The Washington Capitals forward and Russian hockey star Alexander Ovechkin replaced his hockey uniform for mourning suit.
On 84th year of his life Nikolai Mikhailovich Kabaev, grandfather of a world champion, has passed away. It was he who raised Sasha when he was very young and just began to make his first steps in hockey. It was his gift to Alex, a stick from [Alexander] Maltsev, that Ovechkin still considers priceless.
A few weeks ago the father of Tatiana Ovechkina got to the hospital and only last Saturday Nikolai's health became worse. Ovechkin, as a good grandson, drop everything and flew from the U.S. to Moscow, but Sasha was not fortunate enough to keep a company with his sick grandfather for long. Grandfather died virtually in his hands. The Washington Capitals management gave Ovechkin time to heal after the loss of his loved one, and only after that return to the ice.
gazeta.ru has just one statement "Just to remind you that [Ovechkin] was allowed to to come back home because of the death of his grandfather..."
Nothing in Sport-Express, SovSport or anywhere else... Could it be a mistake by life.ru? I mean could it be that they wrote an obituary beforehand and accidentally posted it? Just like NHL.COM was selling Ovechkin's MVP t-shirts before he actually was announced as MVP?
But if it is true Ovechkin might miss another game on Tuesday in Ottawa...
livetv.ru / direct translation of the Buffalo - Washington game had the following BEFORE the game with the Sabres:
After the death of Alexander's grandfather, with whom he was so close, the team's management treated the grief with understanding and gave their leader a "timeout". Ovechkin will likely take bereavement leave all next week and will be able to rejoin the team not earlier than in the game against Tampa Bay on Monday, November 10.
They gave a timeout, but Boudreau doesn't know about it? Capitals Insider reported this today after practice: "Ovechkin is expected to be here today, Boudreau confirmed again, and should on the ice tomorrow morning at 10:30."
Here comes the post from Ted Leonsis at 5:07PM:
Come back Alex. We miss you. :-)
At 5:07PM today Ted doesn't say anything about Ovechkin's grandpa... You decide...
Capitals Insider, Nov. 2, 2008; 8:50 PM ET
Alex Ovechkin has returned from Russia and is back in the Washington area, according to a text message I just received from his business manager, Konstantin Selinevich. I don't have any other details, but I imagine that I'll get an update at tomorrow's practice.
Update Nov. 3, 2008:
So far nobody confirmed the obituary published by LIFE.RU. We'll know for sure in a few hours when Alex Ovechkin will come to a morning skate. But all indications are that it was a fake. My opinion about Russian press hit a new low. Believe me I see a lot of crap out there that I just skip. If I see something fishy I ignore it. But I could never imagine someone could write a fake obituary, it's not a some rumor to play with, it's a tragedy.
By Corey Masisak, TWT, Nov. 3, 2008:
UPDATE: Ovechkin was very upbeat during his interview with the media. He was very happy he had a chance to spend some time with his grandfather, who has not passed away -- contrary to a report from a Russian website.
Please don't kill a messenger, I was just reporting. As I said, I could never imagine someone would play with posting fake obituaries. And I'll never post ANYTHING again from LIFE.RU.
Update (09/29/2009): Google reported that some images from life.ru are infected with malware...