Russian superstars Alex Ovechkin and Evgeny Kuznetsov have combined for eight goals and 14 points through the first five games of the season.
But that doesn’t mean everything has been borscht and sour cream. When you’re a brilliant and passionate hockey player who has a particularly nuanced view of how to play the sport well, there will be arguments. And Saturday night during the Capitals’ 4-2 loss to the Leafs, Kuznetsov and Ovechkin got in a heated discussion on the bench.
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The argument, according to Hockey Night In Canada, occurred after a play in which Evgeny Kuznetsov had four shot attempts during the same offensive rush. It was an impressive individual effort, but Kuzy missed a trailing Ovechkin coming down the high slot.
Take a closer look at Ovechkin. The Russian machine had his stick on the ice calling for the puck. After Kuzy gathered in the rebound and started cycling, Ovechkin appeared to want the puck again.
When the two got back to the bench, they chatted and things got very animated. Kuzy even stood up and started waving his hands around.
Boys will be boys though, and they made up quickly. Ovechkin dabbed Kuzy encouragingly in the head as if to say “let’s go get ’em this time, comrade.”
Former 40-goal scorer and HNIC analyst Craig Simpson first noticed the argument during Hockey Night In Canada’s telecast.
“One of the things being a teammate, at times these are emotional times,” Simpson said. “Two talented guys. Who’s going to take the puck now that it’s Kuznetsov coming in, almost got a chance. Maybe Ovechkin was going ‘Didn’t you see me? I was open on my off side.’ You can see the heated discussion and then afterwards a little tap tap on the head and a chuckle. You’re always going to see that at times. Emotions run hard. Two really creative guys who, as you know, Jim. There are not enough pucks out there for everybody. There’s only one and not everybody can have it.”
“Brett Connolly was saying the other day when he was playing on that line, he learned how to play with those guys,” Jim Hughson said. “He said, ‘When you get the puck, you make sure you’re ready to give it to Ovi when he wants it. And when Kuznetsov’s got it, you get ready to get the puck.”
“And you get ready to talk about at the bench too,” Simpson joked.
Ovi and Kuzy, please never change.
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