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NHL: Ovechkin form shouldn't be a surprise

Washington Capitals head coach Peter Laviolette says the goal-scoring form of captain Alex Ovechkin shouldn't be a surprise.

The Capitals, 18/1 to win the Stanley Cup, needed two goals from Ovechkin to beat the Ottawa Senators 3-2 in overtime on Saturday, with Washington joint-fourth in the Metropolitan Division with a 23-10-9 record.

Ovechkin leading the way

The double took the Russian's goal tally to 29 for the season, which joint-leads the NHL along with New York Rangers' Chris Kreider, while Ovechkin also joint-holds the most points mark (58).

Only Mario Lemieux has recorded more points at the mid-point of a season when 36 or older, when he achieved 68 (20 goals, 48 assists) in 41 games with the Pittsburgh Penguins in 2002/03 at 37.

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Ovechkin has won the Rocket Richard Trophy as the NHL's top goal-scorer nine times and is fourth in NHL history with 759 goals, behind Jaromir Jagr (766), Gordie Howe (801) and Wayne Gretzky (894).

On top of his success in the NHL regular season, Ovechkin has scored 71 times in the play-offs in 141 appearances and won the Conn Smythe Trophy as the most valuable player in the play-offs, leading the Capitals to the Stanley Cup in 2018.

After this season, Ovechkin will have four more remaining on a five-year, $47.5 million contract which he signed with the Capitals in the recent off-season.

Laviolette said to "He started strong and the year he's had to this point, I don't think it should completely catch people off-guard.

"You're talking about somebody who's made a living at scoring goals and being a leader and helping this franchise and this organization maintain a level of really good play and experience a lot of successes. He's at the forefront of that."

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