ovechkin-assist

Photo: Russian Hockey Federation Instagram

In Russia’s 3-0 quarterfinals win against France on Thursday, Washington Capitals captain Alex Ovechkin said he felt about 90% playing and was uncomfortable wearing a custom knee brace the Team Russia medical team special-ordered for him after suffering a leg injury four days prior.

Playing Sweden on Saturday, Ovechkin still didn’t feel 100%, but he did switch things up. According to Slava Malamud, Ovi wore a new knee brace. He also tallied an assist in Russia’s 3-1 win over Sweden. Russia will play in the World Championships gold medal game on Sunday.

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Evgeny Kuznetsov: 2013-14 Season Review

It took four years, but Evgeny Kuznetsov finally suited up with the Washington Capitals. And with that, millions of Facebook commenters immediately stopped saying stuff like, “beleive it when i see it” and “already sick of his premadonna russian already [sic].” That alone made his season a success to me, but let’s consult the stats anyway.

BTW, today is Kuznetsov’s 22nd birthday!

By the Numbers

17 Games played
13.1 Average time on ice per game
3 Goals
6 Assists
42.3% Shot attempt percentage during 5v5
41.2% Goal percentage during 5v5
10.4% On-ice shooting percentage during 5v5
91.2% On-ice saving percentage during 5v5

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Photo: Andre Ringuette/HHOF-IIHF Images

Team Russia beat the living tar out of Team USA at World Championships today with a final score of 6-1. Washington Capitals forwards Alex Ovechkin and Evgeny Kuznetsov scored goals, while Hershey Bears goalie Pierre McGuire David Leggio came on in relief of Tim Thomas in the second period.

Leggio allowed one goal on eight shots in 28:57 of ice time.

Let’s take a look at the highlights.

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ovi-scores-world-championships

Photo: R-Sport

Team Russia walloped Switzerland in the opening game of the 2014 World Championships in Minsk today. The fabled Russian offense, mostly inert in Sochi, delivered five goals while goalie Sergei Bobrovsky turned away all 27 shots he faced from the Swiss.

Newly named captain, Alex Ovechkin, also scored a goal and tallied an assist in the beatdown.

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alex-ovechkin-victory-loaf

Photo: R-Sport

Washington Capitals captain Alex Ovechkin and the team he’s now captaining, the Russian National Team, arrived in Minsk, Belarus earlier today for the 2014 World Championships, which begin tomorrow. When Team Russia arrived at the President Hotel, they were greeted by a hotel official. Then things got weird.

As Ovechkin approached, the official came up to him and said (as translated by Fedor Fedin), “We’re welcoming all of you, dear friends, and we’ve been assigned by the Belarus National Committee manager to present you this Karavai, hoping this will be a victory Karavai.”

The official gave Ovechkin a giant loaf of bread. A victory loaf.

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Photo: Heike Feiner/eishockey-online.com

Hershey Bear and Team Germany goalie Philipp Grubauer shut out Team Russia in a pre-World Championship exhibition game. The Germans won 3-0.

Both Alex Ovechkin and Dmitry Orlov sat out (Ovechkin’s absence was described as part of an “acclimatization and adaptation” period by the team’s spokesman), while Orlov’s omission from the line-up seemed to be a part of the rotation process that comes from having 30 players (27 skaters) on the roster. Evgeny Kuznetsov played on the team’s second line.

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Alex Ovechkin Captains Russian National Team

Photos: FHR.ru

On Thursday, Washington Capitals forwards Alex Ovechkin, Evgeny Kuznetsov, and Dmitry Orlov all played in a hockey game for the first time since the Caps’ dreadful season ended two weeks ago.

The three Russian Caps suited up for Russia’s national team in what was basically a glorified exhibition against Germany to warm up for the World Championships. Team Russia won 4-2 and scored three of their four goals in 1:38. None of the Caps players scored or tallied a point.

One interesting fact we can take from the game is that Ovechkin was captain of Team Russia. It’s the first time he’s led the national team since 2005, when he was the 19-year-old captain of Russia during the World Junior Championships. Though his captain patch totally looks velcroed on.

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evgeny-kuznetsov-practice

Photo: Sport-Express

After scoring nine points in 16 games with the Caps, Evgeny Kuznetsov has flown back across the world to play for Russia’s national team in the upcoming World Championships. On Tuesday, Kuznetsov spoke to Vladislav Domrachev of Sport-Express after practice and talked more about his NHL debut and how his English is progressing.

Apparently the NHL is like bobsledding or something.

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alex-ovechkin-flies-home

On Monday, the Washington Capitals held Breakdown Day at Kettler Capitals Iceplex after missing the playoffs for the first time in six years. Alex Ovechkin spoke about his disappointment, Evgeny Kuznetsov talked about sneezing, and Dmitry Orlov learned what corsi is.

Four days later, all three Caps Russians jumped on a plane to go back home.

You know what that means: selfies on an airplane.

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evgeny-kuznetsov-interview

Photo: Chris Gordon

What could be a bigger downer than giving an interview right after missing playoffs by by just four points? How about giving an interview after missing two playoffs by four points in two months! Because’s that’s what happened to Evgeny Kuznetsov: first in the KHL, when last year’s Gagarin Cup finalist Traktor came up short, then again when the Caps missed their chance by the same margin.

That was on Kuznetsov ‘s mind when we chatted on breakdown day.

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