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May 12

Monumental Collapse

There’s really no way to say this without being blunt. The efforts of the Washington Capitals were awful in game 7. Everyone is all too familiar with this feeling. Year, after year, after year. The same thing happens. A lot of us should just be used to it by now.

Early in the series, Marc-Andre Fleury decided to be good at hockey again. Washington had zero success against Fleury in the first two games. Pittsburgh would end up taking both on the road. Yikes. Going down 2-0, headed back to Pittsburgh is never the ideal situation. However, the Caps ended up stealing game 3, so there wasn’t exactly panic for the time being. However, Pittsburgh ended up taking game 4 at home, so the Penguins were up 3-1 in the series. You know, the now infamous “3-1 lead” meme.

Realizing they had to step it up quick, Washington took game 5 at home, and ended up exploding offensively in game 6, which tied the series 3-3. Panic time for Pittsburgh? Penguins fans were terrified that they were going to be the next internet meme. Washington had nearly all of the momentum headed back home for game 7. Things were looking good. Until old habits came back.

It goes without saying that Washington is awful in game 7. Moments like 2009, 2010, 2012, 2013, 2015, came to mind. No luck at all. Players have said that the narrative was going to change, but the performance said otherwise. In short, the effort Wednesday night resulted in the Capitals being shutout. At home. Also, fans had had enough, and basically booed the team off the ice. Which was deserving. Braden Holtby was the only one that had any desire to win.

Pittsburgh won the series 4-3 and will play the Ottawa Senators in the Eastern Conference Final. Where have we seen this before? Another great regular season wasted by a poor playoff performance, leading to another second round exit.

Maybe next year.

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