Hockey may be a team sport, but players have found ways to individually express themselves. From Alex Ovechkin’s yellow skate laces to Braden Holtby’s fashion sense, the Capitals have been one of the NHL’s leading teams to allow their players to show off their personalities to fans.
The Capitals went a step further with it this season. The team debuted goal songs for every individual player. Superstars like Alex Ovechkin and Nicklas Backstrom either selected their tune or, according to the Washington Post’s Samantha Pell, the Caps’ game operations staff did so for them.
The result has been even more anticipation and joy for goals as well as more insight into individual players’ personalities.
Monday, the Washington Capitals released all the players’ goal songs (and a Spotify playlist to go with it).
#3 NICK JENSEN
Nick of Time by AC/DC
Nick Jensen’s goal song is a pun off his first name.
Everybody trying to find you guilty
Make you want to tow the line
Saved by, saved in the nick of time
I was saved in the nick of time
#6 MICHAL KEMPNY
Mic Check by Rage Against the Machine
The Czech defender chose the fourth track from RATM’s The Battle Of Los Angeles. The album received critical acclaim as it was nominated at the 43rd Annual Grammy Awards for Best Rock Album. Rolling Stone named it the best album of 1999. Mic Check was not one of the album’s singles but is popular among Rage fans.
#8 ALEX OVECHKIN
Shake, Rattle, and Roll by Big Joe Turner
According to The Athletic’s Tarik El-Bashir, Ovechkin changed his original goal song, Dr. Dre’s Still D.R.E. to Shake, Rattle, and Roll in late December after noticing he had only scored 6 of his 22 goals this season at home.
Ovechkin decided on the song after flipping through his music on his phone and getting positive feedback from the team’s writer, Mike Vogel.
#9 DMITRY ORLOV
Oh Yeah by Yello
Orly’s goal song was made famous by Ferris Bueller’s Day Off. It’s another pun playing off a player’s name.
#13 JAKUB VRANA
Slither by Velvet Revolver
Vrana received the nickname “Jake The Snake” from NBC Sports Washington’s Craig Laughlin and the song plays off that.
#14 RICHARD PANIK
Hey Look Ma, I Made It by Panic! At the Disco
Panik’s goal song is by the only artist it could be by Panic! At The Disco. The only question was which song it’d ultimately be.
#19 NICKLAS BACKSTROM
Here I Go Again by Whitesnake
Backstrom picked the 80s rock song because it checked all the boxes for the Swedish center. It’s on his phone, it sounds great in an arena, and he personally likes it.
#20 LARS ELLER
Eye Of The Tiger by Survivor
Eller’s goal song, Eye Of The Tiger is a holdover from the 2017-18 season. The Capitals center received the nickname of Tiger at a Tony Robbins’ seminar. Robbins later tracked down Eller’s Stanley Cup-winning goal from Game Five as a show of appreciation.
“I was up on the stage, I think we had to choose some personal, like a spiritual animal or something,” Eller said. “I yelled out ‘tiger’ and from that day on, it was just. The guys were loving it. It’s been ‘Tiger’ from that day.”
#21 Garnet Hathaway
What Is Love by Haddaway
The fourth line winger specifically chose the 90’s pop hit What Is Love by the Trinidadian-German Eurodance artist Haddaway because of the play off his last name. The song saw a renaissance later in the decade after it was used in “Roxbury Guys” sketches on Saturday Night Live.
#26 NIC DOWD
You Can Call Me Al by Paul Simon
Dowd picked the Paul Simon classic as a nod to his wife Paige, according to El-Bashir. The couple was introduced to it at their wedding reception.
#28 BRENDAN LEIPSIC
Levels by Avicii
Leipsic, a house music fan, went with a classic from Avicii originally released in 2011.
#33 RADKO GUDAS
It’s A Long Way To The Top by AC/DC
The Czech defenseman is big into rock and a huge AC/DC fan. It’s one of two Capitals goal songs used by the rock legends.
#34 Jonas Siegenthaler
My Name Is Jonas by Weezer
The popular Weezer song (before they got bad) is a play off Siegenthaler’s first name.
#43 Tom Wilson
Whip It by Devo
This song was originally assigned to Wilson, whose nickname is Whip. The band Devo is also the nickname for Wilson’s longtime friend and former teammate Devante Smith-Pelly.
#62 CARL HAGELIN
Red Lights by Tiesto
The Swedish forward, who is also a fan of house music, picked a song by Alex Ovechkin’s friend Tiesto. Red Lights is a nod to what happens after a goal is scored – a red flashing light turns on.
#72 TRAVIS BOYD
Let’s Go Crazy by Prince
Boyd’s choice is a nod to Prince who was born in his home state, Minnesota.
#74 JOHN CARLSON
Johnny B. Goode by Chuck Berry
Carlson, the team’s top defender, chose an oldie originally recorded in the late 50’s that played off his name.
#77 TJ OSHIE
Take Me Home, Country Roads by John Denver
Oshie has what appears to be the most popular and easily recognizable goal song on the team, Denver’s Take Me Home, Country Roads. And that was by design. Oshie told El-Bashir that “’Country Roads’ is a fun singalong. Almost everyone knows it. And if you don’t, you can pick up on it.”
He added to Pell that “I figured the best part of playing in front of our fans is them getting involved.”
#92 EVGENY KUZNETSOV
Get Low by Lil John & the East Side Boyz
Due to a restriction by the Capitals that none of the Russians could pick Russian language songs, Kuznetsov went with rap, one of his favorite genres. After originally being misunderstood and Ludacris’s How Low blared from the loudspeaker after scoring, Kuznetsov clarified and changed it to Get Low by Lil Jon. “I wish one day it could be Russian song,” he lamented to El-Bashir.
One Capitals player notably absent from the list is Braden Holtby, who will one day score an NHL goal. Mark our words!
Headline photo: NBC Sports Washington/@Capitals
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