The Washington Capitals are coming off a very successful season in 2014-2015 that saw them reach the second round of the playoffs. They were a disallowed goal in game five of the Eastern Conference Semifinals away from reaching the Eastern Conference Finals for the first time since the magical 1997-1998 season. While it sure wasn’t an ideal way to end the season for the Washington Capitals, fans were proud of the team.
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Fast forward three months. The Washington Capitals have upgraded the team immensely. They traded for T.J. Oshie, who should prove to be the elusive first line wing that they’ve been searching for. To get him, they only had to give up surplus forward Troy Brouwer, a third round pick, and goalie prospect Pheonix Copley, who likely had no chance of making an impact with the Washington Capitals to begin with. They also signed free agent forward Justin Williams, who is widely known as “Mister Game Seven” to further improve their top six forwards. General Manager Brian MacLellan topped off his off-season by signing restricted free agents Marcus Johansson, Evgeny Kuznetsov and Braden Holtby. While the Caps lost Eric Fehr, Joel Ward, Mike Green and Brouwer this off-season, one must admit that they are an extremely well balanced team.
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The 2015 Capitals are arguably the best team that they’ve ever had, and certainly the best since at least 2010-2011. Will they be able to do with the 1997-1998 Caps and 2009-2010 Caps were unable to do by winning the Stanley Cup? The Capitals have as good of a chance as anyone and one could argue that they are the Stanley Cup favorites. There are five reasons why the Caps have a great shot at winning it all in 2015.