The Wizards and the Capitals are on completely different ends of the success spectrum. The Caps were the best team in the NHL last regular season, while the Wizards stumbled to a record well below .500 and the first pick in the draft. Ted Leonsis is the majority owner of these teams, and will spend a very busy summer tweaking the rosters of both.
I wouldn't have been surprised if Leonsis had two different plans for his two different franchises; one aimed at building a team, the other at putting one over the top. But to his credit, Leonsis has remained remarkably consistent in his approach, which is an excellent sign that neither team is panicking, rather just keeping a course that the organization knows will work. Quotes after the jump.
Last week, Leonsis wrote on his blog that the team would be quiet in free agency, and go about building at a more measured and deliberate pace. On Tuesday, he echoed the reasoning in those comments, this time about the Caps.
There is a hard cap. There is arbitration. There are players we have that will come off of contracts, and need to be rewarded in out years. This is a small needle to thread. Some teams will be very happy. Some teams won’t be. We know we still have work to do to improve. The off season isn’t over yet.
Before I saw that he had tagged the article with NHL, I was sure he was talking about the Wizards again. That approach helped build the Caps to what they are today, so I think it can help establish the Wizards. It remains to be seen if it is enough to push a team over the top.