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Photo: Amanda Bowen

One hundred sixty days after the Washington Capitals missed the playoffs for the first time since 2007, 66 players took to the ice in Arlington, Virginia looking to atone for a lost season. New head coach Barry Trotz put his players through a 45-minute practice and then a rigorous skate test, which left many exhausted, including Alex Ovechkin. This year’s training camp is supposed to be a hard one, part of Trotz’s plan to transform this team from an also-ran into a real success. The Caps have just two days of training camp to get their legs under them before the preseason opens on Sunday.

Below the jump are photos from the day via RMNB’s newest contributor, Amanda Bowen.

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The Micromanager: Adam Oates’s Downfall

Breakdown Day (12 of 12)

Gone. (Photo: Chris Gordon)

Adam Oates is a smart man. After going undrafted out of college, he turned into a Hall of Fame player. It wasn’t his skill that made him an NHL success, but his elite ability to notice things other people didn’t. Oates had a coaching mind in a player’s body.

“If Adam notices something in a game, he adjusts right away,” Ron Wilson, then the Caps coach, told SI in 2001. “Even if it’s only how somebody is holding his stick. He takes the information, processes it, and puts it to use. The thing about Adam is that he assimilates a lot of stuff at once. Most guys might see one or two things, and the rest is a blur.”

However, years later, when Oates became head coach of the Capitals, that obsession with improving individual players would undermine the team as a whole.

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Philipp Grubauer Talks Don Cherry, VHS, and Olie Kolzig


On Saturday, Ben R. got this German National Team jersey signed by Grubi.

On Saturday, Ben R. got this German National Team jersey signed by Grubi.

Photo credit: Bruce Bennett

For the ninth time in 11 games, Philipp Grubauer will be in net for the Washington Capitals on Monday. Originally called up to fill space on the bench while Michal Neuvirth was out with an ankle injury, Grubi has surprisingly become the Capitals’ number one netminder. And he has the numbers to back it up. Since being called up at the end of November, Grubauer has a save percentage of .937. During that same span, Braden Holtby has a save percentage of just .863. Adam Oates continues to play the hot hand. Sunday night, news broke that Neuvy was fed up, with his agent requesting a trade.

Since Grubauer is seeing so much ice time, Ian and I wanted to get to know the 22-year-old German better. Here’s his conversation with RMNB from Saturday, with some questions from ya boys Chuck Gormley and Katie Carrera towards the very end.

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Olie Kolzig

Kolzig smiles during his first press conference in D.C. as a coach (Photo credit: Chris Gordon)

Last Thursday, the Capitals’ new associate goaltending coach Olie Kolzig joined Elliot Segal on DC101’s Elliot In The Morning. The former fan-favorite goalie spoke favorably about his new gig and dished out plenty of interesting information in the interview, including Phillipp Grubauer’s potential landing spot next season, Braden Holtby’s tough situation, his thoughts on free-agent signee Tomas Vokoun, and much, much more. Check it out below the jump!

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