Ovechkin doesn’t know what to say about Caps’ woes


Alex Ovechkin didn’t really make any excuses after the Washington Capitals’ fifth consecutive loss, but he didn’t just fill in the usual sports cliche blanks to the Washington Post’s Katie Carrera.

“What am I going to say? ‘Wake up everybody’ Or something like that?,” Ovechkin said. “We say too much, go out there and do it.”

It’s easy to see why Ovechkin, 28, is a little exasperated. He scored his league-leading 35th goal on Sunday, but it was the only time Washington managed to score against the New York Rangers tonight.

Some will blame Ovechkin for the Capitals’ struggles even as he continues to produce, but Adam Oates would probably agree that he’d prefer that his team follows his consistent example.

He hasn’t just been scoring, he’s creating a ton of offense, with a league-leading 260 shots on goal in 47 games played. The Capitals have plenty of questions to answer, but getting Ovechkin to be engaged hasn’t been an issue.

They might want to coach him on blurting out the usual “100 percent” and “one day at a time” platitudes, though.

Kings grab goalie insurance by signing Budaj

LOS ANGELES, CA - SEPTEMBER 22: Jhonas Enroth #1 and Peter Budaj #31 of the Los Angeles Kings stretch before a game against the Arizona Coyotes at STAPLES Center on September 22, 2015 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Andrew D. Bernstein/NHLI via Getty Images)
via Los Angeles Kings
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In slightly less interesting Los Angeles Kings news than the latest in the Mike Richards fiasco, the team handed Peter Budaj a one-year, two-way deal on Friday.

The veteran goalie’s contract pays $575K on the NHL level and $100K in the AHL (though it’s $150K guaranteed), according to Hockey’s Cap.

At the moment, it sounds like Budaj will be third on the Kings’ goalie depth chart. That says as much about how things have been going lately for Los Angeles than Budaj’s work on a PTO.

As noted above, one of the more significant moves in Budaj’s favor came when the New York Islanders claimed Jean-Francois Berube off of waivers this week.

The Kings actually waived Budaj before signing him, so this has to be a relief to a goalie with a fairly robust resume as a backup.

All apologies to Budaj, but it’s probably true that the Kings would prefer not to see him at the NHL level very often in 2015-16.

Kings, NHLPA announce settlement in Richards grievance

Los Angeles Kings v New York Rangers

The Los Angeles Kings announced today that they have “reached an agreement with Mike Richards to resolve the grievance filed in relation to the termination of his NHL Standard Players Contract. The terms are agreeable to all parties.”

The club said that it will not be commenting further “on the terms” of the settlement.

The NHLPA released a similar statement.

It was reported earlier in the week that a settlement was close to being reached; however, it wasn’t clear what salary-cap penalties the Kings would incur.

We’re starting to find out some details now:

How the final numbers differ from what the Kings would have incurred if they’d bought Richards out will be interesting to see. And if there are differences, how will they be justified?

Stay tuned.