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Caps Today, 5/25/18

May 25, 2018
The Washington Capitals will take on the Vegas Golden Knights in the 2018 Stanley Cup Final, marking the second time in franchise history the Capitals qualified for the Cup Final.

In the Eastern Conference Final, Washington became the eighth team to overcome a 3-2 deficit to win a Conference Finals/Semifinals series (since 1974-75) after splitting Games 1 through 4. Additionally, the Capitals improved to 8-2 as visitors in the 2018 Stanley Cup Playoffs, outscoring opponents 36-20 in those contests. The Capitals are now two road wins away from matching the NHL record for most in a postseason.

Capitals forward Alex Ovechkin (11g, 11a, 22p), who ranks second in playoff scoring behind teammate Evgeny Kuznetsov (11g, 13a, 24p), looks to cap a milestone season by winning the Stanley Cup in his first trip to the Final. Kuznetsov, who assisted on Ovechkin’s opening goal in the Capitals’ 4-0 Game 7 win over the Tampa Bay Lightning, extended his point streak to a franchise-record 10 games (6g, 9a). He is just the seventh player in the last 20 years (since 1998) to register a playoff point streak of at least 10 games and the first since 2014. Kuznetsov’s 24 points (11g, 13a) lead the playoffs and mark a franchise record for most points in a single postseason.

The 2017-18 regular season saw Ovechkin achieve career milestones in goals (600) and games played (1,000). His 13th NHL campaign also saw him reach the 40-goal mark for the ninth time – outdoors at the 2018 Coors Light NHL Stadium Series in Annapolis, Md., on March 3 – en route to capturing his seventh Maurice “Rocket” Richard Trophy.

Ovechkin aims to become the third player in NHL history to score 600 career regular-season goals before hoisting his first Stanley Cup. Luc Robitaille won the Cup with the Red Wings in 2002 after compiling 620 goals, while Dave Andreychuk captained the Lightning to a championship in 2004 after scoring 634 times.

Additionally, Ovechkin can become the 16th player in NHL history to play at least 1,000 career regular-season games before winning his first Cup – and second to do so with the team for which he has played at least 1,000 games (Steve Yzerman w/ DET). He also seeks to become the ninth player to have 1,000 career points before capturing his first Cup.

If the Capitals win the series, Ovechkin (Moscow, Russia) would become the first Russian player to captain a Stanley Cup champion. Only two European-born and trained players have done so: Nicklas Lidstrom (Vasteras, Sweden) in 2008 with the Red Wings and Zdeno Chara (Trencin, Slovakia) in 2011 with the Bruins.

Must Read/See/Hear Material

Dump ‘n Chase: POSTGAME NOTEBOOK: Caps 4, Bolts 0

Washington Post: Between Capitals’ trips to Stanley Cup finals, Washington hockey transformed / Alex Ovechkin and Nicklas Backstrom’s long journey together reaches Stanley Cup finals at last / Fancy Stats: Capitals should be favored over the Golden Knights for Stanley Cup finals / D.C. Sports Bog: Everything you need to know about the Vegas Golden Knights / D.C. Sports Bog: Caps fans are headed to Vegas for the Stanley Cup finals — with or without tickets / D.C. Sports Bog: Best Caps ‘jersey fouls’ of the season (so far)

Washington Times: 'There's no words:' fans thrilled over Capitals' Stanley Cup berth / Loverro: Older, wiser Ovechkin is the difference

NBC Sports Washington: Believe it or not, this isn't the first D.C. vs. Vegas postseason matchup / Capitals listed as underdogs in their first Stanley Cup since 1998 / How the Caps upset the Lightning to win the conference championship Golden Knights vs. Capitals Stanley Cup Final preview / Stanley Cup Final staff predictions / Stanley Cup Final storylines / Golden Knights-Capitals Cup Final finds Fleury facing familiar foe / Schmidt ready to face former team with Golden Knights in Cup Final / Capitals reach Stanley Cup Final behind Holtby, success on road / McPhee played major role in Capitals, Golden Knights reaching Cup Final / Capitals showing why they're different during run to Stanley Cup Final / Capitals, Golden Knights a great Cup Final, NBC Sports analysts say / Ovechkin uses Prince of Wales Trophy as centerpiece in home

AP: DC Relief: Capitals’ run to Cup Final ends 20-year drought / Nevada congresswoman, DC delegate bet on Stanley Cup Final

The Athletic: Systems Analyst: Tom Wilson’s Game 7 might have been the most Tom Wilson game Tom Wilson has ever played

Detroit Free Press: Stanley Cup final preview, prediction: Golden Knights vs. Capitals

ESPN: Stanley Cup Final tale of the tape: Full series breakdown and picks / Experts' picks for the 2018 Stanley Cup Final, Conn Smythe winner / Permission for optimism: The Caps take on D.C.'s pain /

The Hockey News: Why The Capitals’ Stanley Cup Final Berth Is The Death Knell For Ovechkin-Can’t-Win Narrative / Golden Knights Vs. Capitals In Stanley Cup Final Is Win-Win For Fans

National Post: 10 reasons the Washington Capitals can win their first Stanley Cup

NBC Sports: Virginia town looking to change name to ‘Capitalsville’ / Conn Smythe Power Rankings: It is still Fleury’s to lose / The long Stanley Cup Final wait is finally over for Alex Ovechkin, Capitals

NBC Sports Boston: Morning Skate: Can Caps end the DC drought?

NHLPA: Playoff Performer Of The Night | Alex Ovechkin / Visa Presents: Player Q&A With Dmitry Orlov

Omnisport: Virginia town hopes to change name to 'Capitalsville' after Washington makes it to Stanley Cup Final / NHL playoffs 2018: Alex Ovechkin defies superstition, touches Prince of Wales Trophy

Sporting News: Alex Ovechkin's career-defining moments, quotes and highlights / Alex Ovechkin's top 10 career moments

Sports Capitol: Braden Holtby came through when Caps needed him most

Sports Illustrated: Capitals, Golden Knights Each Eyeing First Stanley Cup Title

SportsNet: Capitals-Golden Knights Stanley Cup final by the stats

Toronto Star: Stanley Cup going to either a casino or the Kremlin, who would’ve guessed?

Trib Live: Stats show Alex Ovechkin need not fear matchup with Marc-Andre Fleury / Fleury vs. Ovechkin. Reaves vs. Wilson. All kinds of fun in Stanley Cup Final.

TSN: By the Numbers: A look ahead to Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Final / Capitals quieted Lightning’s big guns / Trotz on Ovechkin: He's 'been on a mission'

UPI: Caps' Wilson bloodies knuckles in fight with Lightning's Coburn

USA Today: Stanley Cup 2018: Golden Knights vs. Capitals predictions

Washington Business Journal: The last time the Caps made the finals, AOL had 13 million subscribers

Washington City Paper: At Age 32, a Twist in the Alexander Ovechkin Story

WJLA: WATCH: Dad quietly celebrates Caps win while baby sleeps

WTOP: Late Metro service funding sought again as Caps reach Stanley Cup Final / Stanley Cup fever reaches Capitol Hill with friendly bet between 2 politicians / When the gloves come off: Breaking down Caps’ Game 7 brutal brawl

Yahoo! Puck Daddy: Puck Daddy Bag of Playoff Mail: The Cup Final is here!


TV/Audio Clips:

Washington Capitals: Capitals to play for Stanley Cup

106.7 The Fan: Chad Dukes vs. the World: 5-24-18 Hour 1 - The Washington Capitals. / Chad Dukes vs. the World: 5-24-18 Hour 2 - John Walton (0:10) / Chad Dukes vs. the World: 5-24-18 Hour 3 - Thom Loverro in Studio (0:10) / Chad Dukes vs. the World: 5-24-18 Hour 4 - Joe Theismann & the Caps / Grant and Danny: 5.24.18 Hour 1: Caps won! / Grant and Danny: 5.24.18 Hour 2: Is it different than 98? / Grant and Danny: 5.24.18 Hour 3: #ALLCAPS Beltway Blitz + Favorite Moment? / Grant and Danny: 5.24.18 Hour 4: Attaboys

CBS Sports: Who will win the Stanley Cup?

ESPN: Around the Horn: Caps Advance!

ESPN New York 98.7: Game Misconduct Podcast: Caps advance to Stanley Cup Final

Japers’ Rink: JRR Episode 88: And Then There Were Two (G7 Recap)

NBC Sports Washington: Capitals Faceoff Podcast: On to Vegas! / Get to know  the Capitals' Stanley Cup Final opponents NHL LiveWire: TBL vs. WSH, Gm6

NHL Network: NHL Tonight: Carlson or Karlsson / NHL Tonight: Capitals' journey / NHL Tonight: Vegas' strengths / NHL Tonight: Power Plays / NHL Tonight: Ken Sabourin / NHL Now: Head-to-Head match-ups / NHL Now: Jaffe and Pang / NHL Now: Ovechkin Narrative / NHL Now: Tom Wilson in Game 7 / NHL Now: Ovechkin's Goals in ECF

Reuters TV: Washington Capitals head to finals after 20 years

SportsNet: 31 Thoughts, The Podcast: Put Your Money On Vegas / Golden Knights Edge Capitals In Depth But Not Physicality / Tim & Sid: Ovechkin Finally Gets To Go To The Stanley Cup Final / Ovechkin’s Been Man-Possessed Since Start Of Season / Stanley Cup Final Preview & Leafs News

TSN: Capitals vs. Golden Knights - Who has the edge on defence? / Capitals vs. Golden Knights - Who has the advantage in net? / Capitals vs. Golden Knights - Who has the edge up front? / McLennan breaks down Ovechkin's impressive goal in Game 7 / Fleury dishes on Knights' incredible run, motivation to win Cup post-Penguins (Capitals mentioned)

TSN Edmonton 1260: Seravalli: The connections in this Cup Final are crazy / Dreger: Capitals learned through losing

TSN Montreal 690: Habs Lunch: The Caps finally did it / Raby: Capitals have that swagger / Dreger: This isn't the same Caps team / 3 Starr Quiz: Capitals or Knights, what's the better story?

TSN Ottawa 1200: McGuire: How can you not be happy for Ovechkin

TSN Toronto 1050: Dreger on Laurence Gilman hiring by Maple Leafs (Capitals mentioned) / Whyno: Vegas making the Stanley Cup is a validation of George McPhee / Dreger: Holtby has been tremendous since entering the playoffs / McGuire: Ovechkin's passion was phenomenal to watch / Colaiacovo: The Capitals are a team that have paid their dues

TSN Vancouver 1040: Woodley: Intriguing goalie matchup in Stanley Cup Final / Johnson: See casual US fans cheering for Vegas, Canadian fans for Capitals

WJLA-TV ABC 7: Live from Capital One Arena (6 a.m.) / Live from Capital One Arena (5 a.m.) / On the Capitals Arriving Back in DC (6 a.m.)

WNST: Ed Frankovic and Nestor celebrate the Capitals going to the Stanley Cup Finals

WRC-TV NBC 4: Live from Capital One Arena (4 p.m.) / On the Caps Viewing Party and the Capitals Arriving Back to DC (6 a.m.) / On the Capitals Viewing Party and the Caps Advancing (5 a.m.) / Live Hit from Capital One Arena (5 a.m.) / On the Capitals Advancing (5 a.m.) / On the Capitals Advancing (4 a.m.)

WTTG-TV FOX 5: Caps Weather Report (8 a.m.) / Live Hit from Capital One Arena (10 a.m.) / Live Hit on the Capitals Advancing (9 a.m.) / Live Hit from Capital One Arena (9 a.m.) / Capitals Weather Report (8 a.m.) / Live Hit from Capital One Arena (8 a.m.) / Capitals Weather Report (7 a.m.) / Live Hit on the Capitals Advancing (7 a.m.) / Live Hit from Capital One Arena (7 a.m.) / Live Hit on the Capitals Advancing (6 a.m.) / On the Capitals Arriving Back in DC (4 a.m.) / On the Capitals Arriving Back in DC (7 a.m.)

WUSA-TV CBS 9: Live Hit from Capital One Arena (5 a.m.) / On the Capitals Arriving Back in DC  (5 a.m.) / Live Hit from Capital One Arena (5 a.m.) / Live Hit from Capital One Arena (6 a.m.) / Capitals Game 7 Viewing Party and Caps Intro on Great Day Washington (9 a.m.)

Golden Knights Clips:

AP: George McPhee’s strategic moves help Vegas reach Cup Final / Bright lights, casinos and home for Golden Knights

The Athletic: Dellow: What does William Karlsson’s season mean? / LeBrun: Marc-André Fleury is the toast of the town in Vegas, but many in Pittsburgh still pulling for him

National Post: How did we get here? Is the Vegas Golden Knights' success random or an indictment of all the flailing franchises? Crosby 'happy' Fleury reached Cup Final with Golden Knights: report / Golden Knights' brightest playoff moment debated by writers / Yzerman has high praise for Golden Knights ahead of Final / Golden Knights need Fleury, defensive commitment to win Stanley Cup

Las Vegas Review-Journal: Golden Knights players, GM familiar with Stanley Cup Final foe / Golden Knights’ style brings success home or away / Championship parade talks in the works for Golden Knights / All the ways Golden Knights fans are preparing for final series

Las Vegas Sun: Golden Knights’ Schmidt brings elevated game to finals versus former team

The Score: Why the Golden Knights are primed to become a perennial juggernaut

USA Today: Why are hockey fans bitter about the Golden Knights' run to Stanley Cup Final?