One Down, Three to Go: Caps beat Ducks 3-2!

Debora Robinson

Photo: Debora Robinson

Alright, here we go.

The Caps’ Californian vacation is a crucible that will decide exactly of what this team is made. If the Caps can do the impossible and sweep these four games (the fourth at home against the Kings), they could once again make a late-season push for the postseason. With Tuesday’s narrow win over Bruce Boudreau and his Anaheim Ducks, those hopes are still alive.

Here’s how it all went down.

Joel Ward and the terrific third line did their thing again, crashing the net for the game’s first goal. The Ducks struck back as any Caps opponent would do: within the next minute. Before the first period was up, Troy Brouwer converted on the power play to give the Caps a one-goal lead.

The Caps survived a scoreless second period, but Mathieu Perreault found space and a screen to tie the game early in the third. That simply set the stage for Alex Ovechkin, who scored one of his cleanest Ovi shots from the Ovi spot. Halak fought off a late scramble by the Ducks.

Caps beat Ducks 3-2!

  • Mathieu Perreault should never have been traded. He’s a good depth player on a great contract, and he’s adorable like a woodland creature. Looking at the Caps lineup on Tuesday, there’s a woodland creature-shaped hole in the middle of the roster. Sarcastically/naturally, Perreault struck in the third period– thanks to a casual vacancy in his slot and no Caps D particularly interested in shoving Ducks out of the crease. One of Anaheim’s best players all night.
  • The Caps were forced (by themselves, so not actually forced at all) to kill a lengthy five-on-three early in the second period. Within a span of ten seconds, the Caps got busted on a sloppy change (too much dudes) and chucking the puck (delay of game). The PK unit got a bit of luck and some good coverage by Jaroslav Halak to kill it off. Those aren’t encouraging penalties for a team mounting a standings rally, but at least it didn’t burn ‘em this time.
  • Speaking of Halak, here’s another consecutive start for the undisputed number-one goalie in Washington. He was excellent, and there’s something perversely fun about watching robbing a team coached by Bruce Boudreau.
  • The Capitals got thrashed in puck possession during even strength– which was definitely a factor in committing all those penalties– but they made up for it with deadly efficiency on the power play. The Caps PP is still the best part of this team’s game, and they’re still pretty good at drawing penalties in the first place. They’d be even better if they were stronger at evens.
  • Brandon Wheat Kings reference on the broadcast? Chris Gordon doing the sup nod on the broadcast? Good broadcast.
  • Eric Fehr caught a scary puck up high, but did not leave the play. Visors, y’all. Check ‘em out.
  • Jonas Hiller was fantastic in the second period, stopping a whole bunch of strong Caps chances– including an amazing one by Jason Chimera in the final minutes of that frame.
  • Alex Ovechkin scored his 46th with the game-winner, a quintessential Ovi shot from the Ovi spot. That wasn’t enough for him– he peppered Hiller with shots during a late-game powerplay, hungry for moar. Looks like his little lull in shots last week is over, which is very good news. You wanna hear Walton call Ovi’s goal? Me too.

 

Joe B suit of the early morning, eastern time

Joe B suit of the early morning, eastern time

Adam Oates really stuck to his lines. Ovechkin played every second of his 5v5 time with Jay Bodenheimer Beagle (4 PIMs) through late in the game. The Mojo-Beagle-Ovi line wasn’t really bad at all, keeping possession about even despite the Ducks playing from behind all night.

What didn’t work: the Penner-Wellman-Wilson line. There’s no there there. I’ve got no clue what Penner’s role is supposed to be on this team. Well, I know what George McPhee wants his role to be. I just don’t know what Oates is intending with him — or that fourth line in general.

I do know this: if Oates puts Penner-Wellman-Wilson up against the Los Angeles Kings, they’ll get shredded. Take it the the bank. The blood bank, Senator Trent.

But I’m gonna default to playoff mode. I don’t care how they win. I merely care that they’ve won.

The Caps now leave Vanaheim and climb Yggdrasil to the realm of Angels.

One down. On to the next one. Crash the net.

  • Chris Cerullo

    Well that surprised me

  • Freedoooom

    HOW CAN YOU HALAK? -Boudreau

  • Jack Conness

    Don’t get me wrong, GREAT WIN. But wow, Adam Oates is a moron and this team is deeply flawed.

    To begin with Oates, why the hell is Ovi and MoJo out there on the 6-on-5 to end the game? He always seems to have Ovi out there for those situations. WHY? It makes no sense. I have no idea what he is thinking most of the time. These lines tonight were absolutely dreadful too. ZERO production from lines 1, 2, and 4. When Kuzya and Wilson build chemistry, he tears it apart. He is making Dustin Penner Marty Erat 2.0. We give up way too many shots once again and the only reason why we won this game was because of our PP and incredible goaltending. I don’t get what he (Oates) is doing. He is ruining Washington’s chances. A ton of boneheaded decisions.

    Hats off to Halak. He is the reason why we won this game. Save after save. Beautiful. Thank you Jaroslov. We owe you one.

  • Rob W.

    1 down 2 to go, cant find anything to complain about other then Matty P hitting me right in the feels. This team is getting some confidence

  • Lawrence

    Loved this game from the caps. Willy laying the body. Ovechkin. Ward and Chim owning evens. PP looked deadly as always. Halak was amazing (hate to say it, but don’t see us winning this one this season with holtby), Green baby 52 summoned his former studliness, and lastly, Ovechkin.

    All things considered, big win by the boys but it means nothing if we don’t continue to get wins. But I think its possible!

    #rego
    #Imissyouminiovi

  • Myan

    The secret to beating any Bruce Boudreau team is Halak.

  • William

    Great Win for the caps, really big night from Halak. Probably the only reason we won.

  • John M

    How soon will Holtby request a trade?

  • Eric Schulz

    As a Caps’ fan, it’s natural to assume my problem with the officials is due to bias, but I’m a hockey fan first… I’ve watched MANY teams over the past decade, and NO team gets as consistently screwed by officials as the Caps. Especially with the bullshit too many men call. The Ducks had 7 skaters on the ice (with Hiller in the net) when charging through the neutral zone with about 3 mins left, shockingly, no call. The constant interference and hooking by the Ducks that went uncalled, coupled with so much crap called by the officials (the puck over the bench, the Selanne dive) really pisses me off.
    I always hear about how the refs will “even it up,” but after the 5-on-3, the Ducks got away with tripping Ward behind the net, then trying to tackle Fehr through the neutral zone… then Green gets called for maybe hitting Getzlaf’s glove with his stick on the way down after a stick-lift. I don’t get it. Are the officials REALLY this bad? Hard to believe.

  • William

    Hopefully he won’t. I still feel he’s the future of the team

  • David Rothman

    “Mathieu Perreault should never have been traded.”

    Not too long ago, you referred to him as “trade bait”. He’s been called “too inconsistent”, “a spare part”, “expendable”, “redundant”, etc etc. Caps fans, along with the surrounding blogosphere, deserve some blame for him being run out of town.

    Guess sometimes you don’t know what you had until it’s gone.

  • Eric Schulz

    He was joking.

  • Matthew Kory

    Rooting FOR a team with Halak in goal and AGAINST a team with Perreault and coached by Boudreau is the weirdness.

  • William

    Thanks. Its late for me

  • yv

    Adam Oates won this duel of coaches with his lines. Caps played sound defense with Caps GT again halaking BB while PP finishing the job. Hope it would be some gifs of MP85/22 versus Fehr16 in faceoffs, who should be still Caps linemates.

  • Adam Schwager

    Yah both teams were doing the same things 20 times over and it seemed that one out of every twenty times it happened it was a penalty. But… it was a Caps penalty. The Caps got away with calls too, but the touch calls were ridiculous.

  • Eric Schulz

    I mean, Beagle’s was a penalty… but the Ducks did the same thing to Ward a few minutes prior, nothing. The too many men thing was legit… but man, I never see the other team get called, even if they have 12 guys out there. And to see Selanne draw a penalty just by diving… I mean, yeah, we all know it’s reputation; if you high-stick Semin, he’ll get called for diving. BUT, didn’t the officials see a replay? It would’ve been surprising to me that they didn’t fix their mistake with an even-up call, save that I know the Caps never get that shit; any other team though, and I’d’ve been surprised by no make-up call.
    I hate to complain about refs… but I hate it even more when they try to screw us. If you take away all the bullshit calls, we dominated the Ducks tonight.

  • dylan wheatley

    winning happens

  • Myan

    I’m really happy about the win but seriously, what the hell is Oates doing with these ineffective line combinations? Kuzya-Beagle-Wilson was a stroke of genius that got two of our top prospects playing their best games yet. Why would you break this line up? Doesn’t it make sense to play a new skill guy with some gritty North American boys who can fight it out against the boards? I hope we don’t see Brouwer-Backstrom-Kuzya again.

  • Justin

    Sweet dreams, everybody!!!

  • Dave

    Having Perreault score a goal against us while Beagle is centering the top line should be a slap in GMGM’s face.

  • Myan

    OMG please tell me you did not just make this on Photoshop.

  • Myan

    They also missed the too many men call on Anaheim’s 1st goal! There were a lot of really awful calls against us for minor things and at least 2 offside calls that were missed. No wonder Ducks have such a great home record…their ice is horrendous and refs let them get away with a lot.

  • Justin

    L’il Ovi… it’s pretty late right now.

  • Matt Root
  • Halak Attak

    The last few minutes of this game probably took a decade off my life.

  • Roman Z.

    Who is “Mark” Chimera?

  • Alicia

    This has never happened before, the Capitals won a game in California that I attended. Yeah!!!! I went to the game expecting to do the walk of shame since I was wearing a Caps shirt but to my surprise they didn’t blow it. No overtime and no shoot out necessary. Miracles do happen.

  • Matt Lauer

    Was in the building for this one tonight, fun win, good times all around. I’m both happy and somewhat flummoxed to report the following:

    1) Caps fans were well-represented in the audience. Fair amount of noise after all the goals. Good stuff.
    2) I heard someone call the intermissions “halftimes” at one point.
    3) There was a guy with a #88 red caps jersey and a pair of shorts made out of a Maryland flag.
    4) It’s amazing that a team as good as the Ducks can’t fill their own building. The Honda Center is big, and surprisingly sparse in places.

    Otherwise, huzzah! I’m hoping to be in the Staples Center Thursday, as well.

  • M Taylor

    His name is now omitted from the Caps Kids Club pitch…..
    And Oates is a hypocrite, he spouts all this bunk about giving the veteran players their due, but treats the goaltenders with no respect this whole season.

  • Matt Root

    Love catching games at the duck pond.. didnt make this one unfortunately but happy for you to see em’ win

  • Owen Johnson

    A tight end for the Packers in the late 90s whose career ended on criminal charges for sexually assaulting a 17 year old babysitter.

  • Matt Root

    Wish I could have gone.. may check around what people are wanting for last-minute tickets in LA. Will hit you up if I can make it.

    And you’re absolutely right.. lots of empty seats in the Honda center. Sad to see, especially with that talented of a team. Also, I’ve never had a bad time at Honda center unlike the awful section of Kings fans last year. Glad you were able to go man.

    +1 for using Huzzah haha

  • JenniferH

    Really? His name is now omitted? That tells us all we need to know. So much for GMGM’s words about how much he values Holtby. John M may have been joking, but I do wonder how long Holtby is for this team now. It’s quite obvious they don’t care about keeping him at all.

  • JenniferH

    Gotta be honest, I was not expecting us to win, but we did, so two points. YES! Two very badly needed points. Let’s keep this going, boys!

  • JSP

    That was Mark Chmura, and he was acquitted of those charges. You didn’t misspeak, but if you’re going to say he was charged with a sex crime, you should mention he was acquitted. Very unfair otherwise.

  • Diller M

    Ovi is out there to score EN goals. Hunter NEVER put him out there in that scinerio and we NEVER scored EN goals with Hunter despite the fact that every game was a one goal game. Ovi on the ice forces the trailing team to play a little honest, MOJO I have no idea, he doesn’t really add much in that scenario. Other than that I agree with everything.

  • Jonah

    A Bruce Boudreau team collapsing late in the season after dominating all the regular season?
    Say it ain’t so!
    Also very good game, ready to run Oates out of town pickforks and all.

  • Hockey mom

    That is true, but is suspect that it’s more about supplies running low on the Braden Holtby lunchbox. My daughter had been wanting one all season and finally got one on Sunday!

    So, I wouldn’t read too much into THAT aspect of this scenario. In terms of Halak, I think we are just trying to get our money’s worth out of him while we have him.

  • CF74

    Can’t tell if sarcasm or just really overdramatic Holtby fan.

    But seriously. Holtby ain’t going nowhere (he’s locked up for another year on a cheap deal AND he’s a RFA), and to throw yourself into a pout about how he isn’t valued is just silly. The season is almost over, and a lot of promotional material is changing and being updated. Halak is a veteran and is playing excellent goal right now. If Holtby is going to go into a tailspin over having to sit for a while– when he himself has played the role of the unexpected starter– then that reflects more poorly on him. But I doubt he will– he’s a professional, and you can be pretty sure he’s not sitting around going “Oh noes, they took my name off some promotional material, they don’t value me.”

    if they didn’t care about Holtby, they’d trade him. Slow your roll before you go on some warpath.

  • Jake Ettawakapow

    At these dying moments I would put out Ward, Beagle, Chimmer, Backstrom, Brouwer and Wilson. I don’t know why Oates puts Johansson on the PK and both out on crucial times where we need to hold a goal or two with under a minute remaining. And yeah, hats off to Halak. He was spot on last night, and at the dying seconds, robbes matty p. Oh man. Hope we can pull of wins in LA and SJ.

  • Jimmie

    Apparently, the people who run the team disagree. :/

  • Alex

    I met him at Cabin John Ice Rink a few years ago. He’s a quirky guy sometimes.

  • Nathan Olmstead

    ExtraSkater down for maintenance. Anyone have the advanced stats for the Ovi-Beagle line last night? They looked pretty solid to me (to my surprise)

  • selftitled85

    Huge shout out for the “Hard to Kill” reference.

  • VirginiaPatriot

    Sometimes?

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

    They were 48% corsi with like 10 minutes to go in rego. I was happy with it.

  • Alex

    Lol ok fine, all the time.

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

    I can’t find me referring to him as trade bait. There was an article by Neil from like 2010 about that, but it was before Perreault played 20 NHL games.

    I’ve been a pretty big fan of his since under Hunter.

    Over the summer, I did say he’d be a good second line center (better than Brooks). I don’t see me calling him trade bait. If I did, there might have been important context. Help me out?

  • Roman Z.

    The Anaheim Ducks broadcasting team says thanks for the clarification.

  • Nathan Olmstead

    Ovi also got 5 shots last night, compared to 1 against Toronto.

  • Bob

    I can’t believe that no one is talking about Backstrom as “The straw that stirs the drink.” I demand a t-shirt!!!

  • Diller M

    I hate to complain about refs… but I hate it even more when they try to screw us.

    Practice internalization not externalization, we are not a good puck posession team, refs or not.

  • Myan

    What font is that 22 in?

  • Mike Gaudiello

    I still wonder if Halak is merely a rental so we could get Neuvy out of DC as requested. I think Halak is fitting in well, but something tells me he’ll want at least another 4-year deal and GMGM will get his signature ants-in-the-pants about that come July. Gut feeling says 70-31 in goal come October ’14.

  • David Rothman

    Check out @peterhassett’s Tweet: https://twitter.com/peterhassett/status/220906248290308097

    Copied and pasted from my phone, bout this was in reference to MP. From July 2012.

  • Matt Lauer

    Agreed. And I also thought that Wilson had a great game tonight — he hustled more than anybody else and was actually on the puck a fair amount, despite somewhat middling ice time. A Kuzya-Wilson reunion is in order, methinks.

  • Matt Lauer

    Definitely, man. I haven’t got any tix yet so just hit me up whenever.

  • Owen Johnson

    We NEVER scored EN goals with Hunter because Hunter hated having more than a 1 goal lead.

  • Owen Johnson

    Honestly didn’t know he was acquitted. I just remember my 7th grade gym teacher going off about how horrible he was. Thanks for clearing it up.
    And I know his name is Chmura, but close enough.

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

    Ah, yes. Nice pull. So here’s the context there:

    Perreault’s 2011-12 Sh% was 26.7% (highest in the league IIRC). It’s been half that since. even then he was a strong depth possession player, but the team had a number of them at the time. A year later, not so much: Halpern, Eakin, Aucoin. Plus Semin in the top six.

    I also think “tradebait” has a different connotation (e.g. this guy sucks and should be dealt) than what I said, which was “here’s a very valuable, trade-able asset on a team that has a number of options in that same position.”

    Finally, the trade that sent Matty to ANA was for tablescraps— well south of what he was worth– probably because WSH was desperate for some reason to make cap space for Wilson and his 7 minutes a night.

  • Jonah

    Anaheim broadcast said “ward and chimera have been the dominant line as of late for the capitals”
    “As of late” must be the California way of saying “since October 1st”
    Seriously, those guys are total studs and are killing it as 3rd(1st) line.

  • Diller M

    Our best chance at making the playoffs is catching Toronto. They are only 2 ROW wins ahead of us and they are slumping now. Interestingly enough, if Detroit were to lose one of their next two in OT and lose the other in rego, they would jump over us because of ROW wins (26v25) even though we have more total wins (33v31)! We would be punished for winning in the SO. That doesn’t seem right.

  • Diller M

    WSH was desperate for some reason to make cap space for Wilson and his 7 minutes a night.

    LOL good decision GMGM, some of his decisions are great (the Varly trade) sometimes the decisions are just comical.

  • Tom Martin

    Why is MJ90 not playing center right now. It makes zero sense. ugh

  • Rhino40

    Since we seem to be on track to try every possible line combo, I submit the following for discussion:

    Penner-Bäckis-Ovi
    MoJo-Zhenya-Wilson/Brouwer
    Ward-Fehr-Chimera (u can’t touch this)
    Brouwer/Wilson-Beagle-Wellman

    (pending return of Grabovski as 2C…Which could then create the possiblity of an All-Russian line which we have not seen since we had Feds & Kozlov (sp?).

    Alzner/Green
    Carlson/Orlov
    Hillen/Wey
    Thoughts?

  • Diller M

    How do you figure we won this dual with coaching and lines? We won with puck luck and another perfect shot from the world’s greatest goal scoarer. Other than that, we lost. We were slow and sloppy (6 penalties) and throughly out possessed. If we played 7 they would win in 5.

  • Diller M

    Happy based on the Caps recent play? Or happy in a vaccuum. One suggests a lowering of expectations, one an improving team.

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

    TOR is on a 93-94 point pace
    CBJ is on a 91-92 point pace
    DET is on a 90-91 point pace
    WSH is on a 89 point pace

    TOR has a pretty soft schedule. Flames, Jets, Panthers, Sens.
    CBJ’s is tougher, but they’ve got 2 against the Isles and the Panthers as well.
    DET’s schedule looks really tough to me, though they’ve got a gimme against Buffalo.
    If WSH can get through next week without slipping (basically by almost sweeping the Cali teams and the Bruins next weekend), I think they can catch both CBJ and DET.

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

    That was better than what I expected from Ovi+Beagle I guess.

  • yv

    B/c Caps won. They needed this particular win more than ever and they got it. Oates reshuffled lines by necessity to make them more defensively responsible regardless of possession or whatever, b/c current Caps wouldn’t out possess Ducks/Kings/Sharks anyway. Ovis line for the first time in eons didn’t lose the battle and he didn’t got another embarrassing minus and that was the whole idea, hold in ES and decide in PPs. Oates would probably repeat these lines for other Cal games.

  • Diller M

    Thats how i interpreted it, just curious.

  • ringtail

    Agree that I wish Perreault were still with the Caps but it’s Oates’ fault he’s not. Too many auditions of other players as centers and a couple of benchings sent a message and Matty P heard it. He asked to be traded, did he not? And for good reason. Bruuuuuuuuce believes in him but Oates did not.

  • Diller M

    I love the idea of a russian line and a swedish line once forsberg comes up

  • Catherine__M

    I can’t tell if you’re joking about Forsberg….

  • Alicia

    After seeing games at the Verizon Center, it is a bit of a let down attending any other arena. I have been to all of the California venues and I am always surprised about how quiet the fans are. At one point during the game last night, I heard “Lets go Caps” being chanted louder than the Ducks chant. I was a bit proud of my fellow Capitals fans at that moment.
    I was in the second row half of my row was empty. It only filled up after the 1st period because fans from other sections came down and took the seats. I was feeling a little lonely, so I appreciated the company. Never thought I would say that about a hockey game. I saw Caps jerseys with names such as Knuble, Semin, Steckel and good old Matty P. I wanted to hug them all.

  • Ross Herman

    favorite quote “and he’s adorable like a woodland creature” i love it

  • Diller M

    LOL, not joking, just too tired…. I meant Burkovsky

  • Jonah

    kuzya-beagle-wilson was the only time that oates’ system (ignore the new guy and drop him to the 4th as seen in erat, willy, kuzya, penner) actually seemed to work. then of course the oates RNG took over.

  • Diller M

    I think CBJ is a lock, sadly…
    Detroit is too banged up, I think we will stay ahead. We are also closest to DET in ROW.

    I just hate the way TOR plays, they rely on shooting and save % too much, I don’t think they will finish well, as Kessel is cooling off a bit.

    Now we don’t play well either, so I think its a matter of coasting to a finish here. The only saving grace is that we seem to be trending up over the past few games, and they seem to be trending down (4 wins in the last 10)

  • Diller M

    It still hurts so much…

  • Diller M

    It’s a sad state of affairs that some would prefer Hunter to Oates at this point.

  • Matt Lauer

    Were you down by those guys who had the colored mohawks? I saw them from up in the nosebleeds where I was. Thought about trundling down, myself.

  • Myan

    Ugh tell me about it. Oates & GMGM are all about “the system” and when they talk about our problems they chalk our losses to “we need to play better…we need to execute better.” Isn’t the entire barometer for successful coaching being able to implement a system that the team can consistently execute? It doesn’t matter how great you think your system is…if the team you have can’t execute the system 90% of the time, it isn’t a great system! It just doesn’t work! Great coaches take the players they have and build easily-executable systems that make the most of the players’ abilities. It’s painfully clear that Adam Oates has not done that in DC.

  • RT23

    I agree with most of your lines with a few exceptions. Brouwer has improved lately and should stay on 2nd line. A few months ago I would have been for experimenting with swapping him for Wilson but not right now. I also would consider swapping Backstrom and Mojo but I haven’t been impressed with the 92-19-20 combo. I thought that was a good idea but no spark yet.

    I know people say he can’t play NHL center, not yet anyway but I’m intrigued at the idea of 17-92-8. I wonder if Penner has any FO talent? Maybe he could take the draws.

    On the D pairings, yours are good but I was happy with last night’s pairings also. Why shake that up.

  • David Rothman

    I didn’t make up that “trade bait” phrase out of thin air, good sir. I was able to find it now that I’m using a computer and not a phone:

    In my opinion, Lil Matty Perreault is yummy trade bait.— Peter Hassett (@peterhassett:disqus ) July 5, 2012

    From July 5, 2012…after Hunter’s departure. Now I only make a stink out of this because of how awesome this blog is: it’s expanded my knowledge of hockey, it makes me laugh, and it’s just awesome all around. Plus you guys throw sweet parties. And maybe I’m overestimating it, but I think you guys carry a lot of influence, as evidenced by the fact that Uncle Ted links to you guys and as of this season, you’re featured on CRL. Ultimately it was GMGM’s bonehead move, and he deserves the majority of the blame. BUT, you guys weren’t exactly touting his praises before 2013, and therefore deserve a sliver of the blame for his departure out of town.

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

    I appreciate you doing the research, but I think you missed the point of that 2012 discussion.

    Perreault was at the time overvalued (by virtue of his sh%). He would have been a great chip to deal then.

    (Perhaps “trade bait” was a bit too colorful.)

    The situation was dramatically different after 2012. Perreault was still a strong player, but not a potential 20-goal sniper (affecting his market value, not his value to the Caps). More importantly, his role on the team (i.e. good depth forward) *should* have made him indispensable, but the Caps didn’t recognize that, so they traded him to free up space for Tom Wilson.

    I stand by it.

  • David Rothman

    Bold of you to stand by it, but it was short sighted of you, especially given this teams historical lack of center depth. Let’s look at the players you listed:

    Knuble: 35+ at the time, was on last year of contract. Not a center.

    Halpern: 35+ at the time, was on 1 year contract

    Aucoin: career minor league in his early thirties

    Eakin: I’ll give you that one, I like Eakin.

    Semin: not a center.

    Regarding the surrounding shooting % argument…you were incorrect then. No one was arguing that he would keep shooting at 26.7% accuracy, but that was a silly argument then and it’s a silly argument now. He’s always been a possession monster and an efficient point producer. His 2.55 points/60 at evens this year would be the best rate on the Caps. His faceoff % would be 2nd best behind Beagle. He has more goals this year (in fewer games (edit: not fewer games than Laich)) than: Brooks Laich, Marcus Johassnson, Jason Chimera, Mikhail Grabovski, and Eric Fehr. Somehow he’s managed that while shooting 14.6%. Who knew that you could mitigate a drop in shooting accuracy with more shots?

    Yes you were right, calling him “trade bait” implied “this guy sucks and should be dealt”. By not recognizing his value then, I believed you helped perpetuate the notion that he was expendable among the fanbase, and possibly among management. Cheap, possession-driving, playmaking centers are valuable commodities that should be held on to.

    As I said in my first post, sometimes you don’t know what you have until it’s gone.

  • Hockey mom

    They are on Cali time, it’s all whatevs…you know?

  • Alicia

    No, I didn’t see any colored mohawks. I was surrounded by Ducks fans (I must say they were all very nice to me) and the guy in front of me kept saying, “Go away Ward!” every time he got close to the net, which amused me because I didn’t think a fan of a different team would know of Ward’s skills. I usually get nosebleed seats for hockey games but I always save money to get good seats to see the Capitals, since it is so rare here in southern CA.

  • Catherine__M

    Haha! I thought I’d missed some really big and confusing news. Ah well.

  • Jonah

    i don’t beleive that he requested a trade. in an interview i saw after it he said he was surprised but that he “saw the writing on the wall” ie: other players getting shopped at his role. i don’t think he formally requested a trade to GMGM or AO

  • Jonah

    that is so true. also i watch the games very carefully and understand it as a player, and after almost a year and a halfi have no idea what the oates 5v5 system is!
    there is no established cycle throughout the lineup, no clear breakout or defensive strategy, only thing i see is the insane power play which he somehow has got to work magic this year. all the great teams: hawks, kings, rangers, blues, pens have a system that every player buys into and executes. you know what type of game you will be playing against those teams every night. oates’ caps seem to have no idea what theyre doing out there.

  • Red Baron

    It’s weird to see you outside of Japers Rink, spouting off about Perreault yet again. Dawg, he’s gone. And he was a good player (though I would not argue indispensable or elite), but you constantly act like the Capitals threw away the second coming of Gretzky in him. It’s borderline creepy. Normally I’d sympathize with you, because it’s never fun to see your favorite get traded, but Jesus Christ:

    “By not recognizing his value then, I believed you helped perpetuate the notion that he was expendable among the fanbase, and possibly among management.”
    For real? Chill the fuck OUT, dude. Way to overstate and over-attribute.

  • David Rothman

    Yeah, so weird that I’m discussing Perreault right after the Caps just faced his team. “Capitals threw away the second coming of Gretzky in him”…ummm, I’m pretty sure saying “he could play 2C or 3C” is a long way from saying he’s Gretzky.

    I think it’s universally accepted that trading Perreault was a mistake, arguing over shooting %s or what his ceiling is moot. It continues to be relevant because the Caps sorely lack center depth, a weakness even more glaring with Grabo out of the lineup (and there’s no guarantee he’ll sign here). My issue was with Peter saying on Twitter and in various posts on here that it was a mistake to trade him; which seems to have contradicted what he said before on the matter. I said fans and the blogosphere deserve a “sliver” of the blame, obviously most of the blame goes to GMGM and/or Oates.

    If you don’t like what I write on the internet, then I have a simple solution: don’t read it. There’s no need for a personal attack.