Alex Ovechkin Appears on the Today Show (Video)


For a while, the Caps have teased Alex Ovechkin’s appearance on the Today Show, set to occur the morning of January 20. They didn’t expect, however, for it to come less than 12 hours after Washington’s fifth straight defeat, their second blowout loss in a row. No time for rescheduling though.

While the rest of team flew back to Dulles after the game in New York last night, Ovi stayed behind for his 7:45 am hit with Carson Daly, which was accompanied by an Olympic-themed feature on the Great Eight.

Here’s the video (click here to view on mobile):

If you can’t watch, this the back-and-forth between Ovi and Daly:

Good to have you here, brother. Nice to see you. How are you feeling?

Not bad.

We’ve known the Olympics would be in Russia since 2007 and here we are less than three weeks. How excited are you?

Very excited. It’s a big honor for me and my country. I’m very proud.

Let’s walk through the Olympics. This is your third there. Two thousand six — I don’t have to tell you, you remember all this — Russia lost the bronze game; 2010, Russia loses to the home ice team in Canada, they win the gold. How badly do you and your teammates want to medal on home ice ?

I think everybody wants to win gold medals, especially playing hometown, home country, so i’m sure every hockey player, every man, every fan in Russia wants to win. But, you know, it’s going to be hard because every team have a strong team.

Talk about the boss we saw in the piece, your mom. You’ve got Olympics in your blood. She won two golds in basketball. Why does she sit alone?

She’s superstitious. Since I was probably 14, she never sit with my dad. It’s the kind of situation where you leave it alone.

Is that extra pressure? She’s an Olympian.

Yeah, she’s an Olympian, but, you know, we didn’t talk about it a lot. And it was different.

In light of some of the news this morning, Alex, not surprising to you, some tourists are nervous about going to Sochi. What do you want them to know about your home country?

I don’t think it’s going to be dangerous. I think as President Putin said, we have security, but i’m sure everything’s going to be fine and everybody’s going to have a good time.

Well, good luck to you. So good to see you. And good luck to the caps. Thank you very much.

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  • suffering caps fan

    pro hockey players do not belong in the Olympics.

  • Matt

    That’s a dumb thing to say about a debatable point without providing any supporting statement.

  • Huh?

    Where is the video?

  • Jim Kelly

    It didn’t show up on mobile for me, try on a desktop.

  • Here’s the direct link if you’re having trouble:

    Also updated the post with a transcript.

  • Eric

    How come I never hear the same argument about the basketball team. Aren’t the Olympics supposed to be about the best athletes in the world competing against each other.

  • Justin

    What about the Olympic-themed feature?? Is the video for that somewhere?

  • Jim Kelly

    As somebody who lives in another country and pretty much constantly looks like a moron fumbling through a foreign language, it is oddly comforting to see Ovi fumble and squirm a bit with his words. It’s almost like we’re the same… you know aside from that bit about being one of the greatest hockey players of all time.

  • Not that I can find.

  • Matt Lauer

    To be honest I generally agree that the Olympics should be reserved for amateur athletes. Professionals have every opportunity in the world to ply their craft and show their talents, but the thrill of representation is heightened for amateurs where they have essentially this one shot on the big stage. I can’t really say that there’s a particularly “strong” argument against professionals participating, it’s more of a sentimental one.

  • Patrick Neimeyer

    Ovechkin and Team Russia are going to put it all on the line at Sochi 2014. Can’t wait to see the great teams battling it out for the Gold. I only wish that fire can translate back to the Washington Capitals and get us some freakin’ points!

  • Steve

    I keep hearing (/reading) people saying this, but I don’t understand how you would change it. Would it be like World Juniors? So the same teams from a few weeks prior? Would there just not be a World Juniors that year? What about kids in the NCAA/Canadian juniors who have been drafted by NHL teams? What about kids playing in the AHL? Do the Swedish leagues and the KHL, etc. count? I understand the wanting only amateurs to compete, on paper, but in reality hockey isn’t like figure skating when you retire then go pro. Pro figure skaters are no longer at the top of their game, pro hockey players are. So if you want to have the highest level of competition at the Olympics, there’s no other way to do it that I can see. But maybe I’m just thinking about it all wrong.

  • yv

    One former Ovi’s teammate in KHL Dynamo Moscow, Soin, is out from the Olympic team because of injury. So, looks like there is now chance for Ovis and our friend A. Semin to be included into the team. Sasha scoring now in every game and maybe will change Bill’s heart.

  • Matt Lauer

    At this point I don’t know that there is a sensible way to “undo” it. And I think that your point about where the distinction between a pro and an amateur appears is a valid one. It may be a thought more relevant to a bygone era: I mean, a glaring case-in-point was the 1980 game between the Soviets and the Americans, where one side was nothing if not a group of professionals, while the other side was clearly amateur. And at that point, everyone was always complaining about how nobody could compete with the Soviets because they kept sending a professional team. You could potentially make the argument that the inclusion of professionals creates conflicts of interest, as you have people normally on the same team starting to compete with each other (Ovi vs. Nicky, Toews vs. Kane, Malkin vs. Crosby, etc…), a risk that would be substantially lessened if amateurs competed. Though I’m not sure that’s a particularly strong case.

  • Justin Collins

    The Olympics are about as big as it gets in sports, why shouldn’t the best hockey players in the world get to play in them?

  • GuestZ

    The fire does translate, but unfortunately it feels like it only for Ovi and no one else. GMGM GOTTA GO

  • harjot singh

    if only speaking about hockey thats what the IHF is for right?

  • Tyler

    How come you didn’t interview him bro? TRL muscled his way in there huh…

  • InfernalDark

    Guess the video is unavailable outside the US. Waiting for the youtube upload.