Capitals’ Alex Ovechkin scores 742nd career goal, passes Brett Hull for fourth place on all-time goals list

Washington Capitals star Alex Ovechkin continues to place his name among the all-time greats. In Friday’s game against the Columbus Blue Jackets, Ovechkin scored the 742nd goal of his NHL career and passed Brett Hull for sole possession of fourth place on the league’s all-time goals list.

Ovechkin got the puck past Blue Jackets goaltender Joonas Korpisalo to tie the score at 1 at the 10:19 mark of the first period. Evgeny Kuznetsov and Tom Wilson assisted on the play. 

Shortly after Ovechkin’s record-setting goal, the Capitals tweeted a video of Hull offering kudos to the 36-year-old Russian who just passed him on the all-time goal scoring list. 

“Alex, congratulations on moving into No. 4 on the all-time goal scoring list,” Hull said. “I have a great friend, Wayne Gretzky, and he has a saying whenever he makes a long putt or a great shot on the golf course. And he says you have to earn your nickname. Well, Alex, The Great 8, you have lived up to your nickname and more. Congratulations again. Keep climbing that ladder, and I wish you nothing but success. Way to go.”

Ovechkin now has 12 goals on the season and has registered a point in all but two games. On Monday, Ovechkin tied Hull with career goal No. 741 on a deflection off of a point shot from defenseman Dmitry Orlov in the Capitals’ 5-3 win over the Buffalo Sabres.

Ovechkin entered the 2021-22 season with 730 goals, which was good for sixth place on the all-time goals list. The Capitals winger quickly staked his claim to fifth place on that list as he passed Marcel Dionne with a two-goal performance against the New York Rangers in the season opener.

Now Ovechkin has passed the likes of Dionne and Hull, but those might not be the last players he passes this season. Jaromir Jagr sits in third place with 766 goals, and he is the next player Ovechkin will have the opportunity to pass.

Ovechkin would need 26 more goals in order to pass Jagr. As long as he stays healthy, getting at least 30 more goals this season is an easily attainable mark for Ovechkin, who has placed himself in the MVP conversation once again with 22 points thus far.

After all, the Capitals winger has scored at least 48 goals in three of the past four seasons. Of course, the league was limited to just 56 games in 2021, so Ovechkin only had 24 goals last season. 

Ovechkin did sign a five-year contract extension with the Capitals in the offseason. With that in mind, he will have every opportunity to pass Wayne Gretzky’s all-time goals record of 894.