- The Washington Times - Monday, March 3, 2003


Seen and heard last night at MCI Center:
NO CHARPY With the Capitals' place in the standings one of flux during the last few days, Olie Kolzig's night off was pushed back. Some thought backup goalie Sebastien Charpentier would play against the Carolina Hurricanes, "but I looked at the work load last week Montreal, Buffalo and New Jersey and thought [Kolzig] could handle it," coach Bruce Cassidy said. "He's in a rhythm, and as long as he can handle it, I think we're OK."
'D' TAILS OFF The Caps were determined to get Robert Lang when the free agent season started last summer, mainly because of his offensive ability but also because he was a good two-way player. Cassidy has been less than pleased with the latter lately, and Lang has seen his ice time cut.
"We've talked, and I think his defensive intensity needs to pick up," Cassidy said. "He's playing with offensive minded wingers [Jaromir Jagr and Kip Miller], and it seems they either spend a lot of time in the other team's end or a lot of time in our end, and that's got to get a little bit better. You play with Jagr and Miller, you're going to get offensive opportunities, but at the same time you've got to be accountable in your own end. He's a two-way center, and we expect him to pick up the intensity in our end.
"After you've talked about it [with no improvement], at some point you've got to go to the next step, either take away a few of his minutes or other motivational tactics. I'd like to think he can get the job done on that line. If not, we'll go to Plan B."
NOTES Forwards Josh Green and Alex Henry and defenseman Rick Berry were the healthy scratches. Defenseman J.F. Fortin (back spasms) remained on injured reserve; he hasn't played a game in the NHL since Dec.30. … It was both Girl Scout night and Mardi Gras night. Nobody is quite sure how that odd couple was selected to be feted on the same evening. … A lot of the fans that said they wanted games to start at 6p.m. failed to take advantage. … Theories abound, but the 30 NHL team banners that graced the MCI Center ceiling are still unaccounted for. … The author of an item in this space yesterday suggesting that the trade that sent Jim Carey to Boston and Adam Oates to Washington happened a year ago had the day March 1 right but the year wrong. It was 1997.
Dave Fay

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