Alex Ovechkin is an NHL All-Star for the 2011-12 season, but whether he attends this weekend in Ottawa remains up in the air after the league suspended the Washington Capitals captain for three games.
Ovechkin has not spoken publicly on the matter since being suspended, and a Caps spokesman said Monday night he had “no comment at this time.” A league spokesman said all he knew was that Ovechkin had not been suspended from the NHL’s All-Star Weekend.
He’s eligible to go, but TSN reported on “Insider Trading” later Monday night that Ovechkin was likely to pull out of the festivities.
“The word out of Washington tonight is that at this point Alexander Ovechkin does not want to go to the All-Star weekend as a suspended player,” Bob McKenzie said. “No firm decision’s been made on anything, but all accounts would lead us to believe that there will be some decisions in Washington [Tuesday] with the Capitals, with Ovechkin about this issue. I would bet right now that Alexander Ovechkin’s going to want to withdraw from the NHL All-Star Game.”
McKenzie went on to say, “The sense seems to be that the NHL would not make a big issue if Alexander Ovechkin said he were uncomfortable being at All-Star Weekend as a suspended player.”
Expect Ovechkin and his All-Star status to be the topic of conversation around the Caps’ morning skate Tuesday. General manager George McPhee left the team’s practice facility Monday night not long before the three-game suspension was announced.
It would make sense for Ovechkin to skip the All-Star Game if he was indeed “uncomfortable” about answering suspension questions all weekend, especially from Canadian media. But the 26-year-old has talked about liking the attention of playing in Canada.
At the end of the day, though, it’s uncertain if Ovechkin cares about going to the All-Star Game. The morning before All-Star rosters were announced, he was asked if he would be disappointed to not make it.
“No, because I’m going to go straight up to vacation somewhere,” Ovechkin said.
Click here to watch the “Insider Training” clip.