Athletes can be a superstitious bunch. Many baseball players avoid contact with the chalk baselines when going on and coming off the field after an inning, electing to hop over them instead. Some basketball players set out to make a specific number of shots before leaving pregame shootaround. Hockey players can be OCD about taping their stick blades a certain way. Many have superstitions involving food, like Hall of Fame baseball player Wade Boggs who would eat chicken before every game.
The list goes on. There are certainly incredible ones we're unaware of, and some routines are definitely weirder than others. Take, for example, what Washington Capitals players Alex Ovechkin and Andre Burakovsky have going on.
In a Q&A that ran on the NHLPA site, Burakovsky was asked what's the strangest game day superstition he's seen or heard of. His response: "Ovechkin biting me before every game."
Russian Machine Never Breaks provided more on the bromance, which has seen Ovechkin give Burakovsky back rubs and keep him warm during a polar vortex. They also showed us photo evidence of Ovi biting him before a game last season:
We also learned that Burakovsky likes to do some chomping himself:
I thought it was impossible to love Ovechkin more than I already do, but here we are. Just imagine how passionate those bites were during Washington's playoff run last year as the Capitals looked to break their postseason curse and capture their first championship. A fired up Ovechkin, hellbent on winning a Stanley Cup, biting teammates before pivotal playoff games is not a dude I'd want to mess with.
Ovechkin has nothing left to prove. He's won every meaningful award, including MVP three times, is going to eclipse 700-plus career goals by the time he's done, has a Stanley Cup to his name, and is still crushing it, averaging over a point-per game through the first month of the NHL season. He's a legend who provided our social media feeds with the ultimate post-Stanley Cup bender, getting trashed with Lord Stanley's Mug in both the US and Russia throughout the summer after shitting all over his haters in glorious fashion.
He can now add best game day superstition to his résumé.