The Washington Capitals came into this weekend hoping to continue a two game winning streak. Instead, they are leaving this weekend with a two game losing streak in which they have looked horrible. I hoped that the Capitals could take advantage of a young, inexperienced Sabres team tonight, but sadly that was not the case. The Buffalo Sabres played with a lot of energy, while the Capitals played with absolutely none. It was very hard and brutal to watch.
The Capitals ended the first period in a 2-0 hole. 6:39 into the second period, Jason Chimera gave this team some hope with an awesome penalty shot goal. That was his team-leading 9th goal of the year. However, that hope turned into despair just 27 seconds later, as the Sabres scored again to make it 3-1. After that, the Capitals played with absolutely no energy.
Judging by comments by the Capitals recently, including Bruce Boudreau himself, I think Boudreau might be on the way out. Not sure when it’s going to happen, but everyone has stopped defending Boudreau. So who will the Capitals hire if they fire Bruce Boudreau? Well, here are their three most likely options. I’ve heard all three names be tossed around, and I’d be happy with any of the three. I think they’d each bring something unique to the team:
- Alan May- Doesn’t have any previous coaching experience, but if you listen to him, he is so spot-on with his commentary. This man lives, eats, breathes, and sleeps hockey. He’s also very highly regarded, and the players definitely respect him. He’s a former player, so I think he would be able to relate to the players and know how to get them motivated and prepared.
- Mark French- This is my personal choice. I’ve been extremely impressed with the job he has done with the Hershey Bears. He preaches a two-way approach to hockey, and he knows how to put his players in positions where they can succeed. As the coach of the Hershey Bears, he also knows most of the Capitals players because he has coached a good number of them at some point. Even when the Bears have struggled, they have shown heart.
- Dale Hunter- Dale Hunter is the popular choice for many Capitals fans, as he is one of the most beloved Capitals players of all-time. The problem with hiring Dale would be that he is already the head coach for another hockey team. He’s a very loyal person, so I don’t think he would quit on his team during the season. Also, I think he would want to think it over before accepting. He would be a great pick for the next Capitals coach though. Knows the game of hockey, played it for so many years, and he knows how to motivate. One questionable thing about him is that his teams have the tendency to commit a lot of penalties. I wouldn’t be concerned if Hunter wasn’t
As much as I would love to have Dale Hunter as the next head coach, I don’t think that’s happening. Mark French knows the organization, and he has done an incredible job with the Bears. I think he’s the right choice. As far as who would replace French as the head coach of the Bears, I would go with Alan May. As much as I respect him, he has no previous coaching experience. I think he’d make a good coach, but at the same time, everyone thought the same thing about Wayne Gretzky. Turns out he was a legendary player, but not a good coach. If May can prove himself, he’ll get a shot somewhere as an NHL head coach, whether it’s in Washington or somewhere else. Troy Mann (currently the assistant coach in Hershey) would also be a logical choice. French is quite fond of Mann, so I think that will factor into the decision.
- Roman Hamrlik’s season-long slump continues. He has been on the ice for 30 of the Capitals 69 goals against. He had a -3 +/- rating tonight.
- I think all of Dennis Wideman’s time on ice is really affecting his game. He’s looked fatigued recently. He had a -3 +/- rating tonight.
- Alex Ovechkin had a -4 +/- rating tonight, and really looked lost defensively. This is never good to see from your captain.
- Karl Alzner was the only Capitals defenseman to not have a negative +/- rating for tonight. His was dead even.