They say what happens in Vegas stays in Vegas. That hasn’t been the case for the Washington Capitals, whose celebration has gone from T-Mobile Arena and the visitor’s locker room all the way to Georgetown in Washington, D.C. In fact, the party has raged on since Alex Ovechkin first hoisted the Cup following the team’s 4-3 victory over Vegas in Game 5.
So far, their celebration has had fans alluding to The Hangover, and the Cup has visited many different places that it can be hard to see where the Cup is headed and where it’s been. Here’s the Capitals’ weekend with the Cup, where its been and how the celebration continues to unfold.
Thursday, June 7
8:08 p.m. PST– The final horn sounds to mark the end of Game 5 as the Washington Capitals jump off the bench and crash into Braden Holtby, gloves and sticks flying as they celebrate their franchise’s first Stanley Cup championship. Alex Ovechkin flies off the bench, screaming, and joins in to celebrate with his teammates. Minutes later, he accepts the Conn Smythe Trophy as the most valuable player of the postseason, where he led the playoffs with 15 goals and served as a role model to his teammates.
Around 8:20 p.m. PST– Ovechkin, still screaming in celebration, goes up and hoists the Stanley Cup for the first time. He skates around before passing it off to long-time linemate and friend Nicklas Backstrom. The two then hoist it together as the celebration rages on the ice. After a while of celebrating, conducting post-game interviews and spending time with family on the ice, the celebration then rages on to the locker room.
Around 9:30 p.m. PST– Ovechkin brings the Cup into the locker room after finally leaving the ice after a quick kiss of the Cup and a “Thank you, Vegas!” His teammates great him with a shower of champagne and beer. The entire dressing room is drenched in alcohol, but deservingly so. Washington took the Final series in five games, winning four straight games to clinch the 2018 title. Players take turns drinking from Lord Stanley’s Cup, and a bit later, the Capitals put their arms around each other and stop the festivities to sing off-key to “We Are the Champions” by Queen.
About 10:30 PST– Washington’s celebration at T-Mobile winds down and comes to an end as the equipment managers are done loading out and the Cup is ready to make its exit. The team makes its way from the locker room to the team buses, but the night is by no means coming to an end as they head to their next destination. Teammates joke around with one another as they make their way out of Golden Knights territory and onto the strip. At the same time, Ovechkin goes live on Instagram. He is sitting in the back of the team bus next to the Cup and starts chanting a dubstep beat and riling up his teammate before singing “Stanley Cup, Stanley Cup” while showing off his hardware on camera. He gives the Cup another kiss and lets the celebration rage on.
Friday, June 8
12:45 a.m. PST– The Capitals head to MGM to continue the celebration with the Cup. Ovechkin fearlessly leads the way, walking straight through the Casino and heading into Hakkasan to party on stage with Tiesto. He and his teammates dance onstage, with Jakub Vrana, the 22-year-old rookie who played hero in Game 5, donning a Brooks Orpik jersey. The party rages until about 4:30 a.m.
4:30 p.m. EST– Washington returns to the East Coast Friday, flying into Dulles International Airport. They carry the Cup off the team plane, welcoming the Cup to its new home, Washington D.C. Though the Cup briefly visited D.C. throughout the Cup Final, it will now take place in its new habitat, shining just as bright as yet another monument that graces the city’s history. At some point in time, the Capitals take the time to appreciate Arlington’s police department and first responders.
— ArlingtonCountyPD (@ArlingtonVaPD) June 9, 2018
Around 8 p.m. EST– The Capitals arrive at Don Tito in Arlington, Virginia (close to their practice facility, Kettler Capitals Iceplex), to conintue celebrating with a private party. Lord Stanley is of course still along for the ride; Tom Wilson takes the trophy from its black case and carries it into the club. The night again includes Ovechkin hoisting his latest trophy proudly, with more players taking drinks out of the Cup as they pour champagne and booze on the celebrating fans below.
Saturday, June 9
11 a.m. EST– The Capitals make their way to Nationals Park for the Nats’ game against the San Francisco Giants, where they are to present the Cup to fans as Ovechkin throws the game’s first pitch. Nicklas Backstrom, John Carlson and Alex Ovechkin conduct a press conference early prior to the game, the Cup on the table next to them. Backstrom jokes that “Russian machine never breaks,” to which Carlson shoots a glance at Ovechkin and says, “He’s breaking now.” They laugh, and Ovechkin takes another drink of water on the table next to him.
11:47 a.m. EST– Ovechkin throws the first pitch, but it goes way over Max Scherzer’s head. It’s a mulligan, but when you have over 600 career NHL goals and just won the Stanley Cup and the Conn Smythe, you can have as many mulligans as you want. His second pitch is on target, then the Capitals make their way to a suite at Nats Park. Amongst thousands of fans, anyone can spot Ovechkin among the unfamiliar faces int he crowd, standing, a shiny, nearly 3-foot tall Cup above his head. Christian Djoos is donning an oversized “Djoos is loose” shirt that T.J. Oshie bought off the back of a fan earlier at Kettler. The players are moving along to the beat as they see occasional glimpses of themselves on the big screen. A team no longer haunted by demons of their past.
Around 6 p.m. EST– The Capitals show up in Georgetown with the Cup. Ovechkin drinks more from the Cup, and then nods his head in rhythm with simultaneous “Ovi” chants. The 32-year-old then strips down and runs into the fountain, throwing water all over the place as he swims in the shallow water. His teammates follow suit, T.J. Oshie barefoot and some of them with their clothes still on, jeans drenched.
— ABC News (@ABC) June 11, 2018
Almost an hour later, Washington heads back to the party bus. While jamming to Blink-182 and holding an impromptu, short-lived Emo night, they head to a tattoo parlor. Vrana and Andre Burakovsky are just two of the many Capitals that get their latest feat inked on their left arms.
Almost 8 p.m., EST– Washington and the Cup make their way to Cafe Milano in Georgetown. Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner are there and meet the Capitals as they celebrate over dinner. The party carries over into the nighttime, the Cup making appearances on the roof and beyond.
Around 10:15 p.m. EST– Ovechkin and Evgeny Kuznetsov head out early as the party rages on, moving to various nightclubs around D.C. Players like Backstrom and John Carlson start to join at various hotspots around the district as the hours pass. Ovechkin, who hadn’t stopped partying, returns to his home with Lord Stanley, greeting his family. He falls asleep with the Cup in his bed. The rest of his teammates continue to live and soak in this moment – quite literally soaked in more champagne.
Sunday, June 10 and Beyond
A lot has calmed down since Thursday, but by no means has the celebration come to an end. Ovechkin is seen around Tyson’s running errands, including grocery shopping and grabbing some sushi at the mall. The rest of the team continues a more mild form of celebration as the coaches have their time with the Cup. But as Ovechkin’s wife recorded him on her Instagram story, he can be heard still singing “We Are the Champions.”
Lord Stanley also paid a visit to the Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon Monday. The Capitals will hold their Cup parade at 11 a.m. Tuesday in D.C., culminating with a rally on the National Mall. But even though the wild weekend has come to a close, this won’t be the last time the team parties with the Cup.
Sammi Silber covers the Capitals beat for The Hockey Writers and is an NHL contributor with Sporting News. She has also contributed to USA TODAY College, Huffington Post, FanSided and the Nation Network. Silber has written four books and recently worked on graphics for the film, The California Golden Seals Movie.