Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Tuesday Night Open Thread

While you were busy hitting your browser's "refresh" button every three seconds since this morning and "working," you might have forgotten that the Caps have a game tonight.

And while none of the new guys will be in the lineup, neither will Viktor Kozlov (flu). Chris Bourque has been called up from Hershey, but with just 19 games remaining on the schedule and every single point absolutely critical, tonight's game will be a challenge for the Caps who will be without now three top-six forwards (Kozlov, Nylander and Fedorov), a pair of top checkers (Clark and Cooke) and their number one goalie (Huet). On the plus side, only the loss of Kozlov is a change from Sunday. On the minus side, the Caps lost Sunday. And Saturday. And last Wednesday.

Help is on the way... hopefully it's not too little, too late.

29 comments:

Scott said...

Nice picture...I can get used to that

Ryan said...

I remember when the Caps picked up Oates/Tocchet/Ranford in '97, they missed the first game after the trade, which the Caps lost and those two points would have put them in the playoffs. Let's hope the same thing doesn't happen with Huet/Fedorov/Cooke in '08.

Ryan said...

...or Fedorov/Cooke/Huet if you're into parallel structure.

CD said...

JP, what the hell, no breaking news on Motzko to ATL for Giroux?

Slacker.

Eli said...

I can't believe they didn't find a way to offload Eminger. Surely there's a team out there that won't treat him like he schtupped the coach's daughter and healthy-scratch him 9 out of 10 nights!

Anonymous said...

i dont like seeing huet in 39, thats steckels number, cristobals going to have to find something else, maybe 29

Ogre said...

Steckel seems like the kinda guy who could change numbers for this. But, ugh, didn't even think about that.

JP said...

I was just going with the number on the team's site - but it's obviously not updated (someone's gotta give up the number).

JmF said...

Although I'm not arguing - you're going with Huet as the number 1 guy? That easily?

JP said...

I don't think they traded for a UFA-to-be backup. My feeling is that Huet will be given every chance to be the #1 guy and potentially the "bridge" between Olie and Varlamov or Neuvirth.

JP said...

And Holy Brooks Fucking Laich.

Rage said...

Way to go Brooskie!

Rage said...

That message was way too nice. Bad on Rage.

Anonymous said...

What is everyone's thoughts on GM's interview on Vs about not shopping for a goalie? I can comprehend how 'these things kind of just happen' - but what BS - no way MTL approached WAS about their '09 2nd round pick.....

Pettie, although obviously not having a great offensive year, will be missed probably more than we might admit - I don't know much about Cooke - we shall see....all in all good day for us - hopefully Huet can become a Cap for longer than 19 days....

dmg said...

Huet is, without a doubt, the #1 guy. Over the last three years his save % have been .929, .916 and .916. The last time Olie had a save percentage that high was 2002-03 and he's last in the NHL in save % this season.

I also think part of the reason the Caps dealt for Huet was to get a start on negotiations with him

grapejoos said...

I heard on TSN that Huet is #5 among all goalies in save percentage since the lockout. That is a pretty great return on Sutherby. I love these trades for us, though it does bring us closer to the breakup with Olie, which is a sad thought.

Anonymous said...

Can't think of a more overt "we're going for the playoffs" move this season. Love the Huet move, and agree with Japes that it's a strong possibility that the Caps are already talking extension with Huet.

Cooke for Pettinger is a wash, but the Caps aren't on the hook for salary afterwards. Will having Brashear and Erskine behind Cooke make him even more of a **** to play against? More importantly, will being traded 'unleash the fury' like it did for Witt once he got to Nashville? Hope so. Crazy is good when you are fighting for a spot in the post-season.

Last but not least, I like the Fedorov move mostly for what it may do for Semin - make him play some damned defense and commit to a power-play philosophy vice treating it like a giggle-fest. Clearly his best days are behind him, but Fedorov's experience in all situations is a plus.

Sounds like the defense market was too high-priced (which may be why the Caps have 3 goalies on the roster right now), but overall, bang-up job by Darth Makfi.

- Empty

JP said...

Sounds like the defense market was too high-priced

The one thing I'd say to that is that Jersey got Salvador for nothing, and he'd have been an upgrade here. But that's my only quibble on the day, and it isn't big.

Grégoire said...

As a habs fan, I'm quite sad to see Huet leaving Montreal...
This is a great trade for Washington. Huet is not only a good goalie, he is a great guy. He always give credits for the wins to his teammates, and accepts the blame for the losses. Truly a very classy guy. He was a fan favorite in Montreal, and I bet he'll be one too in Washington.

Jan said...

JP, you are such a scamp! --> "...a challenge for the Caps who will be without now three top-six forwards (Kozlov, Nylander and Fedorov), a pair of top checkers (Clark and Cooke) and their number one goalie (Huet)."

This gave me a chuckle. Thanks! The one thing I am wondering about and am too lazy to troll for hours in the Habs' fan blogs to find out about, is why they traded him. If he's such a highly-rated goalie, why didn't they lock him in? Is Carey Price the second coming of Jacques Plante, or what? Or was Huet's pending free-agency the impetus? What conclusions can you draw from the info out there?

eric said...

Okay, yeah, Huet has lost the last six or seven of his last starts, but is that a reason to bounce him out of the Organ-I-zation? Is there another story here? I wonder.

mike said...

Is Huet good enough to take us to a Cup? Is he a keeper for the next 5 years?

grapejoos said...

Jan,
From what I can tell, it was a combination of his impending free agency (MTL can't afford to re-sign him and he's not the goalie of the future) and having some bad outings over the past month. He gave up 4 goals on 5 shots to Ottawa recently (I think). However, you would think having a veteran backup during the playoffs would have been worth letting him walk. Either Gainey disagreed, or he thought he was getting Hedberg and Hossa from Atlanta.

Jan said...

"...he's not the goalie of the future" If he wasn't their goalie of the future, how can he be ours? I think Mike's question is a good one. Is he good enough to take us to a Cup?

Or do we have to just wait to see?

Jan said...

I'm sorry -- Carey Price isn't the second coming of Jacques Plante. No, he's the second coming of Ken Dryden and Partick Roy.

grapejoos said...

Evidently Gainey believed that his two youngsters were as good or better than Huet. Huet's recent poor performances seem to support that theory. The Habs are up against the cap, they have a history of going with young goalies, and they also have a history of dealing impending free agents rather than let them leave for nothing, or at least that's what the guys on TSN were saying yesterday. That's the rationale on their end, but clearly they didn't think he'd take them to a cup this year.

I think Huet, when he is on his game, is good enough to lead a team to the cup. The question will be whether he can get back on his game, because he's struggled lately. However, I think he is a clear upgrade over our current netminders, and as such was worth the 2nd round gamble. This way the Caps can give him an audition and get a jump on re-signing him if he plays well.

Last night showed another possible benefit of bringing in Huet: the boost that the competition for starts may give to Olie and/or BJ.

Ogre said...

Dunno if you wanna edit it, but it's been said Huet's gonna wear 33.

JP said...

Yup. Was planning to when I got home from work. Thx.

Ogre said...

38 now? Wtc, Cristobal, make up your mind.