The Caps have been to the Stanley Cup Final only once in their 42-year history, in 1998. Their coach that season, Ron Wilson, hasn’t coached in the NHL in a few years, but today, he’s back in the news.
Wilson, 61, has suffered a stroke, according to Helene Elliott of the LA Times and is currently in rehab.
Former Ducks and US national team coach Ron Wilson had a stroke and is in rehab, according to several of his friends.
— Helene Elliott (@helenenothelen) December 14, 2016
Wilson coached the Capitals for five seasons after being hired by the team in the summer of 1997. In his first season, he led the Caps to their first (and only) Stanley Cup Final appearance in franchise history, finishing with 40 wins, 30 losses, and 12 ties (the shootout wasn’t implemented until 2005).
Over his next four seasons, the Caps had varying degrees of success, and in his final season (2001-02), finished with a 36-33-11 record. He was fired after the season; in his five years behind the bench, Wilson went 206-122-19-38 (OT losses), good enough for a .609 winning percentage. Wilson last coached the Toronto Maple Leafs in 2011-12.
Here’s wishing Coach Wilson a full and quick recovery.
By Michael Fleetwood