(Courtesy of Toni L. Sandys/The Washington Post )
Prior to Tuesday night’s game against the Montreal Canadiens, the Washington Capitals announced Alexander Ovechkin would be the team’s newest captain after the departure of Chris Clark to Columbus.
Ovechkin becomes the team’s 14th captain and the first European-born one and will most likely remain captain until his contract expires in 2020-21. He becomes the third-youngest captain at 24 in the NHL behind Jason Toews, 21 and Sidney Crosby,22.
Ovechkin becomes the seventh Russian-born player to captain an NHL team joining the likes of Alexei Yashin (Ottawa & Islanders), Alexei Kovalev (Montreal), Pavel Bure (Florida), Alexander Mogilny (Buffalo), Alexei Zhamnov (Chicago), and Ilya Kovalchuk (Atlanta).
Kovalchuk and Ovechkin are the only two active captains and both will be essential to Team Russia next month in Vancouver. Ovechkin was voted unanimously by his teammates and was greeted to applause when it was revealed.
Ovie was originally offered the captain’s ‘C’ three years ago but declined due to a poor grasp on the English language. Now three years later the face of the Capitals franchise is the voice of reason on and off the ice.
Below are videos of Ovechkin putting on the jersey for the first time followed by his post-game interview on the captaincy courtesy of the NHL and NHL.com.
Further below you will find a video to a famous Russian song that translates to captain, captain smile! which could not be more appropriate for the newest Capitals captain who has hockey’s most recognizable smile.