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Washington Capitals All-Time Goal Scoring Leaders
The Washington Capitals have been an NHL franchise since 1974, but have no championships to boast, despite 20 playoff appearances. That doesn’t mean they haven’t been close or had great teams before though, and now they look as good as ever with phenom Alex Ovechkin leading the way. Here is a look at the Capitals’ all-time leading goal-scorers to date:
Peter Bondra (472)—Right win Peter Bondra played most of his career in Washington, from 1990 to 2004, and he leads the franchise all-time with 472 goals in a Caps’ uniform. Bondra scored a career high 52 goals twice, in the 1997-98 season when the Capitals reached the Stanley Cup Finals, and also in 1995-96. He had his career high in points in 1992-93 with 85 (37 goals, career best 48 assists).
Mike Gartner (397)—Hall of Fame right wing Mike Gartner began his career in the WHA and then played for the Capitals in the NHL from 1979 to 1989 before becoming somewhat of a journeyman, but he ranks second in team history with 397 goals. During a stretch in the early ‘80’s, Gartner was one of the most feared players in the NHL and for good reason. His best season came in 1984-85, when Gartner had career high numbers in goals (50), assists (52) and total points (102).
Alex Ovechkin (224)—Left wing Alex Ovechkin is one of the NHL’s most exciting players these days, and he has only been in the league since 2005. Ovechkin already ranks third in Capitals’ history with 224 goals and if he stays with the team, will likely top this list in just a few years. Ovechkin had his best season to date in 2007-08, when he scored a career best and NHL-leading 65 goals, with 47 assists and career high 112 total points. He also improved from a minus-19 the year before to a +28 that season.
Mike Ridley (218)—Center Mike Ridley played for the Capitals from 1986 to 1994, and he ranks fourth in franchise history with 218 goals. Ridley had his best season for the Caps in 1988-89 with a career high 41 goals, along with 48 assists and 89 total points (also career best).
Bengt-Ake Gustafsson (196)—Right wing Bengt-Ake Gustufsson was with Washington his entire career, from 1979 to 1989, and ranks fifth in the team’s history with 196 goals. Gustafsson had his best season in 1983-84 when he scored a career high 32 goals with 43 assists and 75 total points (tied career best). Gustafsson is now coach of the Swedish national team as I write this in 2009.