Connor McDavid became the 11th member of the Edmonton Oilers to score 40 goals in a season, and he is the first since Petr Klima scored 40 goals in 70 games in 1991. Can you name the other nine?
It has been 21 NHL seasons since the Oilers had a 40-goal man and McDavid’s tally versus the Blue Jackets ended the longest active drought by an NHL franchise when it comes to 40-goal scorers.
1. Since 1991, there have been 218 occasions where a player scored 40 goals, and it was done by 100 different players. None of them were Edmonton Oilers. Prior to McDavid scoring on Tuesday, the Oilers had the longest drought, 26 seasons, without a 40-goal scorer.
2. Now two organizations own the longest streak, 23 seasons. Can you name them? (Answer below.)
3. Alex Ovechkin has had the most 40-goals seasons since 1991/1992, with nine. Teemu Selanne had seven, while Brendan Shanahan, Pavel Bure and Ilya Kovalchuk had six. Kovalchuk will return to the NHL next season. Can he score 40 again? The last time he scored 40 was in 2010. If he scores 40 again he would tie Gordie Howe and Eric Staal (who did it this season) for having the longest gap between 40-goal seasons, nine years.
4. Pittsburgh fans have witnessed ten players score 40+ goals twenty-two times since 1992. Jaromir Jagr had five, Mario Lemieux four, Kevin Stevens and Evgeni Malkin three, Sidney Crosby two and James Neal, Joe Mullen, Alex Kovalev, Petr Nedved and Rick Tocchet each scored 40+ once.
5. Since 1992 eleven players were traded during their 40+ goal season: Craig Simpson (56), Dave Andreychuk (54), Brendan Shanahan (47), Mark Recchi (43), Glen Murray and Kovalchuk (41) and Pierre Turgeon, Theo Fleury, Teemu Selanne, Bill Guerin and Bob Kudelski (40).
6. Speaking of Kudelski, he had a career year in 1994. He had 26 goals in 42 games with Ottawa before being traded to Florida for Evgeny Davydov, Scott Levins, a sixth round pick in 1994 (Mike Gaffney) and a fourth rounder in 1995 (Kevin Bolibruck). Kudelski scored 14 goals with the Panthers to reach 40. He never scored more than 24 in any other season of his career.
7. Six players have already reached 40 goals this season: Ovechkin (45), Patrik Laine (43), Malkin (42), McDavid, Staal and William Karlsson (40), but we could see as many as ten, which would be the most since the NHL also had ten in 2007/2008. Anders Lee and Tyler Seguin have 39, while Nikita Kucherov and Nathan MacKinnon have 38.
8. Ron Sedlbauer, 40 goals in 1978, was the first player to score 40 goals for the Vancouver Canucks, and eight others have since, including Tony Tanti, Pavel Bure and Markus Naslund three times, and Darcy Rota, Alex Mogilny, Todd Bertuzzi, Daniel Sedin and Ryan Kesler once.
9. The other Oilers to score 40+ include Wayne Gretzky (9 times), Jari Kurri (7), Glenn Anderson (4), Mark Messier (3), Paul Coffey (2) and Jimmy Carson (49), Blair MacDonald (46), Mike Krushelnyki (43) and Craig Simpson (43). Simpson actually scored 56 goals in 1988, but he had 43 in 59 games with the Oilers after scoring 13 with the Penguins before being traded for Coffey.
10. Gretzky holds the NHL record with 12 consecutive seasons of 40+ goals. He had 718 goals in his first 12 seasons in 925 games. Had he retired after his first 12 seasons he still would have finished fourth overall in goals behind Howe (801), Jagr (766), Brett Hull (744) and Marcel Dionne (731). He still would be first in points, however, with 2,142. He averaged 2.31 points-per-game in his first 12 seasons.
11. Oilers fans, you can watch draft pick Tyler Benson tonight on Sportsnet in game four of his first round WHL series between his Vancouver Giants and the Victoria Royals. For fun, keep an eye on #22, Noah Gregor, for Victoria as well. I think he’s pretty good.
***The Montreal Canadiens and Los Angeles Kings now own the record for longest drought without a 40-goal scorer. They last had one in 1993/1994 when Luc Robitaille scored 44 for the Kings and Vincent Damphousse had 40 for the Habs.***
Here is the timeline for the other NHL teams.
Arizona: 1998, Keith Tkachuk
Nashville: They have never had a 40-goal scorer in their history since 1998/1999.
Florida: 2001, Pavel Bure
Colorado: 2003, Milan Hejduk
Boston: 2003, Glen Murray
Carolina: 2006, Eric Staal.
Buffalo: 2007, Tomas Vanek
NY Islanders: 2007, Jason Blake
St.Louis: 2008, Brad Boyes
Ottawa: 2008, Dany Heatley and Daniel Alfredsson
Philadelphia: 2009, Jeff Carter
New Jersey: 2009, Zach Parise
Detroit: 2009, Marian Hossa
Columbus: 2009, Rick Nash
Calgary: 2011, Jarome Iginla
Vancouver: 2011, Daniel Sedin and Ryan Kesler
Anaheim: 2014, Corey Perry
San Jose: 2014, Joe Pavelski
NY Rangers: 2015, Rick Nash
Chicago: 2016, Patrick Kane
Dallas: 2016, Jamie Benn
Tampa Bay: 2017, Nikita Kucherov
Toronto: 2017, Auston Matthews
Minnesota: 2018, Eric Staal
Vegas: 2018, William Karlsson
Pittsburgh: 2018, Evgeni Malkin
Winnipeg: 2018, Patrik Laine
Washington: 2018 Alex Ovechkin
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Source: Jason Gregor, Verified Twitter Account, 3/29/2018 – 10:00 am MST