Photo by Clyde Caplan, clydeorama.com
Editor’s Note: Amidst the excitement of tonight’s first playoff game, Caps fan Ashley Christoff decided to gather her co-workers and work on a special project today. We’ll let her explain below.
Alexander Semin picks up William after giving him his game jersey. (Photo credit: Shannon family)
Editor’s Note: By now, you’ve probably heard of William Shannon. He is five years old, has acute lymphoblastic leukemia and is everyone’s favorite little Capital. Thanks to the make a Wish-A-Wish foundation and the Caps, William had his dream realized and took the ice with Mike Green, Jason Chimera, D.J. King and Semyon Varlamov on Friday.
“This weekend was an incredible event!,” William’s father Devin Shannon said in an email. “William’s wish was to practice with the Capitals and he did! I can’t tell you how much everyone has done for us and what this weekend has meant for us.”
After practicing with the Caps, William’s journey continued on Saturday when he and his family took in Washington’s matchup with the Buffalo Sabres before riding the on the Zamboni and receiving the jersey off the back of Alexander Semin after the game. I’ll let Devin take it from here:
Day two was just as amazing as day one! Allyson Butler from Make-A-Wish met us in the hotel lobby and took us out to wait for our “ride” to the game! Within minutes a very long black stretch limo appeared before us! Bill, our driver, was very nice. William and Emily quickly climbed in and all we heard for a few minutes was: “Cool!” “This is so sweet!” Then we had chatty little ones for the short ride over to the Verizon Center! It is amazing how just the little things make such a huge impression! How neat it was for the kids to get out of the limo right in front of the Verizon Center with so many fans around wondering who the V.I.P. was!
Wideman gets helped off the ice after being crushed by Tuomo Ruutu. (Photo credit: Chris Gordon)
Editor’s Note: On Thursday, TSN’s Bob McKenzie reported that Dennis Wideman was in a Washington hospital with a significant leg hematoma as a result of a hit by Carolina’s Tuomo Ruutu. Later that night, Capitals officials confirmed that Wideman suffered a hematoma, likely compartment syndrome, but that muscle damage appeared limited. We had no idea what that was or the potential ramifications, so we thought, why don’t we ask two experts who actually know what’s going on.
Those experts are friends of the blog Catherine Gardner and Chris Gardner. Cat’s background includes having a bachelor’s degree in biology from UVa, 11 years EMS experience as a Nationally Registered Paramedic, six years as an EMT instructor, seven years of HS teaching experience and a NCEE (Nationally Certified EMS Educator) certification.
Chris has a degree in Astrophysics from UVa and a Masters in Systems Engineering from GWU. He also has 11 years of EMS experience as a volunteer in Prince William county in roles from Street Medic through Rescue Chief. Plus, these two went on dates to the Capital Centre to watch hockey and came back from their honeymoon in time to watch Game Four of the Stanley Cup finals against the Red Wings. So there really is no one better to ask. Take it away, guys.
Editor’s note: After two friends won an auction at Caps Care Casino Night, RMNB reader Julie Roemele was presented with the opportunity of a life-time: to learn hockey from some of her favorite NHL pros. This past Sunday, Kettler Capitals Iceplex hosted a Capitals hockey clinic featuring workshops from Brooks Laich, Matt Hendricks, Semyon Varlamov, Mike Green and Assistant Coach Bob Woods. Below, Julie describes her and her son Joshua’s experience.
When someone gives you the chance to learn from the best, you don’t pass it up. So when my friends Mark and John called to invite me to a hockey clinic with the Capitals that they’d won at the Caps Care Casino Night, I couldn’t feign disinterest because I was a little afraid I’d be unsteady on the ice. Admittedly I’m more hockey mom than hockey player, even though I’ve been taking lessons for a year now.
Once at Kettler, the participants (there were about 20 of us) were split into five groups of four to work at five different drill stations. First up, defense with Caps Assistant Coach, Bob Woods. He’d pass each of us the puck and instruct us to circle as if trying to lose an opposing player. He would then dump a puck into the end boards while we skated after. To be honest, I suck at this and I was glad when the ten minutes were up, but it’s a skill I need to improve if I’m going to be a better player. I’ll definitely keep practicing it.
Editor’s note: Nour H. is a reader with a talent for sweets. It’s good that she chose to user her powers for good, treating rookie John Carlson to a tasty cake for his 21st birthday. Here is Nour’s story.
There’s something cool about meeting someone you admire. Getting an autograph is nice, but sometimes you have to give back. A while ago I had a silly idea while watching the Caps practice with my friend Lindsey. John Carlson‘s birthday was coming up, his 21st, and I thought to make him a birthday cake. I was half joking. I mean, how could I even get it to him? I thought I would give it a shot anyway and asked an acquaintance if he could make it happen. The worst he could say was “no”.
It made my night when I got the official “OK.” He told me that he couldn’t promise a meeting, but that he could definitely give it to him. Didn’t matter to me. I just thought it would be cool to give him a cake. I had about a week to plan it out, and I didn’t want to waste any time. I wanted this to be one of the best cakes ever.
Editor’s note: One year ago, Emily Karol gave a newborn RMNB a kick in the pants with her report on the first Casino Night. This year she does the same with the added bonus of Chris Gordon’s photos.
By the way, Emily is looking for a roommate. Available February 1st, she’s got a single bedroom with a private bathroom and a walk-in closet located just 3 miles from Kettler Capitals Iceplex. Email her if you’re interested. Awesome people only, please. Take it away, Emily.
When I learned that the 2nd annual CapsCare Casino Night and Auction would take place on January 9th, I couldn’t be more excited. I attended the first Casino Night and had a blast, but this year’s festivities hit on the birthdays of both Bruce Boudreau and me. Who could pass up the chance to wear a pretty dress, drink some cocktails, and schmooze with fabulous people on your birthday? Not me.
Editor’s note: Reader Jerry Moxley is just your average, amateur hockey player, but he has got one of the greatest “meet your hero” stories we’ve ever read.
If you can make a living doing something you love, consider yourself lucky. I was able to take my interest in television and make a career out of it, but I put on my hockey skates too late to become more than a beer-league weekend warrior. With the birth of my second daughter, I decided to take more work on the side to pay the bills. One day, through Russian Machine Never Breaks and Carlyn Davis Casting, I learned that there was a commercial being filmed at my home rink in Laurel, MD that needed ice rink extras. I emailed the casting agency with the expectation that of a little extra money and maybe a spot in a blurry background somewhere. It turned out to be something bigger.
Editor’s note: Caps Snaps’ Chris Gordon was your man on the street for the Capitals’ outdoor skate at Chevy Chase yesterday. Here’s his report.
The Caps got a little taste of outdoor hockey on Wednesday at a venue that was somewhat less imposing than Heinz Field in Pittsburgh. The practice at the Chevy Chase Club’s rink was closed to the public, but with the Winter Classic just three days away it still attracted a sizable crowd of club members.
“I think we’ve been looking forward to this all year, since they announced it,” Mike Green said. “It couldn’t come quick enough, now here we are, able to play in the game on Saturday. I know everybody is excited.”
“You wish the whole season was played outdoors.” added Karl Alzner.
The players certainly had fun during their skate in the elements. Every member of the team sported eye black, but some players took it further than others, including captain Alex Ovechkin who drew a mustache above his upper lip. “Just have fun, like laugh,” Ovechkin said. “Like, make a joke.”
Capitals center Marcus Johansson raced down the left wing, picked up the loose puck and fired a cross-ice pass to Andrew Gordon, who jammed the puck past Devils goalie Martin Brodeur for his first career goal.
“When I first hit it, I didn’t know if it went in or not,” Gordon said after Wednesday’s practice at Kettler Capitals Iceplex. “Once I saw [the red light], it was a real good feeling getting the first goal for the team and just knowing I contributed.”
Editor’s note: Chris Gordon of Caps Snaps once again provides the hook-up. This time it’s the Capitals new gear for the Winter Classic being used at practice. Enjoy! All photos are credited to Caps Snaps.
The Caps took the ice at Kettler Capitals Iceplex on Friday wearing some new digs. The players rocked their Winter Classic uniforms during a hard practice before the team flew to Boston.
The goalies had some something new to show, too: their brand new masks.