Photo: @plysenkovRUS

If you’ve ever wanted to see the Russian machine play with actual Russian machines, today is a good day for you. On Thursday, Alex Ovechkin and the rest of the Russian National Team did just that, visiting an armored fort near Minsk, which is a part of the Stalin Line.

The Stalin Line.

The line, created in the 1920s to protect the USSR against attacks from the west, consists of concrete bunkers and gun emplacements. It’s basically a less elaborate Maginot Line, which may mean something to approximately 2% of you.

On their off day, Ovechkin and his comrades visited a remaining part of the line, close to where the World Championships are taking place in Belarus. Just like that shirtless soccer game a few years ago, team officials probably hoped the event would bring the team closer together.

Maybe that happened, maybe it didn’t. For sure, it became a giant photo op and no one took it seriously.

The fort.

A smiling Ovechkin poses with a bomb. Is that the appropriate behavior here? Not, like, running away?

This would probably make backchecking easier.

Selfie time.

what u say milburyhahahahhaha)))))))

Ovi shoots a gatling gun.


Priceless Ovi face. (Photo: @plysenkovRUS)

Ovechkin and Team Russia get on a tank.

There’s no way Ovi isn’t playing Candy Crush right now.


This is not at all awkward. (Photo: @plysenkovRUS)

Moar awkwardness on the tank.

Kuzya was there too. Okay this is silly.

Not sure.

  • MarkGreenway

    This Post desperately needs an audio clip of Beninati saying “bombs away”

  • Lawrence

    Ovi with a gun? What has the world come to…This is what Ovi was thinking while shooting the gatling gun:

  • Myan

    I like that Ovi’s commitment to live-blogging the whole experience is well-documented 🙂

  • Catherine__M

    Is Team Russia having trouble with its defensive line? If so….I’m not sure that this trip is such a great inspirational tool…..or maybe it’s a cautionary tale?

  • Red

    There’s a Ukraine joke in there somewhere….

  • donatelife

    Ian, I told you they were spies!

  • Rando

    That’s not a Gatling Gun (which is hand cranked from 1862). That’s more likely a Maxim Machine Gun…

  • yv

    Yes, it was Maxim machine gun and after 100 years still working.

  • slavallwyn

    I just watched a video of Ovi riding away on a tank. Years of fandom have payed off.

  • Graham Dumas

    Вы че, это не “Gatling Gun”, а пулемет “Максимка”!

  • 70Caps
  • MDPhD

    Yeahh they are so proud that their friends and relatives
    fighting in Ukraine now.

  • 70Caps

    Si isn’t close friends with nbc:

  • Rhino40

    Exactly Graham. And that “bomb” Ovi was posing with was not really a bomb either. Based on the context, my best guess is that it is a 76.2 mm shell for the F-34 tank gun, which was the primary weapon in the T-34 tank from WWII.

  • Rhino40

    …and another good catch on the hardware.

  • Graham Dumas

    Seventy-six… point… two… millimeters. Full… metal… jacket.

  • Igor Kleyner

    You don’t really expect Ian to know a bomb from an artillery shell, right? He is a lover, not a fighter! Oh, and that Maxim thing… I told him what it was, but he decided to go off the script!

  • This reminds me of the Zamboni/Ice Surfacer argument.

  • Shaun Phillips

    Yup, you can see the breach behind him.

  • Shaun Phillips

    Yeah he should know this blog is full of nerds and geeks (and not just about hockey items) and he will get corrected on things like this. 🙂

  • Erik Rubinson
  • Fred Merc

    It is on as well.

  • Alex

    Do you really believe that his heart is in the United States of America? In Washington DC?!
    Do you seriously believe that Ovi is the Man to win the Stanley Cup for the Capitals?
    Do you think that the Russian propaganda hero and Putin’s friend is the only man in Washington’s locker room deserving enough to wear the letter C on his jersey?
    If so, you are very, very naïve. I’ll open your eyes on it. As ALL Russians, he hates and despises America and Americans-“Americos”, or in their mind fat and retarded idiots. The only American thing he likes is American money! Thus, it’s time to get serious about it and start paying Ovi in rubles( for -37!?), about three tons of worthless paper a month.
    I am sorry for pathos but Washington DC, is a very special place. This is the Capitol of the Free World!
    It deserves an American roster with an American Captain.
    I am a Washington fan for almost 30 years now, but until and unless Ovi will be sent to Dynamo Moscow; count me out.
    I will boycott Ovi and other Russians on the team and all other Russians in the NHL.
    We have to send a clear message to Leonsis and the NHL!
    Proof that you are not just a regular hockey fan! You are a Citizen of this great nation!
    The United States of America!

  • Jonah

    looks like that russian machine…never breaks!