WASHINGTON — Our city is celebrating its first Stanley Cup title, but it was not that long ago we needed to hear it’s OK to believe.
There was no swagger around here. We were not conditioned for a Cup, but instead a collapse.
Capitals’ radio broadcaster John Walton tweeted out the hashtag “It’s OK to believe” during the playoff series with the Penguins.
Once again the Caps were having a tough time with the Penguins and Walton could sense the fan base’s resignation that soon the playoff run would be over.
Walton is not from here but has been around long enough to know that disappointment is in our D.C. sports DNA. We needed to be encouraged to keep our heads up. D.C. might be considered the world’s most powerful city, but we can wobble when it comes to sports.
Now it’s not only OK to believe, but OK to scream and shout.
A city often divided by difference is now connected by a Cup, the Stanley Cup. More to the point, D.C. has been brought together by a Capitals’ team already together.
Perhaps in the midst of our own struggles, we identified with the Capitals resolve and resilience.
To win the Stanley Cup, the Capitals trailed in all four rounds of the playoffs and clinched every series on the road. There was perseverance instead of panic. They believed.
As the Capitals became the talk of the town, we started to talk to each other. Texts and tweets were replaced by real connection and conversation. This new found friendliness might fade, but the memory of what the Capitals accomplished will not.
Whether we realize it now or not, we are a more confident city today. All things are possible because a hockey team reminded us it’s OK to believe.