Holtby acknowledges 2020 playoffs could be final run with Caps
Braden Holtby is focused solely on pursuing a second championship with the Washington Capitals this summer, but the pending unrestricted free agent recently acknowledged this could be his final run with the club he's spent his entire 10-year career with.
"My focus right now is to win a championship, and moving forward is to find the next best place to win a championship with," Holtby told NHL.com's Tom Gulitti. "Hopefully it's here, hopefully everything works out, but you never know. So right now, you live in the moment and we have an exciting opportunity to have some fun."
Holtby's five-year, $30.5-million contract expires at season's end, and the Capitals have a younger, cheaper option to turn to in Ilya Samsonov if they opt to let Holtby test the open market. Although Samsonov appears to be ready to take over on a full-time basis, Washington head coach Todd Reirden said in June he expects Holtby to get the "first crack" at the starters role when play resumes in August.
Holtby was drafted by the Capitals in 2008 and has been the club's starter since 2013. Over 468 appearances, the 30-year-old has managed 282 wins along with a .916 save percentage. He's also won a Vezina Trophy (2016) and a Stanley Cup (2018) during his tenure in the nation's capital.
However, Holtby put forth the worst statistical season of his career this year, owning a .897 save percentage across 48 games.