Monday, November 10, 2008

Monday Roundup/Gamenight: Bolts @ Caps

[AP Preview - Preview]

It's hard to recall a game in which the starting netminder match-up was of as much interest to Caps fans as tonight's tilt between the Bolts and the host Capitals.

For the locals, the question of who the number one goalie is hasn't been as unclear as it is currently since, well, the guy who will likely be between the pipes at the other end of the ice tonight lost his last job, and it makes for a somewhat difficult decision for head coach Bruce Boudreau - if he starts Brent Johnson, it will be four straight starts for B.J. with a likely tougher opponent (Carolina on the road) looming on Wednesday night before a weekend home-and-home with the Devils; if he starts Jose Theodore and JT60 lays another egg, Gabby's an idiot for not playing the guy who was 2-0-1/1.63/.953 last week (on the other hand, a strong start by Jose and you've got a team with a ton of confidence and two goalies playing well heading into an intra-division roadie).

As for that guy at the other end of the ice, it will be Olie Kolzig, who is 1-1-1/2.67/.925 for a Tampa team that is at the bottom of the League in goals scored (but has been strong five-on-five) and is in the bottom third in power play and penalty killing efficiencies.

So this Monday night in November brings us our first chance to see (with a ticket or Versus, that is) the first overall pick from this past summer's Entry Draft, Steven Stamkos, former Caps Matt Pettinger and Steve Eminger, and long-time nemeses Vinny Lecavalier and Martin St. Louis. But most importantly to nearly all Caps fans, it's a chance to see an old friend:

Elsewhere 'Round the Rinks:

Is there some more bulletin board material emanating from the Caps' locker room? Check out Alex Ovechkin's thoughts on Paul Mara.... Via Life in Hockeywood (via Puck Daddy), TFP's 2009 Ice Girls Calendar is now available. "Miss Washington" notwithstanding, it's the perfect gift for the hockey fan who likes really flat-chested women.


HotDog88GT said...

The Bolts will be playing their asses off for Olie tonight. I hope they send TB home licking their wounds.

AO finally explodes tonight, and Erskine gets 2 points.

Tyler said...

I hope that Caps fans give Steve Eminger a warm 'welcome back' too. The way the Caps treated Eminger remains a mystery, a mystery that became all the more puzzling after his play late last year.

JP said...

@ Tyler: Combining your comments here and on the Wise article, if there's one ex-Cap who will be on the ice tonight who "deserved better" than the ending he got, it's Eminger.

Tyler said...

No question.

b.orr4 said...

Christ, why don't we just bring rose petals and throw them in front of all the ex-Caps as they take the ice? All this touchy-feely crap is making me a little queasy. This is a hockey game, not a taping of Oprah. And as an aside on Eminger, if the Caps were so wrong to sit him, why did the Flyers dump him after a dozen games for guy who couldn't play for Tampa?

JP said...

Easy, Trigger - the point about Eminger was really more a point about Kolzig.

And given the way Eminger played in the playoffs, I don't think you can fault anyone for wondering whether or not he got a real fair chance here. That said, the Caps were lucky to get what they got for him, and would take that deal 100 times out of 100.

Sombrero Guy said...

Eminger played well in the playoffs and had me wondering "what if" during the summer, but he has stunk it up so far this season. Getting Carlson out of that deal will hopefully look like a steal in years to come.

I plan to take part in a pre game "o-lie!" chant but after that its game on. I hope Olie plays well but I hope we win 3-0.

DMG said...

And as an aside on Eminger, if the Caps were so wrong to sit him, why did the Flyers dump him after a dozen games for guy who couldn't play for Tampa?

Supposedly the trade was in part motivated by the desire to free up cap space so the Flyers can make a run at Brendan Shanahan.

You can put me in the "Eminger deserved better" camp (especially if Erskine's getting 1.25 million a year...) but I'd take Matt Carle over him any day.

b.orr4 said...

@jp: I should have put the little sarcasm sign after my comments since most of that was tongue in cheek. But this urban legend that
Steve Eminger didn't get a fair shake here in DC does drive me a little crazy. Eminger played 212 games for the Caps. During that time, he managed just 43 points and was a -43. And this from a guy who was heralded as an offensive defenseman. By comparison, Keith Ballard, who was drafted one spot ahead of him, has played in 247 games and has 97 points (and is a -16). And he played most of those games for Phoenix, an equally bad team. The bottom line is that Eminger had plenty of opportunity with the Caps, he just never delivered.

this space for rent said...

Like I've said elsewhere. The tribute is fine and appropriate - and it's appropriate that it be kept short. Time enough for a fuller tribute when we're not playing hockey.

When that puck drops, it's game on. I'll cheer long and loud every time we light him up, and if we send Tampa Bay packing with their tails between their legs, I'll leave with a smile on my face.

Shaggy said...

Tribute THIS, Olie.

I hope Ovie gets him in the mask and knocks him down in the crease while Backis chips one in.

I hope Ovie is salivating a little at his prospects tonight. Let's face it: the shooter has the advantage over the netminder. No better night I can think of for Ovie busting loose on Olie.

Girard said...

Actually the goalie has the advantage over the shooter. He has to not let a puck in. The shooter has to get the puck, get a shot, and then make it a sog.

Look at SV% of the top 20 goalies vs. shooting % of the top 20 players.

dcrock said...

Mik UnWise article in the trash: check

Olie jersey in the car: check

Game On.

Ogre said...

I don't think anyone deserves a "standing ovation."

Olie's the goaltender of a rival team. I don't want him to feel good when he comes here. I want him to feel like he should have retired. Because he SHOULD have.

As far as Eminger is concerned, Erskine is a better defenseman than him. On offense and defense. Eminger is trash. I'd almost say Jurcina is better. So, I don't care. Pettinger, if anyone, deserves the biggest boos, because his ass had every chance, and he blew it all. Olie just wanted to play again.

I have no sympathy for rivals.

bigonetimer said...

at least 2 goals allowed high on the glove side tonight from ol' Olie. Book it.

sniff "...memories...only golden memories...of the way we were...." sniff. Maybe it's callous, but I sure hope we spank that ass tonight

Debcapsfan said...

I think it's very appropriate the Pittsburgh girl is the ugliest one.

And Go Caps!

Hazardous said...

I happen to be a fan of smaller breasts/flat chested women, JP, and quite honestly, I was sorely disappointed.