Backstrom after taking an elbow from Rene Bourque. (Photo credit: Clydeorama)

Did you think we were over this? We’re not.

Nick Backstrom has missed 22 games since absorbing Rene Bourque‘s elbow to his head on January 3rd. He has not skated in practice, and there is no timetable for his return. The Capitals have gone 8-11-3 without Nick Backstrom and are no longer among the east’s top 8. We’ve talked about Bourque endlessly and we even made a Punch-out style video about him, but hell no we’re not over this yet.

Neither is the team. Earlier this month, Brooks Laich told the Washington Post, “I don’t think our guys are ever going to forget what happened.”

The Capitals return home on Friday after a floundering road trip. There’s no reason to believe that any recent trends will magically reverse, so we’re encouraging this sideshow. And that’s why we’re debuting our new campaign for Rene Bourque: PUNCH THIS FACE.

Sure, Hendricks gave it a shot on January 18, but we weren’t satisfied. And it’s not like Backstrom sprang back into action as a result. We need to be sure it goes right this time. offers indispensable advice on throwing a punch, including when to shout “yeehaw” or “bam”, how to exclude parents and bosses from your list of potential targets, and to always conclude the punching process by running away. Good tips if not immediately transferable to hockey.

Capitals Red Line contextualized fighting on an icy surface. The lower friction coefficient, we are told, makes even awesome-looking punches a bit less potent. Keep this in mind, whatever pugilistic Caps guy steps up, and keep your blades perpendicular to the punch vector.

The rest falls on us, the fans.

During Friday’s game, all Verizon Center attendees will boo loudly when Bourque touches the puck. He’ll be the dude in the white jersey, sporting number 27. If Bourque gets hit or goes to the box, it is required of you to applaud until you joy-puke.

And finally, Ian and Rachel have created these printable masks and accompanying posters for you.

Download the Mask Download the Poster

Here’s what you do:

  1. Download and print the Bourque face. It’ll fit perfectly on a standard page.
  2. With safety scissors and under the supervision of an adult, cut out the face and eyes.
  3. Using string, yarn, or shoelaces to fasten the mask to your noggin.
  4. Download and print the Poster. It’ll also fit on a standard page.
  5. Go to the game. Hold the sign up and wear the mask. Rock the red. Unleash the fury, but…
  6. Don’t punch other people wearing the mask. They’re not actually Rene Bourque. It’s just a mask!

If you don’t wanna wear the mask, just grab this All-purpose Poster (pictured at bottom).

Feel free to make copies for your friends and neighbors. Pass ’em out in Chinatown.

When our art and your leg work combine, there’s no way the Caps will miss their target. It’s like anti-social Captain Planet.

Crash the net.

  • Ben

    Suggestion: GMGM trades for Bourque. The cell phone locker room video of his beatdown and subsequent release would be fairly pleasing to say the least.  It would even give Joe and Craig something nice to break down during the telecast, since the last week has offered nothing

  • brian!

    Good Lord this is brilliant!

  • D3n1x

    Awesome, I hope they fight him every time he is on the ice. 

  • Traceybee

    I LOVE this!!

  • Mcrere_va

    I think Erskine might have to be in the line up if only to throttle Bourque

  • Allie Castro

    im printing it out and holding it at my house while i watch the game. dont even need to be at the verizon center(:

  • hokaheyhockey

    So this is what our Caps have become, petty, vindictive thugs who can’t be a team?

  • Owen

    Here’s what one of our lines should beDJ King-Hendricks-BrouwerErskine-Rechlicz (not a defenseman I know, but does it really matter)
    Let ’em go to town

  • serpent

    No, just a TEAM of really pissed off players who miss the best center in hockey and our chief playmaker due to the completely brainless, illegal action of one airhead jerk. That was very hard to write without appropriately descriptive explitives.

  • Chris Gardner

    No silly, it’s what we are as fans.

    How many hands has that tall horse of yours?

  • Peter

    fighting doesn’t preclude teamwork

  • Mrhule1

    This just made my day!

  • capcup12

    Just posted to my fb (with all props to the Machine that NEVER breaks…)
    “If we can’t win (or score, or defend, or pass, or discern the difference between a red jersey and a white one), then at the very least we could do this:

    This is the best meme since cats started to eat hamburgers…

  • That Asshole Fan

    im taking this picture to the shooting range today.

  • I’ll be bringing this to the game.  If  Caps Game Entertainment is ok with it, it might show up on the big screen before the game.  If not, well, I still have it.

  • fitlanbox

    I want this team to sell and actually find an identity, so I’m almost hoping for another 2 ugly loses heading into the deadline to finally get GMGM to remove his head from his ass.  Since I’m ok with a loss anyway, might as well go all in and call up King and Rech to send a serious message and prove that the team actually has some salt and vinegar.  If the team wants to prove that they still care, several caps(ie someone other than Hendy) need drop em with Bourque, and they need to be running him every damn time he is on the ice.  I’m not saying they should goon it up out there, but they need to grow a pair and fucking stick up for the teams MVP.  

  • Peter