Originally posted on Red Light District Hockey  |  Last updated 11/15/11


The Washington Capitals made a handful of bold moves in the off-season. One of them was giving up a first round pick on draft day to pry Troy Brouwer from Chicago. The Caps acquired Brouwer not only for a boost to its secondary scoring, but for his physicality as well.

Through Monday’s action, Brouwer is ranked third in the NHL in hits (54); last year he finished fifth in the league with 262 hits. Aside from Alex Ovechkin and his rambunctious style of play, the Capitals have not had a physical presence like Brouwer’s in a long time.

“It’s something we haven’t had,” Capitals head coach Bruce Boudreau said of Brouwer’s physicality.

Capitals forward Brooks Laich added, “He’s taken our team to a new physical level. He’s a big guy and always plays through people – he doesn’t turn away and doesn’t stop.”

Though playing alongside Nicklas Backstrom and Ovechkin for most of this season, Brouwer didn’t get off to the start he would have liked offensively, as he scored just one goal in the month of October. However, Brouwer has three in six games this month and is starting to gel nicely with his team.

“I had a little bit of a slow start,” Brouwer said. “I was too worried about being a physical presence and wasn’t contributing offensively like I should be. I’ve been a bit more comfortable and getting a few more points now, so it feels like I’m picking my game up right now.”

Boudreau added, “We had a meeting (Monday) and he’s starting to feel more comfortable in his role and understands it,” Boudreau said. “I expect more from him even in the future now.”

Brouwer, 26, scored 39 goals in his final two seasons in Chicago. The 6-foot-3 power forward mentioned that the move from Chicago to Washington was a bit easier, given his role was similar with a comparable Blackhawks lineup.

“We were a big puck possession team in Chicago and I had a chance to play with Jonathan Toews and Patrick Kane. That just gives you a little more ease when you play Ovechkin and Backstrom,” Brouwer said. “Being able to play with Toews and Kane in Chicago makes it easier to make that transition, because you’re not just worried about playing with those guys; you can just settle in and play hockey.”

Along with his physical and goal-scoring potential, Brouwer’s playoff (and Cup-winning) experience with the Blackhawks was another reason the Capitals were attracted to him. The Caps are aiming high this year and going for the Stanley Cup, something the franchise has yet to win.

“He knows what it takes to win,” Capitals forward Mike Knuble said. “He’s a young player with (a Cup) and fits in with our core at the same age. When we’re on the road, he talks about it a little bit and maybe that can inspire our guys to get what he has.”

Photo credit: Chris Gordon

GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Report: ‘Multiple’ teams open to giving Noel max contract

Tiger Woods arrested on DUI charges

Report: Clippers ‘overwhelming favorite’ to keep Chris Paul

Giants owner: Signing Kaepernick would anger fans

Mike Trout to undergo MRI after suffering thumb injury

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

John Wall: Bench was cause of Wizards’ ‘downfall’

Arum says Pacquiao would fight McGregor if Mayweather won't

Aaron Judge hits first grand slam of his career

David Stern: Lakers could have had Chris Paul, GM panicked

Brandon Jacobs vows to 'expose' Jim Harbaugh, get him fired

Mike Zimmer won’t retire even if right eye goes blind

The 'Hope your Cup runneth over this Memorial Day' quiz

Meet your Stanley Cup finalists: Nashville Predators

Getaway Day: There's a murderer's row in the NL West

Journey to the Stanley Cup Final: Pittsburgh Penguins

Best of Yardbarker: Ladies and gentlemen, start your engines

The Rewind: Vince Carter's graduation day celebration that wasn't

Manu Ginobili gave life to the San Antonio Spurs

Why the Indianapolis 500 is called 'the greatest spectacle in racing'

Stanley Cup Final: A David vs. Goliath matchup that's not as lopsided as it may appear

The 'More like Whiffer, Texas Ranger...amirite?' quiz

The 10 best sports docs available for streaming

Box Score 5/26: Bring on the Finals

NHL News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

The 'Hope your Cup runneth over this Memorial Day' quiz

Meet your Stanley Cup finalists: Nashville Predators

Getaway Day: There's a murderer's row in the NL West

Journey to the Stanley Cup Final: Pittsburgh Penguins

Best of Yardbarker: Ladies and gentlemen, start your engines

The 'More like Whiffer, Texas Ranger...amirite?' quiz

Stanley Cup Final: A David vs. Goliath matchup that's not as lopsided as it may appear

Manu Ginobili gave life to the San Antonio Spurs

The Rewind: Vince Carter's graduation day celebration that wasn't

The 10 best sports docs available for streaming

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker