Why the Capitals Have Nobody to Blame for the Loss of Nathan Walker But Themselves


While the Capitals (and their fan) base were hoping that popular left wing Nathan Walker would go unclaimed on waivers, the likelihood of him clearing and being sent to Hershey was unlikely. And after losing Walker on waivers to the Edmonton Oilers, the Capitals have no one to blame but themselves.

While the Capitals have lost many prospects on the waiver wire in the past, the loss of Walker hurts them both in the short and long-term. After losing a number of top-six forwards over the summer to free agency and trades, the Capitals’ forward depth was less deep than it has been in recent seasons.

While many believed Walker was the most NHL-ready prospect in the organization, the Capitals only dressed Walker in seven games this season, including his historic debut, despite the feisty forward making the team out of training camp.

Losing Walker, of course, weakens the Caps’ forward depth and with few obvious potential call-ups in Hershey, the Capitals can only blame themselves for losing the promising young forward.

Head Coach Barry Trotz has used offseason additions Alex Chiasson and Tyler Graovac in place of Walker many times this season, and while it’s unlikely the team knew that prior to the season, the fact Walker was used sparingly during his brief NHL career with the Caps proves the team felt that Walker needed to work on his game.

The smart decision would have been to send Walker down to Hershey to begin the season instead of keeping him on the roster and eventually being forced to attempt to pass him through waivers, which is what they ended up doing, and ultimately, losing one of their most promising forward prospects to another team.

How the Capitals deal with this loss going forward will be crucial, as it is unlikely the team will make the same mistake again. As mentioned above, there aren’t any obvious replacements in Hershey at the moment aside from players such as Riley Barber or perhaps Travis Boyd. It will be interesting to see how the Caps replace one of their most promising prospects and perhaps even more intriguing, how Walker progresses in Edmonton.

By Michael Fleetwood


About Michael Fleetwood

Michael Fleetwood was born into a family of diehard Capitals fans and has been watching games as long as he can remember. He was born the year the Capitals went to their first Stanley Cup Final, and is a diehard Caps fan, the owner of the very FIRST Joe Beninati jersey and since then, has met Joe himself. Michael joined the NoVa Caps team in 2015, and is most proud of the growth of the NoVa Caps community in that time. An avid photographer, Michael resides in VA.
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9 Responses to Why the Capitals Have Nobody to Blame for the Loss of Nathan Walker But Themselves

  1. Pingback: Capitals Collide With Columbus in Pivotal Saturday Night Metropolitan Division Clash | NoVa Caps

  2. Pingback: News and Notes from Friday’s Capitals Practice: Update on Andre Burakovsky, Trotz Reacts to Nathan Walker News, Bears Roster Move | NoVa Caps

  3. Some lessons are hard ones.

  4. Ron says:

    He would have had to go through waivers to be sent to Hershey our ofbtraining camp.

  5. Barry Trotz and Brian MacLellan just never seem to learn when it comes to young players. Nathan Walker’s loss to Edmonton is yet another dumb management decision reminiscent of GMGM’s stupid-assed trade of the one time jewel of our farm system (Filip Forsberg) in exchange for future Hall-of-Famers Martin Erat and Michael Latta…

    And NO….I will NOT forget that one since it contributed to the very lack of quality young forward depth that this article above references…

    What a pair of fucking imbeciles (GMBM and Trotz)


    Sta. Monica

  6. hockeydruid says:

    Walker was in a bad position….whenever he was going to be send down he would have had to pass thru waivers and would have been claimed but there may have been less of a chance in training camp than now. To be honest I think that GMBM is the second coming of GMGM and stinks worse as he should have learned better than doing some of the things he has done. Loosing Alzner for nothing was understandable but still inexcusable. Lets see how he handles the same situation with Carlson and if he learned anything. Both Gms’ were/are fond of trading prospects or draft picks for aging or free agents in an attempt to go deep in the playoffs. Yet none of the players that they ahve traded for have helped them at all. Isnt it time to just go with the 23 guys who have done it all season and tell them we think you can do it and keep your picks and young players and try to instill confidence in your players rather than telling them you cannot do it without….insert name.

  7. Anonymous says:

    I expect them to re sign JC as the cap is going higher next year… I could be wrong here but I think protected LE last spring but not NS? They protected MJ and then traded him for nothing… Trade Grubbie for a young D

  8. Pingback: Oilers Place Nathan Walker on Waivers | NoVa Caps

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