After finishing the regular season as the NHL’s best team, the Washington Capitals fell short of their ultimate goal, losing to the Pittsburgh Penguins in six games during the semi-finals. Captain Alex Ovechkin hasn’t made it past the second round of the playoffs during his entire 11-season career, but despite some national media reports, this season’s early exit was not Ovechkin’s fault.
Ovechkin, along with John Carlson, led the team in points (12) this postseason. Ovechkin finished second to TJ Oshie in goals with five. During breakdown day Thursday, Ovechkin admitted to struggling through the regular season with a nagging injury.
“It was my back, lower back,” Ovechkin said. “Right now it’s gone. The trainers did a great job to keep me safe and healthy.”
This weekend, we also learned of something else Ovechkin was dealing with privately. According to a Russian TV program, two days before the playoffs began Alex Ovechkin’s father Mikhail suffered a heart attack, which caused the family to call for an ambulance.
After Thursday’s game, the Washington Capitals announced that Alex Ovechkin would sit out this year’s All-Star Game due to a nagging lower-body injury. Barry Trotz said Ovechkin had been dealing with the issue since mid-November. Ovechkin joked that he aggravated the injury while clearing snow from his house.
If Ovechkin had been dealing with an injury, Ovechkin’s father Mikhail never knew about it.
Alex Ovechkin scored his historic 500th NHL goal tonight and what a magical moment it was. The goal brought all of Ovechkin’s teammates to the ice in celebration. It inspired a three-minute long standing ovation from the Verizon Center crowd. Ovechkin’s mother Tatyana cried happy tears.
But Ovechkin’s father Mikhail was relatively subdued at the milestone. It wasn’t until Papa Ovi got a shout-out during his son’s post-game interview that he got truly rowdy.
On Thursday, Sovetsky Sport’s Pavel Lysenkov spoke to Alex Ovechkin’s mother, Tatyana Ovechkina, on her 65th birthday. Much of the conversation was devoted to the two-time gold medalist’s career in basketball, but Lysenkov managed to get one adorable tidbit about the Russian mother’s personal life too.
Ovechkina revealed how she and Ovechkin’s father, Mikhail, first met 47 years ago. She was an 18-year-old athlete and he was a soccer player.
Photo: Pavel Lysenkov
Apparently giving away a car, fulfilling the wish of an 8-year-old with diabetes, going out on a sushi date with a 10-year-old with Down’s Syndrome, giving away countless sticks and pucks, and secretly supporting a bunch of Russian orphanages is not enough.
According to a press release from the Moscow Region’s ministry of physical culture, sports, and youth programs, Washington Capitals captain Alex Ovechkin has donated 70 bags of hockey equipment to the Sergiev Posad boarding school, an orphanage operated by the Russian Orthodox Church.
Per Championat.com and a Fedor Fedin translation:
We’re thinking of you, Mikhail! (Original Photo by @mkpanda78)
As the world settled in to watch Thursday’s women’s final between USA and Canada, word came from Arlington that Alex Ovechkin‘s father Mikhail had undergone heart surgery earlier in the week. As of now, Mikhail Ovechkin, 62, is out of intensive care. Capitals GM George McPhee told the press that Ovechkin’s heart issues began after Russia’s prelim game against Slovakia last weekend.
Photo was touched up to remove the NHL executive handshake-passing the ref a 100-dollar bill. (Photo credit: Greg Fiume)
With their 5-0 loss to the New York Rangers in game seven, the Washington Capitals have been ungently booted from the postseason again. A period of healing and reconciliation now begins (also probably some suntans), but first we need to take a look at the sadness. The infinite, infinite sadness.
Let’s just take it all in, mope around for the next day or two like red-rocking Eeyores, and wallow in the wah wah wah (that’s what a sad trombone sounds like). It’s not fun; no, but we need to give the grieving process time to do its thing.
Russian Machine Never Breaks is not associated with the Washington Capitals; Monumental Sports, the NHL, or its properties. Not even a little bit.
All original content on russianmachineneverbreaks.com is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)– unless otherwise stated or superseded by another license. You are free to share, copy, and remix this content so long as it is attributed, done for noncommercial purposes, and done so under a license similar to this one.