Washington Capitals: Eleven Reasons To Be Thankful

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Mandatory Credit: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

The Future

With strengths and assets all over the ice and within the organization, it feels like this year could be fateful for the Washington Capitals. For the first time in a long time, we have depth on this team in all positions and plenty more arriving from the minor leagues. We have a dynamic mix of players – with superstars to grinders to enforcers and the responsible stay-at-home-defensive types combining into something excellent and difficult to beat on any given night. The Washington Capitals are a legitimate contender for the Stanley Cup.

There will always be room for improvement and we’ll continue to write about it in our analysis. But, if I’m honest: this is the most optimistic I’ve felt about a sports team in Washington since the early nineties. I’ve had good reason to keep that optimism guarded cautiously, but regardless of the outcome for this season, it’s been wonderful being a small part of it. I’m thankful that the Capitals have worked so hard to bring us these good vibrations this season.

There are a few quick ‘thank you’ shots that I’d like to make, so it’s bullet time:

  • The Caps Penalty Kill. For pulling us out of countless scary minutes of short ice and creating momentum.
  • Tom Wilson. For being the forward with the next highest block shot totals (14) and your effort on the PK.
  • Jay Beagle. For being one of the best two-way players on the team.
  • The Caps Power Play Units. For dominating the play while you’re out there. We look dangerous.
  • The 4th line. Whatever you’re doing, I think it’s working.
  • Dmitry Orlov. For re-introducing yourself to the team’s fans by scoring in three straight!
  • Nick Backstrom. We don’t need reasons.

Wherever you’re spending the holiday weekend, I hope you get to catch one of the two games the Capitals will play in this weekend. They’ll face the Tampa Bay Lightning on Friday at home in Verizon Center, which could prove to be an excellent Litmus test for the post-season. They’ll also travel to Toronto on Saturday to do battle with the Maple Leafs, with whom they barely squeaked out a win in the shootout in their last encounter in early November.

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Most of all, the entire Stars and Sticks staff is extremely thankful for each and every one of our loyal readers. It’s a pleasure writing for such a passionate and kind community.