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Alex Ovechkin favored to tie Gordie Howe during homestand

Alex Ovechkin accelerated his skate toward history with a hat trick in Tuesday’s win over Chicago to reach 800 career goals. The 37-year-old is now just one shy of tying Gordie Howe for second-most all time as the Washington Capitals begin a three-game homestand with Thursday night’s game against the Dallas Stars. When, not if, is the question oddsmakers are asking about pulling even with Howe. Here are some example odds on the Capitals’ next six opponents.

The favorite is the Toronto Maple Leafs at +175, who the Capitals play on Saturday. The homestand concludes against Detroit Red Wings on Monday.

Alex Ovechkin Goal 802 Scored Against:

–Toronto Maple Leafs (Dec. 17), +175 –Detroit Red Wings (Dec. 19), +225 –Dallas Stars (Dec. 15), +350 –Ottawa Senators (Dec. 22), +500 –Winnipeg Jets (Dec. 23), +1000 –New York Rangers (Dec. 27), +1400

The sportsbook is also offering odds on whether the historic goal will come at even strength (+115) or on a power play (-155), and in what period the goal will come: 1st (+250), 2nd (+200), 3rd (+175) or Overtime (+500). “It’s the best company you ever can imagine since you start playing hockey to be connected to Gordie,” Ovechkin said. “Eight hundred. … Without my teammates, without the organization, the fans, my family, I would never get that number and I would never talk to you right now about those numbers.” Once Ovechkin reaches Howe’s mark, all eyes will turn to his pursuit of Wayne Gretzky’s all-time mark of 894.

A lot still has to go right for Ovechkin to reach “The Great One’s” record, but he is offered

at -150 to break the record compared to +110 that he won’t.

What appears to be clear is that if it happens, it will happen in a Capitals uniform.

Ovechkin signed a five-year extension before the 2021 season and Capitals owner Ted Leonsis said he promised his star captain that he would not rebuild the club while Ovechkin is chasing the record.

“He’s very cognizant of doing this the right way,” Leonsis said recently. “Alex said, ‘I’m not gonna be a third-line guy playing 8-10 minutes a game (where you) trot me out on the power play and let me score my goals. That’s not what I want to do. Promise me you’ll keep the team competitive (and) a playoff team.’ “And he promised to come in shape all the time and not be fixated on the record but be fixated on winning another Stanley Cup.” That hasn’t halted conjecture about a potential move from the only franchise Ovechkin has known since being selected by the Capitals with the No. 1 overall pick in the 2004 draft.

Here are odds on all potential 31 NHL destinations.

Alex Ovechkin Next Team Odds: Florida Panthers, +4-1 N.Y. Rangers, +5-1 Boston Bruins, +6-1 Los Angeles Kings, +7-1 Tampa Bay Lighting, +7-1 Minnesota Wild, +10-1 Dallas Stars, +12-1 St. Louis Blues, +14-1 Detroit Red Wings, +18-1 Colorado Avalanche, +25-1 Toronto Maple Leafs, +25-1 Vegas Golden Knights, +25-1 Anaheim Ducks, +33-1 Carolina Hurricanes, +33-1 Montreal Canadiens, +33-1 New Jersey Devils, +33-1 Edmonton Oilers, +45-1 San Jose Sharks, +45-1 Chicago Blackhawks, +50-1 Nashville Predators, +50-1 N.Y. Islanders, +50-1 Pittsburgh Penguins, +50-1 Calgary Flames, +75-1 Seattle Kraken, +75-1 Vancouver Canucks, +75-1 Winnipeg Jets, +75-1 Arizona Coyotes, +100-1 Buffalo Sabres, +100-1 Columbus Blue Jackets, +100-1 Ottawa Senators, +100-1 Philadelphia Flyers, +100-1

–Field Level Media


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