Alex Ovechkin has no intention of leaving the Capitals any time soon, but there is another team in which he wants to play for to end his professional career. Ovechkin revealed in a Russian interview with Russian Television International his desire to finish out his playing career in Russia with Dynamo Moscow.
“I really want to come back and end my career at Dynamo Moscow after a certain number of years that I will spend, God willing, in Washington," Ovechkin said based on the translation used by SportsNet.
Ovechkin has only played for two teams in his professional career: the Capitals in the NHL and Dynamo Moscow in the KHL. It has long been suspected that Ovechkin may want to return to Russia to finish his career and now he is openly speaking about it. But, before Capitals fans despair, he also made clear that despite his desire to return to Russia, he has no plans to leave Washington for another team in the NHL.
Ovechkin has one year remaining on his 13-year contract with the Caps and general manager Brian MacLellan has said negotiations are on hold until the team returns to training camp. To have the face of the franchise entering the final year of his contract without a new deal in place is a nervous prospect for fans. But the news that he wants to finish his career back home in Russia should not concern Caps fans as he made clear he has no desire to leave even if he were to get a big-money offer from another team.
“It’s not a question of money," Ovechkin said. "It’s a matter of principle: I played for only two teams – Dynamo and Washington."
Ovechkin scored 48 goals in the 2019-20 season which tied for the league lead earning him a ninth Rocket Richard Trophy. Despite being 35 years old, there is still no sign of him slowing down. Until that happens, there's no real reason to worry about him leaving.
The NHL is the best league in the world and he is not likely to leave while he remains one of the best players in the best league.
Let's face it, Russia will always be there waiting for him when he decides to hang it up in Washington. While he can still compete for the Cup, however, Dynamo Moscow will have to wait, even if that is the dream.
"It is clear, in two, three, four years, maybe five, I will end my career in Washington," Ovechkin said. "I want to end on a beautiful note – to play my last match for Dynamo Moscow."