Hagelin Signs with Caps for Four Years

It’s official! The Capitals announced Sunday they signed Carl Hagelin to a “four-year, $11 million contract extension, with an average annual value of $2.75 million.” Hagelin made his was to the Caps via the LA Kings and was a former Pittsburgh Penguin who was a thorn in the side the the Caps in the 2016 run for the Stanley Cup. The Caps picked him up in February 2019 and have never looked back!

The Capitals GM MacLellan shared their reasons for signing the hard-hitting forward:

We are pleased to have signed Carl to a new four year contract,” said MacLellan. “Carl is a versatile player who can play on any line and is an excellent penalty killer. He is a proven winner and provides great leadership to our team.”

Hagelin is just what the Caps need to transform the team into a fast strong team:

A two-time Stanley Cup winner (2016 and 2017), Hagelin has 48 points (22g, 26a) in 128 career playoff games, which is tied with Alex Ovechkin for the second-most playoff games among the Capitals (Orpik: 156) and tied for the 14th most among active NHL forwards. Additionally, Hagelin’s 237:14 minutes of penalty kill time in the playoffs is the seventh most among active forwards.

Hagelin From LA to DC

It’s official- the LA Kings have sent forward Carl Hagelin from the Los Angeles to the Capitals for a third round pick in the 2019 NHL Draft and a conditional sixth round pick in the 2020 NHL Entry Draft, according to senior vice president and general manager Brian MacLellan.

 

Rumors began floating Wednesday night that a deal was in the works. This on the heels of the Capitals placing Devante Smith-Pelly on waivers. Earlier rumors had him going to the Sabres – one way or another Hagelin was leaving LA. He was out with an lower-body injury earlier in the season and his performance has not been the best for him so far. He brings speed to the Caps game, but it remains to be seen how his position will improve the overall scoring advantage for the Caps in the months ahead.

Further details provided by the Caps included:

Hagelin, 30, a native of Sodertalje, Sweden, recorded five points (1g, 4a) in 22 games with the Kings this season. Prior to being acquired by Los Angeles on Nov. 14, 2018, Hagelin recorded three points (1g, 2a) in 16 games with the Pittsburgh Penguins. The 5’11”, 186-pound forward’s 53.38 shot attempt percentage (245 shot attempts for, 214 against) ranked second on Los Angeles at five-on-five. Additionally, Hagelin’s

In 526 career games between the New York Rangers, Anaheim Ducks, Pittsburgh and Los Angeles, Hagelin has collected 230 points (90g, 140a). Selected with the Rangers’ sixth round pick (168

A two-time Stanley Cup winner (2016 and 2017), Hagelin has 47 points (22g, 25a) in 121 career playoff games, which is tied with Alex Ovechkin for the second-most playoff games among the Capitals (Orpik: 149) and tied for the 12

Caps Hang On to Defeat Kings 3-2

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After a complete dud Sunday night in Anaheim, the Washington Capitals bounced back in Los Angeles Monday night at Staples Center with a 3-2 win over the Kings. Thanks in part to two Alex Ovechkin office goals as well as a deflection from Brett Connolly, the Caps defended and held off a late rally from the home team.  Continue reading “Caps Hang On to Defeat Kings 3-2”

The Pregame: A Rematch in Hollywood

michael banner 2The Washington Capitals continue their season-long six-game road trip with the second half of the stretch Monday night at Staples Center where they’ll take on the Los Angles Kings. These teams actually met one week ago at Capital One Arena with the Caps coming on top 6-4. Since the win, which ironically capped off a season long homestand of six games, the Caps have gone 1-2-0 thus far on the trip.  Continue reading “The Pregame: A Rematch in Hollywood”

Caps End Homestand on High Note Before Falling in Columbus

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The Washington Capitals wrapped up their season-long six game homestand and kicked off a long road trip this week. On Saturday, the Caps overcame a 3-1 and 4-2 deficit against the Florida Panthers. They rallied to force the tie but ultimately fell short in overtime 5-4. The Capitals rebounded in the final game of the homestand on Monday night with a 6-4 win over the Los Angeles Kings before kicking off a six-game road trip in Columbus where they were blanked by the Blue Jackets 3-0.

Continue reading “Caps End Homestand on High Note Before Falling in Columbus”

Wayne Gretzky: Was he Really THAT good?

Brittney Marcum and Michael Marzzacco

We know the title to this article might throw you off a bit but let’s look at the numbers and let them speak for themselves.

First up is the number of trophies won during his playing career: four Stanley Cups, five Lady Byng Memorial Trophies (sportsmanship), nine Hart Trophies (MVP), five Leter B. Pearson trophies (most outstanding player in regular season, voted by members of the NHLPA) , 10 Art Ross Trophies (leader in points), and two Conn Smythe Trophies (playoff MVP). Doing the math, that’s a total of 36 trophies!

The stats truly tell the story as well. In his impressive NHL career, Gretzky scored 894 goals and 1,963 assists for 2,857 points. His best scoring season came in 1981-82 with the Edmonton Oilers when he was 21-years old. Gretzky scored 92 goals and registered 120 helpers for 212 points. In 1985-86, Gretzky led the league with 163 assists. Numbers like that in the NHL today are unheard of!

Gretzky led the league in goals in five of six years, including four straight seasons. He was an assist machine, leading the league in helpers for 16 seasons and in points for 11 seasons, including eight straight.

Now let’s take a look at some video of some of Gretzky’s goals.

This video comes from a playoff game between Gretzky’s Edmonton Oilers and the Calgary Flames. After some passing of the puck around a few shots traded from both sides, Gretzky was found all alone on a breakaway. Rather than going all the way to the net to beat the goaltender, Gretzky shot the puck in a familar place that we see from Alex Ovechkin from time to time. What was even more amazing was that this goal came in overtime while the Oilers were shorthanded!

This next goal comes from when Gretzky was with the Los Angeles Kings on March 23, 1994. While the Kings were on the power play attack, Gretzky created a tic-tac-toe like goal from start to finish. This was a historic goal, the 802nd of his amazing NHL career. The tally made Gretzky’s the NHL’s scoring king as he became the all-time leading goal scorer.

If you go to the Hockey Hall of Fame in Toronto there’s a great display of pucks, 802 to be exact from each of those 802 goals.

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Photo credit: Henry Lee via Pinterest

To answer the question from the headline, yes he really was THAT good. They don’t call him “The Great One” for nothing. There may not be a player like Gretzky but thankfully here in Washington we’ve got someone pretty close. The one we like to call “The Great Eight”, Alex Ovechkin. Gretzky himself has been impressed by the prolific scoring that Ovechkin has provided to the Capitals. While Gretzky was coaching the Phoenix Coyotes during Ovechkin’s rookie year, Ovechkin scored this awesome goal. He got the puck, went around the defender on his back and still managed to get the puck past Coyotes goaltender Brian Boucher.

Now that Ovechkin has won a Stanley Cup and scored over 600 goals, there may be a possibilty he can catch Gretzky, or at least come close. Every goal from here on out brings him closer but it was Gretzky who laid the foundation and made the sport of hockey what it is today.

Latta Off to KHL

Former Capitals player Michael Latta announced via twitter that he will be playing for the Kunlun Red Stars in the KHL this season.

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Latts was released by the Capitals in 2016 and signed with the LA Kings. He was ultimately sent down to their AHL affiliate and has played the last several seasons in the AHL. Most recently he played for the New Jersey Devils AHL affiliate, the Binghamton Devils. He did not receive an offer from an NHL team this offseason.

The Red Stars are a Chinese hockey team which became part of the KHL in 2016. The team is located in Beijing, China. Latta has signed a one-year contract with the team.

Tomas Kundratek, formerly of the Hershey Bears and Capitals is also on the roster so at least Michael will have a friendly face meeting him there. The roster shows six Canadian (including Latta), two Americans, and diverse international representation of players.

Latta told his hometown press he was ready for a change: I’m not going to miss the AHL at all. I was kind of bored by the end of it, playing three years in Washington [for the NHL’s Capitals] and with being sent down, I didn’t get a chance to get back to the NHL.” See the full article below:

LA Kings are Ready for the Capitals

The Washington Capitals had their pucks handed back to them Monday night in Anaheim. Goalie John Gibson walked away with a shutout while Braden Holtby was pulled after the first period and Philipp Grubauer stepped in, but to no avail. The Caps fell 4-0 to the Ducks.

Wednesday night the Caps will travel up the road to the Staple Center, the home of LA Kings, who sit in fourth place in the Pacific Division and are currently in a wild card position. The Kings are feeling pretty good after a nice win (5-2) over the Blue Jackets and yet still smarting a bit from a 5-3 loss to the Blackhawks on 3 March. They need this win against Washington.

The Kings and Caps have played 16 games against each other since 2005. The Kings have won 11 of those match ups. Of those 16 games, the Caps have won only one game in LA. Let’s face it, the Caps have a hard time on these Western Conference trips. Is it a different style of play? Is it a time change? Is it is mindset?

 A 2017/11/30 Los Angeles Kings   5  -  Washington Capitals   2      W 
 H 2017/03/11 Los Angeles Kings   4  -  Washington Capitals   2      W 
 A 2017/02/05 Los Angeles Kings   0  -  Washington Capitals   5      L 
 H 2016/03/09 Los Angeles Kings   4  -  Washington Capitals   3 (OT) W 
 A 2016/02/16 Los Angeles Kings   1  -  Washington Capitals   3      L 
 H 2015/02/14 Los Angeles Kings   3  -  Washington Capitals   1      W 
 A 2015/02/03 Los Angeles Kings   0  -  Washington Capitals   4      L 
 A 2014/03/25 Los Angeles Kings   5  -  Washington Capitals   4 (SO) W 
 H 2014/03/20 Los Angeles Kings   2  -  Washington Capitals   1 (SO) W 
 H 2012/01/09 Los Angeles Kings   5  -  Washington Capitals   2      W 
 A 2011/02/12 Los Angeles Kings   4  -  Washington Capitals   1      W 
 H 2010/01/02 Los Angeles Kings   2  -  Washington Capitals   1      W 
 A 2009/02/05 Los Angeles Kings   5  -  Washington Capitals   4      W 
 H 2008/11/20 Los Angeles Kings   5  -  Washington Capitals   2      W 
 A 2007/02/08 Los Angeles Kings   3  -  Washington Capitals   4 (OT) L 
 H 2005/12/14 Los Angeles Kings   2  -  Washington Capitals   3      L

It won’t be easy for either team. The Kings, like the Caps, have been spending more time in the sin bin then they would like. Top guys like Drew Dougherty need to set the tone for the team. The Caps have had issues with defenseman Brooks Orpik, especially taking some late game penalties. The Kings have an 83.4 percent penalty kill average and ranks second it the league–the Caps not so much.

The Caps will need to keep a watch on Jeff Carter – not to mention Tanner Pearson and Tyler Toffoli who have been playing a strong game of late. Oh and lets not forget Kopitar – our favorite to watch. They of course have to deal with the power year Alex Ovechkin is having. Ovi leads the team and the league in goals at 40. He is also on the prowl to notch two more goals for 600. Kuznetsov leads in assists and lets not forget defenseman John Carlson who has more time on ice then anybody and keeps bringing it night after night.

We don’t know for sure who will be in the net for either team. Could be Holtby but we have a sense coach will go with Grubauer given how quick he was to pull Holtz on Monday. And speaking of Quick, if he is in the net he is sure to be a formidable presence in the net.

LA Insider Jon Rosen talked with Coach Stevens about the pending match and coach indicated that the Caps could be fired up after the big loss in Anaheim–something about the Caps forecheck. The Capitals want to hang onto the top spot while the Kings want to move up from wild card and into a sure spot in time for the playoffs. Any way you look at it, this is going to be a great game for DC fans to stay up late and watch.

Update: Brooks Laich Signs One-Year with LA Kings

One of Washington Capitals favorite former players is getting a chance to play in the NHL again, according to reports from the LA Kings. Now with Jeff Carter out for a long while with a lower-body injury; the door is open for someone to step in. Laich has been practicing with the Kings, albeit without a contract, waiting his time out.

Brooks signed a one year two-way contract on Thursday afternoon, according to CBS Sports. Laich’s contract will have an Annual Average Value (AAV) of $650,000.

Brooks, who the Caps sent off to Toronto after the 2015/16 season is not officially part of the roster. This summer, following his marriage to Julianne Hough, he was given a player tryout (PTO) with the Kings. The tryout expired 1 October with no offer of a contract.

We expect he will be in the number 25 jersey, as he did in the preseason.


He has been keeping busy with projects and  fitness routines.

It might only be a short-term opportunity for Laich. We’re happy for him to be back in the game!!!

Brooks Laich Might Skate for LA Kings Yet

Washington Capitals favorite tire changer might get a chance to play in the NHL again, according to reports around the organization.

Brooks, who the Caps sent off to Toronto after the 2015/16 season is not officially part of the roster. This summer, following his marriage to Julianne Hough, he was given a player tryout (PTO) with the Kings. The tryout expired 1 October with no offer of a contract.

Now with Jeff Carter out with a lower-body injury- the door is open for someone to step in. Laich has been practicing with the Kings albeit without a contract, waiting his time out.

If it works out, it might only be a short-term opening. But who knows. We’re happy for him to be back in the game!!!