Ovechkin Nets a Big Goal: Wooing a Russian Beauty

By Amy Argetsinger and Roxanne Roberts
Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Who'd figure Alexander Ovechkin for the online dating type? But apparently they don't make 'em here like they do back home: The Capitals' strapping superstar met his new girlfriend, a Moscow college student, on the Internet.

There she was at Caps practice yesterday -- a 20-something named Katja, and described by one spy as "skinny, tan, blond, hot, Russian." Two weeks ago, she flew here for the first date, and they've been together ever since. Ovechkin, 22, declined to discuss the relationship -- but happily, Katja dished to a Russian newspaper.

According to her interview with SovSport, the two met online last fall after she clicked on his profile on Odnoklassniki, a Russian equivalent of Classmates.com or Facebook, on which they were linked by a mutual friend. Ovechkin saw that she had visited his profile and wrote to her -- but she refused to believe it was the real Ovechkin until he gave an interview to SovSport in which he said "hello to SPY," her online name.

"I still was cautious," she told the paper. "[He] used such beautiful words and spoke about such serious things! But he only saw my photos!" He won her over with phone calls, teddy bears, roses. "He'd send me a [text message] 10 minutes before the start of the game, and even in between during the breaks, [saying] 'Thinking of you' or 'Honey, I scored this goal in your honor.' "

Things have apparently been going swimmingly since she arrived in D.C. on Feb. 7: "Sasha is a very romantic person. . . . They say sports stars are arrogant, difficult people. Not Ovechkin! It's not how he was raised."

This Just In . . .

Paul McCartney and Heather Mills spent six days in a closed courtroom, and now a London judge will decide how many millions the former Beatle has to fork over to his soon-to-be-ex. The ruling could take up to a month; the divorce settlement is binding unless there's an appeal -- which would spill all the couple's dirty laundry in public.

Britney Spears still can't see her kids. In a hearing yesterday, a Los Angeles judge refused to give any visitation rights to the pop singer, who hasn't seen the boys since Jan. 3; Spears's ex, Kevin Federline, is working with her new custody lawyer to find terms the court will approve.

Hey, Isn't That . . . ?

A slender Star Jones brunching at the Market Inn on Sunday. The former "View" co-host, starring in an African American version of "The Vagina Monologues" at the Lincoln Theatre, arrived at the Southwest Washington restaurant looking "very N.Y.C." (knee-length black dress) and ate with five friends in a corner of the back room.


"He's definitely confusing to everyone who really hates America for hating Muslims, because [with] a name like Obama and [his being] a black man, they're probably going to go, 'Oh, wait a minute -- what?' . . . He definitely has convinced people that he stands for change and for hope, and I can't wait to see what he stands for."

-- Susan Sarandon, announcing her support of Barack Obama on "Tavis Smiley" last week, now that favorite John Edwards has dropped out. (Reminder: Barack Obama is not Muslim.)

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