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Video: Ovechkin becomes NHL’s first 40-goal scorer this season

Alex Ovechkin

Ovi’s back to scoring 40.

On Thursday night, Washington captain Alex Ovechkin scored his 40th goal of the year -- in his 54th game, no less -- becoming the NHL’s first 40-goal man this season and marking the first time he’s hit the plateau since scoring 50 during the 2009-10 campaign:

Here are Ovechkin’s goal totals over the last four years:

2010-11: 32 in 79 games
2011-12: 38 in 78 games
2013: 32 in 48 games (lockout-shortened campaign)

With tonight’s goal, Ovechkin became the first player in the NHL this season to hit 40 goals, putting him 10 clear of Toronto’s Phil Kessel (who sits in second, with 30 tallies).

Goal No. 40 was also Ovechkin’s second in his last five games, putting him on pace for a potential 60-goal campaign... which would be a real plateau for the Russian sniper to reach. Ovechkin has just one 60-goal campaign in his career, and it came during his third year in the NHL when he scored 65 (and notched a career-high 112 points).