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McPhee: Caps will match any Alzner, Johansson offer sheet; ‘not interested’ in trading Neuvirth

Jun 24, 2013, 1:08 PM EDT

George McPhee Getty Images

It appears George McPhee will hold onto all his young talent.

On Monday, the Washington GM said he would match any offer sheet made to his restricted free agents — forward Marcus Johansson and defenseman Karl Alzner — and said he had “no interest” in trading goalie Michal Neuvirth.

Johansson, 22, had a solid 2013 campaign in which he often played on a line with Alex Ovechkin and Nicklas Backstrom, scoring 6G-16A-22PTS in 34 games. He’s in the final season of a three-year, $2.7 million deal.

Alzner, 24, set a career-high for average time on ice per game (20:57), upping it to 22:18 in the playoffs. The former No. 5 overall pick finished second on the team in blocked shots last year (85), fourth among all defensemen in hits (45) and is in the final year of a two-year, $2.57 million deal.

Finally, there’s Neuvirth.

He spent 2013 in the same position he spent the 2011-12 playoffs — in a backup role behind Braden Holtby.

Neuvirth, 25, only played in 13 games to Holtby’s 36, and didn’t get a sniff in the postseason as Holtby was the goalie of record in all of Washington’s seven opening-round games against the Rangers.

What’s confusing is that, in April, Neuvirth signed a two-year, $5 million extension with the Caps — making him the higher paid goalie.

Holtby signed a modest two-year, $3.7 million extension back in February.

For McPhee, there’s no confusion. He feels those deals give Washington what he wants — solid goaltending depth.

“We’re not interested in trading [Neuvirth], McPhee explained. “Why not have as many good [goalies] as we can?”

Update: McPhee also announced that video coach Blaine Forsythe had been promoted to assistant coach, replacing Tim Hunter.

  1. esracerx46 - Jun 24, 2013 at 1:15 PM

    Does GMGM realize a team might drive up the price on either player knowing he’s gonna match?

    • ibieiniid - Jun 24, 2013 at 1:18 PM

      that’s risky though. he could just be saying that to keep them from even trying. they put a big offer sheet and win the player…. boom. stuck with an overpaid player. GMs don’t play games like that with that much of somebody else’s money.

      • hockey412 - Jun 24, 2013 at 1:21 PM

        Unless you are Holmgren.

      • hockey412 - Jun 24, 2013 at 1:22 PM

        And he’s still out there…lurking…

      • ibieiniid - Jun 24, 2013 at 1:22 PM

        low blow buddy, low blow.

      • ibieiniid - Jun 24, 2013 at 2:03 PM

        newsflash! BREAKING! Harry Zolnierczyk (sp)….. now a Penguin

      • esracerx46 - Jun 24, 2013 at 2:33 PM

        Or if you’re Jay Feaster.

      • atwatercrushesokoye - Jun 24, 2013 at 5:07 PM

        I’m sure Kevin Lowe will have MacTavish working on an offer sheet, remember his brilliance in overpaying Dustin Penner after he swung and missed on an offer sheet to Vanek.

  2. ibieiniid - Jun 24, 2013 at 1:20 PM

    obviously not a done deal, but I’d be glad to see Alzner stay in DC. he’s my favorite Caps d-man, and one of the only really effective ones defensively. as far as Neuvy, meh.

  3. subliminalnoize - Jun 24, 2013 at 1:23 PM

    All I know is he needs to lock up Alzner.

  4. leiterfelixleiter - Jun 24, 2013 at 1:29 PM

    I’d offer both Alzner and Johansson a 7-year, $50 million deal then. Let the Capitals match them and suck ass for the next 10 years as a result.

    • dueman - Jun 24, 2013 at 2:12 PM

      Ya, and then he’d let you have them, and you’d be on the hook for 4-1st’s, 2-2nd’s, and 2-3rd round draft picks, and a 14.25 million dollar cap hit for 2 young players that should be getting 4-5 million combined ( Johansson, projected 1.2/1.4 million, and Alzner, projected 3.3/3.5 million per ) for the next seven years. In other words you can forget about ever becoming a General Manager. So stick to your paper route, as it will probably be the best job you’ll ever have. Have a nice day! :)

    • jpelle82 - Jun 24, 2013 at 4:18 PM

      yeah…because gm’s always do exactly what they say in the media leading up to the draft/free agency

  5. kaptaanamerica - Jun 24, 2013 at 6:31 PM

    he’s letting teams know the Caps are NOT like those idiots in Colorado who couldn’t get a deal done, and were forced to match when it looked like ownership was being stingy. The league knows Ted Leonsis won’t get pushed around.

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