Russia's new top line: Ovechkin, Malkin and Semin
Here's another hockey update from Sport-Express' Slava Malamud, who will be blogging for us throughout the Games:
Get ready for the Dream Line!
Saturday afternoon's Team Russia practice featured a switch-around in the top two lines, with Pavel Datsyuk moving to pivot Ilya Kovalchuk and Maxim Afinogenov. This means that Evgeni Malkin will take his place on the top line, setting up the long-anticipated partnership between the Penguins superstar and the Capitals' dynamic duo of Alexander Semin and Alex Ovechkin.
After the practice, Ovechkin commented on his new center.
"How do I like [playing with Malkin]? If we were to put you on the line with him, you would like it too," Ovechkin said with a smile. "I don't think it will be too different an experience [from Datsyuk], because all players on our team are good. It will probably have a bit more physical force. More speed. The most important thing is to play your own game, instead of trying to adapt to a linemate."
Ovechkin and Malkin have played on the same line at the 2005 World Championships, the 2006 Olympics in Turin and the 2006 World Championships. And then, of course, there was the All-Star Game's Gatorade-squirting, face-shield-wiping togetherness.
The superstar line will debut at 3 pm on Sunday against Jaromir Jagr and the Czech Republic.
February 20, 2010; 6:57 PM ET
Categories: Alex Ovechkin , Ice hockey , Vancouver 2010
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