Washington Capitals forward Alex Ovechkin has been fined $5,000, the maximum allowable under the NHL’s CBA, for spearing Boston Bruins forward Trent Frederic.
With six minutes remaining in what became a 2-1 Washington OT win, Ovechkin speared Frederic in, shall we say, a sensitive spot. You can see by the picture above, it wasn’t a gentle cup check, but Ovechkin got some flex in the shaft, and Frederic understandably went down quickly.
The penalty seems a little light given Ovechkin’s antics during the game, and the potential to affect generations of Frederic’s, doesn’t it? Earlier in the game, Frederic tried to fight Ovechkin and dropped his gloves, but Ovechkin demured. No penalty was called, but Ovechkin certainly got two for spearing.
We’re just going to ignore all of the possible puns here.
In January, Ovechkin was placed on the NHL protocol list and held out of several games after he and several teammates gathered in a hotel room after a game in Pittsburgh. Goalie Ilya Samsonov later tested positive, suffered effects from the virus, and only returned to the NHL four days ago.
Editor’s Note: The initial version of the story incorrectly stated Samsonov had not yet returned to the NHL.
This season, Alex Ovechkin has continued his chase of the NHL’s all-time goal lead. He has seven goals and 10 assists in 18 games.
Frederic, of course, is an emerging power forward whose name has recently appeared in NHL trade rumors. He has three points (1g, 2a) in 20 games this season. Frederic’s physical streak and take-no-prisoners play were perfectly evident as he dogged Ovechkin around the TD Garden.
Trent Frederic won the battle on Wednesday night, but he paid the price for it. So, too, will Ovechkin.
Also on Wednesday, long-time Bruins captain Zdeno Chara appeared to fight back tears as the Boston Bruins welcomed “Z” back with a touching tribute.
The Bruins and Capitals go again on Thursday night. All puns, unlike Ovechkin’s stick, will remain above the belt.