As the final seconds of Game 3 ticked down, you could feel the tension. No, this wasn’t coming from 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, it was coming from 7th and F. The Caps had swept the Lightning in Tampa but promptly game one of the games with a 4-2 loss at home.
Not even 24 hours ago, Caps fans were thinking they were one win away from putting a strangle hold on the series. There was such confidence in the Nation’s Capital, even notorious Washington Caps pessimist, Tony Kornheiser, was putting the Caps in the Stanley Cup Finals.
“Listen, they’re going to win the Stanley Cup,” Kornheiser said. “This is their year. They finally have luck, they’re strong. Ovechkin, he’s not going to be Sidney Crosby, but he’s going to get one, and that’s really important. They’re killing it on the road.”
The Caps had won the first two games in dominating fashion outscoring Tampa Bay 10-4.
But then Game 3 happened and the series is one more Lightning road win away from there being wide-scale panic among the Caps’ faithful.
D.C. sports talk radio will be full of part-time Caps historians and “everyone hates us” banter. Sprinkled in will be some ‘it’s just one game’ talk. You know… the talk when you’re trying to convince yourself everything is ok.
Thursday was supposed to be the day of coronation now it’s ‘oh my goodness, don’t choke it away”. In other words, it’s a typical day in May among the hockey faithful in the Nation’s Capital.