What one quality do you associate with the Washington Capitals?
Different people will provide a variety of answers, especially if they are fans of the Capitals (or some of their rivals). Yet when you basically average out most of the gut reactions, my guess is that the most common response would be some variation on “offensive minded.” (Or maybe some take on “finesse.”)
(Even Bruce Boudreau wondered if they were a bunch of “prima donnas” during his profanity-laced tirade during HBO’s 24/7.)
Yet an overall style (perceived or exaggerated) doesn’t necessarily mean that every player on the team fits that profile. The Capitals employ their fair share of tougher, two-way players and one guy who brings a traditionally rugged mindset to the ice is John Erskine. The team rewarded his hard-nosed play today, signing him to a two-year contract extension.
The deal will reportedly pay him an average of $1.5 million per season and $3 million overall.
As I mentioned, Erskine’s value normally doesn’t show up on the box score. It looks like he might top his career high of nine points this season, as he already has seven points (three goals and four assists) in 31 games played.