Capitals

RG3 tops Luck, Wilson for offensive rookie award

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RG3 tops Luck, Wilson for offensive rookie award

NEW ORLEANS (AP) Robert Griffin III did not show a hint of a limp while walking up and down the red carpet before accepting The Associated Press 2012 NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year award Saturday night.

Tough to tell the Washington Redskins quarterback had surgery to repair two ligaments in his right knee less than a month ago.

``It's truly a blessing ... to be able to stand, first and foremost,'' Griffin said.

Speaking to the media for the first time since his Jan. 9 operation, the man known as RG3 said he's aiming to return to action at the start of next season.

``The knee is good. ... I'm pretty far ahead. I don't want to scare anyone, so I'll take it slow,'' said Griffin, who wore a tie with the Redskins' burgundy and gold colors. ``My goal is Week 1.''

He received 29 votes from a nationwide panel of 50 media members who regularly cover the league, topping two other quarterbacks who also took their teams to the postseason: Andrew Luck of the Indianapolis Colts got 11 votes, and Russell Wilson of the Seattle Seahawks got 10.

``All the competition for this award is extremely good,'' Griffin said. ``It seems like the league's in good hands with the young quarterbacks.''

The AP NFL Offensive Rookie honor was never won by a quarterback from its inception in 1957 until Ben Roethlisberger of the Pittsburgh Steelers became the first QB to receive the award in 2004. But Griffin is the sixth quarterback in the last nine years to win it.

Wilson's Seahawks beat Griffin's Redskins in the second round of the playoffs, when Washington's QB left in the fourth quarter after tearing up his knee.

The No. 2 overall draft pick last year after winning the Heisman Trophy at Baylor, Griffin led the Redskins to their first NFC title in 13 years with a thrill-a-minute combination of running and passing. He rushed for 815 yards, a record for a rookie QB, and threw for 3,200 yards, 20 touchdowns and only five interceptions.

Griffin wants to have a chat with Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson, who came back from his own major knee injury to gain more than 2,000 yards this season, earning awards Saturday for NFL MVP and Offensive Player of the Year.

``I'm going to do my best to give him good information,'' Peterson said. ``Of course, everyone heals differently. We all have different mindsets. ... People are like, `Wow, how did it happen?' I had to work real hard.''

As it is, Griffin promised Saturday to come back new-and-improved.

``I think you'll see different version of me,'' he said. ``You'll see a better Robert Griffin.''

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Caps Top 20 Goals Countdown - Goal 6 - Ovechkin opens Game 7 vs TB with a bang

Caps Top 20 Goals Countdown - Goal 6 - Ovechkin opens Game 7 vs TB with a bang

Always the emotional leader of the Capitals, Alex Ovechkin knew that when he woke up on May 23, 2018, that he had the chance to alter the course of his personal history and help push the Capitals to its first Stanley Cup Final appearance since 1998.

Before the puck dropped on a win-or-go-home Game 7, the determination was painted on Ovechkin’s face and on his first shift in the game just 1:02 into the contest in Tampa Bay, the Capitals captain found the back of the net with a one-timer from the point to put his stamp on the game.

Number 6 on our countdown of the Top 20 Goals of the Stanley Cup run is Ovechkin’s opener in Game 7 of the Eastern Conference Final which catapulted the Capitals to a 4-0 win on the road.

After a strong backcheck and hit by Tom Wilson at center dislodged the puck from Chris Kunitz, he and Evgeny Kuznetsov turned the puck back towards the Lightning zone with Ovechkin trailing the play up the left wing. A drop pass from Wilson right after he crossed the blue line left Kuznetsov with the space needed to whip the puck across the zone to Ovechkin who wasted no time in firing past an unsuspecting Andrei Vasilevskiy for the opening goal of the pivotal game.

The site of one of Ovechkin’s iconic celebrations, the infamous “hot stick” celebration when the captain tallied his 50th goal of the season in 2009, Tampa has always treated the Great 8 kindly as the top line winger entered the 2018 postseason with 14 goals in 22 regular season games in the city. After the Caps finally clinched their spot back in the Stanley Cup Final, Tampa likely will always have a special place in the hearts of Capitals fans and Ovechkin alike.

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Bryce Harper on facing the Nationals: 'It's definitely going to be weird'

Bryce Harper on facing the Nationals: 'It's definitely going to be weird'

Bryce Harper's felt the love in Philly from day one, he told reporters on Tuesday.

And when he comes to his old stomping grounds next week to face the Nationals, he knows it's going to be strange.

“The Nationals are a great team, and are gonna be a great team this year and everybody knows that," he said. "For me, I just want to focus on what we can as a team; as a clubhouse and control what we can.”

"It’s definitely going to be weird walking into opposing clubhouse and seeing the other guys from afar," he added of his impending April 2 trip to Washington. "I wish those guys nothing but the best on that side of the baseball."

But that doesn't mean he's missing his old teammates. In fact, he said, everything's been just great with his new teammates from day one.

"From day one, it felt right," he said. "I always talk about family and being a family and one unit. I get that from this team. Every guy has your back and vice versa. So, I'm very excited to go to battle with these guys.”

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