Three months after Alex Ovechkin became the second-highest goal scorer in NHL history, the Washington Capitals are set to honor the Great 8 with a pregame ceremony.
Ovechkin scored his 802nd career goal for the Capitals back on December 23, 2022, passing Gordie Howe and moving into the No. 2 spot on the all-time goals list. Washington will pay homage to their captain by holding a special pregame ceremony before Washington takes on the Columbus Blue Jackets on March 21 at Capital One Arena.
“During the ceremony, Ovechkin will receive a special gift from the organization, the National Hockey League, the National Hockey League Players' Association and his teammates,” read a team press release. In addition, Gordie Howe’s son and fellow Hockey Hall of Famer Mark Howe will join Capitals’ owner Ted Leonsis and Ovechkin’s family on the ice during the ceremony.
There is much to enjoy for fans in attendance – and not in attendance – as well. All Capitals players will wear No. 8 on their pregame warmup jerseys, which will be signed and auctioned off to fans at a later date. All fans in the arena will receive an Alex Ovechkin goal counter bobblehead which includes a QR code for a virtual reality experience in honor of Ovechkin passing Howe.
“Fans along the glass for warmups will be given cutouts of Ovechkin's image in celebration of the milestone,” the press release continued. “Fans are also invited to stop by an Ovechkin themed throne comprised of more than 802 hockey pucks on the 100-level concourse, as well as a photobooth featuring Ovechkin-themed props.”
Ovechkin is Washington’s leader both in all-time goals (816) and goals this season (36). He now sits just 79 goals shy of breaking Wayne Gretzky’s all-time record for NHL goals scored. Washington’s next test will be on the road this weekend, as they take on the New York Islanders on Saturday evening at 7:30.