Alex Ovechkin reached another milestone in Saturday’s Blue Jackets – Capitals game. By scoring his 20th goal of the season (in just 25 games), Ovechkin reached 750 goals for his career. Increasingly, Ovechkin seems like he might indeed be able to reach one Wayne Gretzky all-time record: 894 goals.
He’s now just 144 goals away, at age 36.
Ovechkin became the second-fastest player to 750 goals (in 1,222 games), behind only (of course) Gretzky (1,001 games). Gordie Howe took 1,598 games to reach 750, while Jaromir Jagr needed 1,661.
This also marks 17 straight seasons where Ovechkin’s scored at least 20 goals. Not too shabby in its own right, especially since he’s experienced some lockout and pandemic-shortened campaigns.
At 750 goals, Alex Ovechkin ranks fourth all-time, with Jaromir Jagr (766 goals) next up at third. Ovechkin’s now 50 goals away from 800+, a level only reached by Gretzky (894) and Gordie Howe (801). Ovechkin passed Brett Hull and Marcel Dionne earlier this season.
- Wayne Gretzky – 894 goals.
- Gordie Howe – 801 goals.
- Jaromir Jagr – 766 goals.
- Alex Ovechkin – 750 goals.
- Brett Hull – 741 goals.
- Marcel Dionne – 731 goals.
Keeping with the theme of Ovechkin not just scoring from his “office” this season, the elite sniper scored number 750 from a sharp angle, in transition:
750‼️ 🚨 @ovi8 pic.twitter.com/PZpM1lchnS
— NHL GIFs (@NHLGIFs) December 5, 2021
An updated look at Ovechkin chasing Gretzky’s 894 goals now that he’s at 750
In early 2020, Alex Ovechkin was approaching 700 goals. At that time, PHT compiled the following projections in asking if Ovechkin could surpass Gretzky’s 894 goals:
- John Buccigross’ offhand projection from more than a decade ago, which is now only available at the Wayback Machine.
- Benjamin Wendorf reacting to that projection with his own for Hockey Graphs back in 2015.
- The Athletic’s Dom Luszczyszyn guessing back in April 2019 (sub required).
- Luszczyszyn updating that projection later on, around the time Ovechkin reached 700.
Here’s an updated look at those projections (starting in 2019-20) alongside actual Ovechkin production en route to 750 goals. Just 144 goals away from Gretzky’s record 894, things look promising for Ovechkin.
|Season||Hockey Graphs||Buccigross||Dom L early||Dom L second||Actual Ovechkin|
Intriguing that a wide range of projections put Ovechkin where he needs to be, huh?
Ovechkin’s chase of 894 goals? Gretzky-approved
Back in October 2021, Gretzky reiterated that he hopes Ovechkin breaks his all-time 894 goals record. It’s not just something that would make “The Great One” happy; it’s looks increasingly feasible. Gretzky himself said that Ovechkin has a “legitimate shot” at 894 goals.
“If he can stay healthy, I think this is the greatest thing for the game,” Gretzky said, via NHL.com’s Tom Gulitti. “I think it’s a positive. He’s been so good for not only the NHL, but he’s been great for hockey in Russia. He’s been great for hockey worldwide. So I’m just one of his biggest fans and it’s only good for the game if he can break the record.
“So he just has to be relaxed and it’s going to take two, three, four years, but eventually he’s probably going to break the record.”
James O’Brien is a writer for Pro Hockey Talk on NBC Sports. Drop him a line at email@example.com or follow him on Twitter @cyclelikesedins.