Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Scott Burnside of ESPN,
They came into the league out of the ashes of a soul-sucking lockout that scuttled an entire season and got the kind of fanfare that precedes players maybe once in a generation.
They were asked to do nothing less than restore hope and guide the NHL into a new future, a new golden age of hockey.
So on many levels, it's hard to argue that Sidney Crosby and Alex Ovechkin haven't delivered on those demands in spades, time and time again.
"They're still the face of the league. For sure they are," said one longtime NHL player who has worked at a number of positions with a number of teams around the league.
Between them, Crosby and Ovechkin have collected five Hart Trophies and six Ted Lindsay Awards as the players' MVP in the past eight seasons. And then there's Crosby's Stanley Cup ring and two Olympic gold medals.
"That's not going away," the source said of the two players' accomplishments, regardless of whatever issues assail their respective franchises.
from Alex Prewitt of Capitals Insider,
“My expectation is that because this is a world-class organization with great talent, that if we don’t make the playoffs, we’ll all be disappointed,” Leonsis said. “As I mentioned before, I can’t name a single team that’s won the Stanley Cup without making the playoffs.”
Stanley Cup notwithstanding, the new-look Capitals have engendered a wide range of preseason predictions from reporters — three of eight Sports Illustrated writers slotted Washington into the playoffs, for instance – and Leonsis said that might be such a bad thing for a new regime.
“I read all the hockey communiques, all the blogs, all the online stuff,” he said. “Not many people are even picking us to make the playoffs again. I’m not sure whether the players or coaching staff read that. I know some of our fans do. I have.
“Yeah, I think that could be positive. There aren’t a lot of expectations for us. Maybe there will be a different kind of pressure on the team, which is to prove experts wrong. But I think they’re in this for the right reason. They think they have a good team. They think we have good personnel and we haven’t achieved our goals. The first goal we have to reestablish is we have to make the playoffs.”
“I think we understand each other better.
“I think there was a little uneasiness coming in, but I think we’ve talked through everything. I don’t think there’s anything we haven’t really discussed in terms of what we need to do and why.
“We’re just starting the journey. We’re going to have some hard times; we’re going to have some good times. That’s the NHL season. It’s no different than a family. We’re starting to create a little bit of a family with our group and they’re all accountable to each other.
“Just like any family you’re not always going to be on the same page with your brothers and sisters. You still love them, but you may not agree with them all the time. We’ll have a couple of those days, but other than that we’ve made great strides.
“We have lots of work to do this year to get to where we want to be, but the foundation is there and that’s the most important thing. If you don’t have a foundation it will crumble, so we’ve been working hard on the foundation.”
-Barry Trotz, head coach of the Washington Capitals. More from Trotz by Chuck Gormley of CSNWashington.
from chuck Gormley of CSNWashington,
Last week the Capitals rekindled an old tradition by roping off the logo on the carpeted floor of their Verizon Center locker room. Barry Trotz said the logo should be respected and considered sacred.
When the Capitals opened their Kettler Capitals Iceplex locker room to reporters over the weekend, a new message adorned the doorway: To Whom Much Is Given Much Is Expected.
The Red Wings have the same message in their locker room at Joe Louis Arena in Detroit and other NHL locker rooms employ other inspirational sayings.
In Toronto, the locker room slogan reads, “The price of success is hard work.” In Montreal, it’s “To you from failing hands we throw the torch. Be yours to hold it high.” In San Jose, it’s “Hard work beats talent when talent doesn't work hard."
But there is something else new about the Caps’ locker room, thanks to the busy hands of Trotz.
01:55 MTL Jarred Tinordi served by Jiri Sekac Elbowing (maj) - 5 min against Nate Schmidt
01:55 MTL Jarred Tinordi Fighting (maj) - 5 min against Chris Brown
01:55 WSH Chris Brown served by Nathan Walker Instigator - 2 min against Jarred Tinordi
01:55 WSH Chris Brown Fighting (maj) - 5 min against Jarred Tinordi
01:55 MTL Jarred Tinordi Game misconduct - 10 min
01:55 WSH Chris Brown Misconduct (10 min) - 10 min
ARLINGTON, Va. – The Washington Capitals unveiled their uniform for the 2015 Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic® today at Nationals Park. Modeled by captain Alex Ovechkin, alternate captain Nicklas Backstrom and goaltender Braden Holtby, the uniform system is a tribute to the franchise’s past and the history of Washington professional hockey.
“We wanted to create a uniform that not only celebrates the history of the Capitals but also gives the team a unique, new look,” said Capitals president Dick Patrick. “We feel our fans will really embrace this uniform.”
NEW YORK, NY (September 23, 2014) – Premium TV network EPIX and the National Hockey League (NHL®) announced today that they have formed a partnership to produce and distribute a two-part original series, debuting on EPIX in December 2014, that will bring hockey fans onto the ice and behind-the-scenes with the Chicago Blackhawks and Washington Capitals as they prepare to compete in the 2015 Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic®, and the Los Angeles Kings and San Jose Sharks on their road to the 2015 Coors Light NHL Stadium Series™.
Produced by 52-time Emmy award winner Ross Greenburg, the series will offer viewers an exclusive look inside the world of the NHL, with strategically placed cameras and microphones providing an all-access pass to players’ homes, locker rooms, training rooms, and the arena.
Washington Capitals to Unveil NHL Winter Classic Uniforms
NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman; NHL Chief Operating Officer John Collins; NHLPA Executive Director Don Fehr; Washington, D.C., Mayor Vincent C. Gray; Washington Capitals Chairman & Owner Ted Leonsis; Washington Capitals President Dick Patrick; Washington Capitals Senior Vice President and General Manager Brian MacLellan; Chicago Blackhawks President & CEO John McDonough; Chicago Blackhawks Executive Vice President Jay Blunk; Chicago Blackhawks Vice President & General Manager Stan Bowman; Chicago Blackhawks Vice President, Hockey Operations Al MacIsaac; Washington Capitals Captain Alex Ovechkin, Center Nicklas Backstrom and Goaltender Braden Holtby; Washington Nationals Vice Chair & Principal Owner Mark Lerner; Bridgestone Vice President of Sports & Events Phil Pacsi; EPIX President & CEO Mark Greenberg
You can watch the special event below which is scheduled to begin at 12:00pm ET.
from the CP at TSN,
Trotz is the new coach of the Washington Capitals, which means first and foremost he is the coach of the immensely talented three-time league MVP whose individual accolades have yet to translate into substantial playoff success. Things will be plenty different for everyone when training camp opens Friday, but what arguably matters most is how No. 8 takes to yet another attempt to change the way he plays.
"Physically, he's a strong guy," Trotz said in an interview with The Associated Press. "But there's areas in his game he needs to grow in, and that's really my job, to help him grow his game."
Trotz is Washington's fifth coach since Ovechkin entered the league in 2005, but he's the first who has been a head coach elsewhere in the NHL. He led the Nashville Predators from inception to this year, with 1,246 regular season and playoff games under his belt. He has an established idea how he wants to run a team -- he's already rejigged the coaches' meeting room with more cutting-edge technology and made it more of a "war room." He has so much cache that he was able to give owner Ted Leonsis a frank assessment of the Capitals' deficiencies while interviewing for the job.
"It's the culture," Trotz said. "I just think a little bit of the inmates were running the asylum, that's No. 1. I think there's good talent, and I felt it needed some order."
“Everybody thinks I’m going to turn him into a Selke-winner. People say he had a rotten year last year, but he still scored eight more goals than the nearest guy in the Rocket Richard race. I don’t want to disrespect his gift – the gift of scoring goals, which is one of the hardest things to do.
“I’m not going to get him to be that super-detailed Doug Jarvis type. I just need him to work defensively and have some pride in getting the puck back. That’s the way I’ve talked to him. Get the puck and score, but if we don’t have the puck, I want a plan to get it back quickly so we can go score again.”
-Barry Trotz, head coach of the Washington Capitals on Alex Ovechkin. More from Trotz by Eric Duhatschek of the Globe and Mail.
About Kukla's Korner Hockey
Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.
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