The Washington Post - 24.10.2019

(Nancy Kaufman) #1

T H U R S D A Y , O C T O B E R  2 4,  2 0 1 9 .  T H E  W A S H I N G T O N  P O S T EZ SU D3

won’t be a “four-to-six-week inju-
ry. We’re hoping he’s going to be
back significantly sooner than
The right winger from Finland
is tied with Nathan MacKinnon
for most points on the team this
season. Both have five goals and
seven assists.
Rantanen, who turns 23 next
week, agreed to terms on a six-
year, $55.5 million contract just
before the start of the season.
placed defenseman Connor Mur-
phy on long-term injured reserve.
Murphy hurt his groin Tuesday
night in a 2-1 shootout loss to the
Vegas Golden Knights. He has no
points in six games this season.
The Blackhawks also recalled
defenseman Dennis Gilbert from
the minors Wednesday. Gilbert, a
third-round pick in the 2015
draft, played in Chicago’s season-
opening loss to Philadelphia on
Oct. 4.

iecki tied it at 3:15 and Pageau
made it a two-goal game with a
shorthanded goal at 5:27. Duclair
scored late in the second and
added an empty-netter in the
Earlier in the day, the Senators
placed Colin White and Artem
Anisomov on injured reserve.
White will miss three to five
weeks with a sore hip flexor, and
Anisimov is expected to be out up
to two weeks with a lower-body

Colorado’s Rantanen ailing
Colorado Avalanche forward
Mikko Rantanen is week to week
with a lower-body injury.
The 2019 all-star caught an
edge in the ice and awkwardly
twisted his left skate during the
second period of Monday night’s
loss in St. Louis. He didn’t return.
Avalanche Coach Jared Bednar
said Wednesday after practice
that he’s optimistic Rantanen


Anthony Duclair scored twice,
and the Ottawa Senators beat
visiting Detroit, 5-2, on Wednes-
day night to snap a four-game
skid and extend the Red Wings’
losing streak to six.
Chris Tierney, Mark Borow-
iecki and Jean-Gabriel Pageau
also scored to help the Senators
improve to 2-6-1. Anders Nilsson
made 34 saves for his first victory
of the season.
Darren Helm and Tyler Ber-
tuzzi scored for Detroit, and
Jonathan Bernier stopped
33 shots. The Red Wings are
After Detroit scored twice in a
1:40 span early in the second
period to take a 2-1 lead, Borow-

Oklahoma. After that, Texas
comes to town.
“The wins over Oklahoma and
Texas Christian two years ago
really springboarded us to a
different level,” Campbell said.
“They created a belief in
everyone. This time of year,
when teams have had success,
some take their eye off the
process and worry about results.
The ones that don’t do that are
the ones that succeed. We’ll see.
That’s what I tell the players all
the time: ‘Let’s see what we can
do.’ ”
Campbell will turn 40 the day
after Thanksgiving. His name
already has been mentioned for
more prominent jobs in the past.
It no doubt will be again as his
milestone birthday approaches.
He isn’t going to say, “I’ll never
leave Iowa State,” because that
would be foolish. But he’s clearly
happy where he is and proud of
what the program has become
since his arrival. But he knows
this team can rise even further.
“I’ve been around football and
coaching my whole life [his dad
was a high school coach], and if
there’s one thing I’ve learned, it’s
that the cliche coaches use about
staying in the present all the
time is true,” he said. “If you
don’t, you get humbled pretty
quickly, and there’s no avoiding
the spotlight when that
The present goes to another
level at Iowa State on Saturday.

For more by John Feinstein, visit

played a game at Iowa State the
previous season. “They were
having a tough year,” Campbell
said of a team that would finish
2-10. “But the atmosphere was
amazing. That stayed in my
mind. Plus, even though it wasn’t
Ohio, it was still the Midwest,
and our staff knew how to
recruit the Midwest.”
The Cyclones went 3-9 in
Campbell’s first season, but wins
in two of their final three games
provided momentum. There’s no
doubting where the turning
point came the next fall: at
Oklahoma in their fifth game.
The Sooners were undefeated
and ranked third, led by Baker
Mayfield, who went on to win
the Heisman Trophy. Iowa State
quarterback Jacob Park had just
taken a leave of absence, so the
Cyclones’ starter was fifth-year
walk-on Kyle Kempt, who
arrived after stops at Oregon
State and Hutchinson Junior
College. He did have a
remarkable college completion
percentage: He was 2 for 2.
Iowa State came from two
touchdowns down to win, 38-31,
with Kempt throwing for
343 yards and three touchdowns.
Just to prove it wasn’t a fluke,
the Cyclones beat then-fourth-
ranked TCU two weeks later.
They finished the season 8-5.
They were 8-5 again a year ago.
Now, at 5-2 with a No. 23
ranking, they face three weeks
that will tell them whether 8-5
and second-tier bowls are the
ceiling. Oklahoma State will
come to Ames on Saturday,
followed by a trip back to

college at Pittsburgh. “We were
very much going in the right
direction at Toledo, and my
thought was the next step for us
was the Boise State step, which I
thought was possible. I met with
Jamie, really, as a courtesy. When
Erica and I left the house, we
told the babysitter we’d be back
in half an hour.
“Three-and-a-half hours later,
Jamie pretty much had me
convinced. He didn’t sugarcoat
anything. He said this is square
one and it’s going to be hard. But
he convinced me winning wasn’t
a pipe dream. He sold me.”
It helped that Toledo had

that futility when he got a phone
call from Iowa State Athletic
Director Jamie Pollard in
November 2015. Campbell was
just about to turn 36 and had
just completed a 9-2 regular
season at Toledo that gave him a
35-15 record in four seasons (plus
one bowl win after he had taken
over at the end of the 2011
Pollard wanted to fly to Toledo
to meet with Campbell and his
wife, Erica. “I really had no
serious thoughts about taking
the job,” said Campbell, who had
spent his entire life in Ohio
except for his freshman year of

begin preparing for the following
week’s game against TCU.
“I wanted to hear their ideas
even before I talked to my
coaches,” he said. “I wanted them
to understand that I loved the
effort I was getting from the
entire group, but we needed to
find a way to look at the games
as something to enjoy, not
something that would cause
everyone to feel pressure. We
needed a way to be ourselves
without getting down 20-0.”
One of the oldest cliches in
sports is “try easier.” It can be
very difficult to achieve in big-
time college football because so
many people are judging you
every week, every play. But
Campbell knew that trying easier
was exactly what his team
needed to do. His captains
In the three weeks since that
meeting, Iowa State has beaten
TCU, West Virginia and Texas
Tech by a combined 59 points.
The fact that the three-game
winning streak isn’t all that
stunning is a measure of how far
the program has come since
Campbell arrived in 2016.
Campbell replaced Paul
Rhoads, who went 8-28 in the
last three of his seven seasons on
the job to end up with an overall
record of 32-55. That made
Rhoads the 20th of 21 Cyclones
coaches since 1919 to leave the
program with a losing record;
the only exception was Hall of
Famer Earle Bruce, who went 36-
32 in Ames between 1973 and
Campbell was well aware of

On the Sunday
morning in late
September after
Iowa State had
suffered what he
called a “gut-
wrenching” loss
to Baylor,
Cyclones Coach
Matt Campbell asked his five
captains to come in early to meet
with him.
Iowa State was 2-2, and both
losses had been eminently
winnable games: an 18-17 defeat
to archrival Iowa the second
week of the season and the loss
at Baylor, in which Campbell’s
team came from 20 points down
in the fourth quarter to lead by
one before a field goal with
21 seconds to go made them 23-
21 losers.
“Standing on the sideline at
Baylor when we got down 20-0,
it occurred to me that getting to
the finish line on Saturdays had
become a relief for the players,
that they weren’t enjoying the
experience of getting to compete
for those 60 minutes,” Campbell
said. “That had to start with me.
I had to look in the mirror. I’ve
never had a group that’s worked
harder or been more close-knit,
but they were putting too much
pressure on themselves. We
needed to figure out a way not to
do that.”
And so Campbell asked the
five players — Brock Purdy and
Josh Knipfel from the offense
and Ray Lima, Marcel Spears Jr.
and Greg Eisworth from the
defense — to come see him even
before he met with his coaches to


calgary — Washington Capi-
tals captain Alex Ovechkin
couldn’t help but yell over the
scrum of reporters headed
toward John Carlson after the
team’s 5-3 win Tuesday over the
Calgary Flames at Scotiabank
“Johnny for Norris!” Ovechkin
hollered, cracking a grin.
Just 11 games into the season,
it might be a little premature for
Carlson’s teammates to be talk-
ing about his worthiness for the
Norris Trophy, awarded annually
to the NHL’s best defenseman,
but Ovechkin made sure to an-
nounce it a few more times just
for good measure.
“It seems like anything he
wants, it goes in — passes, shots,
plays — and it is good for us,”
Ovechkin said.
As of Wednesday morning,
Carlson led the league in points
with 20 (five goals, 15 assists in
11 games) after scoring twice
Tuesday against the Flames.
The 29-year-old extended his
point streak to eight games,
matching his career high. He
became the fourth defenseman
in NHL history to record 20-plus
points in October and is the
fastest defenseman to 20 since
Paul Coffey did it in 10 games in
1988-89. Carlson is the third
defenseman to lead the league in
scoring through the first 20 days
of the season (Baldy Northcott,
1932-33; Bobby Orr, 1969-70 and
Asked how it felt to be in the
company of players such as Orr
and Coffey, Carlson responded,
“Yeah, that they are a lot better
players than me. But it’s pretty
cool, obviously great players in
that list, and you know I’m just
happy to be among them.”
Carlson insists some of his
points were “lucky,” repeatedly
calling scoring for defense-

men “streaky” and said he just
needs to “take it when he can get
Carlson’s first goal Tuesday
was a hopeful shot that seemed
to catch Calgary goaltender Cam
Talbot by surprise as it went into
the short side. His empty-netter
late in the game was a bouncer
that found the net.
And while any player needs a
couple of bounces to go his way
during the season, goaltender
Braden Holtby said Carlson’s
overall game Tuesday, especially
in the defensive zone alongside
Michal Kempny, was “phenome-

Capitals Coach Todd Reirden
said Carlson continues to earn
all the praise sent his way over
the first three weeks of the
“He’s our main guy back there,
that’s for sure,” Reirden said.
Over the past two seasons,
Carlson has been in the Norris
discussion, finishing in the top
five in voting both years but
never among the top three.
Last season, one in which he
earned an all-star nod for the
first time, Carlson was fourth
after tallying 70 points (13 goals,
57 assists). The year before, Carl-
son finished fifth after lead-

ing all defensemen with
68 points.
While Carlson remains hum-
ble, his teammates will gladly do
the talking for him. Ovechkin
always will be one of the first to
promote Carlson, as will Nicklas
Backstrom, who over the past
few years has been outspoken
about Carlson not getting
enough recognition around the
Carlson also was chosen as an
alternate captain this season,
taking over a role held by Brooks
Orpik. Carlson is being relied on
more than ever before to be the
leader on the blue line, and so

far, he has done that and more.
“He’s a terrific player first of
all, and to see him dominant the
way he does it is pretty incredi-
ble,” Backstrom said. “He is not
really chasing points, either. He
is a really good defenseman,
plays really solid back
there. Points are just going his
way, I think, and I’m happy for
Carlson is impressing oppo-
nents, too. Calgary captain Mark
Giordano said he equates Carl-
son to a high-powered forward,
having to account for him on the
ice at all times and making
sure to take away time and
“I’ve seen some pretty hot
starts, but I’ve never seen some-
thing like this,” Giordano said.
“Really impressive. He’s always
been a guy that puts up numbers,
and he is right up there offen-
sively year in and year out.”
Carlson’s play has been crucial
to the Capitals’ recent success.
Washington is on a four-game
winning streak after taking the
first two games of a five-game
trip that continues Thursday
against Edmonton.
“I think he took a step forward
obviously in his game, and his
confidence is really high,” Ovech-
kin said. “That’s why I said,
‘Johnny for Norris!’ ”

Carlson’s 20 points have Caps thinking Norris


Duclair scores twice to help Ottawa end four-game losing streak

Caps defenseman John Carlson scored twice in Tuesday’s win to remain in the NHL scoring lead.

Iowa State is finally winning games. The next step for the Cyclones is winning big.


Brock Purdy threw for 378 yards and three touchdowns as he and
Coach Matt Campbell, left, led Iowa State to a win over Texas Tech.


C A P I TA L S ’ N E X T T H R E E

at Edmonton Oilers

Today 9 NBCSW

at Vancouver Canucks

Tomorrow 10 NBCSW+

at Toronto Maple Leafs

Tuesday 7 NBCSW

Radio: WJFK (106.7 FM),
WFED (1500 AM)


The Patriots placed wide receiv-
er Josh Gordon on injured reserve
with knee and ankle injuries
Wednesday. Gordon suffered the
injuries during New England’s
win over the New York Giants in
Week 6 and sat out Monday night’s
win over the New York Jets.
Gordon’s absence means the Pa-
triots will be leaning even more on
veteran Mohamed Sanu, acquired
in a trade with Atlanta on Tuesday.
New England traded a second-
round draft pick in 2020 to the
Falcons. Sanu, 30, has 33 recep-
tions for 313 yards but only one
touchdown this season.
Gordon was among New Eng-
land’s leading receivers. In six
games, he had 20 catches for
287 yards and a touchdown.
l SAINTS: Drew Brees said he
plans to play Sunday against Ari-
zona unless his form in practice
this week does not meet his expec-
Brees said he is comfortable
throwing now that he is more than
five weeks out of surgery on his
right thumb, but he needs to see
how effective he can be during
competitive team drills this week
before he knows for certain that
his return is best for the team.
With backup Teddy Bridgewa-
ter filling in, the Saints (6-1) have
won all five games Brees has
missed since his injury in a Week 2
loss to the Los Angeles Rams.
l CHARGERS: Left tackle Rus-
sell Okung will make his season
debut Sunday at Chicago. Okung
has been recovering from a pul-
monary embolism caused by
blood clots.
l FALCONS: Coach Dan Quinn
said quarterback Matt Ryan is
hopeful he will return from a
sprained ankle to play against Se-
attle and that the team “will have a
better sense” of the quarterback’s
status Friday.
Ryan has not missed a start
since 2009. His streak covers
154 regular season games. Veteran
Matt Schaub would make his first
start since 2015 with Baltimore if
Ryan can’t play.
l CARDINALS: Arizona
signed Alfred Morris and Zach
Zenner to add depth at the
banged-up running back position.
Morris has played in 104 career
games over seven years and ran for
more than 1,000 yards in each of
his first three seasons with Wash-
Arizona’s Chase Edmonds had a
career-high 126 yards rushing in
Sunday’s win over the Giants. But
the Cardinals’ other running
backs — David Johnson (ankle)
and D.J. Foster (hamstring) — are
dealing with injuries.

l (^) LIONS: Detroit signed run-
ning back Paul Perkins a day after
putting running back Kerryon
Johnson on injured reserve with a
knee injury.
put Gordon
on IR with
knee injury
Detroit goalie Jonathan Bernier had a hard time stopping Anthony
Duclair, left, as the Red Wings lost their sixth consecutive game.

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