This is a story about redemption. And Alex Ovechkin.

In the first period, the Washington Capitals’ captain had a glorious chance to score goal number thirty-nine (the same one he lost after his last-second game-tying tally was changed to Joel Ward Saturday afternoon).

As Troy Brouwer took out Red Wings goaltender Jimmy Howard in front of the net, Nicklas Backstrom sent a beautiful tape-to-tape pass to Ovechkin, who was hanging out in The Ovi Spot™. The net was wide open. The degree of difficulty was low. All Ovechkin had to do was send the puck home.

Instead, Ovi hit the puck with his stick slightly off-center, causing the vulcanized rubber to spin end-over-end. It dinged off the cross-bar. Ovi threw his head backwards in disgust.

“I was choking,” Ovechkin told the media after the game.

In overtime, however, the Russian machine was money. He got another opportunity from his prized spot on the ice — this time during a four-on-three power play. His one-timer beat Howard stick-side.

Great fist-pump.

Ovechkin has goal number 39 back in his ledger. He also has 15 career game-winning overtime tallies, which is crazy.

There’s a reason why we call it Ovitime, guys. Ovechkin almost has the same number of OTGWGs as the leaders — in half as many games. The list reads as such: Jaromir Jagr (18 in 1,447 games), Patrick Elias (16 in 1,131 games), Mats Sundin (15 in 1,346 games), Sergei Fedorov (15 in 1,248 games), and then Ovechkin (15 in 653 games).

Ovechkin continues his reign of terrificness atop the NHL leader board for goals as well. He has a nine-goal lead over Phil Kessel in second place.


Redemption. (Photo: Alex Brandon)


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  • Chris Cerullo

    I still literally have no idea how that puck didn’t go in. It looks like it just floats over the bar at the last second lol. The OTGWG was an absolute missile though.

  • Jack Conness

    That one-timer is a thing of beauty and perfection. It is absolutely devastating.

  • Here’s a freeze-frame of the puck hitting the crossbar. I also do not know how it did not go in.

  • yv

    That EN miss could be a Red Wings killer with huge 4:1 lead and could strip them of one point that they now ahead of Caps. But I think this is the third OTGWG for Ovi this season, if to add three? last seconds game-tying goals that’s a lot of points gained by Caps on Ovis last scalpel shots.

  • Steve

    The puck came off the toe of his stickblade. His toe curve is so open that unless he hits the puck just right, it’s gonna flutter. Im honestly surprised it doesnt happen more often to him. It works for him though. Glad he drilled the shit out of that puck in OT.

  • VeggieTart

    Game Ovi does it again! That miss in the first period was a howler. But I will take the two points.

  • James Desautels

    My thoughts seeing it live and now again are that he caught it literally a fraction of a second late causing him to make contact on top of the puck near to or under the heel of the blade where it contacts ice and it caused the puck to immediately knuckle end over end on contact and therefore flutter and change flight as it went toward goal. On a slap you are typically aiming to hit ice just slightly before the puck to you are torquing the stick and pushing through the puck, he just BARELY got there early, causing him to shank in the same way a golf drive off a tee when you just clip the top of the ball rather than hitting it flush wi the club head. or similar in baseball when the batter swings hard through but catches just enough under the ball to send a shallow fly. You can shank a puck the same way if youre driving hard enough, which Ovi clearly does, and you are just thousands of a second late and slightly off balance when you make contact.

  • James Desautels

    I meant he barely got there late…not early.

  • Myan

    My boyfriend and I saw an Ovechkin curve a the proshop earlier this week and he pointed out that’s made for going top shelf. He pairs that with a really flexy stick so I’m surprised he doesn’t shank it over the top more often! The technique of that OT goal though…what a thing of beauty!