Photo: Sanford Myers

After running away with the President’s Trophy during the 2015-16 season, the Capitals have been accepting awards right and left during the offseason. Braden Holtby won the Vezina Trophy as the league’s best goaltender, Barry Trotz took home the Jack Adams Award as the league’s best coach, Alex Ovechkin won his fourth consecutive and sixth Richard Trophy overall, and Jay Beagle was tabbed with two of the weirdest plays of the season. On Monday, Evgeny Kuznetsov joined in on the fun, being named the top breakout player of the 2015-16 season by NHL Network.

The Blackhawks Artemi Panarin, the Sharks’ Martin Jones, the Jets’ Mark Scheifele, and the Penguins’ Matt Murray rounded out the top five. No other Capitals were named in the NHL Network’s top 40.

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Photo: Pavel Datsyuk’s Facebook page

Tuesday, Washington Capitals center Evgeny Kuznetsov was busy volunteering his time, serving as a guest instructor at Pavel Datsyuk’s Skill Development Camp. With all that magic under one roof, I’m surprised the hockey rink didn’t implode.

Datsyuk, who retired from the NHL and signed a two-year deal with Ska St. Petersberg 11 days ago, thanked Kuznetsov for his contribution on his Twitter account.

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Photo: @kuzy092

Nearly 14 months ago, Evgeny Kuznetsov’s wife Nastia gave birth to the couple’s first child, an adorable baby girl named Ecenia. “I am a dad,” Kuznetsov wrote in Russian, the night Ecenia was born. “Thank you for my daughter, my love.”

Fast forward to Monday, Kuznetsov posted a photo of one-year-old Ecenia wearing a diadem, cape, and a shirt which has the phrase “I’m the boss” on it. Kuznetsov captioned the photo “Царевна👼🏼.” According to RMNB’s Igor Kleyner, the word translates to tsarevna, which means the daughter of tsar or the daughter of a king.

Ecenia is Evgeny’s princess.

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Photo: Drew Hallowell

In his second full season in the NHL, Evgeny Kuznetsov broke out. The 24-year-old center tallied 20 goals for the first time in his career and led the league in primary assists. He also led the President’s Trophy winning Capitals with 77 points, becoming the first player not named Ovechkin or Backstrom to accomplish that feat in a decade.

Kuznetsov’s big season was not lost on voters. The Chelyabinsk native received one fourth place and one fifth place vote for the Hart Trophy as league MVP. Kuznetsov was one of 23 NHL players to receive a vote.

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Evgeny Kuznetsov: 2015-16 Season Review


The truest real talk I could ever speak: The 2015-16 season was the season in which Evgeny Kuznetsov became a star in the NHL.

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Photo: KP.ru

Evgeny Kuznetsov has remained busy since winning a bronze medal at the 2016 World Championship last week. The Caps’ leading point scorer returned home to Chelyabinsk and, on Monday, participated in a youth hockey camp at the Traktor hockey school.

“Today was Evgeny Kuznetsov’s turn to share his experience with our young hockey players,” wrote one onlooker, Alfia, on Instagram. “Once an ordinary guy from Chelyabinsk, Evgeny has become an example for young athletes through his diligence and hard work.”

Kuznetsov led some skating and stick-handling drills before eventually cheesing in a a group picture with the campers.

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2016 IIHF Ice Hockey World Championship

Photo: IIHF

Team Russia destroyed the United States’ National Team 7-2 in Moscow Sunday. Washington Capitals Alex Ovechkin, Evgeny Kuznetsov, and Dmitry Orlov will leave the 2016 World Championiship with bronze medals.

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MOSCOW, RUSSIA - MAY 19: Former Soviet National Team player Alexander Yakushev and newly elected IIHF Council Member Franz Reindl present the Player of the Game awards to Russia's Alexander Ovechkin #8 and Germany's Thomas Greiss #1 following Russia's 4-1 quarterfinal round win at the 2016 IIHF Ice Hockey World Championship. (Photo by Andre Ringuette/HHOF-IIHF Images)

Photo: Andre Ringuette/HHOF-IIHF Images

Thursday in Moscow, Team Russia fell behind early in the first period to Germany 1-0. But when the Russians came out for the second period, they unleashed what the IIHF described as an “unrelenting onslaught.” Russia put on 37 shots on goal, scored three times in the second stanza, and defeated Germany 4-1.

Washington Capitals captain Alex Ovechkin scored his first goal in four World Championship games, beating Islanders’ goaltender Thomas Greiss through the pads.

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Over the weekend, Andre Burakovsky took his World Championship bio picture for Team Sweden and it’s… definitely something we need to talk about.

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The Russian National Team remained undefeated Tuesday with the Caps trioka — Alex Ovechkin, Evgeny Kuznetsov, and Dmitry Orlov — on the roster. Russia beat Team Sweden 4-1 to finish second in Group A.

But the victory didn’t come without a scare – especially for Caps fans. In the second period, Evgeny Kuznetsov absorbed a dangerous hit from Swedish center Mikael Backlund as he skated into the offensive zone. Kuznetsov, who did not have the puck, was hit the head and shoulder by Backlund. Kuznetsov, woozy, needed help to get off the ice, but returned several minutes later after applying ice on the bench.

Team Russia head coach Oleg Znarok commented briefly on the play in his post-game press conference.

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