Found May 13, 2012 on
The Washington Capitals overcame adversity when it came to playoffs pairings this postseason.
With Round 1′s matchup against the Boston Bruins, the Caps showed just how different of a team they were from Day 1 of the 2011-12 season.
Members of the Washington Capitals react after losing Game 7 against the New York Rangers.
Being able to knock off last year’s Stanley Cup champions is the epitome of change to come. And that change was the fact that the NHL would have a new Stanley Cup champion.
So the test continued into Round 2: the No. 1 seed New York Rangers.
Seven games and seven hard-fought battles later their destiny was laid out. It wasn’t meant to be, just yet.
It’s hard to flip a team in five years. It’s even harder to do so in two. But to scrap the plan that Bruce Boudreau laid for the team, hire a new bench boss in Dale Hunter, and to make a run for perfection is asking for a lot.
And the Capitals delivered their all. It also appears they’ve found a new goalie in Braden Holtby. But, most importantly, beside the difference-makers, there’s an overall change in the atmosphere in Washington. And that change is the team identity.
From the Washington Post:
The sometimes selfish, often unfocused and occasionally downright demoralized Caps of the past four postseasons have, apparently disappeared. Instead, the Capitals have coped with the gradual aging, injury and erosion of some of their brightest stars and have adjusted on the fly — made a midcourse correction, one of the most difficult tasks in sport.
Although the Capitals had a slight statistical advantage entering Game 7 in terms of special teams, and a few individuals who looks promised advancement in the playoffs, the Rangers have shown why their revamp over the offseason is product of unity over a course of the full season. That’s something the Capitals have not had the ability to do: Play unified for the full season.
But they made up a lot of loss opportunities. While Alexander Ovechkin performed his least-productive season with 65 points, Washington doesn’t need to live up to the expectations of one man.
From the Washington Times:
“Yeah. It’s a terrible feeling now,” the captain (Ovechkin) said. “All I can say, we did our best and it’s probably the best team I played [with].”
Ovechkin’s comments brings the season full circle. The once heavily-focused Russian franchise player is just part of a great team these days. Expect that team identity to carry on next season.
Matthew Wilson is editor of Center Ice Chat. Follow him on Twitter @Mattjw24. Be sure to also Like us on Facebook and to Follow our Tumblr page. If you'd like to contribute, or appear as a guest columnist, please email us at CenterIceChat@gmail.com.
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Dale Hunter is finished as coach of the Washington Capitals after less than one full season, telling the team he wants to return to his family in Canada.
Hunter says: ''It was the right thing to do.''
He told general manager George McPhee of the decision Monday, two days after the Capitals were eliminated from the playoffs by the Rangers in Game 7.
Hunter was hired...
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Dale Hunter told Washington Capitals GM George McPhee during a meeting this morning that he will not be returning to the Caps next year as head coach. The decision comes shortly after the Capitals early exit from the NHL Playoffs.
According to the Washington Post:
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from Thomas Boswell of the Washington Post, The Washington Capitals didn’t just lose a second-round playoff series in seven tight, tough games with the top-seeded New York Rangers here in thunderous Madison Square Garden on Saturday night. This was a defeat with a victory of a different but enormously important kind, hidden inside it.
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As the Washington Capitals' post season hopes ceased Saturday night with a loss in Game 7 of the Eastern Conference Semi Finals at the hands of the New York Rangers, many fans looked back on the 2011-12 NHL season with frustration. We here at Rock the Red want to celebrate the successes and unheralded efforts throughout the Caps' past year, and will be presenting several...
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Remember last summer, when the Capitals in quick succession added...
What an up-and-down season for the Washington Capitals. After changing coaches, not making moves at the trading deadline, pretty much (unofficially) putting a freeze on contract extensions and barely making the playoffs, the Caps eliminated the defending champion Boston Bruins in the first round before bowing out to the New York Rangers in last night’s game seven of the conference...
For two of the three games in Washington, the Rangers appeared to be outmatched. This isn’t to say that the Caps actually outplayed the Rangers, except for Game Six, but it’s to say that the Caps appeared to match up better against the Rangers –and therefore played better– in those games. One can just look at the games and think that the Rangers just didn’t have it, or...
Last year we got the pleasure of euglogizing the Montreal Canadiens. This year we get to eulogize the Washington Capitals. Head over to PuckDaddy to read it. Can't wait to see how many times we're called classless, not funny, or have people wish DGB wrote it.
The Washington Capitals’ 2011-12 season came crashing down on Saturday night as they fell to the New York Rangers inside Madison Square Garden in game seven of the Eastern Conference Semifinal. The Caps surrendered the lead only 92 seconds in to the game on a goal from Brad Richards and never recovered. The Rangers’ stifling defense, led by Vezina and Hart Trophy nominee...
Photo by John McDonnell/The Washington Post
Monday was a rainy day in Arlington, Virginia.
As light rain pattered across the giant glass window that serves as the entrance to Kettler Capitals Iceplex, Vice President and General Manager George McPhee strode around the corner and towards the throng of reporters waiting for him.
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