At Kettler the Day After

You can cross one name off your list of free agent concerns for the Capitals this offseason — Head Coach Bruce Boudreau. Speaking with reporters at Kettler-Capitals Iceplex just moments after wrapping up a season-concluding meeting with the team this afternoon, the coach confirmed that he’d had discussions with General Manager George McPhee about a new deal. He didn’t want to speak in specifics, and he wanted to defer to the GM for a more formal acknowledgment, but he did say, “I’m gonna be coaching the Caps a little while.” He was smiling.
The coach also confirmed that Alexander Ovechkin played hurt in his first playoff series. He suggested that some struggles the left winger experienced at times in the series were related to the injury. After the game last night Ovechkin did tell Sovetsky Sport’s Dmitry Chesnokov that he had played games 6 and 7 on painkillers. When Chesnokov pressed him for more details about the injury, AO replied, “I cannot tell you that.”
The coach remains in awe of his star. Alluding to Ovechkin’s extended stay in D.C. that was secured earlier this season, he said, “Thirteen years for that guy — maybe it should be 18!”
Nicklas Backstrom, it was announced while we were gathered at Kettler, has been named a finalist for the Calder Trophy.
The coach is going up to Hershey tonight to take in game 4 of the Bears’ opening series with Wilkes Barre-Scranton. The Caps’ affiliate is in a 3-0 hole in that one. When asked how he thought he’d spend his first offseason as an NHL coach Boudreau said that he didn’t quite know but added, “This is the environment I feel comfortable in.”
Both the coach and the superstar were effusive in their praise for Washington’s hockey fans. Ovechkin wants the city’s fans to pick up next season where they left off this. “I hope the fans support us the same way [next year]. The atmosphere was unbelievable.”
Boudreau pointed to a pronounced difference in the arena from fall to spring. “I’ve really seen it pick up since I came here,” he said. “[There were] an amazing amount of jerseys in the crowd last night.”
Matt Cooke, on Tom Poti’s overtime tripping call: “You’d like to see them call something that wasn’t a marginal call, something that takes away a scoring chance.”
Lastly, the coach acknowledged that he’d had a private and very personal conversation with Olie Kolzig. He didn’t offer much about its substance, but he did say, “[Kolzig’s] one of the classiest men I’ve ever met in this game.”
The goaltender’s Kettler locker, for what it’s worth, still had his nameplate in place.

This entry was posted in Alexander Ovechkin, Kettler Capitals Iceplex, Matt Cooke, Nicklas Backstrom, Olaf Kolzig, Tom Poti, Washington Capitals. Bookmark the permalink.

15 Responses to At Kettler the Day After

  1. SovSport says:

    A season to remember with more to come. I overheard Mike Wise speaking with Mr. Leonsis next to the locker room last night. Mr. Leonsis said that he had not had a chance to speak with the General Manager about Fedorov’s future. He said they may talk a month before the free agency opens. Wouldn’t it be nice, however, to have Fedorov for at least some time? Especially after such an unforgetable impact he had on the team during this amazing run.

  2. Mark says:

    That’s good news for the Caps, Boudreau did a fantastic job this year and Washington should be ready to go a little deeper in the playoffs next year. Not to mention, Washington will be a much more attractive destination for free agents this summer.

  3. usiel says:

    IMO this is going to be a really busy off season for the Capitals and conversely for the die hard 24-7 caps fans. There are a ton of potential personnel moves that could happen…

  4. DC Mike says:

    Time to get to work on the signings.
    Green, Feds, Huet, etc. Need to make sure we have the right pieces in place. And if Pothier’s injury is as permanent as it sounds (very sad, all the best to him, here’s hoping there’s a chance for a comeback), need to look at defensive options as well. I continue to believe that this team needs a big blue-liner.
    The day after is never pretty, unless you are the one team that wins. But I do think that what was built between the Caps and the city was pretty special, and that it won’t go away overnight.

  5. Bucky Katt says:

    I hope they can work a deal with Fedorov.
    But if he decides to you think he would consider staying on the Caps staff in a role similiar to Calle J’s?

  6. ThunderWeenie says:

    Thanks for this, guys. I love the insights.
    Interesting that Ovechkin was playing hurt. Not surprising, giving the way the lad plays, bashing into everything that moves. Every team has its share of walking wounded in the playoffs (I think my Senators could have held a team meeting at Ottawa Civic Hospital!), but don’t forget–Washington made to overtime of game 7 with one of its key players hurt.
    I will echo the comments I made on one of the other articles–the Caps and their fans should hold their heads high today.

  7. SpartyCuse says:

    I expect the Caps to resign Huet and Fedorov. Im guessing that Matt Cooke will not be brought back, especially with Clark and Nylander needing roster spots next year (assuming they are healthy).
    Its a safe guess that Karl Alzner will be with the Caps next year, likely taking the #6 d spot from Eminger/Erskine.
    Its very sweet thinking that a resigned Fedorov, teamed with Backstrom and Nylander would be a hell of 1-2-3 set of centers. Heck, a third line with Clark-Fedorov-Laich could do a lot of damage.
    And Im guessing that Olie is done, not just with the Caps, but in the NHL. I applaud for all he has done, and cant wait see his #37 raised to the rafters.

  8. Juan-John says:

    Ovie was hurt and STILL managed three goals in the last two games?!?
    Wow, this kid has heart. Somebody sign him up to a long-term contract! 😛

  9. Juan-John says:

    I don’t suppose tonight’s Bears game is being televised anywhere…?

  10. MulletMan says:

    After all the dust has settled, I must say that I have been viewing these playoffs as a learning experience. It still hurts today, but I must admit that these growing pains are a lot easier to take then last years finish.
    Extra props go to AO for learning to play injured (not that it’s always a good thing) but it’s a well known fact that players learn to adapt and play with injuries during the playoffs. I am hoping that it is nothing too serious, and that he may be allowed to attend worlds.

  11. Focality says:

    Great season. Despite the awful loss last night, I’m hopeful for this team’s future. They played their hearts out.
    Agreed on the need to sign some key players. These guys are on fire! Who’d a thunk Semin had it in him? Emminger? Wow.
    Would be nice to see the Caps organization retire Bondra’s and Kolzig’s (if he’s retiring) numbers next season.

  12. Megan says:

    Tonight’s Bears playoff game will be on the B2 networks like always.

  13. JR says:

    Can’t say I’m in love with Ovie playing in the WC, but I guess nobody ever gets hurt there, right? He may as well enjoy them, he won’t be attending for the next 20 years. 🙂

  14. FrankM73 says:

    @ SpartyCuse:
    “Its a safe guess that Karl Alzner will be with the Caps next year, likely taking the #6 d spot from Eminger/Erskine.”
    I disagree totally with this statement! As good as Alzner is, you don’t throw him directly into the fire when you already have 8 decent D on the depth chart. Let Alzner simmer in the A and learn NA Pro hockey…
    Eminger will be back per GMGM and Eminger… and I’d expect he’ll do just fine.
    Erskine will also be back (since he’s under contract per one of the NHL cap sites). Milking one more year out of him won’t be bad…

  15. margaret says:

    ovie did seem a bit off, he grimaced a bunch during the game. greenie looked like he was favoring one side a lot, he didnt really click or get any good shots, etc.
    I’m so sad about olie! he could almost make it to 20 years, they should totally retire 37 when he retires because he’s practically gave the team all their successes :/
    I would be pretty suprised if b?ɬ§ckstr?ɬ?m didnt get ROY, he’s gotten a goal in all the playoff games, and he’s pretty much AMAZING he has to get it!!

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