washington capitals legend Alex Ovechkin reached an impressive milestone on Tuesday evening, becoming only the third player in NHL history to score 800 goals in his career, joining Wayne Gretzky and Gordie Howe. Unlike the two icons who did it with various organizations, Ovi is the first to do so with one franchise.
After the game, Ovechkin sent a heartfelt message to his Caps teammates. Via ESPN:
“This … it’s huge. It’s huge for hockey, it’s huge for the organization,” a drained Ovechkin told his teammates in the locker room after the win. “And to do it with you guys, it’s special.”
Ovechkin ultimately scored a hat-trick in a 7-3 win over the Chicago Blackhawks, netting the historic 800th in the third period. That took his tally to 20 on the season. It’s now his 18th straight season with at least 20 goals. Only two others players have accomplished such a feat. Howe and Brendan Shanahan.
Alex Ovechkin is easily one of the best players to ever put on a pair of skates and to think he’s 37 years old and still firing on all cylinders offensively is unreal. But after it was all said and done, Ovi was just focused on moving on and helping his team win games:
“It’s a special night. To get two goals right away, I could feel the game,” Ovechkin said on ESPN’s “SportsCenter with Scott Van Pelt” after the game. “I’m really proud that it’s over. Now, we can move on and focus on the next one.”
“I’m just trying to think about the next game, the next shift and not what’s going to happen out there,” Ovechkin said. “I’m just going to try to help the team win, and it doesn’t matter how.”
The Capitals are 15-12-4 on the season, which is good for sixth place in the Metropolitan Division. They’re back in action Thursday against the Dallas Stars.