nathan-walker9

Photo: Mark Bradford/Wulos

At Friday’s Rookie Camp, Washington Capitals prospect Nathan Walker was asked what the reception was like in Australia after he became the first countryman ever to be drafted into the NHL.

“It wasn’t as big [a deal] as I guess I was expecting,” Walker said to the media, captured by Monumental Network. “As you know, hockey’s not as big down there. I wasn’t making front pages or anything like that. But yeah, I had a couple of gigs and a couple of photoshoots.”

When asked what his weirdest photoshoot experience was, Walker dropped the single best nugget of his young career.

“I wouldn’t say the weirdest one, but the best one was the one where I got to take photos with kangaroos and koalas,” Walker said with a big smile. “That was pretty cool. They were all hoppin’ around everywhere. It was pretty good.”

[Emphasis added because kangaroos "hoppin' around everywhere "demands to be emphasized.]

I needed to know moar. I needed to see moar. I tracked down Walker’s Australian representation and begged for proof.

Prepare for some of the greatest hockey photos ever to hockey: Aussie edition.

Continue Reading

Tagged with:
 

Capitals Rookie Camp Begins Today

Andre Burakovsky during last year’s rookie game. (Photo: Chris Gordon)

Preparation for 2014-15 NHL season begins this week as rookie camps kick off around the league. Capitals’ camp will start today, and will end next Tuesday with a 3PM rookie game that has been held every (non-lockout-shortened) year since the Caps’ re-build.

Continue Reading

Washington Capitals Prospect Rankings: Summer 2014

Andre Burakovsky is the best Caps prospect yet to play a game with the big club (Photo: Elsa/Getty Images).

With rookie camp upon us, RMNB presents the new edition of its semiannual prospect rankings.

Prospect rankings factor in a player’s potential, his probability to reach his ceiling (including an assessment of that player’s adaptation to NHL’s style of play), and physical and mental maturity.

The Caps prospect pool is considered top-heavy, with four Caps prospects ranked in top-50 league-wide by both Corey Pronman and NHL.com. However, there’s believed to be a significant drop-off in talent after that. While Capitals management has tried to make their prospect pool deeper, they’ve still got work to do. The Caps are considered thin at center in particular, underlined by auditioning their two top wingers for a center slot.

Continue Reading

Photo: Tim Stough / Sweetest Hockey On Earth

The Washington Capitals have signed 2014 third-round pick Nathan Walker to a three-year entry-level contract. The 20-year-old becomes the first-ever Australian national to sign with an NHL team. Crikey!

Walker made his preseason debut with the Caps last season, playing as an unrestricted free agent on a tryout contract. He was one of the more impressive players during camp, showing off his speed, tenacious forechecking, and skill. His through-the-legs pass to Tom Wilson for a goal appeared on SportsCenter last September.

Continue Reading

Tagged with:
 

madison-bowey

Photo from our Instagram, which you should totally already be following.

The Capitals’ NHL blue line is the deepest it has been in years, and the farm is starting to get stacked with defensive prospects as well. Nate Schmidt, Patrick Wey, and Connor Carrick have each shown that they will soon be ready to take the next step. Also developing rapidly: 2013 second-round pick Madison Bowey.

During last week’s Development Camp, the 19-year-old was one of the most mature prospects out on the ice. He dominated Saturday’s scrimmage, creating a number of chances on the rush.

Bowey’s most creative effort came early, a ridiculous no-look pass that led to Nathan Walker’s goal.

Continue Reading

Photo: Washington Capitals

The Capitals have traded up again to get a pick in the third round back, moving the 104th and 118th overall picks for 89th overall selection. They then selected Australian forward Nathan Walker from the Hershey Bears of the AHL.

Continue Reading

Tagged with:
 

Nathan Walker

Photo credit: Sweetest Hockey On Earth’s Kyle Mace

Sunday night, the Hershey Bears’ Nathan Walker became the first Australian to score a goal in the American Hockey League. He also was the first Australian to get in a barney, dropping mitts in the first period with Norfolk’s Charles Sarault.

Continue Reading

Tagged with:
 

nathan walker hershey bears-2

Photo: Kyle Mace

After the Hershey Bears’ season-opening loss to the Adirondack Phantoms on Saturday, the Bears auctioned off the retro 1949-50 jerseys they wore. For $1,150, somebody walked out of Giant Center with a piece of hockey history.

Bears forward Nathan Walker, who was quite impressive during Washington Capitals training camp, became the first Australian hockey player ever to suit up for the American Hockey League.

Another AHL, the Australian Ice Hockey League, where Walker played parts of two seasons with the Sydney Ice Dogs, tweeted out their congratulations after the game.

Continue Reading

Tagged with:
 


Photo credit: Capitals Overtime

According to Katie Carrera, the Washington Capitals have assigned Nathan Walker and three other players to Hershey.

During the Caps Convention, Caps general manager George McPhee said Walker has signed a one-year AHL deal with Hershey:

The Australian forward, as Mike Vogel tweeted Thursday, couldn’t be signed to an NHL contract due to what’s known as the “Tomas Hyka Rule”.

Continue Reading

Tagged with:
 

walker-to-wilson-goal

For those of you who still watch SportsCenter, you’re already aware they have a Top Ten list plays that airs every day. It rarely includes hockey.  …Except on Wednesday, when a certain almost-Capital made the list. If they get ESPN down in Australia, I’m pretty sure the Walker family and friends are looking stunned mullet right now (that means they’re surprised, or something).

Nathan Walker, who Craig Laughlin said was the best player on the ice during last night’s Baltimore Hockey Classic, hit number eight on the the top ten. Walker’s sick unbelievable pass to Tom Wilson earned the honors, the same pass that resulted in Wilson’s first goal of the preseason. The Aussie split the wickets of Joseph Morrow’s legs to set up The Ten Train for a straightforward one-timer.

Walker unofficially has one goal and one assist in two games. He also earned a penalty shot against the Boston Bruins.

Continue Reading