The Russian Machine never breaks.

ISSUE: Alexander Ovechkin is the most exciting athlete in pro sports.

• For all its faults, the NBA has never lacked for watchable talent. But if you've been steadfastly ignoring the NHL, you've been missing out on the most electrifying athlete in sports today. LeBron's great, Kobe's cool, but Alexander Ovechkin is must-see TV. Every game, the Washington Capitals left wing does something spectacular. Literally, every game. The common complaint about watching hockey on television'that it's too hard follow the puck'has been all but negated in the HD era. If you can't keep up now, it's your problem, not the league's. Yeah, the NHL is relegated to the Versus network (and NBC on weekends), but it's still basic cable. Next Ovechkin national TV appearance is March 16 at Atlanta, on Versus. Ovie is well worth your time'and he makes $4 million less than Larry Hughes.

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