City Desk

Wizards Road Streak Gives Fans a Reason to Care

The Wizards lost again last night in Minneapolis. That makes 'em 0-19 as visitors this season.

No other NBA team has lost every road game this year.

There's no reason to pay attention to the Wizards from here on out as compelling as their road losing streak.

If this continues for much longer, it'll be like DiMaggio (circa 1941) in OppositeLand around here: All of Washington will wake up in the morning anxious to check the newspapers to see if the Wizards lost another away game. (That's how Washington gets its news, right?)

But as horrendous as the Wiz surely are away from Fun Street, so far they're only half as bad as the horrendousest road squad in local sports history.

That title will forever belong to the 1974-1975 Washington Capitals.

The Caps, in the franchise's first year, went their first 37 road games without a win.

Even more stupendously, this skein came in the era where the NHL had ties — a whole lot of ties — but the expansion Caps couldn't even manage a draw away from Capital Centre in the town then known as Largo.

The Caps were 0-37-0 on March 28, 1975, when they went to Oakland and beat the California Golden Seals, 5-3, to end the streak, which still stands as the worst in NHL history.

The Caps players treated the win as the historic moment it was. Here's some recollections of what happened after the final horn on that big night from former Caps center Ron LaLonde:

"We came into the dressing room and there was a big green garbage can, and we pretended that was our Stanley Cup. We signed it all and skated back out on the ice, all the fans had left for the night but we went out, [Caps leading scorer] Tommy Williams led the charge, and that garbage can with our signatures on it was there for two or three years afterward until they moved the franchise."

Great story. And, come to think of it, that trash can remains the only sort of trophy the Washington Caps have ever skated around with.

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