Coach won't rein on 8's parade

DEREK VAN DIEST, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 12:41 PM ET

Bruce Boudreau gets to watch the most dynamic player in the game on a daily basis.

And for the Washington Capitals head coach, there aren't a lot of days where Alex Ovechkin is not on his game.

"Parts of his game are always on," said Boudreau. "It's just like any other player, you can't be a perfect player every night. Teams are looking to shut him down all the time and it's amazing he can do what he does when every team's best line and best defence is on him all the time. It's a difficult thing that he has to fight through every day."

Since taking over the Capitals bench early into the 2007-2008 campaign, Boudreau has seen Ovechkin get to a new level.

"When I think of Alex, I don't think of plays, I think of the bigger than life enthusiastic player that he is," Boudreau said. "He just loves to play. He's not corporate. He does everything that feels good to him and makes no bones about it, from wanting to play in the Olympics to the clothes he wears, everything.

"He's a personable young man. He's the most engaging young guy and he'll listen to coaches -- or pretends to listen anyway -- goes out, and for the most part, has every player on the other team watching him and he still finds a way to score 50 to 60 goals every year."

Ovechkin's personality is often as dynamic as his talent, but Boudreau has no intention of reigning in his superstar.

"I wouldn't want to rein in that enthusiasm," he said. "Any of us that is old enough to have been able to watch Bobby Orr, would you want Bobby Orr to be somebody other than who he was?

"I still think he was the greatest player in the history because of the way he played and who he was."


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