Network News

X My Profile
View More Activity
On Twitter: kcarrera and PostSports  |  Facebook  |  E-mail alerts: Sports and Redskins  |  RSS

Ovechkin Named Ambassador for Sochi Games

From the Associated Press:

NHL MVP Alex Ovechkin is offering his help to organizers of the first Winter Olympics in his native Russia.

The Washington Capitals star, who has earned the Hart Trophy as league MVP the past two seasons, will be an "official ambassador" for the 2014 Sochi Games, organizers said Monday.

Ovechkin led the NHL in goals this past season with 56, and became the first repeat MVP since Buffalo's Dominik Hasek in 1997-98. Ovechkin played for Russia at the 2006 Turin Olympics and is expected to lead the team at next year's Winter Games in Vancouver.

The announcement of his role with Sochi coincided with celebrations marking the two-year anniversary since the Black Sea resort was awarded the Games.

Ovi-everything blog Alex Ovetjkin has more details and some photos.

By Lindsay Applebaum  |  July 6, 2009; 2:52 PM ET
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Jurcina Files for Arbitration
Next: Obama on Ovechkin: 'He's Outstanding'



Here is picture of Ovechkin with "official ambassador" diploma:

Posted by: CodePoetry | July 6, 2009 2:56 PM | Report abuse

Here is RFA compensation from 2007. Probably higher for 2009, but these numbers should be in the ballpark:

$773,442 or below None
Over $773,442 to $1,171,882 Third-round choice
Over $1,171,882 to $2,343,765 Second-round choice
Over $2,343,765 to $3,515,647 First-round and third-round choice
Over $3,515,647 to $4,687,530 First-round, second-round and third-round choice
Over $4,687,530 to $5,859,412 Two first-round choices, one second- and one
third-round choice.
Over $5,859,412 Four first-round choices

What are people here expecting Morrisonn to get in terms of an offer? $2.0M? That would fetch you a #2 pick. Hopefully someone offers in the $2.5M range where you'd get a first and a third. Wishful thinking though.

Posted by: tominfl1 | July 6, 2009 3:09 PM | Report abuse

@ CodePoetry Hey, very cool! Thanks.

Posted by: Lindsay Applebaum | July 6, 2009 3:19 PM | Report abuse

YAY for OVie!!

please comment as this post has responses to readers' questions from adam proteau, a senior writer for the hockey news. he always gets trashed by readers for his "ask adam segment on the hockey news website, so trash him if you feel offended!

Posted by: alexanderperlmutter | July 6, 2009 3:19 PM | Report abuse

i am not the biggest ShaMo advocate. He strikes me as a guy that doesn't show up on a consistent basis and doesn't bring much in terms of physicality. that said, he really surprised me towards the end of the season and during the playoffs. frankly, i think he played the best hockey i have ever seen him play during that stretch. i guess what i am getting at is that i can see another team with problems on the blueline being willing to offer him $2 mil a year. at this point i think $2.5 mil is a real stretch. however, if he can consistently bring the style of play he exhibited late in the season, who knows.

the Caps have several d-men that are interchangable with ShaMo. I believe we need one serious upgrade on the blueline. in fact, i think we need that more than another center. add the d-man and the goalie issue is not as important. with the addition of Knuble we need GMGM to find a strong d-man.

Posted by: doughless | July 6, 2009 3:20 PM | Report abuse

Congrats for Ovi

As far as Mo goes, I see Sloan as a much cheaper version of Mo. Of course There really isn't that much room for Sloan to come up but that depends on what happens with Juice and Sarge.

Posted by: pkendrick | July 6, 2009 3:31 PM | Report abuse

Didn't Bettman say they weren't going to allow players to compete after the 2010 Olympic games, due to insurance and scheduling, or something like that? Hate to think this will get him in any trouble with NHL management (though I'm sure the NHLPA will applaud it).

Posted by: bagace | July 6, 2009 3:45 PM | Report abuse

bagace, the NHL has not committed to anything beyond the 2010 Games. Bettman did say that a lot of owners aren't in favor for the Olympics, mostly because they think lose money while the league shuts down. The NHLPA said that their members are for it so it's possible this is just a Bettman smokescreen in labor negiotiations.

Posted by: koalatek | July 6, 2009 4:01 PM | Report abuse

Well, according to TSN, Kovalev signed a 2 year contract with Sens.

Posted by: The_Stanley_Caps | July 6, 2009 4:06 PM | Report abuse

and the Leafs signed Beauchemin, which to me would signal that a Kaberle trade will definitely be happening over the summer.

Posted by: ThePat | July 6, 2009 4:09 PM | Report abuse

@ Tarik or anyone that might know already,

Is Knuble going to be wearing #22?

Posted by: ThePat | July 6, 2009 4:19 PM | Report abuse

Hockeybuzz kept saying Kovalev was talking to us. 5 mil a year for 2 years?

I cant see us being anywhere near that. I would of thought 1 year 2 mil, and him taking that discount to try and win the cup. What a bogus rumor.

Posted by: SA-Town | July 6, 2009 4:29 PM | Report abuse

Hopefully the NHL re-ups for the Sochi games, because I would hate for this to become a sore point for our Russians. You have to assume the NHL will agree to send players over there, if for no other reason than to not make the KHL even the slightest bit more attractive than it is currently.

and kudos to Linsday for linking to Alex Ovetjkin

Posted by: SombreroGuy | July 6, 2009 5:13 PM | Report abuse

related to tominfl's post,

For 2008-09, the compensation due for signing a RFA to an Offer Sheet is:

Amount Compensation Due

$863,156 or less: None

$863,156 - $1,307,812: 3rd round pick

$1,307,812 - $2,615,625: 2nd round pick

$2,615,623 - $3,923,437: 1st and 3rd round pick

$3,923,437 - $5,231,249: 1st, 2nd, and 3rd round pick

$5,231,249 - $6,539,062: Two 1st's, one 2nd, one 3rd round pick

$6,539,062 or more: Four 1st round picks

since the salary cap only went up slightly, you can assume these figures are more or less accurate within a couple percentage points.

Posted by: SombreroGuy | July 6, 2009 5:15 PM | Report abuse

@SombreroGuy , That was my concern too. Hate to upset Ovi, Semin, Varly, and any more we may pick up. Plus, saying OK to Canada's games in 2010 and No to Russia's 4 years later would probably seem suspect to most of the non-North American players.

Posted by: bagace | July 6, 2009 5:52 PM | Report abuse

I was all against the professionals playing in the Olympics be it Hockey, Basketball, or Baseball for two reasons the second of which was - what would happen when the novelty wore off? If the Olympics are in USA or Canada everyone wants the NHL players involved, but as soon as its on the other side of the world the only people that want to be in are those who host it. This is where the KHL Russian League will get stronger - attracting disenchanted Russian players who get angry at the NHL not supporting them when they supported the NHL all along - the NHLPA better fight for these Russian stars to be involved in Sochi in 2014.

Posted by: yesisaiditfirst | July 6, 2009 6:04 PM | Report abuse

Hockeybuzz kept saying Kovalev was talking to us. 5 mil a year for 2 years?

I cant see us being anywhere near that. I would of thought 1 year 2 mil, and him taking that discount to try and win the cup. What a bogus rumor.

Posted by: SA-Town | July 6, 2009 4:29 PM

Hockeybuzz had a bogus rumor????? GTFO!!! Gee, we had no cap room and no need for another skilled forward and we didn't get him. Who'da thunk it?
If I'm a rival GM I wouldn't sign ShaMo and give up a 2nd round pick since I could get him for nothing next summer. If I'm McPhee I'd try to get a 3rd rounder now for him. I think that's the best I could get for him

Posted by: tempusfugitrgv | July 6, 2009 7:00 PM | Report abuse

NHLPA files grievance for Barker and Versteeg in Chicago. Chicago is going to be hard pressed to keep either of these players now that Kane and Toews are up next season as well. Tallon deserves to be fired for this oversight!

Posted by: freakinandpeakin | July 6, 2009 7:48 PM | Report abuse

If the NHL doesn't want its players to play in Sochi, it will really harm relations between the KHL and the NHL and will hurt the motivation for Russian players to play in the NHL.

It's more than a bit hypocritical for the NHL to be supportive of playing in Vancouver but not supportive of playing in Sochi. Maybe it's not the best thing to have pros in the Olympics but to discontinue it for Sochi seems too harmful to international relations at this time.

Some say sports shouldn't get mixed up with politics but too many times they get too intertwined.

Posted by: CapsFan75 | July 6, 2009 8:29 PM | Report abuse

CHI just resigned Barker.

Posted by: ralCapsFan | July 6, 2009 8:33 PM | Report abuse

I am looking at the compensation figures posted by Sombrero Guy. I wouldn't be surprised some team needing D offers Morrisonn two years at just below the break point between a 2nd rounder and a 1st and a 3rd. That would buy out one of his UFA years. The guy isn't a bad player, he just isn't the right player at the right price given who we already have under contract. He plays hurt, too, and doesn't usually take dumb penalties. Do we know what the Caps offered as a qualifier? I forget, is it 10% over last year? That would be $2.2M. He might well just accept that and then go for UFA next year, that would be his best bet. At that price, a team needing D might give up a #2 to then trade for him.

One of the best moves to grow the organization is stock up on second rounders like that, feed the new (cheaper) players into the team and trade away some of the almost-UFA vets for more 2nd rounders. You can't do it to everyone or else you get morale problems. But you can certainly move one older guy a year to make room for younger players, thereby avoiding a different kind of morale problem.

When the Orioles were good (some might remember), they would trade the vets to make room for the young players.

Posted by: tominfl1 | July 6, 2009 8:55 PM | Report abuse

On hockey rumor sites...rumors are exactly that: rumors. They can originate from anywhere, including one's own mind's eye. Yeah, Eklund may try to create his own news when he reports rumors that noone else does. That being said, no legit news site is going to risk their integrity posting 'possibles' and 'what ifs'. So, whether you take (or any other rumor site) seriously or not, you have to admit that the floated possibility of Kovalev coming to DC, or Atlanta, or wherever, certainly worked in upping his market value. If, indeed, there were any discussions between the Caps/Kovalev's camp, it was surely for far less money, but you can be sure Kovalev's agent used the prospect of Kovalev becoming a Cap as a bargaining chip with Bryan Murray. As a possible consequence of that, Murray ended up overpaying to bring Kovalev in (although he was probably more willing to make it happen anyway due to the Heatley fiasco).

Just because a particular deal doesn't go down doesn't mean that phone calls/e-mails/text messages discussing that deal weren't exchanged. The rumor may be totally legit. Agents undoubtedly use the power of the press to plant rumors of possible deals in order to improve their clients' standing. After all, agents get paid by receiving a % of whatever the player signs for, so they have a vested interest in driving the contract totals upwards by creating real, or perceived, demand for the player's services.

All that being said, I'm glad McPhee didn't sign a guy who's had exactly three 30+ goal seasons in a 19 year NHL career. Let him be Ottawa's headache.

Posted by: MetalCapsFan | July 6, 2009 8:56 PM | Report abuse

FYI...NHL Network has started replaying Caps - NYR first round at 7PM. Game one is wrapping up now. 2 tomorrow.

Man...seeing Sarge blow his tire again...

Posted by: ralCapsFan | July 6, 2009 8:56 PM | Report abuse

Ovie pretty much just solidified his place in the 2014 games. Even if the NHL opts not to allpw [layers to go, Ovechkin has to because he is the ambassador for the games. good move!

Posted by: oo7 | July 6, 2009 9:26 PM | Report abuse

LOL how's that a good move for the Caps??

Posted by: joek443 | July 6, 2009 9:29 PM | Report abuse

if some russian players want to play in the olympics more than playing in the NHL, let them go back and play but don't pay them for the two or three weeks they will be absent.

this whole olympic thing for the NHL was a big mistake to begin with. it's okay for the NBA players to participate in the summer olympics because it's during their offseason. they would be wise to just stop it after the 2010 games.

Posted by: joek443 | July 6, 2009 9:34 PM | Report abuse

List of players invited to Team Russia's Olympic training camp in August:

Posted by: tess2201 | July 6, 2009 9:51 PM | Report abuse

Are there any quality free agents left? I'm trying to be positive about GMGM's lack of movement in getting a 2nd line center or a big defenseman, I'm starting to look at a lot of the other teams and getting nervous....

Posted by: DevilsCapsGal | July 6, 2009 10:01 PM | Report abuse

I think the caps are about a million under the salary cap so there's really nothing they can do right now as far as free agency unless they can find a team that wants Nylander and/or Theodore.

Posted by: joek443 | July 6, 2009 10:06 PM | Report abuse

joek443, I totally disagree regarding the olympics. Its the only event in the world that every athelete, pro or not, wants to take part in. I'm all for NHL players joining in and representing their countries. I'd rather the NHL season get shorter than see the players abandoning olympic involvement. Get rid of the preseason that year. There are 82 games, more than enough to sort things out.

Posted by: oo7 | July 6, 2009 10:21 PM | Report abuse

@DevilsCapsGal: I wouldn't worry too much about it. I think GMGM wants to see if someone in the existing lineup will step up and be the guy, which makes sense since we're only about $1 million under the cap right now. We've got enough to get us to the playoffs; if we need more and nothing comes out of the woodwork, we move at the deadline with the extra money we squirreled away by not spending like a sailor on shore leave.

I suspect that GMGM will stand pat unless a really good trade comes along.

Posted by: kittypawz | July 6, 2009 10:35 PM | Report abuse

And if it helps, Detroit is doing the same thing.

Posted by: kittypawz | July 6, 2009 10:37 PM | Report abuse


that's fine that you wanna see them in the olympics but there's absolutely no benefit to the NHL. They were hoping that the more people got to see them in the olympics, the better it would for the NHL but is there anyone out there who actually thinks that it has worked out that way for the NHL?

I happen to believe that none of these stick and ball sports belong in the olympics. olympic soccer sucks and so do lot of others. If hockey wants to create more muzz around the world, they should create a world cup style tournament every 4 years and put more effort into it than they did before.

Posted by: joek443 | July 6, 2009 10:37 PM | Report abuse

I think a lot of heart went out of the Olympics when pros of major sports were allowed to compete. It was best as a showcase of top amateur talent and less internationally publicized sports. The "Dream Team" thoroughly annoyed me and punctuated the turning point.

As for Ovi, good for him, I guess. I hope he shows other athletes how to show enjoyment for what they do.

Posted by: pstenigma | July 6, 2009 11:27 PM | Report abuse

I wouldn't worry too much about GMGM's "lack of action". I think everyone was expecting (or probably should have been) practically zero impact signings given our cap situation and the prospect of having to re-sign Backstrom and Semin after this year. Getting Knuble for the price and length of contract we did was a savvy move that made sense. Looking at the deals the "big" D men and guys who could fit the 2nd line center spot got, I'd say he did what he could and if we need further tweaks he'll make them at the deadline (as many others keep saying on here).

I wouldn't worry too much about finding someone to replace Federov too. Feds put up 33 points in 52 games last season, someone like Laich put up 53 points in 82. That's actually a slightly better points per game for Laich. I'll grant that Feds struggled through some injury issues, but that's a wash as I'd rather have a guy who plays all 82 games. Feds may have had a unique leadership aura we can't replace, especially with the young Russian players. But at this point Ovie and Semin have a few years under their belts and can help out a guy like Varlamov on their own. Laich has been talked about as a future captain someday, and the addition of Knuble to the locker room should help fill any voids in leadership we might have.

I mean we don't have Mike Richards so we have to make do.

All in all, we will be fine. The next set of prospects who are supposed to crack the lineup and make an impact are both on defense, so the answer for our worries might already be in house.

Posted by: Davethecapsfan | July 6, 2009 11:36 PM | Report abuse

@Dave and kitty: I know you're right, and the Devils are doing the same thing (although they lost a bunch of UFAs); watching my two favorite teams not do much just makes for a boring July....and the hockey season seems sooo far away!

Posted by: DevilsCapsGal | July 7, 2009 12:28 AM | Report abuse

I happen to believe that none of these stick and ball sports belong in the olympics. olympic soccer sucks and so do lot of others. If hockey wants to create more muzz around the world, they should create a world cup style tournament every 4 years and put more effort into it than they did before.

Posted by: joek443 | July 6, 2009 10:37 PM

I can't disagree that there are sports that could be removed. My vote is that Hockey isn't one of them. I like the world cup format as well; as of now, the Olympics stand in for that. I don;t think the Olympics give the NHL any advantage, either. I just like the winter olympics. If they changed the rules to remove pros from the olympics, ok, I just don;t think the NHL should be the ones to make that decision.

Posted by: oo7 | July 7, 2009 12:49 AM | Report abuse

More people watch the Olympics than the NHL. I simply can't believe the league can't take advantage of what is essentially free advertising. The NHL should be trying to expand its footprint into Europe. Having Ovechkin as "face of the league" has to be an advantage there. I'm not in marketing, but I just don't see how the NHL can't get some kind of carryover effect from a great international tournament. I believe the NHL should embrace the Olympics rather than keep it at arm's length. Like I said, it's free advertising.

Here's my brand-new idea: Since Ovechkin has been named ambassador for Russia, the league should make Ted Leonsis the liaison between the NHL and the IOC for hockey.

Posted by: tominfl1 | July 7, 2009 6:43 AM | Report abuse

@devilscapsgirl, Cam Barker MAY become a free agent if this qualifying offer fiasco in Chi grows legs. He was a d-man that the Caps were allegedly involved in talks with Chi on and it was based on a trade with Nyls. Fell thru because Chicago couldn't unload Khabibulin. Though now with Hossa on the payroll not sure if Chi can afford Nyls.

Posted by: ds_kelly | July 7, 2009 9:10 AM | Report abuse

Is it just me or is anyone else offended that the President declined Ted's invitation to join him for a Capitals game after taking up residence in DC (and only after Mr. President attended a Wizards/ Bulls game at Verizon), but here he is today attempting to gain political favor by telling an audience in Russia how pleased he is to share DC with our Mr. Ovechkin. I say we try to avoid making hockey (and Ovie) part of the DC political game. Just my 2 cents worth.

Posted by: Caps16Fan | July 7, 2009 1:19 PM | Report abuse

@ Tarik or anyone that might know already,

Is Knuble going to be wearing #22?

Posted by: ThePat | July 6, 2009 4:19 PM | Report abuse

It's not official yet (I don't think) but he's worn it his whole career and none of our guys has it, so if you wanna go ahead and get the #22 sweater, I don't think you'll be embarrassed soon thereafter.

Posted by: wis193 | July 7, 2009 10:19 PM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

RSS Feed
Subscribe to The Post

© 2010 The Washington Post Company