This is the season of Washington sports!
The Capitals, Wizards and Nationals all made their respective playoffs. It’s been a while since that happened.
The Caps will play the Pittsburgh Penguins starting Thursday night, with Game 1 at Verizon Center. The Wizards will play the Hawks in Atlanta on Sunday afternoon. The Nats are already through to the NLDS, and will start their series against the Dodgers on Friday at Nationals Park.
Washington vs. Pittsburgh: The Ultimate Guide
Ready for Round 2? Here’s what you need to know:
TV schedule: All games on NBC Sports Network (except where noted below)
The first-round playoff matchup between the Capitals and the Penguins has been a long time coming. This will be the third straight season these teams have faced off in the playoffs, but this year, it feels like the most important one yet. The stakes are higher, emotions are rawer and everything is on the line.
The series begins Thursday night at Verizon Center, with Game 2 on Saturday afternoon. Games 3 and 4 will be in Pittsburgh on Monday and Wednesday before the series returns to Washington for Game 5 on Friday night. If necessary, Games 6 and 7 would also be played in Washington next Sunday and Tuesday.
Below is your guide to everything you need to know before puck drop Thursday night.
The National Hockey League playoffs are here, and while the two-month tournament is often full of surprises, there’s a good chance it ends with a familiar face hoisting the Stanley Cup. Two of the final four teams left standing in this year’s playoff field are last year’s finalists: The Pittsburgh Penguins, who won their second consecutive title, and the Nashville Predators, who lost to Pittsburgh in six games.
This year’s quarterfinals feature some compelling matchups, including a rematch of last season’s final, but the most intriguing one features the Penguins against their biggest rival and an underdog team on a roll: the Washington Capitals.
It has been a decade since these two teams met in the playoffs and over 30 years since they faced off in a playoff series that went more than five games. Can Washington finally get past its arch nemesis? Let’s take a look at how these teams match up.
The Washington Capitals take on the Pittsburgh Penguins in the second-round of the NHL playoffs beginning Thursday night. The series will feature a number of intriguing storylines, including superstar Sidney Crosby squaring off against Alex Ovechkin, the Capitals’ inability to win a playoff series against Pittsburgh, and a matchup between two of the Eastern Conference’s most exciting teams.
Here’s everything you need to know heading into the series.
What You Need to Know:
The Washington Capitals and Pittsburgh Penguins are playing each other in the second round of the Stanley Cup playoffs. The winner of this series will advance to the Eastern Conference Finals.
This is a rematch of last year’s second round, when Pittsburgh beat Washington in six games and went on to win their fourth Stanley Cup title.
The Capitals lead this year’s season series 3-1-0.
Washington finished five points ahead of Pittsburgh in the Metropolitan Division, but the Penguins had more wins (50-45) and have home ice advantage for this series. They also have won nine straight playoff series against the Caps, dating back to 1992.
The teams split their regular season matchups at PPG Paints Arena, with each team winning a game in overtime by a score of 4-3. The winner will host Game 7 (if necessary). This is just the third time since the NHL introduced its current playoff format that two teams that met in Round 2 last year will face off again this early in the postseason.
What You’ll Be Watching For:
Alex Ovechkin: The Caps’ captain is on fire right now and has scored 12 goals in his last eight playoff games against the Penguins. He also is one goal shy of
The Washington Capitals and Pittsburgh Penguins, two of the NHL’s starriest teams, will meet in the second round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs. The best-of-seven series begins Thursday in Pittsburgh.
Here is a guide to the upcoming series:
1. The Penguins are the defending champions, having defeated the San Jose Sharks in last year’s Stanley Cup Final. Washington is seeking its first Stanley Cup title since entering the NHL in 1974.
2. Pittsburgh swept Columbus in its first-round series, outscoring the Blue Jackets 13-3 in four games. Washington defeated Toronto in six games, winning four consecutive after dropping Games 1 and 2 at home.
3. This will be the third playoff meeting between Washington and Pittsburgh since 2016, after which the NHL was forced to readjust its divisional playoff format for this season. The Capitals won Game 7 in overtime at home on May 10, 2016, after surrendering a 3-1 lead in that series. Pittsburgh won Game 6 at home to clinch their second-round series on May 10, 2017.
4. This is only Washington’s second trip to the conference semifinals since losing to Pittsburgh last spring; each of those losses ended with a Game 7 defeat at Verizon Center (the other came against Tampa Bay