Ice Hockey Wiki
Washington Capitals
Conference Eastern
Division Metropolitan
Founded 1974
History Washington Capitals
1974 – present
Arena Capital One Arena
City Washington, D.C.
Team Colors Red, White, Blue
Media NBC Sports Washington
Federal News Radio (1500 AM)
The Fan (106.7 FM)
Owner(s) Monumental Sports & Entertainment
(Ted Leonsis, chairman)
General Manager Flag of Canada Brian MacLellan
Head Coach Flag of the United States Peter Laviolette
Captain Flag of Russia Alexander Ovechkin
Minor League affiliates Hershey Bears (AHL)
South Carolina Stingrays (ECHL)
Stanley Cups 1 (2017–18)
Presidents' Trophies 3 (2009–10, 2015–16, 2016–17)
Conferences 2 (1997-98, 2017-18)
Divisions 13 (1988–89, 1999–00, 2000–01, 2007–08, 2008-09, 2009-10, 2010–11, 2012–13, 2015–16, 2016–17, 2017–18, 2018-19, 2019-20)
Official Website
Home ice
Washington Capitals ice rink logo.gif

The Washington Capitals are a professional ice hockey team based in Washington, D.C. They are members of the Metropolitan Division of the Eastern Conference of the National Hockey League (NHL). Since their founding in 1974, "The Caps" have won two conference championships (1998 and 2018), and captured eleven division titles. In 1997, the team moved their home hockey rink from the suburban Capital Centre to the new Verizon Center in Washington's Chinatown neighborhood. Former AOL executive Ted Leonsis has owned the team since 1999, and has revitalized the franchise by drafting star players such as Alexander Ovechkin, Nicklas Backstrom, Mike Green, and Alexander Semin, and head coach Barry Trotz. The Capitals won Presidents' Trophy three times for the league's best record during the regular season. On June 7, 2018, the team won their first Stanley Cup over the Vegas Golden Knights.


The bleeding era

The Capitals joined the National Hockey League as an expansion team for the 1974-75 NHL season, along with the Kansas City Scouts. Originally, they were owned by Abe Pollin who also owned the Washington Bullets of the NBA. He had a new arena built in Landover, Maryland, a suburb of Washington, in order to house both the Caps and the Bullets. With Milt Schmidt as the franchise's first general manager and Jim Anderson as its first head coach, the Caps made their debuts in 1974.

With the NHL hastily planting new teams in new cities in order to counter the World Hockey Association, who were acting similarly, a shortage of highly skilled players had to be expected. The Atlanta Flames and New York Islanders had previously had to deal with such a shortage two years before; by the time the Caps and Scouts arrived, the situation was even worse. As a result, both teams were filled with players who, for the most part, lacked professional experience; this situation was obviously a disadvantage against the sixteen other teams in the league. As a result, the Capitals' inaugural season was a real nightmare. Dreadful even by expansion standards, the Caps finished the season with a dismal 8–67–5 record, good for 21 points, far and away the worst record in the league. Even their fellow Scouts, who were all but stellar themselves, could still manage twice as many points during that time. The .131 winning percentage still holds as the all-time NHL's worst winning percentage in history. Among the other sad records they established, were the record for the most road losses (39 out of 40), most consecutive road losses (37) and most consecutive losses. If the first two records still last as of today, the latter was tied by the 1992–93 San Jose Sharks. Coach Anderson said: "I'd rather find out my wife was cheating on me than keep losing like this. At least I could tell my wife to cut it out." Anderson stepped out before the end of the season; Milt Schmidt found himself replacing him behind the bench late in the season.

1975-76 was barely better than the previous. With 25 straight games without a win and a 394 goals against record, the Capitals were en route to a 11–59–10 record, good for 32 points. Max McNab was hired as GM during the season, and Tom McVie took the coaching job. Greg Joly, the 1974 NHL Amateur Draft's first pick overall, who was expected to become a franchise player, failed to live up to the expectations and was dealt to the Detroit Red Wings after the season. Washington fared little better during the next few seasons; they would alternate between dreadful seasons and promising ones where they'd finish just a few points out of the playoffs. But this era, no matter how futile on the ice, had one bright spot. With all the bad seasons and the early draft picks, McNab selected several excellent players (Rick Green, Ryan Walter, Mike Gartner, Bengt-Ake Gustafsson, Gaetan Duchesne and Bobby Carpenter, to name a few) who would change the face of the team in the 1980's, whether by their performance on the ice or by their involvement in major trades. However, the team's overall horrendous performances made talks of a move away from the US capital very serious by the end of 1982; something had to be done to keep the team home. A "Save the Caps" campaign was underway, and two significant events changed the franchise's destiny.

Playoffs time

The first such event was the hiring of David Poile as general manager. The second was the first move he did. Poile managed to pull off one of the biggest trade in the history of the Capitals on September 9th 1982 by trading Rick Green and Ryan Walter, who were both long time regulars in Washington, to the Montreal Canadiens for Rod Langway, Brian Engblom, Doug Jarvis and Craig Laughlin.

This move literally turned the Caps into another team. Langway's reliability on the blue line solved one of the problems of the team: its enormous number of goals against. The arrival of Scott Stevens, drafted in the 1982 NHL Entry Draft, also was a key factor. At the other end of the ice, Dennis Maruk, Mike Gartner and Bobby Carpenter went into a goal-scoring frenzy, solving another of the Caps problems. The result was no less than a 29 points jump, which propelled the Caps to a third place in the powerful Patrick Division - this strong result ensured them a first time playoffs participation in almost a decade of existence. They fell to the three-time-defending Stanley Cup champions, the New York Islanders, but still, that was one giant step in the right direction, a step that was enough to shut all the moving talks.

Following this era of mediocrity came a new era of regular season abundance, which had them participate in the playoffs for the next fourteen seasons. If the team usually started the season prety slowly, the Capitals usually ignited in January or February. But regular season success is not warrant of playoffs success; the Caps illustrated it well by failing to advance very far in the playoffs. The Capitals did not lack star players, with the likes of Gartner, Carpenter, Langway, Gustafsson, Mike Ridley, Dave Christian, Dino Ciccarelli, Larry Murphy or Kevin Hatcher, but they still were knocked out of the playoffs in the first or second round of the playoffs for eight years in a row. This resulted in some heartbreaking moments, such as 1985-86, where the team, after finishing the season with 50 wins and 107 points, both franchise records, were kicked out of the playoffs by the New York Rangers in the second round.

The next season, another such moment happened, perhaps even a worse one than the previous season, when Washington faced the Islanders in the Patrick Division Semifinal. This series was capped off by a classic, the Easter Epic game, which ended at 1:56 am on Easter Sunday 1987. After a thorough domination by the Capitals, who outshoot New York 75-52, they still lost in overtime after goaltender Bob Mason let a blue line shot by Pat Lafontaine in. With Gartner and Murphy traded to the Minnesota North Stars for Ciccarelli and Bob Rouse, the Caps underwent the 1989 NHL playoffs with confidence, but again faltered due to poor goaltending, which led to a first round ousting by the Philadelphia Flyers. They finally reached the Wales Conference in 1990, only to be swept in four games by the Boston Bruins.

The 1990's: a continuing story

New stars were on the rise in Washington in the 1990's. Forwards Peter Bondra and Joé Juneau and defenceman Sergei Gonchar joined an aging core of players, hoping to bring the Caps to the ultimate goal. In 1993, Washington was favourite for a win over the Islanders in the first round, yet were upset in six games. The Isles' win was darkened by a gesture from Dale Hunter, who out of frustration checked by behind New York's Pierre Turgeon after he had scored the series-clinching goal. Turgeon awkwardly fell on the ice and suffered a separated shoulder; he had to miss the second round against the Pittsburgh Penguins. This move earned Hunter a 21 games suspension, to be served from the first game of next season. At the time, no suspension for an on-ice incident had ever lasted that long in NHL history.

A first championship: the Eastern Conference's

In 1998, after 24 years of existence, the Capitals, led by a strong 52 goals season by Peter Bondra, by Hunter, Juneau and Adam Oates who retrieved their youth's form and Olaf Kölzig who maintained a solid .920 save percentage, finally managed to achieve an appearance in the Stanley Cup finals. The Capitals defeated the Bruins, the Ottawa Senators and the Buffalo Sabres en route to their first (and to date only) Stanley Cup finals appearance. In order to achieve this, they had to win six overtime goals (three against both Boston and Buffalo). But this proved not enough, and the Detroit Red Wings swept them in four games.

That same season, Oates, Phil Housley, and Dale Hunter all scored their 1,000th career point, the only time in NHL history that one team had 3 different players reach that same milestone in a single season.

A rebuilding

In 1999, the very year after participating to the Stanley Cup finals, Washington missed the playoffs. Injuries had plagued the team throughout the season. They bounced back the next season, though; they went to win back-to-back Southeast Division titles in 2000 and 2001. Still, both times they fell in the first round to the Penguins. Following the second such occurence, Adam Oates demanded to be traded. The management refused, however; they went even further and stripped him from his captaincy.

Hoping to put an end to their playoffs problems, the Capitals traded three young prospects (Kris Beech, Michal Sivek, and Ross Lupaschuk) to the Pittsburgh Penguins for Jaromír Jágr. The five-time Art Ross Trophy winner signed the most lucrative contract in NHL history: $77 millions over seven years (11 millions per season, or approximately $134,000 per game), with an option on an eighth year. However, Jágr failed to live up to the expectations and the Capitals failed not only to defend their division title but also to make the playoffs, and that, despite a winning record. The presence of the superstar however drew record crowds; an average of 17,341 fans showed up every game, and at the end of the season, it's 710,990 fans who attended to the Caps games.

In the summer of 2002, more roster changes were made in order to make it to the Stanley Cup. They signed highly regarded Czech Robert Lang as a free agent, reuniting him with his Pittsburgh teammante Jágr. At first, it seemed to have worked. Washington was back to the playoffs in 2003. They met the Tampa Bay Lightning in the first round and gave themselves a 2-0 lead in the series after two matches. Still, they managed to lose the series in six games; game six went into triple overtime at the MCI Center; Washington lost on a power play goal, a power play caused by a blunder by Jason Doig who skated on the ice too early, resulting in a too-many-men-on-the-ice penalty against the Caps.

Return to the abysses

In 2003-04, the Caps unloaded a lot of their very costly talent. That was a cost-cutting spree, but also an acknowledgement that they had failed at building a Stanley Cup contender team by signing high-priced veterans. Jágr was a disappointment in Washington, failing to figure among the top scorers of the league or be included in the All-Star Team during his Captials tenure. The Caps did try to trade him, but due to his salary, no team was willing to pay so much for an underperformer, especially since there was only a year left to the current CBA (Collective Bargain Agreement). In 2004, the Capitals could finally get rid of him, sending him to the New York Rangers for Anson Carter and an agreement that Washington would pay approximately four million dollars per year of Jagr's salary, with Jagr himself agreeing to defer (with interest) $1 million per year for the remainder of his contract to allow the trade to go ahead. Soon afterwards, Bondra was dealt to the Senators, Lang left for Detroit and Gonchar to Boston. Lang's trade marked the first time in the history of the National Hockey League that the league's leading scorer was traded in the middle of the season. The Capitals ended the year 23–46–10–6, tied for the second worst record, along with the Chicago Blackhawks.

Alexander Ovechkin in 2009

Luck smiled upon the Capitals in 2004. They won the Draft Lottery allowing them to select first overall in the 2004 NHL Entry Draft. They selected Alexander Ovechkin with this pick. With the 2004-05 NHL season completely lost due to the labor dispute between the league and the players, Ovechkin stayed in Russia with Dynamo Moscow. Several other Caps capitalized on the lost season to go play part or all of the season in Europe; these players include Olaf Kölzig (Eisbären Berlin), Brendan Witt (Bracknell Bees) and Jeff Halpern (EHC Kloten and HC Ajoie). In the 2005 summer, they signed Andrew Cassels, Ben Clymer, Mathieu Biron and Jamie Heward and acquired Chris Clark and Jeff Friesen via trade.

The 2005-06 season was filled with promise. They once again were bottom dwellers as they finished the season dead last in the Southeastern Division once again, finishing the season with an unimpressive 29-41-12 record (a 12 points improvement from 2003-04). The Caps still finished 27th overall in the league. However, there were many bright sides that led to think that Washington's pain was something that would end in the near future. Even though they lost more than half of their games, they always fought bitterly to win and were very rarely outclassed - in fact, 42 of the Caps' games were one-goal games. But the brightest spot on the Caps' roster was Alexander Ovechkin. In his rookie season, he finished third overall in scoring (and in goals scored) in the league, scoring 52 goals and collecting 106 points, the kind of performance that had gotten extremely rare for rookies in the modern NHL. He established an NHL rookie record with 425 shots (he was league leader in that chapter) and finished in the books as having given the Caps' second best ever performance by a rookie and his goal total was tied for third best in the team's history. Such dominance was rightly so crowned by the Calder Memorial Trophy, beating another much-hyped player, Sidney Crosby, and defenceman Dion Phaneuf.

His teammates also enjoyed good moments. Lithuanian Dainius Zubrus earned a career-high 57 points, while Jeff Halpern established a personnal mark for assists (33), Matt Pettinger for goals and points (20 and 38, respectively), while several of the younger players on the roster reached the 20 points mark for the first time in their careers. Veteran Olaf Kölzig earned a 250th win in the Caps' nets, while Andrew Cassels became the 204th player to suit play 1,000 NHL games. To make things better, Jeff Halpern, a native of the Washington area, was named captain during the season, a nice first for the team. A notable departure occured on March 8th, on the trade deadline, when Brendan Witt was traded to the Nashville Predators.

2008: Start of a Dynasty

After a disappointing 6-14-1 start in 2007-08, in which the Capitals saw then-head coach Glen Hanlon be fired, the Capitals made a historic turnaround. Winning 11 of their last 12 games, the Bruce Boudreau-lead Caps came back to win the Southeast Division thanks in part to Alex Ovechkin's 65 goal season, the most ever by a left winger in a single campaign. The year ended with a 4-3 series loss to the Philadelphia Flyers, losing on an OT goal in Game 7.

The following two years saw the Capitals produce franchise records in points. In 2008-09, Washington went 50-24-8 for 108 points and back-to-back Southeast titles. It ended in the semifinals at the hands of the Pittsburgh Penguins, losing the series four games to three. The next season, the Capitals light up the scoreboard game after game, scoring a gaudy 313 goals, the most in the NHL, and accumulate 121 points at 54-15-13. Despite Stanley Cup hopes, the Caps were stunned in the quarterfinals, falling to the Montreal Canadiens four games to three. Jaroslav Halák shined in net the final three games for the Canadiens, holding the Caps to one goal each game.

In 2010-11, Washington claimed their fourth consecutive division title and Eastern Conference regular season champions with 107 points at 48–23–11. After rolling over the New York Rangers four games to one in Round 1, they were swept by the Tampa Bay Lightning, still unable to reach the conference finals despite all the Southeast titles.

The following year, the Capitals had a promising 7-0-0 start, but they won only 5 of the next 15 games, leading to the firing of Bruce Boudreau, and the hiring of former Cap Dale Hunter. With a new defensive system in mind, the inconsistent Caps could not keep pace with Florida for the Southeast crown and settled for seventh in the east with 92 points. Joel Ward scored an OT goal in Game 7 of the first round against the Boston Bruins, yet Washington was stymied again, falling to the hands of the New York Rangers 4-3.

Following the conclusion of the Stanley Cup, Hunter announced his resignation from the team, prompting George McPhee to hire another former Capital great, Adam Oates, as the next head coach.

Logos and Jerseys

The Capitals took to the ice in red, white and blue jerseys featuring contrast-colored shoulders and stars on the chest and sleeves. The team originally had red, white, and blue pants options, but quickly retired white pants. The blue pants would eventually become the only option used.

The Capitals unveiled new uniforms on June 22, 2007, which coincided with the NHL Entry Draft and the new League-wide adaptation of the Reebok-designed uniform system for 2007–08. The change marked a return to the red, white and blue color scheme originally used from 1974 to 1995.[11] The new primary logo is reminiscent of the original Capitals' logo, complete with a hockey stick formed by the letter "t"; it also includes a new feature not present in the original logo in the form of three stars representing D.C., Maryland and Virginia.More simply, the stars are a reference to the flag of Washington, D.C., which is in turn based on the shield of George Washington's family coat of arms. The new alternate logo uses an eagle in the shape of a "W" with the silhouette of the United States Capitol building in the negative space below.

For the 2011 NHL Winter Classic, the Capitals wore a white jersey honoring the franchise's past with the original logo. The jersey resembled the one the franchise wore from 1974 to 1995. Instead of wearing the combination of blue pants and white helmets the team used when it played at the Capital Centre, the Capitals chose red pants and helmets for the New Year's Day game.[13] The Capitals wore the same jersey, minus the NHL Winter Classic patch, on February 1, 2011, to honor Hockey Hall of Fame winger Dino Ciccarelli.

The Capitals announced on September 16, 2011, that they would wear a third jersey modeled after the Winter Classic jersey for 16 road games during the 2011–12 season.

For the 2015 Winter Classic, which took place on New Years Day at Nationals Park in Washington, D.C., the Capitals wore a newly designed jersey intended to pay homage to hockey's outdoor roots. The primary color of the jersey was a vintage deep red. The addition of stripes on the shoulders, waist and legs brought in elements of Washington's professional hockey jerseys from the 1930s, predating the Capitals franchise's formation in the 1970s. A large "W" on the front of the jersey, topped with the common three stars, offset in blue to contrast the white "Capitals" word-mark.

Starting with the 2015–16 season, the Capitals will wear their throwback red third jerseys, replacing the white Winter Classic thirds.

Prior to the 2017–18 season, the NHL announced a new partnership with Adidas, and the Capitals unveiled new uniforms with minor changes. There were no third jerseys that season, but the return of the program in the 2018–19 season saw the return of the Capitals' red throwback uniforms as their alternates.

For the 2018 Stadium Series, the Capitals used newly-designed navy uniforms, honoring the fact that the game was held at the U.S. Naval Academy. The chest logo was based on the regular stylized “Capitals” logo, but shortened to “Caps”, the nickname commonly used for the team. There were also features honoring various aspects of D.C., as well as the presence of a slightly altered W logo from the 2015 Winter Classic on the pants.

Year by year

Year by year listing of all seasons played by the Washington Capitals
NHL season Capitals season Conference Division Regular season[1][2] Postseason
Finish GP W L T OT Pts GF GA GP W L GF GA Result
1974–75 1974–75 Wales Norris 5th 80 8 67 5 21 181 446 Did not qualify
1975–76 1975–76 Wales Norris 5th 80 11 59 10 32 224 394 Did not qualify
1976–77 1976–77 Wales Norris 4th 80 24 42 14 62 221 307 Did not qualify
1977–78 1977–78 Wales Norris 5th 80 17 49 14 48 195 321 Did not qualify
1978–79 1978–79 Wales Norris 4th 80 24 41 15 63 273 338 Did not qualify
1979–80 1979–80 Wales Patrick 5th 80 27 40 13 67 261 293 Did not qualify
1980–81 1980–81 Wales Patrick 5th 80 26 36 18 70 286 317 Did not qualify
1981–82 1981–82 Wales Patrick 5th 80 26 41 13 65 319 338 Did not qualify
1982–83 1982–83 Wales Patrick 3rd 80 39 25 16 94 306 283 4 1 3 11 19 Lost Division Semifinals to New York Islanders, 1–3[3]
1983–84 1983–84 Wales Patrick 2nd 80 48 27 5 101 308 226 8 4 4 28 25 Won Division Semifinals vs. Philadelphia Flyers, 3–0
Lost Division Finals to New York Islanders, 1–4[4]
1984–85 1984–85 Wales Patrick 2nd 80 46 25 9 101 322 240 5 2 3 12 14 Lost Division Semifinals to New York Islanders, 2–3[5]
1985–86 1985–86 Wales Patrick 2nd 80 50 23 7 107 315 272 9 5 4 36 24 Won Division Semifinals vs. New York Islanders, 3–0
Lost Division Finals to New York Rangers, 2–4[6]
1986–87 1986–87 Wales Patrick 2nd 80 38 32 10 86 285 278 7 3 4 19 19 Lost Division Semifinals to New York Islanders, 3–4[7]
1987–88 1987–88 Wales Patrick 2nd 80 38 33 9 85 281 249 14 7 7 54 50 Won Division Semifinals vs. Philadelphia Flyers, 4–3
Lost Division Finals to New Jersey Devils, 3–4[8]
1988–89 1988–89 Wales PatrickDivision champions 1st 80 41 29 10 92 305 259 6 2 4 18 25 Lost Division Semifinals to Philadelphia Flyers, 2–4[9]
1989–90 1989–90 Wales Patrick 3rd 80 36 38 6 78 284 275 15 8 7 49 48 Won Division Semifinals vs. New Jersey Devils, 4–2
Won Division Finals vs. New York Rangers, 4–1
Lost Conference Finals to Boston Bruins, 0–4[10]
1990–91 1990–91 Wales Patrick 3rd 80 37 36 7 81 258 258 11 5 6 29 35 Won Division Semifinals vs. New York Rangers, 4–2
Lost Division Finals to Pittsburgh Penguins, 1–4[11]
1991–92 1991–92 Wales Patrick 2nd 80 45 27 8 98 330 275 7 3 4 27 25 Lost Division Semifinals to Pittsburgh Penguins, 3–4[12]
1992–93 1992–93[a] Wales Patrick 2nd 84 43 34 7 93 325 286 6 4 2 15 23 Lost Division Semifinals to New York Islanders, 2–4[13]
1993–94 1993–94 Eastern[b] Atlantic 3rd 84 39 35 10 88 277 263 11 5 6 32 32 Won Conference Quarterfinals vs. Pittsburgh Penguins, 4–2
Lost Conference Semifinals to New York Rangers, 1–4[14]
1994–95 1994–95[c] Eastern Atlantic 2nd 48 22 18 8 52 136 120 7 3 4 10 17 Lost Conference Quarterfinals to Pittsburgh Penguins, 3–4[15]
1995–96 1995–96 Eastern Atlantic 4th 82 39 32 11 89 234 204 6 2 4 17 21 Lost Conference Quarterfinals to Pittsburgh Penguins, 2–4[16]
1996–97 1996–97 Eastern Atlantic 5th 82 33 40 9 75 214 231 Did not qualify
1997–98 1997–98 EasternConference champions Atlantic 3rd 82 40 30 12 92 219 202 21 12 9 53 44 Won Conference Quarterfinals vs. Boston Bruins, 4–2
Won Conference Semifinals vs. Ottawa Senators, 4–1
Won Conference Finals vs. Buffalo Sabres, 4–2
Lost Stanley Cup Finals to Detroit Red Wings, 0–4[17]
1998–99 1998–99 Eastern Southeast[g] 3rd 82 31 45 6 68 200 218 Did not qualify
1999–2000 1999–2000 Eastern SoutheastDivision champions 1st 82 44 24 12 2[d] 102 227 194 5 1 4 6 15 Lost Conference Quarterfinals to Pittsburgh Penguins, 1–4[18]
2000–01 2000–01 Eastern SoutheastDivision champions 1st 82 41 27 10 4 96 233 211 6 2 4 10 14 Lost Conference Quarterfinals to Pittsburgh Penguins, 2–4[19]
2001–02 2001–02 Eastern Southeast 2nd 82 36 33 11 2 85 228 240 Did not qualify
2002–03 2002–03 Eastern Southeast 2nd 82 39 29 8 6 92 224 220 6 2 4 15 14 Lost Conference Quarterfinals to Tampa Bay Lightning, 2–4[20]
2003–04 2003–04 Eastern Southeast 5th 82 23 46 10 3 59 186 253 Did not qualify
2004–05[e] 2004–05 Eastern Southeast Season cancelled due to 2004–05 NHL lockout
2005–06 2005–06 Eastern Southeast 5th 82 29 41 [f] 12 70 237 306 Did not qualify
2006–07 2006–07 Eastern Southeast 5th 82 28 40 14 70 235 286 Did not qualify
2007–08 2007–08 Eastern SoutheastDivision champions 1st 82 43 31 8 94 242 231 7 3 4 20 23 Lost Conference Quarterfinals to Philadelphia Flyers, 3–4[21]
2008–09 2008–09 Eastern SoutheastDivision champions 1st 82 50 24 8 108 272 245 14 7 7 41 38 Won Conference Quarterfinals vs. New York Rangers, 4–3
Lost Conference Semifinals to Pittsburgh Penguins, 3–4[22]
2009–10 2009–10 Eastern SoutheastDivision champions 1st 82 54 15 13 121Led league in points 318 233 7 3 4 22 20 Lost Conference Quarterfinals to Montreal Canadiens, 3–4[23]
2010–11 2010–11 Eastern SoutheastDivision champions 1st 82 48 23 11 107 224 197 9 4 5 23 24 Won Conference Quarterfinals vs. New York Rangers, 4–1
Lost Conference Semifinals to Tampa Bay Lightning, 0–4[24]
2011–12 2011–12 Eastern Southeast 2nd 82 42 32 8 92 222 230 14 7 7 28 30 Won Conference Quarterfinals vs. Boston Bruins, 4-3
Lost Conference Semifinals to New York Rangers, 3–4[25]
2012–13[h] 2012–13 Eastern SoutheastDivision champions 1st 48 27 18 3 57 149 130 7 3 4 13 15 Lost Conference Quarterfinals to New York Rangers, 3–4[26]
2013–14 2013–14 Eastern Metropolitan[i] 5th 82 38 30 14 90 235 240 Did not qualify
2014–15 2014–15 Eastern Metropolitan 2nd 82 45 26 11 101 242 203 14 7 7 28 28 Won First Round vs. New York Islanders, 4–3
Lost Second Round to New York Rangers, 3–4[27]
2015–16 2015–16 Eastern MetropolitanDivision champions 1st 82 56 18 8 120Led league in points 252 193 12 6 6 29 22 Won First Round vs. Philadelphia Flyers, 4–2
Lost Second Round to Pittsburgh Penguins, 2–4[28]
2016–17 2016–17 Eastern MetropolitanDivision champions 1st 82 55 19 8 118Led league in points 263 182 13 7 6 36 34 Won First Round vs. Toronto Maple Leafs, 4–2
Lost Second Round to Pittsburgh Penguins, 3–4
2017–18dagger 2017–18 EasternConference champions MetropolitanDivision champions 1st 82 49 26 7 105 259 239 24 16 8 86 61 Won First Round vs. Columbus Blue Jackets 4–2
Won Second Round vs. Pittsburgh Penguins 4–2
Won Conference Finals vs. Tampa Bay Lightning 4–3
Won Stanley Cup Finals vs. Vegas Golden Knights 4–1
2018–19 2018–19 Eastern MetropolitanDivision champions 1st 82 48 26 8 104 278 249 TBD TBD TBD TBD TBD L, First Round 3-4 (Carolina Hurricanes)
Totals[29][30] 3508 1623 1432 303 150 3699 11085 11175 275 132 143 793 776

Current roster

Updated June 13, 2021[31][32]

# Nat Player Pos S/G Age Acquired Birthplace
27 Flag of Russia Alexeyev, AlexanderAlexander Alexeyev

D L 22 2018 St. Petersburg, Russia
31 Flag of the United States Anderson, CraigCraig Anderson

G L 40 2021 Park Ridge, Illinois
19 Flag of Sweden Backstrom, NicklasNicklas Backstrom


C L 34 2006 Gävle, Sweden
74 Flag of the United States Carlson, JohnJohn Carlson


D R 32 2008 Natick, Massachusetts
28 Flag of Canada Carr, DanielDaniel Carr

LW L 30 2020 Sherwood Park, Alberta
33 Flag of Slovakia Chara, ZdenoZdeno Chara

D L 45 2020 Trenčín, Czechoslovakia
1 Flag of the United States Copley, PheonixPheonix Copley

G L 30 2017 North Pole, Alaska
4 Flag of Canada Dillon, BrendenBrenden Dillon

D L 31 2020 New Westminster, British Columbia
26 Flag of the United States Dowd, NicNic Dowd

C R 31 2018 Huntsville, Alabama
20 Flag of Denmark Eller, LarsLars Eller

C L 33 2016 Rødovre, Denmark
42 Flag of Slovakia Fehervary, MartinMartin Fehervary

D L 22 2018 Bratislava, Slovakia
39 Flag of Canada Fucale, ZacharyZachary Fucale

G L 26 2020 Laval, Quebec
62 Flag of Sweden Hagelin, CarlCarl Hagelin

LW L 33 2019 Nykvarn, Sweden
21 Flag of the United States Hathaway, GarnetGarnet Hathaway

RW R 30 2019 Naples, Florida
3 Flag of the United States Jensen, NickNick Jensen

D R 31 2019 Rogers, Minnesota
6 Flag of the Czech Republic Kempny, MichalMichal Kempny

 Injured Reserve

D L 31 2018 Hodonín, Czechoslovakia
92 Flag of Russia Kuznetsov, EvgenyEvgeny Kuznetsov

C L 29 2010 Chelyabinsk, Russia
36 Flag of the United States LaDue, PaulPaul LaDue

D R 29 2020 Grand Forks, North Dakota
49 Flag of Canada Leason, BrettBrett Leason

RW R 23 2019 Calgary, Alberta
35 Flag of Sweden Lundqvist, HenrikHenrik Lundqvist

 Injured Reserve

G L 40 2020 Åre, Sweden
47 Flag of Canada Malenstyn, BeckBeck Malenstyn

 Injured Reserve

RW L 24 2016 Delta, British Columbia
39 Flag of Canada Mantha, AnthonyAnthony Mantha

RW L 27 2021 Longueuil, Quebec
24 Flag of Canada McMichael, ConnorConnor McMichael

C L 21 2019 Scarborough, Ontario
9 Flag of Russia Orlov, DmitryDmitry Orlov

D L 30 2009 Novokuznetsk, Soviet Union
77 Flag of the United States Oshie, T. J.T. J. Oshie

RW R 35 2015 Mount Vernon, Washington
8 Flag of Russia Ovechkin, AlexanderAlexander Ovechkin


LW R 36 2004 Moscow, Soviet Union
40 Flag of Canada Pilon, GarrettGarrett Pilon

C R 24 2016 Mineola, New York
17 Flag of Austria Raffl, MichaelMichael Raffl

LW L 33 2021 Villach, Austria
30 Flag of Russia Samsonov, IlyaIlya Samsonov

G L 25 2015 Magnitogorsk, Russia
2 Flag of Canada Schultz, JustinJustin Schultz

D R 31 2020 Kelowna, British Columbia
73 Flag of the United States Sheary, ConorConor Sheary

LW L 29 2020 Winchester, Massachusetts
10 Flag of Netherlands Sprong, DanielDaniel Sprong

RW R 25 2020 Amsterdam, Netherlands
57 Flag of the United States van Riemsdyk, TrevorTrevor van Riemsdyk

D R 30 2020 Middletown, New Jersey
41 Flag of the Czech Republic Vanecek, VitekVitek Vanecek

G L 26 2014 Havlíčkův Brod, Czech Republic
43 Flag of Canada Wilson, TomTom Wilson

RW R 28 2012 Toronto, Ontario

Team captains

Retired numbers

Hanging banners at the Verizon Center's rafters celebrating the retired numbers of the Washington Capitals

  • 5. Flag of the United States Rod Langway, D, 1982-93, number retired November 26, 1997
  • 7. Flag of Canada Yvon Labre, D, 1974-81, number retired November 22, 1980
  • 11. Flag of Canada Mike Gartner, RW, 1979–89, number retired December 28, 2008
  • 32. Flag of Canada Dale Hunter, C, 1987-99, number retired March 11, 2000
  • 99. Flag of Canada Wayne Gretzky, number retired league-wide February 6, 2000

Franchise scoring leaders

Player Pos GP G A PTS PPG
Flag of Slovakia Peter Bondra RW 961 472 353 825 0.86
Flag of Canada Mike Gartner RW 758 397 392 789 1.04
Flag of the Czech Republic Michal Pivoňka C 825 181 418 599 0.73
Flag of Canada Dale Hunter C 872 181 375 556 0.64
Flag of Sweden Bengt-Åke Gustafsson RW 629 196 359 555 0.88
Flag of Canada Mike Ridley C 588 218 329 547 0.93
Flag of Sweden Calle Johansson D 983 113 361 474 0.48
Flag of Canada Dennis Maruk C 343 182 249 431 1.26
Flag of Canada Scott Stevens D 601 98 331 429 0.71
Flag of the United States Kevin Hatcher D 685 149 277 426 0.62


  1. Washington Capitals Statistics and History. The Internet Hockey Database. Retrieved on April 26, 2016.
  2. Washington Capitals Franchise Index. Hockey-Reference. Sports Reference LLC. Retrieved on April 25, 2016.
  3. 1983 NHL Playoff Summary. Hockey-Reference. Sports Reference LLC. Retrieved on April 27, 2016.
  4. 1984 NHL Playoff Summary. Hockey-Reference. Sports Reference LLC. Retrieved on April 27, 2016.
  5. 1985 NHL Playoff Summary. Hockey-Reference. Sports Reference LLC. Retrieved on April 27, 2016.
  6. 1986 NHL Playoff Summary. Hockey-Reference. Sports Reference LLC. Retrieved on April 27, 2016.
  7. 1987 NHL Playoff Summary. Hockey-Reference. Sports Reference LLC. Retrieved on April 27, 2016.
  8. 1988 NHL Playoff Summary. Hockey-Reference. Sports Reference LLC. Retrieved on April 27, 2016.
  9. 1989 NHL Playoff Summary. Hockey-Reference. Sports Reference LLC. Retrieved on April 27, 2016.
  10. 1990 NHL Playoff Summary. Hockey-Reference. Sports Reference LLC. Retrieved on April 27, 2016.
  11. 1991 NHL Playoff Summary. Hockey-Reference. Sports Reference LLC. Retrieved on April 27, 2016.
  12. 1992 NHL Playoff Summary. Hockey-Reference. Sports Reference LLC. Retrieved on April 27, 2016.
  13. 1993 NHL Playoff Summary. Hockey-Reference. Sports Reference LLC. Retrieved on April 27, 2016.
  14. 1994 NHL Playoff Summary. Hockey-Reference. Sports Reference LLC. Retrieved on April 27, 2016.
  15. 1995 NHL Playoff Summary. Hockey-Reference. Sports Reference LLC. Retrieved on April 27, 2016.
  16. 1996 NHL Playoff Summary. Hockey-Reference. Sports Reference LLC. Retrieved on April 27, 2016.
  17. 1998 NHL Playoff Summary. Hockey-Reference. Sports Reference LLC. Retrieved on April 27, 2016.
  18. 2000 NHL Playoff Summary. Hockey-Reference. Sports Reference LLC. Retrieved on April 27, 2016.
  19. 2001 NHL Playoff Summary. Hockey-Reference. Sports Reference LLC. Retrieved on April 27, 2016.
  20. 2003 NHL Playoff Summary. Hockey-Reference. Sports Reference LLC. Retrieved on April 27, 2016.
  21. 2008 NHL Playoff Summary. Hockey-Reference. Sports Reference LLC. Retrieved on April 27, 2016.
  22. 2009 NHL Playoff Summary. Hockey-Reference. Sports Reference LLC. Retrieved on April 27, 2016.
  23. 2010 NHL Playoff Summary. Hockey-Reference. Sports Reference LLC. Retrieved on April 27, 2016.
  24. 2011 NHL Playoff Summary. Hockey-Reference. Sports Reference LLC. Retrieved on April 27, 2016.
  25. 2012 NHL Playoff Summary. Hockey-Reference. Sports Reference LLC. Retrieved on April 27, 2016.
  26. 2013 NHL Playoff Summary. Hockey-Reference. Sports Reference LLC. Retrieved on April 27, 2016.
  27. 2015 NHL Playoff Summary. Hockey-Reference. Sports Reference LLC. Retrieved on April 27, 2016.
  28. 2016 NHL Playoff Summary. Hockey-Reference. Sports Reference LLC. Retrieved on May 11, 2016.
  29. Total statistics of Washington Capitals in Regular season 1974/75 - 2018/19 |
  30. Total statistics of Washington Capitals in Playoff 1974/75 - 2017/18 |
  31. Washington Capitals Roster. National Hockey League.
  32. Washington Capitals Hockey Transactions. The Sports Network.
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