Ovechkin headed to Greece this weekend

Washington Capitals Alex Ovechkin takes part in pre-game warm-ups before the start of their NHL...

Washington Capitals Alex Ovechkin takes part in pre-game warm-ups before the start of their NHL pre-season hockey game against the Winnipeg Jets in Belleville, Ontario September 14, 2013. (REUTERS/Fred Thornhill)

The Sports Xchange

, Last Updated: 2:56 PM ET

Alex Ovechkin considered carrying the Olympic torch an offer he could not refuse, and the Russian-born Washington Capitals' star will be away from the team until Monday.

Ovechkin is scheduled to be in Greece for three days, complete his leg of the torch relay on Sunday and return to the Capitals' facility Monday.

He plans to play in the final game of the preseason for the Capitals on Friday before departing for Greece. Washington opens the NHL regular season Tuesday at Chicago.

"I'm extremely humbled and honored to be the first Russian to carry the Olympic Torch," Ovechkin said.

"This is a once in a lifetime opportunity and something I will never forget. I would like to thank the Washington Capitals organization and all of my teammates for their support in enabling me to travel to Greece prior to the regular season."

Many torchbearers will complete a tour through all 83 regions of Russia ahead of the Winter Games in Sochi in February.

 


Videos

Photos