- The Washington Times - Friday, June 14, 2002

DETROIT But for a few hundred miles, Detroit's Scotty Bowman who has more regular-season and playoff victories than any other NHL coach might have become general manager and coach of the Washington Capitals.

Bowman, 68, said yesterday that he interviewed for the job after walking away from the Montreal Canadiens following the 1978-79 season but passed because he wanted to be closer to the border.

"I was interviewed by David Osnos and Abe Pollin," said Bowman, before announcing his retirement last night. "They gave me an offer, but I wanted to stay near Canada if I could. They offered me 10 percent of the team, I turned it down, so I wasn't a very good businessman. I was going to be [general] manager-coach."

Pollin was the majority owner of the team at the time and Osnos, the Caps' legal counsel and alternate governor, was on the board of directors.

Bowman had just won four Stanley Cups in a row with the Canadiens and five overall. There had been a management shakeup a season earlier, and Bowman sought greener pastures. He said he was interviewed by Toronto and Buffalo, as well as Washington, and picked Buffalo to continue his illustrious career.

At the time, the Caps had never made the playoffs and wouldn't for another three seasons. Danny Belisle, now Detroit's pro scout, was the coach and Max McNab, now retired, was general manager.

Two views of pressure.

Brendan Shanahan, Detroit: "There has been pressure on this team all year long, and we have all kind of shouldered it equally. It has been that way with each round. It's that way today."

Aaron Ward, Carolina: "Pressure? There's no pressure around here. All we're doing is playing for our lives."

Fischer out

Detroit played Game 5 last night without defenseman Jiri Fischer, suspended for one game for cross checking Carolina's Tommy Westlund across the mouth in the third period Tuesday night. There was never any doubt it was an infraction deserving of a penalty, but the two referees on the ice failed to see it and none was called.

Colin Campbell, the NHL's discipline czar, did see it and handed down the suspension. The seriousness with which he viewed the incident can be cited by the fact Fischer is the first player ever suspended for a game in the finals as a result of an incident in the finals. Most infractions demanding a suspension are carried over to the next season.

Searching for Bobby

Yesterday's surprising developments in New Jersey the firing of Kevin Constantine as coach and the hiring of Pat Burns left a few questions unanswered. One is, what became of Bobby Carpenter, former Washington first-round pick? Carpenter ended his career with the Devils and has been employed by New Jersey since he retired.

Last season he was coach of the team's American Hockey League affiliate in Albany, N.Y., and was widely viewed as future NHL coaching material, especially with Lou Lamoriello in charge. Lamoriello tried unsuccessfully to recruit Carpenter for Providence College before the player decided to skip college and go straight to the pros.

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