Who is the Caps' MVP through the first half of the season?


There are a number of Capitals who have had decent years through the first half of the season. Evgeny Kuznetsov is enjoying a bounce-back year after facing trade rumors in the offseason, John Carlson is tied for 8th among all defensemen in points, Tom Wilson is tied for second on the team in goals with 13. But there's no question who the MVP has been to this point. Since I would consider Alex Ovechkin to be the league MVP through the first half of the season, it's pretty obvious who I think the team MVP is.

Ovechkin's 29 goals rank 3rd in the NHL and his 58 points rank 5th, all at the age of 36.

But being the MVP is about more than just stats. While every team has dealt with injuries and coronavirus absences this year, Ovechkin was the primary reason the Caps have been able to stay afloat. Washington has had to deal with one of the oldest rosters in the league, players constantly coming in and out of the lineup, limited games for Nicklas Backstrom and T.J. Oshie, inconsistent goaltending and an abysmal power play. And yet, Washington still sits comfortably in playoff position, four points ahead of Boston for the top wild card spot and 11 points ahead of Detroit who is the first team out.

That doesn't happen without Ovechkin having the type of season he is having.

Ovechkin has played in every single game for Washington this season, he remains one of the top players in the league and he has carried his team through every obstacle during the first half of the season. That's an MVP performance.