Dec 5, 2011, 12:09 PM EDT
From the “throw stuff at wall, hope it sticks” file: John Steigerwald — author of the infamous “That Giants fan had getting beaten into a coma coming to him” piece earlier this year — has suggested Alex Ovechkin‘s recent decline is because he’s not on performance-enhancing drugs anymore.
There are whispers and maybe even some out-loud conversations around the hockey world about Ovechkin’s problem being a lack of artificial help.
In other words, performance-enhancing drugs.
The guy was superhuman when he first came into the league. He had the hardest shot anybody had seen in years. Goalies around the league talked about how it was different from everybody else’s shot.
He’s taking about half as many shots as he used to.
Here are the main propositions that led to Steigerwald’s theory:
1) Ovechkin’s doctor was charged with bringing PEDs over the border from Canada.
2) A Washington D.C. chiropractor was investigated after he bragged about supplying steroids to members of the Capitals and Washington Nationals.
3) The same doctor who had Ovechkin as a patient also treated Tiger Woods.
4) In his autobiography, Georges Laraque said steroids were commonplace in the NHL and that many players quit doing them prior to the 2010 Winter Olympics, because Olympic drug testing is much tougher than the NHL’s.
I haven’t seen such reliance on hearsay and conjecture since Lionel Hutz sued the creator of Itchy & Scratchy.
In the spirit of making (and debunking) conspiratorial accusations, PHT offers up the following:
1) John Steigerwald is the brother of Paul Steigerwald, play-by-play man for the Pittsburgh Penguins.
2) Ovechkin’s competed in four IIHF World Championships — which also have stringent drug testing — in 2005, 2007, 2008 and 2010. (Puck Daddy’s Dmitry Chesnokov notes Ovechkin got tabbed for a random steroid test in 2010.)
3) The PED/Tiger Woods doctor reference is to Dr. Anthony Galea. Good luck trying to find anything beyond message board material linking Ovechkin to Galea.
4) John Steigerwald is a sports columnist for a community paper covering two counties in Pennsylvania. The paper website’s current front page story is four local high school students singing Christmas carols for a rotary club fundraiser.
Let me ask you: Does this publication sound like it’s privy to super-insider scoops about incredibly famous athletes?
Jul 25, 2014, 5:12 PM EDT
He lost the starting job to Jonathan Bernier last season.
Jul 25, 2014, 4:05 PM EDT
He was taken with the fourth overall pick.
Jul 25, 2014, 3:00 PM EDT
Two-time Stanley Cup winner played last season with KHL club HC Donbass.
Jul 25, 2014, 2:00 PM EDT
“I wish I had a really good answer — where this came from and why, and how it came about — but I don’t, to be honest.”
Jul 25, 2014, 1:01 PM EDT
“We’re hoping the change of scenery is going to do him good.”
Jul 25, 2014, 12:09 PM EDT
But not before having played his first NHL game since 2009-10.
Jul 25, 2014, 11:11 AM EDT
“It’s a fairly simple one because Marc wants to be here,”
Jul 25, 2014, 10:13 AM EDT
The 32nd overall pick at the 2009 NHL Entry Draft.
Jul 25, 2014, 9:00 AM EDT
He made his NHL debut with Washington last season.
Jul 25, 2014, 8:00 AM EDT
Friday’s collection of links.
Jul 24, 2014, 11:08 PM EDT
In other words, they want him to be a shutdown center
Jul 24, 2014, 10:14 PM EDT
Eriksson’s looking to bounce back after suffering two concussions last season.
Jul 24, 2014, 9:06 PM EDT
He’ll get a fresh start after struggling with Vancouver.
Jul 24, 2014, 8:00 PM EDT
He’s coming back after testing the free agent waters.
Jul 24, 2014, 6:57 PM EDT
It’s that time of the year.
Jul 24, 2014, 5:53 PM EDT
He started in nine games for the Flames last season.
Jul 24, 2014, 4:42 PM EDT
The Canucks selected him with one of the picks they got from the Ryan Kesler trade.
Jul 24, 2014, 3:31 PM EDT
The two sides managed to avoid arbitration despite a $1.45 million gap on a one-year deal.
Jul 24, 2014, 3:15 PM EDT
Alternately known as “the guy Boston got for Vladimir Sobotka.”
Jul 24, 2014, 2:19 PM EDT
Journeyman split last season between the Rangers and Penguins.
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