On Saturday, Washington Capitals head coach Peter Laviolette spoke to the media following morning skate ahead of tonight’s tilt against the Montreal Canadiens at Capital One Arena (7 PM ET, NBC Sports Washington locally; ESPN+ nationally). He discussed the Capitals’ 0-2-0 start to the 2022-23 season and why there needs to be a sense of urgency moving forward.
Laviolette shuffled lines this morning. “We’ve got to generate more,” he said. “In certain areas, we’re doing enough to shoot ourselves in the foot and sometimes you cover that by scoring more goals than the opposition and we haven’t been able to do that…we’re trying to fix the things that have been hurting us a little bit and see if we can take down the goals-against a little bit, but we need to create more as well…if you’ve been there for a little bit and it hasn’t worked, it hasn’t produced, let’s take a look at something else and see if that works.”
“There were some system breakdowns of things that just shouldn’t have happened,” Laviolette said regarding the first two games. “We did some things defensively that are uncharacteristic, that we talked about, we showed—try to realize you can’t do those things otherwise the odd-man rush is gonna catch you coming back the other way, but some of it was turnovers with the puck as well.”
The head coach also shuffled power-play units, saying, “It hasn’t worked the way we wanted it to, to start, so you try something different.”
“We’re not here to play the game. We’re here to win the game,” Laviolette said on trying to pick up two points in tonight’s tilt against Montreal. “When the first two games don’t go the way you want, yeah, the urgency cranks up. This team has been a successful team in the regular season for a lot of years, so the standard right now is unacceptable. I believe you can change it…There should be some more urgency. We’re 0-2 right now.”
Martin Fehervary was the only young defenseman to make this season’s roster after his rookie 2021-22 season. Laviolette added that the team is “fortunate” to have a “fairly consistent” defense, noting last season’s reliance on the blueline with younger players was important. “The young players have to be counted on,” he said whether it be “organizational depth” or suiting up for a game.
Laviolette likes the Fehervary-John Carlson pairing and expressed the two have good chemistry on the ice. “Martin is a really strong skater, physical defenseman…he can join the rush and play an offensive game, but I think it’s a good pair with John. John provides stability and leadership and a good mentor for a young player.”
He did not feel the need to switch up blueline pairings, calling them “solid” throughout the first two games, but noted that “our defense can play better, so they don’t get a pass either.”
By Della Young
standard right now is unacceptable.
So why has the PP coaching not changed?
Why are older players who aren’t playing to their potential still playing while younger players sit on the bench?
Why is Carlson still playing?
Why? Ummmm PL is a lousy head coach? Sorry for being Captain Obvious.
Carlson – leading by example.
Well, if anyone else has little faith in this edition of the Capitals, like me, the Hershey Bears start their season tonight. The AHL is having all their games broadcast for free. I couldn’t get it to work in the browser, but works fine through the app. Just create an account. Their full season price is fairly reasonable. $65 for all home and away games for one team.
Signed up and ready to go! Haven’t missed a Bears game in over 8 years. And yes, The AHL package is very much worth it. Highly recommend.
The app on Roku remembered my logon from last year but wouldn’t let me watch today for free. Did work on the phone app and the Fire TV app.
Crunch lost both games in shootouts, 6-5 and 5-4 but did score on 4 of their 7 powerplays. Maybe Blaine should watch the videos.
Hope the two Bears games this weekend (today @ 7 and tomorrow @ 3) are as exciting but with better results.
To be successful in the NHL today, you have to mix in young talent with your veteran corps. You can’t continue to roll out veterans and be afraid to give young players a chance. Relying on underperforming veterans gets you fired, not a Stanley Cup. Colorado last season had a great veteran corps, but they also had young guys like Newhook, O’Conner and Byram contributing. Even Makar is still a relatively young player. Laviolette relies too heavily on vets. He did that in Nashville & it got him fired. More youthful energy is needed. Other teams saw that in the offseason and made changes. Boston got rid of Cassidy because he wouldn’t use young players & they now have multiple youngsters in their lineup. The Wild have turned to younger forwards like Rossi & Boldy to run their offense. Laviolette wouldn’t change his ways in Nashville and got pink slipped. If continues to do the same in Washington, he’ll see the same ending here
To his credit, he has stuck to his guns (philosophy) of utilizing vets over youth. We’ll see how it turns out, though. We’ve already lost Jonas Siegenthaler, Axel Jonsson- Fjallby and newrly lost Martin Fehervary because of it.
“he’ll see the same ending here”
Not until the season is over no matter how badly it goes. We are stuck to his guns.
ahhhhh seigenthaler…not good enough for lavi…that alone should get him fired
Orlov, Brown, Ovechkin, Kuznetsov, Carlson combined ZERO points and -15….yup..pretty obvious where the problem lies..thats our first line and “best” defenseman!
Tonight, the Habs and the Have Nots on NBC Sports Washington.