Adam Oates calls out Alex Ovechkin for lack of effort

Alex Ovechkin of the Washington Capitals is tripped up during the first period against the Edmonton...

Alex Ovechkin of the Washington Capitals is tripped up during the first period against the Edmonton Oilers at the Verizon Center on October 14, 2013. (Greg Fiume/Getty Images/AFP)

QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 6:22 PM ET

Alex Ovechkin got burned, and Adam Oates got fired up.

The Washington Capitals coach called out his superstar after being snuffed Tuesday night, 5-0 by the Dallas Stars. In particular, Oates questioned Ovechkin’s commitment to defence, citing the Russian's efforts on a third-period play that resulted in the fourth goal.

“Ovi quit on the play coming back,” Oates told reporters, saying Stars goal-scorer Ray Whitney “forced (the play) down the ice and just goes to show you you’ve got to hustle the entire time, the whole entire time.”

After a lacklustre forecheck by Ovechkin, Dallas moved the play up ice for a two-on-three rush. Ovechkin coasted through the neutral zone before Whitney blew past him for the scoring chance.

The Caps are two points out of the final wild card spot in the Eastern Conference -- held by the Columbus Blue Jackets -- with 81 points and six games to play.

In their way are the Toronto Maple Leafs with 82 points and five games left.


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