First up, the Charleston Post and Courier has a lengthy feature on big blueliner Sasha Pokulok (the player the Caps took with their first round pick in the Great Screw Job of 2005, err, the 2005 Entry Draft). If you don't feel like reading the whole article, here's the bottom line in a neat, two paragraph nutshell:
It is Pokulok's offensive skill, his skating ability, and his 6-5, 230-pound frame that made the former Cornell star a first-round pick in the 2005 NHL draft by the Washington Capitals.Take your time, Sasha - we'll wait... if you're worth waiting for.
But while his skills are indisputable, the expectations that come with being a first-round draft pick have carried a heavy burden for the soft-spoken Pokulok. Labeled a bust by some hockey experts just two years into his professional career, Pokulok's development has been too slow for some Capitals fans.
The second nugget du jour comes via the Alexander Ovetjkin blog, and it's the translation of a brief SovSport interview with goaltender Simeon Varlamov, who will join the franchise's better-known Russians at the World Championships. Money quote:
I know that the Washington Capitals are waiting for me, they talk a lot with my agent. I'm planning to leave for North America. I know it will be hard to break into the Capitals roster. But I will try. I am even prepared to spend a year or two in the AHL.... I know how much they pay in the AHL. But at this stage I'm not interested in money.I'll set the over/under on his NHL arrival at December, 2009. Place your bets.