The National Hockey League (NHL) awarded Washington, D.C. with an expansion franchise in 1972, which became the Washington Capitals in 1974.  Washington has qualified for the playoffs 29 times – including the team’s Stanley Cup championship in 2018, the run to the Stanley Cup Final in 1998 and three Presidents’ Trophy-winning teams (2009-10, 2015-16, 2016-17), symbolic of the NHL’s best regular-season record.