We really hate to see Karl Alzner go. The Iron Man was an inspiration to the Washington Capitals and when he and John Carlson were called up from the Hershey Bears they infused the fans with new enthusiasm. They were first paired in the 2008-09 season and became a force to be reckoned with in Hershey.
Karl was drafted in the first round of 2007. Alzner was most frequently paired with Carly, except for a couple of years when the coaches split the pair up and he skated with Matt Niskanen. It was a relief to all of us to see Alzner and Carlson reunited this past season. Unfortunately, his stats have slipped of late, maybe because of the shift away from his partner John. He has said he was working to become a more offensive player; however, he only scored three goals this past season and only 13 points total, lowest of all active defensemen on the team.
There was some thought that George McPhee might bring Alzner out to Vegas to play for the Golden Knights; but we all know how that worked out. We heard early on that he was looking at other options, knowing that the Caps with their salary cap issue was not going to resign him. As one of the best top tier defenseman in the league, his options should have been wide open for him.
CSN’s Tarik El-Bashir referred to Alnzer as the “pro’s pro” and we couldn’t’ agree more. He has played through injury, for the good of the team. He has a work ethic that stands out on the team. He is a quiet solid presence. He has always been charitable to fans, running to put things in his truck so he can stand and talk and take pictures. He is just an all-round good guy and we will miss seeing him when the season begins in October.
Alzner reportedly accepted an offer from the Montreal for five years for $23,125,000 – an average of $4,625,000 per year. His previous contract was four years $11,200,000 and a yearly average of $2,800,000. Unfortunately, the Caps couldn’t offer the same to keep Karl with the team.
We wish you nothing but success Karl. Thanks for bringing it every game. Blessings on you and your beautiful family as you head off to the rest of your career.