Washington Capitals GM Reveals Trade Deadline Strategy

The Washington Capitals have lost three games in a row and are 4-6-0 in their last 10 games. The panic button is now within reach as general manager Brian MacLellan is starting to get worried about his team. 

Their latest slump has certainly turned the tide on strategy as MacLellan recently commented on what to expect from his hockey club before the March 21 trade deadline:

I don't know that we're going to be as aggressive as we've been in the past. Sometimes, just to add depth pieces, we might overpay a little bit because we felt, 'We have a good team, we're gonna go a long way, and we just need players. I don't know that we're in that mode, but we'd still like to try and improve the team. In the beginning of the year, I would say (we were) a legit contender. There's probably three, four teams that are at the next level, but we're not next level. (We were) at the high end of that next level of teams. Now, I'd say we're at the low level of that next level of teams. We need to improve. We need to get back to where we were.

One of the areas of focus continues to be the team's goaltending duo of Ilya Samsonov and Vitek Vanecek and the sense is the Caps are open to making a move in their crease. MacLellan had this to say when asked about his team's goaltending: 

The concerning thing for me is sometimes the goals, the timing of the goals, game-situation goals that some veteran guys would tighten it up and make that save. It's not the overall save percentage, it's when and how the goals happen. We called around earlier. The difficult situation, I think, is it's gotta be an obvious upgrade for us for it to make sense, or otherwise, we go with our guys. Is this going to get us over a hump on the goaltending side? I don't know that there's that many guys out there that are that quality. There might be one or two.

Two names linked to the team include Marc-Andre Fleury and Braden Holtby but at this point Fleury continues to say no to any trade and Holtby is a long shot to return to Washington. Look for MacLellan and the Capitals to continue to work the phones as they try to find a solution to getting the team back on track from their crease out.

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