The Washington Capitals locked down all-time great Alex Ovechkin with a new contract on Tuesday afternoon. The deal will likely keep “the Great Eight” in the nation’s capital for the remainder of his career.
Ovechkin shared the news that he’d reached an agreement of terms with the Capitals on Tuesday. The 35-year-old left wing inked a five-year deal worth $47 million, according to an announcement from the team.
“Alex is the face of our franchise and is committed to this organization and this city,” Capitals general manager Brian MacLellan said in a statement. “Alex embodies what our franchise is all about, and we’re thrilled that he will continue his career in the Caps uniform for the next five years.”
The fresh contract will ease worries of any Capitals fan that still thought Ovechkin might switch teams this offseason after his name didn’t appear on Washington’s list of protected players for the recent NHL expansion draft. Per multiple reports, it was always in the Capitals’ plan to bring the elite goal scorer back in 2021 and beyond.
Considering the new deal will last five years, the 35-year-old Ovechkin will likely retire in Washington. Since he came into the league, he’s spent his entire career with the Capitals and has become one of the city’s most beloved superstar athletes.
The response to Ovechkin’s contract was overwhelmingly positive as NHL analysts and fans alike respected the all-time great’s decision to stay with one team for the entirety of his career.
— Alex Ovechkin (@ovi8) July 27, 2021
𝐅𝐎𝐑𝐄𝐕𝐄𝐑 𝐀 𝐂𝐀𝐏𝐈𝐓𝐀𝐋.
The Washington Capitals have re-signed captain Alex Ovechkin to a five-year, $47.5 million contract.
— Washington Capitals (@Capitals) July 27, 2021
When you think about it, Ovechkin + Caps is everything you want in your fav sports team.
Top pick exceeds expectations as a generational talent. Wins every meaningful indiv award. Wins a Cup with a spectacular celebration. Signs extension to remain for his entire career.
— Neil Greenberg (@ngreenberg) July 27, 2021
Usually, when veteran players sign contracts above market value, we're like "don't pay for past performance!"
That goes out the window when it's Alex Ovechkin, the past performance is 730 goals and he's made the Caps an incalculable amount of money since 2005. Oh, and that Cup.
— Greg Wyshynski (@wyshynski) July 27, 2021
I'm told Alex Ovechkin was paying homage to Michael Jordan with this announcement 😉
Deal is for five years x $9.5 million. It was a priority for Ovi to show his commitment to DC. https://t.co/rRiFyGix4V
— Emily Kaplan (@emilymkaplan) July 27, 2021
Alex Ovechkin is absolutely breaking Wayne Gretzky’s goal record. Book it.
— Travis Tuthill (@tuthill_travis) July 27, 2021
Ovechkin scored just 24 goals and tallied 18 assists in his 45 games played last year, but is just a season removed from leading the NHL in goals scored. He’s accomplished the feat nine times in his career in Washington.
Ovechkin is already the Capitals franchise leader in games played, goals and points, but he’ll have his sights set on smashing a well-known league record before he decides to hang up his skates for good. The 35-year-old needs just 165 more goals to reach Wayne Gretzky’s all-time record of most goals scored.
With his new deal lasting five years, Ovechkin will need to average 33 goals per year to hit that benchmark. If “the Great Eight” can continue to play at a high level, Gretzky’s mark is well within striking distance.