Washington Capitals Should Practice Patience, Not Panic

Dave Nichols@@DaveNicholsDSPSenior Analyst IMay 3, 2010

WASHINGTON DC, DC - APRIL 23:  Alex Ovechkin #8 and head coach Bruce Boudreau of the Washington Capitals look on against the Montreal Canadiens in Game Five of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals during the 2010 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs at the Verizon Center on April 23, 2010 in Washington, DC.  (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)
Jim McIsaac/Getty Images
I had a much longer column partially written, about practicing patience and taking to task everyone that seems so infatuated with blowing up the Caps for failing to close out Montreal after being up three games to one.
But instead of preaching, I'll give a simple history lesson.
It took Glen Sather, Wayne Gretzky, and his talented teammates four playoff seasons with the Edmonton Oilers  before they won the Stanley Cup.
They then won the thing five times in seven years, including the last when the Great One had moved on.
It took Scotty Bowman, Steve Yzerman, and the Detroit Red Wings three playoff seasons working together, but then won the Cup three times in six seasons.
It took Al Arbour, Bryan Trottier, and Mike Bossy five seasons together before they won their first Cup; then they went on to win four years in a row.
All had heartbreaking playoff exits before being able to drink from the Cup.
Bruce Boudreau, Alex Ovechkin, and Nicklas Backstrom have been together for three playoff seasons.
History tells us we should be patient.
Of the Capitals top nine scorers this season, seven were 26 years old or younger.
In what should be their top four defensemen next season, the oldest will be 25 years old.
Their two top goaltenders next season will both be 22 year old.
The window isn't closing.  It's barely cracked open.
From Sergei Federov's interview with Puck Daddy :
"The thing is that the team is gaining experience right now. I know that good teams with good players 10 or 15 years ago were not winning everything right away.
Right now the most important thing is to leave the team and players alone, and to calmly get ready for the next season. There are no revolutions needed."