Richard Wolowicz

The Capitals During the Lockout

The lockout - and the Caps' locker room - gets a little more interesting, as Troy Brouwer and Karl Alzner weigh in on recent comments by the Czech contingent.

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20 Total Updates since October 2, 2012
  • Important 11
  • Updates 7
  • Articles 13
  • All Updates 20

Backstrom: "2013 Couldn't Have Started Any Better"

Nicklas Backstrom is beaming with optimism as the lockout ends and he leaves Moscow for Washington


Wojtek Wolski Takes Polish Hockey Old-School

The Washington Capitals forward brought some NHL-style showmanship to the capital of Poland. Oh, and don't try to run his goalie. Ever.


Brouwer: "Tough to Want to Back" Hamrlik, Neuvirth

The lockout - and the Caps' locker room - gets a little more interesting, as Troy Brouwer and Karl Alzner weigh in on recent comments by the Czech contingent.


Neuvirth: Lockout "About Several Superstars"

The Caps netminder expressly comes to the defense of one teammate... while implicitly throwing another under the bus.


Hamrlik: "Disgusted"

The veteran Caps blueliner has had enough with the lockout... and his union's leadership


Reports: Brooks Laich Injured

It seems the Kloten Flyers will have to make do without their first line center for an unknown amount of time.


Jason Chimera Signs with HC Chomutov

The speedy winger becomes the latest Cap to head overseas to find work during the lockout


Marcus Johansson Signs with BIK Karlskoga

Marcus Johansson has signed with BIK Karlskoga of second-tier Swedish league HockeyAllsvenskan


Backstrom to Second-Choice Dynamo Not a Done Deal?

Nicklas Backstrom has signed with the KHL's Dynamo Moscow, reuniting him with Alex Ovechkin for the duration of the lockout... or has he?

Per Aftonbladet's Sportbladet:

Nicklas Bäckström hasn't signed the contract with Dynamo Moscow yet. One of the things that still remains to be negotiated is the length of the contract. Bäckström wants an opportunity to break the contract with Dynamo if the lockout lasts all season. That is something the KHL club is not particularly interested in according to Sportbladet’s sources. Nicklas Bäckström has been very clear all along that he wants to play with Brynäs, if they let him, but so far they are turning him down.

"I don’t comment on ongoing negotiations, but I can confirm that all the details are not yet finalized." says, Gunnar Svensson, Nicklas Bäckström’s Swedish agent, to Sportbladet.

It's unlikely that anything here will cause a deal to fall through at this point, but stranger things have happened. And, to clarify, it sounds as if Dynamo would be fine with Backstrom leaving in the event that the NHL lockout ends, but wouldn't want to give him an out should an opportunity with another non-NHL club become available... which brings us to the next point, that bit about his former Swedish club, Brynäs, being Backstrom's first choice, which is something Backstrom himself told Expressen (see also here), as he spoke of his decision to head to Moscow:

"Brynäs was my first choice so of course I’m disappointed, but it is what it is. I just couldn't sit around and wait for them indefinitely, this was my only alternative. I’m really looking forward to playing some hockey again. I’m not sure when I will play my first game for Dynamo Moscow, it depends on how I feel when I get over there.

"It’s always fun to have another Swede on the team. I know Richard Gynge from when we both played together with Brynäs. He is a good guy.

"I’m really looking forward to finally play some games. I have been on ice over here in the States, but I probably am not in real game shape just yet. "

Brynäs is in a bit of a spot here, given the Swedish Elite League's lack of desire to make use potentially short-term NHL labor, something the club apparently supports and intends to honor. Back to Sportbladet:

"Of course it's a very strange feeling. It’s been an incredibly tough decision to say no thanks to Nicklas. But there are two dimensions to this: Nicklas - the man, is an incredible person and a true ambassador for Brynäs. But at the same time, we made a decision early on that we that we think will be the best for us in the long run and then you have to stay by that decision," says club director Hans-Göran Karlsson.

According to Sportbladet’s calculations Nicklas Bäckström insurance would cost Brynäs around 600,000 kronor per month. And they have financial means to afford to pay his insurance.

"Yes, we have the economy to bring him home, the fact that we do have the money makes this decision extra tough for us."

So there you have it - two Leagues (the NHL and SEL) now have said "No" to the Caps' top pivot, so he's off to Moscow to pair up with his pal Ovi... assuming the i's get dotted and t's get crossed. As with seemingly everything related to this lockout, it's clear as mud.

(H/t to Malin on the translations - super work, as always.)


Backstrom Signs with Dynamo Moscow

Per via @Rabiesmalin and through Google Translate:

Washington's star forward Nicklas Backstrom choose to play in the KHL and Dynamo Moscow during NHL conflict.

"I want to play hockey and this will be a fun challenge," says Backstrom to SVT sport. It was teammate Alexander Ovechkin who persuaded Backstrom choosing Dynamo.

There may be a short-term stay in the Russian capital. The parties shall negotiate in the NHL tonight Swedish time. The employer has fallen somewhat with the hope to get the game on November 2. Players union does not seem impressed by the new bid.

Update: Katie Carrera confirms that Backstrom has indeed signed with Dynamo.


Oates Named "Co-Coach" of Hershey

In a somewhat interesting move, the Capitals have announced that head coach Adam Oates will serve as "co-coach" of the Hershey Bears for the duration of the NHL lockout. Per Vogs:

With the NHL’s lockout ongoing, Caps general manager George McPhee decided that it would be best for his coaches and for the organization’s players in Hershey and Reading to benefit from the addition coaching and instruction that can be provided by the Washington staff.

For the time being, Oates and French will serve as co-coaches of the Bears.

"Mark French and Adam Oates will be co-coaches and they will work together and both will be very involved with the day-to-day [operations] of the team," says McPhee.

Vogs has much more on the move, so be sure to click through, but if you were hoping for signs that the lockout might come to a quick conclusion... this ain't one.

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