Capitals 4, Golden Knights 3.
Vegas leads Washington 3-2 going into the third period after the two teams combined for five goals in a wild second period. The referees let the goal stand after reviewing the play.
Reilly Smith, with a goal and an assist, Nate Schmidt and David Perron replied for Vegas. George McPhee, who was sacked by the Washington Capitals in 2014 had more than a year to put together his staff and an entire season to scout every National Hockey League player that could become available in last year's expansion draft, and he really did his homework. Braden Holtby stopped 28 shots. "When you get so close to the Cup, to miss your chance, it's disappointing".
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. No one expected Vegas to get this far.
Jakub Vrana and Devante Smith-Pelly also scored for the Capitals.
As such, when the clock struck zero in Vegas, Capitals fans back in Washington D.C. went absolutely nuts. "We had a conversation and he was very respectful".
So after he took an emotional skate with the Stanley Cup, kissed it a few times, he handed it to his long-time teammate Nicklas Backstrom. He beat Marc-Andre Fleury on his glove side, sending the puck over his left elbow and into the net. There's nothing better than the first (except maybe the next).
The Arenas did it in the league's first ever postseason and Blues were part of a division comprised of all expansion teams in the late 1960s. Vegas is 7-3 in its last 10 home games as moneyline favorite of -135 to -200, according to the OddsShark NHL Database.
The Caps took advantage of a lucky bounce in game three to avoid being down 3-0 to the Jackets in the first round. He noted the turnaround seasons this year by Colorado and New Jersey. "That was pretty special", Trotz said.
A red sea of tens of thousands of fans boiled over in jubilation Thursday as the Washington Capitals won the Stanley Cup for the first time in team's 44-year history.
It marked the third scoreless period of the series.
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"I think we have great character in this room and we've shown it all season long", Golden Knights goalie Marc-Andre Fleury said.
If there were odds on blocked shots, I'd lay the house on Washington.
Among McPhee's other key acquisitions were former Nashville Predators forward James Neal, 30, who has had ten 20-goal seasons, and William Karlsson. For around a minute, the Capitals and Las Vegas Golden Knights fought it out with time being a mere theory. He gave up six goals in Game 4 of this series. Washington is the 19th active franchise to win the Stanley Cup. "I got my name on something so they'll know that dad played hockey when they grow up".
Even with a commanding series lead, the Caps all spoke of the importance of consistency and seizing the moment after their light workout.
Washington Capitals and left wing Alex Ovechkin (8) pose for a team photo with the Stanley Cup following game five of the 2018 Stanley Cup Final at T-Mobile Arena. We didn't get complacent once in this whole play-off.
Contratulations to the Washington Capitals, your 2018 Stanley Cup champions.
While past Washington teams have a long history of struggles in closeout games, these Caps have won all three of their potential closeout games.
For the Knights, the loss will sting, but also do nothing to the bond the team forged with its fanbase in the wake unspeakable evil on October 1 - some eight days before their first regular-season home game - when a gunman killed 58 people and injured hundreds more at an outdoor concert just over a kilometre from T-Mobile Arena.
They had to revamp the roster last season because of salary cap concerns, and general manager Brian MacLellan wasn't sure what he had after he added some grit here and there and had to trust young players. They won the Final opener, but have been outscored 12-5 since.
"Since Day 1 of training camp, we really play for each other, we work for each other and we really try to help the young guys, older guys - it doesn't matter", Kuznetsov said.
The NHL will give the first Willie O'Ree Community Hero Award later this month in Las Vegas.