Former Bears Help Lead Capitals to Stanley Cup Title
The Washington Capitals, the NHL affiliate of the Hershey Bears, claimed the franchise's first Stanley Cup championship this evening, thanks to a roster that prominently featured numerous former members of the Chocolate and White. In total, 14 players on Washington's playoff roster previously played in Hershey, including 10 former Bears who dressed in tonight's Cup clinching Game 5 win over the Vegas Golden Knights.
The following members of Washington's Stanley Cup winning roster have previously played with Hershey: Jay Beagle, Madison Bowey, Travis Boyd, Andre Burakovsky, John Carlson, Pheonix Copley, Christian Djoos, Philipp Grubauer, Braden Holtby, Dmitri Orlov, Chandler Stephenson, Jakub Vrana, Nathan Walker, and Tom Wilson.
Beagle and Carlson won back-to-back Calder Cups in Hershey in 2009 and 2010, while Holtby helped the club to the title in 2010. With Washington's Stanley Cup win, Beagle became the first player to win the ECHL's Kelly Cup (Idaho, 2007), AHL's Calder Cup (Hershey, 2009 and 2010) and the Stanley Cup (Washington, 2018).
Five players on Washington's Stanley Cup winning roster (Bowey, Boyd, Copley, Stephenson, Walker) skated for the Bears this past year during Hershey's 80th Anniversary Season. Djoos, Stephenson, and Vrana were all standouts in Hershey for the past several years before becoming regular contributors to Washington's lineup this season. All three players played large roles in leading the Bears to the 2016 Calder Cup Finals, where Hershey was eventually swept by Lake Erie in four games.
In addition, several staff members for Washington have ties to the Chocolate and White. Washington's goaltending coach, Scott Murray, spent 2013-2017 as the associate goaltending coach in Hershey. Hershey's current video coach, Mike King, joined the Capitals for the club's playoff run and has played a part in the team's video analysis behind the scenes. Washington radio broadcaster John Walton called the action in Hershey from 2002-2011, serving as the voice of Hershey's Calder Cup championships in 2006, 2009, and 2010.
Washington's championship marks the first time Hershey's NHL affiliate has claimed the Stanley Cup since the Tampa Bay Lightning, a duel affiliate of the Bears for one season, won the title in 2004. The Capitals and Bears current affiliation began in 2005, with the two teams also working together from 1977-1984.
Vegas featured a roster that included former Bears Cody Eakin, Deryk Engelland, and Nate Schmidt.
Season ticket packages for Hershey's 2018-19 season are on sale now, featuring discounted costs and extra added benefits. Full Season, 22-game, 12-game, and Flex-10 plans are available with packages starting at just $195. For more information, call 717-520-5796.
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