On a normal day, Washington Capitals captain Alex Ovechkin can shoot a puck at 100 terrifying miles per hour towards the net. Caps Con was apparently not a normal day.

Participating in the 2013 Caps Convention, Ovechkin, despite his status as a world-famous athlete, stayed  down to earth, playing street hockey with kids (more on that later) and displaying his skills on the hardest shot machine.

“When he came up, there was a lady about to shoot,” Caps intern Q’marth Ghaemi excitedly told me in an interview. “She turned around right before she was about to hit the puck, sees Ovechkin, and just totally freaked out.”

Ghaemi, who manned the hardest shot machine, said Ovechkin was one of only two Capitals to stop by. He also confirmed to me that it was easily the coolest thing that happened at his station all day.

“There was just a giant crowd of people all around Ovechkin,” Ghaemi said. “This machine was one of the main attractions of the day. But when Ovi came over, everybody went nuts. Everybody came over, everybody’s phones were up snapping pics. I maybe even tried to snag a pic.”

Since I situated myself in a prime video position behind the goal (and almost died), I never had any idea how fast Ovechkin’s 12 shots were.


“He started shooting and he was only getting into the 70’s,” Ghaemi revealed. “His hardest shot went 77.5 miles per hour. That was the hardest shot we had all day. We’re pretty sure though that the machine’s off by about 20 miles per hour.”

“Oh, really?” I asked.

“Like there’s no way she just shot it 18 miles per hour,” Ghaemi said, pointing to a girl that looked no older than four. The puck rolled towards the net at a snail’s like pace.

“I can assure you, [Ovechkin] was shooting in the 90’s. Maybe even touching 100. He was looking nice.”

With Ovi hitting 75 MPH, I wondered if a hockey blogger could shoot faster.

My first shot, a slap shot, went 48.5 MPH. My second, a wrist shot, went an embarrassingly low 39 MPH.

Yeah, that Ovechkin guy is pretty good.


Photo credit: Chris Gordon

View all our 2013 Capitals Convention posts.

  • Bobby

    77? He is washed up. Trade him now!

  • Chris

    If a little girl shot a puck that registered 18mph, and there is no way it went that fast according to the game attendant, wouldn’t that indicate that Ovechkin’s 77.5mph shot was in fact much slower than the machine registered and not “at least 20mph faster?”

  • I think what he was trying to say was that the machine struggled with minimum and maximum speeds — like anything above 50 and below 20. I’m pretty sure my speed was accurate though. SIGH.

  • OV

    Peter, could you please express your opinion about syrian situation just for me? I’m really interested in your vision of this conflict. You cared so much about gays in Russia and now I just want to hear how much do you care about terrorists killing christians there and nobody gives a fuck about it. There are facts that some of the syrian freedom army’s soliders are al queda’ people and there are facts that many of christian temples, churches and relics are being destroyed every day.

    Please tell me what an average american person think about all that stuff.

    Thank you.

  • I’m against war?

  • Also I’m not average; I’m delicious.

  • Chris

    Oh, then you easily hit 68mph on that slap shot. Very respectable!

  • OV

    So you are against this war, right?

  • This is a bit off-topic, but yes. Isn’t everyone aside from the Alawites who are massacring their own people and the foreign mujaheddin effing s up?

  • Sage Confucius

    Magically delicious, actually.

  • Freedoooom

    Sounds right. His standing slap shot speed in the ESPN sport science thing was 80 mph.

  • Here’s another video of Ovi shooting. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yjhxN5gP-0U

  • James Acker

    I was there (wearing gray Hockey Hall of Fame shirt in second video). I took high-speed 0.1s burst of a couple of his shots. I’ll post to FB soon. It was fun to be that close and see his stick skills.

  • brian!

    Worth mentioning: those machines have a tendency to pick up the stick speed as the puck speed if you’re shooting too close. That’s why in hockey camp we were always told to shoot from 10-12 feet out, or we’d risk confusing the sensor.