Is Ovechkin just enthusiastic or a jerk?

20

March

Time for you to have your say.

If you did not see Capitals superstar Alex Ovechkin celebrate his 50th goal during Thursdaynight's 5-2 victory over the Lightning, picture a guy crouched down over a fire warming his hands. That is kind of what Ovechkin did after he scored his league-best 50th to say his stick was too hot to handle. He said he came up with the idea with some teammates.

You know Ovechkin's story. The 23-year-old is one of the game's most talented players. He was last season's MVP and he is leading the Caps to the Southeast title. But there has been some controversy as CBCanalyst and former NHL coach Don Cherry and Pittsburgh's Sidney Crosby have criticized Ovechkin for perceived excessive celebrations. The celebration against the Lightning might have crossed into that area. At least the Lightning believed so.

It's all in Thursday's story but I'll leave you with a few tidbits.

Coach Rick Tocchet: "He came down a notch in my book after that. I grew up in the old days in the Spectrum, and that first period after that happened, it might have been a three-hour first period. So, it's not something I like. It's hard for me to accept to see that in our building for somebody to do that."

In other words, he was upset no one kicked Ovechkin's butt.

I also liked this quote from goalie Mike McKenna, who summed up the debate.

"It's not something I've never seen on the NHL level," McKenna said. "I'm a traditionalist when it comes to hockey. I appreciate guys who play the game hard and are humble. Alex is always exciting to watch and he's great for the game, but it's not something I would have done. When I saved his breakaway I could have done a spin move or something, but I didn't."

As for Ovechkin, 23, he joined Teemu Selanne as the only active players with three 50-goal seasons.And he said he can't wait for Cherry to see the video.

"Oh, yeah, he's going to be (mad), for sure," Ovechkin said. "I love it. I can't wait till he says something about me. Old coaches, old system, you know."

So where do you come down? Is that kind of stuff the personality and enthusiasm the league needs, or should Ovechkin think twice about perhaps showing up an opponent?

[Last modified: Sunday, August 16, 2009 4:38pm]

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