Alexander Ovechkin officially became a member of the Washington Capitals yesterday when he signed the contract he agreed to last month.
The club's No. 1 overall draft pick in 2004 arrived in Washington, where he met with Capitals majority owner Ted Leonsis and General Manager George McPhee at the club's downtown headquarters. He also put his name on the three-year deal that will pay him as much as $3.9 million if he achieves several lofty performance bonuses.
A left wing who will turn 20 later this month, Ovechkin is arguably the Capitals' best player despite having not played an NHL game. He will be introduced to the media at an MCI Center news conference this morning.
The NHL, meantime, announced that the Capitals will be featured six times this season on Comcast's Outdoor Life Network, the league's new national cable network partner. Washington's OLN schedule is as follows: Nov. 15 vs. Tampa Bay; Dec. 27 vs. Boston; Jan. 23 vs. Boston; March 6 vs. the Islanders; March 14 vs. Buffalo; and April 10 vs. Boston.
No Capitals games, however, will be televised on NBC.
The Capitals also announced the signing of 2004 first-round draft pick Jeff Schultz, who agreed to a three-year contract. Schultz, a 6-foot-6, 212-pound defenseman, spent the past two seasons with Calgary Hitmen of the Western Hockey League.
Schultz's signing means the Capitals have locked up all three of their first-round picks from 2004, including Ovechkin and defenseman Mike Green.
-- Tarik El-Bashir