ARLINGTON, Va. (AP) -The Washington Capitals are somewhere they've never been before, at the top of the NHL heap going into the playoffs.
They've got big targets on their backs and even bigger expectations from the fans. The pain of enduring multiple last-place rebuilding seasons will be certainly worth it if the franchise wins its first Stanley Cup in June.
The journey starts Thursday when they open at home in their first-round series against the Montreal Canadiens.
Defenseman Mike Green says the Capitals are "more hungry" and "more focused" than they were the past two years. Washington was eliminated in the first round two years ago and was knocked out in the second round last year.