Washington Capitals captain Alex Ovechkin participated in a Reddit AMA Saturday afternoon with Lars Eller. The chat was sponsored by Fanatics.
The Russian machine answered a wide variety of questions regarding his personal and professional life, but the most Ovi answer came when he was asked who the hardest goalie to score against is.
His answer was… basically nobody.
“It’s hard to say, sometimes when you feel the puck it doesn’t matter whos in net,” Ovechkin wrote [so sic’ly]. “I dont know, i dont like playing against Nabokov. We dont play a lot against each other but when he used to play against San Jose it was always hard. They had a very good defense over there, and it was hard to score against – but it doesnt matter I still score.”
The key quote here is it doesnt matter I still score. And it’s that consistency that makes Ovechkin so gr8.
The goaltender Ovechkin is referring to in the quote is retired Russian netminder Evgeni Nabokov.
During his 14 seasons in the NHL, Ovechkin has scored 644 goals against 133 different goaltenders, including eight different times against Nabokov. Those eight goals places Nabokov 20th on Ovechkin’s “most scored on” list. Ovi has also had three career multi-goal games against the former Shark and Islander goalie.
Part of Ovechkin’s deadliness is his shot. Teams gameplan for Ovi’s one-timer from the left circle on the powerplay, yet he has still managed to score 239 PPGs — fifth most ever.
“It’s probably the best shot in the history of the game,” Braden Holtby said according to the NHL.
These three All-Star goaltenders explained what made Ovechkin so special.
“A lot of his goals are through goalies, like through the arms, through the legs,” Henrik Lundqvist said. “The power on it is a sign of that because it just squeezes through.”
“It’s really like a rocket. It’s the perfect height,” Sergei Bobrovsky said. “It’s very uncomfortable for the goalie and it comes out so quick and accurate.”
“I would say about 85 percent of the time it’s a knuckleball,” Ben Bishop said. “When [other] guys shoot it, it goes in a somewhat straight line. His is dipping, diving, rising, sinking. It just comes at you. It’s not like any other shot.”
During the AMA, Ovechkin was asked if he thought it was possible to reach Wayne Gretzky’s all-time goals record of 894.
“You never know man, you never know,” Ovechkin said. “It’s hard.”
Other interesting answers in the chat included Nicklas Backstrom being the most underrated player Ovechkin’s ever played with. The Great 8 said his pregame go-to meal was “Spaghetti with alfredo and marinara sauce. And a chicken parm.” He also confirmed that “I’m always drinking soda on the bench, Coke! I have a special bottle.”
Ovechkin said that Lars Eller’s Stanley Cup-winning goal in Game Five was the greatest goal he’s ever seen and his best experience with fans was at the Georgetown Waterfront. “Drinking, talking, we all were together,” Ovechkin said. Asked if he got much sleep after winning the Stanley Cup, Ovi replied, “No, only slept on the plane when we go back home.”
— Nicklas Backstrom (@backstrom19) June 8, 2018
Headline photo: Cara Bahniuk
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