Washington Capitals: The greatness that is Alex Ovechkin

Alex Ovechkin, Washington Capitals (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
Alex Ovechkin, Washington Capitals (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images) /

We are all witnesses as Washington Capitals fans watching the greatness of Alex Ovechkin night after night. Now we get to do it for five more seasons.

Needing just 33 goals to catch Wayne Gretzky, I’m confident he can do it the way he’s been trending. He’s defied age and still lights up the scoreboard night after night. Last season he scored 24 goals and is now at 730 in his career.

The previous season saw Ovechkin score 48 goals before the league shut down due to the pandemic. His 48 goals tied for the league lead that season earning him his NHL record ninth Maurice “Rocket” Richard Trophy. It was also the seventh time he won it in the last eight seasons.

Also that season, Ovechkin scored his 700th career goal against the New Jersey Devils. He was the second fastest player to reach that mark. There was just 13 games remaining before the season got suspended and Ovechkin was on pace for 57 goals.

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Ovechkin has played in 1,197 of the Capitals 1,239 games equating to 96.6 percent. Yeah, he’s been that durable since making his NHL debut on Oct. 5, 2005. He is one of seven players in NHL history to play their first 16 seasons with the same team and appear in at least 96.6 percent of their team’s regular season games. Ovechkin has played in 435 of the Caps last 450 games, seven missed due to injury.

Since entering the NHL in 2005-06, Ovechkin has led the league in goals, power play goals (269), power play points (499), game winning goals (116), overtime goals (24) and ranks second in points (1,320). Ovechkin holds a 244 goal lead over the next highest scorer during that span which is Sidney Crosby with 486 goals.

Despite starting his career in 2005, Ovechkin leads the NHL in goals since the start of the 1992-93 season. He’s also the NHL’s all time leader in overtime goals (24), ranks second in power play goals (269) and shots (5,727) while ranking fourth in game winning goals with 116.

Ovechkin has 71 career playoff goals including 15 on Washington’s way to their first Stanley Cup, winning the Conn Smythe Trophy for playoffs MVP as well. He was also the first Russian born captain to win the Stanley Cup. He’s the only player in NHL history to win a Stanley Cup, a Conn Smythe, a Calder, Art Ross, Hart, Ted Lindsay, and Maurice Richard Trophy.

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Needing just 33 a season to catch Gretzky (165 total), it is going to be one heck of a ride for the next five seasons watching greatness before our eyes.