15 years ago, George McPhee was hired as the general manager of the Washington Capitals. In his first year, the team reached the pinnacle of the National Hockey League before falling in the Stanley Cup Finals at the hands of the Detroit Red Wings. Since then, the Capitals have not advanced further than the second round of the playoffs, and have failed to capitalize on their plethora of playoff opportunities. The team had captured five straight division titles before failing to qualify for the playoffs in 2014. After such an abysmal performance in 2014, it’s time for a change in the Nation’s capital.
Several reporters of the team have echoed the sentiment felt by many Capitals fans, and feel change is upon us. The direction of where the team should go is another topic of discussion. If Washington decides to relieve McPhee of his duties, who would take over? The Caps need a savvy veteran of the position who is able to tie together the aging stars while developing a winning attitude amongst the team’s youth. With the realignment of the divisions, returning to the playoffs will be an extremely difficult task, and therefore a change must be made.
Firing head coach Adam Oates is another obvious choice, but with Oates’ knowledge and connections within the NHL it shouldn’t surprise people if the new general manager decides to keep Oates around. He is new to the coaching gig in Washington, and although the team struggled to qualify for the playoffs, he may be a better option than those available. Washington must find something that will work for the group of veterans that may not have many playoff runs left in them.