There are times when ESPN takes a few minutes away from its never-ending NFL and NBA coverage to briefly talk about hockey. Unfortunately, those moments always seem to come at the low points for the Washington Capitals. That was again the case following Washington's Game 7 loss to the Pittsburgh Penguins on Wednesday.
ESPN anchor and Maryland native Scott Van Pelt opened his show saying “I am sick and tired…sick and freakin’ tired of this same routine from the Caps.”
Van Pelt went on to say, “The excitement and optimism of the day drowned out by yet another hard dose of reality delivered from the needle of the Pittsburgh Penguins. … It’s yet another verse of the same never-ending song that has Capitals fans wondering if it will ever have a different ending. The only thing that feels like it’s ending is this team as it’s constructed.”
NHL analyst Barry Melrose also made the rounds on ESPN to give his take and he expressed his feeling that the Caps were in need of major changes.
“This team can’t win,” Melrose said. “They’ve just proven it over and over and over again. Something’s wrong. Something’s lacking in that dressing room. … They’ve got to look seriously at making some major overhauls to that lineup.”
On Van Pelt’s show, Melrose said he thought it was time for the Caps to explore trading Ovechkin arguing it would be good for both the team and the player to part ways.
“The bottom line is Alex Ovechkin’s the best player on the team, he’s the highest paid player on the team, he’s the captain of the team and Alex isn’t getting the job done.”
"You put Crosby and Ovechkin on different teams, I bet we’re looking at the Washington Capitals now sitting there with a couple Stanley Cups," Melrose said.
Wednesday was certainly a disappointing end to the season, but there will still be plenty of suspense this offseason for a Caps team seemingly in need of major changes.
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