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For Dale Hunter, it’s a work in progress getting Caps to rebound

Dec 2, 2011, 8:49 AM EDT

Alex Ovechkin, Dale Hunter Getty Images

They never said it was going to be easy in Washington. For Dale Hunter, taking over a team that had lost its way is proving to be bumpy right off the bat.

Last night’s 2-1 loss to the Penguins was especially hard as the Penguins essentially played keep-away with the puck over the final five minutes while the Caps spent all their energy chasing them around. As the Caps players said to’s Chuck Gormley, the results will come but they won’t be instantaneous.

Hunter says the fixes are coming in their new system.

“They are learning a new system but we have to be a little more quicker in our own end. We’re spending too much time and it wears down our offense,” Hunter said.

The offense is worn out to the point of generating just 36 shots in two games under Hunter. The Caps will get things right under Hunter come hell or high water, but for now it’s all about learning on the fly. It might hurt to watch now but don’t bank on the Caps staying in a funk for too much longer.

  1. icelovinbrotha215 - Dec 2, 2011 at 10:47 AM

    He needs to let Ovi be Ovi. Its no coincidence that Ovi’s shots and production is done. When he is good, he is a shot-oholic. Let him go and be the player of 2-3 years ago.

    • hague507 - Dec 2, 2011 at 2:03 PM

      Ovie’s shots are down because his shots are not getting to the net. Defensemen are blocking them and he has been high or wide on many. Last night was a perfect example of that. He fired off a number of attempts but only 1 SOG.

      • kantnockdahustle89 - Dec 2, 2011 at 4:48 PM

        Actually he had at least two really pretty passes in the game that should have resulted in a goal at least. The guy has been making some great passes as of late but his team cant cash them in. Sure he still shoots but he is also using all the attention he gets to set up others. Its kind of an odd situation on what to do.

  2. govtminion - Dec 2, 2011 at 10:49 AM

    If the new system involves 18 shots a game, let me know so I can stop planning on watching the games. What is it about Boudreau and now Hunter that makes them think the Capitals current build is designed to play defensive-oriented hockey? They held the Pens to two goals, great- and lost.

    This used to be a fun team to watch, I could put on CSN and laugh my ass off at the number of goals scored- for and against- in a Caps game. Now the style is dull, the players obviously could care less, and the losses are piling up- and while it’s only been two games, Hunter seems pretty content to keep going in this dead-end direction. It’s sad.

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