Alexander Ovechkin has announced that he will not be partaking in any of the All-Star Weekend events this season.
The Capitals star stated his reason is because he wants to take that week off to rest and rejuvenate himself. He also stated that this additional rest will allow him to perform better in the second half of the season.
The 33-year-old has appeared in all of the Washington Capitals 38 games this season. He also is coming off of a season where he played in all 82 games and captured his first Stanley Cup championship.
Capitals coach Todd Reirden said team will decide closer to all-star break which game Alex Ovechkin will sit out. He has to miss one game for dropping out of NHL All-Star Game.— Tom Gulitti (@TomGulittiNHL) January 2, 2019
Due to the NHL trying to have their best players at these All-Star events, for the past few seasons they have enforced this suspension rule when a player decides to skip the weekend. This is why Ovechkin has been suspended by the league for one game.
The eleven-time All-Star will likely either sit out the Capitals last game before the break on Jan. 23, 2019, or their first game back on Feb. 1, 2019. Which will mean by skipping the All-Star events, he will receive a nine or ten-day break from any NHL activities.
Ovechkin was named as the Metropolitan Division captain, for his performance so far this season. He currently leads the league in goals with 29 and ranks 18th in the league for points.
This announcement means that this could be the start of a regular occurrence for Ovechkin if he continues to make deep runs into the playoffs each season. He is above the age of 30, which means his body doesn't recover as fast as a lot of the younger All-Stars in this league.
So with a week off during the middle of the season, this could not only allow him to perform effectively for the second-half of this season. But, it could also allow him to prolong his career.
Ovechkin could definitely benefit from a week-off instead of participating in the All-Star Weekend. Which could not just benefit him for this season, but every season for the rest of his career.
What This Means
Ovechkin is the key to success for the Capitals. So if taking a week off during the middle of the season is going to help him perform consistently throughout the entire season, then missing the All-Star Weekend events shouldn't be a big deal.
If this experiment is successful for him, then he should definitely consider skipping the All-Star events every season in order for him to be effective all season-long and help his team make the playoffs consistently each season.