Thursday, January 14, 2016

Ovi Becomes Fifth-Fastest Player to Reach 500 Career Goals

"Capitals center Nicklas Backstrom and goaltender Braden Holtby will join Alex Ovechkin at the 2016 Honda NHL All-Star Game. This is the first time the Caps have had three All-Star participants since 1984-85. This season, the Capitals have the best record in the league while scoring the second-most goals and giving up the least. Their special teams are also special: second-best power play and fourth on the penalty kill. In 1984-85, Washington had four players — Bob Carpenter, Mike Gartner, Rod Langway, Scott Stevens — in the NHL All-Star Game in Calgary. The 2016 Honda NHL All-Star Game will be 5 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 31 in Nashville’s Bridgestone Arena. NBCSN will broadcast the game."
WASHINGTON - Alex Ovechkin scored his 500th goal Sunday night, becoming the 43rd player in NHL history to reach the milestone.

Ovechkin reached the mark in vintage fashion, scoring from just beyond the left hash marks during a second-period power play to give the Washington Capitals a 5-1 lead over the Ottawa Senators.

Ovechkin got an extended standing ovation and took a skate around the rink, acknowledging the cheering crowd that included his parents. He later drew another roar while waving to fans from the bench.

He added No. 501 midway through third, beating a defender with a sweeping deke at the top of the zone before smacking a shot past goalie Andrew Hammond for a 7-1 lead.

At 801 games, the Russian winger is the fifth-fastest player to 500 goals, trailing only Hall of Famers Wayne Gretzky (575 games), Mario Lemieux (605), Mike Bossy (647) and Brett Hull (693).

"He is one of a kind," Hull told the AP in a phone interview last week. "I admire what he does because he's a pure goal scorer."

Ovechkin has filled the net more often than anyone since he entered the league in 2005, scoring 149 more goals than the next closest player, Jarome Iginla.

Ovechkin was the first overall pick in the 2004 draft by Washington. He's been named an All-Star in each of his 11 seasons and was voted a captain for this year's All-Star game. He's won three straight Richard Trophies as the league's leading goal scorer and five overall. He's also won three Hart Trophies as league MVP.

The 30-year-old Ovechkin is the NHL leader in career goals by a Russian-born player.

Ovechkin has 26 goals this season, including five over his past three games.

More information:
» "Analytics say Ovechkin one of top goal-scorers ever"
» "Alex Ovechkin adds 500th goal to career timeline"
» "Capitals' Holtby on way to winning first Vezina Trophy"
» "Capitals captain Ovechkin buys Powerball tickets"

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