The Great 8 is going digital. Washington Capitals captain Alex Ovechkin is officially launching his own NFT collection that fittingly drops on August 8 (8/8).
Ovechkin teamed up with Ethernity Chain and Impossible Brief for the new collection. Ethernity explains that the collection, “showcases the major accomplishments, signature gear and proud Russian heritage of one of the greatest hockey players to ever grace the rink.”
“I first talk about it with my team after some of the NFL guys did it, and I think it’s cool idea and wanted to try it,” Ovechkin told ESPN through Ethernity. “It’s a huge opportunity for players to try something different and the fans love it, so why not?
“I think digital collection is kind of cool. For lots of years I sign and take pictures with fans, and when I understand the digital art can last forever, I think fans would really like it.”
NFTs (non-fungible tokens) are digital assets that have exclusive, verified owners. The Capitals launched their own collection, the “ALL CAPS All-Digital Fan Collectibles” on July 15.
Ovechkin’s collection will feature his famous yellow-laced CCM skates, which pay tribute to his brothers Sergey and Misha. Another is the “Alex Ovechkin: Russian Sniper” trading card, which pays tribute to the Russian’s first career hat trick on Jan. 13, 2006. There’s also the “Alex Ovechkin: A Taste of Victory” card, which celebrates his long-awaited Stanley Cup win after 13 years in the league.
Ovechkin, 35, signed a five-year extension with Washington prior to the start of free agency. He looks to not only continue cementing his legacy in D.C. but also work toward breaking Wayne Gretzky’s goal record. Ovechkin currently sits at 730 career goals, one behind Marcel Dionne for fifth all-time. He’s 165 career goals away from breaking the record and needs to average 33 goals per season over the remainder of his contract.
“I still wanna be out there, I still wanna be better. I have five more years to be better,” Ovechkin said, adding, “That’s why I wanna play five more years. To have a chance to catch ‘The Great One,’ why not? If I’m gonna be second, pretty good number as well.”
The auction officially starts at 12 p.m. ET and will be available for 72 hours. It can be found here.