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Olympics dispatch: Writing about Ovechkin

I'm a big fan of the sports (and other) writing of The New Yorker's Nick Paumgarten, and his dispatches from Vancouver have not disappointed. In this report from Sunday's big hockey matchups, Paumgarten put them in a context that neither NBC nor my hockey-playing wife did (I know little of the sport myself). Take a look and see how Cold War tensions endured in the Czech Republic-Russia face-off (hint: Jaromir Jagr's jersey number? 68, as in Prague Spring, year of).

And there's an added bonus for us Washington readers. Our own king of the ice, Alex Ovechkin, makes a cameo in a passage featuring this fairly tasteless metaphor: "The biggest play of the game may have been Alex Ovechkin’s open-ice demolition of Jagr, which led to a quick Russian goal and an arena-wide gasp (it was the hockey equivalent of the collapse of the North Tower)."

By Steve Hendrix  | February 23, 2010; 7:05 AM ET
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