December 14, 2019

Building a lineup out of the Caps’ castaways

Mike Ribeiro addressing media during Washington Capitals Development Camp Day 6 Scrimmage at Kettler,  7/14/2012. (Cheryl Nichols/District Sports Page)

Mike Ribeiro addressing media during Washington Capitals Development Camp Day 6 Scrimmage at Kettler, 7/14/2012. (Cheryl Nichols/District Sports Page)

After seeing Filip Forsberg and Mike Ribeiro torch the Washington Capitals last Saturday, fans in the Verizon Center were left wondering, what if?

What if former general manager George McPhee had held onto the team’s top prospect in Forsberg and found a way to re-sign Ribeiro? Would those players be producing at the rate they are now for the Nashville Predators? How much better would a Caps’ team that lacks secondary scoring look with Forsberg’s 59 points and Ribeiro’s 60?

Those are the questions that will keep fans up at night. [Read more…]

Washington Capitals Trade Dennis Wideman to Calgary Flames

Dennis Wideman during warmups at Verizon Center, May 2 (Cheryl Nichols/District Sports Page)

After the press conferencintroducing Adam Oates as the new head coach of the Washington Capitals, the media were able to have a side session with GM George McPhee and the subject of today’s trade of the right of D Dennis Wideman was obviously a topic of discussion. Here are a few quotes from McPhee on the trade, how it went down, and the reason behind letting Wideman go.

On how it went down: “Calgary asked before the draft [about Wideman] if they could talk to him if we weren’t going to sign him. Based on where we’re going and wanting [Dmitry] Orlov to play more this year and having cap space to do the right things, we weren’t going to be able to sign him. We gave Calgary permission to talk to him and they were close to a deal at [last week’s NHL] draft and it would have been a fifth round pick at the draft. Then they called after the draft and said, ‘Listen, if we can get him done before July 1 [start of free agent period], we’ll give you a pick for next year’. So I said, ‘By all means.’ They were first class and it’s good for us and great for Dennis and it’s good for the Flames.”

On the player received from Calgary, Jordan Henry: “He’s going to be a free agent, but we have some interest in having him in the organization so we need to talk with him a little bit.

On why Wideman didn’t fit into the Caps plans: “It wasn’t clear but based on what we had to do in putting all the payroll models together it was going to be hard to keep him. He plays right and D and we have two other right defensemen in [Mike] Green and [John] Carlson that need new deals and need to play a lot. He did a great job for us. We traded for him to replace Mike, fill in for Mike when Mike was injured — and Mike was injured a lot the last couple of years — and he helped out. But we think Orlov is in a place now that he can play just as much.”

On if he thinks the Caps need to add a defenseman: “We think we’re in pretty good shape. Orlov can play and we like the Schilling kid. He played really well and should see games here [this season]. in my mid, we have seven with a possible eight.”

On if he’d had any negotiations with Wideman before Calgary called: “I didn’t want to negotiate with him if I wasn’t sure that we were going to be able to do it. I don’t want to mislead a player or the agent. So we told them we’re going to need som time and then when if got right down to it I didn’t think we were going to be able to do it.”

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Per team press release:

Capitals Acquire a Fifth Round Draft Pick in the 2013 NHL Draft from the Calgary Flames for Defenseman Dennis Wideman

ARLINGTON, Va. – The Washington Capitals have acquired a fifth-round draft pick in the 2013 NHL Draft and defenseman Jordan Henry from the Calgary Flames in exchange for defenseman Dennis Wideman, vice president and general manager George McPhee announced today.

Henry, 26, collected 11 points (two goals, nine assists) and 97 penalty minutes in 68 games with Abbotsford and Chicago of the American Hockey League (AHL) last season.

Wideman recorded 46 points (11 goals, 35 assists) in 82 games with Washington last season. The Kitchener, Ontario, native was named to his first NHL All-Star Game last season and has tallied 251 points (67 goals, 184 assists) in 535 career NHL games with St. Louis, Boston, Florida and Washington.

Both players are set to become unrestricted free agents on July 1.

Washington Capitals End-of-Season Roundtable, Part III: Overachiever and underachiever

Part three of our Washington Capitals end-of-season roundtable will focus on the players our panel thought were the biggest surprises and biggest disappointments this year.

Once again, our panelists are Dave Nichols (DSP Editor-in-Chief), Abram Fox (DSP Caps Page Editor), Erika Schnure (Ravings of a Rink Rebel and DSP’s Caps minor league contributor), Andrew Tomlinson (DSP Caps contributor) and respected Caps media Ted Starkey (author of Transition Game and Red Rising), Peter Hassett (Russian Machine Never Breaks) and Adam Vingan (NBCWashington.com and Kings of Leonsis). [Read more…]

Washington Capitals Wideman and Alzner at Nationals Game

It is always great to see athletes support each other in the same city where they play.

Washington Capitals Defenseman Dennis Wideman and Karl Alzner, along with their fiances, were in the President’s Club for Bryce Harper’s home debut. Not only were they at the game supporting the local team, they were rocking Curly W gear! Based on Alzner’s tweet, he was wearing a Harper jersey.

Fans exploded into cheers when their photo was on the scoreboard. The Caps host the New York Rangers on Wednesday, May 2 for game three of round two of the Stanley Cup Playoffs.

Washington Capitals Defenseman Dennis Wideman and Karl Alzner, along with their fiances, at Harper's home debut and all rocked Nats gear (Cheryl Nichols/District Sports Page)

It sounds like Karl Alzner and Nationals closer Drew Storen (currently on DL) are buddies and Alzner tweeted a photo of Storen’s glove with his twitter handle. Fantastic stuff.

 

Washington Capitals could take advantage of depth in Game Four with roster tweaks

Will Caps take advantage of Mike Knuble’s experience and size in Game Four? (Photo by Cheryl Nichols)

I’m not a hockey coach. I’m not a scout. To paraphrase Washington Capitals General Manager George McPhee, if I knew anything about the game I’d be in it.

But it seems to me that there are some peculiarities to the way the Caps’ post-season roster has been constructed, so I’d like to offer my two cents worth. With the extra day off between Games Three and Four, it’s the perfect opportunity for coach Dale Hunter to mix some things up, get a little bit of a different look, and get some fresh legs in there. If the Caps were up in the series, or even tied for that matter, you let things ride. [Read more…]

CAPS: Washington Capitals’ Better Halves Visited Children’s Nationals Medical Center

“It’s nice to come out and help them [kids] feel better, give them a little break of what is going on in their lives every day.” -Carmen Brouwer (Wife of Troy Brouwer)

The Washington Capitals’ wives and girlfriends visited Children’s National Medical Center on Monday, April 2, to make Easter and spring-themed arts and crafts with patients (and patients’ siblings) in the hospital’s atrium. This was the Capitals second trip to Children’s National Medical Center this season and their twelfth consecutive season working with Children’s. Caps players Karl Alzner, Jeff Halpern, Matt Hendricks and Mike Knuble, along with mascot Slapshot, played video games and colored with patients on Feb. 27.

Capitals Michal Neuvirth's girlfriend Monika Hybnerova, Karl Alzner's fiance Mandy Flemmer and Dennis Wideman's fiance Lindsay MacDonald making spring arts and crafts with kids at Children's Hospital April 2 (Cheryl Nichols/District Sports Page)

Caps’ better halves Ashley Beagle (Jay Beagle’s wife), Carmen Brouwer (Troy Brouwer’s wife), Mandy Flemmer (Karl Alzner’s fiance), Monika Hybnerova, (Michal Neuvirth’s girlfriend), Cynthia Lavoie (Roman Hamrlik’s wife) and Lindsay MacDonald (Dennis Wideman’s fiance) made tiaras, cards, signs, Easter baskets and other arts and crafts items with kids in the atrium at Children’s National Medical Center.

“Washington Capitals’ wives and girlfriends are here to spend time with kids making arts and crafts and just kind of take their mind off their treatments and other things that they are going through,” said Mark Miller, Communications Director for The Children’s Hospital Foundation.” Miller continued, “We’ve had doctors and nurses tell us that it actually contributes to the healing process to have some fun, do something different or see people they admire, whether its the wives and girlfriends or the players themselves. Just having someone who is important or special come to see them means a lot to them.”

Capitals better halves at Children's Hospital April 2 (Cheryl Nichols/District Sports Page)

Capitals Jay Beagle and Troy Brouwer's wives and Karl Alzner's fiance making spring arts and crafts with kids at Children's Hospital April 2 (Cheryl Nichols/District Sports Page)

Capitals Roman Hamrlik's wife Cynthia Lavoie with child at Children's Hospital April 2 (Cheryl Nichols/District Sports Page)

Capitals Dennis Wideman's fiance Lindsay MacDonald with child at Children's Hospital April 2 (Cheryl Nichols/District Sports Page)

Capitals Michal Neuvirth's girlfriend Monika Hybnerova making arts and crafts with kida at Children's Hospital April 2 (Cheryl Nichols/District Sports Page)

Capitals Jay Beagle's wife Ashley Beagle with child at Children's Hospital April 2 (Cheryl Nichols/District Sports Page)

Capitals Troy Brouwer's wife Carmen Brouwer with child at Children's Hospital April 2 (Cheryl Nichols/District Sports Page)

Capitals Roman Hamrlik's wife Cynthia Lavoie with child at Children's Hospital April 2 (Cheryl Nichols/District Sports Page)

Comcast's Jill Sorenson interviewing a child at Children's Hospital April 2 (Cheryl Nichols/District Sports Page)

Capitals Dennis Wideman's fiance Lindsay MacDonald with child at Children's Hospital April 2 (Cheryl Nichols/District Sports Page)

Children's Hospital April 2 (Cheryl Nichols/District Sports Page)

Children’s National Medical Center is the only exclusive provider of pediatric care in the metropolitan Washington area and is the only freestanding children’s hospital between Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Norfolk, and Atlanta. Serving the nation’s children for more than 140 years, Children’s National is a proven leader in the development and application of innovative new treatments for childhood illness and injury.

Cheryl Nichols is a Columnist and Photographer for District Sports Page. She is credentialed to cover the Washington Capitals and has reported on the community service and fan events for Nats News Network and Caps News Network since 2006. Cheryl is an accomplished action photographer and has been published in The Washington Post and many other local media. She was a credentialed photographer for the 2010 season covering the Washington Nationals. You can follow her on Twitter @cnichols14.

CAPS: Happy Birthday, Dennis Wideman

HAPPY 29th BIRTHDAY DENNIS WIDEMAN!

The Washington Capitals Defenseman was born on 03/20/1983 in Kitchener, ON, Canada. Dennis Wideman was the Caps’ representative in the 2012 All-Star Game.

Dennis Wideman has been very involved in the DC community this season. Wideman hosted a hockey school with Mike Knuble at Crofton Elementary School in December, participated in delivering cheer to DC families, instructed females fans how to shoot at the Hockey ‘N Heels event in January and, of course, was part of Casino Night in February.

Happy 29th Birthday to #6.

Dennis Wideman selected for his first All-Star game. (Stock Photo by Cheryl Nichols)

Hockey 'N Heels 2012 - Dennis Wideman providing shooting instruction (Photo by Cheryl Nichols)

Washington Capitals Game 70 Re-Cap: Facing Three-Goal Deficit, Caps Recover, Drop Islanders 5-4 in Shootout

In an important game in the playoff hunt, the Washington Capitals fell behind early to the New York Islanders and twice faced three-goal deficits in the second period. Facing long odds, the Caps fought back to tie the game midway through the third frame and won the game in a shootout 5-4 on the strength of a Matt Hendricks deke and poised play by Michal Neuvirth.

Alexander Ovechkin scored twice and Mike Knuble and Dmitry Orlov each scored once for Washington. Michal Neuvirth made 26 saves to earn his 11th win of the season.

After overtime failed to settle the matter, Caps head coach Dale Hunter turned to Alexander Semin, Ovechkin, and Orlov in the shootout.  Semin was poke-checked by Isles goalie Evgeni Nabokov, Ovechkin scored on the backhand, and Orlov blew his chance to win the game when he meekly lost the puck while stickhandling and failed to record a shot. Neuvirth stopped two of New York’s chances, allowing only Isles star John Tavares to beat him, and stymied defenseman Mark Streit’s attempt in the 4th round.

Enter Matt Hendricks.  Even though the fourth-line winger was last on Washington in terms of ice time, the Minnesota native’s slick hands and quiet confidence let him excel in a second role as a shootout specialist.

With the chance to win, Hendricks used his patented stutter-step backhand fake to draw Nabokov out of the net and smoothly flipped the backhand into the vacated net to secure the 5-4 win. [Read more…]

Washington Capitals Game 66 Re-Cap: Poor decision-making key in 4-3 OT loss to Canes

“The back door play was a mistake. The breakaway was a mistake. Two-on-one at the end was a mistake.” — Dale Hunter

The Washington Capitals played about as well as one could expect them to for the first 24:11 of the game, building a 2-0 lead over a last-place Carolina Hurricanes team.

The good feelings lasted only 40 seconds longer, as a defensive breakdown led to the first of three consecutive Hurricanes goals. And though the Caps rallied to tie it up with less than three minutes to go, they fell victim again to an odd-man rush, courtesy of a defenseman jumping up in the play at the wrong time. [Read more…]

GAME 64 RE-CAP: Washington Capitals play into Devils’ hands in 5-0 pasting

For the first five minutes or so Friday night, the Washington Capitals came out skating hard, throwing their bodies around and making good effort against the New Jersey Devils, losers of four straight and weary from playing the night before. But in the span of two minutes, Jason Chimera had a shot blocked on a two-on-one, Troy Brouwer was robbed by Devils’ back-up goalie Johan Hedberg on another odd-man rush, then Matt Hendricks took a penalty when he got his stick up on a check.

The Devils scored on the ensuing power play, opening the floodgates for a 5-0 white-washing of the homestanding Caps. And according to some players in the locker room, the team didn’t put up much of a fight, if any.

“I don’t think we worked very hard in the third period,” Troy Brouwer said from a somber home locker. “I thought we packed it in. We looked like a real timid, beaten down hockey team. We have to address that and make sure there is no quit in us, ever.” [Read more…]

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