Capitals – Golden Knights: Game One Jitters? Simple Things to Fix.

The Capitals and Knights finally met up in Las Vegas for Game One of the Stanley Cup Final and there was little doubt that both teams were a bit on edge. They were focused, but neither team came out playing their best. In the end, Vegas took a final goal lead and closed the deal with an empty net goal, 6-4 VGK.

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Viewing the Caps Game One Loss from Capital One Arena

Wow! We are still getting used to the reality that the Washington Capitals are in the playoffs. Monday night, while many Caps fans were seen entering T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas a whole lot more at home filled Capital One Arena.

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Capitals Weekend Practice: Ready for the Final Run

The Washington Capitals touched down in Las Vegas Saturday afternoon. First they held a crazy practice at Kettler Ice Plex, got cheered on by fans, and walked a runway to their cars. We have pictures!

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And They’re Off! Caps Players Head to Vegas to Chase Stanley

After today’s practice the boys were set to leave for Las Vegas in hopes of bringing home a two game series lead. But before they could leave on their five hour journey across the country Caps fans had to give them a proper send-off and that is exactly what we did. Two hours and a very red photographer later we ended up with some great photos of the boys that we KNOW you will love. So without further adieu;

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Saturday was ALL about CAPS Fans, Photos Celebrating the Caps

The Washington Capitals put the word out on Friday that there would be a grand sendoff for the boys at Capitals Kettler Ice Plex in Ballston, VA. We came to wish the Caps success as they headed into the desert to face the Vegas Golden Knights. In the end though, it was all about the fans who have waited a very very long time for this moment and were crazy with CAPS FEVER!!

watermarked65(2018-05-26-1747)And the fans turned out in a HUGE way. The Capitals said there were around 6,000 in attendance. They arrived in droves, some like us as early as 8:30! That’s some dedication there! Including our favorite PA Wes Johnson! Continue reading “Saturday was ALL about CAPS Fans, Photos Celebrating the Caps”

In Defense of Tom Wilson

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Caps fans are still walking on air after the team finally overcame their Game 7 demons and dispatched the Lightning to advance to the fourth round, securing the team’s first shot at the Stanley Cup in 20 years.  It was a dominant performance in all aspects of the game and even the analysts who are paid to pick nits had a hard time finding much negative to say after the final horn sounded.
The one controversy swirling among the fan base today concerns the donnybrook that occurred between Tom Wilson and Braydon Coburn in the first period.  Was it a heroic showing by the team’s enforcer, standing up appropriately for Kuznetsov’s dignity and his team’s honor?  Or was it a bone-headed loss of control by a crucially important top line player who should have known better than to risk ejection in such a significant game?  The answer depends on whom you ask.

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Washington Capitals June Surprise Schedule

A lot of us have been caught off guard! We are so accustomed to heading off to vaca in May because the season is over. Lots of fans and season ticket holders (STH) already have family vacations planned and will be missing part of the Caps run at the Stanley Cup. Continue reading “Washington Capitals June Surprise Schedule”

Caps “Rock the Road” and are headed home with 2-0 lead in the series

After 20 years, the Washington Capitals are back to the Eastern Conference Finals in big style. The franchise, which has never beat the Tampa Bay Lightning in a playoff series, are now 2-0 after winning games one and two in Tampa. Now the Caps are two victories away from the Stanley Cup Final and they can hopefully achieve that before their fans at Capital One Arena. Continue reading “Caps “Rock the Road” and are headed home with 2-0 lead in the series”

Caps & Bolts: Preview of the Series Ahead

The Washington Capitals have finally thrown the monkey off their backs and progressed past the second round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs, but the road does not end here. Next up on the big stage are the infamous Tampa Bay Lightning, Atlantic Division leaders.

Credit: nhl.com

Tampa has always been a force to be reckoned with, especially with the services of Steven Stamkos and Nikita Kucherov. What makes their club so successful is the way the other players have stepped up and produced. Notable names are Brayden Point, Yanni Gourde, and Victor Hedman. Most of all, their net minder Andre Vasilevsky has proven himself to the league as an elite goaltender. Previously the backup for Ben Bishop, Vasilevsky was already determined to take over the starter job in Tampa. His square style and mind-bottling desperation saves help him plead his case to the league.

Tampa is a complete package kind of hockey team. They are fast, fluent, tough, and seasoned; all aspects that make a well put-together playoff squad. A few players that bring the grit are guys like Ryan Callahan, Cedric Paquette, and Chris Kunitz. All of these men have proven themselves tough customers and are sure to try and set the tone early in game one.

The Caps need to bring their game as they did with the Pittsburgh Penguins, lots of scoring chances and smart plays. The boys obviously are blessed with the performances of Braden Holtby and Evgeny Kuznetsov, but the returns of Tom Wilson and Nicklas Backstrom are sure to reignite a flare to the lineup. Lines will most likely reform back to the way they were in the Semi Conference Finals, only with minor tweaks:

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Defensive pairings won’t change, consistency is key at this point in the game. Top pair Michal Kempny and John Carlson have been stellar this post-season with a combined point total of 12 and a plus/minus of +4. While Kempny isn’t contributing much on the scoresheet, he compliments Carlson’s two-way play very well with his stay-at-home defensive style. He makes the defensive plays that deteriorate opponent’s score chances, takes the simple option and has a great first pass off the breakout. Carlson has also had a milestone regular and post-season thus far. With fans hoping the Caps re-sign him before the free-agent market window, he sure is adding hundreds to his potential deal with every play and point he contributes to the Caps’ defensive and offensive success. Look for these two to make a key difference this series.

Alex Ovechkin and Tom Wilson will be critical weapons this series for the Caps against the Bolts. The team needs Ovi on the scoresheet as much as possible. This is where production is needed from the scorers and playmakers, and Alex knows that. This is a bigger stage than he has ever been on in the NHL and I would look out for him to put everything he has out on the ice. Wilson can also make a huge impact in this best of seven. The team needs him to be just as aggressive, if not more aggressive than he was in the Pittsburgh series. With him on the ice, everyone will be looking over their shoulder and looking out for Whip. Avoid the dumb penalties, don’t let them get away with cheap shots, and be that intimidating and reckoning physical force on the playing field.

This’ll be a tough, competitive series. Caps must dig deep here if they want to knock off the Bolts and progress the Stanley Cup Finals. As always, we will be providing updates and insight via Twitter. Give us a follow @InColdPlacesDC and follow my personal @Jurky88. Go Caps go!

After 20 Long Years, The Second Round Curse Is Broken!

This is an article on my experience (Bryce) and reaction to the series winner last night against the Penguins at PPG Arena.

 

I’ve been a Washington Capitals fan since the early 2000s and walked into a community of heartbreak and hopelessness. I was taught growing up that when times are tough, you stick together and push through. Since 1998, the Caps community has suffered through let downs and zero successes. When Alex Ovechkin was drafted in 2004, I knew that he was a sure sign of hope. However, there would be changes to come with time and coordination for good opportunity. From then until now, it has been a grueling process getting pass the second round of the Stanley Cup playoffs. Evgeny Kuznetsov made everyone’s wish come true with the overtime winner in game six to eliminate the Pittsburgh Penguins, their arch nemesis of the post-season, and it couldn’t be any sweeter without his signature flying bird celebration.

Monday night, I was out playing pick up hockey at my local ice rink. I made the decision not to watch due to nervousness and because I just love playing the game (good exercise, too.). However, nothing stopped me from streaming the game from my phone before and after my ice session. I caught the last 2 minutes of the overtime period while I was removing my gear to head home. Anxiously watching and very slowly take piece by piece off of my equipment, I was on my toes just like everyone else. When Kuznetsov scored the game winner, I tossed my shin guards up in the air and almost hit my buddy on the other side of the locker room with them. I was screaming and jumping up and down while half-dressed in hockey gear and street clothes. I haven’t celebrated that hard about hockey since I won a round-robin tournament in Connecticut when I was a teenager. The feeling was such a relief, as if a huge burden was lifted off my shoulders. I did not cry, but the feeling I had almost made me want to. Such joy ran course through me as I’m sure all of you can relate. After my very merry drive home, I arrived and cracked open a few celebratory beers.

What an unreal experience for all of us Caps fans. I am so glad to be a part of this amazing community. We must stay positive, for the Tampa Bay Lightning won’t be such a cake walk. For now though, let’s all enjoy this justified victory! ALLCAPS!