December 10, 2019

Washington Capitals sign Justin Williams to two-year deal

The Washington Capitals have agreed to terms with 33-year-old free agent right winger Justin Williams, according to TSN’s Aaron Ward.

The deal is for two years and $3.25 million, per Darren Dreger.

The Cobourg, Ont. native spent the last eight seasons in Los Angeles as a key member of a Kings team that went to three straight Western Conference Finals, a three year stretch (2012-14) bookended by a pair of Stanley Cups. Williams won the Conn Smythe Trophy as Stanley Cup Playoff MVP in 2014 with 25 points (9g, 16a) in 26 games. He was in Philadelphia from 2000-04, when he was traded to Carolina, where he played until 2008 when he was traded to the Kings at the deadline. He was a member of the Hurricanes’ 2006 Cup-winning team, and scored the empty-net goal in Game 7 of the Finals to secure the win.

Williams has won seven Game 7’s in his career, nearly twice as many as the Capitals have in their 40-year history – four.

When taking into consideration that Braden Holtby, Evgeny Kuznetsov and Marcus Johansson remained unsigned restricted free agents, the signing likely spells the end of Joel Ward’s four-year tenure in Washington, as the 34-year-old Ward sought similar annual average value. Also,  it also could fill the Caps’ need at top-line right winger, depending on future moves made this offseason and, ultimately, the plan that head coach Barry Trotz has in mind.

Washington reportedly has $14.4 million left in cap space after the deal.

About Eric Hobeck

Eric Hobeck is a Staff Writer for District Sports Page covering the Redskins and Capitals. Eric contributes to high school sports coverage at InsideNova.com. He served as sports editor of The Rotunda at Longwood University for two years, where he was also the men’s basketball beat writer. He hosted a campus radio show for three years and called basketball and baseball games for the station’s award-winning sports team. You can follow Eric on Twitter @eric_hobeck.

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