MLive’s Ansar Khan filed a game-day notebook in which he discusses the Red Wings’ wariness of one Alexander Ovechkin during this evening’s match-up with #8’s Washington Capitals:
Ovechkin, at age 36, is showing no signs of slowing down. He is second in the NHL with 22 goals and third with 48 points. In his 17th NHL season, Ovechkin continues to possess one of the best one-time shots in the league.
“If you haven’t seen Alex Ovechkin play live you don’t understand how big he is,” Red Wings coach Jeff Blashill said. “He’s a huge, huge man. That was one of the biggest things I realized when I was first behind the bench and you see him at ice level. He’s just wide, he’s strong, he’s big. That allows him such great strength to be able to fight people off and still shoot. He’s got such a great release and he can shoot it really from anywhere. A lot of guys need a really good pass to shoot one-timers. He can shoot it in any kind of sphere around his body. It’s really amazing.”
Washington’s 2-0 victory at Detroit on Nov. 11 is the only game this season in which Ovechkin did not record a shot on a goal, just the second game over the past two seasons in which he’s failed to register a shot.
The nine-time winner of the Rocket Richard Trophy for most goals in the league leads the NHL with 149 shots.
Ovechkin ranks fourth all-time with 752 goals, trailing Wayne Gretzky (894), Gordie Howe (801) and Jaromir Jagr (766). If he stays healthy, there is a good chance he will pass Gretzky in about four years at age 40.