Washington Capitals’ Long, Strange Trip to the NHL Playoffs

April 6th, 2012 by Robert Wood Leave a reply »
If you had told me before the 2011-12 NHL season that the Washington Capitals would not clinch a playoff spot until the second-to-last game of the year and that they would not know their playoff seeding until the very last game, I would've had one thing to say: 

You're crazy. 

Now, as the regular season comes to a close, I would have one more thing to say: 

You were right.  

Experts predicted the 2011-12 Washington Capitals would contend for the Stanley Cup.  No one predicted they would start the season 7-0, only to go 5-9-1 in the next 15 games.  No one predicted captain Alex Ovechkin would be benched during a critical moment of an early season game or that he would disrespect head coach Bruce Boudreau on national television. 

No one predicted Boudreau would be fired by Thanksgiving, almost four years to the day after he was hired.  No one predicted he would be replaced by Capitals legend Dale Hunter, who had only coached at the junior hockey level.  No one predicted former All-Stars Mike Green and Nicklas Backstrom would each miss at least half of the season with majo ...

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