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Round 1

Capitals host 6-year-old fan who went viral getting puck

Girl has moment with Connolly before Game 2, attends Game 5 with family as owner's guests

by Tom Gulitti @TomGulittiNHL / Staff Writer

WASHINGTON -- The week keeps getting better for Keelan Moxley.

The 6-year-old girl who became an internet star after video of Washington Capitals forward Brett Connolly's repeated attempts to toss her a puck went viral was a guest of the Capitals for Game 5 of the Eastern Conference First Round against the Columbus Blue Jackets at Capital One Arena on Saturday.


[RELATED: Burakovsky out rest of first round for Capitals | Complete Capitals vs. Blue Jackets series coverage]


Moxley and her family attended the game at the invitation of Capitals owner Ted Leonsis and watched from seats behind the glass. As the "Fan of the Game," Moxley then led the crowd in a chant of "Let's go Caps!" before the Capitals and Blue Jackets took the ice for the start of the first period.

Tweet from @Capitals: Great to have Keelan, Patrick and Andi back to kick off Game 5! #ALLCAPS

"That was really fun," Moxley told of leading the chant, "because the people that were next to me, they became my friends now."

Leonsis also presented Moxley with a stick Connolly autographed.

"Keelan Moxley's family is raising her right - she's as diehard a Caps fan as they come," Leonsis said. "She was part of a great moment for hockey and it was a delight to meet her. Young fans like Keelan are the future of this game. I was thrilled to be able to give the Moxley family my tickets for the game today."

Connolly became Moxley's favorite Capitals player because of his efforts to give her a puck during warmups prior to Game 2 in Washington on Sunday. She wore his jersey to the game and was rooting hard for him and the Capitals to win.

After spotting Moxley watching from behind the glass, Connolly picked up a puck and tried to toss it to her, but it was intercepted by a man who gave it to a boy standing to her right. The man also intercepted Connolly's second toss and gave it to the boy standing to her left.

Tweet from @Capitals: Update: Brett and Keelan met after the win! #ALLCAPS

Seeing Moxley was unhappy, a persistent Connolly banged against the glass with his glove, making clear he was trying to give a puck to her. The man got the message, so when Connolly grabbed a third puck and tossed it over the glass, he gave it to Moxley.

Video: CBJ@WSH, Gm2: Connolly makes young fan's night

The whole sequence was captured by an NBC Sports Washington camera, and the video went viral after it was posted on Twitter, becoming the most streamed NHL video on Twitter of all time. Moxley also became a mini celebrity at school and brought the puck in for show and tell. She also showed off her puck on a news segment on the in-school TV station..

Video: CBJ@WSH, Gm5: Keelan Moxley is Caps "fan of the game"

"It's been really exciting," Moxley's mother, Lauren, said. "The week has been like a whirlwind. I never imagined any of this."

After her experience on Saturday, Keelan have another story to share in school on Monday.

Photo(s) credit: Monumental Sports & Entertainment



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