Monday, October 06, 2008

Snip Snip: Alzner, Bourque, Laing Edition

Final cuts have been made and Karl Alzner, Chris Bourque and Quintin Laing have been sent to Hershey (which, for Laing, means having to go through waivers), leaving a 22-man roster in D.C. (for more on the cuts, check out John Walton Hockey and Dump and Chase).

The above moves make the following (which I was about to post) somewhat irrelevant:
As rosters move closer to being finalized at all levels of puck, the Hershey Bears have sent defensemen Viktor Dovgan and Sasha Pokulok (along with forwards Travis Morin and Tommy Maxwell) down to South Carolina of the ECHL.

While the Dovgan move is mildly surprising (especially given that some thought he would be joined at the hip with Simeon Varlamov this season so as to provide the bluechip goalie with at least one teammate on and off the ice who speaks his language), one wonders if the move is meant to free up a spot or two on the Bears blueline before the the season starts in anticipation of the arrival of a certain rearguard from Washington.

10 comments:

Brian said...

Is this the end of the Sasha Pokulok Experience? I would say this puts him on page 2 of the depth chart.

wittcap79 said...

While it's a bit sad to see Karl go...I'm sure the salary cap has alot to do with this move. I'm sure CB is on the short short list for injury call-ups too.

ajd said...

Bourque will get his shot at a big league job eventually. The fact of the matter is that he's almost certainly not as good as the guys with the team at his position. At least now.

Alzner...that's another story, I suspect. He's probably a bit better than Erskine, at least until he hits the rookie wall. But with the salary cap, I think he was doomed from the start.

I am not pleased at the prospect of seeing significant minutes for Erskine, but hopefully they'll get the cap straightened out or (dare we hope) get rid of it entirely.

exwhaler said...

Pokulok seems like he's pushed out, but I'm not sure what the Capitals organization still thinks of him. After his two concussions in one season, he was always going to be a longer-term prospect, no matter where he was drafted. With the depth of prospects (especially with the arrival of Alzner and the drafting of Carlson), I'm not sure how much longer he's going to stick around.

Dovgan and Morin going down *is* surprising, however. Morin's got nothing left to prove in the ECHL, while Dovgan apparently has had a great camp with both the Caps and Bears. Maybe when the goalie situation is sorted out, one of them will be back....

Chris said...

I commented on another post a few days ago that I would rather have Bourque on the team than Semin or Fleiscmann. The Bruins game only further convinced me that I was right. Semin is the kind of player whose giveaways cost teams games. I feel much better with Bourque on the ice than those two.

I am also completely heartbroken for Laing. I really like his game.

b.orr4 said...

@Chris-you'd rather have Bourque than Semin? What's next, you'd rather have a Hyundai than a BMW? Seriously, the Semin hate around these parts is bewildering. Here's a bet, put Semin and Bourque on waivers and see which one gets gobbled up in 3 seconds. Hint: his initials won't be AS.

b.orr4 said...

And I meant his initials won't be CB.

JP said...

Look, Chris Bourque is a nice little player, and a reasonable argument might be made that he earned a spot on this team in the preseason or perhaps even that he would be a better fit right now than Tomas Fleischmann.

But let's not get carried away.

Chris said...

I know my opinion is not popular, and an argument that I am overstating my case certainly can be supported (I am not in the best of moods at the moment and might, therefore, be exagerating a bit). That said, Semin was a -18 last year (only M.N. was worse), and, while it is only preseason, he has continued his pattern of over stick-handling rather than making the pass or taking the shot. This leads to multiple turnovers per game. He makes a good number of these turnovers within 6 feet of the blue lines, leading to odd-man rushes and opposing scoring opportunities.

Oh, yeah, and he is lazy. If you want to call me a Semin hater, I have no problem with that label given what I see in his game at this point. He certainly has the tools and skills, but I have yet to see improvement on the pace I would have expected. Given the discussions I have had in the stands, I am not the only one. I hope Federov is a good influence on him and can teach him a few things.

Am I using a bit of hyperbole when I say I would rather have Bourque than Semin? Possibly, but it is not as far fetched a notion as the last couple of posts indicate. There are times I feel a lot better with Bourque out there than Semin, and I would definitely be willing to argue him vs. Fleischmann.

Lisa said...

I occasionally complain about Semin, especially with respect to the hooking penalties (case in point, yesterday) but there's no venom in that, only exasperation. He's crazy talented and the team is better with him on it. Not sure why I feel the need to explain myself...

Although it was semi-inevitable, I do cringe at a roster spot for Erskine though. He's like McDonald's, crappy but cheap.