The fact that the Caps find themselves in a 1-1 series tie through two games may feel like a surprise, but it shouldn’t be. At least not according to Barry Trotz.

While many were hoping to see the Capitals take out the Toronto Maple Leafs quickly in order to rest for a presumed second round series against the Pittsburgh Penguins, Trotz believes those kinds of quick series are just not typical of the playoffs.

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“Everybody goes into a series hoping that you win every game, but the reality of it is it's going to be a long series no matter who you play,” Trotz said in a conference call with the media on Sunday. “If you play really well and you get a couple of breaks and you execute and you're playing well as a team, you may take out a team a little earlier, but most of the series, look around, they're always anywhere from six to seven-game series a lot of them.”

Typically, he’s right. In fact, the biggest surprise of the playoffs thus far, even more surprising than how even the Caps-Leafs series has gone, is that fact that two teams have already taken 3-0 leads in their respective series. It is the first time two series have gone 3-0 in the first round since 2014.

Of course, it doesn’t help that one of those teams is Pittsburgh, but I digress.


For his part, Trotz was not concerned with how the series started in Washington, calling the first two games a “feeling out process.”

Now, however, the real series can begin.

“They won a game in our building so the series is on,” Trotz said. “It's on.”