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Ovechkin's mother was in the Olympics

Vancouver won't be Alex Ovechkin's first Olympics -- and it's hardly a novel thing for his family. Ovechkin led Russia to a fifth-place finish and was named to the all-tournament team in Turin in 2006, scoring a team-high five goals in eight games.

But another family member already has two Olympic golds -- his mother, Tatiana. She won them as a member of the Soviet Union's basketball team in 1976 and 1980. In a 2006 pre-Olympics profile by Barry Svrluga of The Post, Ovechkin said: "My mother, she is a great sportsman. She taught me so much. How to play. How to play hard. How to win."

Tatiana Ovechkin has the hardened look of the athlete she was, and she speaks brusquely and seemingly without emotion when asked about her own career, not to mention that of her son. "I am very proud of Alex," she said recently through an interpreter, but her eyes stared straight ahead as the words passed her lips, painted with bright red lipstick.
"They take their sports very, very seriously," McPhee said of the Ovechkin family.

For the full story, click here. Also check out the follow-up Barry wrote the day after Russia won a big matchup with Canada in the Turin quarterfinals.

By Jon DeNunzio  |  January 2, 2010; 10:04 AM ET
Categories:  Alex Ovechkin , Ice hockey  
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