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The Noon Number: Goal-Happy Birth Day

A look at a date that produced some pretty great goal-scorers

Washington Capitals v Toronto Maple Leafs - Game Six

2383 - Number of goals scored by NHLers born on September 17, a group which includes both Alex Ovechkin and Auston Matthews (and Caps’ assistant coach Scott Arniel). That is the most goals scored by a group of players born on a single date (we think!), surpassing even the hallowed days of birth for such goal-scoring legends as Wayne Gretzky, Pavel Bure/Gordie Howe (both born on March 31), and Jaromir Jagr.

Ovechkin and Matthews have combined for 508 goals since Matthews made his NHL debut in the 2016-17 season, with Matthews having scored 257 to Ovechkin’s 251 over that span. The two snipers lead the League in total goals and goals per game since that 2016-17 season (despite the fact that Ovechkin has exactly 12 years on Matthews).

When going head to head, Ovechkin holds the edge, with a stat line of 8-8-16 in 11 games vs. Matthews’ 5-6-11. Matthews did outscore Ovechkin in their one playoff meeting, putting up 4-1-5 in the six-game 2017 series against Ovechkin’s 3-0-3... but of course we know how the series ended up, so Ovechkin gets the win there as well.

The two snipers will face off again tonight, the second of three meetings this season.