Capitals’ Carl Hagelin: “It’s Not Like We’re Making A Ton Of Mistakes, But The Ones We’re Making End Up Costing Us”

On Thursday, Washington Capitals left-wing Carl Hagelin spoke to the media following morning skate ahead of their tilt against the Montreal Canadiens at Bell Center (7 PM ET, NBC Sports Washington). He discussed the team’s execution in games recently and facing former New York Rangers teammate Martin St. Louis, who was hired by Montreal as the club’s head coach.

“It’s not like we’re making a ton of mistakes, but the ones we’re making end up costing us,” Hagelin said on the team’s execution. “You go through [falls] when it comes to the [penalty kill] throughout the year, and the run we’ve been on the last 10-20 games has been unacceptable…we’ve got to make sure we’re more detailed, and I think if we do that, we’re going to be fine…it’s time to change that tonight.”

He said the Capitals have “to be aggressive” on the PK  “to be successful.” “If you just sit back and let the other team feel good about themselves and move the puck around, it’s way tougher and you can spend a lot more time in your own end…when we have a chance to make a clear, we’ve got to clear it.”

On Thursday’s game up north, Hagelin said, “We’re playing a team that’s going to have a lot of energy with a new coach. At the end of the day, tonight should be one of those nights you see us come out flying, dictating. That’s the type of team we should be tonight after the last 5-6 games.”

Montreal fired head coach Dominique Ducharme on Wednesday less than a year after hiring him as their interim head coach and losing to the Tampa Bay Lightning in the 2021 Stanley Cup Final, which lasted five games. Former Lightning forward Martin St. Louis is set to be the head coach for the rest of the season.

“I expect a pretty desperate team,” Hagelin said on the Canadiens. “Usually, that happens when there’s a new coach, a new voice that comes in. You know they are going to play hard…this is probably one of those things where they get re-energized for the season, and at the same time, we can’t focus on that. We’ve got to step it up. We’ve got to be the team who initiates that.”

Hagelin and St. Louis played together as members of the Rangers and both reached the Stanley Cup Final in 2014. On his former teammate, Hagelin said, “He was a player [who] loved to talk about every shift…you sit down on the bench, he’d give you pointers [and] think about what we could do better. He was a very passionate guy. He was a vocal leader…I saw him as a guy who could get into coaching. I didn’t know it would be this quick.

By Della Young

About Della Young

Della Young is an aspiring novelist and screenwriter who earned a BFA in Creative Writing from Full Sail University in 2021. She is currently pursuing a Master of Arts in Screenwriting from Regent University. Della comes from a family of big Capitals fans and became inspired to start writing for hockey in 2019. In her spare time, she enjoys traveling, cooking, and working on both sides of the camera. Follow Della on Twitter: @dellayoung
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