Countdown to Capitals Rookie Camp: 60-69

We’ve made it this far… only 7 days until the start of Rookie Camp. Hockey really is almost here again! Continuing with our countdown of our choices for the most prolific sweater number by the tens, today we examine 60-69 – and proclaim the most prolific of the lot. Digit selection will be based upon a plethora of qualities including skill, significance to the club, food preference at an all-you-can eat buffet, nostalgia, and any other traits we deem fit.

In keeping with decade-themed musical jumps – “Come on, baby! Let’s do the twist make the jump!”

The 60’s… right off the bat we can eliminate 61, 65, and 67 since they’ve never been worn in the Capitals organization. One could probably eliminate number 63 since it’s been worn for a total of 7 games (Owen Fussey 4 games from 2003-2004 and Andrew Gordon 3 games from 2008-2010); number 64 (worn by Roman Tvrdon for 9 games in 2004); and number 69 (Mel Angelstad sported 69 for 9 games in the 03-04 season). -and a total of 24 games a proficient number does not make.

That leaves us with two numbers – 60 and 68. I’d be an idiot to call myself a Caps fan and allow Jaromir Jagr and #68 come out on top, so I’m going with #60 – Jose Theodore.

On July 1, 2008 Theodore signed a two year, $9 million dollar contract with the Caps. The objective was to have him take the reigns in the crease until the wealth of young goaltending prospects were ready for full-time roles in the big leagues. Now that those two years are up and I look back on his career, he did so much more than what was asked of him both on and off the ice. In his first season as a Cap, Theodore produced a record of 32-17-5. His playoff performance, however, was less than desirable, and he was pulled after playing only 2 games. A year later, in the 2009-2010 season, Theodore saw less ice time but still put up strong numbers going 30-7-7. He was again benched after only 2 playoff games when Coach Boudreau again opted to go with Varlamov.

Let’s face it, back to back 30+ win seasons is no small accomplishment. Add in the incredibly heart-wrenching off-ice family issues Theodore was going through and consider the professional front he kept up and he’s a star in my book. Then, we saw such a negative experience inspire him to give back to a hospital that gave his family so much. “Saves for Kids” was Theo’s brainchild, and a perfect example of his selflessness and philanthropic nature (which was apparently noticed by others as he is the current Masterson-trophy-holder).

Other 60′s:

63: Owen Fussey (2003-04), Andrew Gordon (2008-2010)
64: Roman Tvrdon (2004)
66: Milan Novy (1982-83)
68: Jaromir Jagr (2001-04)
69: Mel Angelstad (2004)

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