Photo credit: Bruce Bennett
I appreciate the gesture, but I’d really rather not have my team’s $10-million superstar throwing his body in front of ballistic vulcanized rubber. – RMNB game 6 recap
Washington’s one surviving newspaper beat writer, Katie Carrera, dropped this bomb on Thursday afternoon:
Alex Ovechkin played the final two games of the Capitals’ first-round series against New York with a hairline fracture in his left foot, according to a league source with direct knowledge of the winger’s injury.
Ovechkin reportedly sustained the injury blocking shots during the first period of game six. We wrote about it at the time.
GIF by welshhockeyfan
In games six and seven, Ovechkin scored no points and recorded just six shots on goal.
Despite the injury, which will require only rest to heal, Alex Ovechkin played for his country at the World Championship in Helsinki. Despite scoring an goal and an assist in his only game with Team Russia, Ovechkin was eliminated from the tournament.
The injury reveals a sometimes-hidden truth. Shot-blocking, while considered a sign of commitment, is often dangerous or reckless move. In order to stop a low-risk shot by Ryan McDonagh (whose lifetime shooting percentage is a lowly 5.2%), Ovechkin actually hurt his team by impairing the skating ability of its best player.
Not a good trade.