Alumni Game (26 of 29)

Hold it here! Craig Laughlin poses after scoring a tying goal late in the third. (Photo credit: Chris Gordon)

On a crisp Thursday night in Arlington, Virginia, a bunch of former Washington Capitals got together for the team’s first annual intersquad alumni game. Featuring players flying in from as far away as Sweden (Bengt Gustavsson) and Montana (Brendan Witt), the old Caps engaged in a spirited contest. In the end, team red prevailed 6-4 in the shootout.

The Caps have ramped the visibility in recent years, starting with the 2011 Winter Classic alumni game against the Penguins. Now, though, the quality of the players participating is much improved, featuring a Hall of Fame member and a few All Stars. Granted, most of the elite players are part of the team’s current coaching staff (Adam Oates, Olie Kolzig, and Calle Johansson), but Peter Bondra, Rod Langway, Yvon Labre, and even Kevin Kaminski also participated.

Below, take a look at my photos from the night.

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Team Maryland and Team Virginia pose after the game (Download the high-res version)

Despite Washington, D.C. setting a record high temperature of 102 degrees Saturday, it was a perfect day for hockey as over 40 players and over a hundred visitors gathered at Kettler Capitals Iceplex for the 4th Annual Dave Fay Memorial Game benefitting Hockey Fights Cancer. Former Caps Yvon Labre, Gord Lane, Paul Mulvey, Gary Rissling, and Alan Hangsleben joined players from across Maryland and Virginia to honor the long-time Washington Times hockey writer who passed away in 2007 after 12-year battle with cancer.

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Above, are highlights from the Caps Pens Alumni Game where the two-period exhibition ended in a 5-5 tie. One of my favorite All-Time Capitals, Peter Bondra, tied the game in the final few minutes with a wicked slap shot from the middle of the circles. In Bonzai’s post-game scrum with the media, he revealed that the scrimmage actually got quite intense.

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kolzig

Rumors, and for us Caps fans – despair, fill up most of the downtime until we wait for the puck to drop again in October. Some of us speculate on which UFA will be (re)signed, some of us debate hotness of hockey players with or without teeth and some of us debate who’s sweater should hang in the rafters of The Phone Booth.

Olaf Kölzig spent 16 years as a Washington Capital — including six appearances as their goalie in the playoffs. He owns many of the franchise’s meaningful goalie records (GP, W, SO, Pts, SVs and SV%). Should the Caps honor the now-retired Kölzig by hoisting his jersey to the Verizon Center rafters?

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