Leading up to the Capitals banner-raising ceremony on October 3, we’ll be sharing content from the summer that we never got around to publishing. This series is entitled Stanley Cup stories.
Three days after the Washington Capitals vanquished the Vegas Golden Knights in five games and secured the franchise’s first Stanley Cup, the team made its first public appearance in Washington DC.
Alex Ovechkin was scheduled to throw out the first pitch ahead of a Washington Nationals game, but little was known about how the team would be honored or what they’d be doing with the Stanley Cup.
Up to that point, the DMV area was desperate to celebrate with the team and they finally got their first chance approximately ten minutes before the first pitch of the Giants and Nationals.
The Capitals, including majority owner Ted Leonsis, team president Dick Patrick, and head coach Barry Trotz, lined up in the stairs leading to the Nationals clubhouse. And then everyone waited. As the anticipation of the Capitals’ appearance grew, a loud Let’s Go Caps! chant rang across the stadium. The sound hit me on the field like a sack of potatoes.
Eventually, Nationals PA announcer Jerome Hruska introduced DC’s first championship-winning team in over two decades, and Ovechkin walked the Cup up the dugout steps to a loud ovation. His teammates, who appeared ragged from days of intense partying, followed in tow.