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Tonight's Lineup

Based on the players on the ice (and their alignment), here's what tonight's lineup in Carolina should look like.

Fleischmann-Nylander-Kozlov
Giroux-Perreault-Fehr
Laing-Steckel-Bradley
Osala-Beagle-A. Gordon

Cutta-Jurcina
Alzner-Schultz
Lepisto-Carlson

Machesney-Varlamov

By Tarik El-Bashir  |  September 24, 2008; 10:31 AM ET
 
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Comments

Apparently most of the big guns are being held out for the home opener tomorrow :)

Posted by: freakinandpeakin | September 24, 2008 10:37 AM | Report abuse

Conference summary

Washington: Good star players but no depth, teams will figure how to beat them. Last years play offs is about how good they are. Depth is a huge problem Washington is Tampa2.

Florida: Lost only decent player, added little. McCabe will get some goals but can't play in own end.

Canes: Trading in sticks for canes, ooooold. Staal is great but can he still improve more?

Atlanta: Management took off season off figured last year was good enough I guess.

Tampa: Strangest team in then NHL, some great talent but for some reason do not think goaltending matters. Hard to figure them out but may compete with Washington for division lead but how can they do well in the play offs with no goaltending? Mike Smith is the key.

Summary: Worst conference in hockey.

Note: I will be around this year so please roast me to death if I am wrong.


(from cbs.sportsline blogs)... is it me, or am I not understanding the whole depth thing?
http://www.sportsline.com/mcc/messages/thread/10664753

main - blog http://www.sportsline.com/mcc/messages/chrono/8999413/0/1

Posted by: 828 | September 24, 2008 10:44 AM | Report abuse

wow that guy has no clue, but I'm not putting in the effort to register on that site to respond. Yea washington has no depth...mmmkay

Posted by: TJ | September 24, 2008 10:47 AM | Report abuse

?? If neither Alzner nor Lepisto is ready I guess there could be a lack of defensive depth, but the Caps have more fwds than they know what to do with.

Posted by: honed | September 24, 2008 10:52 AM | Report abuse

Just posting my predictions because I was getting pissed from going back and forth.
Don't mind me.

Flash - Nyls - Kozzie
Osala - Aucoin - Fehr
Giroux - Perreault - Gordon
Laing - Stecks - Brads

No reason to take Laich, Morin or Joudrey extra man.

Jurcina - Schultz
Lepisto - Alzner
Carlson - Godfrey
Cutta

Posted by: 94 | September 24, 2008 10:57 AM | Report abuse

I was pretty close.....

Jschon...How bout that prayer?

Posted by: 94 | September 24, 2008 11:04 AM | Report abuse

Wow--you found a blogger with an uninformed, biased opinion?

Shocking!

Why would anyone care what some random blogger you found has to say?

Posted by: BW | September 24, 2008 11:06 AM | Report abuse

94,

Alzner growing on you yet?

Posted by: Steve R | September 24, 2008 11:06 AM | Report abuse

@Boo! (from previous thread)

THANKS! Of course if there is any chance you can make it I totally understand

Posted by: Sombrero Guy | September 24, 2008 11:12 AM | Report abuse

Really??

Osala 4th liner? In that Group?
Thought he was having a great camp?

Posted by: Comebackkono3 | September 24, 2008 11:12 AM | Report abuse

I think that post was a joke -- I just don't see how that could be taken seriously...

And yeah, that's also a testament to how deep the Caps are when you've got Osala on the 4th line when you're missing Ovechkin, Semin, Fedorov, Laich, Clark....

Wow, that's kinda eye opening, when the entire team besides the first line, Steckel and Fehr are Bears, and you can afford to leave Bouchard and Bourque off entirely and make Osala a fourth line forward. I wonder what kind of team Carolina's going to dress.

Is Machesney going to start, then?

Posted by: DrinkingPartner | September 24, 2008 11:21 AM | Report abuse

Oops, missed Brads and Laing, too, though I think Laing is probably Hershey bound.

Posted by: DrinkingPartner | September 24, 2008 11:22 AM | Report abuse

Kind of suprised no Bourque?? Maybe for another game, or has he just not been impressive.

Posted by: Grape8 | September 24, 2008 11:22 AM | Report abuse

Speaking of Alzner, it's his 20th birthday today.

Posted by: Sombrero Guy | September 24, 2008 11:22 AM | Report abuse

For the love of all that is Caps hockey, let Varlamov go the distance. Just say NO to 'Cheese'.

Posted by: Cary | September 24, 2008 11:27 AM | Report abuse

So nice to hear Tarik use the words "tonight's lineup" again...Come on October! And happy Birthday to Karl!

Posted by: TheCapitalist | September 24, 2008 11:31 AM | Report abuse

BW - just thought it was funny and decided to post. But, you make a good point, your comments mean nothing.

Posted by: 828 | September 24, 2008 11:33 AM | Report abuse

Reading way too much into the lineups of the first preseason game, it seems like Alzner's the 7th dman over Lepisto at this point.

Posted by: Section 117 | September 24, 2008 11:37 AM | Report abuse

Yeah, what's the deal with Oskar on the 4th line? And no Bouchard?

Posted by: Jordan | September 24, 2008 11:44 AM | Report abuse

I don't think that's just some random blogger, BW. Look at the URL. He writes for CBS, which means that a certain number of uninformed boneheads are going to believe this pile of smoking bull feces for no other reason than becomes it supposedly comes from an MSM-paid blogger.

I'm of two minds on commenting. The part of me that is vastly entertained when the mouths and the boneheads who believe them are utterly skunked and humiliated wars with the kinder, gentler side that believes that it's wrong to let anyone make that much of a blithering idiot of themselves and do nothing about it wars with a still third side of me that wants to march in there and stick up for my team, a pastime that while amusing isn't healthy for someone like me that is still learning and is hardly a hockey expert.

And, the thing is, he's got most of it nailed square on the money. So how did he miss Washington that badly?

Posted by: this space for rent | September 24, 2008 11:49 AM | Report abuse

Must be a Pens fan.

Posted by: Anonymous | September 24, 2008 12:05 PM | Report abuse

Blues #1 2006 draft pick out for season:

Johnson, 20, was injured during a team golf outing on Sept. 16 when his right foot got caught between the accelerator and the brake of his golf cart. The Blues had to wait for swelling in the knee to go down before a diagnosis could be made.

Posted by: 828 | September 24, 2008 12:07 PM | Report abuse

Let's be fair, it is the worst DIVISION in hockey. The Caps should win the division and make the playoffs. (Games with TB might be wild given the combined fire power and lack of defense. Goalies might come off the ice twitching like Denis Lemieux.)

I get the depth thing. We have one real proven D pair and about 2-3 high level scorers. The shutdown line is fine for what it is, but we need 3 scoring lines with the D we have. The potential is there, but potential doesn't score. Compare our 2nd D pair and 3 line to that of Detroit and tell me that they don't have more depth. (Yes, they are the best team and not illustrative of the rest of the league, but if you want to beat the best, compare yourself to them.)

Posted by: old time hockey | September 24, 2008 12:09 PM | Report abuse

Damn, why are some people getting worked up over is who is in and who is out of the line-up for the FIRST PRE-season game?
All the border line guys and regulars will get a chance I promise you,before the end of pre-season. Just chill and enjoy.

WARNING- Before it happens,we will not win all or pre-season , and probably will not win all of our regular season games (sorry but true), so when we happen to not come out with a positive outcome...please do not freak out, and start trading everyone.

Posted by: Capsfannmiss | September 24, 2008 12:10 PM | Report abuse

The way our D played the last third of the season, I am not so worried. With Poti healthy again, and with Schultz healthy and with more experience, I think we'll be solid.

Posted by: Sombrero Guy | September 24, 2008 12:13 PM | Report abuse

Capsfannmiss,

We are totally like, going to go undefeated.

Go Caps Go!!!!!!!!

Posted by: Cassi | September 24, 2008 12:16 PM | Report abuse

One of the most exciting teams last season was the Capitals, and captain Chris Clark joins NHL Live! to talk about what the team plans for an encore. The show is live (Noon-2 p.m. ET) on the new NHL Network Online.
www.nhl.com

Posted by: 828 | September 24, 2008 12:21 PM | Report abuse

For every1 who is worried our D, the numbers for last year: GA/G was 2.77 tied for 18th w/ philly... We basically have the same D except that it is healthier and more experienced, so i believe we'll rank in the top 10... So that should make us better. Next, we have a better goalie than last year. And lastly, our forwards will score more than 3 goals a game... All that = CUP... Feds will add a 4th to his collection...

Posted by: vik191 | September 24, 2008 12:21 PM | Report abuse

Here is a link for Chris Clark on nhl live:
It's happening now:

http://www.nhl.tv/team/console.jsp?catid=616&id=21039

Posted by: 828 | September 24, 2008 12:22 PM | Report abuse

Actually, if you look at it, the Caps depth really is lacking.

Look at some of the teams who are touted as having a deep lineup. There are multiple 20 goal scorers. Caps had what, maybe 2 or 3 last year?

Team will figure out how to beat them. Neutralize AO and Green and you have yourself 2-3 goals a game.

This is not saying there are not other offensive weapons but keeping those 2 off the scoreboard could be the difference. I think this year we will see if AO is able to adjust to the other team's style of play.

I think the playoffs was maybe an eye opener for the other teams around the league as a clue on how to beat the Caps

Posted by: JB | September 24, 2008 12:23 PM | Report abuse

How to beat the Caps: Run your players into the Caps goalies?

How did Philly stop Ovechkin? He had more points and 2 game winners.

Ever since Ovechkin has came into this league, he has been double teamed... and yet he has the most points and goals of anyone in those 3 years.

Oh wait, Clark and Nylander come back... is that going to hurt the Caps?

Like jmu_caps found - you know it's coming at you, the hard part is, trying to stop it.

Just as much as you think the teams will find a way to beat them... the Caps and BB will find a way to win.

Posted by: 828 | September 24, 2008 12:29 PM | Report abuse

@828

Missed Clark. Did he say anything interesting?

Posted by: Sombrero Guy | September 24, 2008 12:30 PM | Report abuse

I don't know if he has been on yet. the show is from 12-2pm. I am just watching, I have no sound.

Probably can watch it when I get home.

Posted by: 828 | September 24, 2008 12:32 PM | Report abuse

I agree with Sombrero Guy. Our D is matured and healthier and that in itself makes them better. There is a lot in this team to cause a person to have a positive outlook for the season. But heck, I am an eternal (or infernal) optimist. This is going to be fun!

Posted by: Mark | September 24, 2008 12:34 PM | Report abuse

Clark is on at 105 just so everyone knows, im listening. Hopefully nothing will come up here at work and I can still be listening then.

Posted by: Pat | September 24, 2008 12:36 PM | Report abuse

You also have to understand that this team is hungry... Comapring to teams that have "depth", Detroit had 5 20+ goal scorers(3of them played on the same line) and we had 3... Now this year we'll have alot more, you can make a good argument for OV, Semin, Clark, Nylander, Laich... Dark horses are Feds, Green, Backstrom, Kozlov(may hit the mark depending on his passion)... so bascially we'll have 5-7...

Posted by: vik | September 24, 2008 12:43 PM | Report abuse

P.S.
good luck shutting it down, you'll have to play your top 4 D the whole game =)

Posted by: vik | September 24, 2008 12:45 PM | Report abuse

Let's not get ourselves wrapped up on this stuff. Understand that most of the reporters of hockey are Canadian, so they have a bias towards Canadian players. Also, they can't stand that Carolina won the cup more times in the past 15 years than any Canadian team. So has Tampa. So has Florida.

Let them diss us and the division. We'll surprise them all again come April.

Posted by: Greg S. | September 24, 2008 12:49 PM | Report abuse

"Tonight's Lineup" -- more beautiful words have never been written.

LET'S GO CAPS!!!

Posted by: Jill | September 24, 2008 12:50 PM | Report abuse

@Jb

The same playoffs where the caps scored 5,0,3,3,3,4,2? The same playoffs where the flyers were running around chasing the caps only to have biron stand on his head?

Good luck trying to stop this offense. Sure there will have to be adjustments, but just too much firepower.

You could say the same thing about pittsburgh with crosby and malkin. How is working out trying to neutralize those 2.

Its a different league, unless you clutch ang grab good luck trying to stop the stars of this league especially when they are motivated

Posted by: O-V-P | September 24, 2008 12:50 PM | Report abuse

Great article about Ovie and the Caps from a Washington, DC/election angle in ESPN the Magazine(!):

http://sports.espn.go.com/espnmag/story?section=magazine&id=3604260

Includes a cool picture of Ovechkin in the "oval office".

Posted by: kenjab | September 24, 2008 12:52 PM | Report abuse

According to some people posting, it appears the Caps should be handed the Cup.

The only difference between this year and last, are the salaries.
Clark & Nylander being healthy means nothing, especially with the way the team played without them last year.

Posted by: Chief | September 24, 2008 12:59 PM | Report abuse

It does not matter who the lines are now or even for entire season. Switch everyone around all the time, keep the other teams guessing as it makes it hard for them to match up. The idea is to find out who plays the best with whom in June not October. Let them switch so if the lines have to be switched during the playoffs, you are not playing with someone that you have not played with during the season. Think Scotty Bowman. That is what he did all season long. Defense in another matter, that does take time to get used to one another. I hope BB put the rookies out against the other teams top lines during exibition season to see what they have.

Posted by: Rich C | September 24, 2008 1:03 PM | Report abuse

That's an awesome picture of Ovie in the 'Oval Office'. Thanks.

Posted by: Cary | September 24, 2008 1:04 PM | Report abuse

nice article...

Posted by: vik | September 24, 2008 1:05 PM | Report abuse

kanjab - that is an awesome story!!!

You know change has come when enemies are believers.

Posted by: 828 | September 24, 2008 1:07 PM | Report abuse

I'm really tired of posting it. Those "worried" about the D, go to Japers and read "In defense of Jose, the defense infront of Jose..." - done -.

I do have a question for some of you before I bug my STH Account Rep. Anyone who signed up/renewed early last year under the "Young Guns" promo, have you received your signed poster yet?

Posted by: FFS Enough | September 24, 2008 1:10 PM | Report abuse

@FFS Enough

They said that it was a mid-season gift, so I'd expect to hear more about it by December.

Posted by: keef | September 24, 2008 1:15 PM | Report abuse

keef

Thanks for the info.

Posted by: FFS Enough | September 24, 2008 1:19 PM | Report abuse

Chief no one is suggesting the cup should be handed to the caps.

You have some real issues constantly being on this board bashing the caps. Go on your teams board. You really look like you have no life constantly hanging around here. With the same old arguments.

Posted by: O-V-P | September 24, 2008 1:26 PM | Report abuse

Please don't feed Chafe.

Posted by: Mark | September 24, 2008 1:28 PM | Report abuse

I love that ESPN Magazine article! I subscribe to the mag and can't wait to get my issue, although I have already read it.

Fantastic!!

Thanks kenjab!

Posted by: CT Caps Fan | September 24, 2008 1:32 PM | Report abuse

Has anyone read the trade rumors surrounding nyls on espn.com. Another talented cap to the blackhawks? Trade talks should be surrounding feds and kozie, not nylander who has looked fully recovered and ready to go for the season. I am excited to see what the line of Clark Nyls and flash will do. I have to say that clark nyls and laich would seem to be a dominate puck hoarding line as well.

Posted by: capshsc | September 24, 2008 1:34 PM | Report abuse

STH: I got my tickets for the October 2nd shindig at Six Flags America, so be on the lookout for those too. It is an evening thing, but should be fun. The rides they named as being open are all the good rides, though I dunno about Blizzard River in October, especially after dark.

I'm a hockey fan with a coaster habit. I admit it. XD

Posted by: this space for rent | September 24, 2008 1:43 PM | Report abuse

I changed my mind, We will win ALL our games, become a icon for all teams to try and become. ROCK the RED! UNDEFEATED! What will chief do then?

Posted by: Capsfannmiss | September 24, 2008 1:43 PM | Report abuse

Who is DC Fury

Posted by: 828 | September 24, 2008 1:47 PM | Report abuse

@capshsc

Welcome to last week. We're all living life a week in the future now. Come join us.

Posted by: keef | September 24, 2008 1:49 PM | Report abuse

Has anyone who got partial season tickets recieved their tickets yet? I did the pick 11 and am wondering where my tickets are.

Posted by: Tim | September 24, 2008 1:50 PM | Report abuse

Tim:

My brother received his 6-pack tickets on Monday.

Posted by: uncatim | September 24, 2008 1:58 PM | Report abuse

828 -

Exactly. My snarky comments mean as much as that other guy's. But sorry if it came off as harsh--I'm fine with your opinion, just not some random dude who chose to be the 200th reply on a Tampa-based thread.

TSFR -

Yeah, no. That guy doesn't write for CBSSportsline. He just posted his half-assed opinion on a message board.

Posted by: BW | September 24, 2008 1:58 PM | Report abuse

I'm not worried about what ANY talking head has to say about the team until they actually step on the ice. The defense is a year older (and on my xbax, that means a lot!) The big question mark in mind this season will be goal keeping.

Now, more importantly to us die hards. If the Caps lose, do we start calling for BB's head? ;)

Posted by: Leeguru | September 24, 2008 2:04 PM | Report abuse

@ keef,

My fault, i never picked up on it from blogging and i just became and it def. wasnt posted on espn.com last week.

Posted by: capshsc | September 24, 2008 2:09 PM | Report abuse

Yes, Clark, Nyls and a full season of Semin will halp a lot. But....

The D is still suspect. "I'm Moe Green" is a good pair. Poti and ? will be fine (Schultz, probably, maybe Alzner). Then what? The third pair, who admittedly won't see much ice time in third period, is a disaster waiting to happen. Erskine/Jurcina/?

And, let's not forget Jose. The Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde style will probably frustrate many of us over the next year.

Posted by: old time hockey | September 24, 2008 2:14 PM | Report abuse

This will be the year where the team manager finally gets fired.

Posted by: Chief | September 24, 2008 2:18 PM | Report abuse

Lets talk 20 goals depth

We could have 8, 20 goal scoring caps...

And remember last year, we didn't really start scoring goals til after Thanksgiving.

New Coach = More goals this year


Alexander Ovechkin (65 goals last yr)
Alexander Semin (26 goals last year on pace for 34 if not out for injuries)

Brooks Laich (21 goals last yr)
Clark (30 goals when healthy 2 yrs ago and on pace for 23 goals last year if not out for injuries)

Nylander (26 goals when healthy 2 yrs ago and on pace for 23 goals last year if not out for injuries)

Green (just 2 goals shy of 20 last yr)
Kozlov (just 4 goals shy of 20 last yr)
Backstrom (6 goals shy of 20 last yr his Rookie Year!!)

Posted by: Rong Capsfan | September 24, 2008 2:30 PM | Report abuse

Who said my line would be a disaster?

Posted by: John "sexy lumberjack" Erskine | September 24, 2008 2:31 PM | Report abuse

@ old time hockey: Re: Theodore, I'd encourage you to read Japers' article that brought some surprising stats to the table on this.

And as far as the SE conference goes, since realignment, the breakdown of teams from each division that have represented the East in the finals is as follows:

4 ATL: NJ (3), Pitts
3 SE: Carolina (2), TB
2 NE: Buffalo, Ottawa

I'm not going to deny that the SE pretty much faces whoever makes it out of the Atlantic alive sometimes, but let's see Montreal and Ottawa start winning the Cup again before we start saying the SE sucks for yet another year.

/flame on

Posted by: Section 117 | September 24, 2008 2:43 PM | Report abuse

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