By Steve Chaconas
Fishing on the Potomac
The river is clearing and tides are right for early morning topwaters. Look for fish to be in water as shallow as 6 inches! Cloud cover will make this bite last longer!
Water temperatures should be into the mid 70s this week. NBC Ch. 4 meteorologist "Weather Kim" Martucci says, A warm start around 90 on Monday before temperatures stabilize around 80 for the week. Unfortunately the weather pattern will not be stable as a chance of thunderstorms exists every day with the best chance on Tuesday before clouds take over for the weekend
With early morning low water, try walking lures like Lucky Craft Gunfish and G-Splash poppers. Wake baits are also a good bet. In areas with grass, hollow or buzz frogs on braid will bring big ones up! If it's cloudy, try topwaters until they become ineffective.
As tides come in, lures that go a bit deeper like Manns Baby 1-Minus in firetiger patterns will keep baits closer to fish as the sun rises higher in the sky. Also try blackblue chatter jigs and swimming jigs like Manns Stone Jig with a HardNose craw trailer on GAMMA fluorocarbon to cover various depths. If there is a chop on the water and some cloud cover, try spinnerbaits.
As the sun comes up high at 11 oclock or so, try hitting heavy cover with soft plastics and jigs. Mizmo Tubes in River Craw patterns rigged Texas style on 16-pound test Gamma Edge Fluorocarbon. Target grass clumps or go to docks. Also try Mizmo Swamp Monsters in the same colors. A good soaking in garlic Jacks Juice helps. Try outside grass edges on lower water or drops with cover. This is also a good time to go to docks where no grass is present.
Alex Ovechkin has made clear that, despite the World Cup of Hockey, he still intends to play in the 2018 Olympics in PyeongChang, South Korea. But what if the NHL does not participate in the Olympics? Just how the league will handle the Russian superstar walking away from the league for two weeks during the season, however, remains to be seen.
The prospect for NHL participation in the 2018 Olympics is bleak. The IOC has declared it will no longer pay for NHL players' travel and insurance costs. Given that the NHL does not like closing down the season for a tournament they have no financial stake in, this could prove to be the death knell for Olympic participation.
Ovechkin, however, has already drawn his line in the sand.
"It's a situation when you don't know what's going to happen," Ovechkin said. "Obviously, I said I'm going to play."
Greg Wyshynski of the Yahoo blog Puck Daddy asked deputy commissioner Bill Daly how the NHL would respond.
“I don’t have a league reaction to that," Daly said. "If that became a prevailing view of a group of players, or a significant group of players, I might have a different view. But at this point it’s a single superstar player who will have a contract with one of clubs, and the club will handle that within its own discretion."
Ovechkin has always been very vocal about his love of representing his country and he made the same declaration prior to the Sochi Olympics. If the NHL is hoping he will be the only one to take such a vocal stance, however, they are sadly mistaken.
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It's not looking good for starter Stephen Strasburg to be ready to face the Los Angeles Dodgers in the National League Division Series next week, according to Nats general manager Mike Rizzo.
The Nats right-hander has been throwing off flat ground as part of his recovery from a right flexor mass strain. But he's running out of time with just over a week to go until Game 1.
"I think it would be kind of pushing it. I think that's fair to say," Rizzo said. With the calendar, it's unlikely that he will contribute in that first series."
Strasburg hasn't pitched since Sept. 7 when he sustained the injury in a game against the Atlanta Braves. It was his first start back off the disabled list after he dealt with right elbow soreness.
Strasburg, 28, made the All-Star team this season and is 15-4 with a 3.60 ERA in 24 starts. Without him, the Nationals will rely heavily on Max Scherzer and Tanner Roark in Games 1 and 2. Game 3 will likely go to either Gio Gonzalez or Joe Ross. The Nats have not determined whether Scherzer will pitch on short rest, but it does not sound like they are inclined to ask him to.
Manager Dusty Baker said on Tuesday it would not be his preference.
“I’d like not to do that on short rest because then what’s going to happen next round and the next round? He’s going to be on super short and then you’re risking injury. The other guys got to do their job," Baker said. "You can’t go to short rest on Max, to me, unless it’s just a dire emergency until late in the playoffs."
If the Nats are to advance to the NLCS, Game 1 would be on Oct. 15.
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