At this point, one thing’s crystal clear: Nicky loves sixty-nine. Ever since changing his number early last week, Backstrom has morphed into the Swedish Gretzky, tallying 8 points in 4 games. In his previous 5 games with that other number, he had 3.
After suffering a rare loss to Severstal on Friday, newly-named/temporary captain Alex Ovechkin vented about the officiating, inferring implying that some calls would have been made only at a kids’ game. On Sunday, with Yuri Babenko still out with injury, Ovechkin kept the C and practiced leadership of another kind. 2:45 into overtime and on the power play, Ovechkin, who played a game-high 29:09 minutes, crashed the net to knock a rebound past Pekka Rinne, giving Dynamo Moscow a 3-2 win over Dinamo Minsk (who recently severed ties with Evander Kane).
“This is a new team, I don’t know most of the guys here,” Ovechkin was quoted as saying by Dynamo’s official website. “Even if they offered me the C, I would decline. This team has leaders, veterans. And then a player with a big name shows up and muscles his way in? It would be disrespectful.”
Circumstances have changed. As Ovechkin and co. suited up against Severstal Cherepovets on Friday, normal Dynamo captain Yuri Babenko was unavailable (without explanation). Ovechkin was awarded the temporary captaincy of the team. Despite having Ovi as “kapitan,” Dynamo suffered a rare defeat, 4-2 loss to Severstal.
On November 14, 2012, In KHL, Video, By Fedor Fedin
Nicky celebrates his hat trick. (Photo credit: KHL.ru)
Fresh off their week-long break for national team competition, Alex Ovechkin, Nicklas Backstsrom, and the rest of Dynamo Moscow crew returned to action Wednesday against infamous Vityaz Chekhov. It was worth the wait. Backstrom, who finally switched his number during the Karjala Cup break, went APE NUTS in his new 69 jersey, registering his first career KHL hat trick and scoring the game’s decisive goal – an overtime game-winner.
While Backstrom was dominant, registering six shots during 22:04 of ice time, his BFF Ovi was no slouch either, assisting on one of Nicky’s goals and firing nine shots on net in 27:05 of game action.
“Hey! They spelled my name wrong! What gives!” (Photo credit: hctorpedo.ru)
When Nicklas Backstrommade his debut for Dynamo Moscow Monday, he was surrounded by familiar faces. Alex Ovechkin flanked him at left wing on the first line and former teammate Semyon Varlamov was in net for Lokomotiv. Dynamo had no trouble getting over that potential awkwardness however, turning in one of their most solid wins on the year, a 3-0 shutout of Lokomotiv. Ovechkin, who sure was in a punchy mood that day, had a goal and an assist. Backstrom also contributed a helper.
On Monday Nicklas Backstrom, sporting his new #99 jersey, made his debut for Dynamo Moscow and returned to a familiar spot: centering Alex Ovechkin on the top line. The BFFs clicked instantly.
Backstrom assisted on the first goal of the game, a snapshot by Ovechkin past Lokomotiv Yaroslavl goaltender (and former teammate) Semyon Varlamov on the power play. Ovechkin would add an assist in the third period (and also challenge half of Lokomotiv’s roster to a fight). Dynamo won 3-0.
Let’s start with a disclosure: we aren’t actively covering the lockout. Financial negotiations (and their public face) are all about posturing, tedium, and equivocation, whereas our principal interest in hockey has always been scoar, moar, and goals. That said, our Alex Ovechkin has spoken out about the ongoing melee between NHL ownership and players, and it’s definitely newsworthy.
If we speak in Russian, the NHL provided a beautiful dream to the media and fans, but in reality it’s a lie. It’s showboating. The league is trying to show that they are kind of working, trying to save the season, but they offer nothing new. It’s all the same, just in different words.
In the interview, Ovechkin carries some water for the players’ association, but he ends with a bombshell: he is willing to walk away from the NHL if the new CBA is no good.
With his newly signed BFFNicklas Backstrom in attendance, Alex Ovechkin continued his point-per-game pace in the KHL, scoring his fifth goal of the season in Dynamo Moscow’s 4-1 win over Atlant Moscow Region. In 16:34 of ice time, Ovi had four shots on goal and — oh yeah — broke a pane of freaking glass with his head.