CHICAGO — Washington Capitals star Alex Ovechkin became the third NHL player to reach 800 career goals when he scored three times Tuesday night at Chicago.
Ovechkin scored on his first two shots, beating Blackhawks goaltender Petr Mrazek 24 seconds into the game before stuffing one home on a power play with 11:46 left in the first period. The 37-year-old winger then completed his 29th career hat trick when he sent a rebound over a sprawled Mrazek 6:34 into the third.
The rest of the Capitals poured onto the ice to celebrate after the historic goal, and the United Center crowd responded by throwing their hats down and chanting “Ovi! Ovi!”
Ovechkin moved within one goal of Gordie Howe for second all-time. Wayne Gretzky has the record with 894 goals.
Ovechkin has seven goals in his last four games and a team-high 20 on the season. His previous four goals were all empty-netters.
The Capitals play seven of their next nine at home.
Ovechkin has been one of the NHL’s most dangerous scorers practically since he got two goals in his debut with Washington on Oct. 5, 2005, against Columbus.
The 12-time All-Star has nine seasons with at least 50 goals, including a career-high 65 during the 2007-08 season. The three-time MVP, who won the Stanley Cup in 2018, had 50 goals and 40 assists in 77 games last season.