The Original Young Guns

Those of us who go back more than a decade with the Caps remembered a different foursome of youngsters when the Caps recently trotted out a ticketing/poster incentive involving four of Washington’s top young players and titled it “Young Guns.” Joe Reekie and I remembered it right away and I set out to find a picture from the first foursome of “Young Guns.”

Here it is, taken from a 1995 Caps program spread titled (you guessed it) “Young Guns.” The boys were dressed in full western regalia, right down to chaps and bolo ties. In one of the photos, the guys are pointing the shafts of their hockey sticks at the camera as if they were rifles.

I wonder if the mid-90s Caps fans revered these four guys the same way the current fans love Alex Ovechkin, Nicklas Backstrom, Mike Green and Alexander Semin.


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28 Comments on “The Original Young Guns”

  1. Hockey Amor Says:


    I can’t figure out three of them (Kono’s nose is the only giveaway). please fill in the blanks!


  2. fullright Says:

    pretty sure one of ’em is Pat Peake

  3. Brad Says:

    The guy in the back is Gonchar, right?

  4. tj Says:

    Allison peake kono ?

  5. KEYS Says:

    Whom ever they are they are not as memorable as the guys we have now. Let’s Go CAPS!!!

  6. Ben Says:

    This may be way off but from L to R:
    Pat Peake, Kono, Witter (in back), Jason Wooley (?)

  7. Ben Says:

    or what about Enrico Ciccone LOL

  8. TJ Says:

    Wow I cant figure out who the guy in the back is.

    The guys in front are 100% Peake, Kono and Allison. But the guy in the back? I cant figure out who it is, looking at the first round picks, could be Witt or Halverson?

    Mike dont leave us hanging.

  9. bil Says:

    It’s fun to stay at the…..Y…M-C-A!

  10. Steve in Jersey Says:

    I thought the original young guns were Ryan Walter and Robert Picard.

  11. fullright Says:

    Poor Pat Peake…I’ve got a #14(?) Peake away jersey I need to pull out and dust off…really.

  12. fullright Says:

    I think the guy in the back is Gonch, as well.

  13. fullright Says:

    …and the one on the right, Allison. Seriously, Vogs?! the people NEED to KNOW.

  14. dumpnchase Says:

    The guys in the front are as many have posited: Peake, Kono and Allison. The guy in the back is a toughie, and one that I figured few — if any — would get.

    Rob Pearson.

    He came from Toronto in a trade that also involved one of those five Scott Stevens draft choices, if memory serves. Didn’t quite work out. I wanna say he was traded away for Denis Chasse, but I am sans media guide at the moment and dunno for sure.

    And Steve, you may be right about Walter and Picard, but it was before my time here. In those days I was in Chicago watching a young Denny Savard, Al Secord, Bob Murray, Doug Wilson and the passing of the torch from Tony O to Murray Bannerman.

    Anyway, sorry to leave you all hanging but I had to run to dinner.

  15. MM Says:

    Andrew Brunette is the guy on the far right, not Allison. Thats the most Brokeback photo i’ve seen since the movie poster.

  16. MM Says:

    oops. That post wasn’t there a second ago. My bad.

  17. Drew Says:

    The great irony, of course: of the two mid-90s Young Guns who actually enjoyed lengthy careers, neither of them had his breakout season (on par with, say, Backstrom) before the age of 27.

  18. Drew Says:

    (Or age 25, if it was actually Allison rather than Brunette. But STILL!)

  19. painkiller72000 Says:

    The main guy we gave up in the trade for Rob Pearson was Mike Ridley. Rids went to Toronto and Pearson came here, the Leafs ans the Caps flipped first round picks in the trade as well; I don’t remember who Toronto took, but we took Nolan Baumgartner with our pick.

    Pearson was about as big a bust as you can think of. He scored al of ONE goal in a Capitals uniform. Fittingly enough, it was a game winner, in the playoffs, against Pittsburgh. And, no lie, he scored it sliding on his ass, backwards into the net.

    I called him “Punching Bag Pearson” because that’s pretty much all he was here in Washington. It didn’t take long for us to flip him off to St. Louis (for Denis Chasse) where Pearson wound up being on the ice and getting an assist on Bret Hull’s 500th goal. Go figure.

  20. Funkyglovefacewash Says:

    Ouch! I can still vividly picture Peake shattering his heal in the corner, what a shame. This pic brings back many fond memories and many painful ones as well. Let’s hope our current ‘Young Guns’ have a better fate. While on the subject, great news about the
    Z man. Even though he’s the enemy now, we don’t want to see that ever happen to anyone. Hats off to all trainers and medical personel that helped save his life.

  21. Tom in FL Says:

    I was at the draft party at the Cap Centre in 1994 and remember Ridley there and then he left, crying, because they told him he had been traded. Caps made some really bad trades back then – Dino, Rids, Khristich for the pick that turned into Volchkov. Not keeping Scott Stevens had to be the biggest mistake of all.

  22. Marks4Java Says:

    Oh yeah! Rob “I was Eric Lindros’ linemate in Oshawa” Pearson.
    He had a lot of potential.
    Man, that’s actually a sad set of 4 guys.
    Peaker had his career ended early, Allison with chronic injuries, Kono with his heart issue, and Pearson… well, he just wasn’t an NHL regular.

    Hey, I wonder if the ice at US Air arena had something to do with all that?

  23. Mike L Says:

    Gads… what a shot. Only Kono really had any NHL success for an extended period of time. Pearson had potential, but Lindros made him a star at the junior ranks (Lindros is another one who didn’t make it to his full potential either…)

    Peake had real talent and was going to be a star. From the knees up, he was a fine hockey player, but his ankles and feet were made of glass, unfortunately. Even before he shattered his foot in Pittsburgh, he had had a bad ankle injury his last year of juniors.

    I spoke to Peake at the fan appreciation last April and he’s said he has had over 30 surgeries on his foot and ankle from that injury and knew he would still have more to go, even now. I can still remember seeing it happen on TV too… you see Peake slip, go into the boards, and then over the crowd you can hear him screaming and the place then goes silent other than him….just awful.

    It’s also sad that Kono’s career ended early, and that he had to miss the Olympics in 2002 (when they were being held in Salt Lake City, his hometown!). Allison had some good years with Toronto, and was one of the key pieces to pry Adam Oates from the Bruins (they almost got Kono too, but the decided instead they wanted Anson Carter).

    Strange photo, now, 14 years later.

  24. jmf Says:

    Thought it was Scott Stevens, Dino Ciccarelli, Neil Sheehy, Geoff Courtnall? JK

  25. jmf Says:

    C’mon – that was funny, wasn’t it?? Let’s Go Caps! (Just don’t get into a limo with those young guns).

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