3 Reasons Alexander Ovechkin's Time in Europe Will Make Him Better

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3 Reasons Alexander Ovechkin's Time in Europe Will Make Him Better

As the NHL lockout chugs along—and with significant issues still creating an obstacle to the lockout actually ending (ESPN)—across the pond, hockey is still being played by some of the best players in the world.

One of these players is the captain of the Washington Capitals, Alexander Ovechkin.

Call him Ovi or the Great Eight or whatever you like, there is little question as to who the face of the Capitals has been since 2005.

But have things changed lately? Has one of the greatest players in Caps history lost his touch not just with the team, but with the city?

Weren't Caps fans supposed to be celebrating multiple Stanley Cup championships by now?

Has the only Russian to ever be given a key to the nations' capital truly been replaced by RG3 and Stephen Strasburg as the favorite son for Washingtonians?

It is a topic that ESPN's Sarah Turcotte explored in an article she wrote for ESPN The Magazine's D.C. focused edition.

Whether the love affair D.C. had with Ovechkin is really gone or just on a temporary hiatus, we won't really know until the lockout ends and the NHL resumes business.

In the meantime, Ovechkin has returned to his roots and is playing for Dynamo Moscow of the KHL, the same team he played for prior to coming to the Capitals.

There are a variety of ways to look at this situation. Certainly, the ideal situation would have Ovechkin still Rocking the Red and bringing the Verizon Center to its feet.

That is obviously not going to happen anytime soon. In the meantime, playing in the KHL is the next best thing for Ovechkin.

In fact, his time in Europe should help to make Ovechkin a better player once the lockout ends.

Here are three reasons why.

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