Nearing 5,000 Career Shots, One Season Sticks Out for Ovechkin

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Posted December 5, 2018

(Caps Outsider)

Alex Ovechkin shoots the puck far more than any other player in the NHL. He’s led the league in shots in 11 out of 13 seasons he’s played (not including this one). Now, he’s on the verge of getting his 5,000th career shot on net, one of nine players to reach that number. After Tuesday’s game, he’s currently sitting at 4,999.

Just like his 65-goal season in 2007-2008, Ovechkin has one season in particular where his numbers were inflated, even by his standards. He passed 500 shots on goal for a season on April 5, 2009, and ended up with 528 shots on net. That’s second all-time to Phil Esposito, who once had 550. That season, Ovechkin had 56 goals, the second best total of his career. Yet he scored his 65 goals on 446 shots a season earlier. Ovechkin’s shooting percentage in his year with 526 also happened to be one of the lowest totals in his career. Weird.

Unlike other statistical milestones, like Ovechkin’s all-time goal chase, his shot stats are mainly interesting because of how many more he’s able to take than most players, and that’s about it. That said, we have no doubt that one day – perhaps in three seasons – he’ll top this list.

Here are the all-time leaders:

  1. Ray Bourque 6209
  2. Jaromir Jagr 5637
  3. Marcel Dionne 5363
  4. Phil Esposito 5166
  5. Al MacInnis 5157
  6. Mike Gartner 5090
  7. Wayne Gretzky 5088
  8. Brendan Shanahan 5086
  9. Alex Ovechkin 4999