Despite having a large platform due to his superstar status as Washington Capitals captain and one of the National Hockey League's elite forwards Alex Ovechkin rarely comments on league issues or rules, so when he does make a statement people tend to listen.
It was subtle, but it a recent interview with CSN Mid-Atlantic's Tarik El-Bashir, Ovechkin was asked how he felt about his recent playoff exit, specifically how he felt about a relatively quick exit after such a dominant regular season.
"It's sucks obviously, sometimes you just feel you win Presidents Trophy but you see the schedule in the playoffs is kinda weird."
It would be easy to simply paint him as a sore loser for his comments, but it wasn't poor sportsmanship that prompted Washington Capitals captainAlex Ovechkin to respond the way he did, rather it was clear he felt the format devalued regular season performance.
"Then you play against Pittsburgh, not like Islanders or different teams play against each other and you think why do you need to win the Presidents' Trophy to play against best team?"
What Ovechkin is referring to here is the fact that the Capitals did not get to face the weakest seed due to the NHL's playoff format, as he clearly feels they should have, after advancing in the first round. There's an argument to be made here, giving the team that finishes first in the regular season the best road to the Championship in either conference would add more value to the regular season, although with the NHL's new divisions that change may not be coming anytime soon.