Alex Ovechkin has no plans of leaving the team that drafted him 17 years ago.

The captain of the Washington Capitals announced that he believes he will reach a new contract with the team soon. Ovechkin is set to become an unrestricted free agent this summer, as his previous contract with the Capitals, for 13 years and $124 million ends this season. Ovechkin has been in conversations with team owner Ted Leonsis as well as general manager Brian MacLellan, and believes that a deal is imminent.

The Capitals were just eliminated from the NHL Playoffs in the first round on Sunday, when the franchise lost to the Boston Bruins by a score of 3-1, losing the series 4-1. This marks the third consecutive year that the Capitals have lost in the first round of the playoffs, a decline from their Stanley Cup championship in 2018. This season also marks the first time in his career that Ovechkin scored fewer than 30 goals, though the NHL did only play a 56-game regular season.

Ovechkin also faced a number of injuries throughout the season, including a leg injury just before the start of the playoffs which will prevent him from joining Team Russia at the IIHF World Championships in Latvia. Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, Ovechkin was asking for around $12.5 million per year, which would match the most expensive contract in the league, held by Edminton’s Conor McDavid. Nevertheless, Leonsis has made it clear that they have every intention of resigning Ovechkin, regardless of the length of contract he desires. “Alex knows that if he plays five more years, 10 more years, whatever it is, we’ve got his back,” Leonsis said. “Our commitment to him is to continue to have great teams. We’ll spend to the cap; we’ll try to win championships. And that’s what he’s focused on, because that will be his legacy.”


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