Another solid preseason outing for the Caps again today (Sunday). The weekend is around the corner and the start of meaningful games begins again. As one of the many Caps faithful, last season’s crushing playoff exit left me in a state of déjà vu. Fans were left wondering would these Caps ever get over the hump? Would players with as much talent as Ovechkin and Backstrom ever get to kiss lord Stanley’s cup? There were so many questions. A fan base deflated with the same team year after year. What could be done to generate that excitement that this could finally be their year?
In past seasons GMGM would make minor moves to try to slightly tinker but never change what was and had been the same core. That didn’t work. Now in his second full offseason as the head man in charge, GM MacLellan finally went and made the tough choices, as I’m sure we all have seen for some time, which was this core had to get better somehow so that they could perhaps finally progress.
First, MacLellan went and traded for Oshie, doing so saw a fan favorite in Brouwer leaving town. But most were okay with this, seeing as it got the Caps what they desperately needed – right-wing scoring. Next up MacLellan added toughness and a Stanley cup winner in Justin Williams to help turn the culture. Someone with the experience of knowing what it’s like to finish opponents off. In two off-season’s we’ve seen the additions of Niskanen, Orpik, Williams and Oshie, with notable losses including Wardo, Greenie and Brouwer . MacLellan has started to really put his imprint on this team and by doing so hopefully changing post season fortunes with a different, but talented core of guys.
This preseason we’ve seen the potential (even without Backie). Oshie looks like a steal and the Caps look to be one of the stronger contenders. Could they generate that excitement after another early playoff exit? With two moves all that hope, all that excitement seems to have come back to Washington. It all begins Oct. 10th at 7pm.
What do you Cap fans think, is GM MacLellan doing a good job? Are you excited for the changes? Could this finally be our year?
By Kostas Pnevmatikatos