One of the changes Dale Hunter made when he replaced Bruce Boudreau behind the Capitals bench was implementing a man-on-man approach to defense in an effort to limit the odd-man rushes against while allowing the team to become more opportunistic off the transition. So far, it hasn't worked out that way.
Looking at this season, goals-for off turnovers have upticked slightly, but so have goals-against with Hunter as coach.
As a group, there have been more players involved in goals off turnovers under Hunter than under Boudreau. The most opportunistic of the Capitals has been Troy Brouwer, who has garnered four goals within a few seconds of a turnover, three of those coming with Hunter as coach.
On the defensive side, there is one player who looks to be struggling under the new system: John Carlson.
Carlson, who played one season under Hunter with the OHL’s London Knights, has been on the ice for more than half of the goals against that have come off of turnovers this season, and that includes a hefty 63 percent of the ones since Hunter took over. Roman Hamrlik, however, has gone the other way: He was on the ice for half of the goals against via turnovers under Boudreau; now he has been on the ice for just 21 percent under Hunter.
There is never a good time to play poorly during an NHL season — especially when you are fighting to make the playoffs. But that's exactly what is happening in Washington, and if the Capitals don't find a way to limit the turnovers they will find themselves on the outside of the playoff picture in April.