Lars Eller scored the tiebreaking goal with 7:37 to play, and the Capitals raised the Stanley Cup for the first time in franchise history after a 4-3 victory over the Vegas Golden Knights in Game 5 on Thursday night.
The Capitals' previous best result was recorded 20 years ago, when they reached the 1998 Stanley Cup final only to lose four straight games in a best-of-seven series to the Detroit Red Wings. If they can get the win it would secure their first Stanley Cup in franchise history.
Capitals coach Barry Trotz is on the brink of winning his first Cup, in his 19th season as a head coach, his fourth in Washington. "I think the big thing about our group is if we can stay out of the box and roll four lines, then we're going to be in good shape".
"You should be a role model", Cherry said at the time. "Yeah, they're a great team, but at the same time we've been off a little bit and slacking defensively and through the neutral zone".
- The Capitals have scored three or more goals in each of the first four games of this series while allowing a total of five goals in the past three games.
According to oddsmakers, the Golden Knights are a -145 favorite on the moneyline.
Evgeny Kuznetsov is having a historic Stanley Cup playoffs, with 31 points in 23 games.
Players on the Golden Knights called themselves the "Golden Misfits" since the roster was comprised of mostly depth players deemed expendable by their former teams through an expansion draft that was tweaked to make the team competitive.
Nate Schmidt and David Perron also scored deflection goals for Vegas in the second period, but Fleury's 29 saves included a stopped puck that dropped underneath him where Eller could sweep it home for the Cup-winning goal.
T.J Oshie celebrates with teammate Shane Gersich after claiming the championship. "I've never seen a team come together like we did here". We felt that nearly right from the get-go. Caps' Jakub Vrana got things started at 6:24 in the first on a breakaway goal for his third of the playoffs.
The 13-year-old comparison revved up again Thursday night, since Ovechkin and Crosby are now the only two players since 2005 with 15 playoff goals in a single spring.
The Golden Knights' ascent began about a year ago, when they selected one player from each team in the National Hockey League expansion draft. The NFL's Philadelphia Eagles won their first Super Bowl in February, and baseball's Houston Astros won their first World Series last November.
The victory capped a storybook year for the Capitals after years of disappointment and postseason failures, and solidified Ovechkin's status among some of the all-time greats with the first championship of his career. When the horn finally sounds, Ovechkin hopped off the bench in glee, joining his teammates in a huge pile of thrown sticks and helmets by the end boards. With Vegas this season, he's had a breakout year, scoring 43 goals and picking up 35 assists in the regular season, and seven goals and eight assists in playoffs. "We have been waiting a long, long time, since day one". "We knew we could do something special and we did". Eller battled for position near the crease and after Fleury stopped a shot from Brett Connolly, the puck fell right behind the netminder.