Alex Ovechkin continues to amaze with his goal-scoring prowess and now sits just two goals shy of being the eighth player in NHL history to score 700 goals. It is easy to take for granted what Ovechkin is doing, but you shouldn't especially when you consider he is 34 years old.
This year, a new chapter to the Ovechkin narrative is being written and that chapter is how incredible he is playing for his age.
Getting 700 goals is not just a life-time achievement award Ovechkin is getting thanks to previously great seasons, Ovechkin is surging to 700 goals because, when it is all said and done, he is having the greatest season ever for a 34-year-old in terms of goals.
Per Hockey Reference, Frank Mahovlich currently holds the record for the most goals scored in a season by a player 34 years old or in a season in which he would turn 34 years old with 43. He did it with the Montreal Canadiens in 1971-72.
Ovechkin already has 40. It's February. He is currently on pace for 61.
Let that sink in.
No one in the history of the NHL at 34 years old has scored more than 43 goals in a season. Ovechkin is on pace for 61.
Here are the goal totals for some of the most dominant goal scorers in history from when they were 34:
Gordie Howe: 38 (1962-63)
Maurice "Rocket" Richard: 38 (1955-56)
Luc Robitaille: 37 (2000-01)
Marcel Dionne: 36 (1985-86)
Steve Yzerman: 35 (1999-00)
Phil Esposito: 34 (1976-77)
Mike Gartner: 34 (1993-94)
Joe Sakic: 33 (2003-04)
Brett Hull: 32 (1998-99)
Jarome Iginla: 32 (2011-12)
Sergei Fedorov: 31 (2003-04)
Peter Bondra: 30 (2002-03)
Jaromir Jagr: 30 (2006-07)
Wayne Gretzky: 11 (1994-95, season shortened to just 48 games due to a lockout)
If you want to know why it is starting to become believable that Ovechkin could catch Gretzky's goal record, it is because of how dominant he remains at his age. If he continues on this pace, it will be the most goals scored by any player 34 years or older ever. Johnny Bucyk currently holds that record with 51 goals when he was 35 in 1970-71. He is the only player 34 or older to ever score 50. Ovechkin is currently on pace to shatter that.
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