Today, the first of a five-part series on why the Washington Capitals should do the once-unthinkable and trade Alexander Ovechkin, their captain and leader.
Reason #1: Meet the new boss, not the same as the old boss.
Though the Caps’ captain is still a talented goal scorer, he’s not the electrifying Ovie of old. Despite his strong showing last week, the 50-goal seasons are gone and never coming back, as are the days of Ovechkin vs Sid Crosby for Best Player in the World status.
Ovechkin’s production has been slipping since 2010-11, when he barely scraped past 30 goals. The following season he totaled just 65 points, behind such offensive legends as Scott Hartnell and Valtteri Filipulla. This season Ovie sits 18th in league scoring – hardly where you’d expect to find a guy pulling down the kind of dough he does, for doing just one thing: scoring.
Another stat: the Great 8 has taken 136 shots this year, way more than anyone else in the league. His once-deadly aim has deserted him, as his shooting percentage is a measly 11.8%. For comparison, Chris Kunitz, Sidney Crosby’s wingman, has a shooting percentage of over 26% – and has more goals on half as many shots.
Ovie is just 27 years old. Unload him now, to a team that needs some solid offense (hello Philadelphia) and grab some draft picks in return.
Tomorrow: Reason #2: Mrs Ovechkin