Alex Ovechkin/kid video: An amusing accident, that's all


For the most part, I’m amused by the creativity of conspiracy theories and the surprising sensitivity fan bases exhibit, especially considering the often barbaric violence featured in this sport. That being said, there are moments when the persecution complex rears its tedious, ugly head.

Last night, Brandon posted the video of Alex Ovechkin accidentally giving the poor little Montreal Canadiens kid an ice spray. Naturally, Capitals fans vented their anger at him on Twitter (a common pastime on the popular social network) for broaching the subject … or maybe they were angry about his original headline? Look, maybe there is indeed a Worldwide Conspiracy against the Capitals and all of their supporters, yet it seems more likely that there are certain fans who foster a warped David vs. Goliath fetish.

Regardless of how “important” people may find the story, it is becoming a subject of some debate and therefore is worthy of discussion (even if our main point ends up being that it is clearly overblown). Dave Stubbs of Habs Inside/Out explains away the scenario.

Other players need the fast laps to get pumped. But Ovechkin does this. Game 3, he came so hard that his stop nearly sliced the stray cable of the cameraman kneeling on the ice to shoot the Habs coming onto the rink. He’ll do the same for Game 6, if there is one and if he’s not in the starting six.

The good news is, this flag-waving kid will live forever on YouTube. Too bad for him the snow from Ovechkin’s skates melted on his socks, or he could have sold them for a pile of dough on eBay.

But imagine if Ovie had slipped. They’d still be taking the kid off the boards with a spatula.

Stubbs takes the correct approach with this video. It’s obviously a bizarre mistake/accident/gaffe/noun that won’t upset Capitals fans, but can’t the Internet have fun with odd moment? Maybe there are people admonishing Ovechkin for showering a Montreal youth with one of hockey’s greatest signs of “disrespect” but I think the majority of us are either laughing or yawning.

Rub some dirt on it and calm down, fans of every team. I assure you if any other player sprayed a kid like that, it would be worth a look. No one’s out to get your team, we’re all just floating in the universe with little reason, trying to make sense of this world while clicking on as many dumb Internet videos as we can during a workday. Is that so wrong? If it is, then I don’t want to be right.

Report: Kings, Richards nearing settlement

Mike Richards
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The Los Angeles Kings and Mike Richards may be nearing a settlement in their dispute over Richards’ terminated contract, TSN’s Bob McKenzie is reporting.

You can read the report for all the details, but we’re sure curious about this part:

If a settlement is reached, there’s no word yet on what salary cap penalties the Kings would still face. There’s bound to be something, but not likely as onerous as the full value of Richards’ contract, which carries with it a cap hit of $5.75 million. If there’s a settlement, Richards would undoubtedly become a free agent though there’s no telling at this point what monies he would be entitled to from the Kings in a settlement.

The issue here is precedent, and what this case could set. The NHL and NHLPA can’t allow teams to escape onerous contracts through a back door, and many are adamant that that’s what the Kings were attempting to do in Richards’ case.

Bettman to players: Don’t screw up ‘once-in-a-lifetime opportunity’ with drugs

Gary Bettman
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The NHL wants to take an educational approach — not a punitive one — to deter its players from using illicit drugs like cocaine.

“My interest is not to go around punishing people,” Bettman told Sportsnet today.

“My interest is getting players to understand the consequences of doing something that could jeopardize this great, once-in-a-lifetime opportunity that they’ve been given, to play in the NHL.”

While some players have expressed surprise at hearing that cocaine use is growing, the anecdotal evidence of substance abuse has been very much in the news, from Jarret Stoll‘s arrest to Mike Richards’ arrest to, more recently, Zack Kassian‘s placement in the NHL/NHLPA’s treatment program.

“We don’t have the unilateral right to do things here. We need the consent of the Players’ Association,” Bettman said. “It’s not about punishment. It’s about making sure we get it to stop.”

Related: Cocaine in the NHL: A concern, but not a crisis?