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Ovechkin on KHL interest: It’s nice, but I have a contract

Sep 6, 2013, 9:03 AM EDT

Alex Ovechkin #8 of the Washington Capitals skates against the New York Rangers in Game Three of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals during the 2013 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs at Madison Square Garden on May 6, 2013 in New York City. The Rangers defeated the Capitals 4-3.
(May 5, 2013 - Source: Bruce Bennett/Getty Images North America) Getty Images

Capitals GM George McPhee doesn’t seem too concerned about Moscow Dynamo general director Andrey Safronov’s interest in luring Alex Ovechkin to the KHL, but for any Capitals fans that didn’t share his confidence, Ovechkin did his best to quell those fears.

“Yeah, I’m here and I’m gonna work for my contract,” Ovechkin said, according to CSN Washington. “Not gonna worry about it.”

Ovechkin admitted that it was still nice to hear that Moscow Dynamo was interested in him. He played for them in his youth before moving to North America and returned for 31 contests during the lockout.

“But I’m here and I have a contract,” Ovechkin reiterated.

Ilya Kovalchuk’s decision to bolt to the KHL despite being under contract has led to a lot of “what if” speculation and Safronov’s comments fed into that, but every situation is unique. Other Russian stars renewed their commitment to their respective NHL clubs over the summer by signing new contracts and while Ovechkin might end up playing in the KHL again someday, he’s “excited” to return to the Capitals for the 2013-14 campaign.

  1. bohman88 - Sep 6, 2013 at 9:21 AM

    GMGM is an idiot, and doesn’t seemed too concerned about anything Capitals related. Also, I can’t imagine Ovie saying anything other than this. If the guy did or does have interest in leaving he’s not going to be open about it. Did we not learn anything from Kovalchuk? All that being said, I hope Ovie is being genuine and sticks around for at least the remainder of his contract. People can hate on Ovie all they want, but the fact of the matter is he is a beast and the Caps would nearly be irrelevant if number 8 is not on the ice. Let us also not forget he is fun to watch when he’s on his game.

  2. amityvillefun - Sep 6, 2013 at 9:23 AM

    Thanks for sticking around Ovie. You shut the naysayers and critics up big time last year.

    • c9castine - Sep 6, 2013 at 2:23 PM

      Why cause he played 23 good games? YOu can win a scoring title if you want that is an accomplishment but still can’t lead his team in the playoffs

      • hockeyflow33 - Sep 6, 2013 at 3:39 PM

        Scoring is bad?

      • c9castine - Sep 7, 2013 at 12:43 AM

        winning is better.

  3. goodolejr - Sep 6, 2013 at 9:37 AM

    The caps have a chance to be VERY good this year. It seems like Oates may have gotten through to Ovi last year. If Ovi is back to being Ovi, and Holtby continues to shine, this may be the year they finally get to the Conference Finals, and possibly beyond. Even without being a Caps fan, I still hope he gets back to his old ways because MAN is this guy fun to watch when he’s at his best.

  4. 950003cups - Sep 6, 2013 at 10:25 AM

    Latest out of the Kremlin Hockey League is Anssi Salmela had his contract terminated due to “alcohol problems”.

    Imagine the crap they’ll pull if Kovy has a bad start?

  5. quizguy66 - Sep 6, 2013 at 10:59 AM

    Kovalchuk had a contract too. Just sayin’
    -QG

    • ethanmacleod1685 - Sep 6, 2013 at 11:11 AM

      -QG ? Lol

      • pirovash88 - Sep 6, 2013 at 7:31 PM

        -Queef Guy

  6. thecrabcakestate - Sep 6, 2013 at 2:17 PM

    Say what you will about Ovechkin but this is great news for caps fans. He is about as important to this team as Peyton Manning was to the colts. And we saw what happened when Manning got hurt.

    The Caps have about as much talent around Ovie as the Colts had. Without Ovechkin we would be drafting top 10 for sure. Probably top 5. I say only top 5 too cause there are some BAD teams out there that I won’t name/insult fans of.

    And lets be real. Ovechkin is the only truly elite talent this team has. I love Backstrom but he disappears in the playoffs. Brouwer and Laich are truly talented workhorses but not elite talent. Holtby has potential to be great but he isn’t a superstar yet. I could go on but I’ve made my point.

    I’m not saying we can’t win it all. I’m just saying we should pray Kuznetsov turns out to be what we think he is. Cause it’s hard to put an entire team on your back throughout the playoffs.

    • stakex - Sep 6, 2013 at 9:31 PM

      Yeah, for all the crap Ovechkin catches… he has really done a lot when you consider the team he’s had around him most of his career. Guys like Crosby and Towes have the advantage of playing on a star studded team. They make those teams better sure, but they don’t have to carry the entire team on their back at all times like Ovechkin does. Its very very hard for a team to make it deep in the playoffs when you are a one trick wonder.

      Gretzky is a prime example. When he won his Cups with the Oilers, he was playing on one of the best teams in history. Once he was traded to the Kings, a much less talented team, he was simply unable to carry them all the way. He got them close one year, but even the best player in history wasn’t able to carry a subpar team all the way.

      So for everyone who blames Ovechkin for the Caps playoff struggles… perhaps you should look at the GM first as wonder why he hasn’t assembled a better supporting cast around Ovechkin.

  7. thecrabcakestate - Sep 6, 2013 at 2:18 PM

    And yes I love football. But I don’t like manning that much. It was just a good/recent analogy

  8. c9castine - Sep 6, 2013 at 2:25 PM

    That’s all he has? I m here and I have a contract…real reassuring. At least Malkin Said No way I’m a penguin for life

  9. thecrabcakestate - Sep 6, 2013 at 2:32 PM

    Ovechkin’s playoff stats are elite. The numbers don’t lie. That’s when it matters. This year excluded he has always shown up. If you want to knock him. Know what you’re talking about.

    Plus those 23 games were during a season in a new system. The whole team was horrible until he put them on his back

  10. blomfeld - Sep 7, 2013 at 1:13 AM

    GROW UP OVI AND AT LEAST ‘TRY’ TO EMULATE THE ‘GLORY’ WHICH PRECEDED YOU !

  11. barkley4life - Sep 8, 2013 at 10:14 AM

    Typical Caps fans making Ovi excuses. He had a great year in a short season and disappeared in the playoffs. He’s been mediocre the last 2-3yrs previous.

  12. thecrabcakestate - Sep 8, 2013 at 12:43 PM

    Mediocre for him. That’s still better than most players in the league. His salary is too much for that though. He needs to remain where he was last year.

    Also, he may not have been up to par for a few previous seasons, but think about what he was before that. That’s why caps fans are excited about his play again. Cause being one of the best players in the world has been the norm for most of his career.

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