Patience is a Virtue

Posted by Dave Nichols | Friday, April 30, 2010 | , , | 5 comments »

I had a much longer column partially written, about practicing patience and taking to task everyone that seems so infatuated with blowing up the Caps for failing to close out Montreal after being up three games to one.

But instead of preaching, I'll give a simple history lesson.

It took Glen Sather, Wayne Gretzky, and his talented teammates four playoff seasons with the Edmonton Oilers before they won the Stanley Cup.  They then won the thing five times in seven years, including the last when the Great One had moved on.

It took Scotty Bowman, Steve Yzerman and the Detroit Red Wings three playoff seasons working together, but then won the Cup three times in six seasons.

It took Al Arbour, Bryan Trottier and Mike Bossy five seasons together before they won their first Cup, then they went on to win four years in a row.

All had heartbreaking playoff exits before being able to drink from the Cup.

Bruce Boudreau, Alex Ovechkin and Nicklas Backstrom have been together for three playoff seasons.

History tells us we should be patient.

Of the Capitals top nine scorers this season, seven were 26 years old or younger. 

In what should be their top four defensemen next season, the oldest will be 25 years old.

Their two top goaltenders next season will both be 22 year old.

The window isn't closing.  It's barely cracked open.

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From Sergei Federov's interview with Puck Daddy:
"The thing is that the team is gaining experience right now. I know that good teams with good players 10 or 15 years ago were not winning everything right away. Right now the most important thing is to leave the team and players alone, and to calmly get ready for the next season. There are no revolutions needed."

5 comments

  1. GO // April 30, 2010 at 11:12 AM  

    The difference between those Isles and Oilers teams is they got better every playoff year, progressing, gelling and getting better. This team, in regard to the postseason, is regressing.

    McPhee needs to get some real, complete hockey players onto this team that come to play every night. They need two things: a tough, top notch defensive defensemen, and a top notch, two-way forward. The fact of the matter is they dont need Green. Sure hes an offensive force, but this team doesnt need more offense. Further, hes proved himself to be a total playoff and defensive liability. He should be traded for a Dustin Brown-type forward. Semin also needs to go (think thats been his plan all along anyway).

  2. Dave Nichols // April 30, 2010 at 11:25 AM  

    eh, if you go back and look, all three (DET, EDM, NYI) kind of bounced around in playoffs before winning.

    I don't think moving Green is the right idea. He's a unique player in this league. he's also just 24.

  3. Andrzej // April 30, 2010 at 1:29 PM  

    I think you're forgetting something: Boudreau will never be an Al Albour and Ovechkin will never be a Mark Messier. The teams you mentioned played as a collective. The Caps are still a show of great individual talents. Your statistics are worthless unless you'll hire a coach who will know how to mold this talent into one collective.

  4. Andrzej // April 30, 2010 at 1:30 PM  

    I think you're forgetting something: Boudreau will never be an Al Albour and Ovechkin will never be a Mark Messier. The teams you mentioned played as a collective. The Caps are still a show of great individual talents. Your statistics are worthless unless you'll hire a coach who will know how to mold this talent into one collective.

  5. Dave Nichols // April 30, 2010 at 2:40 PM  

    Andrzej, Al Arbour and Mark Messier were not Al Arbour and Mark Messier until they became Al Arbour and Mark Messier.

    I hope you get my meaning.

    Patience.