(Eds: Updates with details, quotes and byline. With AP Photos.) By JOSEPH WHITE AP Sports Writer All those changes didn't get the Washington Capitals any further in the playoffs.
That's the big-picture view, the one that says this season was another disappointing performance by an immensely talented roster.
Remember last summer, when the Capitals in quick succession added five players who were the final pieces to really, for-sure, this-time-without-a-doubt take them to the Stanley Cup? Remember how they were the fashionable choice to win the Eastern Conference in September, a notion reinforced after their 7-0 start?
Then there's the other view, the one that focuses on the last two months, when Nicklas Backstrom and Mike Green finally got healthy and the team started to find a comfort level with the defensive mindset preached by new coach Dale Hunter, who had taken over when the tuned-out, run-and-gun Bruce Boudreau was fired in November.
After barely scraping into th...