SNIDER: Caps show the true meaning of sports

Rick Snider
June 08, 2018 - 11:32 am

Harry How/Getty Images


It has been so long since a Washington team won a championship – 9,629 days to be exact – that the pure joy of winning was forgotten.

The Penn Quarter overflowed with fans watching the Capitals win the Stanley Cup championship on Thursday . . . in Las Vegas. Maybe 50,000 people were inside and out of Capital One Arena. Every bar in town was crammed. There were outside viewing parties throughout town.

Sports is the great communal experience. It's why having teams are so important. But it's also why winning a title is so important. It creates memories of a lifetime. It makes life sweet amid the chaos.

So thank you, Washington Capitals, for reminding us that life is more than the grind. It's also happiness.

Who didn't tear up watching T.J. Oshie and his father hoist the Cup together? Or Alexander Ovechkin no longer having a stain on his sure hall-of-fame career of being another great player without a ring? Or each and every Caps player and coach screaming with joy while hoisting the Cup over realizing a lifelong dream.

It would have been nice to have the Caps win it at home, but Washington doesn't get many titles, much less in front of local fans. The 1997 DC United, 1942 Redskins and 1924 Senators have been the only ones to win the title at home. That's it – that's the list.

So finally, a new generation of Washingtonians, those too young or living elsewhere in January 1992 when the Redskins won the title to remember the euphoria, has their moment. One that will be recalled for as long as we live.

In recent years, we've seen Boston celebrate with a Red Sox championship. Chicago got one with the Cubs. Cleveland scored with the Cavaliers.

Now it's Washington's time to no longer be a national punching bag over politics. The Stanley Cup lives here. And wouldn't it be ironic if the Nats could punch through in the World Series this fall, too.

Titletown USA.

Rick Snider has covered Washington sports since 1978. Follow him on Twitter: @Snide_Remarks