Jose, No Way

1 game in, and the Caps have a goalie controversy

Jose Theodore is not the reason the Caps lost game 1 to the Rangers.

But let's put it this way.  Had he switched places with Lundqvist, Ovechkin might've scored ten goals, and the bulb in the red light might've burned out.

So now Bruce Boudreau has a choice.  Does he go with No-Way Jose or turn to Simeon VarlamovHe's made his decision, but he's not telling anyone, not even the goalies themselves.

Gabby's post-game comments indicated the thought of yanking Jose crossed his mind, even if only to dismiss it, saying "you never want to look like you're panicking. And that's how that would have looked to me."

Mid-game, it'd be a panic move.  But for game 2?  That might be something else entirely.

But do the Caps really want to put the weight of their Cup run on a rookie Russian?

Boudreau doesn't seem to think it'd be a problem.  He said that Simeon  "has played in the [KHL] and he's played in the world championships in front of big crowds. So it's not like he's going to be a starstruck young guy if we went with that decision."

That doesn't bode well for Jose.

But should the Caps be worried?  Theodore has a pretty strong track record of rebounding after crappy games, as Japers' Rink notes.

"Since December 23, Theodore is 6-1-0 with a 2.15 goals against average and a .926 save percentage in the games immediately following games in which he allowed four goals or more (and those six wins include tough opponents like Boston on the road and the Pens both at home and away)."

If Boudreau has faith in that, then Jose's the choice.  Playing the rookie over him could shake Theodore's confidence.  If Boudreau's going to make the switch, he has to be confident that Varlamov is his man for the next month.

It's a tough decision either way.  And the impact couldn't possibly be larger.

Chris Needham used to write Capitol Punishment.  He wonders if Don Beaupre is still in game shape.

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