Wednesday, July 20, 2005

Ovechkin - Caps Reach Deal

Alexander Ovechkin has cleared the way for himself to play in the NHL this season.
TSN has learned the No. 1 overall pick in the 2004 NHL entry draft has exercised his option to void his contract for this season with Omsk of the Russian Super League. Ovechkin, property of the Washington Capitals, could escape the Russian contract on or before a deadline of July 20 (today).
Sources say Ovechkin informed the Capitals today that he is, in fact, escaping his commitment to Omsk and wants to play for the Capitals in the NHL this season.
Based on the terms of the new CBA, Ovechkin and the Capitals can officially begin negotating a contract on Saturday. It likely won't be much of a negotiation. As a No. 1 overall pick and potential franchise player, the Capitals will likely give Ovechkin everything he's entitled to as a 2004 draft pick.
Ovechkin is eligible to receive slightly more money than the players who will be drafted in 2005, but not as much as he would have received if he and the Capitals had negotiated a contract prior to the beginning of the lockout.

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