The Capitals have made a point to make clear they won’t be celebrating their first victory of the season with a vacation reward.
The Capitals, who defeated the Pittsburgh Penguins 2-1 in overtime in Game 3 of their second-round series at Verizon Center on Saturday, won the weekend with a 5-2 victory.
The goal for the Capitals was to be a little more gracious with their win over the Pens, who also went 3-0 in the postseason.
But they weren’t going to get the chance to do that with the Capitals, whose coaches didn’t like the way the team celebrated the victory and didn’t want to reward the fans for their support.
Coach Barry Trotz said the team should have used their vacation time to celebrate the victory.
The players did that, but the coaching staff didn’t, he said.
It was a hard-fought, hard-played, very physical game, and they played a hard game.
So I think you have to let that go.
We’ve got to let our players enjoy this game, play the game the right way and get to the next one.
The Penguins are not happy with Trotz’s decision.
“I think it’s a shame that they feel they need to make this about themselves,” Penguins coach Mike Sullivan said.
“They’re disappointed and we’re disappointed.”
Trotz said the coach’s comments were in the heat of the moment.
“We had a very good, well-played game, which was a result of good coaching,” Trotz told the team’s official website.
“We’re going to try to win every game in this series, but we can’t celebrate.
That’s what this series is about, to celebrate.
We got to get back to playing hockey and play the way we’ve played this whole season.”
The Capitals have not been on vacation since their 4-1 loss to the New York Rangers on Dec. 13.
They’ve also not been to Pens camp since they beat the Islanders 3-2 on Jan. 28.
The Pens are off to their best start since winning the Stanley Cup in 2008.
They are 3-1-1 against Eastern Conference teams and are 5-0-1 on the road.
The Caps were 5-1 with two wins against the Bruins and Flyers on Jan: 1 and Jan.: 3, their first victories at home against any Eastern Conference team.
The Bruins have scored at least one goal in all three games this season.
The two teams have played in seven games this postseason.
The Penguins have won three of those.
The teams play at 7 p.m.
Sunday at Verizon Arena.