Thursday, October 05, 2006

Alex and "The Hump"

I was reading Tarik El-Bashir's column on the Caps in this morning's Washington Post in which he wrote about Alex Ovechkin being one piece of the puzzle. Hockey being what it is, even the best of skaters play not much more than a third of any game. And that's the trouble with the Caps. Once you get past Ovechkin, there isn't anyone who can be called a dominant player.

The kid needs help.

So, when is it coming, George? Well, here's the money quote . . .

"You have to get to the hump before you can get over it . . . We'll add the right pieces at the right time. We'll have to see when that time comes, whether it's late this season or early next season."

As a fan, that tells me that McPhee is putting down a marker. The time is coming, this year or next, when the rebuild is going to be at a point where adding free agents or securing other assets -- not prospects or draft picks -- in trade is going to arrive. The timing is important, since next year Ovechkin will be in the last year of his entry deal, and Olaf Kolzig will be another year older.

Fans have been patient, and even though they don't write the checks for talent, they do for tickets. They aren't going to want to hear, "wait, be patient," forever. The time is coming.

Fans will be watching.

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