Auston Matthews Is Chasing Alexander Ovechkin

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Auston Matthews is one of the best players in the NHL, and currently leads the NHL in goals with 29 and is trying to capture his third Maurice "Rocket" Richard Trophy for the league's top goal scorer.

The Toronto Maple Leafs goal-scoring record is 420 goals held by Mats Sundin. With 328 goals as of January 2nd, 2024, Auston Matthews only needs 93 goals to set a new franchise record.

However, Sundin is not the only player Matthews is chasing. (Stats from

Alexander Ovechkin is chasing the NHL record for most goals scored. He has 830 career goals, 64 goals behind Wayne Gretzky's record of 894 goals. Depending on how many goals Ovechkin can finish with this season, he may only need one more season to break the long-standing record. The closer Ovechkin gets, the more excitement builds.

Auston Matthews Is Chasing Alexander Ovechkin

If you look back at the pace at which Ovechkin accumulated his 830 goals, you will notice that Matthews is on a faster pace.

Through their first 513 games, Matthews has 328 goals compared to 318 goals by Ovechkin. Should Matthews be able to keep his current pace, then by the time he reaches 1,382 games where Ovechkin is now, Matthews will have 883 goals.

That's 53 more goals than Ovechkin, so whatever goal total Ovechkin ends his career with, it's safe to say that Matthews is capable of catching it and passing it.

Matthews is on pace for 69 goals this season, which would be a career-best. His current best is 60 goals, which he scored in the 2021-22 season to win his second Maurice "Rocket" Richard Trophy. The 26-year-old Matthews would finish the season with a career total of 368 goals if he does, in fact, score 69 goals this season.

The Leafs top goal scorer will likely score his 500th career goal during the 2026-27 season at the age of 29. Ovechkin scored his 500th goal at the age of 30, so Matthews has a real shot of chasing Ovechkin's overall goal record someday. We will have to wait and see what Ovechkin's record will be by the time he stops playing. I think he will try to become the first player in NHL history to score 900 goals.

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As a Leafs fan, I hope to see Matthews become the 2nd player in NHL history to reach 900 goals, and I hope to see him claim the NHL's all-time goal scoring title.