Alex Ovechkin hit one of the biggest milestones of his career five years ago today (January 10, 2016). In front of 18,506 people at Verizon Center, Ovi scored twice in a 7-1 victory over the Ottawa Senators, including his 500th career NHL goal.
Ovi became the fifth-fastest player in NHL history to reach the 500-goal mark, doing so in his 801st career game. He trailed only Brett Hull (693), Mike Bossy (647), Mario Lemieux (605), and Wayne Gretzky (575).
Ovechkin’s historic goal came 16:19 into the second period on a power play. While camped out in his office on the left circle, Jason Chimera found Ovechkin wide open. The Russian machine caught the pass and then wristed it into the back of the net past Senators goaltender Andrew Hammond. Andre Burakovsky got the secondary assist.
The Capitals left the bench and mobbed Ovechkin on the ice while his parents, Tatyana and Mikhail, cheered him on from different parts of the arena.
Mikhail and Tatyana Ovechkin react after Ovechkin's 500th goal. Ovi's mom was crying. pic.twitter.com/0UtMVZTkCW
— Ian Oland (@ianoland) January 11, 2016
Tatyana broke down in tears.
Ovechkin’s parents usually didn’t sit together because they enjoy games differently.
“That’s the way we like it,” Tatyana said in an interview. “I always like sitting by myself so that no one bothers me.”
“I like being with the crowd,” Mikhail said.
Here are some other factoids from that day.
Jan.10,2016: Alex Ovechkin scored twice, including the 500th goal of his NHL career, as the @Capitals beat Ottawa 7-1 at Verizon Center
Ovechkin became the fifth fastest player in NHL history to score 500x, hitting the mark in his 801st game pic.twitter.com/CXVJVSFipO
— Ben Raby (@BenRaby31) January 10, 2021
Since then, Ovechkin has scored 206 more goals over parts of the next five seasons and trails only seven players on the NHL’s all-time goals list: Wayne Gretzky, 894; Gordie Howe, 801; Jaromir Jagr, 766; Brett Hull, 741; Marcel Dionne, 731; Phil Esposito, 717; and Mike Gartner, 708.
— Wayne Gretzky (@WayneGretzky) February 23, 2020
Screenshot courtesy of NHL
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