2011-12 Year-End Review: Cody Eakin


Photo credit: Toni L. Sandys

In a difficult season, it’s good to have someone like Cody Eakin around. He is young, filled with hope and enthusiasm. We gotta use that up quick before the real world inevitably crushes his spirit.

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Karl Alzner’s Dogs Can Escape Crates

Despite his strong play throughout the season, Karl Alzner might be more famous lately for his dogs’ bad behavior.

A month ago, as Alzner and his fiancee Mandy left for Game Three against the Rangers, they decided to leave their dogs out of their crate for the night. Of course, that was the night that the game went into triple overtime, and when the two returned at 2 AM, their dogs Charlie, Murphy, and Duncan had trashed their home.

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2011-12 Year-End Review: Jason Chimera


Photo credit: Elsa

Jason Chimera had a pretty good year by any standard. He set a new personal scoring record, became an important depth player for the team, and generally used his speed to make opposing players look silly whenever he was on the ice. Though we’d rather see Chimera still playing hockey than throwing out pitches at Orioles games, we couldn’t have asked anything more from the speedy winger this season.

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2011-12 Year-End Review: John Carlson


Photo credit: Elise Amendola

The real question is, which is the real John Carlson? Was it the John Carlson who stumbled through the regular season, seemingly unfamiliar with the concept of ice hockey? Or was it the solid young defenseman that showed up in time for the playoffs, once again becoming one of the mainstays of the Capitals’ blueline?

For all our sakes, we are hoping it is the second. Sophomore year is over; it’s time for John Carlson to come out of the slump.

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2011-12 Year-End Review: Troy Brouwer


Photo credit: Howard Ullman

Troy Brouwer did a lot of hitting this year. To be specific, he hit two hundred and forty-seven times, leading the team in this category and landing in the top ten hitters in the NHL overall for the second year in a row. Shockingly, he also found time to do other things in between destroying opponents, such as score, and hold dogs.

We are in favor of players who can multitask. You can stay, Troy.

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2011-12 Year-End Review: Jay Beagle


Photo credit: Clydeorama

Brave and reckless fight. Concussion. Broken bones. Meteoric rise. We would watch a movie based on Jay Beagle‘s season, there was a lot of plot packed into just eighty-two games.

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2011-12 Year-End Review: Nicklas Backstrom


Photo credit: Clydeorama

This was not exactly the year that Nicklas Backstrom had imagined. After taking an elbow to the head from Rene Bourque in January, the Swedish center ended up on the sidelines for nearly half the year. While this didn’t do much to help the slow-motion train wreck that was the 2011-12 season, we are glad that the team was careful with Backstrom’s recovery, because we expect to see him in Caps red for a long time to come.

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2011-12 Year-End Review: Keith Aucoin


Photo credit: Clydeorama

Keith Aucoin‘s call-up was a side effect of the Great Center Drought of 2012, that point in time when all of our centers were either dead, or wingers disguised as centers. Even when the Caps are in need, they don’t typically send for Aucoin, but they did this year — and to the surprise of most people, Aucoin became a regular player, even into the postseason. We liked this, because Aucoin is a good guy who has been in our system for a long time, and because we love to be surprised. Go, tiny Cap.

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2011-12 Year-End Review: Karl Alzner

Photo credit: Clydeorama

[Ed. note: This summer, RMNB will review each Washington Capitals player. We will discuss each roster player by the standards we deem important, such as statistical performance and alternate-universe superhero identity. Enjoy.]

There was no sophomore slump for Karl Alzner. The Caps’ young stud defenseman continued to play big minutes in all situations and keep a level head while doing so. Sure, he made a few mistakes this season. Perhaps three and a half mistakes, but he has to do that, so that people don’t catch onto the fact that he’s perfect.

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Photo via: photo.khl.ru

The entire Russian national team was clearly elated to win World Championship gold this year, dominating their competition along the way and winning their final game 6-2. While there was a lot of the expected hugging and jumping around, former Cap Semyon Varlamov was especially overexcited, which led to a small mishap when he was handed the trophy.

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