George McPhee – Washington Capitals (1997)
McPhee, like Rutherford also played the game with skates on the ice at the professional level as an undrafted free agent. Staying in the metropolitan area, McPhee played for the New York Rangers and the New Jersey Devils from 1983-1989. He is a former Hobey Baker winner and CCHA all star, earning both First and Second team honors during his tenure with the CCHA.
McPhee stepped into his role as general manager of the Washington Capitals after spending time with the Vancouver Canucks as vice president and director of hockey operations. The Vancouver Canucks won a division and conference championship with McPhee leading the hockey department.
The Washington Capitals have won seven Southeast Division championships under McPhee, with eight seasons bringing in 40 or more wins, including a franchise record season that netted the team 121 points in the standings.
The Capitals have only missed the playoffs five times in McPhee’s tenure, and made it to the Stanley Cup Finals representing the Eastern Conference in just his first season at the helm.
McPhee has not been afraid of putting his team through a fire sale and a rebuild, but there are some in the Capitals fanbase who grow weary of the early exits of the Washington Capitals from the playoffs – having made the playoffs every year since the 2007-2008 season, the Capitals have only had the ability to get to the second round at best.
With Ilya Kovalchuk jumping form his massive NHL contract to play in the KHL – rumors are swirling that the face of the Capitals franchise, Alex Ovechkin is going to do the same thing. Where does this play into the McPhee conversation? His comments regarding the Ovechkin situation make his stance on the Caps forward is very clear.
…From day one this kid’s always wanted to play over here, and I don’t imagine he’s going to want to go back any time soon…
That doesn’t sit well with one Capitals fan who voiced his opinion via comment on an article related to the Ovechkin rumors.
GMGM is an idiot, and doesn’t seemed too concerned about anything Capitals related. Also, I can’t imagine Ovie saying anything other than this. If the guy did or does have interest in leaving he’s not going to be open about it. Did we not learn anything from Kovalchuk? All that being said, I hope Ovie is being genuine and sticks around for at least the remainder of his contract. People can hate on Ovie all they want, but the fact of the matter is he is a beast and the Caps would nearly be irrelevant if number 8 is not on the ice. Let us also not forget he is fun to watch when he’s on his game.
Thanks to user bohman88 for voicing that opinion on McPhee. Can’t the same be said for Ryan Miller and Thomas Vanek in Buffalo – how much more irrelevant to the league would the Buffalo Sabres be if Darcy can’t manage to keep Miller and Vanek or replace their talent levels? Losing Ovechkin to the KHL and not making the Capitals more of a force in the playoffs could harken in the end of the McPhee era in Washington.