Wednesday, April 16, 2014

4 Reasons Not to Trade Alex Ovechkin

For the first time in six seasons, the Washington Capitals missed the playoffs. So obviously, the Caps have to trade away the selfish, cherry-picking, non-team playing, and most of all, Russian Alex Ovechkin.

Since the season ended, speculation has seemingly come out of nowhere that Ovechkin should be traded. However, this makes absolutely zero sense.

Here are 4 reasons why OV should not be traded (you know, 8/2, cause if we lose him, the talent on this team is cut in half...):

1. The Fanbase. DC is famous for fair-weather fans. Other than the Redskins, no other team receives continuous support from the entire DC area. If you're reading this blog, you're probably a die-hard Caps fan like me, and we will always support this team no matter what. But for the majority of the DC area population, take away the one recognizable figure on a team that may now be the 4th-best in the area, and any interest that's left is suddenly gone.

2. The Once-In-A-Generation Player. We are privileged to be able to see one of the greatest players of all time playing in DC. Yes, of all time. OV is 13th all-time in points per game, ahead of players like Jaromir Jagr, Joe Sakic, etc. By the time he retires, OV will definitely be a Top-20-25 player, and maybe even a Top 10. Right now, he's the second best player in the world, and if he has a better team (which I'll get to) around him, he could be spurred to even greater heights.

3. The Season Was Not his Fault. What happened this year cannot be blamed on Alex Ovechkin. First, let me talk about his abysmal plus-minus; is it his fault if his linemates cannot score worth beans when he's on the ice? His two most common linemates, Nick Backstrom and Marcus Johansson, only scored 14 combined even-strength goals, and I'm not sure how much of that was with him on the ice. Despite this, OV totaled 13 even-strength assists. Look, it would take forever to individually address every single beef anybody's ever had with Ovechkin, but suffice to say he did nothing less than he could have this year. He played with his heart on his sleeve, but was careful to say anything to the media. You can't please them all, Alex.

4. The Future. No matter what we get for him, it's highly doubtful to be enough. First the Caps would need enough assets to just replace a legend in Alex Ovechkin, and then would need more assets to fix the numerous holes in the team. It would take at least 3-4 high prospects and first-rounders to replace OV, and then we'd need a top-notch defenseman and some Top-6 help. No player in the league is worth that much right now. Even if the Caps do get this, will it be enough? Will they have enough talent to truly turn the team around? The way this organization's management is right now, no prospects and picks can be considered sure things.

I don't know where all this talk about trading OV came from, but it has to stop right now (we don't want GMGM getting any ideas in his final days here, you know). Still, there is not justification for trading OV, and the Caps will have some dark days ahead if he is dealt.

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