The Washington Capitals' first pick in the 2011 NHL Draft does not come until the end of the first round at No. 26, but over the course of franchise history, the Caps have had success with late first-round picks. In fact, in the past nine drafts, Washington has had 26 picks between Nos. 12 and 60 overall and 10 of those are now NHL regulars, nine of them with the Caps. Below is a sample of current Caps that fall under that category.
- 2009 - Marcus Johansson (24th overall)
- 2008 - John Carlson (27th overall)
- 2006 - Semyon Varlamov (23rd overall)
- 2004 - Jeff Schultz (27th overall) and Mike Green (29th overall)
- 2003 - Eric Fehr (18th overall)
- 2002 - Alexander Semin (13th overall) and Boyd Gordon (17th overall)
All of these players have become integral parts of the Caps' core. Last year, the Caps selected Evgeny Kuznetsov with the 26th overall pick, but he has elected to say in Russia for one more season before coming to the Caps. Regardless, the Caps have built their current team from within, which has included solid drafting for years. This weekend, the Caps will try to repeat it.