Tag Archives: ovechkin

Lowered Expectations?

 

While we all wait to see even a twitch out of GMGM (which he’s not indicating anything) and for a jam packed Sunday.. I’m gonna quickly touch on something.

Read this article from our friends over at Capitals News Network.

Now I get it.. everyone wants to be a “true sports fan” and say things like, “I’m in it for the game, win or lose”, and “the players don’t’ owe us anything”.. but that’s horse shit. Individually, no they don’t. But collectively both the organization and to the fans, absolutely. I believe strongly in always being a fan of your team no matter how the season goes, but I’m not gonna cover up my disappointment with acting as if I’m some sort of sports snob and say it doesn’t bother me.

There is a big difference between entitlement and expectations and loyal fans have their expectations and they have their entitlements. I saw a comment that read something like “we as fans aren’t entitled to anything and if you’re not happy and if they aren’t winning, stop going to games”. What the dick is that?? I bet that guy is a Steelers, Yankees, Lakers, Duke fan…. from his couch.  If your fans are consistently selling out games and creating great buzz around the city, then yes, you owe them a cup. If you as an organization and team set the standard as winning no matter what… then YES, you owe your fans a cup. I know that may sound like a dickhead comment, but think about this…. Even though hockey players are known as being the least flashy in the professional world (see, “how many NHL players are on Twitter vs NBA players), they still depend on fans just as much as any other sport. The fans are just as important as the players, coaches and management. What’s the first thing you always hear any one of those in the organization say when they are given some type of award or honor… “This is for the best fans in the world” which is sweet of them right? Now I’m sure that every player in the NHL would still play even if it was for peanuts, but that wouldn’t work would it? Money makes everything function the way it should. When you buy that $200.00 sweater or pound those $10.00 beers, just think of the distant fan in Oregon that is thanking you for keeping the whole system running and keeping his game on Versus or the NHL network.

I’m ranting a tad, but the bottom line is this.. Yes, Caps fans, you are entitled to a Cup. Just as the New Jersey Devils fans, Boston Bruins fans, and even yes, The Shitsburgh Penguins fans are entitled to a cup. The day that you stop believing in winning, is the day you stop caring about the game all together.

Sorry for the jumbled post… Rizzle.

California Snubbed

2/17/2010

Capitals fall to a team that they haven’t been able to show up and beat at their house since 1993. Sigh. Now, this was a good, physical San Jose team that has been having a great February compared to their disaster of a January, but I honestly thought Washington was going to be able to smash through in the 3rd after looking like the better team in the 1st and 2nd.

And thanks to some stellar commentary, I give you this…

1993.. ah yes.

Breakin it down, yo.

Niemi came up big for the Sharks in many situations, including some early big saves on Ovechkin in the first which should have been goals. I’m gonna give him the win for the Sharks.

Ovie looks good in the 1st given the back to back games, and sets a physical tone right off the bat. It catches up with him at the end of the period when a big hit turns into “interference”. Good on the kill and super props to Neuvy for coming up with a monster save with about a second left in the power play.

And then… ANOTHER short handed goal. It’s terrible when I sit and start to dread power plays. It induces stress and rarely produces goals.

…. Until Ovie nets his 23rd of the season through a bit of traffic. I almost forgot what it was like to score on a pp. whoo.

Going confidently into the second. Neuvirth looks solid, the game looks like its ours to win for sure. After a ton of missed opportunities and plenty of good saves for both teams, the 2nd ends without a goal.

Still feeling good going into the third…

The Sharks get a good looking goal when Clowe stands on the crease and bats one in.. now is it me, or was the nearest Caps sweater 10 feet away at the time of the goal? I was too pissed to go back on the dvr so I’m just going to agree with myself.

And here’s where I’ll just sum it up quickly.

-Neuvirth puts a monster save on Couture.

-Erskine’s pentalty was bullshitkaki.

-Sharks get a pp goal to make it 3-1.

-I give up with 3 minutes left, Backs gets a good screen and puts one in with 1:55 putting a tingling back into my pants again… it was a text message from one of the guys over Eutaw Street.

San Jose plays LOCK DOWN defense with a minute left and we can’t even get our goalie off the ice.

Boom Bang Bam… game.

See ya on Sunday.

After the Olympics….

It’s tough to get away from Olympic hockey on a day like today but we’ve decided to take a look at five important topics facing the Caps after the break and into the playoffs.  They are listed in no particular order of importance.

1) The Deadline.

GMGM only has a couple days to make a move if he so pleases before the March 3rd deadline.  Will he make a move or will he stay put? The rumors have been flying about the Caps being involved in what seems like every player available.  Whether it be a veteran goaltender, a 2nd or 3rd line center, or a veteran D-man, we’ve heard it all.  It’s all going to come down to price.  If the team feels like they can make a move at the right cost, they’ll do it.  But GMGM is not one to overpay at the deadline.  It doesn’t appear like there’s an overwhelming amount of talent out there right now.  A center would help with the struggles Flash has had in the faceoff circle. He was even switched back to wing before the break.  Another D-man would help because rolling guys like Erskine and Sloan out there just won’t cut it come playoff time.  As much as I hate him, Andy Sutton from the Islanders seems to really fit the teams needs. A big, mean veteran D-man playing some good hockey right now.  Is the price right?  We’ll see.

2) Ovi’s pursuit of a 3rd straight MVP.

Ovi is arguably having his best season ever this year pacing the league in points with 89, plus/minus at +43, and goals tied with 87 from the Penguins with 42.  What makes this all the more impressive is that he missed eight games due to injury or suspension.  He’s played seven less games than Crosby and Henrik Sedin who currently is 2nd in the points race with 80. He’s also become a more well-rounded player with an increased role in the defensive zone.  He’s on pace to easily pass his career high in assists with 54 set in 05-06 and 08-09.  He currently has 47 with twenty games to play.  Oh yeah, not to mention he’s now the Captain of a team that sits first in the NHL which brings me to my next point….

3) The Caps pursuit of the President’s Trophy

The Caps currently are first in the NHL with 90 points, one ahead of the San Jose Sharks.  Chicago is another team fighting for the honor with 87 points and a game in-hand on both the Caps and Sharks.  The Caps as a franchise have never finished with the most points in the league so it would be quite the honor.  Even more important is what comes with the trophy and that’s home-ice throughout the playoffs.  The Caps are currently 23-3-3 at home good for best in the league.  Now we know home-ice doesn’t mean everything but ask yourself if you’d like to be on the road or at home for a Game 7.  Yeah, that’s what we thought.  And knock on wood, but if the Caps are able to make it to the Stanley Cup Finals, having that home-ice would be extremely important for a still young team.

4) Who’s the goalie for the stretch run and into the playoffs.

Cmon, you knew this one was coming.  We here at The Caps Lock touched on this a bit not too long ago so I’ll make it short.  Varly gave up six goals on only 28 shots against Ottawa in his first start in the NHL since Dec right before the break. That’s not very good.  Lets hope it was just rust.  Theo wasn’t great leading up to the break but his last 33 save effort against the Blues wasn’t anything to scoff at.  Money here is on Bruce letting the boys fight it out.  Not exactly the best feeling.

5) The Caps remaining schedule.

This is important in a variety of ways.  With the Olympic break, how will twenty games in less than a month and a half wear on the boys?  There have been a lot of complaints from players and coaches about the high amount of games in such a small time period.  Some say it’s caused more injuries.  The travel has also been plentiful and guys may be wearing down.  It’s times like these the Caps enjoy having a young team.  The Caps do however have one of the more favorable schedules in the league.  Nine of their final twenty contests are against Southeast division opponents.  Furthermore, twelve of them are at home, including four of the final six.  None of these factors should be overlooked when considering locking up home-ice throughout the playoffs.

It’s certainly going to be a great rest of the season.  Hopefully the boys come up big when it counts.

– Dominic Toretto

Hats off

Most exciting game of the season? Maybe.

I won’t lie… I’m out here on the west coast so I woke up late, which ended up being the best thing I could have done.

First thing I did was grab my phone and found 5 different text messages from 5 different friends.. each one increasingly depressing..
“Sid’s making you guys look like jerks”…. “what the hell man??” all the way to the last one… “F**k this game”.

It took me a minute to even want to turn the TV on… but I did… amidst the second… down 4-1.
The last message I sent out to my pessimistic texters… “never say die”.

My game, went really well from then on…it just got better and better and next thing you know Ovie’s got a hat trick and we’re rolling into OT…. and finally the W turning out to be my favorite game of the season fo sho’.

Why my favorite game?
-Win over the Pens
-Win over the Pens who were prob sure they were going to dominate
-Any come back from 4-1 is tight.
-Ovies hat trick. Esp when Crosby is in town… thinking he’s gonna out preform The Gr8. I hope you remember him telling the officials box last year to make an announcement to stop throwing the hats…. if you haven’t… click here and laugh
-Jeff Schultz got an assist.
-14

Duh.

– I.C.

498, 499, 500 and counting..

Lastnight, against the Rangers, THE GREAT 8 notched the 500th point of his  career. The point was scored on a ridiculous goal that pretty much sums up how disgusting Ovie is.  Ovechkin joins an elite list (Wayne Gretzky, Mario Lemieux, Peter Stastny, Mike Bossy, Dale Hawerchuk, Bryan Trottier, Denis Savard and Jari Kurri) to reach 500 points in their first 5 seasons.  All the above mentioned are Hall of Famers and no doubt Ovechkin will someday join them in the HOF.  I offer my congratulations to Mr. Alexander Ovechkin and look forward to many more years of watching perfection. So everyone pull out a glass, pour an Ovechkin (mixture of Vodka, Bourbon, and Red Bull) and Cheers to THE GREAT 8.

-Smash

Ovgrechkin

Good thing about having friends and family that love hockey as much as I do is that I get sent articles, colums and videos during the day that I would usually miss out on (damn the man with his 9 to 5 corporate slave driving)
Here’s John Buccigross’ response to Ovie’s chances on breaking Gretzky’s carreer goals record. Thanks KJ.

“Let’s give ‘er a go.

Let’s project Alex Ovechkin finishes with 51 goals this season. That would give him 270 career goals at age 24 following this regular season. That means he would need 625 more goals to break Gretzky’s all-time mark of 894.

Because of Ovechkin’s physical style of play, one would think he has a high probability of getting injured at some point. This would mean missed time and the potential of him being less of a player depending on the injury. Ovechkin’s off-the-ice penchant for fast fun could also curtail his production over time.

But let’s hope for the best and assume Ovechkin escapes serious injury during his career and slowly adjusts as he gets older. Players who have booming shots age more slowly in terms of goal totals.

We will attempt to project Ovechkin’s goal total over the next 16 seasons through the age of 40, which was how old Brendan Shanahan (656 career goals) was when he retired. Brett Hull (741 goals) scored his last NHL goal at age 40. Wayne Gretzky scored his last at 38. Phil Esposito (717) was 38. Steve Yzerman (692) was 41. So 40 is a reasonable number.

Some of Ovechkin’s projected years might have unexplained lower goal totals in an attempt to compensate for some lost games like we saw this season, whether it be some kind of injury, slump or illness. Players who play like Ovechkin are not iron men. I will put his age and a projected goal total and see what we end up with. I don’t really have a final total number in my mind. I’m just going to take it one season at a time starting with next season at age 25.

Age — Goal Total
Age 25 — 71 goals (He’s got to have one monster season)
Age 26 — 66
Age 27 — 60
Age 28 — 51
Age 29 — 55
Age 30 — 48 (Gretzky’s last 40-plus goal season was at age 30)
Age 31 — 52
Age 32 — 45
Age 33 — 55
Age 34 — 40 (Yzerman had his last 30-plus-goal season at age 34)
Age 35 — 37
Age 36 — 32 (Esposito had a 40-goal campaign at age 36)
Age 37 — 40 (Shanahan had a 40-goal season at age 37)
Age 38 — 32 (Hull scored 37 goals at age 38)
Age 39 — 28
Age 40 — 27

I swear I didn’t add as I went along. I think these numbers are pretty reasonable, as noted by some of the comparables. I do think Ovechkin will post a 70-goal season and I have it happening next season as all of this young Capitals talent keeps improving. Ovi just needs to keep shooting. OK, I will now add up my Ovechkin projected numbers to see what we have for a goal total over the next 16 seasons.

739 goals.

If you combine those goals with the 270 we project Ovechkin to have after this season, he will easily breaks Gretzky’s mark by 115 goals and would give him 1,009 career goals. This means we could even subtract seven goals from each of these projected seasons above and Ovechkin still has 897 goals at age 40.

If you took off seven goals from each of the seasons above, Ovechkin could end up having no career 70-goal seasons, only one more 60-goal season and no more 50-goal seasons after the age of 27 and still break Gretzky’s all-time mark.

This will take a lot of health, hockey love and luck, but it’s not far-fetched.”