horizontal Ovi Patrick Smith

Photo: Patrick Smith

With only a couple games left before the NHL shuts down for the Olympics, the international hockey press’ interest in Capitals captain and Sochi goodwill ambassador Alex Ovechkin has increased from Unhealthy to InsatiableSpeaking with Sovetsky Sport correspondent Pavel Lysenkov during his recent pre-Olympic media tour, Alex Ovechkin recounted Olympics of yore, cheering fiancee Maria Kirilenko onto winning bronze in London, and meeting 22-time Olympic medalist Michael Phelps.

And also the time he nearly wrecked his car a few weeks ago, but didn’t. So that’s good.

Your translated interview is below.

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neuvy

Photo: Luke Glendening

Editor’s Note: Peter and Chris are totally not here tonight. They’re at the Neutral Milk Hotel (who?) concert at DAR Constitutional Hall. Instead of having Ian recap the game poorly in English, we’re throwing a bone to our Russian readers tonight and letting Igor do the recap in Russian Machine’s native tongue! Please translate what we wrote in the comments below. If you’re nice, we’ll help.

Сегодня Кэпиталз привезли свой кошмарный Январь в Детройт. Десять поражений в течении первого календарного месяца нового года и предпоследнее место в таблице своего дивизиона – это уже довольно серьёзно, ну а то как команда проиграла вчера свой поединок в Коламбусе… перечень неприятных впечатлений довольно длинный – совершенно безалаберная игра в обороне, беззубая атака, невероятно “бесполезный” (аж -5!) Овечкин, потенциально серьёзная травма Грина – в общем ситуация хуже некуда. Всего одно очко отделяло Детройт от Кэпиталз  в таблице Восточной Конференции перед игрой, да и играли Ред Уингс в прошедшем месяце не намного лучше чем Вашингтон; если бы регулярный сезон закончился сегодня, обе команды вместо плэй оффс учасвовали бы в североамериканском варианте Кубка Надежды – на площадках для гольфа. А ведь Ред Уингс не пропускали борьбу за Кубок Стэнли уже почти четверть века! Смогут ли парни в белых свитерах с зимней классики закончить этот жуткий месяц на победной ноте – или Лорд Волан-де-Морт опять появится на нашей стартовой странице?

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Alex Ovechkin Calls His Injury “a Micro-Bruise”

OvechkinSharks

Photo: Rob Carr

Tonight, Alex Ovechkin will miss his second straight game with some kind of lower-body aliment. From New Jersey, Katie Carrera of The Washington Post reported that it was a groin injury. The man himself, though, has not been made available to the media — at least not in English. However, in a recent interview with Pavel Lysenkov of Sovetsky Sport, Ovi discussed the injury, which he termed “a micro-bruise.” Ovi also discussed Alex Semin‘s new spot on the Russian Olympic team and whether or not he goes to church.

Here’s your translation:

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ovindar

Washington Capitals captain Alex Ovechkin is pretty good at hockey (when he’s not hurt), especially scoring goals. Everybody knows that. Special correspondent for Sport-Express Slava Malamud is pretty good at writing, especially writing about hockey– even more so when writing about people who are good at hockey like Alex Ovechkin. If you don’t know that by now, it’s only because you are too lazy to learn Russian just to avail yourself of Slava’s pearls of hockey wisdom and assorted hilarity.

Or maybe you are just waiting for RMNB to give you those Slava’s pearls on a silver platter, so you can partake in his body of work without leaving your pitifully monolingual comfort zone. If that’s your excuse, you are in luck. This latest Slava creation is just too good to ignore (and also he dared us). After all, in the history of western civilization since Julius Caesar, as far as we know only Commodus and Robespierre with his cohorts managed to successfully, albeit very temporarily, undertake a comparable feat… So without further ado, we bring to you a new calendar! No more boring Februarys, tiresome Junes, or dreary Novembers – every month from now on shall be an OVI-month! Let the OVI-time begin!

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Photo credit: @konstantinu74

Team Russia announced its Olympic roster today, and– to no one’s surprise– Evgeny Kuznetsov’s name is not on the list of 22 skaters who will fight for gold in Sochi next month. That’s an unfortunate twist for a young player who, two years ago, delayed his jump to the NHL in order to improve his chances of making of making the Sbornaya. The omission is not even controversial, as Kuzya has had a nightmare season, including a slew of injuries and below-par play when healthy.

But fear not, the few and proud members of the Kuzya fan club. While your hero’s hockey career has taken a very circuitous path, Zhenya has been testing the waters in an alternative occupation while recovering from his latest injury. No, not driving a bulldozer, dabbling in real estate market, head-butting a sitcom character, or torturing an imaginary microphone with his interpretation of an old pop song. Kuzya is trying out a new hobby that’s a bit less exotic: TV hockey analyst. Last Sunday, Evgeny acted as color commentator for Chelyabinsk local channel OTV’s broadcast team during the 2nd and 3rd periods of Traktor’s game against the visiting Slovan of Bratislava. Kuznetsov shared with the TV audience a few bits of hockey wisdom and insider information from the team’s locker room. During intermission, Kuzya provided expert analysis of his team’s performance (“What did I like? That we scored two goals and did not allow any.”… “Who has been the standout so far? Our goalie and the defense. And all of our forwards.”) and made a prediction for the final period.

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GraboPatrickSmith

Photo credit: Patrick Smith

The Washington Capitals 2013-14 season has been a roller coaster, but their big summer acquisition, Mikhail Grabovski, has been one of the team’s most reliable performers. The 29-year-old Belarussian has adjusted splendidly to his new team and is on pace to comfortably exceed his career-best season total of 58 points — all earned while centering just about every winger on the Capitals roster. Grabo has received accolades from coaches, teammates, and analysts alike– a significant turnaround from the disastrous end to his time with the Maple Leafs.

So, how is Misha settling in the new city, how does he get along with gracious host Alex Ovechkin, and, of course, what led to the conflict between him and his old coach? Those are just some of the questions Igor Tichonenko of the Russian Service of Voice of America asked Grabo a couple of weeks ago when they met up at KCI. They went for a ride in Grabo’s car — in spite of having roomed with his captain for a few months now, Grabo does not drive 250 km/hr (at least not with camera rolling). You can watch the whole interview, and just in case your Russian has gotten a tad rusty, you are welcome to cheat and follow along the translation below.

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ovechkin-with-milestone-puck

Photo credit: Igor Kleyner

Alex Ovechkin had a pretty good night at the rink Tuesday. The Washington Capitals captain almost single-handedly (okay, Nicky and Grubi helped) dragged the team out of the 3-0 hole they had dug. Four goals and an avalanche of hats later, Ovi’s night to remember was in the books. And that outrageously awesome tying goal celly – was Alex the Great going for a swim at center ice?  Showing off a triple Salchow? Channeling his inner Superman? Whatever it was, it must have been something Alex devised ahead of time and saved for a special occasion, right?

Well, maybe not.

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Photo credit: rsport.ru

With the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi approaching, Washington Capitals captain Alex Ovechkin has been doing a bunch of Russian-language interviews to promote the games and his sponsors. Over the weekend, Ovi spoke with R-Sport and– after he got in a plug for Gillette and his steely character– he talked about his family, Maria, and his favorite spots in Washington. It’s a good read.

Weird thing: despite being world-class athletes back in the day, Ovechkin’s parents don’t understand why Ovi needs more than one car. Kids these days.

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dmitry-orlov

Photo credit: Justin K. Aller

Coming into training camp, Washington Capitals defenseman Dmitry Orlov was looking forward to his third full season of hockey in North America. A couple of months into the season though, his hopes and expectations remain unfulfilled, as Orlov started the season in Hershey, then lost some time battling an eye infection, and then spent the rest of the time alternating between a healthy scratch with the Caps and an occasional game or two with the Bears. While there had been speculation regarding the reasons behind Dima’s numerous short-term assignments to Hershey followed by gameless call-ups to the Capitals, last night, The Washington Post’s Katie Carrera’s finally shone light on this mystery – a special clause in Orlov’s contract allows him to sign a deal in the KHL if he is not on NHL roster for at least 30 days this season by January 1st.

Just a couple of hours before the Capitals announced that Orlov was returned to Hershey for the fifth time this season, we caught up with Dima after the Caps’ morning practice and talked about the situation and how he is handling it.

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Photo credit: Vitaly Gubin/HC Traktor

Yesterday we had an alarming report out of Chelyabinsk, where it appeared that Washington Capitals prospect Evgeny Kuznetsov injured his shoulder for the umpteenth time.

Traktor Chelyabinsk’s head coach Valery Belousov wasn’t very encouraging after the game, saying that Zhenya “hurt his shoulder a little.” Today, however, the news out of Chelyabinsk is a bit more reassuring, as reported by Yuriy Golyshak of Sport-Express and translated below.

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