After 44 years of existence the Washington Capitals have finally won the Stanley Cup.
They defeated the expansion Las Vegas Golden Knights in five games, a prediction this blogger called before the series started.
Captain Alexander Ovechkin was over the moon accepting the Cup from Commissioner Gary Bettman. The snakebit superstar will finally get his well deserved ring for an outstanding performance throughout these playoffs. OV was awarded the Conn Smythe trophy as the most valuable player in the playoffs.
A well represented Capital crowd filled up the arena in Vegas. Washington has been one of the best teams in the NHL for the better part of the last decade, but continuously struggled in the post season. They were eliminated in the second round or sooner every year since 2011. But this 2017-18 team had what it took to win what is in my opinion the most difficult trophy to win in any sport.
Head Coach Barry Trotz led the way, always with his finger on the pulse of this Capital team. Trotz does not have a contract for next season and it will be interesting to see if he stays with this team or becomes the most sought after coach in the NHL this summer.
Goaltender Braden Holtby once again was strong and could have easily won the Conn Smythe as well. He continually out dueled Vegas’s Marc Andre Fleury and was a big reason the Capitals won it all.
For the Knights, they have nothing to be ashamed of. It was remarkable an expansion team made it this far to begin with. They kept turning heads, again and again all season long, especially in these playoffs. The Vegas fans gave them a standing ovation after the final buzzer.
The Knights took a 3-2 lead into the 3rd period, but 2 Capitals goals in a 3 minute span proved too much to overcome. Ovechkin got the scoring started as usual for Washington as his 15 goals led all players in the playoffs this year. OV’s reaction as he held the Stanley Cup was epic, all those years of waiting and frustration. All those missed opportunities all just faded away as the silver cup was held high in the Las Vegas night.