Washington Capitals captain Alex Ovechkin is a league leader in hits. He got his physical game going early on Saturday night. Eighteen seconds into the contest, he levied his first body check, but it wasn’t against a Flames player. It was on the referee.
As the Capitals began a cycle behind the net, Ovechkin skated full speed to the corner. The ref, unaware of the hard-charging Russian machine, gets blindsided to the ice. After readjusting his helmet, the official got up, no worse for wear.
This isn’t the first time Ovechkin’s accidentally knocked over a ref. In a 2011-12 regular season game against the Hurricanes, Ovechkin checked Tuomo Ruutu. Ruutu’s flying torso knocked over a linesman in a chain reaction.