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2022 NHL All-Star Weekend

Kuznetsov On Ovechkin Missing All-Star Weekend: ‘He Was Very Disappointed’

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The Capitals face offseason questions, from Alex Ovechkin and Evgeny Kuznetsov.

Before taking off for Vegas, Washington Capitals center Evgeny Kuznetsov joked that he would do his best to stay separated from Alex Ovechkin at the 2022 NHL All-Star Weekend, as he’d been looking forward to three days without him. That joke backfired, as Ovechkin is missing the festivities while on COVID-19 protocol, and No. 92 took the time on media day to discuss his captain’s absence.

Ovechkin was set to represent the Metropolitan Division and return to the NHL All-Star Game for the first time since 2018. However, on Wednesday before the Capitals’ tilt with Edmonton, Ovechkin tested positive for COVID-19. As a result, he missed the game against Edmonton and turn, couldn’t attend the NHL All-Star Weekend.

“He was very disappointed, I can see. He was talking a lot about this All-Star,” Kuznetsov said. “He wants to come, he likes this city, he likes this type of moments. For him, it’s always big.”

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After the positive test, there were critics who speculated that Ovechkin hadn’t wanted to attend the ASG and that it was a convenient coincidence that he happened to get a positive test. However, this was far from the case, as Ovechkin’s wife, Nastya, had been flying over from Moscow to head to Vegas with Ovechkin and ended up back in Russia after finding out No. 8 was in quarantine. Kuznetsov also confirmed that Ovechkin is a fan of the All-Star Weekend.

“He’s little bit down. Just so you know guys, he does worry about this stuff,” Kuznetsov said. “He’s the guy like this type of days, you know?”

Ovechkin earned his 12th All-Star selection thanks to the best start of his career. The 36-year-old is among the league leaders in scoring with 29 goals and 58 points through 46 games this season.

“Obviously it’s huge honor, huge privilege and it’s gonna be fun.. It’s privilege,” Ovechkin said after his selection. “It doesn’t matter if you voted by fan or the league select you, it’s privilege, it’s representing your team, yourself, and obviously, have fun with the best players out there on the ice,” he added. “It’s pretty cool moment.”

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