Five members of the Washington Capitals were selected to represent their countries at the 2014 Winter Games in Sochi, Russia!
Washington Capitals captain Alex Ovechkin, 28, will represent Russia in his third Winter Games. The 6’3”, 235-pound forward earned all-tournament honors at the 2006 Winter Games in Torino, Italy, and tallied four points (two goals, two assists) in four games at the 2010 Winter Games in Vancouver, B.C.
The son of a two-time women’s basketball gold medalist with the USSR, Ovechkin has represented Russia in three World Junior Championships (2003, 2004, 2005), nine World Championships (2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013) and the World Cup of Hockey (2004). In his two previous Winter Games appearances, Ovechkin has registered nine points (seven goals, two assists) in 12 games.
The Moscow native scored his 400th NHL goal on Dec. 20 against Carolina to become the sixth fastest player in NHL history to reach that milestone. Since entering the NHL in 2005-06, Ovechkin leads all players in goals, points, power-play goals, power-play points and game-winning goals.
Defenseman John Carlson, 23, will represent Team USA in his first Winter Games appearance. The 6’3”, 212-pound defenseman is from Natick, Massachusetts. In the last two seasons, Carlson is tied for second in goals (16) among NHL defensemen born in the United States.
Carlson scored the overtime, game-winning goal to help the United States win the gold medal at the 2010 World Junior Championship (WJC) against Canada. He posted three goals and four assists in seven tournament games as an alternate captain and was named to the WJC All-Star Team
Carlson was originally drafted by Washington in the first round, 27th overall, in the 2008 NHL Entry Draft.
Washington Capitals center Nicklas Backstrom, 26, will represent Sweden in his second Winter Games appearance. The 6’1”, 208-pound center represented Sweden at the 2010 Winter Games in Vancouver, B.C., registering six points (one goal, five assists) in four games. The Gavle, Sweden, native has represented his country in six major international events, participating in three World Championships (2007, 2008, 2012), two World Junior Championships (2006, 2007), and the 2010 Winter Games.
Since Backstrom entered the NHL in 2007-08, only three players have collected more assists (Henrik Sedin, Joe Thornton, Martin St. Louis). In addition, Backstrom leads all Swedish born players in points this season.
Left wing Marcus Johansson, 23 will be making his first Olympic appearance and will join Capitals teammate Nicklas Backstrom on the Swedish Olympic team. Johansson represented Sweden at the 2009 and 2010 World Junior Championships and was captain of the Swedish team in 2010. In 11 career games at the World Junior Championship, Johansson recorded three goals and five assists.
The 6'1", 204-pound left wing won a silver medal with Sweden in 2009 and a bronze medal in 2010. Johansson has played in 58 games with the Capitals this season, registering seven goals and 29 assists. The Landskrona, Sweden, native has tallied 131 points (40 goals, 91 assists) in 241 career NHL games.
Washington Capitals left wing Martin Erat, 32, will represent the Czech Republic in his third Winter Games. The 6’0”, 202-pound left wing won a bronze medal with the Czech Republic at the 2006 Winter Games in Torino, Italy, recording two points (one goal, one assist) in eight games. Erat scored a goal in the bronze medal game.
The Trebic, Czech Republic, native earned one assist in five games at the 2010 Winter Games in Vancouver. Erat has represented the Czech Republic in one World Junior Championship (2001) and three World Championships (2006, 2008, 2012).