Do the Caps need another puck mover?

Going into this trade deadline, the general consensus is that the Capitals biggest need is a second line center. However, one big problem with the team right now is that the powerplay has been just awful and the offense can’t seem to get the wheels clicking. It’s seemed to have magnified the last few games with Mike Green out. Tom Poti missing more games than he’s played also hasn’t helped either. It makes you wonder if the Caps should look for a puck-moving defenseman this deadline. Green will probably be back soon but Poti is a definite question mark.

Yesterday against Buffalo, the Caps had 5 powerplays and approximately 7:31 of powerplay time. Alex Ovechkin was on ice for all 7:31 and John Carlson was on for 7:24 of it. If that doesn’t show that we might need to look for another puck mover or someone to play the point on the powerplay then I don’t know what does. Green and Carlson can obviously rotate when the former is healthy but someone definitely needs to take the burden off of Ovechkin at the other point position. I’ve been criticizing Boudreau all year for mismanaging players ice time on the powerplay but I think his hands are kind of tied in this situation. Who else do we have to play the point right now?

Karl Alzner, Scott Hannan, Jeff Schultz and John Erskine all don’t have much of an offensive upside and rarely shoot the puck. Schultz has only 22 shots on goal for the entire season. That and watching zone entries from these four isn’t a pretty thing and its had a huge effect on our offense.

The Caps have always been a team that “needed” a shutdown defenseman in past years but this season, we have four very capable defensive defensemen and three with an offensive upside and two of them are hurt. I suggested that Kurtis Foster would be someone who we could trade for in an earlier post and it’s looking like that might not be a bad idea. He has a huge shot from the point and could definitely boost our powerplay a little bit. The idea is definitely worth throwing around a bit.  McPhee might be looking for bigger fish in the pond, though so we’ll see what happens.

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