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Crosby vs. Ovi: Comparing contracts, rhetoric

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Crosby vs. Ovi: Comparing contracts, rhetoric

Lets face it. Until the day they retire and quite possibly long beyond that -- Sidney Crosby and Alex Ovechkin will be forever linked, compared and contrasted.

And so why not do it now, with the news that Crosby has agreed to a 12-year, 104.4 million contract extension that extends until gulp! 2025?

For comparison purposes, we take you back to Jan. 13, 2008, when Ovechkin agreed to what was then the first NHL contract that exceeded 100 million. Just for fun, lets compare what was said about Ovechkin then and what is being said about Crosby today.

Ovechkin Contract By The Numbers circa 2008Length: 13 years
Value: 124 million
Cap hit: 9.538 million.
No Trade Clause: Begins July 1, 2014 when Ovechkin can list 10 teams he WILL NOT accept a trade to. That list may be modified in September of each year.

Crosby Contract By The Numbers 2012Length: 12 years
Value: 104.4 million
Cap hit: 8.7 million
No Trade Clause: Unavailable, pending Crosbys signature on Sunday.

What the Capitals were saying about Ovechkin
Im a risk taker. And if youre going to make a long-term investment, who else would you do it with? This takes away any of the issues of how committed we are to winning a Cup, how committed we are to keeping a team together. In 10 years the deal might look really attractive. Capitals owner Ted LeonsisWhat Ovechkin was saying about Ovechkin:
Hockey is my life, and money is money. ... If you think about money, you stop playing hockey.

What the Penguins are saying about Crosby:
This is a great day for hockey and tremendous news for the Pittsburgh Penguins and our fans. We are grateful for all that Sidney Crosby has done for our franchise since coming to Pittsburgh in 2005, both on and off the ice, and we look forward to having him in a Penguins uniform for the rest of his career. Penguins co-owners Mario Lemieux and Ron Burkle in a joint statement

Ovechkin By The Numbers career
Regular SeasonGames: 553
Goals: 339Assists: 340
Points: 679

PlayoffsGames: 51
Goals: 30
Assists: 29
Points: 59
Stanley Cups: 0

Crosby By The Numbers careerRegular SeasonGames: 434
Goals: 223
Assists: 386
Points: 609

PlayoffsGames: 68
Goals: 33
Assists: 57
Points: 90
Stanley Cups: 1

So let's stir the debate again. If you had 100 mill, who would you give it to, Ovi or Sid?

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D.C. artist turns her love for the Washington Capitals into works of art

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@tkopaintings on Twitter

D.C. artist turns her love for the Washington Capitals into works of art

Local artist Taylor Kampa has taken her love for the Washington Capitals and turned it into works of art. 

You can find paintings done by Kampa of Alex Ovechkin, Tom Wilson, Nicklas Backstrom, T.J. Oshie, John Carlson and Braden Holtby on display at Circa Chinatown – a restaurant neighboring Capital One Arena – along with other D.C. celebrities.

A professional artist for the last decade, Kampa told NHL.com that the pictures were "passion projects," and took about eight hours to finish. She became a fan of the Caps after she began dating her now-husband back in 2009.

Her work has even caught the eye of The Great Eight. After posting a video to Instagram of her painting Ovechkin hoisting the Stanley Cup, the Conn Smythe Trophy winner liked and commented on it. 

"I almost died," Kampa said.

"It has been amazing sharing something that I am excited about that resonates with the people in my city," Kampa said. "I've been painting these portraits for a long time, so it's awesome to have them seen by so many people."

Kampa will also create paintings for the Capitals foundation's annual Casino Night fundraiser next year. 

MORE CAPS NEWS: 

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Key Caps questions: Who will play center on the fourth line?

Key Caps questions: Who will play center on the fourth line?

The dog days of summer are officially here, but it's never too hot to talk some hockey.

Capitals correspondent JJ Regan is here to help you through the offseason doldrums as he discusses key questions facing the Caps for the upcoming season as Washington prepares to defend its title for the first time in franchise history.

Today's question: Who will be the team's primary fourth line center?

With the departure of Jay Beagle, there is a spot open at center on the fourth line. There appears on the roster to be three clear candidates to fill that position: Chandler Stephenson, Travis Boyd and Nic Dowd.

To find out why you should cross Stephenson’s name off the list, you should read yesterday's Key Caps Question about whether or not Stephenson is a wing or a center. To summarize, Washington sees Stephenson as more of a wing which explains why they both re-signed Boyd and brought in Dowd.

So who will it be between those two?

Both players seem to fit the mold as effective centers in the AHL where they were both productive. Dowd has an edge in NHL experience with 131 NHL games as compared to Boyd’s eight.

But Barry Trotz clearly had faith in Boyd at center which is why we saw him fill in on the top line on March 18 in Philadelphia. Boyd rewarded that faith with a spin pass to Alex Ovechkin for an assist, his first career point.

Trotz is now gone and Todd Reirden is in charge, but there is at least a level of familiarity there with the coaching staff and Boyd, more so than with Dowd who is new to the organization.

Second, the Caps may have tipped their hand a bit when you compare the two contracts. Center is an important position and Brian MacLellan has frequently referenced the team’s strength in center depth as a major reason for their Cup run.

Both Boyd and Dowd were signed over the offseason. Both contracts are one-way, suggesting both will be in the NHL, but Boyd’s cap hit is $800,000 while Dowd’s is $650,000. Of course, that will not matter when the players get on the ice. If Dowd outplays Boyd, he will start over him. Plus, the market ultimately dictates price. Even if the Caps wanted Dowd for their top line, if you can get him for $650k, you sign him for $650k.

Considering how important a position center is, however, even on the fourth line, it seems telling that the team was willing to give Boyd, a player with eight games of experience to his name, $800k while Dowd was signed for the minimum. That seems to suggest the Caps at least foresee Boyd having a bigger role which, for two players penciled in for the fourth line, would mean playing him at center.

Other key Caps questions: