Textbook DC sports night

Wednesday night possessed the quintessential performance by DC sports teams -- two playoff losses and a thrilling regular season victory.

The front page of the Thursday Washington Post encapsulated the tail of woe and hope perfectly with pictures of the Capitals and Wizards losses and text at the bottom of the page highlighting the Nationals come-from-behind victory over the Baltimore Orioles.

After earning another President's Trophy as the best NHL team during the regular season, the Capitals choked on a seventh game at Verizon Center to the Penguins.  This marks the 9th straight playoff performance ending prior to the Eastern Conference Finals in the Alexander Ovechkin era.  It is like the Capitals have become the modern day equivalent of the "Wait till next year" Brooklyn Dodgers.

Admit it.  After coming back from 3-1, you thought the Capitals were going to do it.  I did.  But they didn't.

While getting blanked 2-0 by Pittsburgh, Washington played much like they did in their disappointing Game 4 loss.  They dominated play through two periods, but just couldn't seem to net a goal due to overpassing on their own part or excellent defensive stops by the Penguins.  In both games, Pittsburgh dominated play throughout the third period.

Entering Wednesday night, the Wizards needed to win one game in Boston to advance to the NBA Eastern Conference Finals.  Coming off two straight dominant victories at home, Game 5 was the best opportunity for Washington to gain a road win.  Just like the Capitals don't win series finales, the Celtics don't lose them -- and certainly not at home.

Just like the Capitals, the Wizards had a tremendous regular season.  It was the best regular season for Washington since the 1979 NBA Finals-participant Washington Bullets.  The Wizards are talented enough to beat the Celtics in a seven-game series, but they won't -- they lost this series Wednesday night.

Admit it.  After that thrilling Wizards Game 6 finish and victory Friday night, you are thinking they are going to do it.  Not me...and they won't.

What is so funny (in a gallows humor sort of way) is the Nationals helped DC avoid the municipality loser hat trick by beating the Baltimore Orioles in a thrilling bottom of the ninth come-from-behind contest.  The Nationals have a tremendous starting rotation, a generational star in Bryce Harper and are solid all around.  Well, solid all around except in the bullpen (last sentence, first paragraph makes going to the link well worth the effort).

The Nats have been above .500 each of the last five years and National League East division champions in three of those five.  However, Washington has lost in the opening round in each of those playoff appearances.  The initial playoff loss in 2012 was stunningly heart breaking.  You have heard of Drew Storen, right?

Admit it.  With a six game lead in mid-May, you are thinking the Nationals are a team of destiny and they are going to do it.  Not me...and they won't.


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