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Capitals' Nic Dowd and Nick Jensen are key postseason rookies for defending champs

Capitals' Nic Dowd and Nick Jensen are key postseason rookies for defending champs

Washington Capitals center Nic Dowd and defenseman Nick Jensen have long been stuck watching the Stanley Cup playoffs through a television screen. For years, neither have had the chance to break into the coveted race for a championship with their previous NHL teams and experience what Washington now considers an organizational norm.

That will finally change this season. Playoff rookies and close friends, Dowd and Jensen are set to play in their first career postseason when the Capitals kick off their first-round series against the Carolina Hurricanes Thursday at Capital One Arena.

With the Capitals making it to the postseason 11 times in the last 12 years, Washington is used...

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