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Ovechkin Reaction

Here's what Alex Ovechkin had to say about his goal celebration tonight: "Me, Jose Theodore, [Nicklas] Backstrom and [Mike Green] said if I score goal, Jose tell me just put the stick on the ice and try act like it's so hot. Backie stopped and Greenie stopped, so I have to do it myself."

When I asked him if he expected to be ripped by Don Cherry, he shot back with a big smile: "Oh yeah, he's going to be [ticked] off for sure. I love it. I can't wait 'til he says something about me. Old coaches, old system, you know?"

Not everyone was laughing, though. Caps Coach Bruce Boudreau said he was caught off guard by the celebration and plans to talk to his star about it. Bolts Coach Rick Tocchet was upset, telling reporters: "I grew up in the old days in the Spectrum where in the first period, after that happened, it might have been a three-hour first period. It's not something I like. It's hard for me to see that in our building."

I'll have more in an hour or so. Got a story to write for the paper. So check back.

Update: Ovechkin's goal made it to YouTube. Take another look, then vote:

By Tarik El-Bashir  |  March 19, 2009; 10:43 PM ET
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Next: Update on Green


Nothing on Green?!

Posted by: RtR52 | March 19, 2009 10:50 PM | Report abuse

If you lift the Cup or at least get there, celebrate all you want

Scoring a goal against Tampa...what's the use of celebrating

Posted by: gtydings | March 19, 2009 10:52 PM | Report abuse

I bet Tocchet's peeved.

Oh, gosh, sorry about that...

Posted by: j1234561 | March 19, 2009 10:52 PM | Report abuse

i was surprised by the celebration. Generally, all of Ovie's celebrations are genuine and natural -- and that wasn't. I think Ovie should stick to his own ideas rather than Jose's :-).

Posted by: DrinkingPartner | March 19, 2009 10:56 PM | Report abuse

When you are the best player in the NHL, you can do what you want.

Posted by: SA-Town | March 19, 2009 10:56 PM | Report abuse

If somebody doesn't like Ovechkin's celebration, I suggest that they score 50 NHL goals three times and celebrate any way that they feel is appropriate.

Posted by: uncatim | March 19, 2009 10:56 PM | Report abuse

I'm starting to get pissed off by all these celebrations critics. HANDS OFF OVIE, you prudes. I don't like NFL showboating etc, but Ovie does nothing like that.

Posted by: yrb1 | March 19, 2009 10:57 PM | Report abuse

I think too much fuss is being made about it. It was kinda silly but not the big thing that some people are making of it.

I care much, much more about Green.

Posted by: kittypawz | March 19, 2009 10:59 PM | Report abuse

Is Ovechkin celebrating a team accomplishment?

Posted by: gtydings | March 19, 2009 10:59 PM | Report abuse

I'll say it again: Ovechkin is a clown. I like him the way he is. He's spontaneous, and he's a goofball. And if folks don't like it, they can sit on a tack! :-)

Posted by: irockthered | March 19, 2009 11:00 PM | Report abuse

But yeah - some update on Green's shoulder would be very VERY good. That put a big black streak on the game for me... I hope he's OK!!!

Posted by: irockthered | March 19, 2009 11:01 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: PVanderVossen | March 19, 2009 11:05 PM | Report abuse

"I don't like NFL showboating etc, but Ovie does nothing like that.

Posted by: yrb1 | March 19, 2009 10:57 PM"

Well, tonight he kind of did. What I didn't like was that it WASN'T spontaneous.

But whatever. I can't stay mad at him (not that I was even really mad). He's only the best thing to ever happen to the Caps, so he's got a hefty amount of leeway. Heh!

Posted by: Goat_74 | March 19, 2009 11:08 PM | Report abuse

There's a different tone to the celebrations of the NFL players like TO who are all about the self-promoting. When you hear him talk about it it's pretty obvious he isn't even taking himself seriously...he's having fun. Sure old time guys might not like it, but it is what it is. It was for the 50 goals and it wasn't even his own idea. I love the fact he is basically saying to Grapes "Yeah, I'm just going to keep being me". Ovie haters will put all the spin on it they want but he's not taunting the other team, and I somehow doubt you'll see it ever again save as his own crazy way of having fun with his teammates to celebrate #50.

Same guy who yelled louder for both of Green's goals (which both gave us the lead just like his did) than his own, and who made a point to give Bradley a facewash after the game in acknowledgment of his goal as well.

NHL guys might publicly frown on it, but behind closed doors they'll find some way to gleefully try to get more exposure for the league.

I really hope Green is ok.

Posted by: Davethecapsfan | March 19, 2009 11:09 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: tess2201 | March 19, 2009 11:09 PM | Report abuse

haha, i love ovie.

"old coaches, old system. you know?"

i think it was an awesome celebration, but maybe he should have saved it for a home game

Posted by: capsfan8 | March 19, 2009 11:09 PM | Report abuse

austinsteve: Sorry, I didn't see your last post about 3 X 50 goals.

Posted by: uncatim | March 19, 2009 11:10 PM | Report abuse

Why would you use that YouTube clip? Horrible.

You should have used this one:

Posted by: no_private_info | March 19, 2009 11:19 PM | Report abuse

"I don't like NFL showboating etc, but Ovie does nothing like that.

Posted by: yrb1 | March 19, 2009 10:57 PM"

Well, tonight he kind of did. What I didn't like was that it WASN'T spontaneous.

Posted by: Goat_74 | March 19, 2009 11:08 PM

No, I think it's very different because he does not take himself too serious, he's just having fun.

According to one definition:
1. To have a visibly exaggerated idea of ones own skills, talents, or abilities.
2. To exhibit a grotesque amount of undue and unfounded pride for a skill or ability

Ovie is not like that, I think that's pretty obvious. Plus, it's was his 50th goal, that happens just once a year, for him, that is, zero times a year for most other players :)

Posted by: yrb1 | March 19, 2009 11:19 PM | Report abuse

seems like the high scorers have had a bit of a down year. It wouldn't be a big stretch to think he's the only guy to crack 50 this year. I still think he has an outside chance for 60 but I figure he'll end up in the 54-58 range.

Posted by: Davethecapsfan | March 19, 2009 11:22 PM | Report abuse

I'm more worried about Green than I am about Ovechkin clowning around... any updates? I call B.S. on what the Times is reporting he said ("knocked the wind out of him"....). I expect we'll find out on Saturday, but I hope this isn't as bad as it looked.

Posted by: irockthered | March 19, 2009 11:23 PM | Report abuse

much better link, w/ HQ...

Posted by: sargeantmofo | March 19, 2009 11:26 PM | Report abuse

looked to me (and I'm not a doctor) that Green may have subluxed his shoulder, or maybe has his elbow pulled apart slightly. In either case, rather unpleasant! Hopefully, nothing serious and he'll be back terrorizing other teams quickly.

Posted by: RedBirdie | March 19, 2009 11:26 PM | Report abuse

irockthered: Are you implying that players & staff of a professional sports team would be less than forthcoming about an injury!? I am shocked & outraged!!

Seriously, I sure hope green is OK.

Posted by: uncatim | March 19, 2009 11:27 PM | Report abuse

Well, if BB has issues with Ovie's celebration then it becomes an issue, like it or not.

Hope it blows over and we get back to the task at hand.

Posted by: BernieWolfeFan | March 19, 2009 11:28 PM | Report abuse

The Ovechkin thing is just different. Players in every major sport celebrate differently today than they did in the past. He's young and part of a new generation. Malkin has had some over the top celebrations, too.

Green's left arm/shoulder is my only concern right now.

Posted by: tmac2yao | March 19, 2009 11:30 PM | Report abuse

who's not that big of a deal at all...he wanted to do something different for his was quite funny if you ask me...the only problem i see is that we get slizzed too often, like the 2 goals being robbed from us, and then the other team scoring just like happens too often!
Also why the f*** did nobody take off stamkos head????
What he did was dirty and he didn't pay his price.. i hope in the next game, erskine or someone of the sort steps up and feeds him some of his own medecine..that stupid infected aids virus.
there is not excuse for the excessive hitting by malone and some of the other dirty tampa players...especially after the score was me it looked like intent to injure...and i hope tampa doesn't make my dirty list along with philly and pittsgaides...anyways our team looks hot right now! We're gonna do great in the playoffs!

Posted by: masterx09 | March 19, 2009 11:30 PM | Report abuse

Ovie brings pure joy to his game and he infects everyone around him with his showmanship...with all of the troubles we all live with lets just enjoy the moment.

Posted by: ken_nickell | March 19, 2009 11:30 PM | Report abuse

They were doing the same sh!t when they were dancing on our grave 4 years ago. Now the boat has turned & they whine?

Men or mouse these NHL-ers.

Posted by: Rocc00 | March 19, 2009 11:31 PM | Report abuse

Just to be clear, I don't want him to stop celebrating, or even remotely tone down his enthusiasm.

Fist-pumping, glass-jumping, dog-piling, swimming on the ice, all of that other great spontaneous goodness is what makes it impossible NOT to love this guy.

Just save the over-choreographed foolishness for all-star weekend. That's all I'm saying.

Posted by: Goat_74 | March 19, 2009 11:36 PM | Report abuse

GREEN: argh when the game is in hand, no need to have the best players on the ice this close to the playoffs. it's tampaand the game is all but over. I hope that's lesson learned though I seem to recall something similair last year.

OVIE: Save it fir your own building. I'm sorts with Tocchet on this. In the good old days, that got everyone on your team beat up. Respect for your opponents is more important than silly theatrics. Frankly, I like the idea of beat downs, and it's one of the reasons I've always liked hockey, and because of that I have to note when it's cause. I love him, but Ovie is now walking a line. Don't make Don Cherry right, please.

Posted by: oo7 | March 19, 2009 11:36 PM | Report abuse

I am very upset about the goal celebration. That Ovechkin would do something that would upset such a valued former member of the Caps family, like Rick Tocchet, is inexcusable.

Anyone else remember Rick's half-hearted (half-assed?) stay in DC? I am still mad at that prick. Glad Ovie had some fun against his worthless team in his half-empty rink.

Go Ovechkin!

Posted by: crooks_c | March 19, 2009 11:39 PM | Report abuse

I'm glad BB is going to have a talk with him. I love the spontaneity and the exhilaration that Ovie shows when he scores. I want these staged things to be few and far between. Those that defended him said it was ok because he was just showing genuine joy from having scored.

Posted by: decoy13 | March 19, 2009 11:47 PM | Report abuse

so, what's the over/under on how many crazy pittsburgh fans post angry tirades here? :) and how many of them will contain insults at us, claiming that everyone here is:
a. not from washington
b. a bandwagon fan
c. never went to a game before this year
d. ignorant of hockey
e. harboring secret crushing on Malkin and/or Crosby
f. stupid

Posted by: RedBirdie | March 19, 2009 11:47 PM | Report abuse

what about sean avery doing pushups??? weird but funny...
IT WAS OVIE's 50th!!!...again
IT WAS OVIE's 50th!!! one more time for the not so abled
IT WAS OVIE's 50th!!!
and for the plain*ss stupid people
IT WAS OVIE's 50th!!!
Let bruce discuss it with OV...and us, well what should we do..enjoy it or move to PA...
thanks ovie for the amazing goal
can't wait for the playoffs

Posted by: masterx09 | March 19, 2009 11:52 PM | Report abuse


s'ok, great minds...

I've been off meditating on towing the party line on Green's wind problems

Posted by: austinsteve | March 19, 2009 11:57 PM | Report abuse

I thought Tocchet played pretty well while he was here. But Abe had his wallet in vise grips.

Posted by: pga6 | March 20, 2009 12:10 AM | Report abuse

Huge Caps fan
Huge OV fan
That made me cringe

Posted by: ouvan59 | March 20, 2009 1:28 AM | Report abuse

To the Critics: Chill the eff out! It's like 15 seconds of the damn game. Cheez whiz, folks! 50 goals doesn't necessarily happen all that often, does it? If it did, then yeah, get your undergarments in a bunch. It doesn't, so I'll challenge everyone who wants to be all mortified about Ovi celebrating. Let's celebrate by starting a bonfire...with all those sticks up your collective bums. Geez, people, he's still a part of MY Capitals' team so lay off my boy!

Posted by: LeftCoastCapsFan | March 20, 2009 1:36 AM | Report abuse

Obviously the Capitals are my team and I love the fact that Alex Ovechkin plays here. I don't have any issue with his celebrations as they seemed tame for the most part. Jumping on the glass doesnt seem like a big deal to me, getting the crowds into the game by holding his hand to his ear is okay as well.

This one however, was over the top. It was premeditated and extreme I think. It could seriously backfire if some goon takes it the wrong way. Not saying it would be deserved but still...we can ill afford to lose Ovechkin in a retaliation shot.

Posted by: Killerangel81 | March 20, 2009 2:20 AM | Report abuse

NHL needs to evolve if its going to survive! Strange when they get upset with a celebration and not somebody getting their TEETH PUNCHED OUT!

Posted by: LongTimeSkinsFan | March 20, 2009 4:28 AM | Report abuse

Seriously, whats the crying about? I read the article, prior to watching it online, so I was expecting something T.O. like... the man dropped his stick on the ice for 5 seconds. People who have issues with this need to get over themselves. I am definitely not a fan of the self aggrandizing nature of some members from other professional sports, but a small celebration in good taste after achieving a real milestone is fine. So Ovechkin adds a little flare, good for him.

Cap's in '09!

Posted by: airforcegymrat | March 20, 2009 4:44 AM | Report abuse

Hey Guys, I'm not a Caps fan and don't often get to see Ovechkin play so tell me this please: is he somewhat of a puck hog? I know he's a gifted hockey player but I noticed he has about 6oo shots on goal this season, way ahead of anyone else. Is there any other facet to his game?

Posted by: germanhammer | March 20, 2009 4:46 AM | Report abuse

It was his 50th. I was expecting something like what he did. If he did the pre-planned dance for every goal I wouldn't mind the complaining, but for goodness sake give the man a break! All you caps fans know you loved it :)

Posted by: capscoach | March 20, 2009 6:22 AM | Report abuse

I there any other facet to OV's game? Check out his helpers,his hits,his 3rd period goals.What about that play on D last week when he rushed back,dived and blocked a 1 on 1 with his stick. He's the best player in the World,that's all. Get real.

Posted by: ridgely1 | March 20, 2009 6:40 AM | Report abuse

Seriously, who cares? It would be one thing if he were a true to life showboater with the attitude to match (Paging, Mr. Owens?). 50 goals and lots of hardware in 2008, he can have a little fun.

Posted by: ljo211 | March 20, 2009 6:54 AM | Report abuse


I will answer the post as best and objectively as I can.

First off, I am not sure what stats you are looking at but Ovechkin has 461 shots on goal this year with 9 games remaining. He wont hit 600. One of the biggest complaints against Crosby is the fact he doesnt take shots. They want Crosby at 5-6 shots a game which would end up putting him not too far off Ovechkin's usual yearly output.

What else does he do? Well he currently has 50 goals and 43 assists, not bad for a primary goal scorer and is 2nd in the NHL in points. He also is among the league leaders in hits. Really the only part of his game that he lacks is back checking. (When an offensive player gets back into the defensive zone to make a play or cover for an defenseman out of position)

On to the puck hog aspect. Frankly the answer is yes. I would say though so was Michael Jordan. When Jordan trusted his teammates and found he had capable players he distributed the ball more, but still knew his place on the team as the big dog. Ovechkin has done the same thing. With Green emerging as a power play assassin and Backstrom coming along his assists have gotten better, not to forget Semin improving yearly. I want my best players taking their shots and setting up their teammates.

Posted by: Killerangel81 | March 20, 2009 6:56 AM | Report abuse

I love Ovie, I love his enthusiasm and I love what he's done for hockey in Washington. But, he brought out his inner Ocho Cinco and I didn't like that. I don't blame Tocchet for being upset. Lift a Cup or two and you can do all the celebrating you want. Jersey has two games at hand, Boston still leads us in the standings and we haven't won ANYTHING yet.

Posted by: stwasm | March 20, 2009 7:33 AM | Report abuse

OV is officially a punk. He needs to be taken aside and smacked. He's a selfish player and the celebrations prove it. It's all about him. The thing about the sport of hockey, that most of you do not get, is that it's all about respect and honor, two things that basketball never had, and football lost years ago. Baseball still has it, because you show someone up and you get 95mph cheese in your earhole. The hockey legends, of which there are none in or near Washington, need to take this opportunity to stop this now. For the coach to allow this, his teammates, is disgusting. Keep the T.O.'s out of the best sport in the world.

Posted by: pigskins87 | March 20, 2009 7:34 AM | Report abuse

That celebration was total CRAP! Boudreau better get that stuff reigned in because it's all in good fun until somebody takes a serious run at Ovechkin in the playoffs and he gets injured. It's crap. I equate that to the stuff T.O. does in the NFL. And anybody who's NOT a Dallas fan would agree with me.

Posted by: blanknerc | March 20, 2009 7:40 AM | Report abuse

SELANNE DID THAT and everyone did that when they were young and Ovie is young. Jose had a good idea, but Backis and Greenie didnt follow this idea.
"Old crusty Don Cherry Curse" is broken, Ovie can score and celebrate again :) Sure he will coll it down, cuz it was a club achievment in scoring 50 goals for 3 seasons.
P.S. BB should not criticize Ovie or Theo (for an idea) cuz its simply a 50 goal mark that needs a special celebration. There were no mocking in acting that his stick is "hot" cuz it really is hot :)

Posted by: Hazz | March 20, 2009 7:49 AM | Report abuse

In all fairness, Boudreau did say he was surprised by the celebration and plans to talk to Ovie about it. Again, lift a Cup, then you can do all the celebrating you want.

Posted by: stwasm | March 20, 2009 8:02 AM | Report abuse

Boudreau is going to put a stop to this crap immediately. Some guy is going to take a run at Ovechkin and he will be lost for the season and then everyone who thinks that this is the NFL with their idiotic showmanship will be wringing their hands.

I predict a private meeting with Ovechkin and then a team meeting where the law will be laid down. I know that Bourdreau is pissed.

Posted by: MKadyman | March 20, 2009 8:03 AM | Report abuse

Germanhammer - no. No other facet. The NHL generally gives the MVP to the league's shot leader...

Posted by: rok_d_rEd | March 20, 2009 8:10 AM | Report abuse

@germanhammer - Since you are chiming in today I might assume you are a TB fan, in which case I wonder if you think that Phil Espisito (your commentator) had only one facet to his game? He does, after all, still hold the record for most SOG in a season.

@pigskins87 - If you think hockey is the greatest sport you should change your monkier. Or is your real name Dan Snyder?

Posted by: ds_kelly | March 20, 2009 8:25 AM | Report abuse

C'mon Bruce, lighten up......Hockey is more like soccer that football and the celebration after a goooaaaaalllllllll in soccer is allot more wild than what Ovie is doing. The NHL should pay him a bonus, the more he scores and celebrates the more eyeballs will be watching the league. Holy puck Batman, you can fight for no reason and that's cool, but no celebrating after goal #50? Get real

Posted by: yodude1 | March 20, 2009 8:29 AM | Report abuse

I don't see what the big deal is. It's not as if he's doing that after every goal. Who cares...

Posted by: ejohnsto | March 20, 2009 8:45 AM | Report abuse

I didn't like his celebration at all. I'm not sure I'd want to see an opposition player pull a stunt like that at Washington's home rink (Crosby, Malkin, Richards, Avery, etc.). I'm sure that, if someone did, there'd be calls for "revenge". I don't mind Ovechkin celebrating game-winners or OT winners. I just don't want to see some 4th line dufus take a run at Ovechkin as a retaliation.

Posted by: jcurrin | March 20, 2009 8:47 AM | Report abuse

Tochet's upset with Ovechkin's celebration, but Stamkos pulling down and injuring Mike Green is OK? Screw him Rookie or not, that shouldn't be allowed at all.

Posted by: jwash4472 | March 20, 2009 8:50 AM | Report abuse

"Bolts Coach Rick Tocchet was upset, telling reporters: "I grew up in the old days in the Spectrum where in the first period, after that happened, it might have been a three-hour first period. It's not something I like. It's hard for me to see that in our building." "

Yeah, it's hard for us to see that in your building too, because your team and your coaching skills suck.

Posted by: thegeester | March 20, 2009 8:51 AM | Report abuse

"Huge Caps fan
Huge OV fan
That made me cringe"


It was NOT spontaneous exuberance which is what makes OV such a joy to watch.

I do not want OV mentioned in the same sentence as Ocho Cinco, TO, and the all the other NFL punks. In the NBA hanging on the rim is a technical. What would happen in baseball if A-rod acted like his bat was too hot after a HR? Running the bases too slow after a dinger is a bean-ballable offense.

If Backstrom and Green gathered 'round the stick too, as planned? It would have been a 3-4 hour first period.

The April 9 game will interesting...

Posted by: B-LeaguerD | March 20, 2009 9:15 AM | Report abuse

Jeez, what a bunch of chat about nothing. Made me smile because it was as corny as it gets. What made me cringe was Green getting injured. I don't believe for a second that he got the "wind" knocked out of him. That was a pretty serious shoulder or arm issue. He couldn't even climb over the boards and when he left the ice he couldn't move or raise his arm. I think we have a problem here. Hopefully two weeks will be enough for it to heal.

Posted by: RTR80 | March 20, 2009 9:35 AM | Report abuse

"It was NOT spontaneous exuberance which is what makes OV such a joy to watch."

Bingo. I like the fact that Boudreau said he was going to talk to him about it. For what it's worth I don't think he was trying to show anybody up but it was just a bad idea. Keep up the natural exhuberance and joy when the Caps score, bag the contrived, planned celebrations.

Posted by: ouvan59 | March 20, 2009 9:48 AM | Report abuse

I don't care about players celebrating goals. The only problem I had with last night's was that it was lame.

Posted by: jps2325 | March 20, 2009 9:51 AM | Report abuse

When Cherry criticized Ovechkin, I thought he had it exactly backward. Ovechkin's enthusiasm after a goal is an indication that he thinks that what he's done is difficult because everyone on the ice (i.e. his opponents) are world class. To be happy about scoring is a compliment; arguably, to act non chalant is to suggest that the opponent has no skill. Cherry also missed the fact that Ovechkin is just as happy when other Caps score. He's focused on team results.

Last night's celebration, however, was completely over the line. Class matters, at least to those of us who have long since been turned off by the me-centered NFL and NBA celebrations. As mentioned in the posts above, it was not spontaneous and it was self-celebratory. It's particularly bad because it comes against a bottom feeder like Tampa Bay.

I'm a huge Ovechkin fan, but nobody does him any favors by cheering him on when he steps (this once) over the line.

Good for Bruce, who, as usual, knows where the line is.

Posted by: puff1 | March 20, 2009 10:16 AM | Report abuse

please no one try to muzzle the most exciting player in hockey. He doesnt do any of this to taunt other teams. Those who are getting their panties in bind about this need to lighten up, especially the grouchy mofos out of Canada. This is not only your game anymore, deal with it.

Posted by: gatsu | March 20, 2009 10:42 AM | Report abuse

To all you old school hockey fans- get that stick out of your arses and enjoy the game.
Fighting and cracking someone from behind is ok but don't celebrate after scoring your 50th goal?!?!
People, this is what is saving hockey so you'd better get used to it. And I've been a hockey fan since 1981.

Posted by: luvdc808 | March 20, 2009 10:47 AM | Report abuse

It doesn't bother me that Tocchet is mad, because he's a jacknut.

But Ovechkin went way too far. That was embarrassing.

What, he hasn't scored 50 goals in a season before?

Posted by: writered21 | March 20, 2009 10:51 AM | Report abuse

No doubt the celebration was a little "TO" like and over the top, but he's never done that in the past and what a great way to get back at Cherry! I know OV said that wasn't the reason for the celebration, but you have to belive it was. I enjoyed it because Cherry's comments off the mark. I lost all respect I had to Don Cherry when I heard that and I'm glad OV had his chance to get even. Nicely done.

Posted by: marklee15 | March 20, 2009 11:02 AM | Report abuse

Great player, great accomplishment, but the scripted stunt afterward kinda makes him seem like an a**. Maybe on home ice it would have been different.

Posted by: SandyG1 | March 20, 2009 11:08 AM | Report abuse

I love Ovie. But he was WRONG last night. That was clearly not spontaneous and it was bush league. I'm embarrassed as a Caps fan. Maybe it was intended as kind of giving the finger to Cherry. If so, I'd prefer he just really give him the finger and keep that stuff off the ice.

Posted by: poguesmahone | March 20, 2009 11:12 AM | Report abuse

What would your response be if the table's were turned and it was Zach Parise, Sidney Crosby or Evgeni Malkin doing the exact same thing while they played the Caps? Would your comments be the same? That needs to be your measuring stick for how you accept the criticism of Ovie and how you respond to it.

I am a hockey fan first, then a Pen's fan however I am an Ovie fan as well. He is great for the game and I don't see the big deal about the celebration. To me, it was nothing so out of the ordinary that it needs to be made this big of a deal out of.

Posted by: srutan23 | March 20, 2009 11:26 AM | Report abuse

My feeling is...if you want to lose the fighting in hockey - which has become a debate far more frequently as this season moves along - then you need to be ready to accept players acting out in a different way. What's worse - fighting or celebrating. It surely sends a better, more positive message to celebrate a goal than to throw down the second you feel someone crossed the line.

Posted by: annasmw | March 20, 2009 11:33 AM | Report abuse

So the tough fighting hockey players get their feelings hurt and upset when someone does not follow the "Don Cherry Handbook for Acceptable Canadian Celebrations?"

Time for sarcasm to illustrate how dumb the critics are.


Group Hug
Fist Pump
Half Smile with nothing else
Touching Gloves with the bench
Look up to the sky with maybe a pointed finger upward as well

Jumping into the glass
Dropping to a knee and gliding on the ice with a fist pump
Anything premeditated (i.e. goal 50)

Clearly, the outrage is so justified. I mean, here is a guy who works his rear end off, just scored goal 50 on a 1 on 3, and is giving people who are not diehard hockey fans, a real reason to watch hockey. But, all that being said, in this time of despair for so many, what we need hockey to be is devoid of fun and joy. What we should have is people weeping and gnashing their teeth everytime they score. They should immediately bludgeon themselves with their hockey sticks out of hatred for the attention they just brought to themselves for scoring. Anyone caught smiling in the stands should be removed and flogged outside of the arena, and never allowed to come back. Clearly, OV is just like Terrel Owens. Yeah, he is a cancer in the lockeroom, screams at his coach during the game, publicly gets into pissing matches with the quarterback (Backstrom), and blames all losing on everyone else. He is never accountable.

The criticism is completely absurd. I hope you people who get on OV for this stuff, realize how stupid you sound. Think about what you say before you say it.

Posted by: jackstraaw | March 20, 2009 11:34 AM | Report abuse

I completely agree with jackstraaw. I'm from Edmonton and the common misconception is that everyone from Canada is loves Don Cherry, but the fact of the matter, is that most people are getting tired of this relic .He doesn't realize that the game needs a guy like Ovechkin. I can't help but smile everytime I see this guy in an interview due to the child like enthusiam he exudes. I would kill to have a guy like that on the Oilers.

Posted by: thefish | March 20, 2009 11:43 AM | Report abuse

Who cares what Rick Tocchet thinks about Ovie. I might be wrong here, but wasn't it Tocchet (when traded to Washington) who made it known to the media how upset he was at the deal? And what respect do we owe somebody who was disciplined by the league for his role in a betting scandal.

Posted by: gonchpup | March 20, 2009 11:47 AM | Report abuse

I just think Tocchet was upset that he had Janet Gretzky bet money on a different celebration instead of the "stick on fire" one.

Posted by: hokma | March 20, 2009 11:47 AM | Report abuse

"The criticism is completely absurd. I hope you people who get on OV for this stuff, realize how stupid you sound. Think about what you say before you say it.

Posted by: jackstraaw | March 20, 2009 11:34 AM "

No - the critics do NOT sound stupid.

IMHO, Hockey is about the only respectable sport left, in terms of the players adn how they conduct themselves.

The NBA and NFL are full of a bunch of self-centered "thugs". Quite a few of them condct themselves in a reprehensible manner.

Hickey players, for the most part, seem to be humble, hardworking TEAM orienated athletes. what Ovie did last nite had nothing to do with team, it had to do with Ovie. Regardless of whether or not HE scored 50 goals, he would not have gotten to that point without the help of his TEAM.

Sorry, but in my opinion, Ovechkin was wrong to have done that. It was selfish and disrespectful, to say the least.

The Great One would have never done that. Nor would have Mario.

Posted by: Snowdog | March 20, 2009 11:49 AM | Report abuse

Wow...I read about Ovie's 'celebration' before I saw the highlight, so I was expecting some tasteless, hyper-flamboyant, over the top display. But now I'm wondering why we're even talking about it. It was tame. Completely harmless. He did it for all of about 2-1/2 seconds, then got back to business. As we should. Once again, we're controversy where there is none?

Oh, and while I'm at it...why are we even giving Don Cherry the time of day? I couldn't care less what he thinks. Seriously, the guy is an insignificant piece of dust. If people had ignored this overhyped clown 25 years ago, we wouldn't have to talk about him now.

Posted by: meahern | March 20, 2009 11:56 AM | Report abuse

When did Chad Johnson join the Caps?

When you're as good as Ovie you don't have to advertise.

Posted by: LionelMandrake | March 20, 2009 11:59 AM | Report abuse

"Hickey players, for the most part, seem to be humble, hardworking TEAM orienated athletes. what Ovie did last nite had nothing to do with team, it had to do with Ovie. Regardless of whether or not HE scored 50 goals, he would not have gotten to that point without the help of his TEAM."

Posted by: Snowdog | March 20, 2009 11:49 AM

Do you understand that the implication you and everyone is making is that OV is not a team player? Man, all his teamates really feel that way, GIVEN THAT THE CELEBRATION WAS THEIR IDEA AND IT WAS SUPPOSED TO BE A GROUP CELEBRATION!!!!

And they certainly feel that OV is not a team player when THEY score goals and he is on the ice.

Posted by: jackstraaw | March 20, 2009 12:00 PM | Report abuse

Absolutely cracking up about Mullah Cherry, Ayatollah Tocchet, and the Taliban Canadian hockey media. Maybe Ovei should play in a burkha. LOL.

Posted by: washingtonpost31 | March 20, 2009 12:24 PM | Report abuse

"Do you understand that the implication you and everyone is making is that OV is not a team player? Man, all his teamates really feel that way, GIVEN THAT THE CELEBRATION WAS THEIR IDEA AND IT WAS SUPPOSED TO BE A GROUP CELEBRATION!!!!"

Nope - not saying that at all. There is no DOUBT that Ovie is a team player.

However, as you said, it was supposed to be a group celebration, yet Green backed off - why?

Here is a quote from Green from the TSN recap up that pretty much sums it up... "He told me he was going to do it," Green said. "He wanted me to join in, but there was no way I'd join in on that. I just kind of stood back and let him do what he does."

Yea - why wouldn't Green join in on it? Because he realized it wasn't right. And where was Backstrom? Why didn't he join in?

I love Ovie.I have absolutely NO problem with any other goal celebration that he has done up to this point. But I can guarantee you that had someone like Dale Hunter still been on this team, Ovie would have been slapped upside the head on that move. And rightly so.

Posted by: Snowdog | March 20, 2009 12:26 PM | Report abuse

Pre-meditated celebration crosses the line... I'm all for the outburst of genuine celebration, but you can leave all the gimmicky stuff for other sports. Let's keep it real!

Posted by: OscarEddy | March 20, 2009 12:29 PM | Report abuse

As soon as it happened I knew everyone was gonna whine about it. So many square people out there.

I loved it. It was his 50th goal of the season so he wanted to do something special. As far as I'm concerned when anyone scores 50 in today's NHL they can celebrate it any way they please.

Also, knowing Ovie that was a special for Mr. Cherry. Ovie was basically saying, "Suck it, Don!"

Posted by: ranndino | March 20, 2009 12:33 PM | Report abuse

Not everyone is going to agree with Ovie's celebrations just as there are differing opinions as to what makes for a good hockey game. Some will argue that one of the reasons for allowing fighting to continue is it brings in the fans. I would be willing to bet that, on his own, Ovie generates a different brand of excitement for the fans all around the NHL. I went to a Caps game in Ottawa last year and was blown away by the throngs of kids lined up at the glass to watch him during warm ups. Like it or not, he brings excitement to the game unlike any other player, and his credentials validate it.

Posted by: gonchpup | March 20, 2009 12:34 PM | Report abuse

"As soon as it happened I knew everyone was gonna whine about it. So many square people out there."

Posted by: ranndino | March 20, 2009 12:33 PM

It has NOTHING to do with being square - it has to do with something called RESPECT.


Posted by: Snowdog | March 20, 2009 12:42 PM | Report abuse

It has NOTHING to do with being square - it has to do with something called RESPECT.


Posted by: Snowdog | March 20, 2009 12:42 PM

Respect for what? Please define.

Posted by: jackstraaw | March 20, 2009 1:06 PM | Report abuse

The only problem I had with the celebration was I didn't know exactly what he was doing. The hopping along threw me off.

There is celebration in the NHL. It's not just Ovechkin, and it's not just a recent thing. Didn't Tiger Williams ride his stick through center ice in the 80's? To me, the important thing to note though is Ovechkin doesn't just celebrate his own accomplishments. He celebrates the entire teams'. That's a direct result of his passion and excitement for the game. There is nothing wrong with that.

Last night was definitely showboating, and if he did what he did as a shot against Don Cherry, I applaud that. I just wished he would have gone to the bench and put on a ridiculously flamboyant jacket and made his point crystal clear.

Posted by: PSULion55 | March 20, 2009 2:56 PM | Report abuse

Give me a break. Tocchet has no business critiquing anybody. Didn't he have charges filed against him a few years ago? He's not one to give anybody a speech on ethics. Besides, Ovechkin's just being Ovechkin. He's a colorful, goofy character who prides himself on hard work and determination just like the next guy. If somebody else scores, he's happier than *that* guy.

People shouldn't make this anymore than what it is. I know that this is hockey (the only sport I watch), but c'mon. Ovechkin's not some son of a farmer from Alberta or the Midwest, or the son of some ivy-league alumni, stuffy businessman from the Northeast. Don't expect him to be ultra-humble or uptight.

Did anybody see the goal he scored for the Breakaway Challenge at the ASG? He's not your average superstar. He's not a whiner, he's not dispassionate, he's not selfish, he's not soft, and he's not run-of-the-mill. Hell, he thought Backstrom and Green were going to join him in the act, and you know why? So they could all have fun with it, not just him... but you know, they held back because they are more conservative in celebration (as is everybody compared to Ovechkin).

Ovechkin's not going to say what you think should be scripted and he's not going to do what you want him to do on cue. He's there to be great, to be entertaining, and to have fun. Get with the program.

Posted by: fbutler1 | March 20, 2009 3:15 PM | Report abuse

What a bunch of Marys you guys are. The guy is the best player in the league, by far and he gets excited when he scores, which is refreshing to see. I wish my beloved Oilers had someone on their team who put 50 in the net this year and had half his enthusiasm.

Posted by: thefish | March 20, 2009 3:15 PM | Report abuse

On May 25, 2007, Tocchet plead guilty to conspiracy and promoting gambling.

Rick, buddy- we are not looking to you for advise on anything.

Posted by: daddy_axe | March 20, 2009 3:23 PM | Report abuse

The big fuss about banning fighting and then this crap?. Sign with an NFL team O.V

Posted by: rawhomer | March 20, 2009 8:36 PM | Report abuse

actually I'm a Wings fan and since we don't often play Ovechkin, I don't know a lot about him except he scores a lot. Not expressing an opinion on him one way or another. Just wanted to know what else he did besides shoot.

Posted by: germanhammer | March 20, 2009 10:24 PM | Report abuse

Much ado about nothing..........

For those of you that want to make comparisons to Ocho Cinco and TO, ask yourself this. Is it the celebrations that have caused their problems or is it their reputations as self centered athletes that are cancers in the locker room. I have never once heard anyone in the media or in his peer group accuse Ovie of being a bad guy. If TO and Ocho Cinco were well liked by everyone, I doubt anybody would care about their end zone celebrations.
I think a much better example would be Bruce Smith. His celebrations tended to be over the top but he was a beloved figure by his teammates and fans alike so nobody seemed to care.

Posted by: croftonpost | March 21, 2009 2:14 AM | Report abuse

Yes, Ovechkin is a great player but this is about the traditions of hockey and what distinguishes it from football. Are the players going to have choreographed routines and dance for every event that occurs on ice like a blocked shot or good check similar to what football has devolved in? I hope the next time the Caps pull something like Ovechkin's nonsense, someone on the other team takes it upon themselves to give him something to really remember. Hockey players are paid to play hockey, not dance and make fools of themselves.

Posted by: realhockeyfan | March 21, 2009 9:05 AM | Report abuse

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