Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Washington Capitals: If Players Were Presidents -- Yvon Labre

And now, as we steam (quite literally) into the dog days of summer, and we gird our loins for what looks to be an entertaining political season, we will take a look back at Washington Capitals over the years and ask ourselves, “if so-and-so was a U.S. President, which one would he be?”  Let’s start at the beginning…

Yvon Labre, the “Father of Our Franchise.”

It makes sense, right?...

George Washington, first President of the United States, first (and to date, only) President to be elected unanimously (in 1789 with all 69 electoral votes).  Yvon Labre was not the first Captain of the Washington Capitals (Doug Mohns was), but he scored the first home goal in franchise history (the Los Angeles Kings were the victim; it was the only Caps goal in a 1-1 tie, the first standings point earned in club history) and was the first player in franchise history to have his number retired.

George Washington fought for the British before fighting the British.  Yvon Labre was a Pittsburgh Penguin before he played against the Pittsburgh Penguins...

George Washington lost more battles than he won.  In fact, “he lost more battles than any victorious general in modern history.”  Yvon Labre lost more games than he won as Captain of the Capitals (91 losses to 41 wins).

George Washington was the only President who did not live in Washington, D.C.  Yvon Labre didn’t play for the Capitals in Washington, D.C.  The Caps played at the Capital Centre in Landover, MD.  Oh, and Washington was a landowner…land-owner…land-over.  Almost the same, eh?

George Washington did not wear wooden teeth (his false teeth were made from other materials), but he famously had problems with his teeth (mostly a lack of them).  Yvon Labre was a hockey player…’nuff said.

George Washington had a variety of health problems over the course of his life.   Yvon Labre had knee injuries that would ultimately cut short his career

Yvon Labre played his last seven NHL seasons with the Capitals, all of them in the difficult, formative years of the franchise.  It was not unlike a military commander called upon to lead a young collection of colonies to independence through battle and into the formative years of the Republic.

OK, it is different, but let’s not get too serious.  After all, it is summertime.