Tag Archives: opinion

Caps coverage from yours truly

7 Aug

I write…anyone remember that?

Well,  I’ve been on a hiatus for a while now due to personal reasons. But I’m back and ready to cover the Caps from a far as I head to Radford University in about two weeks as a freshman. I won’t be able to cover every game seeing as I’ll be acclimating to college life, but I’ll write the occasional post with my ever entertaining opinions on the Caps and their defense (which looks surprisingly strong this season).

I also hope to be writing for the sports section for my school’s paper, the Tartan. Hopefully you can catch my written word over there as well. This post was merely to inform my dear readers, the next will be my thoughts on the Caps defense and where I see them come playoffs (yeah, I’m thinking ahead).

Thanks to those who have been reading ever since I started, I truly appreciate it.

I’ll take my 50 goal scorer to go, please

24 Dec

As a Caps fan, this season hasn’t exactly been all that and a bag of chips, more like that big bag of chips you buy that’s filled with 75% air and the chips are all broken.
If Mike Green (the Caps secret ingredient, apparently) being out wasn’t enough, Ovechkin’s playing like Chimera and Chimera’s playing like Ovechkin, and Alex Semin’s playing like his one way ticket to the KHL can’t come fast enough.
Oh yeah, and they had their Coach (who took them from rags to riches, in case you’d forgotten) was fired because Ovie was being an asshat and didn’t want to listen to him (damn it, Ovie, the League’s figured you out. Adapt ya idiot!).
What a year for the Caps, eh?

In short, the Caps can only go up from this point, right? They have the ability and know how to do great things. The question is, do they really want it?

this is going to be my last post until after the new year seeing as I’m going to Miami for Christmas Break! I hope you guys have an awesome Holiday Season and get what you want from Santa.

The Schultz bonanza

19 Dec

Nope, I’m not talking about the tv show from the late 50’s, but the Caps silent defenseman, Jeff Schultz. Schultz is a defensive D-man by trade, preferring to stay in his own end and help the goalie more than go to the net and get goals.

That’s not a bad thing, it’s actually a very good thing. The Caps have had a constant struggle the past few years trying to find good defensemen who are more defensive minded, than offensive like Carlson and Green.

Schultz has been having a pretty good season. Again, he isn’t supposed to be a flashy in your face kind of player, but he gets the job done by, for the most part, getting pucks out of the zone. So what’s with all the commotion?

Some say Hunter picked the line combinations out of a hat, I like to think he stole Project Runways tasselled black bag to put together the lines. Either way, Jeff Shultz appeared on the first line today in practice.

While this may be a shock and cause you to spin in circles, don’t you remember back in the good ‘ole days when the Caps won the Presidents Trophy and were supposed to win the Cup? yeah, Schultz was on first line with Mike Green. The entire time. Did anyone blow a gasket? I think not.

If anything, Hunter was trying out new line combos to find that magic “spark” that’s been elusive for some time now. If it works, does it really matter whose on which line? You win the same either way. Or lose…

My two cents; Schultz is a good defensive minded D who plays hard. He might not be a first liner in Washington (although I like to think he could on a different team), but he’s definitely a solid second liner.

What has become of sports journalists

4 Dec

As a, hopefully, future sports journalist, I am extremely disappointed in some of the people covering this field. Specifically hockey.

People come to you, journalists, for fairly objective and professional stories about games, players, and the like. When you get away from that and start  writing biased stories with no true fact basis, slandering a player’s name. What are people really going to think of journalist? Every single person with a press pass has the responsibility to represent this field to the best of their abilities and someone fell very short.

If you hadn’t already heard, there was a piece written about Alex Ovechkin. This piece was pertaining to his recent drop off in production and the possibility of PED’s or steroids being the reason.

Whether or not this is true, I found it extremely unprofessional to post a story about a player, slandering his name when you don’t even have cold hard facts. All this 800 word post has is speculation. Not one drop of truth in the seeming sea of lies.

I’m not targeting the writer of this article. I am targeting what journalism has been reduced to. A bunch of men and women sitting around coming up the most fantastical lies to get the most views and reads. Isn’t that yellow journalism? Is this what you want your name on, a bunch of good sounding lies for publicity?

 If this is what sports journalism has become, then I ashamed for ever wanting to be a part of it.

Grab your sacks, Caps fans

28 Nov

We have a new, back breaking coach in town. Who will hopefully break some Russian ass (not naming who…) and have his players show up. His mname is Dale Hunter, legendary ex-Capital who quit his job as an OHL coach for the London Knights to come coach his former team.

Was this the right move by McPhee? Business wise, possibly. Boudreau, had lost his players. As much as I hate to admit it, no one’s listening because Ovie’s not listening. Bruce is a good coach and it hasn’t been all his fault at all for the Caps early exits and losing streaks. He can’t get on the ice and play for them, they have to actually show up and play with some god damn heart. Which they haven’t done the past few years and haven’t done recently. He can change the lines, curse, just do whatever! But if the players don’t decide to play themselves he may as well be speaking gibberish while doing the hula. The players aren’t motivated and it shows.

Emotions wise? Bruce was like Bald Santa, for christ sake! How do you not love the guy? He worked hard, it wasn’t his fault the players stopped listening. Also, it’s impossible not crack a smile at him doing bird calls or jazzercise. The guy was a total teddy bear who wanted to win. He just played “good cop” for too long.

What can Hunter expect as Coach of the both best and worst team in the league? With the Caps level of caring so sky-high lately, I don’t expect much. Here are some of my predictions, call me crazy;
1. Caps don’t make the Playoffs, they finally fell off the cliff they’ve been edging closer to and the coach really wasn’t the determining factor in their failure. The players were.

2. GMGM get’s the ax, Hunter was his last resort and will fall through like a cheap pie crust.

3. Boudreau will (somewhat) quickly find another coaching job and will win the Cup before the Caps. (While I get to give Ovie a nasty smile and say “this is what you wanted” >:))
4. Semin and Ovie get traded over the off-season. Ovie hopefully to a the Blues (they need a team player like him, don’t they?) and Semin to a frozen hole in the KHL.

5. All players, coaches, and fans alike  lost (at least) a little respect of Ovie for pulling that dick move of getting his Coach fired for wanting him to adapt and become a team player.

Thoughts and comments on my crazy predictions?

Oh those Broadway Blue Shirts…

25 Nov

The Caps lost to the Rangers with an embarrassing score of 6-3. To be quite honest, there really wasn’t a good facet of the game. No one really played all that spectacularly. That is, on the Caps.

The Rangers really kicked some Washington tuchus in the second period. Not that it’s surprising, the Caps have this knack of letting other teams roam free during the second period. Tonight was a prime example, as the Rangers scored an impressive four goals. While Washington only managed to tally two, via Brouwer and Carlson.

The Caps defensive coverage was forgettable, as usual. They had no presence whatsoever and during a few goals, a couple of select players were just standing there letting the puck go in. The Caps know what needs to change here, but they clearly haven’t put into place how they’re going to do it. Let’ s hope it’s soon, because what’s happening now is clearly not working for anyone (but the opposing team) involved.

Their offense wasn’t abominable, but when playing against the likes of Richards, Callahan, Gaborik and Lundvquist, mediocre isn’t going to cut it. Not to mention the (depressingly) usual penalties by the usual suspects, when one of your teams best Penalty Killers is out, is it really a good idea to take stupid penalties?  The Caps were simply not capitalizing on their (rare) opportunities, due to the fact the Rangers were simply out playing them. It’s never a good sign when the road team is out playing and capitalizing on chances more than the home team. 

As far as Neuvirth, it isn’t entirely his fault the Caps lost. Considering a goalie is only as good as his defense, he did have a good excuse for a majority of the goals. But a few of the goals that went in should have been stopped by him, crappy defense or no crappy defense. Which, in his case, was crappy defense. Goalies can’t win games by themselves, fellows.

All in all, the Caps definitely have areas they need to work on. As exhibited by their 6-3 loss, but it’s not something you can just blanket on one or two people. A team is a team; you win as one and, unfortunately, lose as one. Don’t use Ovechkin or Boudreau as the easy scapegoat. Look at the entire teams performance. They’re all accountable.

Much ado about Semin

21 Nov

After the Caps embarrassing game against the Leafs ,you can’t slice or dice that game any other way. Boudreau has decided something needs to change (I’m glad someone’s listening to me!)and his idea of change is to bench Semin. And by bench I mean make sit in the press box and eat nachos.

I don't think he likes nachos...

Was this a good decision by Boudreau? I like to think so, Boudreau’s message clearly wasn’t getting across before, so if making him eat nachos for one night works, and he plays up to the caliber of talent he has, it was totally worth it. You can’t disagree with me, Sasha fans.

My two cents?

Semin is a really, really talented player and I truly respect him for that. But his (sometimes) seeming lack of effort is very frustrating to watch. Especially when it looks like everyone else is playing hard.

Another important note I’d like to point out, Semin did score a goal in our game against Winnipeg. That was great, but if you look at his play outside of that game, you’ll realize something has to change.
Whether he gets a wake up call or it’s the rest of the team. Anyway you slice or dice it, somebody or something has to get the Caps refocused, energized, and ready to compete at their highest caliber.

Canada 3, Caps 0

18 Nov

Canada pulled another win on the Caps yet again. But I must note, and to quote the great Holden Caufield, Semin played like a “sexy bastard” during the first period. And he wasn’t the only one, if hockey games were only 20 minutes long we would have so had that one in the bag! (or at least a pity point).

It doesn’t work that way, though. Sadly. you know, I could just go on and on about the Caps defense and how they were left in Nashville,scratch that, first round against the Rangers in the Playoffs last year. But I’m not, it was so blatantly obvious the players might have well just not been on the ice.

what I’m going to address is effort and accountability. Those are two things the Caps are severely lacking in, which they really shouldn’t be.

It’s one thing to be playing good, smart,a nd hard hockey and lose. No one’s going to be extremely pleased about it, except the opposing team, but no one’s going to pitch a temper tantrum and throw their shoes at the wall.

It’s a completely different matter if you’re playing like a bunch of girl scouts, standing there looking like an idiot watching a guy go one-on-one with your goalie and score.

I’ll give you one guess to figure out what way the Caps played last night, and if you watched the game, I don’t really think you need to guess. The Caps played pitifully last night, I’m honestly shocked every player on the Jets roster didn’t score a goal! We had absolutely no presence in that game. Effort? unheard of.

If the Caps just played like the team they’re capable of playing like, our losses would be less frequent (I know we’d still lose games) and a little bit more close. Unlike a 4-1 loss that wasn’t even a game after the Jets scored their third goal. It was a game we could have easily won! but maybe that’s the problem, we get cocky with a lead and blow it. But I would think after dancing around this barn, game after game and Playoff crap out after Playoff crap out, they’d figure it out! Clearly not.

That leads to my next point, accountability. No one can make the Caps play, no matter how many times Boudreau goes on a F-bomb laden rant until his face goes blue, no matter how many bag skates he makes them do, and no matter how many wackadoo line combinations he makes.

It’s not going to do a damn thing unless the players themselves commit to playing every game like it’s their last and just playing with heart and grit. Honestly, Ovechkin has never been the kind of player to be a Captain and never will be. He’s a fantastic player, but he isn’t Captain material. I don’t care that he’s the “face of the Caps franchise”. The Caps need a real leader who’s going to actually motivate them, because that’s what’s going to motivate them.

Until we have a real leader who makes his players accountable for their actions and makes them go out and play like a respectable hockey team, they aren’t going to play any harder or any better.

Hey Caps, there’s a game going on…

17 Nov

I am absolutely disgusted by the Caps right now (now being the end of the second where the Jets scored 3 goals). I have never seen such a lack of effort, heart, or play by any team I have ever watched. Much less the so touted “best team in the NHL”. My PE floor hockey team play better than these guys and 3 of the players don’t even play!

How is it that we have some of  the, arguably, best players in the NHL but we fail to win game after game to easy opponent after easy opponent. And for chrissake, our defense isn’t even at the game! Did we lose them at the airport? If our defense is so lacking in depth that one player makes or breaks the team, then we need to reevaluate the players we have.

Last year we had our infamous eight game losing skid; something changed, the Caps finally got the message, playing Ottawa of all teams. This isn’t an eight game losing streak, yet. But with the way the Caps are playing, I wouldn’t be surprised if we finished at the bottom of the league.

Something has got to change. At this point, I don’t care if it’s players, coaches, or whatever. Some thing has got to get across to these 22 players that they have to play hard, every damn minute they are on the ice. I don’t care if we’re winning by 50 goals with 10 seconds left.

Someone has got to get the point across to them, you don’t win by standing around in your zone watching pucks fly into the net. are they going to get that message, for the 50th time? I damn sure hope so.

Incase you weren’t aware…

15 Nov
There are THREE count them THREE periods in a hockey game Caps! AND GUESS WHAT!? If you don’t play all three you get screwed and lose. ANOTHER THING rounding doesn’t work in the NHL, if you play 55 mins. you can still lose 3-1 to the Predators!
Also, just because you get the lead late in the game doesn’t mean you’re just automatically going to win taking the last few minutes off. The defense has to show up, and you know, PLAY! And the offense can’t skate in circles either, you have to be present and playing hard until that final buzzer goes off if you expect to win.
I am utterly disgusted with the Caps effort of late. It’s not Boudreau’s fault either, he tries everything under the gosh darn sun to get these guys to play! They’re the ones on the ice making the plays, not Boudreau. He can yell, gnash teeth, pull hair, and eat Hageen Daaz all he wants; but until the players show up it’s about as useful as doing the hula.
Ovie, Knuble, and the like can talk all they want tonight; calling their team various names. But until the attitude on the ice changes, it doesn’t matter anymore than what I ate for breakfast.
If we keep playing like this, with the amount of talent we have, we aren’t even a prayer to do well in the Playoffs. Hell! even make the Playoffs. Yes, it really does matter now, because this is when we really see what teams are made of. And I can tell you this much; the Caps are about as impressive as the Florida Panthers were last year.
The only redeemable thing tonight? Vokoun standing on his head and Troy Brouwer’s goal, at least two people showed up tonight.
The message is simple; show up to games and play hard for 60 minutes. Are the Caps receiving it?
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