Featuring Ceremonial Puck Drop by Capitals alumnus Devante Smith-Pelly
The Washington Capitals will host Black History Day presented by Capital One on Saturday, February 25, featuring a ceremonial puck drop by Capitals alumnus Devante Smith-Pelly.
During warmups, before the Capitals take on the New York Rangers, players will wear special Celebrating Black History warmup jerseys designed by Robert Generette III, also known as Zilla, that will be signed and auctioned off to benefit the Capitals Capital Impact Fund. Additional information on Black History Night activities will be announced the week of February 20.
Smith-Pelly, an eight-year NHL veteran and 2018 Stanley Cup champion, announced his retirement from professional hockey on December 30, 2022. Drafted by the Anaheim Ducks in the second round, 42nd overall, in the 2010 NHL Draft, Smith-Pelly became the third-youngest player in Ducks history to appear in an NHL game when he made his debut on October 7, 2011. Smith-Pelly signed with the Capitals as a free agent on July 3, 2017, and played two seasons with Washington. In his first season with the Capitals, Smith-Pelly registered 16 points in a career-high 75 games. The Scarborough, Ontario native appeared in all 24 playoff games during Washington’s run to the Stanley Cup, registering eight points. Smith-Pelly scored a goal in the final three games of the Stanley Cup final, including the game-winning goal in game four and the game-tying goal in game five. Smith-Pelly’s three goals in the Stanley Cup final were tied with Alex Ovechkin for the most on Washington. In 395 career games with the Capitals, Anaheim Ducks, Montreal Canadiens and New Jersey Devils, Smith-Pelly recorded 101 points.
Prior Black History Night puck drop participants have included Capitals alumnus Bill Riley and his granddaughter Kryshanda Green — the former and first Black captain of the Ryerson University Rams women’s hockey team — Capitals alumnus Joel Ward, U.S. Representative John Lewis, NHL legend Willie O’Ree, and Fort Dupont Cannons coaches, including Cannons founder Neal Henderson.