page contents The Caps could end the stupidest streak in sports. Heck yeah it matters. – The News Headline

The Caps could end the stupidest streak in sports. Heck yeah it matters.

Lovers in a while prior to Washington’s Sport five win. (John McDonnell / The Washington Submit)

If the Caps beat the Penguins on Monday night time in Pittsburgh — or in the event that they lose that recreation however beat the Penguins on Wednesday night time in D.C. — two issues will occur.

(Smartly, greater than two issues will occur. For instance, some 23-year outdated D.C. local will most likely rip off his footwear in celebratory-if-confused bliss after which fill them, for causes he hasn’t regarded as and doesn’t even perceive, with each pineapple flavored vodka and whipped cream, prior to flinging the ones boozy boots into the air as flecks of Caribbean cream land softly within the within reach grass, to liven up the night time of within reach beetles, assuming beetles drink vodka at night time. That’s now not some of the two issues I imply. Additionally, some long term Jakub it is going to be conceived, if I will be so frank, and that’s now not some of the two issues, both.)

Those are the 2 issues I’m speaking about:

  1. D.C. sports activities lovers of a undeniable ilk will liberate some of the longest, inner most and maximum freeing exhalations in their lifetimes, delighted past trust that some of the stupidest streaks in sports activities is in any case over. That streak, in fact, is the 20-year stretch right through which the Caps, Nats, Redskins and Wizards all did not advance to the overall 4 in their sports activities, a stretch unrivaled via any identical town and person who now occupies undue house within all of our heads. I’ve been writing about this stupidest of streaks for like 1 / 4 of my lifestyles. So have lots of my colleagues, and journalists for different native shops, and 20-somethings on Twitter, and lovers making an attempt desperately to make their non-Washington buddies perceive why they’re the best way they’re. It’s the stupidest streak in sports activities as a result of no person desires of supporting a group that wins a silly second-round collection, and but it’s transform Washington’s explicit obsession. Which brings me to,
  2. Folks will make a laugh of D.C. sports activities lovers for deliriously celebrating the tip of this silly streak.

This isn’t even a question. Before the first fan has pressed send on the first postgame tweet about the end of this streak (if it happens, knock on wood, I’m not a dang psychic, I have no idea what’s going to happen, I’m not trying to jinx anything, I’m just writing this on my night off because I’m too lazy to take up pickling and you can only watch so many episodes of “Criminal Minds” at a time, let me live), there will be a dissenting tweet already started, making the following points:

  • Deliriously celebrating a conference semifinal appearance is for losers.
  • Calling a season a success because of a second-round playoff victory is loser talk.
  • Loser talk is for losers.
  • And, especially, this: If the Caps go on to lose to the Lightning in the Eastern Conference finals, fans who deliriously celebrated a conference semifinal appearance will feel silly, because no team — and certainly not a team that’s knocked on the door of immortality as long as the Rock the Red Caps have — considers the pinnacle of achievement to be an unsuccessful appearance in the conference finals just to end some stupid streak also starring Drew Storen and Dan Turk and Kelly Olynyk.

No one daydreams about  losing in the NLCS, or the NFC title game. You don’t get a ring if you lose in the Eastern Conference finals. There will be no second-round parades, no Mission Accomplished banners on F Street. No one says of Dan Marino or Charles Barkley, “Well, they never won it all, but they sure did win the heck out of some AFC divisional round games or some conference title games.”

Which is why my colleague Adam Kilgore wrote that “getting to the conference finals is such a lousy goal,” and why my colleague Tim Bontemps chimed in to agree with Kilgore, and why my colleague David Larimer called this “an utterly phony goal,” adding that “no franchise or player is defined by conference finals made.”

Look, I can’t tell anyone what to think. If you’re a lifelong Caps fan who wound find a win over the Penguins satisfying only because it’s one step closer to the Stanley Cup Finals, that’s fine. If you would derive extra satisfaction from beating Sidney Crosby and the Penguins but not from ending this streak, that’s fine, too. If you don’t care at all about the stupidest streak in sports, well, I’m not going to tell you to care about something you don’t. It’s like trying to convince someone to like pineapple vodka, mixed with whipped cream and scented by the inside of a sneaker. Either you do or you don’t.

All I’m saying is this: If you’re a fan who can’t wait to see this stupidest streak end, you’re not alone. I’ve heard about this from so, so many fans over so, so many years, good and serious fans, who just want this to go away. They remember how close Washington has come: the 3-1 lead over the Rangers in 2015, the Storen game, the seventh inning in 2016, the Scherzer weirdness in 2017, Wall’s broken wrist, all those Caps Game 7s. They just want something different, something new, something better.

As a result of this stuff are cumulative. The ache of that Nats Sport five fiasco final 12 months was once magnified on account of the losses in 2016 and 2014 and 2012. The Wizards’ second-round loss to the Celtics was once worse on account of the second-round losses to the Hawks and Pacers. The Caps’ second-round loss to the Penguins wouldn’t had been so dangerous if the Caps hadn’t in the past misplaced to the Penguins, and prior to that to the Penguins, and prior to that to the Penguins, after which there was once that one time they misplaced to the Penguins, and the Penguins, and the second one around, and the Penguins, and the second one around, and the Penguins, and I swear it infrequently makes you wish to have to surrender at the entire idea of sports activities fandom totally and simply pay attention to pickling. And for those who root for all of the ones groups … I imply, I’m sorry.

(Let me pause right here to mention I anxiously look ahead to the emails and tweets from D.C. United lovers livid with me for discounting their group’s achievements. You recognize what, you’re proper. I retract this complete piece. If truth be told, I didn’t submit it. You’re simply imagining this. Electronic mail me for extra main points.)

The sheer repetition of the item was the true frustration: It’s once a year, each group, each season, with the similar dumb roadblock. The previous decade has been nearly unrivaled in D.C. sports activities historical past: the most productive Caps groups we’ve ever observed, the most productive baseball groups we’ve observed in 90 years, homegrown all-stars all over, absurd particular person accomplishments, MVPs and Cy Youngs, one playoff look after any other. After which the acquainted thud, crashing into the similar precise barrel falling down the similar precise ladder.

Will Alex Ovechkin’s profession be regarded as entire if he in any case climbs up the second-round ladder, most effective to get smashed via a convention finals fireball? Nah, guy. Everyone knows how this works. Will D.C. sports activities lovers imagine themselves entire if one in every of their favourite groups ultimately concludes a season within the ultimate 4 as a substitute of the overall 8. In fact now not. Are there lovers now muttering, “If shall we simply get previous the second one around prior to I die …” as one in every of my colleagues paradoxically requested this week? I don’t know. Most probably now not.

However would it not really feel considerably higher if this Caps group is going one around additional? I believe it could. It could really feel like development, like trade. It could make this season other. It could let everybody exhale. This entire factor has been arduous and worrying, repetitive and incessant. Above all, it’s been silly.

So if it ends — and who is aware of if it’s going to — please don’t concern about Web concept leaders and arch observers and their above-it-all mockery. Don’t concern about doubtlessly shedding to the Lightning, both. You’ve dragged across the stupidest streak in sports activities for 20 years — maximum of your lives, for lots of of you. It’s flavored a whole decade, sloshed your whole groups in combination into one mix of frustration. For those who in any case become independent from? Why on the planet wouldn’t you rejoice? Would possibly as neatly meet on Pennsylvania Street. You carry the whipped cream.

Learn extra:

Washington, Cincinnati, Columbus and Winnipeg make up an ideal unhappy sports activities listing

Capitals’ Nicklas Backstrom more likely to play in Sport 6 regardless of upper-body harm

Penguins now in desperation mode — however they’ve succeeded in those spots prior to

Penguins-Capitals Sport five: Washington wins, 6-Three, and Caps have two probabilities to clinch collection

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