Via Puck Daddy, some thoughts the Czar shared in an interview with Sovetsky Sport:
Not long ago Washington played Pittsburgh. And Alex Ovechkin showed a sign to Crosby that might have meant less talk. Did he learn it from you? I remember that when [during one game] Crosby was given a penalty and you scored a goal, you pointed at him with your glove, and that gesture became famous in Atlanta.
KOVALCHUK: "These are emotions. Ovechkin did everything right. [You] have to play hockey. Show on the ice what you are capable of. And the weak talk a lot. Ovechkin proved everything - scored a goal and Washington won. He had a full right to his gesture."
Crosby said that Ovechkin is a dirty player...
KOVALCHUK: "Then no one at all should play hockey! The rules in the NHL after the lockout changed considerably. Let Crosby see how [players] played in the league before. Ovechkin's style is emotional, clean hockey. That's why he is the best player in the NHL right now."
But the league in [its] promotions puts emphasis on Crosby.
KOVALCHUK: "He is local. Here a [local] player is needed to become the face of the NHL. A Russian cannot be the face of a North American league! But Ovechkin, in all characteristics, is way stronger than Crosby. I am not 'rediscovering America' -- a lot of people have mentioned so. Crosby is a great player. But he has a long way to go to Ovechkin. If I were to pick players for my fantasy team, I would definitely pick Alex. We are friends. We have similar characters, a lot of common interests. I like Ovechkin not only as a hockey player. He is closer to me in spirit."
Oh, Ovechkin and Kovalchuk and Semin. Snipers with the puck, snipers with their words.
UPDATE: The Crosby Cultists respond in the Puck Daddy comments section:
Good players get it done when it counts the most.
Crosby has 32 points in 25 playoff games.
Kovalchuck has 2 in 4 playoff games.
Way to get [profane] done Kovy.
Know what else is funny? Kovalchuck has had 87 points in 2 seasons and is on course right now for 87 points this season, again. I think someone has some Crosby jealousy...
What an intelligent observation. Moving on...
I love sid hes my fav player and so is malkin and i hate ovechkin and people say hes a crybaby 4 talkin to the refs HES THE CAPTION what do u exspect
That speaks for itself, I think.
I think this was another case of mistranslation...
Dmitry: "So, that ugly Canadian bastard said your boyfriend is a dirty player. Do you agree?"
Kovalchuk: "I love Ovie. He is passionate and emotional. We will make babies soon. He is better than cry-baby boy."
Dmitry: "But Crosby is the poster child! You see his misty-eyed image everywhere."
Kovalchuk: "OVIE IS BETTER!! HE IS CLOSE TO MY SPIRIT AND IN MY FANTASIES!!"
Get it? Because all Russians are fags, eh? I honestly think this comment offers a glimpse of the ugly impulse behind a lot of the Crosby-mania in certain quarters. I detect some Canadian anxiety and resentment here, a fear that they're losing control of "their" sport, not at all unlike Americans who have apocalyptic fears about waves of Mexican immigrants and the exotic President.
Really, I don't want to pile on Crosby. He's a great player and seems like a nice enough kid. I just think it's time people admitted a large part of his "Face of the NHL" status has more to do with Canadian nationalism/xenophobia than anything else.
Yeah I said it.