Is this photo the reason why Maria Kirilenko called off her engagement and ended her relationship with Alex Ovechkin? According to Sports Illustrated, this picture of Ovechkin with gymnast Karolina Sevastianova taken by the hockey star's friend, Russian basketballer Russian basketballer Vitaly Fridzonon, and posted on his Instagram feed led to the breakup.
In the statement released to Russia's R-Sport by Kiri, she said there were "a lot of reasons" for the breakup but did not go into detail. It may look harmless, but there's probably more going on there than meets the eye if the reports are true.
UPDATE: Kiri was interviewed by Sovetsky Sport and denied this image had anything to do with the breakup. Via Deadspin:
Maria, can you comment on the story about the pictures with Sasha and [gymnast Karolina Sevastyanova] on social networks, which are being so vigorously discussed in the media?"Certain habits"? "Particulars"? Bueller? Bueller?
Maria Kirilenko: Believe me, over the years I have seen so many pictures of Sasha in the company of young ladies, that I have gotten used to it. That is normal. We are public figures, and people often want to take pictures with us. This is the first time I heard about this girl, and I made my decision to break up the engagement long before these pictures appeared on the social networks. It is laughable to point to them as the main reason behind the breakup – after three years together couples do not break up over a couple of pictures. There are much more significant reasons. I will not go into any more details about them. But let's just say it is not a secret for anybody that Sasha has certain habits and particulars of behavior that I did not consider worth tolerating anymore.
[Photo(s) credit: rsport.ru]