It was a memorable night on Tuesday as Alexander Ovechkin of the Washington Capitals moved into third all-time in the National Hockey League in regular season goals. At 15:02 of the third period the native of Moscow, Russia scored his 767th NHL career regular season goal in a 4-3 Capitals overtime win over the New York Islanders from the Capital One Arena in Washington, D.C. In the process, Ovechkin passed Jaromir Jagr, who had 766 goals.
All of Ovechkin’s 767 goals have been with the Capitals. Wayne Gretzky is number one on the list with 894 goals. Gordie Howe is second with 801 goals. Gretzky’s 894 goals came with the Edmonton Oilers, Los Angeles Kings, St. Louis Blues and New York Rangers from 1979 to 1999. Howe’s 801 goals came with the Detroit Red Wings from 1946 to 1971, and with the Hartford Whalers in 1979-80. Both Gretzky and Howe spent time in their careers in the World Hockey Association, in addition to the NHL.
Ovechkin’s notable goal on Tuesday came with four minutes and 58 seconds left in the third period to put the Capitals up 3-2. It was his 37th goal of the season from fellow Russian Evgeny Kuznetsov of Chelyabinsk. Kuznetsov made NHL headlines just a week ago when he recorded his second career hat trick in another 4-3 Capitals overtime win. This time Washington’s opponent was the Vancouver Canucks.
The shootout on Tuesday was intriguing as it went eight rounds. Ovechkin was the Capitals’ fifth shooter, but was stopped by Islanders’ goaltender Semyon Varlamov.
On the season, Ovechkin now has 37 goals and 35 assists for 72 points in 59 games. He is a +8 with 12 penalty minutes, 21 power-play points, one short-handed goal, four game-winning goals, a NHL-leading 266 shots on goal, three faceoff wins, 18 blocked shots, 110 hits, 24 takeaways and 40 giveaways.
With the win, the Capitals improved to a record of 33 wins, 18 regulation losses, and 10 losses in extra time for 76 points. They are in fourth place in the Metropolitan Division.