Top Helper: John Carlson Becomes the Franchise Assist Leader Among Defensemen

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Jana Chytoliva/Freestye Photography/Getty Images

While Alex Ovechkin passing Mark Messier for eighth all-time in Goals Scored was the major storyline in the Capitals’ Friday night victory against the Ottawa Senators, defenseman John Carlson made history in his own right, becoming the Capitals’ franchise assist leader among defensemen. 

Carlson became the franchise leader on the assist that, ironically enough, set up Ovechkin’s own historic tally, an empty-net goal in the final minute of regulation.

Carlson, who entered the 2019-20 season with 313 helpers, has had himself a banner season, having scored 13 goals and added 49 assists for 62 points in 52 games played and has become the front-runner for the Norris Trophy. During his strong season, Carlson has passed Capitals defensive greats Kevin Hatcher and Calle Johansson to become the top helper in franchise history among blueliners. Carlson sits second behind Johannson in Points (465 to Johannson’s 474) and first in goals with 149. This season, the 27th overall pick in 2008 ranks fourth among all NHL rearguards in goals, and leads in assists and points, while averaging 24:41 of ice time a night for Head Coach Todd Reirden.

By Michael Fleetwood

About Michael Fleetwood

Michael Fleetwood was born into a family of diehard Capitals fans and has been watching games as long as he can remember. He was born the year the Capitals went to their first Stanley Cup Final, and is a diehard Caps fan, the owner of the very FIRST Joe Beninati jersey and since then, has met Joe himself. His favorite player became former Capital Nate Schmidt after he met Schmidt in a Hershey hotel while in Hershey PA to see the Bears play, shortly after Schmidt was injured during a conditioning stint. Michael is also a fan of the Pittsburgh Steelers and Baltimore Orioles, and enjoys photography, watching WildEarth TV's SafariLive live safaris, and watching animals in his spare time. (Photo by Adam Vingan in 2014 at the Capitals Development Camp).
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