Found March 04, 2012 on
Storming the Crease:
It's been almost a week since GM George McPhee decided to stay pat at the trading deadline. Since then, the Washington Capitals barely beat the New York Islanders and were crushed by the New Jersey Devils. Hardly a ringing endorsement that this team is built for the playoffs.
But there could be mitigating factors here. McPhee recently stated
that he's not going to negotiate with Alex Semin or Dennis Wideman until after the season -- pretty much ensuring that the entire season will transpire for the first time in recent memory without any trades, signings or extensions. This could be an indication that owner Ted Leonsis has told McPhee to stay the course or could mean that McPhee's stay with the organization is about to end.
In the meantime, the more games that transpire, the more uncertainty seems to develop. There is no steady conviction from the team, and the call-ups from Hershey seem to increase by the week.
With less than 20 games to go, the Caps are out of playoff position and will be fighting until the bitter end to qualify for the postseason -- something that seemed to be a foregone conclusion when the season began.
In my season preview
, I stated the team's worst-case scenario: "As in previous seasons, there's always the possibility that this group is a disaster, injuries hit like wildfire and the team falls apart -- leading to Boudreau's firing. Doubtful but possible
It seems that this has become the truth, and going into the summer (one that might follow a non-playoff season), the questions will grow louder and the uncertainty more probable.
BEST OF MAXIM
AROUND THE WEB
At various points this season, Washington Capitals coach Dale Hunter has buried veteran players.He made winger Mike Knuble a regular habitant of the press box. Roman Hamrlik and John Erskine sat out as the NHL trade deadline neared, but GM George McPhee didn’t move them.So still they sit, wearing street clothes while watching their team play.Hunter benched goaltender Tomas Vokoun...
from Capitals Insider at the Washington Post, Post columnist Thomas Boswell was asked during today’s lengthy live Q&A what he thinks of Capitals captain Alex Ovechkin’s apparent “‘Good 8’ holding pattern,” as one reader put it — no longer great, not developing or adjusting.
His answer follows, and you can read the rest of the chat here.
I assume the Great Eight...
from Chuck Gormley of CSNWashington, Calling it a “benching” or “matching lines” is getting caught up in semantics.
Fact is, Capitals coach Dale Hunter sent Alex Ovechkin over the boards just once in a 12-minute span after his offensive zone giveaway led to the Flyers’ only goal in a 1-0 loss Sunday night.
It should be pointed out that Ovechkin’s linemates, Marcus Johansson...
"There is no silver lining in losing a hockey game at this time of year."
Such was the attitude of Matt Hendricks in the locker room following another demoralizing loss for the Washington Capitals, this time at the hands of the Philadelphia Flyers on Sunday inside Verizon Center.
The Capitals were shut out for the second consecutive home game on Sunday...
from Chuck Gormley of CSNWashington, Dale Hunter finds himself at a crossroads in his first year as an NHL coach.
Does he brush aside Friday night’s 5-0 loss to the New Jersey Devils as just one team taking advantage of its chances and the other team getting stoned by a goalie on top of his game?
Or does he believe what was said in the locker room after the game – that there...
The big names are still there, the big time talent is still there so why are Washington Capitals out of the playoff picture and fading fast as March begins?You don't have to know hockey to know what is happening with the Caps because the Caps don't have a hockey problem as much as they have a leadership and identity problem. Inconsistency of that magnitude usually begins...
MINI-PREVIEW 10 AM EST
Looking for their first back-to-back victories since January, the Flyers (35-21-7) head to the District of Columbia tonight to take on the enigmatic Washington Capitals ( 32-27-5). The game starts at 7 p.m. EST and will be broadcast nationally on NBC Sports Network.
This is the third of four meetings between the teams this season, and the second and final...
The Washington Capitals were on ice Monday for a practice following another depressing loss Sunday evening against the Flyers. Some updates from Kettler Capitals Iceplex:
Tomas Vokoun returned to the ice after missing the last two practices and one game (sitting on the bench, at least) because of a lower-body injury. He skated for about 20 minutes in full pads before practice...
Welcome to the Hotstove! As always, I'm your host, Travis Yost.
On Saturday, Peter Tessier of the Winnipeg Jets and Bill Meltzer of the Philadelphia Flyers joined me to discuss the most enigmatic franchise in the National Hockey League.
With a boat load of talent, a proven goaltender, and a pair of the league's most dynamic players, the Washington Capitals looked like...
Oh, how the mighty have fallen.
Alex Ovechkin has been playing the role of Harry Houdini in recent days. While the Sabres have been surging towards the eighth and final playoff spot, the Caps have been falling flat on the faces.
Great news for Sabres fans. Buffalo are 11-3-3 in the last 16 games and are playing exceptionally well right now. The news isn't so cheery for the Capitals....
“But we’ve still got 18 games. There’s a lot of hockey left. Sometimes you’re gonna lose hockey games. That’s the way it goes. So we’ve got to rebound.”
That’s what Brooks Laich told media members after the Capitals’ 5-0 loss to the New Jersey Devils on Friday.
But, while the Capitals gave up four fewer goals against the Philadelphia Flyers on Sunday—the team...
The Washington Capitals were on ice Saturday morning following their 5-0 humiliation at the hands of the New Jersey Devils on Friday night. Some updates from Kettler Capitals Iceplex:
Tomas Vokoun, who has not played in the last four games, was absent because of a lower body injury, meaning the PR director Sergey Kocharov was in goal for the skate. This helps explain why Neuvirth...
Just when the Washington Capitals appeared to be coming out of their funk this week, they put forth a terrible effort.
The Philadelphia Flyers also can't find any consistent success, but their position isn't nearly as dire.
Though Philadelphia's chances of repeating as division champion aren't as good as those of its opponent Sunday night, Washington is the one...
The Washington Capitals need to snap out of a scoring slump if they want to win a fifth consecutive Southeast Division title. Breaking a lengthy scoreless stretch against the Carolina Hurricanes would be a step in that direction.
Washington looks to avoid getting shut out for a team-record third consecutive time Tuesday night when it hosts the Hurricanes, who have blanked the Capitals...
The Flyers announced that Ilya Bryzgalov will start tonight against the Washington Capitals. A preview of tonight's matchup is here.