Friday, September 15, 2006

Burnside LOVES the Caps!

I'm not really sure why I do this to myself everytime, but this evening I felt the need to check out's NHL "coverage". And there he was - our best buddy, Scott Burnside, with his Eastern Conference preview. I started reading despite the little voice in my head screaming at me not to do it, knowing it would only make me angry. The hopeless optimist in me (the entire reason I'm a Caps fan in the first place) silenced it and made me read on. It started out well:

"We spent a lot of time beating up on the Capitals before the start of last season, and we're honestly very sorry about that."

. That's awfully nice, Scott, thanks! But then, of course, he kept going:

"And it would have been nice had owner Ted Leonsis given GM George McPhee something to work with this season because this Caps team is one of the hardest-working teams in the NHL. But sadly, the immediate future looks as bleak as it did a season ago."

Did you catch the compliment hidden in there? Blink and you'll miss it. Anyway, I think George made some smart moves in the offseason. Maybe not big, flashy signings but signings that will fit into what we already had. Could we still pick up some guys? Sure - season hasn't started yet, right?

But why let logic get in the way...and so we continue:

"There's Alexander Ovechkin, who scored 49 more points than the second-leading scorer on the team, and netminder Olaf Kolzig, who curiously re-signed with the Caps instead of becoming a free agent. And that's pretty much it. Alexander Semin will join the Caps after essentially being AWOL the past two seasons. But coach Glen Hanlon still has fewer tools to work with than any other coach in the NHL."

Um...yeah. No comment.

The big finish - come on, Scott, be a good pundit and ask those questions that aren't really questions:

"Questions: Can the enigmatic Semin make an impact? Is there a drop-off for effervescent Ovechkin in his sophomore year? Will anyone bother to show up at the MCI Center to see the game's brightest young star knowing the team has no hope of making the playoffs?"

GOAL! Yahtzee! Game Over! Well, there you have it, folks - translated loosely, no one on the Caps can skate or score, Olie is senile for being loyal, Semin is unproven and untrustworthy, Ovie can't possibly top his production of last year, and Verizon Center (yes, Scott, way to do your research - it's Verizon Center now) will be filled with the sound of crickets chirping.

Good thing he doesn't let the fact that we have those pesky 82 games to play get in the way before writing off the entire season...we're lucky to have him around.

There really are just too many negative things out there about the Caps, so I'm going to have to stop ripping them apart each time - there's just not enough room here to do it. Bottom line - we're going to surprise a lot of people this year and in years to come, so the "experts" can say whatever they want to. We just won't invite them to our parade when the Caps eventually win the Stanley Cup.

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