There Goes Alex Ovechkin Again: All About Himself, Not the Team

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Is this the year for Alex Ovechkin?” That was the Puck Daddy headline when Ovi started the season on a torrid scoring pace: five goals in four games. Then Ovi’s shots and goals fell off and the Caps’ goaltending got holey, and now the conversation has shifted.

Last week, Jeff Marek asked PJ Stock what he thought of Ovechkin’s play. “I find his game very predictable,” Stock said. That’s a fine enough opinion and he’s entitled to it. Marek then turned to John Shannon, who compared Ovechkin’s attitude to that of Tampa’s Steven Stamkos:

“[Stamkos] talks about team first. It’s always, ‘we did this.’ …When Ovechkin talks, it’s ‘I did this.’”

Ovi is selfish. He values individual achievement over team success. He’s Eurotrash.

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ovechstache

The Ovi Movember stache begins.

During Wednesday’s loss on national TV, much was made of Alex Ovechkin‘s five-game pointless streak. It was the first time in his career he’s ever done so (which is amazing if you think about it), and he was filleted by NBCSN after the game for his lack of leadership, selfishness, etc.

Ovechkin tallied an assist on Saturday night. In the first period of Sunday, Ovechkin put up a goal and an assist against the Arizona Coyotes. The goal came on the power play, putting the Caps up 3-1.

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wilson-goal

Seven minutes into the first period, Washington Capitals forward Tom “Big Stamos” Wilson began skating with Nicklas Backstrom and Alex Ovechkin on the first line. It took just one shift with the superstars for Wilson to score his first goal of the season, responding to an Arizona Coyotes power play tally 49 seconds earlier.

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ovi-backcheck

People have dogged Alex Ovechkin for his defense over the years, but this season the conversation is a little bit different. Here’s a fun example. A few weeks ago, NBCSN held a panel discussion and Mike Milbury talked about why he thought Ovechkin shouldn’t block as many shots. Wut?

Ovechkin is making more of an effort defensively this season, and tonight came his greatest effort yet. The Russian machine broke up a two-on-one after hustling back and making a suicide dive towards the slot.

Look at this.

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Alex Ovechkin Almost Scores From His Knees (GIF)

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Some of the greatest plays of Alex Ovechkin‘s career have come when he’s not even on his skates. There was The Goal, when he scored on the Coyotes while doing a barrel roll in the slot. Then there was that one time he almost scored against the Rangers while sitting on his bum.

Against the Lightning on Saturday, Ovechkin passed the puck to himself and got a semi-breakaway. He fell over, but that’s no reason not to get a shot on goal.

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I love the mustaches. (Photos: @a0gr8)

In amazing Caps-related holiday news, Russians Alex Ovechkin, Evgeny Kuznetsov, and Dmitry Orlov have decided to dress up as The Three Musketeers for Halloween. I’m sure this is because they’ve all been inspired by the brilliant Alexandre Dumas novel and not because this was the easiest trio-themed costume they could find at their local Party City.

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ovechkin-practices-one-timer

Last night marked the first time in Alex Ovechkin‘s career he has gone five consecutive games without registering a point. Despite the Caps dominating the Red Wings in possession, they lost again. In fact, they’ve lost three out of their last five games in spite of having the best 5-on-5 possession (56.52% CF) in the entire league, as Adam Vingan reported.

This morning before practice, Ovi came out to the ice early and practiced one-timers from The Ovi Spot, determined to end both trends.

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liam-mchugh

In case you missed NBCSN’s pregame coverage of the Caps game, NBCSN anchor Liam McHugh used plus-minus as a way to discredit Alex Ovechkin‘s 51 goals last year. Clearly Mr. McHugh can’t be bothered with knowing that plus-minus is a silly way to measure a player’s effectiveness. He’s probably also a really big Jeff Schultz fan.

Mr. McHugh’s use of plus-minus didn’t go unnoticed by Caps fans on Twitter.

But know this, Mr. McHugh sees you Caps fans. He sees you and he’s bringing the sass.

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ovechkin-gives-away-stick-yay

Just like the Vancouver Canucks did on Sunday, the Washington Capitals hosted their own Hockey Fights Cancer night at Verizon Center. The Capitals wore purple jerseys during warm-ups (photos) and 11-year-old blood cancer survivor Ryan Darby got to participate in the ceremonial faceoff with Detroit Red Wings captain Henrik Zetterberg and Caps captain Alex Ovechkin.

Darby, cute as a button, clapped wildly as Ovechkin made his way to the dot. Then he got a special surprise when they were done: a game-used stick from Alex Ovechkin.

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mike-green-on-top-of-the-world

It’s Mike Green’s world and we’re all just living in it.

On Tuesday morning, Hockey Night In Canada’s Elliotte Friedman published his latest 30 Thoughts column. The article mostly focused on Randy Carlyle’s hairy situation in Toronto, but it also featured six juicy tidbits of information on the Capitals.

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