Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Meeting the New Guys: D.J. King

Today it was announced that D.J. King was traded the Washington Capitals, after signing a two-year extension with the St. Louis Blues. In return, the Blues received Stefan Della Rovere.

I will admit that I was never a big Della Rovere fan but I’m aware that Caps Nation seemed to consider him a favorite. And, for this particular trade, I personally think we ended up with the better deal. Della Rovere still has a lot of growing to do and is a bit of a question mark to me. We know what we’re getting with King: a fighter. Plain and simple. And, when it comes down to it, I’d rather have a “veteran” fighter than a prospect pest. But I do thank Delly for the only quality fight at Development Camp this year. So let’s meet the newest Capital!

Name: Dwayne “D.J.” King
Birthdate: January 27, 1984
Hometown: Meadow Lake, Saskatchewan
Drafted: 6th round, 191st overall by the St. Louis Blues
Height: 6’3
Weight: 230 lbs
Position: Left Wing
Shoots: Left

Immediate impression? We’re looking at a few injury problems as of late. He played one whole game in the 2008-2009 season before a shoulder injury took him out. He only played 22 games in the 2009-2010 season because of a finger injury. He’s also a big dude. 230 pounds coming at you in a fight? Not too shabby. And I’ll be the first to admit that he won a part of me over with the following quote (after being told the less than kind words Max Talbot had for Ovechkin):

"Wow. I guess that's not going to be happening too much longer."

And this, of course, raises the question about whether a Stanley Cup contender requires an enforcer. I, personally, say no, it’s not a requirement. Although you can’t argue with the benefit of having some muscle around.

It’s good to have some protection although he does not produce much of anything offensively. He could end up just being a frequent healthy scratch. His contract has him earning $625,000 in 2010-2011 and $675,000 during 2011-2012. All things considered, it could be much worse.

He got in five NHL fights last season. Not bad, considering he only played in twelve NHL games. To celebrate our new fighter, I bring you some of my favorite fights of his:

Versus Krys Barch:

Here he fights Cam Janssen (who later became his teammate) during the Memorial Cup.

Versus a billy goat, oh wait that’s Scott Parker.

In conclusion, welcome to the family, D.J. King. Matt Bradley’s papery skin is glad to have you around. And let me know your thoughts on our newest addition.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Meeting the New Guys: Jared DeMichiel

This entry is the first in the series where I will introduce you to and look into the newest Caps signings and draft picks. To open, we’re taking a look at goalie, Jared DeMichiel, who signed a one-year contract with the Hershey Bears this July.

And I’m incredibly pleased to announce that Jared DeMichiel himself was nice enough to do an interview with me. What a way to start this blog with a bang! But first, we’ll start off with some basic statistics about this RIT Tiger.

Name: Jared DeMichiel
Birthdate: April 16, 1985
Hometown: Avon, CT
College: Rochester Institute of Technology, #33.
Major: Business Management, double minor in Marketing and Communications
Height: 6’1
Weight: 190 lbs
Catches: left
-Finished the 2009-2010 with a
.724 winning percentage, a .921 save percentage, and 2.09 goals against average. He played 38 games and posted 6 shutouts.

(Picture courtesy of Southcreek Global Media)

A quick look into his RIT bio will show you that he has a wide range of musical tastes (from 50 Cent to Kenny Chesney) and that his favorite NHL team is the Hartford Whalers. In my exclusive interview with him, we find out all the work he’s been doing in
the off-season (hint: it’s a lot) and the interesting story behind his number.

How long have you been playing hockey for? Have you always been a goalie?

I started skating when I was around 4 years old. I started playing organized hockey as a forward when I was 7 and when I was 10 I decided to switch to goalie for Pee Wees.

What kind of training and conditioning have you been doing in the off-season?

This off-season I've been training with some NHL, AHL, ECHL, and D-1 college hockey players in Rochester. We lift 4 days a week and skate arou
nd 3-5 times a week. We start every morning with a skate at 7am. After the skate we go outside and do some speed, quick feet, and cardio work on the track. When we are done on the track we head in to the weight room and lift weights for over an hour. We rotate the days that we lift upper body and lower body. When we are done lifting the weights we finish with some core and medicine ball exercises. I'll do some stretching for around 20-30 minutes when we are done. I'm focusing on getting a strong and explosive lower body and core; at the same time, I'm trying to gain some strength in my upper body to gain some weight. On my days off I'll do some racquetball to work on hand and eye coordination. Golf is also great for days off from lifting!

What are your personal goals for the upcoming season?

First off, I would like to win as many games as possible and obtain a championship whether it's with Hershey or South Carolina. Secondly, I would like to continue to get better between the pipes and work as hard as possible to work my way up the Capitals organization. Lastly, I want to have as much fun as possible! I love playing hockey and if I'm working hard and having fun this should lead to success on the ice.

Do you pattern your game after any goalie?

I do not pattern my game after any particular goalie, but I enjoy watching Ryan Miller play. I like how he is athletic, but technically sound at the same time. He aggressively challenges when needed and he also stays deep in his net depending on his read of the play. He is efficient using his stick and he plays the puck adequately to help his team.

Do you know what equipment you will be using this upcoming season?

As of right now I am not sure of what gear I will be wearing next season. I'm leaning towards wearing Reebok gear because that's what I wore the past two seasons at RIT. I'm thinking of getting a split paint job on my mask of Hershey and South Carolina. If anyone has cool ideas for a paint job, I am all ears!

Favorite memory at RIT?

Favorite memory at RIT was this past season when we made our run to the Frozen Four. It was a great experience for all of the players and the entire school.

You played with current Hershey Bear, Steve Pinizzotto in 2006-2007. What do you remember from playing with him?

I remember Pinner being a great player for RIT. He was the total package for us in 06-07. Pinner did a great job getting points and making those around him better. He scored clutch goals, but also made some great passes when needed. Pinner pla
yed tough every game as he would take the body consistently which set the tone for the game and gave our team energy. Pinner and I have stayed close over the years and I look forward to seeing him at the Caps camp in September!

Cameron Burt was at the Capitals development camp a week ago. Have you two been in contact about possibly playing for the same organization?

Cam and I played 1 year of junior together and we were roommates this past season so we are pretty tight. I was extremely excited for him when he told me he was going to the Cap prospect camp. I texted him during the camp to see how thin
gs were going and he seemed very happy with his play. We have been lifting together all summer and it would be a great experience if he was going to sign with the same organization as me. Hopefully Cam continues to work hard and the Caps sign him to a nice contract.

Any significance behind your number?

Former NHL player Jim McKenzie who won the Stanley Cup with the New Jersey Devils
(editor’s note: McKenzie also played for the Caps in 1999-2000) is a close family friend of mine and he always wore 33. I wear the number to pay respect to him as he has been a great role model to me. I also like the number because Larry Bird used to rock the 33!

If you make the team in Hershey, do you have any plans on visiting Chocolate World, the Hershey's chocolate tour?

I for sure want to check out Chocolate World and everything that Hershey has to offer. I'm extremely excited to be a part of a great organization and I plan on making the most of my situation. I cannot wait to get to Hershey and see the city!

You can also get to know DeMichiel a little better through these videos.

First a highlight reel (including a couple flashy glove saves). He has a fun, energetic goaltending style. A very interesting video.

Join SportsZone as they follow DeMichiel around for a day. He tells us that he’s a big Superman fan and a big Ryan Miller fan (I thought they were the same person…). Techno is his preferred pre-game jam.

And finally, I love goalie tricks and this is no exception. I think anyone would love watching this:

DeMichiel has been invited to Caps training camp and I’m very excited to see more from this new member of our team. At RIT, he got better with every year and I look forward to seeing him in action. He will be competing against the likes of Braden Holtby and Dany Sabourin for the job in Hershey. Again, a
huge thank you to Jared for helping me out with this post.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Getting started - Welcome to Flashy Glove Save

So you've stumbled upon my blog, huh? I guess I should introduce myself then.

My name is Kathryn: senior in college, current baseball intern, amateur photographer, rabid hockey fan. My team is the Washington Capitals. This includes their little brothers, the Hershey Bears and the South Carolina Stingrays. I became a hockey fan in high school when I had friends on the team. My first Capitals game was in March of 2007 (Semin got a hat trick). While this makes me a newer fan, I'm not just a casual fan. I think a glimpse into any aspect of my life would tell you that.

So what will you find here? Well, most likely my thoughts, opinions, rants, ravings, finds, etc involving hockey players. I won't lie, it will be mostly Caps-centric here but you'll also find posts about other teams and players, NHL or not. As I mentioned above, I love taking pictures (whether they're good or not) so I will probably be posting links to my photos here from time to time.

As my blog name may suggest, I'm a goalie fan. Or an admirer, if you will. Olie Kolzig was my first hockey love. You never forget your first love, right? ;) I've never been a goalie (well, I was in bantam soccer...) and I won't pretend to be incredibly knowledgeable about the position, but you will find a lot of goalie love here.

If you enjoy my blog, that makes me ridiculously happy. And if you have any suggestions for posts or what to hear about a player or something, let me know. I'm very open to ideas. Stick around, okay? It's going to be a fun ride.