Lost amid the news Wednesday afternoon that longtime Caps defenseman Mike Green had signed a 3-year, $18-million contract with the Detroit Red Wings was the news that another Caps D-man, Steve Oleksy, had signed his own 1-year, $575,000 deal with the Pittsburgh Penguins.
Thank you to all the incredible people that made my 3 years in Wash & Hersh memorable but ecstatic to be part of the @penguins organization.
— Steven Oleksy (@StevenOleksy) July 1, 2015
Oleksy had been in the Capitals organization for the last three seasons, playing in 62 games (3 goals, 16 assists) for the Caps and 153 games for the AHL Hershey Bears (12 goals, 29 assists), where he served as the team’s captain since March. An under-appreciated defenseman, Oleksy made his mark as a fan favorite for his scrappy style and his personable nature. Here are just seven (that’s his minor league number!) of the many reasons we’re going to miss him.
Photo: Kyle Mace/Chocolate Hockey
Saturday night, the Hershey Bears and the Bridgeport Sound Tigers (the New York Islanders affiliate) played one of the most entertaining and violent American Hockey League games of the season. The Bears and Sound Tigers combined to score seven goals and earn nearly 200 penalty minutes. The game featured a chaotic line-brawl, a goalie fight, eight ejections, and 12 misconducts.
By now, you’ve probably already seen the video (taken by RMNB alumnus Kyle Mace) of Caps prospects Steve Oleksy, Connor Carrick, Chris Brown, Liam O’Brien, and the Bears’ goalie combatant, Pheonix Copley. By Sunday night, the video had amassed over 130,000 views.
Much like Jay Beagle, I discarded my dearest flipper this season and traded it in for an iPhone 6. On Saturday, I went to the Hershey Bears game and went crazy with its video settings and some attachable camera lenses I bought. The results were incredible.
From my glass side seats I captured Mike Moore‘s overtime game-winning goal and the Bears subsequent celebration. Like they celebrated freaking inches from me. While I didn’t notice it live, former Caps enforcer Liam O’Brien kissed Moore on the noggin. Also, I’ve never seen Philipp Grubauer so excited in my life.
No matter if it was Steve Oleksy doing a double skate stop in front of the net or Connor Carrick flipping the puck to himself skating up the ice, there are so many amazing things we miss in hockey at full speed. So I slowed them down.
Here are the Hershey Bears in slow-motion.
Photo: Steve Oleksy’s Instagram
Hockey players are tough; here’s another story about that.
Let’s go on a trip to PPL Center, where the Hershey Bears on Wednesday night took on the Lehigh Valley Phantoms. Thirty-two seconds into the game, Steve Oleksy took a rough run from defenseman Brandon Manning.
Binky was like oh hell no and dropped his gloves. As Manning and Oleksy pawed at each other in the corner, Oleksy’s helmet came off. Manning’s stayed glued to his head.
Photos: Washington Caps Instagram
In random Caps celebrity news, recent call-up Steve Oleksy presented NASCAR legend Jeff Gordon with a personalized Caps jersey.
I’m not quite sure why Gordon was in in the bowels of Verizon Center this evening. Maybe it’s because the Wizards play the Spurs tonight at 7 tonight. Or maybe Alex Ovechkin is ready to take his talents to Daytona Beach and, oh great, now I’m worried.
Photo: Kyle Mace of Chocolate Hockey
Steve Oleksy, stuck in Hershey due to Washington’s defensive depth, scored one of the biggest goals of his career Sunday, well at least in my opinion. Thirty-nine seconds into the first period, Binky sneaked into the slot and scored Hershey’s 2014 Teddy Bear Toss goal.
Oleksy’s tally unleashed 17,295 stuffed animals which were thrown onto the ice by fans at Giant Center. All of the bears will be donated to needy children, which is so awesome.
Photo: Kyle Mace
The Hershey Bears lost their season opener to the Norfolk Admirals, but a goal by Steve Oleksy gave the hometown fans something to cheer about.
Oleksy, having narrowly missed a roster spot with the big club, will spend the season in the AHL unless he gets called up. Plays like this are exactly what Oleksy needs to stay on Washington’s radar.
We’re here to bring you the important Capitals news of the day: Steve Oleksy posed with Tom Wilson before Wednesday morning’s practice session. Just look at that.
Oleksy smiles like he’s a fan meeting his favorite athlete. Wilson is all like “wut iz dis?”
Oleksy’s enthusiasm may have to do with Tom’s excellent hairdo. Around noon Oleksy posted the photo on Instagram with a funny caption.
Photo: Washington Capitals
Tuesday morning, the Washington Capitals published photos on their Facebook page of Steve Oleksy, Matt Niskanen, and Chris Brown getting in a skate at Kettler Capitals Iceplex. One of those photos seemed a bit odd to reader Matt, so he sent us a tweet.
@russianmachine Oleksy changed his number from 61 to 62? Looks that way from the pics on Caps FB page. Maybe we're signing Afinogenov 😉
— Matt O'Rourke (@MattORourke) August 27, 2014
Hmmm, yeah that’s not right.
With all the number changes happening recently, I went directly to the source to inquire if all those Binkaholics in the Maryland, Virginia, and DC-area needed to buy a new #62 sweater.
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