The Washington Capitals saw Alex Ovechkin make even more history on Tuesday against the New York Islanders, as he ripped a shot right off the draw for his 767th career goal. Ovi’s strike late in the third not only moved him past Jaromir Jagr for third on the NHL’s all-time goals list but also saw him become the highest European scorer in NHL history.
During the game, his teammates cleared the bench and mobbed the Great 8 in a giant group hug at center ice to celebrate the milestone. That celebration has continued off the ice.
Longtime teammate and friend Nicklas Backstrom took to Twitter to shout out his captain.
“Third all time and climbing, congrats bro @ovi8,” Backstrom wrote.
— Nicklas Backstrom (@backstrom19) March 16, 2022
Backstrom and Ovechkin most recently played their 1,000th career NHL game together back on March 8 against Calgary, where Alex Ovechkin tied Jagr’s record. Backstrom would record his 1,000th career point one night later in Edmonton.
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Backstrom and Ovechkin’s former bench boss in Barry Trotz, who now coaches the Islanders, also took the time to congratulate Ovechkin.
“Obviously congrats to him. I wish he wouldn’t have scored against us, but he keeps climbing the ladder,” Trotz said.
When it comes to the all-time record, Ovechkin sits 35 goals away from passing Gordie Howe and 128 red lights behind Wayne Gretzky for the most in NHL history. Ovechkin acknowledged that being third and the No. 1 European is quite the feat, but he’s not ready to stop there.
“It is [crazy], but I’m still playing. You never know what’s going to happen in the future,” Ovechkin said. “You never know what’s going to happen tomorrow. I’m happy I did it, and we did it as a team. Now it’s just a period of time. And if I can do it, I will. If something happen, I’m happy.