(Ed. Note: August is known to be a very quiet month in the hockey world. As we wait for September to arrive and training camps to begin, let’s learn a little history about all 30 teams. Behold, our summer A-Z series, in which we ask fans of all 30 teams to drop some knowledge on us! Add your own choices in the comments!) By: Becca Henschel , associate editor of Japers' Rink A. Alex Ovechkin Sure, he could have also been listed under O, or C for Captain, or S for studly, superb and stupendous… but it seems fitting that the guy who has almost single-handedly changed the course of the Washington Capitals should step into the lead-off spot. From breaking the rink on his first official NHL shift, to scoring 100+ points in his rookie season, to just scoring all of the goals all of the time – and usually doing so in the face of unyielding ( and often unfair ) criticism - Alex Ovechkin has been worth the cost of admission since making his debut a decade ago. There’s not much to say about Ovechkin that hasn’t already been said a million times ; he’s simply a phenomenal talent who is quickly joining the ranks of some of the game’s all-time great players . He doesn’t seem to be slowing down, either - so it’s not all that surprising that over the past two or three years, he’s taken hold of just about every record the franchise has to offer. In doing so, he’s merely making official what we’ve known for a long time: that Alex Ovechkin is simply the greatest to ever play for the Caps. (How do you not love this guy?!) B. Bondra, Peter Until Ovechkin came along, there was arguably no Cap as electrifying to watch as Peter Bondra. Known affectionately as “Bonzai”, Bondra cut an offensive swath through the League during the 1990s and early 2000s, cracking the 30-goal mark in nine of his 14 seasons in DC and finishing his illustrious career with 503 goals – 472 of which were scored in a Caps jersey (a franchise record that stood until Ovechkin predictably surpassed him last season).
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Legendary New York Islanders coach Al Arbour has died at the age of 82. An official cause of death was not given though Arbour had been battling dementia for quite some time. The Islanders confirmed Arbour’s passing on their website. Arbour coached the Islanders to four Stanley Cup championships from 1980-83. He was known for his ability to motivate, as well as his large glasses, which helped give him the nickname “Radar.” “Al will always be remembered as one of, if not, the greatest coaches ever to stand behind a bench in the history of the National Hockey League,” Islanders President and General Manager Garth Snow said. “The New York Islanders franchise has four Stanley Cups to its name, thanks in large part to Al’s incredible efforts. From his innovative coaching methods, to his humble way of life away from the game, Al is one of the reasons the New York Islanders are a historic franchise. On behalf of the entire organization, we send our deepest condolences to the entire Arbour family.” Said Islanders great Bryan Trottier in an interview with the New York Daily News last summer. “He was probably our father figure in the fact that we all respected him so much," Trottier said. "He had a great command of the room and at the same time he had a big man's presence. He had won a lot of Stanley Cups as a player with several different teams, he played with great players, so he always brought that credibility with him. For us to sit down with him one-on-one or when he was in front of us as a team, he had a great presence and we loved the man…we all love Al for all of the great times we had together and his leadership." Arbour was named Islanders coach in 1973-74. With the Islanders, he amassed a 740-537-223 record over 19 seasons. He won 119 career playoff games which is an NHL record for most with one club. Arbour ranks second in wins and games coached behind Scotty Bowman. He also coached 107 games with the St. Louis Blues, posting a 42-40-25 record. His final full season came in 1993-94. He was selected to the Hockey Hall of Fame as a builder in 1996. When Arbour left the Islanders, he had coached 1,499 games with New York, and returned to coach one in 2007-08 in order to hit the magical 1,500 mark. He was adored by Islanders fans and players alike. During his tenure he coached legends like Mike Bossy, Trottier and Denis Potvin. Born in Sudbury, Ontario on Nov. 1, 1932, Arbour played 626 games as an NHL defenseman. He had 12 goals, 58 assists and 70 points between stints with the Detroit Red Wings, Chicago Blackhawks, Toronto Maple Leafs and St. Louis Blues from 1953-54 through 1970-71. [ Yahoo Sports Fantasy Hockey: Sign up and join a league today! ] - - - - - - - Josh Cooper is an editor for Puck Daddy on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org or follow him on Twitter! Follow @joshuacooper MORE FROM YAHOO SPORTS