You knew Alex Ovechkin and the Washington Capitals would be hearing it after yet another disappointing postseason, and yet another playoff defeat at the hands of the Pittsburgh Penguins.
The Caps won their third Presidents’ Trophy (for best overall regular season) since 2009, and all three times they have failed to advance past the second round of the playoffs. The Pens have knocked them out of the playoffs in the second round two years in a row — both after the Caps won the Presidents’ Trophy.
There has been a funny joke going around about the “Alex Ovechkin” drink special, which is considered a “White Russian with no cup” — a reference to his lack of Stanley Cups.
Primanti Bros., a famous Pittsburgh-based restaurant chain, got in on the fun by creating and sharing this video Thursday:
Alex Ovechkin has a perfectly reasonable explanation for why Anaheim Ducks captain Ryan Getzlaf was incensed after his team’s 5-3 loss to the Capitals on Sunday night. And it has nothing to do with Getzlaf’s accusations of repeated diving. No, it’s all about the hair, or in Getzlaf’s case, lack thereof.
In case you missed it, Getzlaf took issue with what he perceived as Ovechkin’s repeated embellishments on the ice.
“I didn’t know he was going to dive tonight the way he did all over the f—ing ice,” Getzlaf said via Puck Daddy’s Greg Wyshynski. “That part of it’s a little (more) embarrassing, pardon my language. He’s a great player. He’s going to score goals and make plays. That other stuff’s embarrassing.”
On Tuesday, Ovechkin explained his side of things.
Ovechkin, who scored twice and drew two penalties in Sunday’s win, went on to deny any allegations of diving and chalked it up to Getzlaf’s frustration with Anaheim’s second loss to Washington in 10 days. You can judge for yourself if Ovechkin was putting on a show after taking a slash from Getzlaf.
Was an Instagram photo one of the reasons she decided to move on?
Over the weekend, Ovechkin’s friend, Vitaly Fridzon, who is a Russian basketball player, shared a photo of Ovechkin and Russian gymnast Karolina Sevastianova sitting together in the back seat of what appeared to be a small airplane or helicopter. Fridzon later posted two more pictures that included Ovechkin and Sevastianova, though both seemed pretty innocent.
“I have made a decision to break up our engagement,” Kirilenko said, as translated by For the Win. “There are a lot of reasons, but I wouldn’t want to go in detail. I’ll say just that our relationship is over, but I respect Sasha as a person and an athlete and sincerely wish him athletic success in the future.”
Largely because of injuries, Kirilenko has fallen to No. 92 in the World Tennis Association rankings from her peak position of No. 10 last year. Ovechkin, who usually travels to Maria’s tennis tournaments when possible, was not at Wimbledon this year like he was in 2012.
Alex Ovechkin suffered a right leg injury during an IIHF World Championships game between Russia and Germany on Sunday. Russia won the preliminary game 3-0, but Ovechkin got hurt on a hip check from Marcus Kink in the third period.
Ovechkin was helped off the ice and taken to a hospital.
The Capitals put out a statement saying they are aware of the injury and in communication with the Russian medical staff. Ovi had 79 points in 78 games for the Caps this season. His 51 goals led the league, but was not enough to get the Caps into the playoffs.
Spoiler alert — the Russian national hockey team broke the hearts of its home fans on Tuesday at the Winter Olympics. Finland simply out-hustled the Russians and was the better team for three periods, advancing to the semifinals where they will take on Sweden. Alex Ovechkin was very little help in the 3-1 loss.
Ovechkin may have been fatigued, but there were several moments in the third period where he looked like he was not skating hard. Russian head coach Zinetula Bilyaletdinov was quick to call him out by name after his team was eliminated.
”Tough to explain the loss, of course, why scored so little,” Bilyaletdinov said, according to Puck Daddy. “Players who score so many goals for their clubs, like Alex Ovechkin who scored 40 goals for his club [didn’t score]… Right now I cannot explain that.”
Ovechkin scored 1:17 into Russia’s first game of the Olympics, and that ended up being his only goal of the tournament. He is currently leading all NHL scorers with 40 goals, so you can understand why his performance was disappointing.
A lot of the blame will be placed on Ovechkin’s shoulders, but he was not the only one who failed to fulfill expectations. In fact, plenty of people are blaming Bilyaletdinov for the loss against Finland since he chose to start goalie Semyon Varlamov over Sergei Bobrovsky, who stopped all seven shots he faced after Varlamov was pulled.
Ovechkin may have been expected to carry the team, but the disappointment is shared from top to bottom. Winning in front of the home fans isn’t always easy. Russia showed us that in Sochi.
Russia is one of the favorites to bring home a medal in hockey in front of its home fans at the Winter Olympics in Sochi. If Alex Ovechkin, who is having a fantastic year with the Washington Capitals, can be the prolific scorer he is capable of being, Russia could very well win the gold.
And if they don’t, Ovechkin will still be wearing the pride of Russia on his feet. Most hockey skates are black, but Ovechkin’s Olympic skates are painted with the colors of the Russian flag.
Many have predicted that Ovechkin will be the tournament MVP in his home country. He has already won the award for most patriotic skates.
The only thing worse than taking a puck to the face and gashing your chin open during a game is taking a puck to the face and gashing your chin open during practice. Alex Ovechkin could attest to that, although the Washington Capitals star seemed to take it quite well.
According to the Washington Post, Ovechkin took a puck to the face during Thursday’s practice and had to leave to get it stitched up. Ovie shared a couple of pictures of the injury on his Twitter account. That one was after he received 22 stitches. This is the before, which was captioned “It’s hockey hahaha.”
Alex Ovechkin was so bored with the NHL lockout that he decided to get engaged. Just kidding — I’m sure Ovie loves his tennis star girlfriend Maria Kirilenko very much, which is why he decided to pop the question on the last day of 2012.
Ovechkin tweeted the photo you see above on Monday before making the following announcement:
Good for him. The two have been dating for over a year now (more pictures of Kirilenko here). The people of Washington, D.C. may not be enthused because they don’t seem to like Ovechkin very much anymore, but the engagement gives us something to talk about regarding an NHL player. With the way things have gone with the lockout, those moments aren’t easy to come by.