Saturday, February 09, 2008

Saturday Roundup/'Canes 2, Caps 1

[AP Recap - Game Summary - Super Stats - WashingtonCaps.com Postgame]

Before an announced crowd of 18,204 on Friday night, the Caps went 0-for-7 on the power play against the worst penalty kill in the League and are now 0-for-18 with no power play goals in the last six games and 1-for-24 in the last eight. There's not much more to say than that (though feel free to comment on the line juggling, a couple of selfish/bad penalties and yet another slow start), so I won't dwell.

Disappointing to be sure, but it was one game (and, notably, the third in four nights).

Rags tomorrow. Hopefully the power play shows up.

Elsewhere 'Round the Rinks:

Today is Hockey Day in Canada on CBC, and Eric Fehr's hometown of Winkler, Manitoba is featured prominently in the festivities.... Some encouraging stats from Hershey: netminder Daren Machesney is leading the AHL in GAA and is fourth in save percentage (could he be "the bridge" or more?), Josef Boumedienne has points in eight straight, rookie Sami Lepisto is second in the AHL with a plus-23 rating, and Andrew Gordon is third in points per game among rookies and has a plus-17 rating.... H/t to Tyler on the link to Don Cherry's Top 10 Suits.... The South Bend Tribune has a great read on Teddy Ruth's partner on the Fighting Irish blueline... A year ago today I professed my love for Boyd Gordon and recapped a thrilling OT win, and two years ago today we mentioned Lindsay Czarniak, welcomed a new blogger to the blogosphere and dug up stories on gambling and steroids. Good times.

Daily Awards
  • Hart: Ryan Carter (2G, including the game-winner, +2, 5 SOG)
  • Ross: Ryan Carter (2 points)
  • Norris: Scott Niedermayer (A, +2, 4 BkS)
  • Vezina: Jonas Hiller (W, 36 saves on 37 shots against)
  • Richard: Ryan Carter (2G)
  • Calder: Ryan Carter (2G, including the game-winner, +2, 5 SOG)
  • Aiken: Milan Jurcina (for his play on that Erik Cole goal... yikes)

15 comments:

Tyler said...

Lost in two horrid defensive breakdowns (I'm looking at you Milan J. and David S.) is that for the third or so game in a row the Caps really pushed all of an opponents shots to the perimeter and kept the shot-count low. That's tres encouraging.

Everything else sucked, especially the anemic PP.

Tyler said...

And apparently now we know what the non-Steve Jobs Apple founder is doing: He's writing about ND hockey.

Jan said...

Too fancy by half. BY HALF!! I suspect they are beginning to think they are the gol darn Detroit Red Wings. Big Boo's job right now is to drill a little humility and hard work back into their pea brains. His calling out of Freckles, as impatient and selfish, in the Post article is spot on. Keep it up Boo! Hang in there. Right here is where his mettle as a coach and psychoanalyst is going to be big-time tested.

NS said...

PP was putrid. Reminded me of the Hanlon PP...couldnt get setup, useless slow passing, very low shot counts.

Oddly enough, I think Kozlov was the best player on the ice.

Give credit to Carolina though, they shut down Ovie completely. They either play him well or kept the puck in the Caps zone when he was on the ice.

For those who shut their eyes anytime Fleischman gets the puck in the offensive zone, i think you have it wrong. he has gotten alot more responsible on both ends of the ice. what is frightening is when Semin cradles the puck in the defensive zone. turnovers galore.

Carolina out-skated us. Their speed trumps our average D corps. And they were more effective hitters. bleh

anyone see BB's expression leaving the game? soooo dissapointed. i hope he reamed his team. a very important game lost.

maybe this is good? maybe the Caps need to really understand that being in first might be harder than climbing to the top.

b.orr4 said...

This was their first test of playoff hockey and they flunked. But, really, given the youth on this team and the veterans on Carolina is it that surprising? Bruce will use this to his advantage and I think the next time these two teams meet, the results will be different. It's just disappointing that in front of huge crowd they laid such an egg.

FAUX RUMORS said...

1) As much credit BB gets(and deserves) for turning the team around, he deserves some blame for the current state of their special teams
2) As someone rightly pointed out, the PP looks eerily like the Hanlon PP. You'd think a former offensive player like BB would have a better clue on how to run a PP unit than a former back up goalie?
3) Semin displayed last night why he is such an enigma. Was invisible offensively for almost 50 minutes then comes to life with a very nice hard working goal. Followed by an amazingly selfish penalty to end all possible hopes.
4) If we were GM, we'd listen for offers for him. Not sure what kind of a return you'd get, but not sure he's the kind of player you build with. His worth after last year's break out season may still be high?
5) Sure its not easy to find guys who have his offensive talent, but are his negatives worth it?

hotdog88gt said...

Thank you, Faux Rumors! A trade to a team out West would be nice. Get a pick or two for him.

Thought AO looked ill tonight when sitting on the bench.

DMG said...

Although the powerplay isn't looking very good recently, it's still better than league average if you were to extrapolate its success rate under Boudreau to the whole season. It's been in a rut lately, but I'll wait a little longer before I assume it's an inherent problem with Boudreau's scheme.

As for Semin, I doubt he will be traded in 2008 (calender year), because he has signed as extension that hasn't gone into effect yet which creates problem because (1) that 9.2 million over the next two year is likely to be too much for other teams to want to pick up and (2) it's going to hurt players long-term potential to sign with the Capitals as they might think 'well, why should I should an extension to stay here, they might trade me before it even kicks in like they did Semin'

JP said...

Although the powerplay isn't looking very good recently, it's still better than league average if you were to extrapolate its success rate under Boudreau to the whole season. It's been in a rut lately, but I'll wait a little longer before I assume it's an inherent problem with Boudreau's scheme.

While I agree, I think we should have a little more cause for concern based on the fact that much of the success of the Boudreau power play came with Michael Nylander in the lineup. Without Nyls, the Boudreau PP is now 16.4% - still better than the Hanlon extra man, but now in the bottom third of the League if you extrapolate it for the whole season (which seems appropriate to do, given that Nyls ain't comin' back).

And obviously eight games with one PPG should always be cause for some concern.

Anonymous said...

*slowly shakes head* Sasha, Sasha, Sasha....
What to do? What to do?

I'm sorry, I know he had that one single bang-up game in Columbus but I'm still not sold on Poti.

DMG said...

JP,

that's a very good point, that the Caps PP problems started with Nylander's injury, not just at some other seemingly random point. That does indeed make me concerned that the problem is with the system and not that the team is just in a rut.

I think BB was right that the system needs that second left-handed player down low, but I don't think Flash is a good enough playmaker to help to powerplay click at anything close to where it needs to. In my opinion if the Capitals are looking to add someone at the deadline it should be a top six forward with decent offensive upside, some grit, and a left handed shot.

JP said...

Interestingly, the team was 8-for-22 (36.3%) in the first four games after Nyls went on the IR, a stretch that immediately preceded the current 1-for-24.

I'm not sure what the answer is, but I'm pretty certain it involves shooting more and be willing to get dirty in front of the net.

Hazardous said...

I went to the game and 2 out of 3 periods, we outplayed that team. It's disappointing, to say the least.

What I'm curious about was why the hell the lines were juggled around. Our last 2 outtings: wins. Why change a damn thing? Hanlon had a hard-on for shifting lines around every few games, and look how far that got everyone involved. Cut that shit out.

Yet again our PP was absolutely terrible. Nothing else to really say on that.

And what's up with the always getting a penalty in the last 2 minutes? Does anyone else notice this disturbing trend?

Kozlov played a great game and Semin played with more determination than anyone, and rightfully got a goal for it. Why everyone's hating on him is beyond me, that penalty was bogus. (surprise) Tons of miscalls, noncalls, and general BS abound.

Jasper said...

"I'm not sure what the answer is, but I'm pretty certain it involves shooting more and be willing to get dirty in front of the net."

Is this a niche that Fehr can fill? I was watching him and he rarely went to position in front full strength. He was busy supporting the cycle. I don't think they used him on the PP. Is he a lefty?

NS said...

Haz - the penalty on Semin was without a doubt the right call. he played a few great shifts, but was a ghost a lot of the time. he doesnt seem to gel well with linemates either. Kozlov has been the best fit so far. i'm not buying BB's excuse that Semin is just so talented and has such great vision that he needs high skilled players on his line.

and to be clear, i fucking love watching Semin when his game is on. He is a slick puck handler and has a wicked shot.

argh.