Alexander Ovechkin has body issues

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Alexander Ovechkin has body issues

By Jon Fucile
WickedGoodSports.com

In general, hockey players are like machines. One has to train hard to take the type of beating a hockey player takes night in and night out over the course of a season. Occasionally, once the summer hits you may start to eat a bit more than usual and exercise less which can lead to extra roundness.

Such is the case with Washington Crapitals captain Alex Ovechkin. Ovechkin returned to America looking a little plumper than usual and the internet was on fire with speculation and fat jokes.

Here is what he actually looked like:

But here is what people acted like he looked like:

Sure, he had a bit of a beer gut, but nothing to be too concerned about. He was probably just over celebrating yet another second round exit for the Capitals. However, a summer full of criticism has led to a few problems for Ovechkin and now he is dealing with body issues.

In an exclusive interview with Wicked Good Sports magazine, Washingtons favorite winger opened about his struggle with his weight.

You see all these hockey players on the cover of ESPN and Sports Illustrated and they look so skinny and in shape, said the Capitals star. It just hurts because not everyone can look like that and people like me who carry a little extra weight are ostracized.

As the comments ate away at him inside he began trying to eat away the pain, going on long eating binges and eating everything in sight.

I just couldnt stop. My only friends were Ben and Jerry, the Russian superstar said. Every time someone said something hurtful about my figure I ran to them for comfort. The Keebler Elves helped too.

Ovechkin finally reached his low point one day at the beach. In an effort to get away from all the Tweets, emails and phone calls about his expanding waist line, Ovechkin decided to spend a day sitting at the beach, listening to the sound of the waves and just relaxing but his day was anything but.

My relaxing day quickly turned into a nightmare, Ovechkin told us. All the pretty people were pointing and laughing at me because I was fat. I couldnt take it. I tried to get up and leaveand my chair came with me.

It was at that point that he had finally had enough and decided to do something.

I tried out for the new season of The Biggest Loser, he said. Originally I thought it was for people on really overrated teams that flame out in the playoffs getting together to work out but it turned out to be so much more.

Ovechkin was put through the ringer by a pair of frustrated sisters who quickly whipped him into shape.

They had a lot of free time this summer since they had no celebrating to do and they were in really, really good shape from running away from the Bruins so much, Ovechkin said. They worked me really hard.

Ovechkin eventually won the title of biggest loser en route to losing an astounding 253 pounds and he is now physically, but more importantly mentally, ready for the new season.

I think throughout this whole ordeal Ive learned a lot, Ovechkin told us. Most importantly though Ive learned to just be happy with me and Ive learned that my body is okay just the way it is. Even without any Cups.

Dont worry buddy. Youre beautiful. Youre beautifuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuul.

But not really.

With Thomas drawing attention, Stevens turns to Rozier in big moment

With Thomas drawing attention, Stevens turns to Rozier in big moment

BOSTON – Prior to Saturday’s game, Terry Rozier talked to CSNNE.com about the importance of staying ready always, because “you never know when your name or number is going to be called.”

Like when trailing by three points in the fourth quarter with less than 10 seconds to play?

Yes, Rozier was on the floor in that scenario and the second-year guard delivered when his team needed it.

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But Rozier’s fourth quarter heroics which forced overtime against Portland, did not provide that much-needed jolt that Boston needed as the Blazers managed to fend off the Celtics in overtime, 127-123.

For Rozier’s part, he had 15 points on 6-for-13 shooting.

The 15 points scored for Rozier was the most for him since he tallied 16 in a 30-point Celtics win at Orlando on Dec. 7.

But more than the points, the decision by head coach Brad Stevens to draw up a play for him in that moment, a time when most of what Boston does revolves around the shooting of Isaiah Thomas who has been among the top-3 scorers in the fourth quarter most of this season, was surprising to many.

And at that point in the game, Thomas already had 13 fourth-quarter points.

Stevens confirmed after the game that the last shot in the fourth was indeed for Rozier, but Thomas’ presence on the floor was important to its execution.

“He (Thomas) also draws a lot of attention,” Stevens said. “So I think you just weigh kind of … what kind of shot you’re going to get, depending on who it is.”

Rozier had initially screened for Thomas, and Thomas came back and screened for him.

“I was open as soon as I caught … and I let it fly,” Rozier said. “Coach drew up a play for me and it felt good to see the ball go in.”

Being on the floor at that time, win or lose, was a victory of sorts for Rozier.

He has seen first-hand how quickly the tide can change in the NBA for a young player.

After a strong summer league showing and a solid training camp, Rozier had earned himself a firm spot in the team’s regular rotation.

But a series of not-so-great games coupled with Gerald Green’s breakout night on Christmas Day, led to his playing time since then becoming more sporadic.

Rozier, in an interview with CSNNE.com, acknowledged it hasn’t been easy going from playing regular minutes to not being sure how much court time, if any, he would receive.

But he says the veterans on the team have been good about keeping his spirits up, and one in particular – Avery Bradley – has been especially helpful.

Like Rozier, Bradley’s first couple of years saw his playing time go from non-existent to inconsistent. But Bradley stayed the course and listened to the team’s veterans who continued to tell him that his hard work would pay off sooner or later.

Those same words of wisdom Bradley received in his early days, he passes on to Rozier.

“It’s big,” Rozier told CSNNE.com. “He (Bradley) tells me things like that. I felt I was ready for this (inconsistent minutes) after all that he told me. It’s big to have a guy like him that has been through it all with a championship team, been around this organization for a while; have him talk to you is big. It’s always good. That’s why I stay positive, and be ready.”

Which is part of the reason why Stevens didn’t hesitate to call up a play for the second-year guard despite him being a 33.3 percent shooter from 3-point range this season – that ranks eighth on this team, mind you.

“He’s a really good shooter,” Stevens said of Rozier. “I think with more opportunity that will show itself true, but he made some big ones in the fourth quarter. We went to him a few different times out of time-outs, and felt good about him making that one.”

And to know that Stevens will turn to him not just to spell Thomas or one of the team’s other guards, but to actually make a game-altering play in the final seconds … that’s major.

“It helps tremendously,” said Rozier who added that his confidence is through “the roof. It makes me want to do everything. You know defense, all of that. It’s great, especially to have a guy like Brad trust you."