Washington D.C. has been waiting 44 years, and Alex Ovechkin has been waiting 13 seasons, but now fans and players can finally celebrate the Washington Capitals winning the NHL Stanley Cup for the first time in the franchise’s history. On Thursday night in Las Vegas, after coming back from a one-goal deficit, the Washington Capitals beat the Vegas Golden Knights 4-3 to win the coveted Stanley Cup. Beating Vegas in four out of five games, Washington only lost one game during the finals. This is the first championship for Washington since the Redskins won the Super Bowl at the end of the ’91 season, and fans in D.C. went nuts.
Alex Ovechkin was seen after the game screaming in celebration and seemingly in disbelief before he put his hands on the oldest existing trophy for a professional sports team, the Stanley Cup. As CBS Sports reported, “Ovi” scored the goal during a power-play that put the Capitals back on top, and “Great Eight” won the well-deserved Conn Smythe Trophy for his MVP performance.
With a career 1,003 games played, 607 goals, 515 assists, and winning the Rocket Richard Trophy (awarded to the leading goal scorer of the NHL) seven times, Alex Ovechkin is one of the all-time greatest players in modern NHL history. But the grandest prize in the league has eluded the stellar player, until now.
As Sports Illustrated reported, and as seen in the video below, “Ovi” and his wife are expecting their first child. In a post-game interview, the player said that the emotions were unbelievable. He remarked that he can’t imagine what’s happening back in Washington, that the fans were going to be crazy, and that he’s happy for the organization and his team.
Game 5 of the Stanley Cup Final was in Las Vegas, but you wouldn't know that from the crowd inside and outside Capital One Arena in Washington. pic.twitter.com/iHbTDXaJA2— USA TODAY Sports (@usatodaysports) June 8, 2018
As Sports Illustrated documented, Ovechkin was very gracious to his fans and teammates as he shared words of celebration.
“It’s unbelievable. I’m just happy…Fans, we did it. Get some beers. Start celebrating. We’re the Stanley Cup champions.”
Emotions were high for both fans and players alike on Thursday night. As USA Today reported, Washington Capitals winger T.J. Oshie was moved to tears while talking about his dad, who was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease in 2012, during a post-game interview.
“My dad. Oh boy. He doesn’t remember a lot of stuff these days, but he remembers enough. I tell you what—he’s here tonight. But this one will stick with him forever. You can guarantee that.”
Oshie and his dad, Tim. Sometimes a picture really is worth 1,000 words. pic.twitter.com/BiGQ1c0EAm— Frank Seravalli (@frank_seravalli) June 8, 2018
T.J. Oshie got to lift the Stanley Cup with his dad, who has Alzheimer’s. What a moment. pic.twitter.com/BxEeASlMot— Amalie Benjamin (@AmalieBenjamin) June 8, 2018
Thursday night was an emotional night for players and fans when the Washington Capitals were announced the 2018 Stanley Cup champions.