Alex Ovechkin won't be going to Ottawa. The Washington Capitals captain will skip the weekend's NHL All-Star Game following his suspension from the next three regular season games. The suspension, handed down Monday evening, will run through the All-Star Break.
Caps general manager George McPhee shared the news with the media assembled in Washington, saying that Ovechkin "isn't comfortable" going to the game as a suspended player.
The refusal to attend the game may in fact be a protest of the three-game suspension, which Ovechkin and the Capitals organization, including owner Ted Leonsis, did not agree with. But if it indeed is a protest, Ovechkin won't say as much.
There's no indication that he'll be fined for refusing to attend the game.In 2009, Nicklas Lidstrom and Pavel Datsyuk were fined for staying home to rest, but Lidstrom and Teemu Selanne are doing so this year and haven't been fined.
Ovechkin's replacement has not be named, but conventional wisdom (and common sense) suggests it will be Pittsburgh Penguins forward James Neal.