At long last, Ovechkin and Capitals are Stanley Cup champs

Caps on cusp of Cup after Washington takes 3-1 series lead in Stanley Cup Final

Caps on cusp of Cup after Washington takes 3-1 series lead in Stanley Cup Final

This marked the first appearance in the Stanley Cup Finals appearance for the Capitals since 1998, when Washington was swept by the Detroit Red Wings in four games.

Lars Eller scored with 7:37 left in the third period as the Capitals defeated the Vegas Golden Knights 4-3 in Game 5 of the best-of-seven final to take the series 4-1.

He scored a goal in the second period of Game 5 giving him 15 in the playoffs which passed John Druce for the most in Capitals' history. They've dominated the stat in this series 68-25, and it's one of the reasons Vegas has only five goals in three games after scoring six in Game 1.

Over the next 18 seasons, the Capitals returned to the playoffs 12 times but their string of blows kept coming. Vegas lost three games in the first three rounds and never lost more than three in a row in the regular season.

The lead lasted less than four minutes as former Capital defenseman Nate Schmidt scored first for the Knights, on a shot from above the right circle that careened off Matt Niskanen's skate. If they can turn it around and get back to being to Golden Knights we remember, they might have a chance, but the damage may already be done.

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Evgeny Kuznetsov picked up and assist, bringing his NHL-high post-season point total to 32. The Caps challenged for goalie interference, but were denied. He has a -4 rating over the past two games.

IT's been a long time coming for Ovechkin, who is now able to celebrate his first championship in his 13th National Hockey League season and, just for good measure, was awarded the Conn Smythe Trophy as playoff MVP.

Alexander Ovechkin is one of the greatest of all time now, and there are no more caveats.

As had been the norm throughout their playoff run, Vegas provided the usual pageantry before the opening faceoff, with a knight defeating an opponent representing the visiting team - in this case the Capitals - in a staged sword battle.

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