In the past, Alex Ovechkin has received criticism for his perceived physical fitness and body weight. Those days are now in the past.
Last September, the Capitals captain arrived at training camp a trim 239 pounds. A month later, the rejuvenated Russian machine opened the season with two consecutive hat tricks. He finished the year with a Stanley Cup, the Conn Smythe, and the Rocket Richard trophy for the seventh time.
This season, according to the new team roster, Ovechkin weighs four pounds less than last year.
Players and management mentioned how refreshed Ovechkin looked — even after a summer during which the entire team was supposedly partying the whole time.
“He actually looks a little bit leaner than he has in a while,” Capitals GM Brian MacLellan said. “He looks like he’s in a good place mentally.”
“The shape he came in was tremendous,” Capitals head coach Todd Reirden said. “It’s something we talked about quite a bit…I’m really proud of him for how he showed up the last few days in testing and today’s practice. To go along with that was a big smile, and that always pushes guys to be better when one of your leaders is enjoying coming to the rink.”
Ovechkin’s line-mate, Tom Wilson, added that the Russian machine looked “good and he’s moving well.”
Ovechkin has been working out since late July and even skated at the Florida Panthers practice rink during a stay in his vacation home in Miami. The week before training camp, Ovi was back at MedStar Capitals IcePlex with Evgeny Kuznetsov and his personal trainer, Pavel. He did box steps while holding a weighted barbell over his shoulders.
Days later, Ovechkin was videoed doing squats, which showcased his impressive lower body strength.
Ovechkin was also spotted by a fan doing an outdoor workout in McLean, VA. It looks like he’s taking a page out of Kuzy’s bird celly exercises and is taking flight.
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