Ovechkin joins NHL goals top 10 with hat trick in Caps win

AFP
Washington's Alex Ovechkin celebrates the last goal of his hat trick Saturday that lifted him into the NHL's top 10 all-time scorers and helped defeat the host New York Islanders 6-4 (AFP Photo/BRUCE BENNETT)
Washington's Alex Ovechkin celebrates the last goal of his hat trick Saturday that lifted him into the NHL's top 10 all-time scorers and helped defeat the host New York Islanders 6-4 (AFP Photo/BRUCE BENNETT)

New York (AFP) - Russian superstar Alex Ovechkin scored his second consecutive hat trick to crack the NHL's top 10 career goals list Saturday in Washington's 6-4 victory over the New York Islanders.

The 34-year-old left winger, who led the Capitals to the 2018 Stanley Cup, netted his 26th career hat trick to reach 692 career goals since his NHL debut in 2005.

That took Ovechkin past Mario Lemeiux's 10th-place total of 690 and moved him level with Steve Yzerman for ninth on the all-time list as the Capitals reached the NHL All-Star Game break with NHL highs of 32 wins and 69 points.

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Next in Ovechkin's path is Mark Messier in eighth on 694 all-time goals and just beyond the 700-goal milestone is 1980s Capitals star Mike Gartner on 708 in seventh.

Canadian legend Wayne Gretzky owns the all-time NHL goals record on 894.

Ovechkin, an eight-time NHL season goal scoring champion, has netted eight goals in the past three games to reach 34 this season, tying Toronto's Auston Matthews for second behind Boston's David Pastrnak on 36.

Ovechkin, now on pace for his ninth career 50-goal campaign, scored the first goal on a breakaway in the opening period, another in the third when the Capitals scored five goals to rally from a 4-1 deficit and the last into an empty net after the host Islanders had pulled their goaltender for an extra attacker.

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