To come back the following season cut, chiseled, and ready to wax the opposition.
Turns out, he wasn't the only one with this idea in mind.
Madame Tussauds, the famed wax sculpture museum, announced earlier this week that it would be unveiling a wax likeness of the Washington Capitals captain at its Washington, D.C. location.
Interestingly, he's just the second NHLer to be so honored, following in the wax drippings of the Great One himself, Wayne Gretzky.
Notice anyone missing on that list?
The same guy who's been MIA from the NHL since the New Year?
We're talking Sidney Crosby, and while the Caps captain was being captured in wax, his Pittsburgh counterpart and foil for the title of the NHL's best and most talked-about performer remains captured in a fog.
NHL season previews
PHT: Breakdown of all 30 teams as the chase for the Cup begins again.
With Crosby's regaining of his form remaining shrouded in mystery, it makes a return to form by Ovechkin mandatory — for the Capitals, to be contenders, and for the NHL to increase its relevance.
“It's time for Alex Ovechkin, one of the great players in the game, and one of the great hard workers in the game, to work with the intelligence that's necessary to be effective,” said NBC Sports analyst Mike Milbury. “To play within the system that the coaches are outlining.”
Certainly, he'll need to be significantly better than he was last season. Ovechkin's 85-point output was the lowest of his six-season NHL career. After scoring at least 50 goals in each of the three previous seasons, including 65 during the 2007-08 campaign, Ovechkin lit the red lamp on a meager 32 occasions during 2010-11.
For the first time in his career, Ovechkin was nowhere to be found when the NHL doled out its season-ending awards.
The man who will be asked to carry the National Hockey League on his shoulders this season seems to understand and accept the load he'll be required to take on, both with the Capitals, and the league as a whole. He worked tirelessly this summer with Capitals strength and conditioning coach Mike Nemish, shedding nine pounds from his frame. Before training camp even opened, Ovechkin took the ice with Washington's prospects at rookie camp, setting a business-like tone for the season.
The pressure is on, and Ovechkin intends to thrive in the spotlight.
“It's all about me,” Ovechkin said. “If I have a chance to score goals, I have to score it. If I didn't score it, people are going to say, 'Okay, he's not scoring. He's not that good anymore' And if I start scoring again like that, I'm going to make a point streak like 10 games, everything's going to be back and I'm not worried about it.”
Curiously, the newest endorsement deal garnered via Ovechkin's quirky personality and gap-toothed smile is with the candy bar Mr. Big, the same chocolate treat that Gretzky stumped for during his heyday.
Appropriate indeed, for if the NHL is to get bigger, Ovechkin must also be its Mr. Big.
The comparisons between Ovechkin, the top pick in the 2004 NHL entry draft, and Crosby, the first overall selection in 2005, were inevitable from the get-go, driven even more by the fact that both men broke into the NHL until the 2005-06 season, due to the lockout the scuttled the 2004-05 campaign.
In a battle of personalities, the effervescent Ovechkin is the clear-cut winner over the more stoic, keep-to-himself Crosby.
“He wants to win, too and he'll do other things, like blocking shots, in order to make that happen."
“Sid's the same. He's got a tireless work ethic and that's contagious. He wants to win. He's willing to pay the price, to do anything it takes to take care of that first," Cooke said. "It's different, but they still have the same effect on their dressing room, their group.”
Like all great sporting rivalries, whether it be Magic and Bird on the hardwood, Brady and Manning on the gridiron, or Nadal and Federer on the court, the ultimate decision maker in determining who's the best is generally measured by the number of titles won.
The nation grieved for those hurt, killed and affected by the Boston Marathon bombings. After one of the suspects was caught on Friday — following a day-long lockdown and manhunt — sports returned to Boston over the weekend.
Ovechkin holds a significant edge in playoff heartbreak. The Capitals have reigned as the NHL's next legendary team in waiting for some years now, and as the great philosopher Homer Simpson once noted, “The waiting game sucks.”
“The Montreal Canadiens, when they were run by Frank Selke and Sam Pollock, always used to tell their players one thing before their season started,” NBC Sports analyst Pierre McGuire said. “Win your last game on home ice. Chances are, if you do that, you're going to win the Stanley Cup.”
In three of the past four springs, the Capitals have lost Game 7 of a playoff series on home ice.
WATCH LIVE: Detroit can complete the upset of Chicago with a win in Game 5. Can the Blackhawks prove their mettle as Presidents Trophy holders?
PHT: Boston defeated New York 3-1 to eliminate the Rangers and advance to the Eastern Conference finals.
Video: NHL from NBC Sports
Lundqvist takes one away from Lucic
Rangers goaltenderHenrik Lundqvist makes a beautiful glove save on Bruins winger Milan Lucic right in the front of the net to keep the score tied in the first period of Game 5.
Check out photos from the Kings' Stanley Cup victory parade in LA.
Stanley Cup playoffs
Check out photos from the NHL postseason action.
Stanley Cup winners
A look at the teams that have earned the right to hoist Lord Stanley's prize since 1965.
Some of Hollywood's hottest celebrities take in NHL games.
Check out the ice girls from around the National Hockey League.