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Now That The Draft Is Over June 27, 2010

Posted by CapitalSpirit in Uncategorized.
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*yawn*

I need some Pepsi Max after that one. No trades and five picks for the Caps is a slow news day. I remember a few years ago when the Caps brought ten picks in to the draft, drafted ten players, and STILL parlayed it into ten picks for the next year’s draft. And since the Caps make the draft their bread and butter, it would seem that they didn’t think there was much worth selecting this year.

I got into a bit of a discussion with the folks from Japer’s Rink about that late in the first round. And I mean LATE–that was supposed to go three hours, and it ran four. The NBA draft was earlier this week, and a lot of DC media were all over the Wizards’ role in this year’s draft. A lot of the same writers then didn’t have that much to say Friday night when the warriors of winter enlisted their newest recruits.

Look, as a hockey fan, I don’t like that, either. And shame on any reporter who tweets like a canary during the NBA draft, says they’ll do the same for the NHL draft, and then clams up.

But really, we’re talking two different stories here. The Wizards, with the first overall pick, drafted an almost instant star player who’s likely to be the face of the franchise for a very long time. I don’t think it’s too early to put John Wall in the same sentence with John Stockton. I mean, hey, I just did it, right?

Meanwhile, the Capitals, with the 26th pick, drafted a Russian center who’s more than likely going to be second-line. Yes, Kuznetsov is good, and no disrespect intended with any of this. I just think Nicklas Backstrom isn’t going anywhere anytime soon.

So, the Wizards draft first and pick an immediate impact player who could easily be the starting 1 on Opening Night. The Caps draft late in a snoozer of a first round, and select a remarkable 1A center who may or may not be on the opening night roster.

So even if there was a demonstrable enthusiasm gap among the DC sports media regarding the NBA and NHL drafts, I’m not entirely surprised. Wall is going to very quickly turn into the face of the Wizards, assuming he stays out of trouble and healthy. Kuznetsov? We’ll have to wait and see for him. He’s a terrific player, absolutely, but he’s not likely to be for the Caps what Wall is almost certain to be for the Wizards.

Did the DC media give the NHL draft short shrift after going, well, wall to Wall on the NBA draft? In a way, does it really matter all that much? You won’t know how well you did, or did not do, in a draft until the player’s career has developed. It would be hugely ironic–and perhaps proof of some higher sense of humor–if Kuznetsov were to end up starring, while Wall were to disappoint. But we can’t know that right now. All we can know is where these two men stand as they begin their careers. And Wall arguably stands a bit higher than Kuznetsov on draft night.

So, yes, I would have liked to see the DC media give the Caps a little more ink and a few more pixels on draft night. And yes, I think any writer who promises equal coverage should keep their word. But in the larger scheme of things, who got how much coverage on draft night shouldn’t be so scandalous that it makes a Caps fan’s unmentionables resemble a tricolor rotini salad.

Free agency begins next week. I suspect there will be much more to discuss then.

Meanwhile, for those who haven’t seen it yet–shameless cross promotion–I have two of the three charts for 2010-2011 all set up. The project was the Games Remaining chart, which took several hours to complete. That one is also color-coded by series balance, and there may be some discussion-worthy information I’ve got on there. For instance, are you aware that the only divisional season series which breaks 3-3 is Caps-Bolts? Or that Buffalo has perhaps the quirkiest division schedule in the entire NHL this season? Or that Colorado plays the most 2-2 in-conference series, with 6? Or that Pittsburgh plays a total of four 2-2 conference series, all against the Northeast? I started that chart as a way of helping me keep up to speed with tie breaks down the stretch, but some of what came out of it is quirky enough in its own right.

Anyway, my stomach has been grumbling madly ever since I typed “tricolor rotini salad,” so I’m going to wrap this one up.

CAPITAL SPIRIT
WAKE ME UP WHEN SEPTEMBER ENDS

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