Varly made incredible saves in the first period (where we came out flat). Thank god for the Fedorov fluker on the screen on Redden. Otherwise we are 0-3 in Game 7s.

Common denominator: this team is super-tight in every playoff game. No confidence, nervous, erratic. Thats on the phat phrog and his system and on his leadership.

Posted by: Political_Stratgst | April 30, 2010 10:01 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: rphilli721

Three years in a row and it's "mental"? How about a lack of teamwork, lack of physical play, lack of cycling the puck, lack of battling along the boards, lousy shooting, poor coaching, etc.

Posted by: evtoi | April 30, 2010 10:02 PM | Report abuse

the one consistent thing about the Caps in the Mcphee era is lost playoff advantages and early outs. No problem seeing where the problem here is. George must go.

Posted by: festus75 | April 30, 2010 10:04 PM | Report abuse

Just unbelievably frustrating.

Starting from the first minute of game one, the Pens handedly defeat the Habs making 25% of all shots on goal and chase away Jaroslav Halak, the Second Coming of Christ.

Posted by: MyPostIDisAfake | April 30, 2010 10:08 PM | Report abuse

"Pens would have no trouble with any teams in the EC, especially the Caps."

What a load of crap! Last year's team took the Pens to 7 games and this year's team was much better. To say the Pens would have "no trouble" with the Caps is flat out stupid.

Posted by: rphilli721 | April 30, 2010 9:59 PM | Report abuse

Calm yourself.

Posted by: evtoi | April 30, 2010 10:09 PM | Report abuse

@rphilli721

I think the Pens would have had trouble beating NJ. But NJ also lost in the first round as well. Their regular season performance against the Flyers was a foreshadowing of how they'd do in the playoffs as they were 1-5 against them.

Apparently, the Devils are not built for playoff hockey either. Nor are the teams that have won the North East division in the last two years.

Posted by: CapsFan75 | April 30, 2010 10:10 PM | Report abuse

Backs, what was up with that tacky shirt you were today? I was going to buy your jersey but now.. not so much..

Posted by: kmr2r | April 30, 2010 10:11 PM | Report abuse

maybe Ted/GMGM/BB should have waited till tomorrow for their end of the year self-analyses... this game makes'em look like a bunch of clowns who don't have a clue as to how to win in the playoffs

Posted by: joek443 | April 30, 2010 10:14 PM | Report abuse

The Pittsburgh Penguins were 4 for 4 on the power play tonight in their win against the Habs. 4 for 4! Were you watching McPhee, Boudreau, Ovechkin, Green, Semin, etc..? That is how you get it done against Montreal. Pathetic. Enough said. Go Caps. Better build a "real" playoff team next year. No more excuses.

Posted by: jmarks09 | April 30, 2010 10:17 PM | Report abuse

I never understood keeping Walker on the bench for 6 games when the whole reason he was acquired seemed to be his playoff experience and leadership (albeit he'd only ever scored one goal in his playoffs experience).

It's interesting Belanger sounds like they want to re-sign him. Most fans were writing him off already as far as remaining here.

Posted by: blackjack65 | April 30, 2010 10:17 PM | Report abuse

@akus2

No, I don't call Montreal a "bottom feeder". I also consider them a "wild card" but a wild card that is further down in the standings than Pitt.

The "gift" of the Eastern Conference championship handed to Pittsburgh isn't just the fact the Caps lost. It's also the fact that NJ and Buffalo, the other top 2 seeds, also lost in Round 1. If the Caps had won Round 1 and the other top seeds were gone and Pitt were still alive, I would not really feel we were getting a gift, except of a better chance of getting to Round 3 than otherwise.

Posted by: CapsFan75 | April 30, 2010 10:18 PM | Report abuse

I really like the people who sit near me but you homophobic woman hating jerk who sat in 421 row G seat 14 or 15 or 16.. (the second seat from the end) during game 7
1. dont ever come back
3. Learn some words that dont rhyme with puck
4. I would LOVE for Halak, Ovi or any hocker player to hear the crap you were talking in person
5. with as much homophobia as you were demonstrating (in regard to Halak; offering to take your pants down and asking your male friend to join you; and your detailed discussion of the players bodies; offering your butt to your friend to be smacked) I really hope you someday realize what you are suppressing.
6. comparing men to female organs is what kids do in middle school. grow up
7. I would really love to have Ovi's mom punch you in the face.
6. you are a terrible fan. I hope you feel like an idiot that we were all laughing at your assertions that the Habs would kill Philly in round 2.


(Sorry fellow posters I had to get that out) GO AWAY fake hockey fans

Posted by: kmr2r | April 30, 2010 10:21 PM | Report abuse

Say what you want about BB's system, but it isn't the reason we lost.

We weren't giving up a tremendous amount of goals each game, we just weren't scoring them. The defense needs to be better yes, i agree with that. But it was up to our players to score goals, even 3 would have gotten it done most nights.

Posted by: digster1013 | April 30, 2010 10:25 PM | Report abuse

sid>ov
malkin>semin
gonchar >green

pens >caps

Posted by: wendel2 | April 30, 2010 10:38 PM | Report abuse

"Say what you want about BB's system, but it isn't the reason we lost."

---

I take it you didn't watch tonight's Pens-Habs game?

BB's system is the exact reason we lost. It's not designed to win Playoff Hockey at the NHL Level.

Jaraslav Halak is not a great goalie. He's an average to good goalie who was made to look like the 2nd coming of Patrick Roy because he was up against a team playing a system that's unintentionally designed to allow mediocre goalie look like superstars.

If you want proof of that? He let in 5 goals and was pulled in one single game in the following round. The Contrast is literally so stark that any other conclusion is completely unsupported by fact.

The. System. Is. The. Problem.

Posted by: VTDuffman | April 30, 2010 10:45 PM | Report abuse

@digster1013

The Caps' series loss to Montreal reminds a great deal of another agonizing series loss I suffered through. One year the Baltimore Orioles, after a season where their offense was unbelievably good, met the Pittsburgh Pirates in the World Series and got up to a 3 game to 1 edge but ended up losing the series in 7 games. The O's offense had gone strangely silent during those 3 losses.

(I must admit that I was a Pittsburgh Pirate hater during that time frame so that series loss was really hard to stomach. My Pirate hatred of those days contributed to me hating the Pens.)

Posted by: CapsFan75 | April 30, 2010 10:47 PM | Report abuse

look at the success Hershey has had over the past 5 yrs. With 3 different coaches. Who's the common factor? The GM.

The GM is more important than the coach. The AVs GM won 2 Cups with 2 different coaches, neither of whom were considered to be great coaches. The Devils GM won 2 Cups with 2 different coaches.

The Bears won 2 Calders recently with 2 coaches and will probably win their 3rd with yet another coach.

You can win with a coach who isn't great, but you cannot win without a great GM at the helm. Period.

Posted by: cstanton1

But, Doug Yingst did not draft Neuvy, Carlson, Alzner, M.Green, B. Gordon, C.Bourque or trade for Flash, Laich, etc. Those guys and a lot others I didn't mention were key cogs in winning those Calder Cups. Yes, Yingst brought in Nycholat, Beech, Giroux, Aucoin, and others, with the permission of GMGM. Those guys are great players in the AHL, not the NHL. The Bears are like the New York Yankees of baseball in the AHL. If your not playing in the NHL, Hershey is the best place to play hockey. World class organization with history, and the best fans around. Almost every player that plays here says that. We get 8,000 on a Wednesday night, when other teams can't draw 3,000 on a Saturday night. The Bears have the Caps to thank for those Calder Cups.

Posted by: TheSmurfs | April 30, 2010 10:50 PM | Report abuse

The Power Play was the problem, not the system!

Why do you think the Pens won tonight?

Posted by: digster1013 | April 30, 2010 10:55 PM | Report abuse

"The Power Play was the problem, not the system!"

---

It's a good thing that a teams power play is not part of their "system," or you would look like a complete retard posting something like that.

Posted by: VTDuffman | April 30, 2010 10:57 PM | Report abuse

@digster1013

The Caps should be made to watch videos of how the Pens do Power Plays during training camp this fall.

Tonight's game should definitely be included in that video. The Caps should emulate the Penguins' way of playing since the Pens know how to play playoff hockey.

Posted by: CapsFan75 | April 30, 2010 10:59 PM | Report abuse

backstrom > sid
ov > malkin
carlson > gonchar

caps > pens

suck it!

Posted by: Political_Stratgst | April 30, 2010 11:00 PM | Report abuse

OChokekin might be the most interesting man in the world and he doesnt always drink beer. But when he does, Crosby steals his Dos Equis!

Posted by: laker13231 | April 30, 2010 11:01 PM | Report abuse

It was the failure to make adjustments, not the system. And yes lol I realize that the PP is part of the system, I just didn't explain myself.

And ultimately it's on the players to score the goals, we had the chances.

Posted by: digster1013 | April 30, 2010 11:03 PM | Report abuse

"The Caps should be made to watch videos of how the Pens do Power Plays during training camp this fall.

Tonight's game should definitely be included in that video. The Caps should emulate the Penguins' way of playing since the Pens know how to play playoff hockey."

---

The Caps should be tied to chairs and forced to have their eyes open "A Clockwork Orange" Style while watching a video of just this game over and over again while the Red Rockers poke them with sticks in the belly button until they cry and admit that they have no idea how a championship team plays playoff hockey.

Posted by: VTDuffman | April 30, 2010 11:05 PM | Report abuse

@CapsFan75

I agree they definitely should.

It is just really annoying because they were to stubborn to try and change the PP up. They failed to realize their PP style didn't match up with how the Habs play the PK. It is like they didn't watch any vidoes at all to see how to beat their PK.

Posted by: digster1013 | April 30, 2010 11:07 PM | Report abuse

"It was the failure to make adjustments, not the system. And yes lol I realize that the PP is part of the system, I just didn't explain myself."

---

We're really getting into an arguement of semantics here. But you realize that they thing that they were "failing to make adjustments" to was THE SYSTEM, right?

They failed to make adjustments to a system with a track record of playoff failure, that's why they lost.

Posted by: VTDuffman | April 30, 2010 11:10 PM | Report abuse

You are probably right VT, I guess I'm just being stubborn myself. I guess I just dont want to accept the fact we arent going to win with what we have.

Posted by: digster1013 | April 30, 2010 11:19 PM | Report abuse

@VTDuffman

I'm not sure what you're arguing here. The power play really isn't part of the "system" that anyone's talking about, and you know it. There was no reason to expect that a top-performing regular season power play would do so abysmally in the playoffs. What tactical adjustments, exactly, would you have made to a regular-season super power play to do well in the playoffs? This was clearly a freak thing that devolved into extreme frustration and self-psyching-out over the course of this series. They made unfortunate and sloppy mistakes of the kind they rarely made in the regular season, and these just got worse and worse. Our power play wasn't nearly this bad against Montreal in the regular season. When people say "system," they're talking about the offense-first style that actually worked quite well in getting the Caps in the zone and not giving up a lot of shots on our own end. Some less panicky, individualistic play and some lucky bounces, and I guarantee everyone would be talking about how great things are.

Posted by: BigMogilny | April 30, 2010 11:32 PM | Report abuse

if we as fans want this team to go further in the playoffs next year, we should be willing to accept less win and goal totals as long as they're are really serious about changing or tweaking their style to be better in the playoffs.

that means they won't be as exciting, might be even boring at times... we shoudn't complain if Ovi doesn't lead the world in goal scoring but should complain if he's lazy getting back to his zone, keeps turning the puck over, holds onto the puck too long or stays on the ice for over a minute.

even if they win, if they don't win the RIGHT way, we should let'em know we aren't happy about the way they've won... we should let'em know that we don't care if you lead the world in goal scoring, if you're not among top ten in defense and PK, we won't be happy about the team.

Posted by: joek443 | April 30, 2010 11:42 PM | Report abuse

"What tactical adjustments, exactly, would you have made to a regular-season super power play to do well in the playoffs?"

What specifically? less passing, more shooting, get people screening the goaltender, muck up the middle and have guys there to pick up the rebound. Stop looking for he "perfect shot" and just shoot. Get the goal out of position and tip it in. Need I go further?

In the 5-on-3 in game 6, they had what 2 shots? 3? In a minute and a half? Even my wife (who doesn't know much about hockey) commented "Why aren't they shooting? They're just passing the puck."

It's not damn rocket science. And it IS part of the system. It's arguably indicative of the failure of the entire system. Don't try to be all cute and say "what would you do?" I'd do what the Pens did tonight, to go 4 for 4, i.e. play playoff hockey.

"This was clearly a freak thing that devolved into extreme frustration and self-psyching-out over the course of this series"

It wasn't a "freak thing" though. That's what you people aren't getting. It's a pattern. Halak, Fleury, Lunqvuist, Biron. That's three years of very average goalies made to look like world beaters by a Caps team playing a sytem that doesn't work in the playoffs.

The fact that people like you insist on continually repeating this obviously wrong, excuse-making bullcrap in like of the abject dismantling the Pens put on the obviously inferior Habs team tonight really only makes me shake my head and wonder how much any of you really understand this game, and how long you have been fans for.

Posted by: VTDuffman | April 30, 2010 11:55 PM | Report abuse

@joek443

That's one of the dumbest things I've heard. Let the Caps know we're not happy about how they win? Talk about spoiled.

Think hard. Though it may be annoying to watch, does the fact that Ovie is slow back to his zone have anything to do with our losses in this series? We were up 3-1, and then we lost some games in which our defense was not really the problem. It was an offensive failure caused by individualistic, sloppy, and panicky play that led to a lot of non-threatening shots on Halak. Why is this turning into the same old stuff about defense and the Caps' supposedly irresponsible style? This wasn't about style -- this was about a lot of simple hockey mistakes.

Posted by: BigMogilny | April 30, 2010 11:58 PM | Report abuse

@VTDuffman

I really like the bandwagon attack at the end. Nice touch. (Not that it has anything to do with this, but I was at the 4-OT game against Pitt years back. Enough about that? Also, I'll be as cute as I want on the Internet.)

Anyway, the Caps never had problems putting the puck on net in the power play in the regular season. You and your wife are talking about adjustments from what you saw the Caps doing against Montreal this week, which certainly did not look like what they did in the regular season on the power play. Green didn't fan on his shots, and Knuble crashed the net like the best of them. I won't ask you again to tell me what real adjustments you'd make from the Caps' regular season PP, since you probably will give the same vague answer about "systems."

Posted by: BigMogilny | May 1, 2010 12:05 AM | Report abuse

"Think hard. Though it may be annoying to watch, does the fact that Ovie is slow back to his zone have anything to do with our losses in this series? We were up 3-1, and then we lost some games in which our defense was not really the problem. It was an offensive failure caused by individualistic, sloppy, and panicky play that led to a lot of non-threatening shots on Halak. Why is this turning into the same old stuff about defense and the Caps' supposedly irresponsible style? This wasn't about style -- this was about a lot of simple hockey mistakes."

---

Poor Defense allowed the Habs to take early leads. Once the early lead was established, they could sit back ond focus 100% on defense. MTL Scored first in 5 of 7 games in this Series.

But please, continue to lecture us all about how major defensive lapses had nothing do to with this teams Epic Collapse. It's hilarious.

Posted by: VTDuffman | May 1, 2010 12:06 AM | Report abuse

"I won't ask you again to tell me what real adjustments you'd make from the Caps' regular season PP, since you probably will give the same vague answer about "systems."

---

Vague Answers? Seriously, did you even read what I wrote? I gave very specific things they could have done. Re-read the post. Watch The Pens. It's so unbelievably clear I honestly can't understand why you are pretending like you don't get it.

So, you have a choice. Either address what I said, and proceed in the conversation like an adult who knows what they are talking about, or pretend like I didn't say anything and prove to everyone that you really have nothing to contribute here. The Choice is yours.

Posted by: VTDuffman | May 1, 2010 12:09 AM | Report abuse

everyone needs to keep in mind that BB's 'system' is run-n-gun. when it is not working - it would seem his 'adjustment' is to wait for it to come back. during the season this will eventually work as 'slumps' don't last forever. however - in the playoffs it only takes 4 losses to get knocked out. after game 5 BB decided to wait it out and hope for the best. at the very least they must add some options to their attack. when controlled zone entry isn't working they need to be able to dump and chase - this means they needs to practice it and USE it during the season. once mtl shut them down the only thing the players knew was to try harder. i think they put in the effort but with every failed result more frustration came and even their run-n-gun broke down.
imo they need to be willing to part with some scoring (and maybe salary) and look for a two-way 2nd center, a tough 1st or 2nd pair vet (playoff) dman and IF possible a more consistant vet goalie while varly and neuvy mature.
the team attitude of 'we expect to win' no matter how far behind we get needs to change to something more like 'we'll work as hard as we can' every game to win. this was the attitude they used to take the division after BB took over a last place team. they know they are good - i think they are losing perspective on how they got to where they are.
153 days to oct.

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | May 1, 2010 12:11 AM | Report abuse

@Capt

But it worked in the Regular Season! You seem to be saying that play is starkly different in the regular season than in the playoffs, and that things that work in the regular season don't necessarily work in the playoffs.

You are obviously wrong in this because the things that worked in the regular season worked *really* well. The fact that they didn't work (again) in the playoffs is obviously a fluke.

Halak is obviously a monster, I don't know if anyone is going to be able to get anything past him.

Posted by: VTDuffman | May 1, 2010 12:14 AM | Report abuse

@VTDuffman

Thanks for giving me The Choice. As I indicated in my previous post, I noticed that you said the Caps need to shoot more and pass less on the power play, and also muck up the middle and pressure the net. All things they did in the regular season and failed to do in the playoffs. It's not about "playoff" PP, it's about "good" PP, which they basically forgot this week.

Oh, and you should show your wife my posts -- I bet she'd think I'm cute.

Posted by: BigMogilny | May 1, 2010 12:15 AM | Report abuse

@ BigMogilny

let me explain something to you... if this failure isn't a clear proof that regular season wins don't mean very much if at all, I don't know what will make people like you understand.

you think any serious fans of this team will really care if they win 60 games next year?? if they're still 25th in PK and in the bottom half of the league in defense, most of us will say here we go again.

winning 50 games/year isn't good enough anymore, they gotta start winning games THE RIGHT WAY.

Posted by: joek443 | May 1, 2010 12:15 AM | Report abuse

VTDuffman:
i think i'm reading some sarcasm in your reponse - but i'm not sure

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | May 1, 2010 12:22 AM | Report abuse

"All things they did in the regular season and failed to do in the playoffs."

---

It's not really things they did in the regular season, though. What regular season did you watch? The vast majority of their PP goals came from set plays with an absurd amount of passing, practically drawn up on a board (likely drawn up on a board) and rehearsed until perfected. Like Capt said, when their carefully choreographed PP plays were taken away from them, they didn't know what to do because they lacked a fundamental knowledge of *how* to score on the PP, they just memorized the moves.

That said, if you honestly and truly think that the Caps spent the regular season getting gritty, in the goalie's face PP goals with solid screening and rebounds deflected into the net ala what led to the Pens' 4-for-4 performance on the PP tonight. I don't know what to tell you. I don't agree with that in the slightest, and question whether you honestly think that yourself.

Posted by: VTDuffman | May 1, 2010 12:26 AM | Report abuse

"When the Pens finish their sweep of the sorry Habs I hope they thank the Caps for losing to the Habs. This is like adding insult to injury."

The reality is the Pens have better defensemen and they are charging the net. When the Caps did that, they scored goals and then they just stopped doing it.

It really just seemed like the Caps were snake bitten on the PP.

I think you have to look at the coaching and the inability to adjust because the Caps never really did. The benefactors are Penguins, they sure aren't making the same mistakes that the Caps did now are they?

The Caps have too much talent to be taking every playoff series 7 games. The players are going to end up getting thier coach fired.

- Ray

Posted by: rmcazz | May 1, 2010 12:30 AM | Report abuse

Except for game 6, how the heck did the Habs dominate us?

Our offense didn't show up. PP didn't show up.
Had nothing to do with our defense.
When you put that many shots on goal & have won the puck possession game & get nothing to show for it of course you will lose.

How ppl expect the team to all of sudden change their style that is the antithesis of what is comfortable to them is beyond me.

Every other team gets to play their game but not us? We have to change?
Outrageous.
Kinda like Vietnam all over again...lets fight a war style like the enemy...something we know nothing about.
Guess what VC's 1 - US 0.

Let me repeat it to some of u who want to crucify this team - The game is about 1 thing:
They OUTSCORED us.
Not out strategized or outstyled us.

Posted by: Rocc00 | May 1, 2010 12:32 AM | Report abuse

"Poor Defense allowed the Habs to take early leads. Once the early lead was established, they could sit back ond focus 100% on defense. MTL Scored first in 5 of 7 games in this Series."

Agree 100%.

The Caps defense sucks. I also think all of those trades hurt them chemistry wise. BB was sitting healthy guys down nightly.

What they really needed to get was a solid defensman and GMGM never did. I think that should speak volumes that people were saying Carlson was thier best defensman. If that's the case, and yes he's going to be great, then that Caps really need to do something this offseason.

- Ray

Posted by: rmcazz | May 1, 2010 12:35 AM | Report abuse

"Let me repeat it to some of u who want to crucify this team - The game is about 1 thing:
They OUTSCORED us.
Not out strategized or outstyled us."

---

You realize that they outscored us *Because* they out strategized and out styled us right?

The difference between a championship team and a loser is that a championship team makes adjustments when what they have tried isn't working.

Do you follow football at all? When a team with a primarily-run based offense meets a team that stacks 8 and 9 defenders in the box to stop the run, what does that team do? Do they stubbornly insist on running the ball into that stacked defense over and over again only to throw their hands up in bewilderment and exlaim "Well, We tried!"

No, of course not, that would be silly. They pass the ball to take advantage of the new matchup their opponent has given them. When the opponent realizes what they are doing and adjusts to cover the pass, then they run the ball again like they used to.

The Caps refused to switch to a passing game when their opponent stacked the box. As a result, they lost.

Posted by: VTDuffman | May 1, 2010 12:39 AM | Report abuse

I sure hope the Pens continue to beat up on Halak and or Price. I said from the start Halak wasn't all that and that if a goalie can see the puck he can stop the puck, nothing super human Patrick Roy like about that.
Pens proved that tonight and will continue to prove that in this series.
Wonder what good old GMGM and coach BB have to say after seeing game 1 tonight?

Posted by: jotay131 | May 1, 2010 12:40 AM | Report abuse

"Had nothing to do with our defense."

I dunno on that one, in at least two games the Caps gave up like four goals in the first four shots.

Theo got pulled in game 1 for that very reason. Not hard to sit back and play defense when your up 2-0 in the first 10 minutes of every game.

- Ray

Posted by: rmcazz | May 1, 2010 12:40 AM | Report abuse

They OUTSCORED us.

Posted by: Rocc00 | May 1, 2010 12:32 AM

no doubt about it - they did
i would as if you only know one style of war and you keep getting killed - how long to you stick with it before you change your style? there are times when 'waiting' for your style to work is too late.
the caps must adopt some options to attacking teams because not all teams play the same style. if run-n-gun is getting you 4, 5 or 6 goals, then go go go. if it is getting you 2 goals over 2 games on nearly 100 shots - you better have options. i don't think the team was prepared enough to make even slight adjustments to try and kick start any kind of offense. the habs did in game 7 exactly what they did in games 5 and 6. the caps did exactly the same thing in game 7 as they did in 5 and 6. the results were 1 goal games and 3 losses. something must change - i don't know that is, i just hope GMGM and BB know

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | May 1, 2010 12:46 AM | Report abuse

Let me repeat it to some of u who want to crucify this team - The game is about 1 thing:
They OUTSCORED us.
Not out strategized or outstyled us.

Posted by: Rocc00 | May 1, 2010 12:32 AM | Report abuse

Gee, thanks for reminding us of that GENIUS... now you wanna explain to us how they got OUTSCORED in Games 1 and 7 when they only gave up 2 goals/game?

that wasn't SUPPOSED to the goal scoring machine like the Caps, was it?

Did you watch how easily the Pens picked apart that sorry team tonight?

Posted by: joek443 | May 1, 2010 12:53 AM | Report abuse

i would as ?!?!?!?
i would as = i would say

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | May 1, 2010 12:54 AM | Report abuse

that wasn't SUPPOSED to happen to the goal scoring machine like the Caps, was it?

Posted by: joek443 | May 1, 2010 12:55 AM | Report abuse

i would as !?!?
i would as = i would say

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | May 1, 2010 12:55 AM | Report abuse

@VTDuffman

No, they OUTSCORED us because we SCREWED UP A LOT AND MADE DUMB, PANICKY PLAYS in the last few games. Fanning on pucks left and right. Failing to lift the puck over Halak's pads (Chimera, Flash). Those aren't style issues, those are execution issues. The opportunities were there. Inexplicably weak passes from some the best passers in the regular season in the league. In those losses, the Caps didn't look remotely like the regular season Caps. They looked like a bunch of desperate individuals.

And I guarantee you that Montreal's plan was not to score early and then play 100% defense. No team wants to hunker down and play in their own zone for 95% of the game. They played great defense but were also extremely lucky that the Caps were unfocused at key moments, when goals opportunities were practically handed to them (another one: Semin's deflection that hit the crossbar).

Posted by: BigMogilny | May 1, 2010 12:59 AM | Report abuse

And I guarantee you that Montreal's plan was not to score early and then play 100% defense. No team wants to hunker down and play in their own zone for 95% of the game. They played great defense but were also extremely lucky that the Caps were unfocused at key moments, when goals opportunities were practically handed to them (another one: Semin's deflection that hit the crossbar).

Posted by: BigMogilny | May 1, 2010 12:59 AM | Report abuse

actually that's exactly how you beat a high powered offensive team in any sport... you score early or at least stay even as long as possible because you simply don't have enough firepower to match them goal by goal if they get into a high scoring contest.

the classic example is when the NY Giants beat the Bills in the SB and when the same Giants beat the 49ers in the NFC championship game that year. you shorten the games by keeping the possesion of the ball as long as possible even if you don't score and you wait for a couple breaks in the 4th quarter. that's exactly what happened.

Posted by: joek443 | May 1, 2010 1:22 AM | Report abuse

the Habs scored first in 5 of 7 games in the series and won 4 outta the 5... the only game they lost when scoring first was Game 2 when the Caps came back from 3 goals down late in the second.

so the team that scored first won 6 outta 7 in the series... that's one of the main differences between playoff hockey and regular season hockey. Much harder to come from behind every game because you face better teams that know how to protect a lead.

Posted by: joek443 | May 1, 2010 1:42 AM | Report abuse

"Wild card? Because the Pens did not win their division.

Then what would you call the Habs? Bottom dwellers?

The Caps had a chance to take that gift.
But it was returned. Address unknown."

Another dumb statement. The Caps playing the Habs was not a "gift". It was earned by being the best team in the regular season. If the Pens get to the Finals without having to play any of the the top seeds, that is just lucky for them.

Posted by: rphilli721 | May 1, 2010 2:39 AM | Report abuse

For all you goofballs who are pointing to the first game of the Pens series as some sort of release of your frustration, the Habs were exhausted. They didn't play anywhere near the way they played against us. A gift from the Caps to the Pens. Will Pitt still take the Habs out? Absolutely. You can't play with a tilted ice and hope all the bounces and luck go your way. Plus, try getting to the SC Finals by blocking 30+ shots a game. It won them one series luckily, but just as easily could have and probably should have gotten them an earlier exit.

We gave the most important games away in a 7 game series. Games 1 and 5 and they were at home nonetheless. The team simply underestimated the Habs and paid for it dearly when fate and luck started to go the Habs way. Pitt, like the experienced championship team they are, doesn't give lesser teams that glimmer of hope. Again, you don't make drastic changes to a team that won the President's Cup easily and outscored the rest of the NHL by a mile.

If they don't take these lessons and make progress in the playoffs next season, then you have to start making more drastic moves like firing BB etc....

Posted by: rphilli721 | May 1, 2010 2:54 AM | Report abuse

really dont understand how any Caps fan is still watching the playoffs right now. Maybe in a week or two, but too distraught at this point to catch a game. been nearly 20 years since D.C. captured a title. Terps won in 2002, but professionally, its been a while.

Posted by: saltine182 | May 1, 2010 3:16 AM | Report abuse

"the classic example is when the NY Giants beat the Bills in the SB and when the same Giants beat the 49ers in the NFC championship game that year. you shorten the games by keeping the possesion of the ball as long as possible even if you don't score and you wait for a couple breaks in the 4th quarter. that's exactly what happened."

You kill your own argument. The Habs almost never had possession of the puck. For all but about 2 periods the whole series, the Habs were playing on a tilted ice. Yeah, they took advantage of some of our idiotic defensive breakdowns, but besides being defensively disciplined they were very lucky. One of their players was quoted as saying just that.

Posted by: rphilli721 | May 1, 2010 3:19 AM | Report abuse

By the way, if the Caps played most of the series with 1/10th of the desperation they displayed the last 3 mins of game 7, the Habs would have been swept. Which just reinforces my theory that the Caps simply underestimated their opponent and it blew up in their face. What is at the core of this problem? I believe it's partly due to the arrogance of their captain Mr. Ovechkin and partly due to a coach who seems to not be able to impart the correct motivation with this team at crucial times.

Posted by: rphilli721 | May 1, 2010 3:42 AM | Report abuse

This sounds really simple but I feel like people are failing to point it out:
Watch ANY OTHER TEAMS POWER PLAY, and you notice something much different than the Cap's PP. I have noticed this for 3 years. First of all, I realize we were number 1 this year. But I still felt this way watching center ice and our opponent's power plays. First of all, we usually don't set it up the first minute of the PP. We are chasing the puck in our zone (green) and we look lost trying to take it into the zone.
Most importantly,
When you watch the Pens PP tonight, LOOK HOW THEY CREATE SPACE AT THE POINT. Gonchar, Letang, etc etc have miles in front of them to tee up a shot. The Caps NEVER HAVE THEIR POINT MENT PREPARED TO SHOOT.
Did you watch the 5 on 3 in game 6? Green and ovie had NO IDEA WHAT THEY WERE DOING AT THE POINT. Twice, they ran into eachother. THEY ARE NEVER SET TO TEE A SLAP SHOT. Remember Gonchar to Bondra one-timers? THAT NEVER HAPPENS WITH US. Ovie is never set to shoot from the point. Corvo's shots from the point in game 7 would hit the body 2 inches in front of him and deflect back out of the zone.
I am not Barry Melrose: I Can't explain this. Watching the Pens first pp tonight, My dad and I were freaking out. all of a sudden, the habs weren't pressuring and the Penguins were creating miles of space for themselves. WHO CAN EXPLAIN THIS????????

Posted by: Leeale | May 1, 2010 3:55 AM | Report abuse

really dont understand how any Caps fan is still watching the playoffs right now. Maybe in a week or two, but too distraught at this point to catch a game. been nearly 20 years since D.C. captured a title. Terps won in 2002, but professionally, its been a while.

Posted by: saltine182

I'm watching out of curiosity and to see how "hot" Halak actually is, or if its something else. it looks like the latter. If you're a caps fan, you ought to be a hockey fan too.

Posted by: LloydChristmas | May 1, 2010 6:53 AM | Report abuse

@Lloyd,

My sentiments entirely. I was stunned by how the Caps didn't adapt to overcome what the Habs were doing. Leonsis nailed it when he said they played with a low hockey IQ. It was mental more than anything. Last night was only one game we'll see what happens.

Posted by: FloridaCapsFan | May 1, 2010 6:59 AM | Report abuse

Way too much negativity here. I'm with everybody but give it a rest. If you watch the Pens game notice that MTL is giving them all kinds of room at the point and trying to take away the half boards and down low. Against the Vaps the pressured the point. What it amounts to is poor game planning by Martin for the Pens. He is worried about Crosby and Malkin low and letting Gin har and Goligoski fire away. Don't forget the Habs also just lost their best defenseman. That will be a huge difference in this series.

The Caps lost to another hot goalie. It is par for the course in the playoffs. If your goaltenders are outplayed you can't win a series.

Posted by: DisgustedinArlington | May 1, 2010 8:08 AM | Report abuse

The Caps made Halak hot. Th penguins move the puck much better than the caps. It is gonna be a long year for the Caps and Caps fans. OV especially. He is gonna have to hear how much better Crosby is until the playoffs start next year. And everybody who takes a shot at the Caps and OV will be right, they blew it. 3 to 1 against not the 8 seed, but really the 16 seed.

Posted by: underpants2 | May 1, 2010 8:11 AM | Report abuse

You kill your own argument. The Habs almost never had possession of the puck. For all but about 2 periods the whole series, the Habs were playing on a tilted ice. Yeah, they took advantage of some of our idiotic defensive breakdowns, but besides being defensively disciplined they were very lucky. One of their players was quoted as saying just that.

Posted by: rphilli721 | May 1, 2010 3:19 AM | Report abuse

that's football, this is hockey... the Caps had 4 home games in this series and Montreal had a lead or was even in EVERY minute of those 4 games but a few. The Caps ONLY led for about 7 minutes in 4 home games in this series.

that would be 7 minutes outta 254 minutes on their home ice the Caps had a lead in this series... I would say that's better than keeping possesion the ball in football if you're Montreal, wouldn't you?

NO wonder they lost 3 outta 4 home games in this series and under BB they're only 7-9 at VC in the playoffs. You create your own luck in any sport by being smart and disciplined. The perfect example of that is the stupid penalty Green took towards the end of the first period in Game 7.

A bad habit like that isn't created overnight, it's been there all year. Because they were winning, few people gave a darn about it, including the coach. That's the price you pay for not playing the game THE RIGHT WAY. it will bite you at the worst possible moment.

Posted by: joek443 | May 1, 2010 8:22 AM | Report abuse

really dont understand how any Caps fan is still watching the playoffs right now. Maybe in a week or two, but too distraught at this point to catch a game. been nearly 20 years since D.C. captured a title. Terps won in 2002, but professionally, its been a while.

Posted by: saltine182

I'll probably be only watching this MTL/PIT series and that's it. I tried to watch Red Wings/Sharks the other night but I just couldn't. It just wasn't fun watching others team compete for the Cup when the Caps are sitting at home, searching for answers. I'm solely watching the PIT series to see how PIT plays MTL and how Halak looks compared to how we played them. Through one game the Pens are already making MTL look like CRAP and us look like fools. It's sickening.

Posted by: rachel216 | May 1, 2010 8:23 AM | Report abuse

The Caps lost to another hot goalie. It is par for the course in the playoffs. If your goaltenders are outplayed you can't win a series.

Posted by: DisgustedinArlington

I still don't believe this. He wasn't hot, we made him look unbelievable. See, he wasn't so hot last night right? Cuz he faced a bunch of shots he couldn't see.

Posted by: rachel216 | May 1, 2010 8:26 AM | Report abuse

First off, it would be stupid not to get rid of both GMGM and BB. They screwed up big time this year and we can't keep having these same excuses year in and year out or we wont ever win a stanley cup.

Secondly, I think we need to sign Belanger back. He did a great job in the faceoff circle and give him another year here and I think he will do great for us. He was a great trade addition just like Chimera was.

Posted by: capsfan5252 | May 1, 2010 8:36 AM | Report abuse

Well gang,

This series is a hard one to recover from -- to say the least. One could actually come to the following conclusion: if you ever want to make big money, wait for a situation when things look really rosy for the Caps; i.e. when they have a 3 game to 1 playoff edge, and bet AGAINST them. That would have happened this year, if you had bet on Montreal prior to the start of the playoffs and even more so after the Caps had gotten a 3 game to 1 edge in games.

Of course, I could never bet against my favorite team. Which is why I'll never make big money.

Posted by: CapsFan75 | May 1, 2010 9:40 AM | Report abuse

Walker should have been in for game 5. The Ovie quotes piss me off. He obviously does not get it. I strongly question whether he has the character to be the team captain. Does he just assume that he and the rest of the trashy, gold chain wearing Russian mafia are just going to be handed gold medals and the Stanley Cup on a platter? Please!!! You sound like a massive A-hole, Ovie. Shut you trap.

Posted by: doughless | May 1, 2010 9:54 AM | Report abuse

Gotta agree with you doughless. To hear the Captain of your team say "But when you get the lead 3-1, you feel like maybe they're going to give up and we're going to win easy game and be ready for next round," is pretty disheartening. If anyone knows 3-1 leads aren't safe, it's the Caps. They've come back from 3-1 leads twice under BB. I would think they wouldn't take anything for granted. That quote shows me this team hasn't matured yet. To think the other team will just "give up" because they're down 3-1 is crap. I think Brian Engblom from Versus said it the best: "Montreal's will to win was stronger than Washington's."

Posted by: rachel216 | May 1, 2010 10:02 AM | Report abuse

@rachel216

Caps blowing a 3-1 lead again. It must be MY fault. I have a propensity for rooting for teams who do that. And I had that propensity for doing that BEFORE the Caps ever existed. The 1968 Cardinals.

(Then I ended up watching the 1979 Orioles and 1985 Cardinals do that as well.)

Posted by: CapsFan75 | May 1, 2010 10:06 AM | Report abuse

Can someone explain why we were having "optional" practices when our power play was so horrible? And then explain why the leaders are actually not showing up for these "optional" practices. How do you correct the power play when those who are on it, are not even at practice?? WTH!!

Posted by: scottm | May 1, 2010 10:13 AM | Report abuse

there shouldn't be any "optional" practices... either have a practice or don't have one.

it's like all those "voluntary" minicamps in football... equally stupid.

Posted by: joek443 | May 1, 2010 10:21 AM | Report abuse

"Of course, I could never bet against my favorite team. Which is why I'll never make big money.

Posted by: CapsFan75 |"

And it's also what makes you a true fan,CapsFan75.

There isn't a true Caps fan who isn't extrememly unhappy with the outcome of this series. It will take time for the bitterness to abate, but I'm getting really tired of reading all the dire predictions and the "off with their heads" comments.

Also, I don't understand evtoi's belief that the Penguins would have had no trouble beating the Caps. Didn't the Caps sweep the Penguins in the regular season? And against MTL, Caps won 2, lost 1, and one game went to OT (didn't the Caps lose that one?)

Psychologically, I think the Caps would have had an advantage over Pittsburgh.

Saddest words of verse or pen: oh, that it might have been.

Time to take some deep, deep breaths, let the team management figure out how to approach next year, and be ready to rock the red next year.

Posted by: dccitizen1 | May 1, 2010 10:23 AM | Report abuse

CapsFan75: No it certainly wasn't your fault.

scottm: I guess that's just the way they roll... also when they did have practice and supposedly were working real hard on the PP as Tarik reported, it clearly had no effect or they didn't practice enough because it was 3% effective.

Posted by: rachel216 | May 1, 2010 10:26 AM | Report abuse

we shouldn't even talk about how the Caps would match up against the Pens or any other team till they learn to finish off a team without going to full 7 games.

they simply haven't earned the right to be compared to a team like the Pens or the Red Wings at this point. At least get outta the 2nd round first.

Posted by: joek443 | May 1, 2010 10:33 AM | Report abuse

I think it was a mistake to pull Theo in this series. He was ready and he was key for the Caps in the long winning streak and the success this season. I remember one game in particular -- the Red Wings where the Caps were clearly outplayed but ended up winning 3-2.

I don't really think Halak was the factor that beat us. I think it was lack of physical play, lack of team work, poor shot selection/execution, and poor coaching.

I hope that the management and coaching staff learn something from their mistakes and from this Pens-Habs series. Make the necessary changes to prevent another unsuccessful Stanley Cup bid. Exchange your non-physical players for physical players that are hungry and show up every night for 60 minutes. Teach OV how to handle the puck or else make him start dumping it in. He is not the only player on the team and by shouldering the entire burden upon himself, he contributed to the collapse of this team.

Good luck GM and BB and players. Even the angry fans are behind you and will be back next year. But please make those necessary changes.

Posted by: evtoi | May 1, 2010 11:04 AM | Report abuse

Caps need to cut bait with any ufa on this team. They need to get on the horn with Forsbergs agent, bring him in. Also, bring in the two young swedes. This team can afford to let rookies play, and still make the playoffs. Forsberg on a line with Laich and Fehr would be nice.

Move Semin, Flash, bring in some d help. And Perrault should be 3rd line center. We don't need 120 points next year, 100 will win the division.

Belanger doesn't fit on the team. He is not a second liner, and Perrault should play 3rd.

Posted by: underpants2 | May 1, 2010 11:28 AM | Report abuse

The refrain from the players of "we needed to do what we did all season, but for some reason we just couldn't" is worrisome. As everyone else in the NHL seems to know, the playoffs are different from the regular season. Hopefully, "just do what you did all season" wasn't what BB was telling the team in the locker room.

Posted by: bbposter09 | May 1, 2010 11:32 AM | Report abuse

Forsberg again, huh... while you're at it, why not give Eric Lindros a call as well?

Forsberg sure looked great at the Olympics, didn't he??

Seriously tho, someone mentioned trading for Mike Fisher yesterday and that sounds a LOT better than giving these cripples another shot.

Posted by: joek443 | May 1, 2010 11:37 AM | Report abuse

Belanger doesn't fit on the team. He is not a second liner, and Perrault should play 3rd.

Posted by: underpants2 | May 1, 2010 11:28 AM | Report abuse

Belenger would be fine as a 3rd line center... he was one of the few players who seemed to give a darn about winning and he's also good at PK, something this team desperately needs.

the problem was that he was misused because they don't have a legit 2nd line center. If they had a guy like Fisher, he wouldn't have to play that role.

Posted by: joek443 | May 1, 2010 11:43 AM | Report abuse

@dccitizen1

Great post as always.

I do think Montreal was a tougher matchup than even Pittsburgh would have been. (And Ottawa or NJ would have been tough for us to beat as well.)

Yes, "what might have been" are the saddest of words. And, for me as a Caps fan, I've followed the team for the entire history, except for their very first year. I started going to games in 1975 and would go to several a year. My game going fell off when the kids were born and I became more involved in their activities. But now they're grown and I now have season tickets. The Caps are now the age of my kids, with the "young guns" the age of my elder and with John Carlson only a year older than my younger.

Right now I feel about as bad as I would if my kids failed at something important.

Posted by: CapsFan75 | May 1, 2010 11:53 AM | Report abuse

Also, I don't understand evtoi's belief that the Penguins would have had no trouble beating the Caps. Didn't the Caps sweep the Penguins in the regular season? And against MTL, Caps won 2, lost 1, and one game went to OT (didn't the Caps lose that one?)

Psychologically, I think the Caps would have had an advantage over Pittsburgh.

Saddest words of verse or pen: oh, that it might have been.

Time to take some deep, deep breaths, let the team management figure out how to approach next year, and be ready to rock the red next year.

Posted by: dccitizen1

Didn't the Caps win the President's cup? Not very relevant when you get beat by the 8th seed in the playoffs in the first round after a 3 to 1 game lead.

The Pens play as a team and the Caps do not. The caps refuse to battle along the boards. Instead OV and Semin are looking to beat a defender to make a goal. That worked like magic during the regular season, but it does not and will not work during the playoffs. Other teams have OV and the team figured out. The Pens would probably sweep the Caps in a playoff series. Talent wise the two teams are equal. The Pens play a physical and smart game and are able to adjust to several styles of play. Playing during the regular season where you are always moving on to a different team is completely different than squaring off against the same team four to seven games in a row. The reason I said what I said is because the Caps strategy during the playoffs in not effective and because the Pens are that much better as a team than the Caps. The Pens are showing composure, teamwork, hard physical play for 60 minutes. The Caps peppered the goalie and shot blockers with desperate shots but did not wear down the Habs or adjust.

The Caps were 1/33 on the power play. The Pens are 4/4 against the same team. That reason alone would give the Pens a "sweeping" advantage against the Caps.

I'm not a Pens fan, but I now have much more respect for their team and much less respect for the Caps because the Caps did not show character and admit the problems that caused them to blow a 3-1 lead. They give all the credit to Halak. Complete garbage.

Posted by: evtoi | May 1, 2010 11:57 AM | Report abuse

Mike Green to Ottawa for Mike Fisher plus draft pick(s)... how about it?

Posted by: joek443 | May 1, 2010 12:02 PM | Report abuse

Why in the world would ottawa trade Mike Fisher, their future captain? Ottawa has Karlsson as their pp point man, they do not need Mike Green. The only center Ottawa would trade is Spezza. Plus, Fisher is banging Carrie Underwood, more reason to keep him.

Forsberg costs you nothing, plus, he can mentor Backs, Gustafson and Johanson. Detroit has built their team around swedes, why can we.

Belanger has ZERO offensive upside. Also, he did nothing to help the penalty kill.

Posted by: underpants2 | May 1, 2010 12:07 PM | Report abuse

Thanks, CapsFan75. I know what you mean about the players being the age of our kids and feeling just as bad as if our kids had failed at this.

Look, evotoi, I do appreciate your dissection of what you think might have happened if it had gone to a Caps/Pens round. Hindsight is 20/20, and there's no way to definitively prove or disprove your sense of what would have happened in that hypothetical series.

I think the Caps panicked and that's really a shame. They tightened up their grips and let the psychology get to them. When I golf, if I get tense and frustrated like that, there's no way I can make a shot. I think it's easier, psychologically speaking, when you're the underdog to play your best, and that sort of panic and tension infected the whole team. I'm sincere when I say they need a sports psychologist as well as more open-minded coaching. Not that I want the coach replaced, just one that learns from this debacle.

Posted by: dccitizen1 | May 1, 2010 12:08 PM | Report abuse

Pens take a huge hit: Jordan Staal, depending on the healing process, may be out for the rest of season.

A tendon in his right foot was sliced by a skate.

Posted by: MyPostIDisAfake | May 1, 2010 12:08 PM | Report abuse

hey if Janet Jones can force a trade for her hubby Gretzky to be in the US of A, why can't Carrie Underwood?? LOL

Posted by: joek443 | May 1, 2010 12:10 PM | Report abuse

and Fisher will be in the final year of his contract next year... if Bryan Murray felt that they woudn't be able to sign him to a new deal or his fiance wouldn't let him go back to Ottawa, who knows? he might be on the trading block

Posted by: joek443 | May 1, 2010 12:20 PM | Report abuse

If they did get Carrie Underwood, I mean Mike Fisher, would make going to games a lot more fun.

Posted by: underpants2 | May 1, 2010 12:22 PM | Report abuse

@dccitizen1

You're not the only person who felt the Caps "tighted up". Sergei Fedorov agrees with you and thinks that was Semin's problem. (See Puck Daddy article).

BTW, do you have kids that are the age of the current group of Caps?

(Note on my kids, my younger daughter seems to be having one of those "Can't buy an A" sort of semesters in college.)

Posted by: CapsFan75 | May 1, 2010 12:26 PM | Report abuse

Hi CapsFan75, yes, I have a daughter age 24 and a son who is 17 (the son plays hockey as a defenseman, and so I'm probably kinder to Greenie than many people because of that.)

I wish we would hear from Tominfl1/arizona.

Posted by: dccitizen1 | May 1, 2010 1:14 PM | Report abuse

1) Never pay any attention to "Cheef". He is a grade A you-know-what.

2) Mike Green needs to be moved off of the Blue line. Either make him a forward or trade him. He is NOT a defenseman (see Carlson, Shultz, Poti for examples)

3) Something I have read from a lot of other boards that I am really starting to agree with - Ovechekin's lack of back checking. All the forwards, as a whole, need to start back checking with a LOT more regularity.

Last comment is this - BB, IMHO, REALLY screwed us in the playoffs when he pulled Theo and went with Varly. Varly sucked in game's 6+7 (especially the 3rd goal in game 7). Theo would have given us a much, much better chance. I think he also would have given the entire team a lift, knowing that their buddy and best goalie was in net.

Posted by: Snowdog | May 1, 2010 2:26 PM | Report abuse

I played goalie as a youth and was pretty darn good so i can critique our goalie situation.First,theo never should of been pulled.He had a couple hiccups but you just dont loose complete focus on a couple bad goals.ecspecially a nhl level goalie.BB never gave theo a chance.What happened to a longer leash he was gonna be givin.Game one wasnt his fault.We just couldnt score.And game two,yea he let in 2 quick ones but didnt varly let in two quick ones in the next two games.maybe not back to back shots but close.Bottom line is BB totally was out coached and should take blame for that.Not that we ran into a hot goalie cause next game halak let in 6 against pit.So that excuse sucks.take blame and do what it takes to fix this in the off season.more will than skill.GO CAPS

Posted by: gratefuldid | May 1, 2010 2:33 PM | Report abuse

it was Varly's fault, oh wait BB was outcoached.. no wait Theo would have saved us...

you people are all over the place and


@ Snowdog

they only gave up 2 goals in Game 7 so there was NO 3rd goal given up by Varly.

it's just idiotic to blame your goalie for anything when the highest scoring team on the planet, YOUR Washington Capitals managed to score ONE lousy goal/game in the last 3 games of the series.

did you all see how easily the Pens picked apart Halak and the Habs defense last night? 4 for 4 on the PP, how easy was that??????

Posted by: joek443 | May 1, 2010 3:09 PM | Report abuse

NOT only did they manage to score just one goal/game in Games 5-7, two of those games (6 & 7) they had to wait till the last few minutes of the games for their lone goal. So they almost got SHUTOUT in the last two games of the series.

And some of you wanna blame Varly for what, not coming up with a shutout??

Posted by: joek443 | May 1, 2010 3:24 PM | Report abuse

All this talk about BB and his system costing us is way overblown. Did we lose games because we were trying to score too much and were giving up a lot of goals? No we weren't. If that was the case then I could agree that is was BB and the system but that isn't what happened. Second there are people taking about how we lost because we weren't physical yet we out hit the Habs in the 7 games we played them. The key to the series was blocked shots and Halak. Yes, Halak won them this series. Yes, he played bad in game one against the Pens but that really has nothing to do with how he played against the Caps. In the last three games, especially the last two, he was the best goalie in the league. The other key was blocked shots, and that is not on the coach that is one the players. They have to change the shooting angle and stop hitting legs and bodies when they put pucks on net.

The only thing you can really fault BB for is the PP and a lot of that was the players not doing what made them sucessful during the season. When we had good power plays in the regular season guys were moving and using give and gos a lot and we got away from that in the playoffs but that is about it. Our PK was 8th in the playoffs which is much better then it was in the regular season but is not the reason why we lost. In fact the two worst PKs are Vancouver and the Pens both in the second round. We also were the only team to get 2 short handed goals. In fact our PK only gave up 4 more goals then it scored. When you think about that it is clear that the PK and defense were not the issue which would have been true if BB and his system were to blame for the loss. Also many of the defense first teams are already out NJ, Nashville, Buffalo, and Phoenix all rely on D and goaltending and are all out and the teams that are more high-scoring Detroit, Pittsburgh, SJ, and Chicago are all still in the playoffs and unless Vancouver (who is fairly high scoring in their own right) makes the final from the West at least one finalist will be a more offensive team.

Yes this playoff was a disappointment but it is no reason to blow up this team again. Last year we were one bad game away from the East Final and this season we ran up against a goalie that when hot carried a team just like he did for the Slovaks in the Olympics. He beat Sweden and Russia and almost took down Canada and Finland all of whom had better teams then Slovakia but he lead them to their best finsh ever.

Posted by: icehammer97 | May 1, 2010 3:24 PM | Report abuse

All this talk about BB and his system costing us is way overblown. Did we lose games because we were trying to score too much and were giving up a lot of goals? No we weren't. If that was the case then I could agree that is was BB and the system but that isn't what happened. Second there are people taking about how we lost because we weren't physical yet we out hit the Habs in the 7 games we played them. The key to the series was blocked shots and Halak. Yes, Halak won them this series. Yes, he played bad in game one against the Pens but that really has nothing to do with how he played against the Caps. In the last three games, especially the last two, he was the best goalie in the league. The other key was blocked shots, and that is not on the coach that is one the players. They have to change the shooting angle and stop hitting legs and bodies when they put pucks on net.

The only thing you can really fault BB for is the PP and a lot of that was the players not doing what made them sucessful during the season. When we had good power plays in the regular season guys were moving and using give and gos a lot and we got away from that in the playoffs but that is about it. Our PK was 8th in the playoffs which is much better then it was in the regular season but is not the reason why we lost. In fact the two worst PKs are Vancouver and the Pens both in the second round. We also were the only team to get 2 short handed goals. In fact our PK only gave up 4 more goals then it scored. When you think about that it is clear that the PK and defense were not the issue which would have been true if BB and his system were to blame for the loss. Also many of the defense first teams are already out NJ, Nashville, Buffalo, and Phoenix all rely on D and goaltending and are all out and the teams that are more high-scoring Detroit, Pittsburgh, SJ, and Chicago are all still in the playoffs and unless Vancouver (who is fairly high scoring in their own right) makes the final from the West at least one finalist will be a more offensive team.

Yes this playoff was a disappointment but it is no reason to blow up this team again. Last year we were one bad game away from the East Final and this season we ran up against a goalie that when hot carried a team just like he did for the Slovaks in the Olympics. He beat Sweden and Russia and almost took down Canada and Finland all of whom had better teams then Slovakia but he lead them to their best finsh ever.

Posted by: icehammer97 | May 1, 2010 3:25 PM | Report abuse

good post icehammer97

Posted by: dccitizen1 | May 1, 2010 3:46 PM | Report abuse

Bruins just beat the Flyers in 1 OT. I'm glad about that.

There's a horse in the Derby named "Sidney's Candy". Ugh. I hope that horse comes in last!

Posted by: dccitizen1 | May 1, 2010 3:48 PM | Report abuse

@ icehammer97

I don't think anyone is saying the Caps should be turned into a defense first team. I think what most of us are asking for is better BALANCE.

I would rather have this team score 50 goals less next year and become a top ten defensive team. that would be a team with better balance and better suited for the playoffs.

no matter how good Halak was, there is absolutely no excuse for this team to score just 3 goals in the last 3 games of the series. if this team works as hard as the Bruins, they would be almost unbeatable.

BTW how fitting it is for Marc Savard to score the GWG in OT in his first game back after two months off, that was so nice to see...

Posted by: joek443 | May 1, 2010 3:58 PM | Report abuse

@dccitizen1

Sounds like your kids are almost exactly a year or so younger than mine.

My first born turned 25 on Feb 20, exactly 10 years after Brendan Witt. (If the astrologers are right, she's similar to Alex Semin.) They both have been accused of being unfocused at times. She is more extroverted.

My second born just turned 19 last week and just finished her freshman year of college.

When did your daughter turn 24 (or does she turn 25 soon)?

I assume Tom in Fla is busy moving to CA.

Posted by: CapsFan75 | May 1, 2010 4:11 PM | Report abuse

we lost 2-1 because of 50 blocked shots...and those 50 blocked shot are because ov semin and our forwards just shot as soon as they crossed the blue line....2 goals against doesnt mean the system is wrong just that the guys paid to score choked and forgot about going to the net and winning the battle along the offensive wall

Posted by: wendel2 | May 1, 2010 6:07 PM | Report abuse

Hey CapsFan75, shoot me an email at sullyterp@gmail.com if you don't mind. thanks

Posted by: dccitizen1 | May 1, 2010 6:14 PM | Report abuse

Anyone find it disconcerting that MGreen wouldnt speak to media? I mean come on man up and take responsibility like Backs and Ov. Like his character wasnt already in doubt after the past 2 post seasons,this just reinforces it. Should definitely pay a visit to sports psychologist this summer to deal with this Rick Ankiel like meltdown. Or maybe just change positions altogether. Worked for Rick.

As for Semin...as BB always says,expect a little you get a lot, expect a lot you get very little. Dont know who could take his cap hit but Florida is always looking for scoring and Nathan Horton would look awfully good as caps 2nd line center.

Would love to see additions of Volchenkov and Seidenberg here next year..would get the PK in order and are terrific shutdown guys and shot blockers.Would get Greener off pk as well.

In all that 14 game win streak was a ton of fun but was strangely counter productive in the end. They built such a big lead they became highly complacent towards the end of the year (especially in first periods) and BB became seduced by the Flash centered 2nd line. He was miscast and should of been scrathced by game six.Hindsight 20/20 but i thought Walker played the right way in game 7. Forechecked,cycled the puck and played resposible in limited time.

Should be an interesting summer..blow up wont happen but after this absolute debacle, a couple of significant moves will be made. Looking forward.

Posted by: Todgak | May 1, 2010 7:17 PM | Report abuse

I know over half of this fan base hates Green right now, but I wouldn't trade him.
Semin is a completely different story on the other hand.

And Mike Fisher is not the kind of guy I would want playing for the Caps. Keep Green.

How long will it be before Caps-Kovalchuk rumors start appearing?

Posted by: hockeynightincanada | May 1, 2010 9:14 PM | Report abuse

The bottom line is that the Caps didn't play like a team in the neutral and offensive zone. There was no hot goalie or incredible Montreal defense. Montreal had no individual efforts going on. Montreal played more like a team than the Caps and that's really it.

Posted by: LloydChristmas | May 1, 2010 9:49 PM | Report abuse

canucks are crushing the blackhawks 5-0 after 2

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | May 1, 2010 10:02 PM | Report abuse

What frustrates me most is not the loss - but the fact that we have played the maximum number of playoff games over 4 playoff series, and had home ice advantage for every one!

The Caps are that good that other teams can't dominate them, but not good enough to shut the door themselves.

On the season that Olympic break was a bad turning point. The 14 game winning streak made them feel invincible despite a roulette style of attack. They did play as a team back then when they fed off the emotion of a winning streak.

After the Olympics the weird line combos cost the team one goal for per game.

I sure wish we had one more goal per game against Montreal in the playoffs.

For that last part I blame the coaching staff - but thats just my observation.

Posted by: yesisaiditfirst | May 1, 2010 10:05 PM | Report abuse

canucks are crushing the blackhawks 5-0 after 2

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | May 1, 2010 10:02 PM | Report abuse

***************************************

Chicago is a more talented team, but their youth is showing - they are a very young group ...lets see if they regain composure for game 2.

I am beginning to think the Sharks (a veteran team) will win this year and thats great for the Caps because its "inspiration"..........

Posted by: yesisaiditfirst | May 1, 2010 10:10 PM | Report abuse

Chicago is a more talented team, but their youth is showing - they are a very young group ...lets see if they regain composure for game 2.

I am beginning to think the Sharks (a veteran team) will win this year and thats great for the Caps because its "inspiration"..........

Posted by: yesisaiditfirst | May 1, 2010 10:10 PM | Report abuse

More talented in every position except for goalie where they are horrible. Also the Nuks have a top line that is at least as good if not better with the Sedins and whoever is lucky enough to be on that line.

Posted by: icehammer97 | May 1, 2010 11:54 PM | Report abuse

i just got a chance to see that hit Cooke put on Markov, wow! I don't think the caps laid a hit like that all series. Great hit. And clean to boot. Thats how you punish an opponent. I don't expect the Pens to let up one bit. They'll probably close them out in 5 max. Too bad we let Cooke. He was one of the few players we had who went 100mph on every shift and kept the other team on its toes. No surprise that he's a huge part of the Pens. Him and Kunitz are like pitbulls on the ice. Relentless

Posted by: cstanton1 | May 2, 2010 2:13 AM | Report abuse

Latest buzz from around the NHL
May, 1, 2010May 19:46PM ET
By Pierre LeBrun

Eyebrows were raised this week, however, by a post in Caps owner Ted Leonsis' blog. This particular passage sent tongues wagging around the hockey world:

"[The Habs] played committed team defense. They took our stars out of play all series. I believe our hockey IQ seemed low this series and we didn't adjust well on the ice to the new schemes coming our way."

Immediately, people thought Leonsis was throwing Boudreau under the bus. Not so, the Caps owner told ESPN.com in an e-mail Saturday.

"You read too much into my blog posts, we lost for a million reasons, not because of our coach," Leonsis wrote in response to my e-mail query.

Posted by: joek443 | May 2, 2010 11:01 AM | Report abuse

was Leonsis speaking in Chinese?? what he said seems pretty clear and jives with what a lot of people have said on here since the defeat...

Posted by: joek443 | May 2, 2010 11:07 AM | Report abuse

I think BB is here the next year and beyond.

Excuse two years ago - young team, refs screwed us, stupid Poti penalty, Emminger must go.

Result - Emminger traded

Excuse last year - Feds too old, Nylander contract and Pothier being cleared would not let us get what we needed.

Result - Feds not resigned, Pothier traded, Nylander "Nylandered". Knuble, Morrison, and more BB guys to the rescue.

Excuse this year - Semin won't play the system and won't pay the price, PK bad, Mike Green young, Semin taking Flash's spot.

Result?- Semin traded for a few more BB guys, Evason replaced with John Anderson, 2nd line is Flash-Backstrom-Laich. Belanger or new BB guy plays on top line with OVi.

Excuse next year? - Varly/Neuvy had to have those goals, Backstrom isn't playing the system and on and on until.....

Result- Ovechkin is traded and we have the 2006 Hershey Bears (with a few other BB guys to fill out the roster).

My questions:

1) If Semin/Green wouldn't play the system and weren't working hard enough, why weren't they benched? The team had enough depth. The season was on the line! Why not go with guys who could get the job done?

2) If lines 3 and 4 were playing the right way, why did you use Ovi-Backs-Knuble every other shift in the 3rd period? Why did Semin and Green get any ice time in the 3rd?

Of course those questions will never get answered. They will make a few changes to quench the fans blood lust and we will start anew in October.

Posted by: ablake70 | May 2, 2010 12:34 PM | Report abuse

What! No news or rumors? Don't tell me that we have to wait until September for news! What is the next likely news splash? Is there a date when free agents will become available? When will Theo's contract end? This is killing me.

Posted by: caraveli | May 2, 2010 2:32 PM | Report abuse

Pens crash the net, move the puck, move their feet constantly, AND they play as a team!

Posted by: evtoi | May 2, 2010 2:32 PM | Report abuse

Wait a minute...the Pens figure out Halak for a second straight game? How is this possible? He's Jesus.

Posted by: MyPostIDisAfake | May 2, 2010 2:35 PM | Report abuse

you know what all the spin doctors are gonna say... this isn't the same Halak, he's tired and worn out after the Caps series so it's not fair to compare what he did to what he's doing against the Pens now, blah, blah...

Posted by: joek443 | May 2, 2010 2:46 PM | Report abuse

Theo will be gone next year, right? I can't imagine that they would think the Nuevy/Varly duo will be ready on their own. Do you think they will bring a strong goalie for the next two years? Who will be available?

Posted by: caraveli | May 2, 2010 2:48 PM | Report abuse

Ha ha ha! The Habs are now outshooting the Pens and equalized the score. Go Habs. If the Pens lose, let's see what happens to all the theories of how much better they are playing than the Caps. It would be very interesting.

So is anyone going to answer me about the goaltending situation?

Posted by: caraveli | May 2, 2010 2:54 PM | Report abuse

Well at least we won the president's cup and game six was the best played game in the history of the caps franchise. I cannot lose sight that we have a really good coach and a really good team. We are not going to change a thing and we most certainly will not criticize our coach or our players. We'll just tell the fans that a hot goalie robbed us. It happens (year after year).

Posted by: evtoi | May 2, 2010 2:55 PM | Report abuse

Theo will be gone next year, right? I can't imagine that they would think the Nuevy/Varly duo will be ready on their own. Do you think they will bring a strong goalie for the next two years? Who will be available?

Posted by: caraveli | May 2, 2010 2:48 PM | Report abuse

Theo will be gone unless he's willing to take a huge paycut. if he stays healthy, I think Varly will/should get about 50 starts next year. That's somethiing that would have happened this year had he stayed healthy because he was playing lights out - top 5 in the league in both GAA and save percentage before he was injured.

they might bring in a veteran backup if they're not comfortable with going with two young goalies but right now, I think it will be Varly #1 and Neuvy #2.

Posted by: joek443 | May 2, 2010 3:07 PM | Report abuse

how about Dan Ellis of the Preds? I doubt Poile will re-sign him when they already have Rinne.

Posted by: joek443 | May 2, 2010 3:11 PM | Report abuse

Canadiens are being scrappy.

:)))))))))))))))

Posted by: MyPostIDisAfake | May 2, 2010 3:26 PM | Report abuse

Looks like the Montreal lead shut up all the "Caps" fans who are really Pens apologists.

Posted by: BigMogilny | May 2, 2010 4:24 PM | Report abuse

MTL leads PIT 2-1 with 4 minutes to go. Halak with 38 saves. Okay I don't feel so bad now. =) PIT has to feel our pain as well.

Posted by: rachel216 | May 2, 2010 4:33 PM | Report abuse

WOW, Habs take a 3-1 lead and immediately after Adams goes for the CHEAP SHOT.

Posted by: MyPostIDisAfake | May 2, 2010 4:35 PM | Report abuse

As others have suggested, I sincerely hope the Caps were all watching the Pens and taking notes on their play so they can emulate the Pens next year. After all, the Caps only swept the Pens this season, and Montreal gave up a whole goal against them and win a game in a series that what was supposed to be a Pens sweep.

Just one game? Could have said that about the Caps game 5, too.

Posted by: BigMogilny | May 2, 2010 4:42 PM | Report abuse

Holy crap.. Pens fans sound like us after playing the Habs.

couple of posts on pensburgh

"CBC keeps talking about Halak. He had a few good saves, but I thought the Pens lost this game rather than Montreal winning it. Yes, Montreal D had a good trap, but Pens let it get to them. Malkin played without any energy at all. Crosby started off okay, but then looked tired and made some really dumb plays and didn’t have the jump in his step to get into the checking. He needs to be careful not to let the trap get to him. That’s how we lost against the Devils all season.

"Low percentage trash, no trailer in the play, so no second wave or sustained offensive presence in the zone. I could have played goal for the Habs today. OK, maybe not me, but you get the idea…"

"Sorry, anyone who thinks Halak is why we’re losing needs to learn the game."

Posted by: rachel216 | May 2, 2010 4:46 PM | Report abuse

Well, HELLO all you who lectured us about how the Penguins were going to blow MTL away. Hmmmm....the game looked very familiar today---MTL outshot PITT, Halak made a bunch of saves, end result: MTL wins 3 - 1. So tell me again how PITT was going to be sooooo much better than the Caps?

This series could go either way----just like the first round of the Caps vs MTL.

Craig Adams FINALLY got called for his dirty hit. Remember when he pulled that cr^p on Ovi and didn't get punished, but when Ovi did a similiar hit on Campbell he got suspended? I think Adams should be suspended.

Posted by: dccitizen1 | May 2, 2010 4:51 PM | Report abuse

@rachel216

That's actually not how most of the Caps "fans" sounded after our losses. After our losses, Caps "fans" were saying we needed to trash our system and get rid of everyone. The Pens fan is much more reasonable about how their team lost.

Posted by: BigMogilny | May 2, 2010 4:52 PM | Report abuse

A lot of D-men on the market. We better see some fresh faces for next season.

Some I like- Volchenkov, Robidas, Hamhuis, Zidlicky, and Michalek. Obviously a lot of the defense-men on the market will re-up with their teams. But i expect to see 2 new d-men on the Caps this season!

Posted by: digster1013 | May 2, 2010 4:54 PM | Report abuse

Well a lot of fans (included me wasn't buying into the whole Halak is the best thing ever talk) Some Pens fans are actually very knowledgable, it's surprising. Another good post:

"Pens need to adjust. That was just an abysmal game after the first 10 minutes.

Montreal played exactly the game they wanted. They gave Halak the chance to shine. He didn’t have to make tough saves; the defense in front of him made sure of that. But, he stopped what he needed to stop and that’s what I was afraid of.

The Pens are playing themselves right into the “Halak Mystique” and letting all the media jump on Halak’s jock for being so awesome.

The Pens gave that game away with not being able to break the Montreal zone with any efficiency and then lapsing in the neutral zone and turning over too many pucks."

NOW that does sound a bit like some of the reaction after our last 3 games.

Posted by: rachel216 | May 2, 2010 4:57 PM | Report abuse

MTL's got a great plan going and it may take them far. The way they play is boring as hell and I don't think great for casual hockey fans, but it is very effective.

Posted by: rachel216 | May 2, 2010 4:59 PM | Report abuse

I think Halak saved the Habs' butts during some parts. The Pens came out blazing in the 3rd, and Halak made some great saves.

Posted by: MyPostIDisAfake | May 2, 2010 5:00 PM | Report abuse

@rachel216

Yes, but the Pens fans aren't advocating crucifying half the team, eliminating the coach, and changing the whole identity of the team by bringing in unneeded "shutdown D-men" instead of realizing that the Caps are a fine team that seemed to get caught in the Halak mystique themselves.

Posted by: BigMogilny | May 2, 2010 5:02 PM | Report abuse

Sorry---I meant to say that PITT had more shots on goal than MTL, just like the Caps had done.

Posted by: dccitizen1 | May 2, 2010 5:04 PM | Report abuse

Having watched game 1 & 2 of pens/habs I feel comfortable reconfirming that Boubreau is a coaching midget and that Ovie is a fraud as a captain. Montreal was the better team. Stay delusional, caps fans.

Posted by: doughless | May 2, 2010 5:06 PM | Report abuse

BigMogilny: well you're right on that but who knows what Pens fans may say if they actually lose the series. They haven't lost the series yet but now anyone has a chance. And I admit I was wrong, I said they would sweep but after today's game, I'm not so sure. The Habs frustrated the Pens and did the same exact thing they did to us.

Posted by: rachel216 | May 2, 2010 5:07 PM | Report abuse

I would take Halak over any of the caps goalies in a second. Varley was pedestrian. You can see that a real coach doesn't toss his #1 goalie out like trash after a rough spot. Theodore will land somewhere else and will be thaNkful he no longer has to be subjected to a poor excuse for a coach.

Posted by: doughless | May 2, 2010 5:15 PM | Report abuse

"A lot of D-men on the market. We better see some fresh faces for next season."

100% agreed, the Caps have HUGE holes in thier defense right now.

I still feel that getting all of those fowards and not enough D at the deadline hurt the Caps more than help. Corvo was definately NOT the answer on defense.

"I would take Halak over any of the caps goalies in a second."

I think most people would. Crazy thing is in the middle of that series I was genuinely hoping they would bring up Nuevy.

If I am that guy, I make a serious play to management that I am the #1 goalie next year.

BUT if they don't fix thier defense it won't matter much.

- Ray

Posted by: rmcazz | May 2, 2010 5:42 PM | Report abuse

Yes, but the Pens fans aren't advocating crucifying half the team, eliminating the coach, and changing the whole identity of the team by bringing in unneeded "shutdown D-men" instead of realizing that the Caps are a fine team that seemed to get caught in the Halak mystique themselves.

Posted by: BigMogilny | May 2, 2010 5:02 PM | Report abuse

if the Caps make the Finals two straight years and win one of them like the Pens just did, they will get a longer leash from some of us well. Yes, the system has worked very well for 3 years in the regular season but they have yet to prove anything in the playoffs.

Posted by: joek443 | May 2, 2010 6:14 PM | Report abuse

Ray, having read many of the posts over the past couple of days, I think there are many caps fans that think Halak is nothing more than average. That said, mental midget Boudreau didn't take action on PP or 5 on 5 to make Halak's life uncomfortable.

Someone earlier said Montreal strategy was boring. They neat the caps flashy gameplan. I take boring over flashy ANYDAY IF It means a series win.

Posted by: doughless | May 2, 2010 6:15 PM | Report abuse

Halak mystique?

I told you guys before the series started Halak was a beast. There really shouldn't be anymore ifs about it, Halak has proven on multiple occasions (before the playoffs started) he is the real deal.

Posted by: richmondphil | May 2, 2010 6:21 PM | Report abuse

I would take Halak over any of the caps goalies in a second. Varley was pedestrian. You can see that a real coach doesn't toss his #1 goalie out like trash after a rough spot. Theodore will land somewhere else and will be thaNkful he no longer has to be subjected to a poor excuse for a coach.

Posted by: doughless | May 2, 2010 5:15 PM | Report abuse

Theo has 2 or 3 shutouts in his 2 full seasons with the Caps. what makes you think he would have done any better than Varly did?

the only way the Caps were gonna win any of the last three games of the series was by blanking the Habs in one of them. And Varly has more shutouts than Theo in half as many starts since they've both been here.

Posted by: joek443 | May 2, 2010 6:30 PM | Report abuse

It wasn't a "freak thing" though. That's what you people aren't getting. It's a pattern. Halak, Fleury, Lunqvuist, Biron. That's three years of very average goalies made to look like world beaters by a Caps team playing a sytem that doesn't work in the playoffs.

___________________________

2 of the goalies you named are not very average, and are considered elite (Lundy and Halak). MAF isn't very good, but he has been to the Finals for the past two years, so it can be said he's able to come up with timely saves at the right moment, ala Giggy and Osgood. Biron sucks, and we didn't make him look that good either.

I've been reading your posts in this thread. You've seen to have gone from rational critiquing to just flat out exaggerating facts and borderline trolling. Just sayin...

Posted by: richmondphil | May 2, 2010 6:32 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: doughless | May 2, 2010 5:15 PM

you really believe we would've won with Theo instead of Varly? we scored 1 goal in the last 3 games. Varly gave up 2, 3, and 2 in the last three games. The offense was the problem, not goaltending.

Posted by: rachel216 | May 2, 2010 6:34 PM | Report abuse

"Poor Defense allowed the Habs to take early leads. Once the early lead was established, they could sit back ond focus 100% on defense. MTL Scored first in 5 of 7 games in this Series."
_________________________________________
This is pretty spot on though.

Posted by: richmondphil | May 2, 2010 6:35 PM | Report abuse

My girlfriend gave me 72 hours to vent and be pissed off as much as possible before I had to put game 7 loss behind me...

Watching these playoffs games with teams we are clearly better then, is not helping me do this.

I am trying to remember why we didn't re-sign Matt Cooke. He looked good today and could have provided some tough 3rd-4th line play....Thoughts on that??

Posted by: adamkatzen | May 2, 2010 6:38 PM | Report abuse

"A lot of D-men on the market. We better see some fresh faces for next season."

100% agreed, the Caps have HUGE holes in their defense right now.

Luckily, large, physical, defensive minded, shot-blocking defesemen are available at the shop known as the Ottawa Senators. Andy Sutton and Anton Volchenkov (CAPS love Russians) are both UFAs this offseason. I hope the CAPS sign one of them.

But, we all knew about that hole on this version of the CAPS. The playoffs brought into focus another glaring need that may have been disguised by all the (regular season) offensive fireworks. A skilled 2nd line Center.

I say try to bring in another great on ice/in the lockerroom addition like Knuble was. I hope they get Saku Koivu. His game is made to be teamed w/a sniper winger and a physical winger. And his experience (in life and on ice) can only help w/some of the psychological growth that the team needs.

Posted by: SportzWiz | May 2, 2010 6:45 PM | Report abuse

And Pens fans can try to deflect Halak's play away all they want (like a lot of Caps fan are trying to do), but I don't understand why it can't be both? Hot goaltender + non-adjusting offense = recipe for a loss.

Plus, it's not that hard to see that Halak is the real deal. 5 shutouts in 40 some games this season, and posted top 5 in save percentage. This is like if people tried to tell me Vokoun isn't that good because the team he plays for, which sucks, happens to make the playoffs and he does good. In contrast, this is like when people try to say Luongo isn't that good because his team hasn't gone that far in the playoffs. Lundy puts the pretty abysmal Rags defense on his back routinely.

Lots of different factors go into play on how a goaltender is going to be perceived in his performance, but lets not try to pretend Halak isn't that good because we want to.

Posted by: richmondphil | May 2, 2010 6:46 PM | Report abuse

I don't want Andy Sutton. There's younger, faster guys who play as physical as him available.

Saku Koivu though, I'd love him as our 2nd line center. I think we may see our 2nd line center get filled through a trade though, if it does get filled.

Seems like Belanger is going to be here next year..

Posted by: richmondphil | May 2, 2010 6:47 PM | Report abuse

Well then I guess we're cursed, we'll just have to accept a hot goalie beating us every year in the playoffs.

Lundy was hot the first two games last year but we solved him. Halak, we seemed to get to him in games 2 and 3 but after that.. nothing.

Posted by: rachel216 | May 2, 2010 6:53 PM | Report abuse

THE PENS LOSS MADE MY DAY. This is the first time since the horrible day of game seven that there was something to smile about.

BigMogilny: I couldn't agree with you more and I appreciate your sarcasm: "As others have suggested, I sincerely hope the Caps were all watching the Pens and taking notes..."

This was an exact replay of what happened to us--Crosby was held without a goal or, I think, assist; Pens power play was ineffective; the tream was frustrated blah blah blah.

So it was not that there was something inherently wrong with the Caps' system or the coach, etc. The only thing that remains to be seen is if and how the Pens react. Are they capable of adjusting and what exactly will they do to adjust if Halak keeps playing like this?

It comes down to what I have always advocated in this blog: getting the miracle goalie--not sparing money or effort. Varly has the potential. Let's see if he can develop into that. But I always thought that Theo should have gone last year and replaced by someone young, dynamic and up-and-coming.

Did anyone see Dan Rosen's column about how the East turned upside down?http://www.nhl.com/ice/news.htm?id=527527&navid=DL|NHL|home

He is talking about the Caps, Devils and Sabres and points to goalies (Halak, Boucher and Rask being the difference makers):

"How did this happen? There are several factors, but as always, goaltending is right at the top of the list."

Posted by: caraveli | May 2, 2010 7:00 PM | Report abuse

Again, by putting some laurels on the goal tender, that doesn't mean the other teams play is not simply excused. Why can't it be both?

Frankly, I don't see the Caps players working 100% every moment on the ice.

As as someone else pointed out earlier, and like I said in a previous thread about the flyers, these Caps players are going to get BB fired. Yeah, he deserves a lot of the blame, but quite frankly, when it's obvious with your eyeballs that the Caps players aren't working every single second on the ice, I'll gladly put most of the blame on their shoulders.

Posted by: richmondphil | May 2, 2010 7:02 PM | Report abuse

What about Matthew Lombardi as the second line center?

Posted by: digster1013 | May 2, 2010 7:03 PM | Report abuse

Lombardi would probably put up more points versus Koivu, I just like all the intangibles a guy like Saku would bring.

I don't know if we'd be able to afford a UFA like Lombardi, especially coming off his career year with the Yotes. (who have tons of cash to resign people)

Posted by: richmondphil | May 2, 2010 7:08 PM | Report abuse

some of that is BB's own fault. I'm not a big fan of the "my way or the highway" type of coach like Mike Keenan but I'm also not a fan of the "players' coach" type.

I think BB's style tilts too much to the latter. When's the last time anyone saw him bench anyone, especially one of the stars, for anything even for a shift or two??

Posted by: joek443 | May 2, 2010 7:13 PM | Report abuse

Yeah I wouldn't mind Saku either. It's just I really liked the way Lombardi played this year, which is probably why they will resign him. Same with Michalek.

And about our goalies; I really believe Varly can be the guy. Either way, he has to be given at least this year to see what he can as the full time starter. No reason to go out and spend money on Halak.

Posted by: digster1013 | May 2, 2010 7:15 PM | Report abuse

And about our goalies; I really believe Varly can be the guy. Either way, he has to be given at least this year to see what he can as the full time starter. No reason to go out and spend money on Halak.

Posted by: digster1013 | May 2, 2010 7:15 PM | Report abuse

I think that was the plan this year but his injuries screwed up that plan. I heard Joe B. say on the radio a couple weeks ago that he thought Varly would have gotten about 50 starts this year had he stayed healthy. I agree with that assessment.

Posted by: joek443 | May 2, 2010 7:22 PM | Report abuse

I think that was the plan this year but his injuries screwed up that plan. I heard Joe B. say on the radio a couple weeks ago that he thought Varly would have gotten about 50 starts this year had he stayed healthy. I agree with that assessment.

Posted by: joek443 | May 2, 2010 7:22 PM | Report abuse

Yeah I remember hearing that to, but this year Theo wont be in the way.

Varly will be the main guy. I really hope he can stay healthy. If he gets injured again, there will be some serious doubt on whether he can hold up as a starting goaltender.

Posted by: digster1013 | May 2, 2010 7:28 PM | Report abuse

@adamkatzen

From what I can remember, the reason that Cooke wasn't signed by the Caps after the 2007-2008 season is that the Caps' management (GM GM, I assume) felt that Matt Bradley could play the role just as well.

Posted by: CapsFan75 | May 2, 2010 7:36 PM | Report abuse

Hey Pens,

Welcome to the Halek jungle. Welcome. Tonight's game looked eerily familiar. We Caps' fans, and you you Pittsburgh, can laugh all you want...call me when you've won this series.

Thanks.

Posted by: saintex | May 2, 2010 8:47 PM | Report abuse

Sidney Crosby had only 1 shot on goal in game 2 in 24:30 of playing time and just under 5 minutes on the PP. (He was on the ice for 2 goals against)

Malkin had 3 shots and was -1
---------------

Did anyone here that Mike Keenan is being considered for the New Jersey coaching job?

I guess Kovalchuk wont be back there.

Think it would be funny watching him pull Brodeur after every bad goal - Keenan has always had a love/hate relationship with goalies...and pulls them more than any coach I have ever followed.

Posted by: yesisaiditfirst | May 2, 2010 8:54 PM | Report abuse

MTL's got a great plan going and it may take them far. The way they play is boring as hell and I don't think great for casual hockey fans, but it is very effective.

Posted by: rachel216

HAHA so true. Glad to see the Pens are getting a little dose of Canadien love. The next two games at the Bell center will be interesting.

Is it just me, or does the Igloo seem like the tamest stadium in the league? It always seems like those fans are sitting on their hands. It sure seems quiet on TV at least.

Posted by: LloydChristmas | May 2, 2010 9:04 PM | Report abuse

So, if it's all on the coach to make adjustments in the way a team plays against the trap, why didn't PITT do that today? I mean, didn't Dan B. watch the Caps/Habs series? He had to know what was coming. Or is playing against a trap not as simple as just "making adjustments"?

Meanwhile, DET and SJ are tied up 2 to 2 in a more freewheeling type of game.

Posted by: dccitizen1 | May 2, 2010 9:07 PM | Report abuse

once is an accident, twice is a coincidence and three times is a trend... we will see how the Pens counter in Game 3.

My guess is they will do a better job mostly because of their experience. This is their 10th playoff series in the last 2 years plus, they've won 8 outta 9 so far. I'm sure this isn't the first time they've run into a team with this system or a hot goalie.

Posted by: joek443 | May 2, 2010 9:23 PM | Report abuse

ESPN has a rumor right now that the only trade deadline guy that may be back next year is Belenger. I think having him as our second line center is good becasue it adds someone who will play in their own zone on our second line then we can have Gordon and Steckle as our 3rd and 4th line center with Backstrom as our 1st. This only works if he is willing to take a little less then we gave BMo last year.

There is also a rumor that Jose will be gone (duh) but that the Caps may consider adding a goalie and mentioned that Turco and Nabokov are both FAs at seasons end. I think SJ goes hard to get Nabby back so I don't see him as a choice (nor do I want him). Turco is an interesting idea. I think he will go very cheap because there are not many teams that are looking for a #1 goalie. Also Turco is very good at playing the puck and could help us with the breakout when teams play the dump and chase which is how the Habs hurt us this year. I think if he is willing to sign a 1-2 year deal worth just under $2 million the Caps should jump on it. I would much rather have a veteran goalie on the team and have a rookie take Flash or Fehr's spot then have whichever one of those two we keep and have two goalies with less then a year of total experience.

Posted by: icehammer97 | May 2, 2010 9:23 PM | Report abuse

The Caps are not going to pay Nabokov or Turco. They have good young GT'ers and I don't care for them to pay another guy $4-5m. It's not worth it. Look at the number of goals given up (minus EN'rs) in this series and I'm fine with the 1 or 2 they gave up most games.

Give me a special teams coach with some bite, Volchenkov for Green, and one more center.

I need nothing more.

Posted by: saintex | May 2, 2010 9:30 PM | Report abuse

I think it would be a mistake to waste any money on a veteran goalie during this off-season. They can always pick one up before the deadline if they feel the need.

this team already knows they can win with Varly/Neuvy and before one of them is due to make the big bucks, they need to spend that money in other areas (d-men & center) and really make a serious run for the Cup.

Posted by: joek443 | May 2, 2010 9:43 PM | Report abuse

The only thing I wish the Capitals will lead for the league next year is Goals Against Average and Shots Allowed by Opponent. If they are within the top 5 for those categories, I would not care which seed they are in for the Playoffs.

Posted by: JohnWWW | May 2, 2010 10:03 PM | Report abuse

@ saintex I don't think anyone is going to pay $4+ million for Turco.

@joek443 It is very VERY hard to get a veteran goalie during the season. No matter who teams have they ask way too much for a goalie with experience. Look at the Islanders this year. They had three goalies all with experience and no real chance at the playoffs and they didn't get rid of any of their goalies becuase they were asking for way too much. It is much easier to get a veteran in the offseason then during the season.

Posted by: icehammer97 | May 2, 2010 10:14 PM | Report abuse

The only thing I wish the Capitals will lead for the league next year is Goals Against Average and Shots Allowed by Opponent. If they are within the top 5 for those categories, I would not care which seed they are in for the Playoffs.

Posted by: JohnWWW | May 2, 2010 10:03 PM | Report abuse

that would be great but I think that's a little unrealistic... I'd settle for a top ten in defense and PK which was what I was hoping for before the start of this season.

Posted by: joek443 | May 2, 2010 10:23 PM | Report abuse

@ icehammer97

what do you think about Dan Ellis?

Posted by: joek443 | May 2, 2010 10:28 PM | Report abuse

I'm not icehammer,

But I don't see the point in signing someone like Ellis. He is no better than what we have. If he put up mediocre stats in Nashville, he will suck here.

Stick with Varly and Neuvy, and wait for Holtby.

Posted by: digster1013 | May 2, 2010 10:35 PM | Report abuse

Re: goalies
My 2 cents....
Next year Varly and Neuvirth will be our starting goalies, 1A and 1B. By mid-season, Neuvy will be outplaying Varly and will steal the #1 job.

Now I'm not going to get into any huge discussions or arguments with any of you. I'm just expressing my gut instinct.

Posted by: tess2201 | May 2, 2010 10:42 PM | Report abuse

@ digster1013

I'm all for going with Varly/Neuvy but if they're gonna sign a veteran goalie, I think someone like Ellis would be cheaper than Turco.

Varly will be number one no matter who they might bring in but I think there's a chance that they might wanna go with a veteran backup for one more year.

Posted by: joek443 | May 2, 2010 10:44 PM | Report abuse

"Three years in a row and it's "mental"? How about a lack of teamwork, lack of physical play, lack of cycling the puck, lack of battling along the boards, lousy shooting, poor coaching, etc."

Yeah, your right. We should just blow up this team up and start over. It's hopeless. LMAO. Get out of here!

How about those Habs today, huh? I think they just took home ice advantage away from Pitt. I thought and posted that the first game was a throwaway game, but I still thought Pitt might end up making our lose look even worse. If Montreal gets one at home they will be well on their way to proving that it wasn't so much of a fluke. A hot team and a hot goalie at the right time of year will give anyone fits including the defending champs. I hope it happens bc I'm sick of the hockey world/VS gushing over anything Crosby and the Pens and nitpicking the Caps every chance they get. It's a little overboard only bc of the Canadian/Russian prejudice and it's annoying.

Posted by: rphilli721 | May 3, 2010 2:28 AM | Report abuse

Give me a special teams coach with some bite, Volchenkov for Green, and one more center.

__________________________

Eh, come on saintex..I'm a big Anton supporter as anyone else here, but that trade (Anton is a pending UFA, by the way..) is just ridiculous.

RE; Turco, Nabokov, Dan Ellis

old, will resign, ellis?

We just need to sign a cheap ass vet goalie, like Biron or BJ. BJ is obviously out, as he up'd with the Pens..but you get my idea. We don't need to go out and spend money on some stop-gap goaltender.


Anyways, a goalie is last on my list of worries. Don't really get the fixation with discussing which stop-gap goalie we want...just sign one and let him play back up.

Posted by: richmondphil | May 3, 2010 5:22 AM | Report abuse

I would like to take a moment to welcome the Pittburgh Penguins to Capitals H E L L. It is true that the Pens detstroyed the Habs in Game 1, but so did the Caps in the 3rd of game 2, and for games 3 and 4. Yesterday's game looked eerily familiar to game 1, 5, 6, and 7 for the Caps. There is no doubt the Pens are by far the better team, as the Caps were.

For those that love to hate the Capitals, continue to want to say they blew it, choked, etc should have listened to the interview with Jacques Martin between the 2nd and 3rd. He was asked what was going right today, why was his system working today, but not in game 1. His answer, Halak is not tired now, he has time to recover.

Also, some of you will say that the Pens have lost Staal, which would be an excuse, which you guys that love to hate would always through out there when fans would defend their play. For those that say that Staal is out, well, Markov has been out since the 1st period of game 1. In a series like this Markov is a bigger loss to Montreal than Staal is to Pittsburgh. Staal's major contribution is his defensive play, which is why he is a Selke candidate. Defense isn't an issue with the Pens because just like in our series the Canadiens don't have a potent offense, just an opportunistic one.

Posted by: fanohock1 | May 3, 2010 6:43 AM | Report abuse

I would like to take a moment to welcome the Pittburgh Penguins to Capitals H E L L. It is true that the Pens detstroyed the Habs in Game 1, but so did the Caps in the 3rd of game 2, and for games 3 and 4. Yesterday's game looked eerily familiar to game 1, 5, 6, and 7 for the Caps. There is no doubt the Pens are by far the better team, as the Caps were.

For those that love to hate the Capitals, continue to want to say they blew it, choked, etc should have listened to the interview with Jacques Martin between the 2nd and 3rd. He was asked what was going right today, why was his system working today, but not in game 1. His answer, Halak is not tired now, he has time to recover.

Also, some of you will say that the Pens have lost Staal, which would be an excuse, which you guys that love to hate the Caps would not allow the Caps, like a goaltender was playing out of his freakin' mind wasn't an acceptable conclusion. For those that say that Staal is out, well, Markov has been out since the 1st period of game 1. In a series like this Markov is a bigger loss to Montreal than Staal is to Pittsburgh. Staal's major contribution is his defensive play, which is why he is a Selke candidate. Defense isn't an issue with the Pens because just like in our series the Canadiens don't have a potent offense, just an opportunistic one.

Posted by: fanohock1 | May 3, 2010 6:49 AM | Report abuse

I would like to take a moment to welcome the Pittburgh Penguins to Capitals H E L L.
Posted by: fanohock1 | May 3, 2010 6:49 AM

**************************************************************
Well said! From the first game, I thought the Habs would win the series. They play a bunker defense, awful to watch, but it causes hard shots to ricochet into the opponent's zone and they have the speed to score on those breaks. To blame Coach Bruce is just ignorant. I've been listening to hockey since Danny Boy Kelly was announcing Blues games which were broadcast into the hinterlands where I lived and remember Gump in net. A fast team playing a bunker defense is H E L L.

Posted by: flynnie321 | May 3, 2010 8:37 AM | Report abuse

@Phil.

I'll take the defense over the offense any day. Same price or less. We don't need offense. I'd have not problem with the move and I like Mike Green.

Posted by: saintex | May 3, 2010 8:38 AM | Report abuse

One thing needs to be said. Thanks, Jose, for 20-0-3 - another example of a great athlete finding refuge in his sport from personal chaos in his life. Just thanks. I hope Jose comes back and gets another crack at the Cup.

Posted by: flynnie321 | May 3, 2010 8:50 AM | Report abuse

I think it would be a mistake to waste any money on a veteran goalie during this off-season. They can always pick one up before the deadline if they feel the need.

this team already knows they can win with Varly/Neuvy and before one of them is due to make the big bucks, they need to spend that money in other areas (d-men & center) and really make a serious run for the Cup.

Posted by: joek443 | May 2, 2010 9:43 PM | Report abuse

----------------

Agreed...agreed - with this position we "play the system"

We will probably be able to win the eastern conference in the regular season with any goalie so give Varly/Neuvy a shot to impress - they just might if the D is better in front.

As a last resort - if they both suck then trade at the deadline for a goalie for the playoffs. It won't cost a dime to pay a guy for a month - then it will not affect anything we do.

We know that the three young goalies in our system need a shot and playing time to prove and get better...do that first!

If they completely suck all season we still make the playoffs so why pay for someone else to get us there....just be smart at the day of no return - trade deadline day...*

Posted by: yesisaiditfirst | May 3, 2010 9:40 AM | Report abuse

I think a battle all season btw Varly and Neuvy will be great. Both have the chance to be outstanding; and from what I hear Holtby in Hershey is REALLY good.....

MTL played the perfect game again yesterday, as they did 4 times against us. They beat a far superior opponent, again, as they did against us. It really is amazing to watch.....not sure how long they can keep it up, but it is nice to see them take it to the Pens...

Posted by: adamkatzen | May 3, 2010 9:47 AM | Report abuse

Trap = Hot goalie?

The Pens record vs trapping teams was worse than they Caps. They were swept by the Devils this year and none of the games were even close. Brodeur got his shutout record against the Pens.

Halak has played well, but he's not standing on his head. Both teams got frustrated and starting throwing a lot of low percentage shots on net. I'm waiting to see if the Pens will adjust their style or turn into Sitting Bull like BB and the Caps.

To those who say they'd rather have Crosby as Captain than Ovi: Did you see the Next One throw a temper tantrum yesterday (breaking his stick on the goalie cage, lashing out at players like a 5 year old) when things didn't go his way? When I saw that display I thought "What a great leader"! LOL

You complain about Ovi enjoying life and not spending every moment of the day thinking about hockey. What do you want him to do? Sit in Lenosis' basement reviewing tape alone like Sid? How can someone be a leader of men if they don't interact with them?. You can have Crosby. I'll take Captain Ovi everyday of the week.

Posted by: ablake70 | May 3, 2010 10:20 AM | Report abuse

There is a trade on ESPN NHL Rumor Central I really liked. The Caps offering Green and maybe Tomas Fleischmann or Eric Fehr to the Rangers for Marc Staal and Ryan Callahan or Brandon Dubinsky. I would take this in a heartbeat. What does everyone else think?

There is also talk about Flash for Rehger and signing Turko and Anton Volchenkov. I know not a lot of people want Turko but it is going to be tough going with two young goalies the entire year. It is important to have a vet there.

Other names mentioned areguys like Colby Armstrong, Owen Nolan and Matt Cooke, Willie Mitchell, or Hal Gill

Posted by: capsfan5252 | May 3, 2010 10:22 AM | Report abuse

And what is everyone's fixation with the goalie position? All 3 Vezina candidates went out in the first round, while the Flyers beat the Devils in 5 with career backup
Brian Boucher. I'd worry about finding a backup for Slapshot before signing a hot shot goalie.

Posted by: ablake70 | May 3, 2010 10:33 AM | Report abuse

Any trade talk rumors right now are just that, rumors. So called experts speculating what will take place. The Capitals don't even know what they want to do yet so I would be my house that GMGM is not in discussions with any other GMs, not while the playoffs are still in session.

I would also suspect, no matter what you Green haters want to believe, that Green is not going anywhere. To trade the premiere offensive defenseman in the league straight up for a pure stay-at-home defenseman is not what the Caps will do. They want to add the stay-at-home aspect because it is a hole to plug. Move Green for Volchenkov (or any other proven SAH D) is plugging one hole and opening another. Green is young, and still learning.

If the Caps bring a solid SAH to the team BB can use that pair (new SAH with Poti) they can be the shutdown pair. Our line-up would look pretty good with SAH/Poit, Green/Schultz, Carlson/Alzner. I'm just showing the 3 pairings, not depth.

Same goes for a true 2nd line center. You cannot move Semin to get a true 2nd line center because then you've plugged the 2nd line center issue but opened up the no finisher issue on the 2nd line. It is my opinion, but I honestly believe if Semin could have a line to call his own instead of having revolving partners he would have less and shorter stretches of ineffectiveness.

Now, I know the salary cap is an issue, so it's up to GMGM to figure out how to make this happen. There are many other teams that would love to know exactly what has to be done and that the correct acquisitions of as few as 2 players can possibly be the solution to the riddle. Good luck in the offseason GMGM.

Posted by: fanohock1 | May 3, 2010 10:38 AM | Report abuse

We need a STUD D man and a SOLID/GOOD second line center and we are set. I think taking the pressure of being the minute muncher off greeen will let him relax and flourish. I am not sold on going into the seson with the two young guys in goal, but if it doesnt work out we can trade for a vet at the trade dead line and get er done!

PK will be a big issue to shore up over the off-season, it was our weak-link most of the season.

Ovie was good, but not him self in the play-offs. I didnt feel he was hitting like we have seen in the past. He semed a little timid to hit after his suspension from the hit in the Hawks game.

Posted by: Capsfannmiss | May 3, 2010 10:39 AM | Report abuse

Yeah, Neuvy and Varly are more than capable of carrying the team. Both take the position very seriously and are future all-stars.

I would love to trade Green and Fleish but I doubt we'll get rid of both. It would be great to have Volchenkov. Maybe pair him with Poti or Jurcina.

Posted by: LloydChristmas | May 3, 2010 10:43 AM | Report abuse

fanohock1,

I am not an idiot! I know everything is pure speculation! haha what a joke. I love how people think they are soo much smarter than other people. Man I wish I had your hockey IQ. There is nothing for awhile to talk about so I thought I would bring up a topic to talk about. Thanks for the response.

Posted by: capsfan5252 | May 3, 2010 10:49 AM | Report abuse

I'll take Captain Ovi everyday of the week.

Posted by: ablake70
___________________________________________

What a culture of complacent losing the Washington Capitals have wrought. Sad.

Posted by: Jumpy66 | May 3, 2010 11:34 AM | Report abuse

Watching the Detroit-San Jose series reminded me of some of the things that our team currently lacks. Detroit's forwards, in particular their tops players like Datsuyk and Zetterberg, consistently backcheck and play strong on both ends. Each time consistently has players going strong to the goal whether in 5 on 5 or on the power play. ALL of the goals were scored on rebounds, deflections, or through traffic. Both teams played a fast paced but physical style for 3 periods.

Another major differnce is the quality of the defense on both sides. I seriously doubt that any of our defenseman except possibly Poti would be on the top two pairings for either of these teams. Watching top defenseman like Boyle and Blake for San Jose and Lidstrom, Rafalski, Crowell, etc. on the Red Wings should be a serious reminder to GMGM how much we need to upgrade on the blueline.

Even if the Caps had advanced to the Finals, I don't see how the Caps could have beaten either San Jose or Detroit.

Posted by: wizfan89 | May 3, 2010 11:44 AM | Report abuse

Posted by: sgm3 | May 3, 2010 11:51 AM | Report abuse

Capsfan525: What's wrong with you. I didn't call you an idiot. I have no idea why you took my post so personal. Get a friggin' life.

Posted by: fanohock1 | May 3, 2010 11:53 AM | Report abuse

Nice job Backs. He didn't even have his stick when he blocked the 3rd shot.

http://www.tsn.ca/nhl/story/?id=320343

Posted by: fanohock1 | May 3, 2010 11:56 AM | Report abuse

Jumpy66: Ya want to know what is sad? You, as a Pens fan, coming here. Go back to your Pens boards.

Posted by: fanohock1 | May 3, 2010 12:00 PM | Report abuse

I'll take the defense over the offense any day. Same price or less. We don't need offense. I'd have not problem with the move and I like Mike Green.

Posted by: saintex | May 3, 2010 8:38 AM |

I'd take Anton over a lot of defenseman in the league, but that's not my point. Straight up, Green is worth about 2x the value of Anton. Plus, like I said, he's a pending UFA, so he's not going to be traded though. I do, however, want the Capitals to be pushing to sign him.

_________________________________________

There is a trade on ESPN NHL Rumor Central I really liked. The Caps offering Green and maybe Tomas Fleischmann or Eric Fehr to the Rangers for Marc Staal and Ryan Callahan or Brandon Dubinsky. I would take this in a heartbeat. What does everyone else think?

There is also talk about Flash for Rehger and signing Turko and Anton Volchenkov. I know not a lot of people want Turko but it is going to be tough going with two young goalies the entire year. It is important to have a vet there.

Other names mentioned areguys like Colby Armstrong, Owen Nolan and Matt Cooke, Willie Mitchell, or Hal Gill

_______________________________

Mark Staal is a pretty decent defender, but the real treasure of that trade would be Callahan or Dubinsky. (Frankly, I'd rather have Callahan)

I keep hearing this Regehr talk, and I would love to see it happen, but I wouldn't hold my breath. Regehr is signed thru 2012.

Turco? If he wants to make like 1 mil. He will be offered more though, so no Marty for me.


@wizfan89

Well, to be honest, Z-berg and Datsyuk especially are considered two of the premier two-way forwards in the league. Pavel hasn't been a Selke nominee/winner a bunch of years for nothing.

Posted by: richmondphil | May 3, 2010 12:03 PM | Report abuse

Another major differnce is the quality of the defense on both sides. I seriously doubt that any of our defenseman except possibly Poti would be on the top two pairings for either of these teams. Watching top defenseman like Boyle and Blake for San Jose and Lidstrom, Rafalski, Crowell, etc. on the Red Wings should be a serious reminder to GMGM how much we need to upgrade on the blueline.

___________________

Well both of those teams top 4 d-man are impossible to crack.

Murray, Blake, Boyle, Vlasic.
Lidstrom Rafalski, Kronwall, Stuart.

Posted by: richmondphil | May 3, 2010 12:07 PM | Report abuse

Correct me if I am wrong but were not Rafalski and Stuart both tradeline acquisitions by the Wings?

Posted by: PhilR | May 3, 2010 12:11 PM | Report abuse

Not sure on Rafalski, but I know for a fact Stuart was a mid-season acquisition.

Holland or Babcock was quoted as saying the Stuart trade was one of the best ever.

Posted by: richmondphil | May 3, 2010 12:18 PM | Report abuse

Long time Caps fans are always complaining about Player X being run out of town and winning a Cup. What do you think will happen if Mike Green is traded?

Mike Green is a talented young defensman. The problem is that his development is being stunted by a shortsighted coach. Green tried to improve his play in the D zone at the beginning of the season and during the playoffs. Both times BB huffed, "He needs to score more goals!". So Green started making a lot of bad plays in the O zone, taking awful shots when passing to a teammate would have been a better option.

It's not just Green. With Nick, Ovi, and Semin, BB has growled that they need to shoot the puck instead of trying to set up plays. Sometimes, they passed too much, but the answer isn't to stop passing. Look at Nick and Semin's shot selection during the last 3 games. Uncharacteristic for both of them.

Our guys have raw talent that needs to be refined. In order to grow, they need to be allowed to make mistakes. So what if the Caps don't win 50 games and get 100+ points? If not being regular season or even Southeast Division champs allows this team to develop, I'm all for it.

Unfortunately, BB is too scared to sacrifice the regular season for player development.

Posted by: ablake70 | May 3, 2010 12:18 PM | Report abuse

And what is everyone's fixation with the goalie position? All 3 Vezina candidates went out in the first round, while the Flyers beat the Devils in 5 with career backup
Brian Boucher. I'd worry about finding a backup for Slapshot before signing a hot shot goalie.

Posted by: ablake70 | May 3, 2010 10:33 AM | Report abuse

*******

Right on - teams are putting emphasis on scoring first when it comes to contracts...they do not want to be locked into a Cristobal Huet or Jose Theodore deal - they just look at the Pens D and Goalie from 2009 and think anybody can probably do it with the right mix up front.

Posted by: yesisaiditfirst | May 3, 2010 12:20 PM | Report abuse

Correct me if I am wrong but were not Rafalski and Stuart both tradeline acquisitions by the Wings?

Posted by: PhilR

Rafalski was signed by the Red Wings in July 2007

Posted by: mlody67 | May 3, 2010 12:21 PM | Report abuse

These trade rumors are all bogus speculation right now. I never believe anybody is in GM GMs head. Probably someone in New York has a wish list of what they might need to make their team better. They read our comments on here about how "everyone wants to get rid of Mike Green" and voila: RUMOR...

Nobody predicted the Caps would get Corvo, Belanger, Walker or Jurcina (back) at the trade deadline - and the best sleuths did their homework.

Rumor mill will be the last to know when it comes to the Caps....or else Backstrom would already be signed by now.

Posted by: yesisaiditfirst | May 3, 2010 12:25 PM | Report abuse

Regehr being shopped is not speculation.

The Rags rumor is pretty ridiculous though.

Posted by: richmondphil | May 3, 2010 12:32 PM | Report abuse

Brad Stuart was a deadline acquisition, but not this year. Back in 2008. He was a phenomenal pick-up and instrumental in their Cup win that year.

Posted by: fanohock1 | May 3, 2010 12:35 PM | Report abuse

Regarding the Rags trade rumor. I don't see Green being shipped there. They already have 11.5 in salary tied up for 2 d-men. Do they really want another 5.25 million locked up in their D?

That's like 31% of the salary cap for 3 guys.

I do wonder however, if the Caps will make a play to ship Semin (plus another player/pick/etc) out for Regehr.

NOt too familiar with Calgary's style of play, but do they need more offense- would Semin make sense?

Posted by: Fro_ | May 3, 2010 1:32 PM | Report abuse

They do need more offense but they major problem in centermen. They don't even have a true 1st line centerman for Iginla.

Posted by: fanohock1 | May 3, 2010 1:38 PM | Report abuse

Good article.

http://www.nypost.com/p/sports/more_sports/caps_on_right_track_wxsKypBvSnhzRxdkSVEBmM

Posted by: sgm3 | May 3, 2010 11:51 AM

***********************************************************
Thanks, sgm3. Good article.

"Coaches who can't win are often coaches who haven't won yet."

Posted by: flynnie321 | May 3, 2010 8:50 PM | Report abuse

It's amazing, almost gratifying that now, after two straight seasons of the same mess, a few of you are BEGINNING to understand what Puckguru has been shouting from the rafters, literally, FOR YEARS. evtoi, butcherbaker, and pkme seem to "Get it." Kudos to cstanton1 and Cheef for being so consistently knowledgable and on - point for so long. It's comforting to know there're at least a couple of guys that understand. Keep up the good work!!

Posted by: Puckguru | May 5, 2010 8:35 AM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

 
 
RSS Feed
Subscribe to The Post

© 2010 The Washington Post Company