NUMBER 10 - Alexander Ovechkin vs. Montreal
Ovie doing his thang
Coming in at number ten is Alexander the Great. The electric goalscorer has left Caps, and really hockey fans worldwide, in utter disbelief with his crafty style of play. He’s on pace to blow Peter Bondra’s all time Caps goalscoring record out of the water (he only needs 102 more), which is no easy feat knowing the success of Bonzai’s career. His goals alone could make a top ten list.
This one comes against Les Habitants in the 2009 campaign on February the 18th. The Capitals were cruising in the Eastern Conference with 79 points, but ten minutes into the first period found themselves trailing the Canadiens by one. That is, until the Great 8 decided it was time for a change. The Canadiens Mike Komisarek sent an outlet pass that was just out of reach for Roman Hamrlik. The pass caromed off the boards to a streaking Ovechkin. In an instinctive motion, Ovie turns his back to the net, and uses his backhand to tap the puck against the boards just past Hamrlik, all while spinning a full 180 degrees back up the ice. All of this took .137 seconds. Ok, it may have been faster, but that’s as quickly as I can start and stop a stopwatch. Anyways, Ovechkin tears past Hamrlik and gains control of the puck just a few feet past the blue line. He head towards the net, but runs into Kyle Chipchura right at the face off dot. Ovie carefully positions his body to shield the puck away from Chipchura, and continues barreling towards the goal. Chipchura ends up bringing Ovechkin down just a few feet in front of the crease, sending Ovie on his back. This naturally does not deter Ovechkin. He instead continues sliding to the net on his back, and somehow manages to get the puck on his forehand. As he comes across the net, he flips the puck over Carey Price’s right pad, and caps it off with a 360 spin after colliding with Price. The Verizon Center went nuts, Joe Beninati couldn’t believe it. I jumped off my couch in pure tomfoolery. It was so amazing that Roman Hamrlik decided right then and there that he would one day play for the Caps. I mean, how does a human do that? How does someone have that much control over something that looks completely chaotic? Well, that’s just Ovie, he’s not like you and me. The magnificent play marked Ovies 42nd goal of the year, and the Caps went on to win the game 4-3 in a shootout.
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