What Will Washington Do…

12/19/2009
Anaheim Ducks v New Jersey Devils

…with all that cap room?

With the loan of Michael Nylander to Grand Rapids of the NHL, the Capitals gained financial flexibility which should allow them to acquire some help in areas they deem necessary.  As of this writing, the Caps 24 wins lead the League making the average fan ask: How can they possibly get better?

Corey Masisak of The Washington Times lists five speculative picks that would bolster this team as they prepare for a lengthy playoff campaign.  As the team stands there is little need for improvement but one could make a case for another top defender.

As we know from our history watching the playoffs, depth is key.  The team’s current construction has featured numerous players shifting up and down the teams forward lines as coach Bruce Boudreau dealt with injuries and juggling in order to find the proper mix.  Still Masisak believes the most glaring need is this top defenseman. His solution: Scott Niedermayer.

Niedermayer currently captains the Anaheim Ducks and has lead them, as well as his former team the New Jersey Devils, to the Stanley Cup.  In addition, this may be the last year in the NHL for the 36-year-old.  Although he only has three goals on the season, he would become a powerful weapon on the Washington powerplay, something dreams are made of.  He along with Mike Green would give them two elite puck-moving defensemen which would be incredibly dangerous for this already powerful offense.

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Restoring the Rosters: Anaheim Ducks

11/17/2009
Anaheim Ducks v New Jersey Devils

Based on Matthew Pouliot’s series on Circling the Bases, I have decided restore the rosters for every NHL team.  Like Pouliot, I have established some ground rules for my selections.

  1. Each team contains players they originally drafted or signed before any other NHL team.  This includes players drafted and not signed, as well as European free agents coming over at an older age.
  2. I have chosen to leave retired players off the list, and lean toward players in the AHL rather than those deported (KHL, SEL, DEL, etc.).

Essentially I am choosing the best available players for a team to succeed in the current NHL season.  All 30 teams will be covered, with grades assigned to forwards, defense and goaltending.  After all 30 articles are written, they will be ranked in order.  This series’ intent is to reward or shame NHL scouts.

The lineup for the Anaheim Ducks is as follows.


Forwards:

The forward core for the Ducks is extremely deep. Their top 9 combines skill, speed and toughness making a combination that few other teams have rivaled.  In addition to the Ducks great drafting, they successfully signed and implemented undrafted free agents into their roster.

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