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posted on 8-10-2018 at 03:15 AM
s a sweep in their fir
The Washington Capitals will play for a Stanley Cup championship Thursday night for the first time in 43 NHL seasons. Alex Ovechkin is one win away
from carving his name into history at the peak of his incredible hockey career.
With a 3-1 lead in the Stanley Cup Final and a city thousands of miles away thirsting for its first championship in a generation http://www.49ersauthorizedshops.com/authentic-fred-warner-jersey , the Vegas stakes are awfully high for the Caps in Game 5.
Ovi still wants his teammates thinking about the Golden Knights, not that silver trophy.
”To be honest, I think most of us have never been in this position,” said Ovechkin, who could become the first Russian captain to raise the Cup.
”For me personally, I don’t try to think about it too much what’s going on and just try focusing on different things. But it’s hard.”
Exactly what could distract an athlete of Ovechkin’s magnitude from the imminent chance to validate his place in his sport?
”Whatever. Cars. Hotels. You know, Vegas.”
Indeed, this desert is a strange place to end a drought. But with three chances to get one win, Ovechkin and his teammates want to seize their very
first opportunity for the clincher on the Las Vegas ice.
With one more victory, Ovechkin would finally have team success to complement his formidable individual accomplishments. The vaunted goal-scorer can
also succeed where a generation of Washington athletes have fallen short by leading the Capitals to their first title and the city’s first major pro
sports championship in a quarter-century.
With his 33rd birthday looming in the fall http://www.packersauthorizedshops.com/authentic-jk-scott-jersey , Ovechkin understands the opportunity before him and the
magnitude of the situation for everyone who has ever worn the Capitals’ jersey.
It’s enough to tighten anybody’s grip on the stick, but the Caps didn’t appear overly tight during their workout or in the dressing room
”It’s a great time,” Ovechkin said Wednesday. ”Probably the best time in my life, hockey-wise. We just enjoy it together, this moment. It’s
Even with a commanding series lead, the Caps all spoke of the importance of consistency and seizing the moment after their light workout. Washington
has a shockingly lengthy franchise history of playoff collapses, but these Caps promptly won all three potential closeout games in their first three
playoff series this spring.
”Maybe because we’ve talked about it so much,” Caps defenseman John Carlson said. ”Guys are sick of hearing about it from the meetings. Sick
of not getting it done. They all kind of blend together, but I think we have come out with great efforts every closing-out game, and we’re going to
need a big one. This is a good team at home. It’s going to take a really good effort to get it done.”
The Caps don’t have the luxury of thinking about the minor disappointment of not being at home to secure Washington’s first championship in a
major pro sport since the Redskins’ Super Bowl victory in January 1992. Back home in D.C. http://www.billsauthorizedshops.com/authentic-marshall-newhouse-jersey , fans will be cheering on their team at Capital One
Arena in a watch party that sold out in about 20 minutes.
”I think the history of the organization is definitely an important thing, but we’re focused on this group,” Washington’s Tom Wilson said.
”We’re focused on this year, and obviously once all is said and done or whatever happens, you can look back on it. We want to do it for the city.
We want to do it for ourselves.”
So far in this series, the Caps have done just about everything well. Washington has scored 16 goals in four games against the reeling Golden Knights,
whose charmed expansion season has run short of magic in three consecutive losses.
While the Caps focused on changing nothing from their last three efforts, the Golden Knights also don’t believe they need a wholesale change. Coach
Gerard Gallant’s team is banking on the resilience of a group that hasn’t lost four consecutive games at any point in their utterly charmed
”It’s not the first adversity we’ve faced this year,” forward Jonathan Marchessault said. ”You’d rather have the odds in your favor, but
I’m thinking about (Game 5). If you start thinking that we have to win three games Alex McGough Color Rush Jersey , sometimes it gets
demoralizing. We’re just focused on the next one. … They’re in a better situation than us, that’s for sure. Stuff we’ve done this year has
never been done, so I think that’s what we’re thinking about.”
More Stanley Cup coverage:
OAKLAND, Calif. — The Golden State Warriors seek to go up 2-0 over the New Orleans Pelicans in their Western Conference semifinal series on Tuesday
night and just might get some help in doing so.
Star point guard Stephen Curry is listed as probable in his quest to return from a 5 1/2-week absence as the Warriors go for their 14th consecutive
home win in postseason play.
Riding 27 points from Klay Thompson, 26 from Kevin Durant and a stifling defense that limited the Pelicans to 40 points in the middle two quarters,
the Warriors won the best-of-seven opener 123-101 on Saturday.
Curry, who had hoped to be cleared for Game 1, worked out with the club Monday.
Afterward, while insisting that no formal decision would be made until after pregame warmups Tuesday, Warriors coach Steve Kerr announced the team’s
leading scorer would have no minutes restriction in his first game since suffering a sprained left MCL on March 23.
“It’s exciting; I’m excited John Tavares
Maple Leafs Jersey ,” said backcourt mate Klay Thompson, whose game-high point total and defense on Pelicans backcourt star Jrue Holiday were
equally important in the Game 1 win. “I feel like a fan. I can’t wait to see him out there.
“He’s looks ready as ever.”
That’s certainly not good news for the Pelicans, as the last three times Curry returned from an injury this season he scored 38, 24 and 29 points in
an average of 28.3 minutes in his first game back.
New Orleans also is seeking a different look than the one that saw Anthony Davis post his lowest point total since March 30 and Holiday his lowest
since April 9. They were held to 21 and 11 points, respectively, in Game 1.
Davis and Holiday went to the free throw line six times and the Pelicans just 11, allowing the Warriors to enjoy a 24-9 advantage in points scored at
the foul line. Golden State attempted 32 free throws.
The career-low four trips to the line was especially odd for Davis, who had averaged 9.3 in his first eight career playoff games.
“You can try to get to the foul line. It’s tough when you’re playing the world champs,” Holiday said. “Honestly, we can try all we want to.
We felt like some of the calls could’ve gone our way last game; they didn’t.”
Davis has 10 rebounds to go with his 21 points Preston Tucker Atlanta Braves Jersey , posting his fifth straight double-double this season. New Orleans eliminated Portland in
the first round, becoming the first sixth seed to sweep a third seed in NBA playoff history.
New Orleans got off to a hot start in Game 1, taking as much as a 21-16 lead while shooting 60 percent in the first quarter.
But the Warriors tightened the defensive screws in the second and third periods, limiting the visitors to 16-of-51 shooting (31 percent) while running
off to as many as a 31-point lead before the third period ended.
The win was the Warriors’ 25th in their last 27 meetings with the Pelicans, a run that includes a sweep in their first-round playoff matchup in
Golden State has gone 11-2 in Game 2s, all at home, since the beginning of the 2015 playoffs.