With Only Six Games Left, the Race to 60 Is On

Zach EvansContributor IMarch 30, 2009

WASHINGTON - MARCH 27: Alex Ovechkin #8 of the Washington Capitals celebrates his first period goal against the Tampa Bay Lightning on March 27, 2009 at the Verizon Center in Washington, D.C. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)

At the beginning of the year, most of us pondered on how many goals the Great Eight would score this year. Some predicted that his production would be slightly down, some said slight up and some said around the same.

I was one that went higher and said this was the year that magical number 70 would be scored. Okay laugh it off but let's go serious now.

Ovechkin is sitting on 53 goals as of right now, with six games left to go. To get to the magical number of 60 for the second year in a row, Ovechkin would have to score a goal a game for the remaining six games and score a two-goal game in there somewhere.

Theoretically of course, Ovechkin could not score in a game, then score two or three the next night instead of scoring one a night. This seems more likely to me than scoring in every game although that's quite easily possible given the Capitals remaining six opponents.

The Caps start a three-game home-stand versus the Islanders, Sabres, and Thrashers respectively over the next couple of days.

Ovechkin is pretty much money for goals at home and with the Thrashers coming to town, Ovechkin gets to lick his chops on Kari Lehtonen, a goalie he has feasted on in his young career, scoring the most goals against him than any other goaltender in the NHL over his four-year career.


Ovechkin Goal Count with three games remaining: 57

I see him scoring at least two against the Thrashers and a split one goal each against Buffalo and New York.

The Caps are on the road the last three games and all against opponents Ovechkin has lit up this year. To close out the regular season the Caps play against Atlanta again, Tampa Bay and Florida.

Ovie has tormented all of these teams this year (I already documented his success against Atlanta) and I can see him scoring three goals in three games to close out the season, especially with him having high motivation to get to 60 goals for a second straight year.


Ovechkin Final Goal Count: 61

I see the Great Eight's final goal count at 61 goals at the end of the 2008-2009 season. I wanted to go a little higher, but I tried to keep it realistic for him to break the mark. My prediction is 61 for The Great Eight.