Sunday, December 03, 2006


On Ovechkin

"The only thing more unexpected than the Washington Capitals' 7-4 victory over the Eastern Conference-leading Buffalo Sabres last night at Verizon Center was the sight of Alex Ovechkin, the Capitals' star player, getting ejected."

That's Tarik El-Bashir, in today's Washington Post. I like El-Bashir, but I think he's a tad off base in portraying Ovechkin as Francis of Assisi. Ovechkin is a physical player, unlikely to ever win the Lady Byng. Furthermore, junior hockey fans are unlikely to forget how Team Russia taunted the American team in the 2005 World Juniors semi-finals. The two men leading the Russians in the taunting? Ovechkin and Evgeni Malkin. The Americans were so furious that they threw their support behind Team Canada in the finals, asking Canadian players to beat the Russians on their behalf. Ovechkin lipped off before the championship game as well, before Dion Phaneuf shut his mouth during it. To be fair, Ovechkin was a kid at the time, and he's behaved himself in the NHL, but I can't say I was very surprised by his cheap shot on Daniel Briere last evening.

I don't see how Ovechkin can avoid being suspended for that, but then again, I haven't understood anything the league has done this year in terms of meting out punishment. Clearer video can be found here.


Ovechkin likely won't get suspended because he's a first-time offender. But Buffalo is unlikely to forget about that cheapshot for a long time. He'll get what's coming to him eventually.

Why do I feel like it was someone from the league who just posted that message? :)

I like how Ovie combines toughness with goal scoring ability but that's just a very dangerous hit right there. Briere's back is turned and he's given up on the play and you have to wonder WTF Alex was thinking.

Whoa, that was dirty. The league is sure dropping the ball this year on suspensions.

Love the guy, but wow, what a dirty hit.

Clearly, Ovehckin had a good 2-3 seconds to decide that he wanted to nail Briere, long after he had dished off the puck.

What constitutes a suspension these days?

Well call me paranoid but the guys are biased in their judgements. I am fricken' annoyed that there are so many tough guys forced to curb their checks because they get penalised for every single thing they do. However some guys get away with tripping and running other kids over.

And the forkin' instigator rule prevents any retaliation. And Ovechkin is a guy in the good books. I doubt much will actually happen to them via management & suspension but people will be aiming at him a lot more often.

And in defense of Ovy & Malkin, these guys are still young. Do you remember what you did at their ages? I'm sure down in their itty bitty hockey skates they're a bunch of frat boys eventually. Malkin fleeing from Russia in my opinion just shows how simple they can assume the league to be.

Besides, I'm somewhat evilly amused by taunting winners.

No suspension.

One thing I love about our success the past two years at the WJC is shutting those Russians up. Ovechkin, Malkin, the fat goalie they had two years ago.

Kovalchuk etc etc.

Teenagers are teenagers that much is true (and here I show my grumpiness as I age) but I really really hate that shit.

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