Number one is open?

So, the Stanley Cup finals are going on right now, between my two least favorite teams in the league. And frankly, I can't decide which of them I like less. I'm still trying to figure out a way in which both teams can lose.

All of which is a roundabout way of saying that I couldn't possibly care less about who wins the Cup this year.

But the Post was talking about the Caps prospects this morning, and there were a couple of interesting tidbits.

The first was saying that management has told all three likely Caps goalies for next season (Varlamov, Neuvirth, and Theodore) that the number one spot is open for next year. If that's true, then they haven't been paying attention at all.

Barring serious injury, Varlamov should have the top spot locked up. And ideally, the Caps would find a taker for Theodore. For something good, you know; maybe a bag of pucks. Ok, that's a bit mean; Theodore isn't that bad. Actually, he did show flashes of brilliance from time to time last year, but man, was he frustrating.

Frankly, I don't see any way around Varlamov as primary, with Theodore backing him up. Unfortunately, that leaves Neuvirth stuck in Hershey, which is certainly unjust. I wonder if it would be better for all involved to see about trading him for a very good defenseman or center. While Neuvirth has done everything asked of him, I just can't see them sitting Theodore and his $4.5M salary on the bench for the whole season.

I guess we'll see.

The other interesting tidbit was about Giroux. My first experience seeing him was in the playoffs, and he looked pretty good. And he seems to have torn up the AHL last season, which is pretty cool. But it's pretty hard to get excited about a 27-year-old player who's played less than half a season at the NHL level.

I don't really know about aging trends in hockey, although I doubt they're hugely different than in baseball. And in baseball, a player almost invariably reaches their peak at twenty-seven or -eight. So it's pretty tough to call someone that old even a prospect, let alone a likely difference-maker for your team. Yes, once every few decades you might find someone like Ryan Howard, but that's really, really rare. (And, btw, Ryan Howard should not have been nearly that close to winning the MVP last year. He wasn't even the best player on his own team, let alone in the league.)

So, we'll see what happens. I'm more interested in John Carlson; a 19-year-old who's even borderline NHL-ready is very exciting. Hopefully, he'll stay healthy, and we'll hear a lot more about him next year.

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