It’s hard to believe that the Washington Capitals have been around for nearly 40 years. In the 1970s, the Caps were undeniably bad, and the city nearly lost the team. But now Washington enjoys one of the best home ice crowds in the league, and the Caps’ best player, Alex Ovechkin, is likely the greatest player in franchise history.
For the last three decades, the Caps have been largely successful in the regular season, though they have only gone deep in the playoffs twice – reaching the Eastern Conference Finals in 1990 and the Stanley Cup Finals in 1998. The Caps have had many great players over the years, but they have never quite had enough to win it all.
As the Caps begin playoff action for the 23rd time in the last 29 years, Bleacher Report takes a look at the 25 greatest Capitals of all time. Five former Caps are in the NHL Hall of Fame, but only three made the top ten on this list. Longevity with the franchise was a consideration in addition to effectiveness.
The top players on this list are among the best players in NHL history. If the list shows us anything, it might be that a lack of star goalies has been one of the missing ingredients for a franchise that has yet to win a Stanley Cup.