The NHL will be entering its centennial year in 2017 and Tuesday, Gary Bettman announced their centennial ambassador: Wayne Gretzky.
During a long introductory press conference with reporters in Toronto, Gretzky spoke on a wide range of topics and then Alex Ovechkin got brought up.
On January 10, Alex Ovechkin became the fifth fastest player in hockey history to hit the 500-goal plateau. In seven of his 11 seasons pro, Ovechkin has scored 50 goals or more — including a career high 65 in 2007-08. At age 31, Ovi, who has scored 50 goals three-straight seasons, trails Wayne Gretzky’s all-time goal-scoring record by 369 tallies.
Does The Great Eight think he can catch The Great One?
Not a chance.
Before the Caps-Pens series, NHL.com’s Dan Rosen sat down with Hall of Famer Wayne Gretzky and asked him about the game’s two biggest superstars, Alex Ovechkin and Sidney Crosby. The captains will play against each other in the postseason for the first time since 2009. The Penguins won that series in seven games.
“Both guys love the microscope and love being under pressure, and both guys seem to elevate their game when they play against each other,” Gretzky told NHL.com’s Dan Rosen. “But that’s natural. Everybody has a lot of pride as an athlete and when you’re an elite athlete and you play head to head against a guy who is your peer, there is more of a motivation factor. I anticipate both players raising their game to another level.”
Gretzky also addressed Ovechkin’s legacy. While the Russian machine has managed to win the Richard Trophy six times and be a four-time MVP, Ovechkin has not won the Stanley Cup in his 10-year NHL career, never making it past the second round of the playoffs.
During the second period, CSN Mid-Atlantic showed hockey great Wayne Gretzky and his wife, actor Janet Gretzky, sitting in a Wells Fargo Center suite. Wayne was in town ahead of a public celebration of Ed Snider, which will be held on Thursday.
While on screen, Wayne requested a kiss from his wife Janet. The ProStar made duck lips, asking for a kiss in the creepiest way imaginable. Janet declined, which is doubly unfortunate because then Wayne tried again.
Thursday night, a day after the Caps’ 4-3 overtime loss to Los Angeles, Alex Ovechkin had dinner with the greatest Kings (and NHL) player of all-time, Wayne Gretzky. In fact, it was a hockey double date.
According to Ovechkin’s fiancee, Nastya Shubskaya, Gretzky’s wife Janet organized the night out in Malibu. Wayne’s son Ty Gretzky also joined.
“Tnx for gr8 time !!!u the best!!!!,” Ovechkin wrote on Instagram.
The two couples ate at Nobu Malibu, a fancy oceanfront restaurant which encourages reservations “be made up to one month in advance.” Between the two players, Ovechkin and Gretzky have scored 1,410 goals and totaled 3,813 points during their careers. I’m sure they had a lot of gr8 things to talk about.
Photo: Geoff Burke
On January 10, 2016, Alex Ovechkin became the fifth-fastest player to reach the 500-goal mark. Tuesday, NHL.com’s Dan Rosen spoke to Wayne Gretzky and asked The Great One, who has scored the most goals in NHL history with 894 career tallies, if he thinks Ovechkin, this generation’s greatest goal scorer, can catch him.
Wayne Gretzky has never been a fashion icon. Now, thanks to Sears Canada, you can dress like him.
On September 9, Sears Canada announced the No 99 Wayne Gretzky Collection. It features “better casual clothing” which “will keep men looking neat, handsome, and fashionable.”
So what are these neat, handsome, and fashionable things?
Photo credit: @NHL
Now, Ovechkin has been recognized as a finalist for the version selected by his peers. Along with Carey Price and Jamie Benn, Ovi is one of three players who could take home the Ted Lindsay Award as the league’s “most outstanding player” at the NHL’s postseason awards show in Las Vegas. This is Ovechkin’s sixth Lindsay Award nomination after winning the award three years in a row from 2008-2010. Only Wayne Gretzky, with five wins, and Mario Lemieux, with four, have won more the award more times since it was established in 1971.
Below, here’s the press release from the Capitals.
While handicapping the Art Ross race with ESPN’s Pierre LeBrun, Wayne Gretzy, the greatest hockey player to ever live, shared effusive praise for Washington Capitals captain Alex Ovechkin.
Russian Machine Never Breaks is not associated with the Washington Capitals; Monumental Sports, the NHL, or its properties. Not even a little bit.
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