Ovechkin: 'I Think Everybody Miss Hockey Right Now'
What was the best part of your offseason?
Everything. Just good rest.
Was it a good party in Moscow?
How long were you back?
Three months. Every offseason.
Are you glad to be back?
It's always nice to come back. I think everybody miss hockey right now and me too. I'm excited and again can't wait until we start playing.
How were the appearances in New York to start the week?
It was pretty hard days, three days. I stopped doing all interviews or meetings at 6 or 7 p.m.. I was kind of busy but it's okay. It's done.
Are there greater expectations this year?
Every time when the season starts you never know what's going to happen but everybody excited, everybody want to play. So I hope it's going to be better.
Are the Capitals closer to being a Stanley Cup team?
It's time for us. The organization is doing well. Guys understand if we make the playoffs it's not yet, we have to move forward and keep going.
Where do you see the team now?
On top. On top of everybody. Right now Pittsburgh is Stanley Cup champions they have great team. I don't think we're losing something we have same guys maybe better, it's our team. It doesn't matter who win last year it matter who win next year.
Are you surprised after Semyon Varlamov's performance that Bruce Boudreau said Jose Theodore would be the No. 1 goaltender?
No, Jose I think he's a more experienced guy. Varly, he's young and he has a great future and you can see how he play in the playoffs. You never know what's going to happen during the season and who's going to be the guy.
What did winning a second Hart Trophy mean to you?
It says a lot. It's good when you win something, but I win two times MVP. It's not me, it's my players, this organization they give me an opportunity to win it. I'm happy I'm here. I hope it's not last one.
Is this year the best chance for this team to win the Stanley Cup, with this group of players?
I hope all guys going to stay here. Great players, great guys in the locker room and I hope they're going to stay here. About winning. Every time I want to win, doesn't matter what team, who's going to play. We're going to win.
Will it be more special if this group of players (the young guns) can stay together?
We're talking about next year if somebody going to leave I don't think somebody going to leave. Everybody wants to stay here. There's a great atmosphere here that's coming here, the fans the crazy fans, and the atmosphere here is unbelievable. I hope it's going to be great for our team if everybody is going to stay.
Are you looking forward to the Vancouver Olympics?
It's still four or five months. I'm looking forward to this tournament. I hope I'm going to represent my country over there. It's going to be a great time for everybody. The best players are going to play over there for different countries and everybody wants to play there, so me too.
You had a slow start to the 2008 season, have you thought about how to get a better start this year?
Last year I didn't score and I didn't make a point in 10 or 12 games. Of course if you look end of season I was three points behind Malkin so of course if I make some points maybe I win Art Ross. But it's ok. It happens. I'm glad I play well last year I don't want to stop I want to be best. This year I want to be better. Next year how many years I can I want to be better
Your shoulders look bigger...
(Laughing) Yes, I make some injections.
What do you weigh now, 228-230? In that range?
No. (Laughing) I can't tell you.
What have you learned about pacing yourself to endure the season?
All guys here, including guys who play first year, we have experience. We know how to play. It doesn't matter what happen, it doesn't matter what situation, it's good when you have so much experience, especially when you play in playoffs. Three times we have series and we play seven games and two times we lost, one time we win, that's experience that you have to learn.
What does the team need to improve upon to go farther in the playoffs?
Everybody have to do some better stuff because we didn't win. The start of the year it's going to be a good year for all of us, but everybody wants to do some better stuff this year than for last year. I want to win. We're here to win.
How was the Russian Olympic training camp?
Two days we spent together, little bit practicing. Not hard practicing, just feel for each other what's going on in the locker room. I was [on a line with] with Semin and Fedorov.
Are you going to miss Fedorov?
I think everybody going to miss him, but that's the life.
September 12, 2009; 1:40 PM ET
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