With 7:44 remaining in the first period and the Capitals trailing 1-0, Ovechkin checked Blackhawks defenseman Brian Campbell into the boards behind Chicago's goal, moments after Campbell had released the puck.
Campbell went face-first into the boards and lay on the ice for several minutes before being helped to the dressing room.
Ovechkin was given a five-minute major for boarding in addition to the game misconduct. A game misconduct penalty automatically incurs a fine and further review by the commissioner's office for possible suspension.
On Dec. 1, he was suspended for two games without pay by the NHL for a knee-to-knee hit on Carolina defenseman Tim Gleason.
"The knee [suspension from Dec. 1] does not apply as he was suspended for that," NHL head disciplinarian Colin Campbell said. "If you get two boarding game-misconduct penalties, you get an automatic suspension if 41 games have not lapsed. In [Ovechkin's] case, 41 games have lapsed since his last boarding [game misconduct], so he is not suspended automatically."
The NHL will review the incident, though, and Ovechkin is still subject to supplemental discipline.
Ovechkin leads the NHL in scoring with 96 points.
ESPN.com's Pierre LeBrun contributed to this report. Jesse Rogers covers the Blackhawks for ESPNChicago.com.