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Up and Running

Good Morning. The technical issues that prevented me from blogging the past two days appear to have been resolved.

It's really too bad the outage happened when it did, because there's been so much to talk about the past 48 hours. Oh well, hopefully you've kept up through my game stories.

Anyway, Bruce Boudreau and the Caps are taking today off. Well deserved if you ask me.

When they get back at it tomorrow night against Buffalo, Alexander Semin should be back in the lineup after missing the past two games with the sprained ankle that's dogged him all year. When I asked him how he felt last night, he smiled, winked and said, "Good."

As for me, I'm planning to write a story for tomorrow's paper on Ben Clymer's experience with Boudreau in Hershey. I interviewed Clymer on Friday after the Bears downed the Phantoms, 2-1, at Wachovia Center. He seemed to be in good spirits, but obviously he's itching to get back to the bigs.

That's it for now.

By Tarik El-Bashir  |  November 25, 2007; 10:10 AM ET
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Next: The Gift of Gab


Semin always responds "Good" whenever I ask him how the ankle feels. I hope he feels the ankle has healed to make a fourth comeback. We don't want to lose him long-term, but it would be prudent to let it heal fully now. I guess the choice is his and if he does feel "good", I hope he makes an impact for this team.

Posted by: Tom | November 25, 2007 10:42 AM | Report abuse

Good morning, and thanks Tarik.

It's weird, I take for granted the infos/discussions coming from this blog, When it's down, I miss it a lot. Especially yesterday, there was so much to talk about :D

Good news about Semin. Wonder where he'll fit in the lineup.

I think it's smart that they have the day off today. I bet BB is eager to talk/skate more with the guys, but it would good today, I'm happy he sees that.

Posted by: mauree | November 25, 2007 10:48 AM | Report abuse


Any idea how long it might be before BB is told to "find a place to live?"

Posted by: dogdaze | November 25, 2007 11:03 AM | Report abuse

Thanks, Tarik... I thought you were taking long deserved break for Thanksgiving day... :-)

Posted by: alexovetjkin | November 25, 2007 11:04 AM | Report abuse

The BBB line is playing great...I hope Semin's return does not force Bradley out of the line-up.

Posted by: jon | November 25, 2007 11:05 AM | Report abuse

It's great to actually see us do something on the PP. Green is looking good out there.

Can anybody remember ever seeing Shultz hit someone? I don't think that b.s. roughing call he drew (which was more of a love tap) 5-6 games ago counts.

Posted by: Steve R | November 25, 2007 11:07 AM | Report abuse

Posted by: Anonymous | November 25, 2007 11:09 AM | Report abuse

Posted by: Anonymous | November 25, 2007 11:15 AM | Report abuse


Interesting comments from Bruce Garrioch,

All Capitals GM George McPhee did by firing coach Glen Hanlon was buy time. The whisper is owner Ted Leonsis has already initiated the search for a new GM and all McPhee is doing is keeping the seat warm. Don't be surprised if former No. 1 pick Brian Lawton gets a look. Lawton was an agent with Octagon Hockey, but stepped down to pursue an opportunity in management. Other candidates include TSN analyst Pierre McGuire and former Islanders GM Mike Milbury, who is also working for the network

Is Olaf Kolzig on the move? That's likely up to him. The veteran goaltender has been a good soldier for the Capitals, but he'll be an unrestricted free agent at the end of the season. Making $5.45 million this season, Kolzig has always maintained he wants to finish his career with one team, but there's a strong belief the Caps might give him the chance to exit. The word is Edmonton GM Kevin Lowe has been casting covetous glances in Kolzig's direction because -- among other things -- the Oilers haven't been happy with the performance of either Dwayne Roloson and Mathieu Garon.

Posted by: Anonymous | November 25, 2007 11:21 AM | Report abuse

That article in the new york post is ridiculous. One guys opinion.

All I've seen over the last three years is a kid that wants to win with all his heart, and plays like it every night. OV isn't going anywhere, and although I'm sure most good NHLers would like to play in Toronto, it's not like Toronto or any team that could afford him is any good either. The guy refers to Edmonton...Edmonton is miserable, and everyone that plays there wants to get out. OV is staying here, and probably for less than 10MM. I'd guess it's probably going to be a bit higher than Syds contract, but it's going to get signed and probably around the All-Star game.

Posted by: Rob | November 25, 2007 11:35 AM | Report abuse


I think finally someone (Brucey) picked up on the fact that Jeff doesn't exactly have the fire/strength/ability to be a solid defenseman in the NHL. Hopefully thats why he sat out last night. I'll take Erskine's and Jurcina's occasional lapses over him anyday.

Posted by: 425'er | November 25, 2007 11:38 AM | Report abuse

And if Kevin Lowe is "covetous" of Kolzig, he really does need to be fired.

And the Caps hiring Pierre McGuire would be sweet. I think a lot of people hate him, but I think he would be a good GM.

Posted by: Rob | November 25, 2007 11:40 AM | Report abuse

Larry Brooks: Ovechkin does not belong to the Caps.

A lot of people here are saying the same, just check the archives...

Posted by: alexovetjkin | November 25, 2007 11:57 AM | Report abuse

The Larry Brooks column in the NY Post is him expressing his dissatisfaction with the NHL's salary cap. He uses Ovechkin and the Caps as an example why, but it could just as easily been another player and team. He seems to be high on Kevin Lowe, arguably one of the worst GMs in the league. Brooks wears blinders and wishes the league only had six teams and that the NHLPA did not exist. Alarm bells should have sounded because 1) it's Larry Brooks, and 2) he gives air to more Toronto rumors, i.e., Bowman as Toronto's next GM.

In his post-game interview after last night's win over the 'Canes, Olie stated the changes have been primarily in the PP, PK and the forecheck, and that he thinks more changes will happen once BB and the Caps can get some solid practice sessions in. I was hoping for a good session today, but the Caps should get the day off to recharge and reflect, and BB no doubt needs to settle some matters back home in Hershey.

Posted by: Iceman | November 25, 2007 12:03 PM | Report abuse

Larry Brooks is an a-hole, nothing more than a gossip columnist for the New York Post. Screw you Larry.

Posted by: Pete Peeters | November 25, 2007 12:05 PM | Report abuse

Could be interesting things happening in early December when they're off for awhile.

Posted by: Greg S. | November 25, 2007 12:09 PM | Report abuse

I'm not usually terribly against gmgm, but I would like to point out one situation that is really troubling to me and clearly gmgm is to blame.

He sent Neuvirth back to plymouth so he could play on a bad team and hopefully pull out some wins for the team and get used to playing against a lot of shots or whatever.

Well, he basically was splitting time with Jeremy Smith, and eventually traded to Windsor and now gets almost no ice time. Great job Caps.

And the reason is so Cassivi could stay in Hershey, but what is the point of having a 32 year old goalie getting all your ice time in the AHL? Shouldn't that be where you send your young, potenially nhl caliber goalies to get better?

Add that to not picking up Bryzgalov (who is now 4-0 for the coyotes), and signing the worst goalie in the league to an extension (brent johnson - last year hightest GAA among all qualified goalies and 40th out of 44 in Save %) and you really get an idea of how inept the caps are in dealing with goaltender situations.

Oh, and lets not forget how much Olie makes (more than brodeur).

Posted by: Rob | November 25, 2007 12:31 PM | Report abuse

Actually, since his trade on Nov 13 Neuvirth has started every game for Windsor.

Posted by: Anonymous | November 25, 2007 12:44 PM | Report abuse

It was wonderful not seeing Schultz out there last night. I would much rather see a player get beat trying to make a hit than stand there and get beat anyway. The team looked totally reenergized last night. Clark played with alot more edge than in recent games. Keep it up guys.

Posted by: lunaticcapsfan | November 25, 2007 12:47 PM | Report abuse

OK. We definately DON"T want Mike Milbury!

Milbury has also been criticized for the many decisions he made in which payroll or orders for upper management were not factors. Many young players and prospects that Milbury traded away went on to have distinguished careers, often eclipsing those of the players he received in return. He has traded away defensemen Zdeno Chara, Wade Redden, Bryan Berard, Eric Brewer, Darius Kasparaitis, and Bryan McCabe; goalies Luongo and Tommy Salo, as well as forwards Olli Jokinen, Todd Bertuzzi, and Raffi Torres. Milbury has also come under fire for his draft day decisions such as choosing Rick DiPietro first overall in 2000 over Dany Heatley and Marian Gaborik.

Throughout Milbury's tenure as Islanders GM, fans chanted "Mike Must Go" when the team performed badly.

Posted by: Anonymous | November 25, 2007 1:23 PM | Report abuse

I don't doubt the Semin was injured but are his problems know more in his head than his ankle? He's a pretty immature kid.

Posted by: Jim | November 25, 2007 1:51 PM | Report abuse


If the Caps can't manage to sign OV to along-term deal before the end of the season, other teams will send offer sheets that will force the Caps' hand to sign OV for the absolute maximum (20% cap; about 10.3 Million).

What does this do? Well, for starters, it increases Washington's payroll by about 6 million next year for the same crappy team (AO makes about 4 right now with his reachable incentives). In addition, Semin will be making about 3.5 more next year -- the Caps are now the same team with about 9 million addeed towards the cap ceiling. With that being said, gun-shy Ted and the ultimate talent scout GMGM, will be extremely limited in terms of improving the team.

Posted by: Old Bob's Little Boy | November 25, 2007 1:59 PM | Report abuse

@ Old Bob's

Yeah but I doubt that Olie will make the same money next year. Unless he provide a stellar performance this season.

Posted by: mauree | November 25, 2007 2:03 PM | Report abuse

thats the only thing anyone should be worrying about right now, not whether or not ovechkin will be a cap next year.

Posted by: Anonymous | November 25, 2007 2:03 PM | Report abuse


Your statement is wrong. Not a lot of people are saying that. An isolated (apparently) Wizards fan posting on the Caps message board does not support what you state.

Posted by: Novaron | November 25, 2007 2:10 PM | Report abuse

What nonsense from Bruce Garrioch and the Ottawa Sun. The idea of Pierre Maguire replacing GMGM is rubbish. Maguire & GMGM are good friends who speak almost on a daily basis. I thought there was a slight chance that Maguire might replace Hanlon, but that obviously didn't come to pass. I wish these columnists would stop making up bull-crap. Good thing we have Tarik to read, he's a class act !

Posted by: red dragon | November 25, 2007 2:10 PM | Report abuse

Plain and simple, if the Caps want to be a future contender in the NHL they need to spend the money on their star player...period! This organization is so screwed up it's pathetic. We'll throw millions of dollars for a 30 something year old goaltender, but the youngest, brightest and best player on the team is going to be low balled by this front office. I'm glad the move to fire Hanlon was made, but I'm not so sure Boudreau is the right guy either. So we've won 2 in a row...I call that adrenaline. The boys put together a healthy string of 4-5 wins...then we can start looking for Boudreau's new house. I still think there are more qualified coaches available for this team, but Ted and Dick are to reluctant to make a move that would cost them money. Don't get me wrong, I'm happy the Caps have won their past two games and they've been fun to watch. But, the team still has a lot to prove.

Posted by: Mitch | November 25, 2007 2:12 PM | Report abuse


How would you know that Semin is "immature"? Do yo know him? Talk to him? No.......I didn't think so. True, he's young, but that's about all we know. Get over it. He's injured. Not much anyone can do about that.

Posted by: jwh37 | November 25, 2007 2:12 PM | Report abuse


Your statement is wrong. Not a lot of people are saying that. An isolated (apparently) Wizards fan posting on the Caps message board does not support what you state.

Posted by: Novaron | November 25, 2007 2:12 PM | Report abuse

Never, ever cite a Garrioch article as a source of credible information. EVER! I don't think he has once been correct in one of those ramblings. The only thing interesting about that article is that the Sun continues to print his nonsense.

Posted by: Steve | November 25, 2007 2:17 PM | Report abuse

@Jim: you better watch it with that Semin comment. You might have to face the wrath of Puckguru. :)

Posted by: keef | November 25, 2007 3:06 PM | Report abuse

Please note, I did not write that Semin is immature (yet another Jim). I think that he is coming back from a bad ankle sprain and making sure that his come back does not prolong the injury. I imagine that AS is going to be in and out of the line-up until his ankle is totally healed. Right now he takes a game or two off so as to not really screw it up. It'll be great to have him back against Buffalo with this team attacking instead of sitting back waiting for the other team to take the game to them.

Posted by: JIM | November 25, 2007 3:08 PM | Report abuse

I think winning makes the ankle heal faster :D

Posted by: mauree | November 25, 2007 3:16 PM | Report abuse

It's hard to say whether we'll lose OV or not. On one hand, his main motivations may be a shot at the Stanley, which he isn't going to get with this team for at least a year or two.

On the other hand, he's the absolute, undisputed star player of the Caps. I'm pretty sure he won't get the same hero worship if he played with the Sens or the Red Wings.

Anyway, the new Caps look good out there. I wonder how long that'll last; will we get three games in a row, then go on a 3 win, 15 loss rut again? Hope not, but, hey, this is the Caps we're talking about.

Posted by: MikeZ | November 25, 2007 3:30 PM | Report abuse

And, on the Larry Brooks article:
The Caps were irrelevant before the lockout?

This, coming from a guy whose team didn't make it to post-season 7 times in a row before the lockout? (Unless he's an Islanders fan. Then his team didn't qualify 7 times in a row, then choked in the first round 3 times before the lockout...)

Posted by: MikeZ | November 25, 2007 3:37 PM | Report abuse

It's a tired discussion. We have Ovie. If we lose him it's because Ted didn't want to pay for him.

ESPN has a new article up about the top 10 "nightmare" contracts. Nyles was featured as one of them, making 5mil through the 2010-11 season.

Some tough choices are going to have to be made about where the cash goes, especially if Ted is not feeling generous.

Posted by: keef | November 25, 2007 3:37 PM | Report abuse

i disagree w/ other jim too. semin is my current favorite cap.

Posted by: jim* | November 25, 2007 3:40 PM | Report abuse

If Sasha Semin indeed does return tommorow, it'll be very enlightening to see who Bruce B. sits. If I were making the decision, it'd be Pettinger. No question. He's played the part of "The Invisible Man" all year. Methinks he should ride the pines for several games. Maybe that would stoke his fire, and help him to find the passion, grit, and enthusiasm that his performance thusfar, has certainly lacked.

Posted by: Puckguru | November 25, 2007 3:41 PM | Report abuse

I don't understand why anyone would pay attention to what Larry Brooks says. I usually read his Sunday column, but just for entertainment purposes. There's really no point in taking him seriously. Did you guys notice that he basically just ignored the concept of the Caps being able to match any offer made to Ovechkin? In that sense, yes, Ovechkin does belong to the Caps. But it doesn't help Brooks' point, so he just ignored it. And I love the part about how the only reason Ovechkin plays for the Caps is because they won the lottery. Isn't that the way it always works? No drafted player gets to pick his team. How did the Penguins get Crosby, after all?

Garrioch is just as bad. McPhee might very well be fired, but Garrioch doesn't have any inside information about it, no matter what he claims. I mean, seriously. Mike Milbury? Ted might not be all that smart when it comes to running a hockey team, but no one is that dumb.

Posted by: norske | November 25, 2007 4:16 PM | Report abuse

I really love Semin's game. Great passer. But I am worried that if he doesn't have a strong presence around him he is going to sour. From what I have seen at practice, games, etc. he seems to be a Jagr in training. Tons of talent but weak. I sure hope that I am wrong.

Posted by: kenwood | November 25, 2007 4:32 PM | Report abuse

"I don't understand why anyone would pay attention to what Larry Brooks says."

The same reason anyone would pay attention to what Eklund says. Eklund's got contacts telling him Semin is going to a Canadian team (pick one: whatever fantasy team you're putting together in your head).

Pierre Maguire's one of the reasons the NHL broadcasts on NBC suck. "Joe Sakic just skated by me!"

"Hey, you have to shoot the puck at the net to score!"

"Hey guys! all the players are exiting the ice. The period must be over."

Posted by: Iceman | November 25, 2007 4:35 PM | Report abuse

Old Bob's Little Boy, what you said is true, but what does that have to do with anything? Obviously that is the case, but that would be the same with any team that signs him. Of course he is going to be expensive.

And I don't really think the caps need to add talent, they just need to play the guys they already have in juniors/ncaa/europe.

Posted by: Rob | November 25, 2007 4:56 PM | Report abuse

LOL. alexovetjkin, I like the way you push your own blog.
But quoting Larry Brook's article and one of the blogger here... well, it leaves a lot of room from improvement.
Just because a guy is paid to write his opinion it does not make him an authority. And one blogger's opinion does represent all the Caps' fans.
But keep it up.

Posted by: Joe | November 25, 2007 5:08 PM | Report abuse

I'm happy that we have to "make space" for Semin. 4 days ago we had the opposite problem... so many player sucked that we didn't have enough for two lines lol.

Posted by: mauree | November 25, 2007 5:35 PM | Report abuse

My previous comment was exaggerating and provocative of course :D

By the way, here's a clip of the movie Slap Shot where our coach made an appearance. There are more clips on youtube... I'm not sure if I can recognize our coach lol

Posted by: mauree | November 25, 2007 5:54 PM | Report abuse


Guess you missed the game last night. Pettinger played well, nice moves, great hustle. Did look tired in the 3rd, however, though he wasn't the only one.

Posted by: 121 K | November 25, 2007 5:55 PM | Report abuse

here's the movie trailer man I want to watch this movie now lol

Posted by: mauree | November 25, 2007 5:56 PM | Report abuse

I sure would love to see Semin back in the line up tomorrow!

Posted by: Chris | November 25, 2007 5:58 PM | Report abuse

RE: Semin, where to begin?!? There is SO much to say!! First, I have to agree - he is my favorite forward. He is an amazing, skilled player. However, you have to admit that anyone who throws the puck in frustration during regulation play (not once, but twice last season!) is a bit immature. But that has nothing to do with his injury - I would guess they just pushed it too hard, too fast. So I am a little concerned that he is coming back AGAIN after two games - I hope he is really healed, otherwise this could happen ALL season. Ugh.

Posted by: Boo! | November 25, 2007 6:00 PM | Report abuse

I thought that was hilarious when Semin threw the puck at the net and hit the crossbar in Toronto. What made it even funnier was when Chad Kilger was crying to the refs like a wimp

Posted by: Jleftwing97 | November 25, 2007 6:12 PM | Report abuse

Guys, Gals, et al,
Making room for Sash is a good thing. Do we want to hoist?? Isn't that the goal?? Skill wise, I think Brads is equal to Flash but with more heart, grit, fist, and chin. Sit Flash.
Right now, Ruff and other teams on our short list are looking to do some old time hockey. Brads skating WITH Sasha has to be consider.

Posted by: BernieWolfeFan | November 25, 2007 6:13 PM | Report abuse

The answer to your question regarding Bryz maybe in the Ottawa sun article, incase you cannot link here is the comment below. If this is the case, my question is Anaheim and Phoenix got something, what did gmgm do for Washington? I guess the answer is the same he has done for the past ten years, NOTHING! Also in that article more proof that gmgm is "DEADMAN WALKING". Dale Hunter and the Boy's can't get here soon enough!

RUMOURS DU JOUR: Did Ducks GM Brian Burke really give away G Ilja Bryzgalov on waivers? The story making the rounds is the Ducks agreed to take D Brian Sutherby from the Caps for a second-round pick so McPhee would pass on Bryzgalov. That allowed the Coyotes to pick up the netminder off waivers. The belief is Phoenix GM Don Maloney will send something Anaheim's way at the trade deadline when the Ducks have a little more money to spend.

Posted by: someone else who knows | November 25, 2007 6:53 PM | Report abuse

Sasha, Sasha, SAHSHA!
The fact that Semin got BAG skated at yesterdays pre-game is most likely an indication that his ankle is Not the problem. Maybe it's his desire. I hope that the new change wakes this guy up. This ankle injury is looking more and more as a convenience for this guy.

Posted by: someone else who knows | November 25, 2007 7:03 PM | Report abuse

So is Semin riding out the year for his duckets to kick in? I/we guess he figures the season's a wash so save the cuts and bruises for '08/'09? Is he being realistic or just the "8" anti-christ dichotomy?

These are issues GMGM could/would not deal with but we are expressing them.

Do you manage people during the day? I do...

Are you listening Ted? Geez...

Posted by: BernieWolfeFan | November 25, 2007 7:26 PM | Report abuse

@ 121 K,
You are mistaken. Not only did I see last night's, I've seen every game, thusfar this season. And, as far as I'm concerned, Pettinger's lack of production merits a prolonged sit in the pressbox. He's played a regular shift in every game this year. At this precise moment, his stats read : GP - 23, G - 1, A - 2. That averages out to slightly less than one point every six games. Where I come from, that's considered to be unacceptable, and inadequate performance. YOU continue to be impressed with his, "Nice moves." No one's being judged by their "Style points" other than you, that is. IT'S PRODUCTION THAT COUNTS. And, thusfar his has been woefully nonexistent.

Posted by: Puckguru | November 25, 2007 7:44 PM | Report abuse

2nd question- Yes I do. And I'll say give an inch and some take more than a mile.
1st question- I think your right.

re.Ted listening- 1 down many more to go!

Posted by: someone else who knows | November 25, 2007 7:50 PM | Report abuse

Not sure why that rumor re Bryzgalov matters. Why does Brian Burke care if the Caps claim him? That would actually seem better for him as Caps are in eastern conference?

Posted by: Caps Fan in MD | November 25, 2007 7:54 PM | Report abuse

It just shows how inept gmgm is. Over his head, thats all.

Posted by: someone else who knows | November 25, 2007 7:58 PM | Report abuse

The fact that that Ottawa Sun article lists Sutherby as a defenseman makes me think it's not credible...

Posted by: Whiter Mage | November 25, 2007 9:10 PM | Report abuse

2 out of 3 JIM's agree -- Semin is a darn good hockey player. He and OV are great friends which is very important for team chemistry. AS resigning is a good indicator that OV will also sign (not a garuntee, but a sign).
Ditch the conspiracy theories about trades and goalies not here; enjoy the second and hopefully much longer winning streak. BB is a great coach who expects a lot from his athletes and knows hockey -- enough to be in the greatest hockey movie ever (not that there are many to choose from, what Mystery Alaska and the other stinker with Rob Lowe, yikes)

Posted by: JIM | November 25, 2007 9:15 PM | Report abuse

Jim - AMEN!! (Or was it JIM?!?) As BB said, hockey is hockey and men are men - he has been a winning coach before; no reason to think he cannot pull it off here. I for one am willing to give him a chance ... after all, he is off to a good start!

Posted by: Boo! | November 25, 2007 9:22 PM | Report abuse

Oh man...JIM, you forgot the greatest hockey franchise of all time. The Mighty Ducks.

Posted by: keef | November 25, 2007 9:25 PM | Report abuse


now that my finger is off the panic button can I start using the "P" word on this blog again????

Posted by: LIVINIT | November 25, 2007 10:24 PM | Report abuse

LIVINIT - playoffs? if so, we've got a long way to go ...

Posted by: Boo! | November 25, 2007 10:33 PM | Report abuse


NO! There's a huge crater that the Caps have to dig out of first before it can start the climb into contention.


From an article on what teams need now that 1/4 of the season is over.

"Washington: It's possible that the coaching change will make a difference in the Capitals' play, but they could still use improved depth up front and on the blueline."

Now, GMGM. Didn't you address this during the off-season with UFA's? Or didn't you draft well enough?

Posted by: Greg S. | November 25, 2007 11:10 PM | Report abuse

@someone else who knows

Thanks - I did see that article and it made me angry so I didn't post right away. Now that I've collected myself, here's my thoughts.

1) The article confirms once and for all that the Caps could have claimed Bryzgalov if they wanted him. Therefore, they didn't want him.

2) Not only did they not want him, they didn't want him so badly that they entered into a ridiculous deal instead of just claiming him.

3) I don't want to hear any more bitc-ing from Kolzig, about anything. By actively avoiding this deal to bring in a 27-year-old goalie just entering the prime of his career, McPhee is telling Kolzig, "you're my guy." If this doesn't work out, they'll both be gone next season. So shut up and win some games.

4) Bryzgalov has won four straight games for Phoenix. PHOENIX! Quick -- name five Coyotes.. I dare you.


Posted by: Oneal | November 26, 2007 12:48 AM | Report abuse

I say we start the "Fire McPhee!" chants if/when the team starts losing. Anything we can do to speed his departure would be beneficial, yes?

While Ted can take responsibility for the Jags contract and Cassidy hiring, McPhee wanted Hanlon all along - and look how that turned out, plus all the holdouts we've endured, the projects, the Sykora fiasco, the RESUTS - no play-off's or first round exits EVERY YEAR since the fluke cup run in 98.

Ted, it's time to stand up and stop the marketing and get someone in here who knows how the heck to manage a team!

Posted by: Jaymagz | November 26, 2007 1:17 AM | Report abuse

'98 was no fluke...the right players stepped up at the right time and once we reached the finals, we were grossly outclassed by the Red Wings b/c the Caps showed them too much respect.

Posted by: Jleftwing97 | November 26, 2007 1:53 AM | Report abuse

I'm missing something - what did Kolzig say that was so bad/off?

Posted by: Boo! | November 26, 2007 7:12 AM | Report abuse


Game two in Detroit ended the series. Esa Tikkanen had a break away and blew it. Would have put the Caps up 4 to 2 in the third if I remeber correctly and would have returned to DC 1 game to 1. Instead we got swept.

Posted by: gaweferstud | November 26, 2007 8:34 AM | Report abuse

@Keef -- how could I forget the Mighty Ducks franchise? I know, because I wanted to. Ugh, Disney, hockey, waterfowl, and Emilio Estavez, I still cringe at the thought -- only hockey should be on that list. Happy Gilmore and Slapshot (not SS2, ugh worse than Caddyshack2) should be considered hockey movies -- yes, Happy Gilmore had more good hockey humor than all of the MD movies put together.

Posted by: JIM | November 26, 2007 9:31 AM | Report abuse

It's a pretty typical food chain scheme for struggling teams. Shake up the lines, demote/promote a player, and then it's time to sack the coach. The next step is to go after the General Manager. So yeah, I'm sure McPhee is probably sweating bullets right now. His signings haven't really panned out (Kozlov just hasn't performed well his entire career, and Poti isn't really a top-3 defenceman).

Larry Brooks writes for the NY Post; I'm sure that he feels that it would be a good thing for the league if Ovechkin were to ply his trade in a major market (New York, Toronto, Montreal, etc.), but he is under contract, and the Caps have the ability to match any offer he gets. My guess is that Brooks didn't talk to Ovechkin. Why would Brooks want a cap? It's "unfair" (in his mind) to big-market teams like NYR.

As to Kevin Lowe...he took an 8-seeded Edmonton to a game 7 of the final (and if Roloson hadn't blown his knee out they'd have probably won) and has won several Cups as a player. The Caps should be so lucky to have someone of his calibre. Okay, so it's not exactly year-round golf weather, but the people support the team.

Posted by: Patrick | November 26, 2007 9:31 AM | Report abuse

Boy: What a bunch of whiners you guys are. why would ovechkin want to stay in that mess in washington? can someone tell me the last time mcphee made the playoffs?

Posted by: Al | November 26, 2007 9:49 AM | Report abuse

You a Pitt fan Al?

Posted by: Steve R | November 26, 2007 9:55 AM | Report abuse

I think the the Ovechkin deal is comming down to inscentives and other "creative" ways to pay him that are not part of his actual salary. There is more involved with him probably than just the main $$ toward the cap. My hope is that this is waht is taking longer to work out.

As far as the matching offers - is this correct?? If a team made him an offer, the caps can can match but it will be for the same $$ and the length of the contract. So if Toronto offered 10mil and 10 years - we can match, but they could also offer 10mil and 1 year which would make OV's stay in Washington shorter??

As for the Brooks article. Sounds a little bitter. The Rangers haven't exactly been lighting it up either. The fans that the caps do have are very passionate about their team and the sport, so I don't take a whole lot into consideration what he says. It's his opinion. The only truth to his article is that he would recieve more attention/recognition for being in a bigger market team - but OV is a great player no matter where he plays. He deserves the same recognition no matter what team he plays for IMO.

Posted by: cs | November 26, 2007 10:03 AM | Report abuse

Also look at the source with the Brooks article -- the NY Post, yet another Murdoch tabloid rag built on sensationalism, not credible journalism. Tarik would never write the crap that Brooks writes with regularity. Murdoch and Newscorp are about circulation through sensationalism, not integrity. So figure that Brooks is writing based on getting a rise out of his audience, not from actually looking to credible sources.

Posted by: JIM | November 26, 2007 10:13 AM | Report abuse

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