Ovi on the flight home (Photo: @a0gr8)
In another encouraging sign that hockey is imminent, Washington Capitals captain Alex Ovechkin has returned to North America, after a cross-continent flight over the Atlantic during the weekend. As we speak, the Russian machine is participating in the NHL’s media in New York City. Then, according to CSN Washington’s Chuck Gormley, he will return to nation’s capital on Wednesday.
When Ovechkin does arrive, he has a special event planned. According to the Caps, Ovechkin will host a private skate with sixty disabled children and adolescents at Kettler Capitals Iceplex. First, he skates with future pilots at an aviation school and now this? Whatta guy.
Ovechkin will then speak to the local media for the first time this season.
From the Capitals:
Nearly 60 children and adolescents from American Special Hockey Association programs will have the opportunity to skate and learn from the Capitals captain Alex Ovechkin, when he hosts a skating session on Thursday, Sept. 11, at 11:45 a.m. at Kettler Capitals Iceplex in Arlington, Va.
Ovechkin will be made available for one-on-one interviews with local television affiliates during the skating session and in a scrum format for print media following the skate.
For Ovechkin, who turns 29 on Sept. 18, it marks the first of many community initiatives he will support throughout the 2014-15 season, including Ovi’s Crazy 8s. Ovechkin created Ovi’s Crazy 8s in 2006, a program through which he purchases and donates eight Capitals season tickets to Most Valuable Kids, allowing fans who normally wouldn’t have access to tickets the opportunity to attend games. Ovechkin also supports the Make-A-Wish Foundation®, having most recently granted the wish of Washington, D.C., native Ellie Carney.
“This is an amazing opportunity for our players and a day they will never forget,” said Mike Hickey, American Special Hockey Association president. “Like any hockey player, they look up to their heroes, and being on the ice with Alex Ovechkin is a dream come true. This experience is life changing for our players. Very often left out, it is great that they are included in such a great event.”
Created in 2000 for players with development disabilities, ASHA gives people of all ages and abilities a chance to learn and grow by playing hockey. There are currently more than 50 ASHA programs in more than 30 cities throughout the United States. Programs skating with Ovechkin on Sept. 11 include the Baltimore Saints, Montgomery Cheetahs, Nova Cool Cats and Washington Ice Dogs, with participants ranging from ages eight through 18.
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