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James Neal

Stanley Cup run makes up for Capitals' playoff failures

Stanley Cup run makes up for Capitals' playoff failures

There was Pat Lafontaine of the Islanders beating them in the four-overtime “Easter Epic” back in 1987. Esa Tikkanen missing a wide-open net in the Stanley Cup Final loss to Detroit in 1998.

Heck, losing nine of 11 postseason meetings against the Pittsburgh Penguins alone is filled to the brim with gut-wrenching letdowns.

The puck finally bounced the right way for the Capitals, who built a 3-1 lead in the Final against Vegas after some rare postseason fortune and wrapped it up Thursday night in Game 5. Lars Eller's double-overtime winner off his right skate kept his team out of a 3-0 hole in the first round. Then came a cathartic, six-game elimination of the Penguins behind...

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