One night after saying he was looking forward to passing Sergei Fedorov as Russia’s leading NHL goal scorer in front of his family and more than 18,000 friends at Verizon Center, Alex Ovechkin remains stuck on 483 goals.
Only Friday night, he didn’t suffer through the pain of having his record-breaking goal overturned by a coach’s challenge. Ovechkin managed just three shots in the Caps’ 3-2 overtime loss to the visiting Calgary Flames and now has gone three straight games without a goal since tying Fedorov’s mark last Saturday against the Toronto Maple Leafs.
Since tying the mark, Ovechkin has had two goals overturned on coach’s challenges.
After Friday night’s game, Capitals coach Barry Trotz was asked if he sensed mounting pressure on Ovechkin to set the record.
“Yeah, today I did for the first time,” Trotz replied. “He wants to get it, there’s no question.
“I haven’t talked to him about it, but the best advice you can give him is just play your normal game. You’ve scored a gazillion goals in this league.
“And to my team, (my advice is) don’t look for Ovi to score that goal. Don’t overpass, don’t do anything (differently). Play the way we play and I will guarantee he’ll score that goal and he’ll score many after that.
“But today I think he wanted it in front of his fans and the people that supported him. I think he wants to get it over with. When he does it everyone will be very happy.”
Ovechkin now must wait until the Capitals face the Red Wings Wednesday night in Detroit to set the record. In the Caps’ last visit there on Tuesday night Ovechkin matched a career-high with 15 shots on goal but saw every one of them stopped by goaltender Petr Mrazek in a 1-0 loss.