The Washington Capitals are coming off a third straight Metropolitan Division title. But their Stanley Cup window is closing.
The Washington Capitals have sat at the top of the divisional standings each year for the last three seasons. But they have yet to master the playoffs, and they may be running out of time.
The Capitals have the Presidents’ Trophy, awarded to the team finishing the season with the most points, twice since 2015. That is all well and good, but the ultimate goal for any team is to win the Stanley Cup.
The Capitals have been Stanley Cup contenders for the last decade…but they have yet to make to the Eastern Conference finals. The playoffs are a different kind of competition and things change fast. For any team, but especially in the NHL, there is only a short window of time to win, and other teams around you only get better and younger.
Its true that the Capitals are cautiously optimistic as they await the possibility of getting their hearts broken again. There are a lot of strong teams that they will have to face in the Eastern Conference — teams that may be younger and more confident.
Most would think that having one of the best rosters in the NHL would be enough to at least have an appearance in the finals. But rosters change all the time and players get older. The Capitals know that players get older or move on.
Since Alex Ovechkin made his debut in 2005, he has seen his team win seven division titles and make nine playoff appearances. At 32 years old, Ovechkin only has so many years in the his prime. He has marked 1,000 games played as a Capital. His career right now is overshadowed by the lack of a championship.
The Capitals need to take advantage of the roster they have and finally break the curse, because who knows when a chance like this is going to come around again.