It's another end of the week, which brings about the Friday Five-- where I just look at some storylines and comment on it. It's simple, that much I know.
1. The Caps have dropped four in a row, when does the panic set in??
You can almost see that the wheels on the bandwagon are getting loose-- but if it hasn't set in yet for the team, it should soon. You almost have to think they've bought into their own hype from last year and the pre-season predictions. That said, it's not the Caps are playing horrific, but it seems when they do slide, it gets magnified more than some other teams out there. I think it's more alarming that Alex Ovechkin isn't shooting enough (for his standards), even though he's on pace for a record number of points.
2. What, if anything, can stop the slide and actually get them to the dominant team everyone thought they'd be??
I still say that the platoon goaltending isn't going to last through the entire year and I think that the inexperience of both Semyon Varlamov and Michal Neuvirth at the NHL level will be the end of them. That's an opinion that's not popular amongst Caps fans, but it's something that seems to plague the Caps fateful. They like their home-grown talent and their folk-hero players-- but sadly, that will most likely lead to disappointment when it matters most. So, my guess is an experienced goalie will help by the deadline-- but it could happen sooner if the struggles continue.
3. IIHF is re-starting the Champions' League for the 2011-12 season. Is it really a Champions' League if there's no Stanley Cup or even Calder Cup representative??
It's a bit of a misnomer to promote a Champions' League and not have a Stanley Cup winner there, but it's something where the MLS isn't there for the European Soccer Champions' League. This is something that should only be European only because their schedules are more lenient and allows them to schedule other games outside of their league games. It'd be nice for there to be a North America representation, but it's definitely less than necessary to have them there. Let the Cup champs and Champions' League winner face-off in the Victoria Cup in September to really show themselves off.
4. Hate to make it Caps-sentric, but what can we expect out of both teams for the Winter Classic alumni game??
For the Caps, we already know that Peter Bondra will be playing, but no one else. I'd love to see Scott Stevens, Rod Langway, Sylvain Cote, Al Iafrate, and Calle Johansson on the blue line. Michal Pivonka, Mike Gartner, Bengt Gustafsson, Dale Hunter, and (sadly) Craig Laughlin up front. If they can get Don Beaupre and/or Jim Carey in net (though Olie Kolzig will make the trip over if need be), that'd be amazing.
The Penguins already announced that Mario Lemieux, Ron Francis, Paul Coffey, and newly retired Bill Guerin will be on the roster. You can bet that Ulf Samuelsson will probably make the trip over and you can bet Bryan Trottier and maybe even Kevin Stevens will be on the list. Tom Barrasso will probably be in net, since I can't think of anyone outside of Ken Wregget would be worthy enough.
The game will have the Caps alumni go up quick then lose late-- as is the story for every Caps/Pens series. As a long suffering Caps fan, I know how this story goes.
5. With waffles being thrown in Toronto, what else could we seen thrown in the future at other venue??
We've seen waffles, snakes, hard-helmets, and even sextoys-- but I don't know what else that could be thrown that could cause a ruckus. You could see a lot of recycled things being thrown out during Calgary Flames games, while I definitely await the Yarmulke trick happening in Miami-- even though Hanukkahs is over. With Operation Curly Fries, Red Wings fans could throw fries-- but they already have the octopus, so I don't think you could do both....unless it's octopus filled with curly fries; which would be amazing. Maybe fried calamari for the combination.
You guys can get on this, too-- if you don't like what I've got, suggest your own. Email me Scotty.Wazz@Gmail.com and submit something you'd like me to talk about and get an opinion. If not, well-- you enjoy these ramblings of not your own.