Here's another interview by Regina Sevostianova, radio Mayak. Half of it has already been published here as an interview with radio Mayak. And then there are endless questions about KHL compared to NHL, world championships and Vancouver Olympics. Just like Ovi said in one of those interviews this summer, he might become a reporter after he finishes his career because he knows all the questions. So I cut all the repetitive stuff and here are some excerpts:
The toothless smile of team Russia and Washington Capitls leader has long become his business card. And our conversation with Alexander started with the question of whether he will remain faithful to his image.
Have you made a decision not to insert the tooth implant?
And what's the point? It can get knocked out again anyway. Another trip to the doctor, I don't want it. If I could I'd enjoy to have all my teeth in place. But now I only put it in for a night [when I go to bed].
For many you probably are a role model. Aren't you afraid that you'll make your toothless smile stylish?
Do you think people will intentionally knock their teeth out? Nah. I don't think it would be a good example. It's just that almost all hockey players have their teeth missing.
Do you care what you look like?
Even though you have a line of sportswear under your name?
So it's a sportswear. If there are certain possibilities, why reject them? As for any image-makers, let them dye the hair to models. I am just an athlete.
Of course, for the Russians you first of all the leader of the Russian team.
In fact, you can't win it alone. We have the organization that is doing everything to ensure that there will be the result. And this is most important.
For you personally are the games against Canada the most principled, compared to the other competitors?
Of course. This is like a dessert after a good dinner, cherry on the cake. Russia vs Canada is the most important match-up for all; for us and for our fans.
Some opponents of the new unified Dynamo team say, "if Ovechkin is such Dynamo fan, let him come and hold a hockey clinic for the kids". Are you ready to do this?
Yes, we will be doing it in September, a hockey clinic for Dynamo junior hockey school. It's not even a clinic, I always do that. I go out and skate with the kids. If they have something to ask, I answer them and show. I do not think it makes sense to call it some special hockey clinic.
Well, why not? Alexei Kovalev is doing for several years, he travels to the cities and holds the hockey clinics.
That's Kovalev, this is his school. I don't have one yet.
The other day you said that your father set your shot. Maybe you should bring your father to work with kids?
(Smiles) I think he doesn't need to work now. Maybe when he'll have grandchildren.
Are you planning it soon?
It's a secret (laughs).
The latest tabloid gossip is about your break with Valeria Sokolova.
Yes, it is spread by the people who don't know anything. They write anything, whatever they decide.
And are you reading all this?
I can laugh probably. Although, of course, it is unpleasant. They write that I'm so-and-so, that I behave incorrectly, and my girlfriend is not what she should be. It's a jealousy. And it is very ugly on their part to do so.
What about your girlfriend, is it difficult for her to react? After all, she doesn't have the experience [to deal with media] that you have.
Well, all you can do is to ignore them. If you respond to everything that is written it can drive you crazy. You can't do much about it.
Do you read a lot about yourself that is not true?
Go on Internet. If you see "Alexander Ovechkin" it all can become clear for you at once. A lot of lies are spreading out there.
Is Ovechkin in public very different from the real Ovechkin?
No. And why should he be different?
And why, on the other hand, to demonstrate who you are? There must be some protective mechanisms.
Of course, they are always present. But I don't have such things that I show to someone in public and then come home and water the flowers. No, you must always be yourself.
Do you have a PR manager? You lately have become one of the most popular stars in the tabloids.
I repeat, I don't need one. If I need to do something, I have enough friends who can help me. And the tabloids exists because some certain dudes reads it.
What interesting did you do this summer?
The summer turned out great, eventful. Some big events and some bad. But I'm satisfied.
Where did you survive the smog?
Here, in Moscow. It was hard. But what can you do? I was like anybody else.
Have you ever thought what will you do after hockey?
Right now I do not want to do anything besides hockey. I want to play and not to think about anything else.
Are you ready to play till you'll be 47?
How would you compare the two capitals where you live?
Very different. Moscow is more crazy, Washington quieter. I like to be in the summer in Moscow and during the season in Washington.
Where do you want to live in the future?
When I will have the family, children, then I decide.
But do you share the opinion of Kovalchuk, who said, "I have three children, and it's better for them to live in America"?
I think this is the right choice. Because over there it's more secure, more peaceful for children. But again; you never know how it can all turn around in this life.
The "Winter Classic" will be a special event in the next season.
Yes, it would be a great experience. You come out on the open stadium and there are 90 thousand spectators. And all are squealing, yelling. It will be cool!
What will you do to stay warm in the open stadium?
And what can you do?
I've heard soccer players smear with vaseline.
I am not going to use vaseline for sure! (Laughs.)
You said that you didn't think about the national team for now. But do you see the next World Cup tournament to be important?
I've never said that I don't care about the national team. But just now I have the main goal, to win the Stanley Cup. I went to America to realize my dream, to play in the strongest league and to become one of the best hockey players in the world. Here I didn't see the prospects for my career advancement. That is, I could have stayed the same Ovechkin, like when I was 16-18 years old. And then I wouldn't give the interviews now, I would be "one of". I think we made the right move with my family by selecting Washington. We are happy about that.
Did the emergence of the KHL changed this balance?
It is too early to talk about it. Yes, the league develops. But so far it can be compared to the NHL only on financial terms. And then only because there's no salary cap. That is, formally there is, but we all know how everything takes place in Russia. So what can I say? Look at St. Petersburg. So many stars in the same team! I don't think they all fit under the salary cap.
Could you possibly exchange the NHL for money?
If I could, I would be here now. I had such offer. When Michael Golovkov was the president of Dynamo he said, "Sasha, we are happy to take you to the team." But I'm in the NHL.
Well, how things have changed. I think Alex is ready to come back to Washington. There's no place like home. :-)