Before the game, Nationals principal owner Mark Lerner, General Manager Mike Rizzo and Manager Dave Martinez were introduced to loud applause. Then the Caps and Nats joined on the ice for a “District of Champions” team photo — minus the WNBA champion Mystics — as Queen’s “We are the Champions” played.
“They going to have beers, they going to have lots of chicken wings and nachos,” he said. “They deserve it. That’s pretty cool. We very happy for guys, for the whole city, for fans, for this area. They [were] in the fight and they finished the fight.”
Several Caps players wore Nats jerseys as they entered Capital One Arena, and their counterparts returned the favor while wheeling in the Commissioner’s Trophy.
“Sports are so great for everybody in this area. It is something we can all agree on and enjoy and take part in,” Capitals Coach Todd Reirdon said before Sunday’s game. “It’s great for this area and for them to be in our rink tonight will be special.
“I know our players are really looking forward to it and looking forward to taking a picture with them and having some fun as well. It will be a great honor to have them as the World Series champs, and hopefully we can take some momentum from what we are seeing from them.”
After the pregame ceremony, the Nats were set to be hosted in a pair of suites in the arena. After Ovechkin paraded the Stanley Cup onto the field at Nationals Park last year and threw out the ceremonial first pitch, he and his teammates were scheduled to leave shortly thereafter but stayed in their suite for all nine innings.
The Washington Post’s Samantha Pell contributed to this report.