Skip to content

Caps’ owner will let Ovechkin play in Olympics

Jan 17, 2013, 11:02 PM EDT

Alex Ovechkin AP

If Alex Ovechkin wants to play in the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia, then he can even if the NHL doesn’t participate.

“If they don’t and Alex still wants to go to the Olympics, I’m going to be honest, I’m going to let him go,” Leonsis said, according to the Washington Post. “I just think it’s kind of a once-in-a-lifetime thing for him to have something played in Russia.

“He’s going to be a torchbearer and it’s very important to him and his family. Who am I to get in the way of him wanting to fulfill that? And I know that’s a slippery slope because if Nick [Backstrom] says then he wants to play for Sweden, we’ll have to cross that bridge when we get to it. But I think that I’m going to lean to the side of the players in that one.”

Leonsis’ statements are nothing new. In fact, he said something very similar in 2009 in a The Hockey News report. Still, with less than 13 months until the start of the games and no commitment from the NHL, it’s noteworthy that Leonsis is strongly standing behind his earlier statements.

Ovechkin told the Post that he’s “proud” to have been selected as one of the torchbearers and plans to participate in the Olympics.

The Winter Games will take place from Feb. 7-23, so if the NHL opts against playing, then Ovechkin would be absent for a key portion of the season.

Leonsis added that the 2014 Olympics was “never brought up, discussed at all during the [labor] negotiations.”

CSNWashington.com has the entire Leonsis Q&A (split into three parts) below:

“I’ve never made a penny of profit”

“Our fans will come back”

“Alex Ovechkin is psyched right now”

Latest Posts
  1. Struggling Coyotes ‘not anywhere good enough,’ says GM

    Oct 30, 2014, 12:52 PM EDT

    Don Maloney AP

    “So we need to get better or things are going to change around here probably sooner rather than later.”

  2. Will the Sabres return Reinhart to junior?

    Oct 30, 2014, 12:32 PM EDT

    Sam Reinhart AP

    We should find out after tonight’s game.

  3. Pens recall Megna

    Oct 30, 2014, 12:02 PM EDT

    Phoenix Coyotes v Pittsburgh Penguins Phoenix Coyotes v Pittsburgh Penguins

    He appeared in 36 games last year.

  4. Weiss (groin) heading back to Detroit, unable to play for Grand Rapids

    Oct 30, 2014, 11:51 AM EDT

    Detroit Red Wings v Florida Panthers Getty Images

    If you’re curious what a buyout would cost the Wings, click on the post.

  5. Kings will have full complement of players tonight vs. Pens

    Oct 30, 2014, 10:29 AM EDT

    Chicago Blackhawks v Los Angeles Kings - Game Three Getty Images

    After playing a man short on Tuesday in Philly.

  6. Fasth ready to return, Gazdic starts conditioning stint

    Oct 30, 2014, 9:52 AM EDT

    Viktor Fasth Getty Images

    Some good news for Edmonton on the injury front.

  7. Stars’ other big summer addition – Hemsky – off to ugly start

    Oct 30, 2014, 8:55 AM EDT

    Ales Hemsky Getty Images

    If he could get going, Dallas wouldn’t be as reliant on its top line.

  8. PHT Morning Skate: Fighting majors way down this season

    Oct 30, 2014, 8:01 AM EDT

    Eric Staal, Nick Bonino AP

    The numbers are even more striking when you compare Oct. 2014 to Oct. 2003

  9. Smith, Predators halt Oilers’ winning streak

    Oct 30, 2014, 12:56 AM EDT

    Craig Smith, Filip Forsberg AP

    Nashville continues its strong start to 2014-15.

  10. Red Wings’ Weiss still dealing with groin injury

    Oct 29, 2014, 11:50 PM EDT

    Detroit Red Wings v Florida Panthers Getty Images

    He sat out the third period for Grand Rapids because of soreness.

  11. Video: Will dirty hits continue to go down?

    Oct 29, 2014, 11:21 PM EDT

    John Moore AP

    Interesting discussion between Bob McKenzie and Mike Milbury.

  12. NHL explains why officials waved off Predators’ goal

    Oct 29, 2014, 10:45 PM EDT

    waveoff

    Some controversial calls on a light Wednesday night.

Featured video

Illegal hits are down -- but will it last?

Sign up for Fantasy hockey

Top 10 NHL Player Searches
  1. E. Staal (3270)
  2. C. Crawford (3152)
  3. P. Stastny (2477)
  4. M. Gaborik (2462)
  5. E. Kane (2373)
  1. A. Kopitar (2222)
  2. V. Hedman (2114)
  3. D. Heatley (2037)
  4. J. Franzen (1925)
  5. N. Foligno (1888)