clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Rink Rank: The 100 Greatest Washington Capitals

We (think we) know who #1 is... but what about the next 99?

Getty Images / (clockwise from top left) Greg Fiume/Mitchell Layton/Rick Stewart/Bruce Bennett/Doug Pensinger/Phillip MacCallum/Patrick Smith

To celebrate its 100th birthday, the National Hockey League is revealing a list of the 100 greatest players in League history. You can safely bet that Alex Ovechkin will be on the list, along with several other NHL legends who at one time or another donned a Washington Capitals sweater.

And while the Caps have only been around for 42 seasons, with the All-Star break upon us and everyone diving headlong into a pool of nostalgia, here’s your chance to rank the top 100 players to lace ‘em up for the Capitals.

So what are the ground rules?

  1. If we simply base the rankings on how good a player is or was in a vacuum, there’s going to be a bias towards current players (does anyone think Andre Burakovsky, for example, wouldn’t have scored 50 goals per season in the early ‘70s?). In order to level the playing field a bit, let’s rank players relative to the era in which they played - how good is or was the player relative to his peers?
  2. Only consider players’ careers as Caps - save your dreams of what might have been if Abe Pollin had decided to pay Scott Stevens (a great Cap, but a first-ballot Hall of Famer based on his complete body of work) for elsewhere. Also, you can consider your projections for current players, but let’s try to keep it realistic (sure, Braden Holtby would be the greatest Cap ever after winning his sixth-consecutive Conn Smythe Trophy, but... yeah).
  3. The initial ordering of players is based on games played for the Caps (and contains more than 100 players), so it will take a little while for the ranking to settle, but you can change your vote as long as voting is open in order to more accurately reflect your personal rankings, so come back and give it a once over (or refresh the page) as often as you like.

That’s pretty much it. To aid in your decision-making, refer to Hockey-Reference’s register of Caps skaters and goalies, and have fun with it... and the inevitable arguments in the comments section.