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Clicks and Clippings: Caps, Rats and other tales

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Today the world of hockey journalists and bloggers responded to the stunning upset of the Washington Capitals by the Montreal Canadiens last night. The stories have been emotional and reveal a lot about the sport and at least for me, about human nature. While much has been written, I've selected a few I think best capture the mood of "what happened".

From inside the Capitals organization:

From the owner, Ted Leonsis: If It Doesn’t Kill You–It Makes You Stronger " Teds Take (and after the jump, TSN's Bob Mackenzie looks to read the tea leaves here)

From the captain Alex Ovechkin, post game:

From the fans and press who know this team best

 D.C. Sports Bog - Caps lose Game 7, D.C. fans suffer again  This is melodramatic. If you're not into that, best avoid. There were at least two types of people in the concourse following that thing that happened Wednesday night. One type made a beeline for the Dunkin Donuts stand..... 

You may remember this Caps blogger from our "interview exchange"  back in December. Showing herself to be a true fan of hockey and her team, this hockey mom explains what many [bandwagon] Caps fans would benefit from hearing her thoughts this morning. Musings of a hockey mom: Morning After: Game 7 Heartache Still Fresh

 D.C. Sports Bog - Brooks Laich changes a tire after Game 7   "We were getting a little spooked," she told me. "You feel pretty vulnerable right there." Finally, an SUV slowed down ahead of them and pulled over. And then Brooks Laich got out and asked if he could help.

From the outside looking in,  most writers were both mystified and gratified.

I'm sure this has already been out there, but just in case...

Was R.J. Umberger right about Capitals playing the 'wrong way'? - Puck Daddy

Washington Capitals Stanley Cup Playoff Notebook: An Abrupt End | Off Wing Opinion Despite enjoying incredible regular season success, it appears that the Washington Capitals, for whatever reason, are a team that isn't built for postseason success. - Men plan, the Hockey Gods laugh  

Bob Mackenzie used his decades of experience covering the National Hockey League to interpret what Ted Leonsis was really saying in his post at Ted's Take "Congratulations to Montreal". From Twitter this afternoon:

If you read Ted's Take, one may surmise it doesn't bode well for Bruce Boudreau, tho TL doesn't actually say that....Some of the lines that jump out at you as implied criticism of coaching:....Mtl used matchups deftly...Mtl was more patient, more committed to their schemes...lower hockey IQ, didn't adjust well on ice to new schemes...All that and "horrid special teams" usually doesn't reflect well on coach, but hey, maybe I'm wrong or reading too much into it. We'll see.


From Montreal



Montrealers believe in miracles - The Globe and Mail Following an improbable, come-from-behind, seventh-game series win against a far superior opponent, Montreal Canadiens fans couldn't help but herald a little divine intervention.

And the NHL gives us this "History will be made" spot saluting the Slovakian miracle worker:

Tonight, the Albany Rats have their back against the wall

Of course, we are delighted to remind you that our most awesome blogmeister Bob is up in Albany today and will be blogging live from the Rats' Game tonight. With the Caps' elimination, the two best Bears defenseman, Karl Alzner and John Carlson were on the the first plane our of Reagan International bound for Albany this morning, and Tim Leone in now reporting they will indeed play tonight.

Karl Alzner, John Carlson join Hershey Bears in Albany |

Rats in must-win mode  ( Yet the Rats are trying to accentuate the positives heading in Game 4 of their East Division final series tonight at 7 at Times Union Center.

Link to the Rats is forever --Times Union - Albany NY Bryan Helmer's professional hockey career has spanned the length of the Albany River Rats' franchise.

No time for Rats to show any fear -- Times Union - Albany NY On brink of elimination, team can't play scared.


This and That

This writer uses the Canes Stanley Cup win in 2006 to explain why Lavi has been so successful in Philadelphia so far: Relentless Laviolette kept pushing Flyers - The Delaware County Daily Times Laviolette ...raised the intensity level behind the bench and it reverberated through each of his players. As such, Carolina refused to lose — and it didn’t. The Hurricanes were a reflection of their coach, much in the same way the Flyers have been so far this postseason.

Phoenix Coyotes' Fans and Team know how to do it right: (Or: It's all about expectations, isn't it?)

Share photos on twitter with Twitpic

Coyotes saluting their fans after game 7 loss


Fireside Chats: Bret Hedican talks Colorado, Detroit, and what it takes to win it all - Fear The Fin I loved reading what Hedican said about former teammate in Carolina Niclas Wallin, who missed the first round against Colorado Avalanche with an injury, and what Nikki will bring to San Jose in the playoffs,

If anyone knows how to make backyard ice rinks in Cary, please share: Cullen would welcome return |  Ottawa Sun "She wants our boys to play hockey so bad," Cullen said Monday. "I have to hold her back. She likes the idea of having a rink in the backyard and she can bag skate those kids all day."

Let's hope this is a bunch of kerflooey Goaltender Save Percentage by Age - Behind The Net It would *seem* that the very best goaltenders peak at age 25.

BackTeching Techy information on the new Consol Energy center where the Penguins will play next year.

IIHF World's are set for May 7 - 23, and the rosters are beginning to get set, though I hear Slovakia is still looking for a goalie: Team Canada Worlds' Roster (Ray Whitney looking a little long-in-the-tooth?) and USA Hockey: 2010 Men's National Team adds 11 players