Caps Coach Bruce Boudreau hasn’t exactly put a bounty on anyone’s head as Paul Newman did in Slap Shot but he is pretty much making it known to the media, his team, Caps fans, and anyone within ear shot that he does not like the Philadelphia Flyers and he expects a win tonight at the Verizon Center. He is clearly agitated, as many Caps fans are, that they lost to Philadelphia in last year’s playoffs and were bombed, 7-1, in last months game at the Wachovia Center.
You can read what Boudreau said yesterday and today here in Tarik El-Bashir’s blog:
And you can read Flyers Coach John Stevens reply after today’s morning skate here:
I’ve been following this team since I was 9 years old when the Caps first came here in 1974-75 so I despise the Flyers more than any other team, even Pittsburgh. I think that Stevens handled this the proper way through the media but I’d love to hear what he tells his players. Part of me thinks it is awfully cool that Boudreau is so passionate about beating Philadelphia but the analytical side of me thinks that this war of words will not only motivate the Flyers but it may be putting too much pressure on the Washington players. So I can go either way on Boudreau’s tactics but tonight the Caps go for revenge and this will be a playoff type game. The Flyers have some injury issues so they will put Martin Biron in net instead of Anterro Niittymaki who stoned Washington last time. But Caps fans or Boudreau do not want to hear any whining about injuries given what they have had to deal with so far this year. Key players Sergei Fedorov and Tom Poti are both still out for the Caps.
This will be a good one and WNST’s Puck Bus will be there. Don’t miss it!