Washington is known nationally for its politics, and the division that creates. But the Capitals’ championship parade put focus on the local residents, and a city united by its team’s title run.
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There’s a physical price to be paid for a Stanley Cup.
Washington Capitals defenseman Brooks Orpik, one of many to play through injuries during the playoffs, knows that too well.
He told the media on team break-up day that his pinkie finger “kinda fell off” after a slash at the end of Game 2 of the final series against the Vegas Golden Knights.
Forward Erik Haula’s whack — which was given a five-minute penalty and game misconduct — on Orpik’s hand took off the tip of his finger, and it had to be stitched back on.
“It probably looked worse than it was,” Orpik said. “It was tough to look at. But the trainers did a really good job. It was never something that I thought would keep me from playing.”
The 37-year-old also said he suffered another hand injury in the second game of the first round that may require surgery.
In the least-surprising news, Orpik did not miss any games. His goal in the second period of Game 2 ended up being the game-winner — his first goal in 220 games.
Capitals forward Nicklas Backstrom also said he fractured two bones in his finger via a slap shot he blocked in the second round. He missed four games. Teammate Andre Burakovsky suffered a broken right thumb in Round 1; he broke his left during the season and needed surgery. He played in 13 of the 24 playoff games.
The Capitals won the Stanley Cup for the first time in the franchise’s 44-year existence.