Tonight on this date December 20, 2013 at the PNC Arena in Raleigh, NC both NHL and Capitals milestones were made as captain and winger Alex Ovechkin became the 89th player in NHL history to score 400 career goals. Being the sixth fastest player to reach 400 goals (634 games played) Ovechkin joins an elite group that consists of players such as: Wayne Gretzky (the fastest 436 games), Brett Hull and Mario Lemieux. Also at age 28, Ovechkin becomes the fourth youngest player to reach 400, the youngest being Wayne Gretzky at age 23. Ovie’s goal was key to seal the victory over the Carolina Hurricanes by a score of 4-2 ending their two game losing streak against Carolina.
Washington was able to score a lot of goals on Cam Ward, the third different Hurricanes goalie they have faced this season, especially on the power play. The Caps went 3 for 4 on the power play with Nicklas Backstrom recording three of his four assists tonight on them, Backstrom is currently leading the NHL in power play assists. Backstrom also assisted Ovie’s 400th goal, the connection of Backstrom to Ovechkin is the second most successful goal-assist team (129 goals) starting back from 2007-08, in first are the Sedin’s in Vancouver with 134 goals. The Caps first line center has now scored points in five straight games and 16 in his last 7.
Caps goalie Philip Grubauer recorded 41 saves in this win and improves his record on the season to 4-1-1. Washington despite stopping the Canes Brian Skinner’s consecutive goal streak at three games, couldn’t stop Jordan Staal from recording a point which he usually does when he plays Washington. This was the third of five meetings between these two teams, they will meet again on January 2nd at the Verizion Center.
Next game for the Caps will be tomorrow Saturday as they come back home to face the New Jersey Devils. Game time will be 7:00pm/ET at the Verizion Center.
About the Author
Written by Brendan Keelan
Former High School and College athlete (football, Wesley College)