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Photo: Joel Auerbach

The trade deadline got really difficult for some Caps fans on Wednesday when long-time goalie Michal Neuvirth was dealt to the Buffalo Sabres for Jaroslav Halak. It’s understandable if some fans got attached over the years. Neuvirth won Calder Cups in AHL Hershey, honored Olie Kolzig by having an image of him painted on the side of his mask, and forever challenged our assumptions of what a smile is.

But more than that, Neuvy was a homegrown prospect who worked his tush off to make it to the big league team and succeed. Let’s just forget about that one bad interview he did.

On Friday night, Neuvirth took the ice for the first time with the Buffalo Sabres. And it was super weird. Wearing his Capitals-themed mask, Capitals colored pads and gloves, and red, white, and blue stick, Neuvy made 42 saves (one off his career high) in the Sabres 2-0 loss to Roberto Luongo and the Florida Panthers.

Have I mentioned it was weird?

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Photo: Robert Mayer

Thanks to @AdamVingan who inspired me to do this post.

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  • opinions_thoughts

    I really need to stop being so attached to players.

  • radack

    Neuvirth wins Vezina next season. #BookIt

  • Matthew Kory

    That would be awesome.

  • Myan

    Good stop there on Bergenheim!

  • Jayleigh

    Glad to see him do so well! He deserves this opportunity. I watched and cheered him on. :)

  • A_Shoe

    I wish nothing but the best for Neuvy. It looks like he’ll be the Sabres’ starter for the immediate future.

  • Justin

    We could’ve kept both him and Holtby (who are both on favorable contracts) if we had some reliable D playing in front of them. Instead, this is who we’re icing as the 3rd D pairing… NHL 14 doesn’t lie.

  • Alex Hughes

    If he didn’t get sick before that game vs Winnipeg, he probably would have been getting most of the starts and we would still have him and Holtby. Still super weird seeing him in anything other than Caps red, white, and blue and it will take a long time for me to get used to it.

  • Alex Hughes

    He should be used to getting 44 shots in a game playing for the 2013-2014 Caps. He’s just not used to all these shots not from the outside.

  • Chris Cerullo

    This one was especially hard for me for some reason. He’s in a better place career wise now though.

  • http://www.russianmachineneverbreaks.com Ian Oland

    Keep in mind, you have to start somewhere. He won’t be a 68 forever.

  • http://www.twitch.tv/barrowsboy Andrew

    I hate that his team is so shitty. He deserves so much better. Best of luck Neuvy.

  • Owen Johnson

    NHL 14 DOES lie. Erskine is a 77. I believe Schmidtty is only a 70.

  • Owen Johnson

    Wish the guy all the best. He worked his butt off here. Always thought he was a good ‘tender, just had some rough luck (he seemed to get hurt whenever he had a chance to grab the #1 spot).

    :-^ Neuvy “smile”

  • Just_sayin3

    It’s hard to let go of some of these guys who leave the Caps…Neuvy was one of them…Wishing him the best in Buffalo!

  • Just_sayin3

    I agree with you! Hendricks was a really recent tough one for me. I still haven’t gotten over Bondra. :-(

  • scrubversive

    I had NHL ’99 for my N64. Both of the Sedins were high 50’s/low 60’s. I thought they were just really bad players who were somehow on the same team at the time. Took a few years for me to realize that wasn’t the case.

    Not comparing Carrick to a Sedin. Just emphasizing NHL games are liar liar pants on fire.

  • Jeff Colyer

    I got to watch Neuvy when he was winning Calder Cups in Hershey. I was happy for him when he got the call up to Washington. Now I wish the best for him and, even though I am a Caps fan, I hope when he faces the Caps he sends them home with a shutout!!

  • VeggieTart

    It seemed that every time he was slated to play, he got sick or hurt, and Holtby had to take over. He wasn’t happy here for a long time. I hope he is happy in Buffalo and does well–except when the Caps play Buffalo.

  • bskillet

    Michal is a good goalie, hoping he gets the #1 position in Buffalo.

  • http://www.russianmachineneverbreaks.com/ Peter Hassett

    Neuvy is a below-average .911 goalie on a team that allows 33+ shots a game and can’t score. He’s gonna get destroyed.

  • MuzzMuzzington

    Not sure if talking about Caps or Sabres…

  • Justin

    Yes, I understand that video game ratings are arbitrary and aren’t true indicators of skill or promise. I was merely comparing defensive pairings with a friend (who is a Blues fan) and was startled to see the stark contrast between what both teams are putting out on the ice each night. Trust me, I believe in what Carrick can offer to the franchise in the future, but if we believe that we can go toe-to-toe with the rosters of St. Louis / Chicago / Anaheim / Boston this season, we might be as deluded as GMGM. I understand that moving Neuvy was necessary as he was unhappy here, but we failed to address our true weakness. It doesn’t matter who we have in net, without a reliable blue line, every game is going to be an uphill battle.

  • Jonah

    i never really liked nervy much, he was injury prone and i didn’t think he had the ability of holtby. forgetting that, it was heartbreaking to see him sent to buffalo, he’s too good to be playing in that shithole.

  • Myan

    Oh come on guys, he is clearly speaking in hyperbole. This isn’t meant to be a strict condemnation of Carrick’s hockeying ability, just an amusing observation. Our bottom 2 D is a 68 and a 77. St. Louis bottom 2 are both in the 80s. NHL14 ratings aren’t accurate indicators of skill nor ability (especially with lesser-known players) but they are ball park estimates. We’re kidding ourselves if we think that we can genuinely compete when we are fielding a product that is this inferior.