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Morning roundup: Ovechkin 'not going to change'


(Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)

Morning roundup

Alex Ovechkin was unusually subdued (video here) a day after receiving a two-game suspension, but he assured reporters that his on-ice demeanor won't change one bit:

"I'm not going to change anything," the Washington Capitals' star winger said, addressing the media for the first time since the NHL suspended him for two games for a controversial hit on Carolina's Tim Gleason Monday night.
Asked about his reaction to the suspension, Ovechkin said, "maybe it gets me more angry."

Click here to read the full story.

Tarik will be online today at 2 p.m. to take as many pressing questions as he can fit into an hour.

Tonight's matchup:

 

Florida Panthers (10-12-4)
Washington Capitals (16-5-6)
Verizon Center, 7 p.m.
TV: Comcast SportsNet
Radio: 820 AM, 1500 AM
Awesomeness: It's dollar dog night.

*Is Ovechkin a dirty player or just aggressive? (The Washington Times)

*The Pens would probably go with the former. From the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review:

"To be honest, I thought he was getting suspended when he hit Kaleta from behind last week," Penguins defenseman Brooks Orpik said. "If you look at how he hits, it's all or nothing. He takes 10 strides before he hits guys."
Ovechkin's collision with Gleason was reminiscent of the knee-on-knee hit that injured Penguins defenseman Sergei Gonchar during the second round of last season's playoffs.
"It was a really similar hit," Penguins captain Sidney Crosby said. "Really similar."

*Junior Seau talks to Puck Daddy about Alex Ovechkin -- "that guy is a jokester" -- and his stint as an equipment manager for the Caps. (We can all thank Versus now.)

*The Hockey News' Bob McCown says that suspending Ovechkin while he's hurt is a futile disciplinary tactic:

While I have long subscribed to the theory the NHL's disciplinary policy is laughable, even I admit this one is so unusual and so rare, no one could have anticipated it.
An obvious suggestion would be to "suspend the suspension" until Ovechkin is able to play. That could be easily determined by allowing him to play one game once he is healthy and then have his punishment kick in from the next game. Of course, that would be logical and this is a league that too often ignores logic in favor of precedent.

*Ted Leonsis tells Ovechkin: "To thine own self be true." (Ted's Take)

*Elliotte Friedman wonders if Ovechkin's unwillingness to change will cost the Caps a Stanley Cup. Gee, I don't know, but I'd guess his willingness to score goals probably balances that out.

*Dave Molinari says it's okay to stray from the rulebook now and again, but Ovechkin takes that notion "to the extreme." (Pittsburgh Post-Gazette)

*Detroit's Brad May on Ovechkin's hit: "Incidental contact! Remember, it's a physical game. People forget that. I have no issue with him. He's fast and aggressive and stuff happens." (TSN)

*Eric Fehr's first goal of the season came when he used a certain high-scoring teammate's stick. (D.C. Sports Bog)

By Lindsay Applebaum  |  December 3, 2009; 5:43 AM ET
 
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Ovechkin 'angry' about suspension
Next: McPhee: Two-game suspension 'excessive'

Comments

The headline in the Times piece is awful -- did not reflect the story.

Looking forward to seeing the Caps again tonight. Florida coming off a big shootout win against the Avs last night might have a head of steam (and fully recovered from the goalie assault, I guess), but also might be tired. It will be very interesting to see the lines tonight.

Posted by: Sonyask | December 3, 2009 6:15 AM | Report abuse

Did we really expect any quotes about OV coming out of Pittsburgh to be positive????
No one really cares what players, media or the unemployed Joe next door thinks in da'burgh.
Post quotes from sources that really matter.

Posted by: jotay131 | December 3, 2009 6:24 AM | Report abuse

So do we get Sasha back tonight?

Posted by: Sonyask | December 3, 2009 6:28 AM | Report abuse

MAKE EM BLEED!

Posted by: ludeman95 | December 3, 2009 6:30 AM | Report abuse

Do they think we CARE about pittsburgh's opinion? NO, we know they hate ovie. I don't remember any of our players making comments after crosby's cheap shot(s).

Posted by: rachel216 | December 3, 2009 6:34 AM | Report abuse

Nothing like a couple of Penguin quotes to get my blood flowing first thing in the morning.

That article failed to note Cindy's lipstick color while giving the interview.

I really like the words from Ted Leonsis. I am also of the camp that Alex should be a teentsy-weentsy bit more careful. "Picking your battles" means doing so when you can win; if you got hurt, you picked the wrong battle.

Posted by: tominfl1 | December 3, 2009 6:34 AM | Report abuse

Funny statement coming from likes of Crosby or Orpik. It's not like OV broke a guys neck with a check from behind or punched a guy from behind in the jewels.

Posted by: bpete24 | December 3, 2009 6:35 AM | Report abuse

orpick and crosby- why don't they just focus on their team and stop worrying about us!!!

Posted by: rachel216 | December 3, 2009 6:40 AM | Report abuse

OMG! who rattled brooks orpik's chain? to even consider asking that pig to comment about someone else playing dirty and getting a suspension for it? that piece of dirt spent the playoffs systematically injuring players on opposing teams!!!!! give me a break!!!!!!!!! ask semin how he feels about asking orpik's opinion on hits! >:(

Posted by: spinner-33 | December 3, 2009 6:40 AM | Report abuse

I agree, who was the Einstein who picked Orpik, of all dirty players, to comment on Ovi? I "heart" Ovechkin. Yes, it would be smart for him to be more careful so HE doesn't get injured and to stop feeding the media frenzy on what a "dirty" player he is.

Posted by: dccitizen1 | December 3, 2009 7:05 AM | Report abuse

@Sonyask

Yes, Sasha Semin should be back.

Posted by: CapsFan75 | December 3, 2009 7:20 AM | Report abuse

I have to agree-why of the papers in the world are you linking us to Pittsburgh's Tarik. There is nothing good that they would ever say. They are our competitors. And of all players--Orprick--REALLY! Who cares what that jerk thinks. Frankly this just makes me mad.

Posted by: Capsyoungguns | December 3, 2009 7:21 AM | Report abuse

Detroit's Brad May on Ovechkin's hit: "Incidental contact! Remember, it's a physical game. People forget that. I have no issue with him. He's fast and aggressive and stuff happens

How true indeed. I still can't figure out how OV's hit on Kaleta was a penalty and the hit on Perreault behind the net during the last game wasn't...

Posted by: kkd76 | December 3, 2009 7:23 AM | Report abuse

@ bpete24 & @tominfl1

And as for Orpik and Crosby, oh what hypocrites they are. It's not like they are Lady Bing candidates themselves.

Crosby is the guy who punched a guy in the nuts at the faceoff circle last year.

Orpik is the guy who injured Semin (multiple times) in the playoffs last year. Here's the tally: nicked him in face early in game so he required stitches; slashed him in wrist; and he's the one responsible for injuring Semin's thumb.

Posted by: CapsFan75 | December 3, 2009 7:23 AM | Report abuse

Dave Molinari says it's okay to stray from the rulebook now and again, but Ovechkin takes that notion "to the extreme."

I don't even want to click on that link 'cause I don't want to give them any more business, but give me a break--when you've got Orpik and Cooke and Kunitz on your team and you're gonna say that Ovi takes it to the extreme?

Posted by: dfe1 | December 3, 2009 7:24 AM | Report abuse

Posted on previous thread:

Well gang,

There's now an open thread on the Alex Ovetjkin blog for fans to write their support for Ovi.

Here's the link:


http://alexovetjkin.blogspot.com/2009/12/lets-support-ovi-open-thread.html

Or you can get to it through the "Washington Hockey Daily" page or the Capitals Friendly Blog page.


Posted by: CapsFan75 | December 3, 2009 7:26 AM | Report abuse

@Capsyoungguns

I'm with you. Orpik and Crosby are the LAST two guys who should talk about dirty play. I detailed their deeds in a previous post on this thread.

Posted by: CapsFan75 | December 3, 2009 7:27 AM | Report abuse

Well Capsfans75 you were posting while I was writing. Thanks so much for the link. I will write.

Reposted from previous thread:

capsfan75-But what....! Of course he's not a bad man. The problem with selected quotes in the print media is that it doesn't capture the tone or expression of the speaker. And words taken out of context--the question to which it was answering--in the print media can be twisted as it has been in this case. There is nothing defiant in Ovi in this video--there is resignation in his facial expressions, in his voice, in the slump of his shoulders, in how quickly he shut down. This is a guy who thrives on his public interactions. This was hard for him, very hard.

As a researcher/writer by trade I read everything with a critical eye--was the quote taken out of context, did it actually reflect what the speaker was trying to say, and so on. I always go back to the original interview be it video or print and draw my own conclusions. And any cut-and-paste video or interview I regard as dubious.

Sorry but I think the media has got this interpretation wrong. Ovi is a very complex athlete and individual but the media likes one word quips and soundbites. No one of us would care to be summed up in a soundbite.

Of course we all understand what BB has to do--how to help Ovi play that edge with more maturity. To protect himself and have a long and valuable career as a Caps and as an once-in-a-generation athlete in hockey. We want to win many Stanley Cups with Ovi as the heartbeat of this team.

But I despise how he has become the scapegoat for so called "dirty" which is an entirely different word from "reckless" aggressive play on ice. I know that it was the timing, that the calls came too closely together, that the NHL was under pressure to start suspending "stars". But why were the refs assuming the borderline incidents were suddenly game misconduct worthy. It also began on the ice with the refs.

I have no doubt that Ovi and the Caps will come through this. This team is strong and skilled and supportive. There is more than good chemistry among them. There are real friendships. This will make the Caps battle hardened. We are tough warriors who WILL be the only ones standing at the end. Of this I have no doubt.

Posted by: Capsyoungguns

Posted by: Capsyoungguns | December 3, 2009 7:31 AM | Report abuse

Maybe it's been written somewhere but how many game misconducts has Ovi had in his career? I dont' recall any although he probably gets his fair share of penalties.

All this talk seems to imply that he is suddenly doing something different. He is playing the same. He has just been unlucky lately. Maybe players are learning to turn quickly to encourage a call, though I even doubt that. Unfortunately he is now on the radar of both officials and the NHL and he'll probably get called out again.

But he's a fabulous player and fun to watch. Leave him alone.

Posted by: rjma1 | December 3, 2009 7:33 AM | Report abuse

CapsFan75: Not only did Crysby punch another player in the Planters last year, but he did it from BEHIND while the other player was being HELD.

Cindy is like the faux tough guy in school who beats up some other kid while that kid is being pinned down by others.

Cindy was anointed last night as one of the Doofy Dozen, as was Orprick. He was last seen shopping for a new beret with Don Cherry.

BTW, no wonder Ovi seems like a "son" to me. His initials are AMO and my three daughters are CMO, DMO and TMO. The son I never had...

Posted by: tominfl1 | December 3, 2009 7:37 AM | Report abuse

@Capsyoungguns - In all fairness to Tarik, it was Lindsay who posted the link to the Sh*tsburgh Post-Gazette.

Go Caps!

Posted by: CapsChick | December 3, 2009 7:37 AM | Report abuse

Hey, another thing, from that picture, does my "son" have a tiny bit of grey creeping in? He's 24 and I'm 52 and he has more grey than moi?

Posted by: tominfl1 | December 3, 2009 7:41 AM | Report abuse

Geez I've got to get breakfast on and all I want to do is fume and post. It is sometimes so tough to be a responsible adult.

I hope the rest of the Caps out going for the juggler. Make a statement that the NHL and the other teams will get no quarter from us the Caps. Go for the blood boys--go for the blood!

Now breakfast.....!

Posted by: Capsyoungguns | December 3, 2009 7:41 AM | Report abuse

Fair enough--I blame Lindsay--I saw the links and skipped right over them. Who cares what Pittsburgh thinks? Lindsay of all the links in the NHL why Pittsburgh. And I'm not going there--it will just make me madder.

Posted by: Capsyoungguns | December 3, 2009 7:44 AM | Report abuse

@tominfl1

He seems like a son to me also. Even back in the early 80's, I said that if I ever had a son with a September birthday, I would have named him Alexander in honor of a friend I met on my very first job. A young government "hot shot" who was the mentor to a contractor just out of college. Who became a friend. He left the government, and went to a contractor. I went to work for him and worked for him for many years. This guy is just like Ovi. I actually enjoyed going to work, because of him.

BTW, the woman that Torts hit with the water bottle knew this guy also. (We are all at the same company.)

Posted by: CapsFan75 | December 3, 2009 7:47 AM | Report abuse

@tominfl1

So Mikhail and Tatiana had the son we both wish we had had.

Posted by: CapsFan75 | December 3, 2009 7:48 AM | Report abuse

Ovie has 2 Pearson trophies...I think that is good proof that the league at least believes his intentions are good and he has respct for the game and players! Why would the Post "post" a bunch of Pitt articles to get perspective

On another note...is Bradley a daddy yet?

Posted by: capscoach | December 3, 2009 7:51 AM | Report abuse

@tominfl1

Yes, Ovi started getting grey at 18. (My daughter who's his age told me she detected a strand of grey in her own hair.)

My old friend, Alexander, got grey early also and was white haired by 40.

Posted by: CapsFan75 | December 3, 2009 7:51 AM | Report abuse

@tominfl1, Ovi has said previously that he has had some gray hairs since he was 17, I believe, just like his dad. So if he doesn't do anything about it, I'd expect him to be pretty gray by the time he's 30.

Posted by: dfe1 | December 3, 2009 7:52 AM | Report abuse

Oops, I meant 40.

Posted by: dfe1 | December 3, 2009 7:54 AM | Report abuse

@Capsyoungguns

I agree with your assessment of the video. I thought the same thing. Ovi had a shielded look in his eyes, a hurt look. I don't like seeing that, either. However, I do think he was angry yesterday.
I was at the practice and he seemed angry on the ice, busting up his stick on the goal crossbar at the end. I just hope he channels it in a productive, not destructive way. I want him to stay who he is, too, but on the ice and not off of it.

@tominfl1, Capsfans75, Kirk, Hessone: In the late parenthood survey, I had my last at 42 (he's 11) and first at 35. All boys who play hockey, oldest now on W&M club team.

Several times people have assumed my youngest is my grandchild! I don't think I look that old. Usually these are folks whose own parents had them at 20 or younger and who themselves had kids that young. I always have to stop and think of their perspective from their own experience before I respond. It has taught me to be careful about assumptions.

Posted by: Steakum | December 3, 2009 7:55 AM | Report abuse

Just a reminder to all who care... Because we've been focused on Ovi lately.

Ovechkin has missed 6 games
Semin has missed 9 games
Knuble 8
Flash 11
Fehr 10

the D altogether has missed a dozen or more games...

We have 38 points. Tied for 1st in the East, with a game in hand. We are 2nd in the league behind San Jose who have played two more games than us.

In a few days we will get back Knuble and Ovi. That's exciting.

We also have the 8th highest rated defensive defensemen in Schultz and 15th in Jurcina.

We've only played 5 games within the division.

We have very little to complain about.

Oh, yea, E.F-N.Fehr...

Posted by: JSchon | December 3, 2009 8:05 AM | Report abuse

@steakum--I'm glad you posted about practice. It doesn't surprise me that he's angry on the ice. Anger can be channelled to win. He learned that at Mama Ovechkin's knee. This team needs to rally around and support him. Something I am sure they are doing.

Posted by: Capsyoungguns | December 3, 2009 8:07 AM | Report abuse

And thanks JSchon for reminding us of all the good the Caps have. There is a reason we are at the top of the standings and we haven't even played at our best yet. It is time for Caps fans to focus on al that is right with this team. And to get a good old fashioned hockey win tonight. At least we don't slam our hockey sticks against our goalie's head.

Posted by: Capsyoungguns | December 3, 2009 8:11 AM | Report abuse

@Steakum--had my son at 41. He's now 9. Plans to be in the NHL someday. Loves hockey, loves being goalie. No chance in Heck that he will ever be in the NHL but hey who am I to burst his dream. I only say "honey let's try for the travel team first!"

Posted by: Capsyoungguns | December 3, 2009 8:16 AM | Report abuse

Barring injury, this will be our lineup Dec 9th vs Buffalo.

Ovi/Backs/Knuble
Laich/Mo/Semin
Flash/Perreault/Fehr
Sloan/Steckel/Bradley

Green/Mo
Poti/Schultz
Jurcina/Pothier

We say goodbye to Alzner, which is the biggest disappointment.

Posted by: JSchon | December 3, 2009 8:21 AM | Report abuse

I really don't have to say anything here, but just a reminder: It's not my job to report only happy, positive things about this team.

In fact, I'd argue that it would be the exact opposite of responsible journalism to avoid linking to an article because the quotes might not be in favor of the local hockey franchise.

Posted by: Lindsay_Applebaum | December 3, 2009 8:27 AM | Report abuse

OH NO LindsAy, don't go changing your style just because some people here think your links are "reckless". OH NO we love reading stuff from the Pittsburgh rags!! OH NO how is it a minor burgh like Pittsburgh can have two daily newspapers and we only have ONE!! OH NO is Corey going to be carrying Tarik's camera now? OH NO Tarik now has more room in the press box to stretch out!!! OH NO who is he going to have beers with on the road? Vogel?? OH NOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!

Posted by: ChickenLittleCapsFan | December 3, 2009 8:38 AM | Report abuse

Also keep in mind that the only people that really care about this "controversial hit" are in Pittsburgh, so there really aren't any other sources to quote.

Posted by: snakegriffin | December 3, 2009 8:39 AM | Report abuse

Fair enough Lindsay_Applebaum--most of the time I am REALLY happy with what you, Tarik and the rest of the staff do. You are right. It is NOT the reporter's job to be the Caps public relations department. They have their own staff. It is your job to report and I do value that difference.

And this poster is happy that you and Tarik are so on top of the Caps and NHL news. When I get to read not one but many many links over the course of the day, it makes happy as I comulsively check this site. I come here first for my Caps news before I check other sites. Which is what the Washington Post wants. So it's a win win!

Lets go Caps and have a definitive win tonight!

Posted by: Capsyoungguns | December 3, 2009 8:40 AM | Report abuse

@Capsyoungguns
LOL - sounds like the conversations we had with our sons. They started out at house. Oldest 2 moved to travel as bantams (the oldest started at peewee age). However, the youngest is doing travel now at 1st year peewee (he played goalie part time as a squirt because no one wanted to do it full time, but now he's a skater). They love it and we do, too, despite the expense and time involved. At least it has kept them out of trouble!

Our NHL argument fell apart a bit when the Caps signed Jagr because my husband's last name is a form of that. Before then I told them their last name did not have enough consonants nor were they from Canada. Oh well!

GO CAPS tonight and every night. Hope Semin plays . . .

Posted by: Steakum | December 3, 2009 8:40 AM | Report abuse

Lindsay,
I don't think the issue is with the negative, just the fact you picked Pittsburgh. I am sure there are plenty of negative articles from the canada and other US hockey towns.

I don't think anyone,my self included,cares about what Pittsburgh has to say.

Posted by: hbcapsfan | December 3, 2009 8:41 AM | Report abuse

Lindsay: I think people, to some extent, are just kidding. Of course I don't hate Orpik or Crosby - I don't even know them. But, as JSchon so wisely points out, we really have nothing to complain about, so this gives us something. Also, anything Crosby says is a source of amusement.

The only thing I REALLY don't like is when you put a picture of Crosby or Hartnell or the ilk up at the top. I might not despise them as people, but I can despise them as players and therefore hate to see their pictures.

Signed,
Your Fan in FL
tominfl1

Posted by: tominfl1 | December 3, 2009 8:44 AM | Report abuse

Pittsburgh's "Ovie Envy" is ridiculous. I am sure Orpik and Crosby just couldn't wait to answer questions about Alex Ovechkin and not their upcoming game (sarcasm).

That being said where does Orpik get off talking about other players being dirty or making suspect hits?

Posted by: eorr53 | December 3, 2009 8:45 AM | Report abuse

Once again, how many game misconducts has Ovi had in his career? Thanks.

Posted by: rjma1 | December 3, 2009 8:49 AM | Report abuse

Anyone going to the Philly game on Saturday? I'm wondering if wearing a Semin jersey is a good idea...

Its either gonna be Ovi or Semin Jersey.

Posted by: OviFan08 | December 3, 2009 8:51 AM | Report abuse

@rjma1 - Once again: if you want to know, go do the research yourself. They may have it at their fingertips at the Post, they may not. It's public record, and easy to find.

@tominfl1 - I nominate Colin Campbell to the Doofus Brigade. Did anyone besides Japer's Rink recognize the fact that the Capitals are playing his son's team tonight?! And he suspended Ovechkin? Boy, do *I* smell a rat!

Posted by: irockthered | December 3, 2009 8:53 AM | Report abuse

irock: Campbell is definitely in the Brigade. He's part of the Doofy Dozen, a special attachment of crack troops attached directly to the brigade CO.

Crosby, Orpik, Hartnell, Pronger, Campbell, Gleason, Cooke, Briere, Kaleta, Avery, Aaron Ward, Mike Richards, and Ken Hitchcock is their CO.

Posted by: tominfl1 | December 3, 2009 9:03 AM | Report abuse

The walls are built up stone by stone,
the fields divided one by one.
And the train conductor says, "Take a break Driver 8.
Driver 8 take a break, we've been on this shift too long."...
"We can reach our destination, but we're still a ways away."

Posted by: Chad8 | December 3, 2009 9:07 AM | Report abuse

STICK EM IN THE HEAD!

Posted by: ludeman95 | December 3, 2009 9:09 AM | Report abuse

@OviFan08 - Can't go this time; out of town, but I'd wear the Ovechkin jersey to support our boy. If you wear the Semin jersey, be prepared to defend the pronunciation of his surname. Repeatedly.

Posted by: irockthered | December 3, 2009 9:09 AM | Report abuse

Has anyone been to one of the Season Ticket Holder Chalk Talks? There is one scheduled tonight with George McPhee and was wondering what people who have attended them thought of them. Thanks.

Posted by: MReilly9 | December 3, 2009 9:11 AM | Report abuse

Could the media blow this up any more? Seriously, has TSN forgotten that this is hockey? Brad May is the only one talking sense. Even if you think he is a dirty player, he certainly isnt the first nor will he be the last.

Posted by: Grape8 | December 3, 2009 9:11 AM | Report abuse

Someone correct me if I'm wrong but wasn't it Kunitz from the PITTSBURG PENGUINS who cross checked our goalie (Varly) in the throat during the playoffs last year? He got a $2,500 fine and no suspension for intentionally cross checking Varly in the throad. I don't remember anyone making a big deal of that outside of Washington but when Ovie does something everyone is ready to say he's the dirtiest player to ever put on a uniform. Watch Ovie's games over his careers. He is physical not dirty. 5-10 years ago (or more) the game used to be so much more physical. It wasn't until recently the NHL changed some of the rules to make the game more exciting. I don't necessarily agree with Ovie's 2 game suspension but I don't necessarily disagree with it either. I'm fine with them giving him 2 games to say they don't condone those types of hits. I don't care what Scott Burnside from ESPN.com, Pittsburg fans, or anyone else says about Ovie. However, I'm tired of hearing he's dirty or his reputation is tarnished over this BS. Ovie is the best player in the NHL today. He's the best player in Caps histroy. If healthy, he will probably retire as a top 5 player in NHL History. If he was Canadian or played for a more popular franchise (ie, Pittsburg or Detroit) he would have even more fans than he does. People who call him dirty are just stupid.

Posted by: DCSportsFan28 | December 3, 2009 9:18 AM | Report abuse

The Kaleta hit was BS. Crosby and the rest of those penguins just don't like Ovechkin. Call me paranoid, but I don't think the reserved nature of the canadians goes to well with Ovie's personality. Just wait til next year, we'll see what they say then.

Posted by: btolley | December 3, 2009 9:18 AM | Report abuse

Hey what's wrong with Lindsay linking to Pittsburgh papers with Pens players quotes? Don't they have a player serving a suspension? Don't they have dirty players (Orpik)? Doesn't that make them experts? :) haha (uh, keep in mind that Eaton said he wouldn't classify Ovechkin as a dirty player)

Posted by: BetterOffWithFedorov | December 3, 2009 9:18 AM | Report abuse

@irockthered - Thats what i was thinking. I wore my Ovi Jersey to Philly twice last year, and heard "why does every caps fan wear Ovechkin?"...among with a lot of other interesting comments.

Posted by: OviFan08 | December 3, 2009 9:20 AM | Report abuse

Sing along tonight at Verizon Center: "I want my, I want my, I want my M-V-P" [to the tune of "Money for Nothing"]

Posted by: GoBigRed4 | December 3, 2009 9:23 AM | Report abuse

@OviFan08 - Yeah, that is why I don't own an Ovechkin jersey personally. I have Green, and I'll be getting Fleischmann when I get my next one. Yay for losing weight! The Green jersey will then be my "oh my GOD it's cold out here!" jersey, and the Fleischmann one will be for most of the other times. :-)

Posted by: irockthered | December 3, 2009 9:24 AM | Report abuse

*Elliotte Friedman wonders if Ovechkin's unwillingness to change will cost the Caps a Stanley Cup. Gee, I don't know, but I'd guess his willingness to score goals probably balances that out.

hahahahah that cracked me up.
as for Crosby, fo someone that picks a fight with someone that isn't looking; he has no business commenting on the knee on knee.

Yeah, let's go around targeting people's knees and risking my own knee and career. Brilliant.

Posted by: MNMNT | December 3, 2009 9:26 AM | Report abuse

Did Orprik site his source?? We all know he can't count to ten all by himself.

Talking about the pot calling the kettle black.....

Posted by: Capsfannmiss | December 3, 2009 9:28 AM | Report abuse

I don't take what Crosby and Orpik say about Ovechkin to heart. Orpik is a cheap shot guy, as is Crosby (in addition to being a diver). If people want to criticize Ovie that is fine, but it has no value coming from guys who take cheap shots themselves.

Posted by: GoCaps08 | December 3, 2009 9:30 AM | Report abuse

I have no problem at all with Lindsay citing to other papers, including Pgh's. Why shouldn't we have the opportunity to know how others view Ovi? Skip it if you don't like it. Thanks Lindsay!

Ovi's first home game will be next Friday. Not usual hockey fare, but VC should cue up "don't go changing" after Ovi's first big hit.

Posted by: Sonyask | December 3, 2009 9:35 AM | Report abuse

It's a shame that they would even be questioned about the validity of the hit. I don't think the OV/Crosby fire needs to be fanned personally. The Canadian boy scout gets his say about the evil Russian. Big deal. We see what the North American media is reporting, I'm curious what the Russian media has to say...

Posted by: Chad8 | December 3, 2009 9:37 AM | Report abuse

@ irockthered - When i got the Semin one, i was deciding between him and Backstrom. I wish i would have gone with Backstrom now since i think he will definately be back next year. (hopefull semin too of course). I also thought about getting a Laich Jersey.

Bringing up the Knee on Knee hit.....I personally hope Ovi doesn't change as well. Someone in a previous post wrote it perfectly....No one would ever risk a knee on knee hit on purpose.

Posted by: OviFan08 | December 3, 2009 9:40 AM | Report abuse

Good news, guys. My Backstrom jersey arrived in the mail on Monday and he was a beast that night. Tonight will be the first time I get to wear it while watching the game, so if I'm doing my math correctly, he should be good for about 14 points tonight.

Earlier posts in this thread regarding Sasha's last name accurately represent the deciding factor in my purchase of a #19 instead of a #28, by the way.

Posted by: TotallyTacos | December 3, 2009 9:40 AM | Report abuse

According to russianhockeyfans.com:
"This is the second game misconduct in Ovechkin’s career, and both have come against the Sabres. He was ejected from a game Dec. 2, 2006 during his second NHL season for checking then-Buffalo forward Danny Briere into the boards from behind."

So if that is accurate, that would make the latest game misconduct his 3rd in his (going on) 4-year career.

I was unable to find an record for most game misconducts in a career, but I'll bet it is more than 3.

Posted by: rjma1 | December 3, 2009 9:43 AM | Report abuse

@Sonyask

GMGM just confirmed on Elliot in the Morning that Semin will be in the lineup tonight.

Posted by: JD09 | December 3, 2009 9:44 AM | Report abuse

@TotallyTacos - Re: Semin - His name's actually not transliterated correctly into English. It's spelled "Сёмин" in Russian - Note the "ë" as the second letter - and should be pronounced "Syomin". The man should really pull a Varlamov and make them fix it, but it's been "Semin" in English for so long that it would sound primadonnaish for him to do so now...

Posted by: irockthered | December 3, 2009 9:50 AM | Report abuse

Toews and Kane both resigned with CHI. Both identical contracts @ $6.3M over 5 years?

Can we, or should we resign Backs and Semin for the same money?

Personally, I think those two contracts are good for us.

Keith resigned for 13 years @ $5.5M.

Posted by: JSchon | December 3, 2009 9:51 AM | Report abuse

I don't consider this a 2 game suspension for Ovie, but rather a two game "time-out".

Posted by: Capsfannmiss | December 3, 2009 9:51 AM | Report abuse

@JSchon

I like your lineup come 12/9, but I would not be surprised of ShaMo is still out and Alzner is still up, unless the cap forbids this.

Posted by: CTCapsPhan | December 3, 2009 9:53 AM | Report abuse

I don't think the cap will allow it. Tominfl, what say you?

Posted by: JSchon | December 3, 2009 9:55 AM | Report abuse

I don't consider this a 2 game suspension for Ovie, but rather a two game "time-out".

Posted by: Capsfannmiss | December 3, 2009 9:51 AM | Report abuse

Now that made me laugh....

Posted by: hbcapsfan | December 3, 2009 9:55 AM | Report abuse

@Capsfannmiss - "A two game 'time-out'"? ROFL! That's great!

Posted by: irockthered | December 3, 2009 9:59 AM | Report abuse

JSchon: Kopitar signed his extension a year ago, just at the start of his third season, and got 6.8 for 7 Kane and Toews now 6.3 for 5.

NHL PT TOTAL AFTER FIRST TWO SEASONS
Toews 123
Kopitar 138
Kane 142
Backstrom 157

I think the Caps would be lucky to get Backie at 6.3. This certainly zeros in for Backstrom between 6.3 and 6.8. I have been saying for awhile that there's very little margin for disagreement with his contract.

Posted by: tominfl1 | December 3, 2009 10:04 AM | Report abuse

frankly, the OV soap opera is played out. can we talk about something else???

Posted by: doughless | December 3, 2009 10:06 AM | Report abuse

Lets do it...

Backstrom $6.5M over 6

Posted by: JSchon | December 3, 2009 10:10 AM | Report abuse

With cap decreasing a small amount and possibly decreasing again next year, it has driven down the salaries a little.

So looking at contracts signed 1-2 years ago when the cap was increasing at a rate of $3-4 million/year is a little deceiving which is why this may be the perfect time to sign Backstrom to a long term. Once the cap starts increasing again he will need a much larger contract.

$6.3 sounds about right for Backstrom and maybe you can get that a little smaller for a long term contract. However, maybe keeping relatively short kept the prices smaller because their contracts were only for 5 years, which I'm guessing the players wanted since it will give them unrestricted free agency when they are around 27.

Posted by: sgm3 | December 3, 2009 10:11 AM | Report abuse

@doughless

Pick a topic. I too am over the Ovi thing. I'm talking Toews/Kane/Keith contracts and how it effects Backstrom/Semin...

Posted by: JSchon | December 3, 2009 10:12 AM | Report abuse

If ShaMo is really bad, and it does not sound good with all the delays, they may need to put him on LTIR. Again, not sure if that frees up enough cap space. At one point though, you would think they would need to step back and make a decision about LTIR for him. The delays are adding up and he should not come back any sooner than he can physically.

Posted by: CTCapsPhan | December 3, 2009 10:12 AM | Report abuse

JSchon: They can keep Alzner I think (they are also keeping up Perreault) if Gordon and Laing are LTIR. Don't know the staus of that and it's really tight anyway. Remember Alzner only counts for now at 875 and if he gets bonuses you might have to pay the piper next year.

On Semin: Kane, Toews, Backie and Kopitar aren't comparables for him since they are all post-entry level contracts and he will be 26 next year. His comparables are more like Cammalleri at 6.0 and D Sedin at 6.1. I have Cammalleri and Semin as very similar assets.

Posted by: tominfl1 | December 3, 2009 10:16 AM | Report abuse

shamo on LTIR does allow us to keep alzner and save a few $ too. can make it retroactive. not sure if they can swing that if shamo is eligible to come back this weekend. he's missed 6 games so far and i think LTIR is 10 games min. i think he was injured in the rangers game just like knuble. it's possible i suppose.

Posted by: dcsportsfan1 | December 3, 2009 10:18 AM | Report abuse

When a guy like Orpik has hits like this on youtube, he should shut his mouth..

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WRMz6A6r5fs

Posted by: SA-Town | December 3, 2009 10:19 AM | Report abuse

This is the hockey world's chance to knock Ovi down...we excel as a media society at putting our elite athletes on pedestals and then knocking them off the first chance we get. I love his attitude, and he is correct in ignoring all the talking heads.

Posted by: lylewimbledon | December 3, 2009 10:20 AM | Report abuse

Putting ShaMo retroactive LTIR (he has already missed close to 10, no?) frees up space for Alzner.

JSchon; When I did analysis last week for Caps cap hit 2010-11 I had Backstrom 6.5, Semin 6.0 and Flash/Fehr combining for 4.0. You can't let those last two fall out of the equation, especially since Flash can do arbitration (like Semin) for one year then UFA. They need to get Flash and Semin locked up yesterday and Fehr soon before his price skyrockets.

Posted by: tominfl1 | December 3, 2009 10:20 AM | Report abuse

Melrose is the biggest hypocrite of them all...I won't even mention the king of the DB's-Cherry

Posted by: lylewimbledon | December 3, 2009 10:23 AM | Report abuse

I'm gonna have 5 hot dogs tonight.

Posted by: RockRed | December 3, 2009 10:24 AM | Report abuse

@Rockred

Way to halt all the action, now I'm hungry for less than adequate dogs.

Posted by: JSchon | December 3, 2009 10:39 AM | Report abuse

@tominfl

Fehr and Flash for $4M? Break that down for me.

Posted by: JSchon | December 3, 2009 10:43 AM | Report abuse

The league had better call it both ways in terms of so called dirty plays. If they are watching Ovechkin more closely, then they better watch all the "dirty plays" that he has to deal with night in and night out as well. I do not know how many times I have seen opposing D-men or Forwards use their sticks against Ovi's familiy jewels or cross-checking him from behind. Cindy and OPrick are whiners that do not want to get hurt but like to add salt to wounded souls, so they better watch out now that their true feelings are being printed. Bunch of wusses!

Posted by: JohnWWW | December 3, 2009 10:48 AM | Report abuse

I have to say that I am disappointed in how this has been handled by the Post writers. Watching the interview, Ovechkin did not seem angry or display any aggressive emotion. The Posts headlines have fueled the comments on all of the hockey sites and most of these people will only read the statements and not look at the interview. I think you have let Ovechkin down after the open and postive way he has dealt with the press over the years. He has made mistakes, sure, but the writers have compounded them.

Posted by: Richmondcapsfan | December 3, 2009 10:53 AM | Report abuse

JSchon: At time I did figures, Flash was hot and I had him coming in at 25-30 goals this year and settling just below Olesz, who is $3.125M, and getting between 2.5 and 3.0 per year. Now Flash is cold. Still his numbers put him close to Olesz bucks.

Fehr is a only 24 next July 1st and I thought he could be had two years $2.5M. Don't think I put much thought into that, but I then pegged them $4M as a set.

On Backie, only potential disagreement could be the club saying his stats are inflated due to Ovi. Certainly had you swapped Kopitar to Caps and Backie to LA, Kopitar would have better numbers and Backie less. I don't know if such "what if" stats exist. That's why though I think Backie is worth less than 6.8, and also nearly impossible for club to say he's worth less than 6.3. 6.5 is then a very good figure for estimating purposes.

Posted by: tominfl1 | December 3, 2009 11:00 AM | Report abuse

Ovie's first game back on home ice - (Carolina on the 11th I think) we should raise the noise level to playoff decibels each time Ovie is on ice. Let him know we support and respect him, and care less as he does with what the press and opposition are saying. That being said, I can't wait for the day to end so we can see our boys handle Florida! Go Caps!

Posted by: gonchpup | December 3, 2009 11:02 AM | Report abuse

I feel that the Junior Seau quote above was not enough justice for what he said about Ovie.

"Ovechkin?

Yeah, Alex. Watching him, you'd think that he would be a prima donna. That guy is a jokester. He lightens it up. The reason why the Capitals are doing so well is basically because the guy puts it in perspective. He's not bigger than anybody on that team, and he cares for the players in that locker room, which I got to see firsthand. "

Posted by: richmondphil | December 3, 2009 11:08 AM | Report abuse

And why are being censored now?

When there is smoke, there is fire.

Posted by: richmondphil | December 3, 2009 11:14 AM | Report abuse

Certainly had you swapped Kopitar to Caps and Backie to LA, Kopitar would have better numbers and Backie less. I don't know if such "what if" stats exist. That's why though I think Backie is worth less than 6.8, and also nearly impossible for club to say he's worth less than 6.3. 6.5 is then a very good figure for estimating purposes.

__________________________

I don't see where that argument gets made from. Kopitar only broke out until this year, I wouldn't say he's much better than Backstrom.

As far as Olesz and Flash, if Flash does indeed net 25-30, he should make a lot more than Olesz. The signing conditions for a middle pack team and a cup team are different though, of course.

Posted by: richmondphil | December 3, 2009 11:17 AM | Report abuse

irockthered - Thanks. I had heard his last name was the result of an unfortunate translation. The whole Russian -> English thing I am totally clueless about, though. I couldn't figure out for the longest time why everyone called him Sasha in the first place . . .

Posted by: TotallyTacos | December 3, 2009 11:17 AM | Report abuse

@tom

Although I agree with your numbers for the most part, it's too based on stats and I don't think you are giving enough credit to the intangibles. A goal-scorer is also more valued than a assist-man.

Backstrom should not make as much as Kopitar, Toews, or Kane. They are the face of their team, and they all score more goals than Backstrom. Backstrom should hover around 6.

Posted by: richmondphil | December 3, 2009 11:23 AM | Report abuse

orpick and crosby- why don't they just focus on their team and stop worrying about us!!!

Posted by: rachel216

@rachel216:

The reason the Penquins, Crosby in particular, continue to talk about Ovie and the Caps is simply because they are scared to death of the Capitals. They saw first hand last year in the playoffs that we are no joke and we'll beat, bang, score and destroy a team at a moments notice (with the exception of game 7). The more Crosby and his girlfriends continue to talk about the Caps, the more fear it shows the Penqueens have for us. They know that in order to defend their Cup title this season they will have to get through the Caps and they also know that doing so will be a tougher job each and every year as our team continues to develop, mature and beat up on teams within the Eastern Conference and throughout the league.

As for my (worthless) opinion on Ovie's suspension, I believe that he was suspended for the simple fact of having 2 misconducts in 3 games. I don't think the league targeted his knee-to-knee hit in particular. If anything they probably viewed his hit on Kaletta as more out of line then the Gleason hit. However, I believe that Ovie would have received a longer suspension (4-5 games) if Gleason did not return to the ice 2 shifts after the hit. If that would have happened then the NHL would have bundled the Kaletta hit, the Gleason hit (and injury if sustained) along with the 2 misconducts in 3 games and given him a harsher penalty then 2 games regardless if he was a first time offender or not.

Posted by: mlewis31 | December 3, 2009 11:28 AM | Report abuse

You guys are crazy...Backstrom is better than all those players.

Posted by: lylewimbledon | December 3, 2009 11:31 AM | Report abuse

You guys are crazy...Backstrom is better than all those players.

Posted by: lylewimbledon | December 3, 2009 11:31 AM |

All three of them listed are far better 1 on1 players. Backstrom is a great player, it's why I defended him against the claim that Kopitar was better. But Backstrom is far, far, far, far from being a dominant player on the ice.

Also, Toews is bar-none the best player out of the 4. Then I'd probably go Backsie, Kopitar, then Kane.

Posted by: richmondphil | December 3, 2009 11:40 AM | Report abuse

@TotallyTacos - The nickname "Sasha" is standard for "Alexander." I'm not sure how it works that way, but it is. :-)

Posted by: irockthered | December 3, 2009 11:50 AM | Report abuse

So do we get Sasha back tonight?

http://www.nowgoal.com/22.shtml

Posted by: bgfgf402 | December 5, 2009 9:54 PM | Report abuse

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