Capitals

Where does T.J. Oshie's falling down goal rank in his career?

Capitals

Timothy Leif Oshie scores goals. Like, a lot of goals.

If you tuned in to the Washington Capitals’ bout with the Pittsburgh Penguins on Thursday night, you saw him score another one. This tally was quite spectacular, as Oshie lit up the red light en route to a 5-2 Capitals victory. But where does his goal against the Penguins rank on his all-time goal list? Here are five of the most dazzling goals Oshie has scored in his legendary career:

5. Oshie scores on his knees in St. Louis

Oshie spent seven seasons as a Blue before heading to the nation’s capital, during which time he scored dozens of heart-stoppers. This might just be his best one. Much like the goal he scored vs. Pittsburgh on Thursday, Oshie was falling down as he somehow managed to squeeze the puck past the goaltender. Gliding on his knees, T.J. didn’t just tap the puck in—he was somehow able to go forehand-to-backhand before nudging it past the goal line. Interestingly enough, the secondary assist on the goal came from another future Capital, Kevin Shattenkirk.

4. T.J. starts the scoring in a crucial Caps victory in the Cup Finals

The Capitals had made their first Stanley Cup Finals appearance since 1998 and would go on to win their first Cup in franchise history. Oshie played a massive role in delivering Lord Stanley to D.C. In Game 4 of the Finals, with the Caps on the cusp of taking a massive 3-1 lead over the Vegas Golden Knights, T.J. started the scoring with a power play goal halfway through the first period. Off a great feed from Evgeny Kuznetsov, Oshie kicked the puck to his stick and promptly shoved the puck into the open net in front of a raucous Washington crowd. After the next game in Sin City, he would hoist the Cup.

 

3. Oshie turns the Bruins inside-out

A one-on-two? No problem says T.J. Oshie. In a mid-December 2019 game against Boston with the score tied 1-1, Oshie got the puck in the neutral zone and decided to take matters into his own hands. With Bruin D-men Charlie McAvoy and Connor Clifton hungry to knock him off the puck, Oshie pulled off one of the best curl-n-drags in modern history…even while getting hooked. Forehand-to-backhand without breaking a sweat, Oshie lifted the puck over Jaroslav Halak for the score.

2. One hand, no feet

When a goal reminds you of Alex Ovechkin’s physics-defying tally against the Coyotes—or in even more distant memory, Bobby Orr’s Cup-clinching goal in mid-air—you know it’s good. T.J.’s score against the Penguins on Thursday was reminiscent of both of them. Up 1-0 against their division foes in the third period, the Capitals were in need of some insurance. Enter T.J. Oshie. After another head-fake on a helpless defender, T.J. used just his left hand to nudge the puck behind Tristan Jarry for the score. Not only that, he was tangled up with Mike Matheson, who was able to force Oshie to make do as he was falling to the ice. All in a day’s work for the Washington state native.

1. Oshie wins it for the United States

T.J. Oshie: American hero. That’s what the headline became after he almost singlehandedly defeated the Russian national team in a group game during the 2014 Sochi Olympics. After a 2-2 score in regulation and a scoreless overtime, the game went to a shootout. Olympic hockey rules, unlike the NHL, stipulate that a team can use a single skater as many times as they’d like in a shootout. Given Oshie’s track record in the shootout, Head Coach Dan Bylsma gave Oshie the green light, who in turn would light up the red. Using a slew of dekes against opposing netminder Sergei Bobrovski (but electing to shoot forehand each time), Oshie would score in four of his six attempts, ultimately winning it for the U.S. on the final one. Sadly, the Americans would lose 5-0 to Finland in the Bronze Medal game and finish in fourth place at the Sochi games. Still, Oshie’s heroics against Russia cemented himself as not just an NHL legend, but an American sports icon.