Mike Milbury says Capitals star Alex Ovechkin should stop acting like a baby. (FRED THORNHILL/Reuters)
Alex Ovechkin would like a word with NHL referees.
But, apparently, they won’t give him that much.
The Washington Capitals captain thinks on-ice officials are going too far in muzzling his teammates during games based on their reputation.
“Of course some refs don’t like some personalities on our team, but anyway, you have to respect us,” Ovechkin told The Washington Times on Sunday. “We’re emotional, we’re in the game. When we say something bad to linesmen or bad to referees, we can’t give them two minute (penalties) when they yell at me or they yell at coaches or yell at somebody. It’s kind of a position when they have to give us a break.”
One of those personalities is that of centre Mike Ribeiro, who earned his third unsportsmanlike conduct penalty of the season for yapping at the refs in Saturday’s loss to the New York Islanders.
“If we’re over the top in our yelling or screaming, yeah, of course you have to give us two or five or 10, it’s their call,” Ovechkin said. “Not, like, if we say one word to them, like, you’re gonna get two minutes right away and you’re going to sit on the bench and they’re going to score and we say, ‘OK, good job.’ ”
Ovechkin added that even as the team’s captain he has a hard time speaking to officials.