Braden Holtby: “To Get Appreciation Like That, I Wish I Could Turn It Around On them, Somehow.”

Photo: @Capitals

It was all set. The plan was perfectly laid out. Former Washington Capitals goaltender Braden Holtby was scheduled to go for his 300th career win against his old team on the same ice he won so many of his games.

Unfortunately the plan fell apart, as Holtby began dealing with a lower body injury about 10 days prior. He was out of Sunday’s game. But that wasn’t going to stop the tributes, signs and fan appreciation. There was no chance of that happening.

The Capitals played the much anticipated tribute video during the first television timeout. A time slot normally reserved for commercials, but not on this occasion. The tribute would continue into the start of play following the timeout.

Holtby held a quick interview with the Stars broadcast outlet, Bally’s  Sports Southwest, immediately following the tribute video.

”Pretty amazing. Pretty special. It’s definitely strange being back to a place you’ve been so many times on the other side. This city is such a good hockey city. It’s amazing, the fans are incredible. They always treated me and my family so well. To get appreciation like that, I wish I could turn it around on them, somehow.”

“I had tears in my eyes,” Stars head coach Rick Bowness said. “That’s emotion. You’ve got to love the fans here. They’re passionate. I love it here. It shows the respect and love they have for Braden, as we all do. You get emotional watching it because that’s what hockey’s all about, right? The passion of the fans, the passion of the players. That’s what you love about this game,” added Bowness.

“He’s been unbelievable for me,” Stars goaltender Jake Oettinger told The Athletic. “First of all, he’s just a great guy so to see him get that type of ovation, obviously is very well-deserved. I kind of got emotional a little bit. I can’t imagine meaning that much to a fan base. Obviously, he got it done here. He’s a legend and he got the ovation he deserved. I just can’t say enough good things about how good he’s been to me. There’s a reason you only hear great things about him. We’re going to be friends for a really long time, even after hockey, so I was happy for him.”

The dreaded salary cap forced Holtby to look for employment elsewhere, and nobody can really blame him for that. He’s a family man with a relatively short earnings window. But one thing is for certain, Capitals fans will never get enough of Braden Holtby. He may have been born in Saskatchewan, but the DMV is his home.

By Jon Sorensen

About Jon Sorensen

Jon has been a Caps fan since day one, attending his first game at the Capital Centre in 1974. His interest in the Caps has grown over the decades and included time as a season ticket holder. He has been a journalist covering the team for 10+ years, primarily focusing on analysis, analytics and prospect development.
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5 Responses to Braden Holtby: “To Get Appreciation Like That, I Wish I Could Turn It Around On them, Somehow.”

  1. Anonymous says:

    Thank you, Holts!

  2. Art says:

    We were so lucky to have Holtby with us, both on and off the ice. I wish him continued success and that he always has a home here.

  3. steven says:

    Was great while he was here and guess it was time to move on. Shame that it feels like he got pushed out the door.

  4. DC Scappeli says:

    Never got to meet him, but like said above, he seemed liked a really good dude off the ice and a good team mate on the ice and. Holts 4vr!!!

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