Tag Archive | "d.c."

Grunfeld Building a Contender with Stellar Off-Season

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Grunfeld Building a Contender with Stellar Off-Season

Posted on 18 July 2014 by Nick Dorsey

 

The Washington Wizards 2013-14 season was among the most successful the franchise has had in quite sometime. There is a lot of momentum from last season to build off of and general manager Ernie Grunfeld had a task ahead of him going into the off-season. Continuity was the main goal and for the most part they succeeded.

Priority number one for the organization was bringing back center Marcin Gortat. Washington acquired the Polish center from the Phoenix Suns in a trade last off-season and a first round pick was part of the price. Gortat had one of the best years of his career averaging 13 points, nearly 10 rebounds and had 37 double-doubles.

Gortat was a big difference maker for the Wizards last year and they could not afford for him to walk. He helped elevate the franchise to a playoff contender and giving up a first rounder for Gortat made him nonexpendable. The front office took care of priority number one by signing the Polish center to a five year $60 million deal.

The second priority for Grunfeld was bringing back starting small forward Trevor Ariza. The 10-year veteran had one of the better seasons in his career averaging 14 points and shooting 40% from the three-point line. Ariza also brought a great defensive presence and should have gotten recognized for his defensive skills on one of the All-NBA defensive teams.

Ariza wanted the big contract, as he was most likely entering his last big free agency period of his career. Wanting long-term financial security, this was his best time to get that.

Washington did not want to overspend for the services of Ariza, but they expressed interest in bringing him back. Unfortunately, they were unable to come to an agreement and Ariza chose to sign with the Houston Rockets for a four-year deal worth $32 million.

The loss of Ariza at first left a large hole for the former third overall selection Otto Porter to fill, but Grunfeld made a big move.
Former Brooklyn Net Paul Pierce signed on the dotted line and was officially a Washington Wizard. This move came as a bit of a surprise to many, but it is a move that had to happen. There are several different opinions about Pierce at this point in his career, but this was an outstanding addition to the roster.

Entering his 17th season, Pierce played a career low last year in terms of minutes per game. He might have some age to him, but Pierce brings qualities to this team they desperately need.

When Ariza left for Houston, a lot of experience within this team was lost. Trevor Ariza won a championship with the Lakers and brought that championship experience to a team that was so young and not full of playoff experience. The Wizards now get that back with Pierce, who has won a championship with Boston and was once awarded Finals MVP.

Washington was able to close games in their first round series against the Chicago Bulls, but found difficulty in closing out games against the Indiana Pacers. Bradley Beal was that guy first round, but Paul George made it tough for him second round to do so. Nobody else was able to step up in that role and Paul Pierce brings that ability with him.

The Truth is known as one of the more clutch players in the NBA and is one of the best closers. With the experience he brings to the lineup, no stage is too big for him and it will rub off on the rest of the squad.

Otto Porter is due to get an increased workload this year and right now the Pierce signing does not limit that. Pierce will be great for Porter from a mentor standpoint and he is not killing a severe amount of playing time for the second year player. With Pierce only getting about 28 minutes a game last season, Porter will still get plenty of minutes to gain experience.

This situation could get a little tricky over a month into the season once Martell Webster gets back onto the floor. For now, the signing of Pierce is a huge addition for the Wizards due to the experience he brings and the ability to close out in the big moments.

Washington has other needs to address this off-season such as providing better depth in the front-court and adding another guard to the mix. The Wizards made several trades in the past few days to add to the depth in the front-court.

Kris Humphries and DeJuan Blair were added to the roster through sign and trade deals. Humphries is a solid shooter from mid range much like Nene, except he is not as physical and defensively sound as Nene. Blair appears undersized at 6’7 for the low post, but he is a physical player able to rebound and score inside well.

With Drew Gooden set to return as well, the Wizards front court depth is much better heading into the season than they were last year. The roster is almost set nearing the 15-player maximum and Washington has flexibility with that last spot.

Ernie Grunfeld has done a tremendous job of building a contender in the Eastern conference. He has done a great job of setting up the team for success now, but also the future as well. Many of the new acquisitions have short-term deals with player options in the mix. These contracts give an opportunity for the front office to clear up a good amount of cap space.

This flexibility with the roster and the salary cap already is raising discussions on whether the Wizards are positioning themselves to make a run for Kevin Durant in 2016. With the LeBron returning home story just happening, eyes are already gazing upon Durant to potentially make a return home to DC.

Landing Durant is a possibility with an attractive roster to surround himself with and the cap room to get a big deal. It also bodes well for Washington when they chose to hire Durant’s former high school coach David Adkins. The pieces are falling into place for the potential signing, but that time is out on the horizon.

The Wizards took a big step as a franchise last season winning their first playoff series since 2005. With playoff experience gained and good pieces added to the roster, Grunfeld has the Wizards set to be a big-time contender in the Eastern Conference.

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Dorsey’s Dugout- USA Helps Soccer and Caps Make Moves

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Dorsey’s Dugout- USA Helps Soccer and Caps Make Moves

Posted on 02 July 2014 by Nick Dorsey

 

USA

All of America was on the edge of their seats once the United States and Belgium match went to extra time. Despite the 2-1 loss in the first round of the World Cup sweet sixteen, that same excitement for soccer in this country will only grow.

The United States does not have the same kind of intensity within its fan base as the other countries in the World Cup, but this team might have changed the popularity of the sport going forward. A team that was not given a lick of a chance to advance out of the group of death, team USA silenced the critics and gave the fans across the country something to be proud of.

When team USA went down 2-0 in extra time to Belgium, the life was sucked out of the American fan base and their World Cup hopes had diminished. All the excitement that Klinsmanns squad brought to all of America seemed to be lost. Then Julian Green scored a goal off of a wonderful pass from Michael Bradley.

Even though the one goal was not enough to force a round of penalty kicks, it gave the team hope. Not only did Julian Greens goal give hope at a chance for a comeback, but also the goal symbolized hope for the game of soccer in this country.

Team USA does not have the talent that the other world powers have in the World Cup. Other teams feature their best athletes within the country to represent their nation. Since the United States has other professional leagues like the NFL and NBA, the best athletes in the country do not play for Team USA soccer.

While team USA does not have the same talent as the other world powers, they showed the heart needed to compete on the big stage. They tied one of the best teams in the world that featured soccers second best player and only lost by one to Germany who is amongst the worlds best.

The fact that the United States was able to advance out of the group of death and other soccer powers such as Spain, England, Italy and Portugal could not is astonishing. There are a lot of positives to come away with from the performance of the American squad and it will for sure carry over to the next Cup.

It was Jurgen Klinsmanns first opportunity as head coach for Team USA and he got the job done well. He made good adjustments during games within group play and came away with good results. The former German athlete did a great job in his first appearance as head coach for team USA and the fans will sure be by his side as the next Cup approaches.

T.J. Oshie was the American “hero” during the Olympic games in hockey for his performance in the shootout against Russia. After the stellar performance, Oshie was a household name everywhere in America. The same situation came to be when USA goalkeeper Tim Howard had a record-breaking match against Belgium.

Sure Howard has been the goalie for team USA the past few World Cups, but Clint Dempsey was the biggest name when it came to USA soccer. After the Belgium match, Howard is being called a hero for his incredible individual performance. With Howard now being recognized as a household name similar to Oshie, now fans in America might check out the goaltender play some in the English premiere league.

There are so many different parts of this team that make for a brighter future for soccer in this country. There is a plethora of young talent, new stars that have been born and a solid coach in control of it all. With all that being said, not only does team USA have a bright future, but also the popularity of soccer in the country.

Grading Capitals Free Agency Moves

The free agency period in the NHL kicked into high gear July 1st at noon and the Washington Capitals made several moves. New General manager Brian MacLellan got his first crack at making decisions at the helm and started the first day off with a few signings.

Washington had several needs heading into free agency such as finding a top-4 defenseman, a veteran backup goalie and a second line center. MacLellan began the day by signing veteran backup Justin Peters from the Carolina Hurricanes.

Peters, 27 years old, got to play in twenty-one games last season and finished with a .919 save percentage. This is a good addition to the Caps roster for several reasons.

The message being sent to Braden Holtby with this signing is that he is clearly the number one goalie on the team. Peters is a career backup who is trying to prove he is amongst the top tier backup goalies in the league. This should come to be no threat to Holtby as he will be leading the team onto the ice this year.

The best part about this deal is that it is cap-friendly. Peters signed a 2-year deal for $1.9 million that comes to be about $950,000 a season. Finding a veteran backup for this cost allows for Washington to make other moves during free agency. Grading the Justin Peters signing, a B- is a fair grade.

Brian MacLellan was not done after the Peters signing as he added two pieces to the biggest weakness on the roster. Two former Pittsburgh Penguin defensemen were added to the Capitals top six rotation. One is considered a good signing and the other is a bit of a head scratcher.

Brooks Orpik, 33, signed a 5-year deal with the Capitals worth $27.5 million. This addition to the team came to be a huge surprise  for many reasons. Orpik is 33 years old and is on the down side of his career. What makes this deal not so sexy is the money and longevity of the deal. Paying a player past his prime $5.5 million a year is quite risky. It also does not make sense giving a player who is 33 years of age a five-year deal.

Although there are a few negatives to the signing of Orpik, he does bring some qualities that will help this Capitals team. The former Penguin has been one of the assistant captains for Pittsburgh since 2008. He has been in a leadership role for several years and the Caps could use more leaders especially on the defensive end.

Most of the Capitals blue liners favor playing a style in which they like to carry the puck. They are considered finesse defenders and Orpik is the opposite of that. Brooks Orpik is the physical kind of defenseman that Washington needs. The Brooks Orpik signing gets a C- grade.

Joining fellow Pittsburgh teammate in Washington is new Capitals defenseman Matt Niskanen. The former Penguin cashed in on a seven-year deal worth $40.25 million that equates to a $5.75 cap hit per year. Niskanen finished the 2013-14 regular season with 46 total points and a +33 rating. Niskanen is a very similar defender to what the Caps current defensive roster already has.

This was the best addition that new general manager Brian MacLellan made all day during the first bit of free agency. The Caps are getting a defender who is 27 years old and is in the prime of his career. He is a versatile defender who also has a good plus/minus rating. Niskanen was expected to get $6 million or more per season when he hit the market, but Washington managed to get him just under that range.

With the additions of Orpik and Niskanen, the team’s biggest weakness has been repaired. Last season featured a never-ending cycle of defensemen getting their chances to start. The Caps often called up prospects from Hershey to start at the blue line, but those times look to be done.

The defensive pairings look to be Carlson-Alzner, Niskanen-Orpik and Green-Orlov. The pairings could change as Orpik does have experience playing with Carlson during the Olympics. As of now, those pairings have a chance to resemble what it will look like when the team hits the ice this season.

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Caps Off-Season Ahead, Potential Buyouts for Washington?

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Caps Off-Season Ahead, Potential Buyouts for Washington?

Posted on 13 June 2014 by Nick Dorsey

The most strenuous part of the NHL off-season was taken care of for Caps owner Ted Leonsis when he filled in the vacant positions at the top of the organization. Barry Trotz is now behind the bench and Brian MacLellan is the guy responsible for bringing players in to fill the players bench. Now that a head coach is in place along with a general manager, what is next for the Washington organization as the Stanley Cup playoffs is near conclusion?

MacLellan has already dealt away pending UFA Jaroslav Halak and re-upped the franchises deal with the AHL affiliate Hershey Bears as interim GM, but that is only the tip of the ice berg. MacLellan has a lot on his plate this off-season and his time to shine begins in the near future.

The Caps have tough decisions to make on veteran players that have been around the organization for quite some time now as the end of the Stanley Cup playoffs is on the horizon. Some of those decisions are whether to buy out any of the veteran players that are currently on the roster.

The buyout period in the NHL begins 48 hours after the Stanley Cup comes to a close. So if the Kings close out the series tonight in Los Angeles, the buyout period would begin Sunday and would come to an end on the 30th of June. When this time begins, there are a few names that come to mind that could be potential buyout candidates.

Brooks Laich is the most common name as the top buyout candidate on the Capitals roster. Laich turns 31 this month and still has three years remaining on a six-year deal he signed in 2011 under former general manager George McPhee. Since signing that deal, Laich has not been consistently in the lineup to earn the kind of payday he was given.

When the NHL lockout occurred during the 2012-13 season, Laich suffered groin injuries playing overseas that have kept him in and out of the lineup for the past few seasons. During the past two seasons, Brooks has only played 60 out of the 130 games because of his groin difficulties. In his 51 games played this last year, Laich produced 15 total points (8 G, 7 A), which is not going to cut it as a top six forward.

So the first decision to make that comes to new general manager Brian MacLellan’s table is should the Caps buyout Brooks Laich? If I were to make a decision or have a word in the discussion, my answer would be yes. Washington needs to move on from Brooks Laich and here is why.

First of all, if MacLellan decides to make this move, the following would occur. A buyout for Laich would mean the Caps would need to pay him two- thirds of his current salary with double the length. Breaking that down thanks to Capgeek.com, that would mean Washington would owe Brooks $8.33 million total over a six-year period. With the financial aspect of Laich’s buyout covered, here is why it is a good hockey move.

Paying Laich the kind of money he now currently earns warrants him to be a top six forward. Producing only 15 points per 50+ games played is not the kind of production you want out of a top six forward. So, lack of production is one reason why a Brooks Laich buyout is reasonable, but there is more.

The top six can be viewed as crowded with the current Capitals roster and having Laich still in the lineup can be seen as problematic. Washington has promising young prospects that need to see more ice time and having a crowded top six lineup can cause valuable minutes to diminish. Young players such as Evgeny Kuznetsov and Tom Wilson need to get within the top six rotation in order for them to grow and show what they can do at the highest level.

Kuznetsov showed a promising future last year in his small stint after coming over from the KHL in Russia. Tom Wilson also has shown great things over time playing amongst the third and fourth lines. Kuzy has his place in the top six already, but keeping Laich in the rotation keeps a guy like Wilson out of the six. Wilson is a physical player that is not afraid to hit or fight anyone on the ice and has shown glimpses of being a real good all around player.

With all that Wilson has shown, it is now time in the upcoming season to see what he can do within the first two lines. He needs to develop a better offensive game and surrounding him potentially with Ovechkin or Backstrom would do wonders for his development Increased ice time is the experience that Wilson needs and Laich could be preventing that from happening.

It doesn’t stop at Wilson and Kuznetsov as the Caps also have a promising prospect that could be trying to creep up into the roster for the upcoming season. Last years first round pick, Andre Burakovsky, is a player to watch out for.

Burakovsky spent his first year in the Caps organization playing for the Erie Otters. In the 57 regular season games that Andre got to play as left wing for the Otters, he recorded 87 points (41 G, 46 A). He also was productive in the 14-playoff games he played in Erie, finishing with 10 goals and 3 assists. This kind of offensive talent might need to find its way on to the major roster, especially for a team that struggled to score at even strength play on a consistent basis.

So with a crowded top six due to young and upcoming talent and a lack of production, it is time for the Caps to move on and buyout Brooks Laich. He is an aging player who has yet to prove he can stay on the ice consistently in the past few seasons. The young players need to be able to get on the ice and gain valuable experience that can bode well for the team in the future.

Another name that comes up as a potential buyout player is veteran defensemen Mike Green. Buying out Green would not be a good idea for the Caps due to their defense being the weakest unit on the team.

The Caps defensive rotation last year was a never-ending carousel with over double-digit defenders getting a chance to hit the ice. Green was not at his best throughout the season, but that is not all on him.

The top priority for MacLellan is to bring in another top four defensemen in the rotation. Adding a talented top four defensemen to pair with Green could help Green improve his play. Buying out a defender would leave another gaping hole for a unit that does not need any more holes.

Keeping Green is a necessity because not only brining in another top four-defensemen talent could rejuvenate Greens game, but also his presence in the offensive zone is imperative to this teams success. When Green is on the power play, he adds another element that many defenders on this team cannot. When Green is a threat to shoot from the point, it is another threat on the power play that helps free up Ovechkin. When Green is not on the ice, teams key on Ovechkin’s blast and prevent him from producing. The power play unit is a lot more lethal when teams have to account for Green as a potential shooter from the blue line.

So a Mike Green buyout is not a real good idea, especially when the depth at defense is an issue. Jack Hillen was hurt for almost the last season’s entirety and is still getting back to normal form. Dmitry Orlov has also sustained a wrist injury that he is still recovering from. So with defensive depth being an issue and with that limited depth in recovery mode, buying out Green should not be an option.

The first task at hand for the upcoming off-season for Brian MacLellan is coming in shortly and must be sorted out before the June 30th deadline. This is just the first of many decisions that “GMac” must make as the teams new general manager.

The logical move in my mind is for GMac to buyout Laich and keep Green. After that, the next move of interest is whether to keep Mikhail Grabovski in DC or let him walk in free agency. My thoughts on that move will come in a different column. Until then, it will be interesting to see what MacLellan decides to do once the Cup comes to a conclusion. Once the Cup is hoisted, Caps fans be alert because the time begins to tick on the buyout clock.

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Terps announce events in Baltimore, College Park, DC to celebrate official B1G move

Posted on 11 June 2014 by WNST Staff

Maryland Announces Special Big Ten Events

Terps set to celebrate move to the Big Ten June 30 and July 1

 

COLLEGE PARK, Md. – The University of Maryland Department of Athletics has announced a string of exciting events to celebrate the Terps’ historic transition to the Big Ten Conference on July 1.

“We are eager to celebrate this big moment in our history,” University of Maryland President Wallace D. Loh said. “We have chosen our future, spent a year of intense preparation, and have been welcomed by the Big Ten with exceptional camaraderie. We are academic partners. Now, we cannot wait to meet in competition.”

On Monday, June 30, Maryland will kick off the two-day festivities with a trip to the Under Armour Brand House in Baltimore for the official launch of exclusive Maryland/Big Ten inaugural apparel. The event, which is open to the public, is slated to begin at noon and will include a brief program featuring Big Ten Commissioner Jim Delany, Under Armour leadership and Maryland coaches and staff. Music will be provided by the Mighty Sound of Maryland.

“The University of Maryland and Maryland athletics are excited to celebrate its new era in the Big Ten Conference,” Director of Athletics Kevin Anderson said. “This is an outstanding conference comprised of flagship research universities and our new partners share our pursuit of both athletic and academic excellence. We are thrilled to join the Big Ten and look forward to officially beginning this next chapter for the University of Maryland.”

The fun continues with an event Monday night at Nationals Park where Maryland and the Big Ten Network (BTN) will play host to a block party at the Fairgrounds, adjacent to the ballpark, beginning at 4 p.m. There will be an appearance by the Big Ten mascots and all Big Ten alumni are encouraged to attend. The Big Ten will be honored with the Nationals Spirit Award during a pre-game ceremony prior to first pitch of the Nationals/Rockies game at 7:05 p.m. Tickets are available for the public on a limited basis at a special Maryland group rate of $14 by clicking here.

“The Big Ten couldn’t be more proud to officially welcome the University of Maryland to the conference on July 1,” Big Ten Commissioner James E. Delany said. “President Wallace Loh, Kevin Anderson and the rest of the Maryland community have been great partners during the transition period, and we look forward to building a successful future together.”

On Maryland’s first official day as a member of the Big Ten Conference, there will be an on-campus celebration on Mitchell Field (near the M Circle) from noon-1:30 p.m. The event will feature the special unveiling of the Big Ten ice cream, interactive games, t-shirt giveaways and appearances by the Mighty Sound of Maryland, Testudo and the Spirit Squad.

In addition, BTN will dedicate its entire programming to the University of Maryland on Tuesday, July 1 to commemorate the Terps’ inaugural day in the Big Ten.

 

BIG TEN/MARYLAND CELEBRATION SCHEDULE OF EVENTS

Monday, June 30

 

Under Armour Brand House

700 South President St.

Baltimore, MD 21202

 

11:45 a.m.

  • Maryland staff/coaches scheduled to arrive at Under Armour Brand House

 

Noon

  • Launch of exclusive Maryland/Big Ten inaugural apparel at Under Armour Brand House
  • Brief program featuring Big Ten Commissioner Jim Delany, University of Maryland Director of Athletics Kevin Anderson, Maryland coaches and staff and Under Armour leadership

 

The Fairgrounds at Nationals Park

1299 Half Street, SE

Washington, DC 20003

 

4:00 p.m.

  • University of Maryland/BTN Block Party

 

Nationals Park

1500 S. Capital Street, SE

Washington, DC 20003

 

6:45 p.m.

  • Big Ten Conference honored with Nationals Spirit Award in pre-game ceremony at ballpark

 

7:05 p.m.

  • First pitch Washington Nationals vs. Colorado Rockies

 

Tuesday, July 1

 

Mitchell Field (near the M Circle)

University of Maryland

College Park, MD 20740

 

Noon – 1:30 p.m.

  • Campus Big Ten Celebration

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Grubauer a Bright Spot in DC

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Grubauer a Bright Spot in DC

Posted on 02 January 2014 by Nick Dorsey

The next man up is a common phrase used when teams look for some athlete to step up into a role usually unfamiliar. When it comes to goaltending in Washington, the next man up is a regular occurrence. Semyon Varlamov was once a young goalie for Washington that looked like he had a bright future in DC. Then after Varlamov came Michal Neuvirth. The 2010-11 regular season also had an interesting situation as well. Tomas Vokoun was the original starter until he suffered an injury, so back in was Neuvirth. Toward the tail end of the 2011 season, Neuvirth suffered an injury and the Capitals were down two starting goalies. The team was making a late season push and they needed a goalie to step up. Braden Holtby, the prospect from Hershey, had to fill the role.

Holtby was tremendous in the 2011 Stanley Cup playoffs, especially against the Boston Bruins first round. Holtby was one of the main reasons why the Bruins did not have a repeat chance at the Cup. Holtby was also solid in last season’s playoff series against the New York Rangers nearly going toe to toe with Henrik Lundqvist.

Holtby came into the 2013 regular season as the main guy with Neuvirth filling the back up role. When Neuvy injured himself in pregame warm-ups before one of his starts, Holtby was back in. Neuvirth was put on IR and that left Washington with just Holtby as the lone net minder. Braden got a large workload, starting 14 out of 15 games. The wear and tear of starting so many games started to show on Holtby, so the Capitals needed to look for someone to step up.

Philipp Grubauer, a 4th round pick in 2010, was the next man up. Grubauer first saw action in a relief effort for Holtby, after a rough start versus the Hurricanes in early December. He was solid in that third period start against Carolina, so Grubi was called upon to start his first game against New York. On the road against the Rangers, Grubauer was fantastic allowing only one goal in a Washington win. After that, Grubauer started to see his starts increase.

He has now started nine games as a rookie and his numbers are extremely impressive so far. Philipp has a 5-2-2 record as a starter for Washington and has posted a .938% save percentage. His 2.02 goals against average is a great number as well.

His starting record is solid, but even better when looking into the shootout losses. Grubi gave his team great chances in those shootouts, forcing a 10 and 6 round shootout in those match-ups. So not only has Grubi been solid between the pipes over the course of a 60-minute game, but he’s got big-time poise when the pressure is on.

The Capitals goal-tending situation has become a topic of discussion as of late with the stunning play from the 22 year old. Michal Neuvirth seems like the odd man out, so his future in Washington is uncertain. Braden Holtby went into the season as the number one goalie unquestioned, but now things could be different. If Philipp Grubauer keeps playing at this level for the rest of the season, the Capitals could have a crucial decision to make at goalie heading into the post season. There has been so much turnover at the goalie position for years in DC with all the young goalies stepping up consistently. It probably has most fans in a craze because they so desperately want to know which goalies jersey they will be wearing to the games. While it could be frustrating to a fan in that sense, this situation is a good problem to have. Having two good goalies is better than having one or even none. Goalie is such an important position especially when it comes to the playoffs. The Capitals have a couple good goalies now and the decision for whom to start at that time will eventually work itself out. The number of young goalies that have come in and stepped up in recent years, shows how well Washington has done drafting goalies and also developing them in the minor leagues. Whether it is Braden Holtby or Philipp Grubauer that earns the number one spot heading into the playoffs, the Capitals are in good hands. The fans that rock the red have plenty to get excited about when it comes to their young goalies.

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Ride WNST Caps Puck Bus to D.C. for Dallas Stars (April 1)

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Ride WNST Caps Puck Bus to D.C. for Dallas Stars (April 1)

Posted on 16 December 2013 by WNST Trips

The 2014 WNST.net “Rock The Red” Puck Bus is back! This time, we’ll be taking a group of hockey fans from White Marsh and Catonsville down to Washington, D.C. on Tuesday, April 1 to watch the Capitals host the Dallas Stars in a 7:05 p.m. game.

All aboard another WNST Rock The Red Puck Bus to D.C. for another 60 minutes of old-time hockey with the Washington Capitals. Our Gunther Motorcoaches will depart from the White Marsh Mall at 4:15 p.m. with a pickup from Catonsville/UMBC I-95 Park N Ride (at Rt. 166) at 4:45 p.m.. All tickets are upper level in the Verizon Center and include a limited supply of cold beer (for those 21-and-over) en route and snacks, soft drinks and fun videos and giveaways.

We will be able to accommodate larger groups upon request and always keep groups together.

We hope you join us for a night of hockey and fun aboard the WNST Rock The Red Puck Bus to D.C.

As always, families are welcomed and encouraged to join us!

COST: $75 per person

Pickup Location
Mobile contact #

Here’s a look at one of our Puck Bus trips via WNSTv:

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Ride WNST Caps Puck Bus to D.C. for L.A. Kings (March 25)

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Ride WNST Caps Puck Bus to D.C. for L.A. Kings (March 25)

Posted on 16 December 2013 by WNST Trips

The 2014 WNST.net “Rock The Red” Puck Bus is back! This time, we’ll be taking a group of hockey fans from White Marsh and Catonsville down to Washington, D.C. on Tuesday, March 25 to watch the Capitals host the Los Angeles Kings in a 7:05 p.m. game.

All aboard another WNST Rock The Red Puck Bus to D.C. for another 60 minutes of old-time hockey with the Washington Capitals. Our Gunther Motorcoaches will depart from the White Marsh Mall at 4:15 p.m. with a pickup from Catonsville/UMBC I-95 Park N Ride (at Rt. 166) at 4:45 p.m.. All tickets are upper level in the Verizon Center and include a limited supply of cold beer (for those 21-and-over) en route and snacks, soft drinks and fun videos and giveaways.

We will be able to accommodate larger groups upon request and always keep groups together.

We hope you join us for a night of hockey and fun aboard the WNST Rock The Red Puck Bus to D.C.

As always, families are welcomed and encouraged to join us!

COST: $75 per person

Pickup Location
Mobile contact #

Here’s a look at one of our Puck Bus trips via WNSTv:

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Ride WNST Caps Puck Bus to D.C. for Toronto Maple Leafs (March 16)

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Ride WNST Caps Puck Bus to D.C. for Toronto Maple Leafs (March 16)

Posted on 16 December 2013 by WNST Trips

The 2014 WNST.net “Rock The Red” Puck Bus is back! This time, we’ll be taking a group of hockey fans from White Marsh and Catonsville down to Washington, D.C. on Sunday, March 16 to watch the Capitals host the Toronto Maple Leafs in a 3 p.m. game.

All aboard another WNST Rocks The Red Puck Bus to D.C. for another 60 minutes of old-time hockey with the Washington Capitals. Our Gunther Motorcoaches will depart from the White Marsh Mall at noon with a pickup from Catonsville/UMBC I-95 Park N Ride (at Rt. 166) at 12:30. All tickets are upper level in the Verizon Center and include a limited supply of cold beer (for those 21-and-over) en route and snacks, soft drinks and fun videos and giveaways.

We will be able to accommodate larger groups upon request and always keep groups together.

We hope you join us for a night of hockey and fun aboard the WNST Rocks The Red Puck Bus to D.C.

As always, families are welcomed and encouraged to join us!

COST: $90 per person

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Here’s a look at one of our Puck Bus trips via WNSTv:

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Ovechkin Gets Overtime Winner, top Jackets 4-3

Posted on 12 November 2013 by Nick Dorsey

The Capitals retuned home after a two game road trip against some of the best from the West. The Caps came away with one point out of the possible four, so the Caps were eager get back to DC. Four of the next five games are at home, first up were the Columbus Blue Jackets.

The first period was in favor of the visiting Blue Jackets, generating more scoring opportunities and shots, and then the second period featured more action. After defensemen Steven Oleksy got an interference penalty at the five minute mark, goalie Sergei Bobrovsky got a delay of game penalty to even the playing field. On the Capitals power play following the four on four play, Dubinsky of the Blue Jackets struck first with a short-handed goal. The Caps had a couple of power play opportunities, but could not convert. It took a great effort by Martin Erat to set up John Carlson for the first Washington goal of the game. Erat drove the slot and tipped the puck cross side for an easy empty netter for Carlson. Carlson has been hot for the Caps as of late, scoring in four of his last six games. The Capitals then had a power play opportunity just over a minute before the end of the second period. They could not convert in the second or third period.

The Blue Jackets had two power play chances in the first half of the third period. It was not until the second power play where a goal was scored, except it wasn’t Columbus. After the puck was misplayed off of the boards, Joel Ward scored a short-handed goal to give the Capitals a 2-1 lead. Not one, but two short-handed goals in this Metropolitan division matchup tonight. Just minutes later, The Jackets evened up the score with a shot from the outside. The puck found its way off of a deflection with a herd of bodies in front of Braden Holtby. Then at the 14-minute mark and 19 seconds, Cam Atkinson scored on a breakaway goal to give Columbus the one goal lead. The bouncing puck was misplayed by Mike Green, which led to an open lane to the goal.

It looked as if the Capitals were on their way to another third period collapse until Mikhail Grabovski scored his 100th career goal with just one minute and 45 seconds left to play. It was the sixth goal of the season and Grabovski is riding a hot streak in which he has 11 points in his last 11 games. The Capitals were heading to overtime in a situation that seems much to familiar over the short part of the season so far. Just over a minute and a half into overtime, Marcus Johansson made a spectacular effort dangling through traffic and getting a shot off inside. The shot created a rebound for the captain Alex Ovechkin to score an overtime winner. Alex Ovechkin’s overtime game winner is the 14th goal of the season.

The Capitals showed a great team effort across the board in getting this late comeback win. They avoided another third period collapse and rallied together before it was too late. The third line of Jason Chimera, Mikhail Grabovski and Joel Ward continue to be a dominant presence on the ice, recording two of the four goals for the team tonight. Joel Ward has scored nine goals in the first nineteen games, the best start of his career. John Carlson continues to be an all around great defensemen with an emerging offensive game. He has been great on that end in the last six games, holding the blue line and joining in with offensive rushes. Then there were great efforts by the fourth liners, Tom Wilson showing his physicality on a big hit and Michael Latta was tremendous in the penalty kill tonight. Last, but not least, Alex Ovechkin continues to have a great start to the short season, scoring the game winner tonight. The Caps travel to Detroit this Friday to take on the Red Wings and then return home for three straight games. The Caps were 4-3 Overtime winners tonight, they look keeping winning in an effort to pursue the Pittsburgh Penguins for the top spot in the Metropolitan Division.

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Ogden to be honored in hometown Friday

Posted on 19 September 2013 by WNST Staff

Canton, Ohio – Sept. 13, 2013 – Pro football legend Jonathan Ogden will be recognized by the Pro Football Hall of Fame and Allstate Insurance Company in Washington, D.C., on Friday, Sept. 20, as part of “Hometown Hall of Famers™,” a national program honoring the hometown roots of the sport’s greatest coaches, players, and contributors with special ceremonies and plaque dedication events in local communities.

“’Hometown Hall of Famers™’ has been warmly embraced by communities and Hall of Famers alike,” said George Veras, Pro Football Hall of Fame Enterprises president and CEO. “We are thrilled to continue our partnership with Allstate to bring the Pro Football Hall of Fame to communities across the country and congratulate Jonathan Ogden and St. Albans School on bringing a piece of the Pro Football Hall of Fame to Washington, D.C.”

An 11-time Pro Bowler and former high school standout at St. Albans School, Ogden will be presented with his “Hometown Hall of Famer™” plaque during a special ceremony at 8:45 a.m. ET on Friday, Sept. 20, in the school’s gymnasium, where the plaque will live permanently to serve as an inspiration for the school’s students and athletes. The presentation will be made by Ogden’s former athletic director from St. Albans School, Oliver ‘Skip” Grant.

“To be part of a program that brings the prestige and tradition of the Pro Football Hall of Fame to communities like Washington, D.C., is an honor for Allstate, our agents and employees,” said Lisa Cochrane, Allstate’s senior vice president of marketing.

The ceremony will be attended by St. Albans School students, faculty, staff, alumni and Ogden’s family members and close friends. Vance Wilson, St. Albans School headmaster, will serve as the Master of Ceremonies.

In addition to the plaque, a commemorative Jonathan Ogden “Hometown Hall of Famers™” road sign will be on display in Washington, D.C.

An Outland Trophy Award-winning tackle from UCLA, Ogden was the first-ever first-round draft pick of the Baltimore Ravens in the 1996 NFL Draft. The consensus All-Rookie pick helped the Ravens climb to the top of the NFL during his 12 seasons in Baltimore. A great pass protector and run blocker, Ogden helped lead the Ravens to their first-ever Super Bowl in 2000 where they beat the New York Giants in a 34-7 victory in Super Bowl XXXV.

Ogden was named the NFL’s Offensive Lineman of the Year by the NFL Alumni in 2002. He received firstteam All-Pro honors six times and All-AFC honors nine times, and was a member of the NFL’s All-Decade Team of the 2000s. Ogden was inducted into the Baltimore Ravens Ring of Honor in 2008 and the College Football Hall of Fame in 2012.

In 2013, Ogden became the first longtime member of the Ravens franchise to be inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

Fans can visit the Pro Football Hall of Fame website for more information on the “Hometown Hall of Famers™” program, and can view event videos at www.youtube.com/allstate.

 

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