Ex-Capitals teammates Joel Ward and Troy Brouwer met in this year’s Western Conference Finals with their new teams, the San Jose Sharks and St. Louis Blues, respectively. Ward, clutch af as always, got the best of the matchup with four big goals in Games Five and Six.
In the handshake line after the Shark’s series victory, Ward and Brouwer shared a tender moment.
“I mean, you know, we miss Ward. Joel Ward — he’s the kind of guy we needed in the playoffs,” MacLellan said. “You know, you make changes, and he’s a guy that we wanted back and we didn’t get back. We missed that skill set.”
Wednesday night, the Big Cheese punched his ticket to the Stanley Cup Finals with his new team, the San Jose Sharks. And he was clutch af.
Tuesday, ESPN’s Pierre LeBrun published a feature on former Capitals Troy Brouwer and Joel Ward. Both players were a part of the Washington team that lost to the New York Rangers in Game Seven last season, and both players departed in the offseason. Brouwer was traded to the St. Louis Blues for TJ Oshie. Ward signed with the San Jose Sharks after the Capitals inked Justin Williams to a two-year deal.
Earlier this week, Ward and Brouwer addressed their former team’s flame-out in the second round.
Yep, it happened again. Former Capital Joel Ward, he of locked in a bathroom stall fame, got locked out of the visitors locker room in Philadelphia on Thursday. I’ll let CSN Philadelphia’s Chris Therien explain.
I want to point you at a story that is only nominally about hockey. It’s the story of Malik Johnson, powerfully written for The Tennesseean by Jessica Bliss. Malik is a troubled teen, a classic but tragically common tale, or he at least he would have been if not for the intervention of one of our favorites, Joel Ward.
Through Big Brothers Big Sisters, Ward first connected with Johnson, then twelve years old, six years ago. Ward and phalanx of others in the Nashville Predators organization gave Johnson support and companionship when he needed it most. When Ward left Nashville, his bond with Johnson didn’t end. “You just can’t pick up and leave somebody behind like that,” Ward tells the Tennessean.
Give the story a read. You’ll be glad you did, and you’ll probably also be glad you got to cheer for Joel Ward for a while.
Former Capital forward Joel Ward is killing it in San Jose. Saturday night at SAP Center, The Big Cheese had his biggest game of the young season, scoring his second career hat trick in a 5-2 victory over the Carolina Hurricanes. His first career hat trick came November 1, 2013 against the Flyers.
The Washington Capitals did right by Joel Ward on Tuesday.
Welcoming number 42 back to Verizon Center for the first time since his departure over the summer, the Caps played the video below during the first break in play. For his 57 goals, 64 assists, and 263,372 goofy smiles, Ward was rewarded with a standing ovation from the home crowd.
Here’s the video. It’s titled, “Thank you, Big Cheese.” Bob Marley’s “One Love” plays in the background.
Now, via Melissa C. (@fredvegasbass), we’re learning just how much of a consummate professional and helpful teammate Ward was while still in Washington. Watch as he and Andre Burakovsky do a face-off drill at Kettler Capitals Iceplex. You’ll love the leadership here.