Anyone who has taken the time to watch a professional soccer game has undoubtedly noticed the many drama queens, flopping on the field as if they had just been shot by a high-powered rifle. They roll around in agony and writhe in pain. Good heavens, it appears their injury may be career ending.
And then they jump up and start running around again.
Clearly, Washington Capitals’ Alexander Ovechkin has watched his share of soccer games. Which made his phony, fake-injury performance – in response to a Nazim Kadri hip check – an impressive one.
Poor Ovie, lay face down, hoping like hell the officials would award his team a 5-minute power play, while also asking Kadri to take the rest of the night off. At one point Ovie appeared to be ready to arise from the dead, lifting his head and surveying the scene, but then made a last minute decision to flop down on his chest and start wiggling around again. With the aid of several teammates, he slowly made his way across the ice, not able to put any weight on the wounded limb at all.
A mere 15 minutes later, Ovechkin returned to a fresh sheet of ice, and lo and behold, it was a miracle of miracles. The leg had not been amputated after all. In fact, Ovie felt so good, he joined the starting five to begin the period, with no signs of a mobility problem at all. He immediately revved up, flew into the Maple Leafs’ zone at full speed and plastered Toronto’s Jake Gardiner into the glass, hoping to create a human pancake.
Of course, this is what Ovechkin does often in big games. He’s aware that NHL referees haven’t called a charging penalty on him in years, despite the fact he runs at people from halfway across the rink, feet still moving upon arrival, and hurls his 240 lb. body into opponents, usually from behind.
Most of his victims take the illegal hit like men. But not Ovie. When karma strikes back and it’s his turn to go down, he turns into a hockey sissy. Which may explain why Sidney Crosby has a collection of Stanley Cup rings, World Cup rings and Olympic gold medals, while Ovechkin has done nothing but choke in the clutch for the better part of a decade.
Now there’s a legitimate reason to roll around in pain.