Photo: Nick Wass (AP)

The Capitals are mostly pretty chill about the perception that they perhaps partied too hard after winning the Stanley Cup, and the fact that their boozy celebrations inspired new rules about the way champions are allowed to handle the Cup. Anyway, that’s the gist of an ESPN report that depicts the players as content that their summer of Cup-standing never really went over the top, or if it did, it was certainly worth it.

“I mean if people say we partied too much, first I’d like to defend ourselves,” [Tom] Wilson said. “Hockey is such a tough sport. Guys truly give it their all to win the Cup. When it comes down to it, guys don’t care about the money in the playoffs — the bonuses and all of that doesn’t matter. It’s about winning a championship with your teammates, and once you do, you get to celebrate with your teammates. We did everything as a group. If one guy made a fool of himself, we weren’t going to let him do that alone. It was all harmless.”

There is at least one perfectly reasonable standard by which the Capitals may be judged to have partied too hard: they apparently fucked the Cup up a little bit, which isn’t an especially reverent way of handling the ultimate prize of their sport. Beyond that, only the most curmudgeonly among us didn’t enjoy the sight of various Capitals getting blasted and compulsively hoisting the Cup in those weeks of delirious celebration. The consequences would mostly be their own: blackouts, bruises, wet clothes, hangovers, and possibly the lingering performance deficits that come from spending a good chunk of the summer wearing a lampshade. But that’s the best part of this report—Ovechkin, at least, seems to have drawn vigor and youth from a sustained consumption of alcohol that would send other, weaker men to an early grave:

Chatter, however, surrounded Ovechkin’s physique. Players and management mentioned how refreshed he looked — even after a summer during which he was supposedly partying the whole time.

“He actually looks a little bit leaner than he has in a while,” MacLellan said. “He looks like he’s in a good place mentally.”

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This is great. If I drink two beers and eat a single handful of popcorn, I wake up the next morning looking and feeling like if you completely filled one of those standup punching bag clowns with cement. Ovechkin spent the month of June stewing his organs in booze, then became a father, and now he’s somehow starting training camp refreshed, well-adjusted, and fucking leaner. Truly he is built exactly for the life he has.