One of the joys of returning to a normal NHL schedule is that we have been able to chase perhaps the biggest record in North American sports and this is Alex Ovechkin’s search for 895 goals. Having scored five goals in five games so far this season, he has recognized the urgency. But if you’re Ovekkin, you’ll probably realize that you’ve lost enough time that what you left behind can be just as valuable.
Let’s be clear: Ovechkin doesn’t have to reach 895 goals to be the best scorer of all time. He already. When you weigh in on how the game has changed, and realize that Ovi played like Gretzky in the 80s, he would kill a handful of goalie, it’s easy to see. Gretzky played in an era when teams scored nearly four goals per game. Ovechkin has played his entire career in an environment where team averages are either below three goals or above that number per game. Throughout his career, the league scoring average was 2.86 goals per game per team. Ovie has scored 0.61 goals per game, or 21 percent of his team’s goals per game. Put it in 1987, and he will score 0.77 goals per game. If he had already averaged, he would have scored 925 goals. So again, the best scorer of all time.
But there are some who will not give him this label until he holds the title of most goals, and in that sense, Ovechkin has been disabled. He lost the entire season and a half in labor disputes. He has lost 50 more games at the Covid stop. This is the 166 games Ovechkin could not play because he was out of control, which is why he had to score 100-101 goals at his scoring rate. Some games have been missed due to injuries, and maybe 90-95 goals. These numbers will put him closer to 830 now and would like to break Gretzky’s record next season.
But we can’t cry for a knockout lockout, so now the question is can Ovi get another 160 goals before giving up time in his career? There’s no indication that Ovechkin won’t play until he’s 40 or older, so saying yes seems preliminary.
If You’re looking for signs this season, and it’s always foolish to do it after just five games because anything can happen in just five games, it has its pros and cons.
Perhaps Ovechkin’s greatest skill is the amount of shots on goal he has made throughout his entire career. He averaged 4.77 shots per game, more than just Phil Esposito among the league legends. And Ovechkin doesn’t live by the side of an opposing goalkeeper like Esposito. Ovie goes into the net, but his game is mostly mid-range jumper.
This year he is not getting the number That shot he usually does. He had only 20, but luckily he buried 20 percent of them. It won’t continue, obviously, because the shooting percentage of his career is 12, and he never went to the top 15 in one season.
On the plus side, Ovechkin’s personal expected goals so far are the highest in five seasons, according to NaturalStatrick.com, as is his chance to score individually in every game. That means he’s probably taking less Shots, but he’s getting them from a better place than usual. Per IcyData.com, Ovie cut his shot in half outside the circle and focused on getting a chance from between the ring and the bottom, where you want to be.
Make no mistake, Ovechkin Gretzky will have the biggest record of the game caught at 894. Ovi has never collected 92 or 86 in a season like Gretz, the era in which he played. Meanwhile, Barry Bonds can collect Homer at a higher rate than Hank Aaron, for whatever reason, and no matter what you think about them. This is where Ovechkin is supposed to be metronomically great for two decades in a much harder scoring era, not a beaver in the easy Homer era (not that Bonds isn’t one of the best players of all time, as he was).
Still, Ovechkin is 36 years old. And he probably needs four more seasons to score close to his normal rate. If his shot down trend is actually ideal, and not just a five-game Drop, that’s going to be a problem. As he gets older, can he still consistently go in the middle of the ice, can he rush regularly? We don’t know for a while.
Also, The NHL should already be pushing the shit out of this rush, but now I’m overdosing on the argument.
Next are the senators, wings and coyotes. Hull could fall next weekend.