cody-eakin-goal

Photo: Ronald Martinez

During the 2012 NHL Draft, the Washington Capitals sent a B-level prospect to the Dallas Stars for Mike Ribeiro. The then 33-year-old Ribs played one season for the Caps as the team’s second-line center. His overall possession numbers were disappointing, but hey, he collected power-play points like coins in Super Mario.

George McPhee offered Ribeiro a contract extension at the trade deadline that year. Ribeiro did not agree to the deal, so McPhee traded Filip Forsberg for a top six-depth in Martin Erat, and Ribeiro walked away for nothing on the first day of free agency before signing a ridiculous five-year deal with the Phoenix Coyotes.

Meanwhile, that B-level prospect that the Caps gave up was Cody Eakin, who has become quite a player in Dallas.

Continue Reading

Tagged with:
 

carcillo-middle-finger

Photo: @DaveSem

WARNING: This post may upset readers who get emotional about human fingers. Not all of the fingers. Just the one in the middle.

Last night, the Philadelphia Flyers hosted a home playoff game for the first time since 2012, when they lost to the eventual Eastern Conference champions, the New Jersey Devils, in five games. The Flyers lost again on Tuesday, this time getting smacked 4-1 by the New York Rangers. They are down 2-1 in the series.

This first round match-up isn’t over yet, but some Flyers fans are already melting down. After a goal by Martin St. Louis put the Rangers up 2-0, a Flyers fan flipped him off. It made for good TV.

Continue Reading

The Three Futures of the Washington Capitals

It’s been ten days since the Washington Capitals’ season ended and the proverbial axe has yet to fall. As of press time, both George McPhee and Adam Oates are still gainfully employed. That has some people upset.

I get it. I’m a bit surprised the team hasn’t acted yet. And this period of uncertainty doesn’t come without consequences, among them the possible loss of pending free agent Mikhail Grabovski. That would be bad, but I’m trying to see it from the owners’ perspective.

The Caps are at a fork in the road. I can see three potential futures ahead of the team, and now Ted Leonsis has to choose one. It’s a daunting decision, one that merits careful deliberation and planning. If the Caps pick incorrectly– or fail to properly execute that decision– things could get grim and dark. Things could get grimdark.

Here are all the ways I can I see it going.

Continue Reading

Tagged with:
 

columbus-blue-jackets-flag-penguins-exhibit

Photo: @tim_guthrie

Since entering the NHL in 2000, the Columbus Blue Jackets have been a laughingstock. Sure, Rick Nash’s goal scoring gave them some respectability, and they had that weird playoff appearance in 2009, but it wasn’t until last week that I finally found respect for the franchise and its fans.

First, on Saturday, Columbus won its first ever playoff game. They beat the Pens (whom I really, really hate) in double overtime.

Then something magical happened at the Columbus Zoo, which changed everything.

Continue Reading

Apparently, Pavel Datsyuk is the Magic Man

the-magic-man-datsyuk

Bad photoshop by me

After scoring one of the prettiest goals of the year, Pavel Datsyuk nabbed all the headlines after the Wings-Bruins game on Friday night. In the neutral zone, the 35-year-old Russian reached behind his body, pulled a puck through his legs, skated into Boston’s offensive zone, and scored. That was the game one game-winner.

Appreciate this ish.

Continue Reading

Tagged with:
 

John Carlson, drafted in 2008, is the most recent Caps defenseman selected in the first round. (Photo: Andre Ringuette/Getty)

Reading the comments in Ian’s post covering the draft lottery, most fans seem convinced that the Capitals must select Haydn Fleury with their 13th pick, if he’s available. It’s easy to see why: Fleury, who plays for the Red Deer Rebels of the WHL, is a responsible defenseman in a draft dominated by forwards. It is likely that 13 out of the 15 top picks will be forwards. And the Caps blue line struggled with injuries and inconsistency all year long. Defense hasn’t been Washington’s forte for the better part of the Ovechkin era, and those defensive shortcomings have often been pegged as the key to the Caps’ early playoff exits (or, this year, pre-playoff exits).

Despite all of this, I’ll disagree with the notion that the Caps should select Fleury, or any other defenseman, with their first-round pick.

Continue Reading

Tagged with:
 

RMNB’s Really Bad Stanley Cup Playoff Predictions

Bracket

The Stanley Cup playoffs start today, and the Washington Capitals aren’t a part of it. While that sucks, life must go on. The good news is that the quarterfinal round is the best week or two of hockey all year, and there’s a bunch of good match-ups to watch. There’s also a couple of garbage match-ups too, but what are you gonna do?

I’ve asked the RMNB crew to share their brackets, and they did, and they’re all really bad. Even mine is bad. Not as bad as theirs, but still really, really bad. Making predictions is a sucker’s game.

Come read our stupid predictions and share your own in the comments!

Continue Reading

Adam+Oates+Toronto+Maple+Leafs+v+Washington+tGuDHBOHnoFl

Photo: Greg Fiume

If — for some crazy reason– the Capitals choose not to retain the services of Adam Oates after this season, they’re going to have to find a replacement.

That has got me worried. I don’t want the organization to have to go through a lengthy and expensive search for The Right Guy For The Job. I don’t want them to waste precious days and weeks hunting down an experienced coach who knows the value of puck possession and how to optimize high-end scoring talent.

So, to save time, RMNB has compiled this list of former Capitals players who already have a bunch of red clothes and stuff and they probably already have directions to Kettler programmed into their GPS.

You’re welcome, guys. Don’t overthink it. Just grab one of these dudes and watch the Cups pour in.

Continue Reading

 

Jaroslav Halak’s Agent Has Beef With Adam Oates

jaroslav-halak-beefing

Photo: Bruce Bennett

In a season that has been inordinately long and drama-filled, here comes MOAR drama! On Tuesday, Washington Capitals head coach Adam Oates announced that Jaroslav Halak would not start against his old team because Halak reportedly said he didn’t feel “100% comfortable” playing. Halak then spent most of the afternoon getting criticized by local and national media for a lack of desire and toughness. We thought this conversation should have stayed private.

Halak’s agent, Allan Walsh, has issued a statement and apparently he agrees with us. I hope you’re ready for some venom, Oatesy.

Continue Reading

Tagged with:
 

halak-not-playing

Photo: Alex Brandon

The Washington Capitals have less than a 5% chance of making the playoffs. Tonight, they take on the best team in the Western Conference, the St. Louis Blues, in what is practically an elimination game. They need everyone on board. Unfortunately, not everyone is on board.

Speaking with the press today in St. Louis, Adam Oates revealed Braden Holtby will be starting tonight. That wasn’t too surprising until Oates explained the reasoning behind the move. Jaroslav Halak had told the coaching staff he was uncomfortable playing against his former team.

Continue Reading

Tagged with: