Washington Capitals superstar Alex Ovechkin put pen to paper on a five-year, $47.5 million contract in July that he hopes will allow him to ultimately notch his 895th career NHL goal and surpass living legend Wayne Gretzky (894) as the league's all-time leading scorer.
Ovechkin's main on-the-ice rival is rooting for him to make history.
Per Greg Wyshynski of ESPN, Pittsburgh Penguins captain and future Hall of Famer Sidney Crosby said during Thursday's NHL players media tour he's cheering for Ovechkin, who currently has 730 goals, to finish his career atop that category in the record books.
"I hope he does. I told him today that I hope he does," Crosby admitted. "It would be awesome. He's in range."
we are sure everyone will react very calmly to this photo pic.twitter.com/4LRQ8QyCHZ— Washington Capitals (@Capitals) September 16, 2021
Happy captain, happy fans pic.twitter.com/emNrUsO4IC— Pittsburgh Penguins (@penguins) September 16, 2021
"Yeah, obviously, but I try to not think about it," Ovechkin added about pursuing Gretzky's mark, according to Tom Gulitti of the NHL's website. "I try to go out there and play and try to do my best."
Ovechkin turns 36 on Friday, so averaging over 30 goals across what could be his final five seasons will be no easy task even for such a prolific scorer. It's unclear if he'll play beyond his current contract if he hasn't reached 895 career goals by the time the deal expires.