The Washington Capitals can keep their heads high after pushing the New York Rangers to the limit in a seven-game series that ended with a 2-1 loss tonight, but GM George McPhee’s head must be full of questions. As this post illustrates, next year’s team could be very different, yet the biggest question revolves around whether Dale Hunter will coach the team in 2012-13.
Most of the time, the decision is out of a coach’s hands, but Hunter’s OHL options mean that he might just call the shot. He told Katie Carrera and others that he hasn’t made up his mind just yet – or at least isn’t telling, as Hunter said now isn’t “the time to talk about that.”
It’s not surprising that he’s reluctant to inform the media of such a decision at this time, but one must imagine that McPhee and the Capitals will want an answer soon enough. Considering the strategic changes he instituted, the decision to bring back one or more of free agents such as Alexander Semin, Mike Green and Dennis Wideman might come down to Hunter’s own decision.
It’s been getting that spotlight since the Columbus Blue Jackets faced off against the Pittsburgh Penguins in a brisk playoff series, though it wouldn’t be surprising if the bad blood stemmed to Dubinsky’s days with New York.
To some, Dubinsky’s cross-check on Crosby will resonate far more than the end result of this game:
The bottom line is that he’ll get the last laugh, at least for now. (In-game, that moment merely drew a minor penalty.)
That’s because Dubinsky set up the overtime game-winner, and the cherry on the top of that spite sundae came with Crosby being on the ice when it happened:
They’re not just rubbing the Penguins the wrong way.
Cheap shot on a superstar, a little uncalled goalie interference and presto – Blue Jackets win!
The Buffalo Sabres probably deserved better during at least some chunks of their six-game skid, yet Jack Eichel swooped in on Friday to remind fans that there’s a light shining at the end of the tunnel.
You can watch his goal from tonight’s eventual 4-1 win against the Carolina Hurricanes in the video above.
That’s not necessarily the absolute height of his on-ice magic, yet it clearly gave his team a lift:
Coach Bylsma: Feel like after Jack's goal, the game changed for us. #gamechanger