Photo: NHL via Getty Images
With the Cup finally making its new home in the DMV, and a few days of revelry under our belts (just getting started), we began to think back about the past two months of playoff craziness, and try to pinpoint where the Capitals fortunes changed. It was easy to do.
In hindsight, it happened in perfect form. Sidney Crosby, the Captain of the 2017 Champions, turned the puck over to Alex Ovechkin, the new 2018 Cup champion. A symbolic transition. The rest is glorious history.
In hindsight, one could argue that the 2018 playoffs were following in very similar fashion compared to recent postseason runs. Falling down 0-2 in a first-round slug-fest series with the Blue Jackets, then rallying for four straight wins to advance. Eller’s overtime goal in Game 3 was big, but it was just that, a win in the first round. Nothing historically had changed at this point. Similar to Kuznetsov’s goal in Game 7 versus the Islanders in 2015. A huge win, but similar results in the end.
Round 2 and the Penguins was also following familiar suit. The Game 6 overtime nearly went to the Penguins, if not for a few stellar defensive stops. Then Kuzy changed the Capitals’ course. If the Pens slam it home, the series is tied 3-3 and going to a Game 7. Sound familiar?
— NoVa Caps (@NoVa_Caps) June 8, 2018
The Capitals vanquished all historical road blocks in their 2018 postseason run (Torts, Penguins, Sidney, Lightning, Fleury, McPhee, etc.). Kuzy’s goal was the turning point. Crosby’s exchange of the puck to Ovechkin was the defining moment.
By Jon Sorensen