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Random Stats and the Worst Award Votes in NHL History

Good afternoon Nation readers. Do you have plans tonight? Most of you were planning to watch the Oilers/Lightning game tonight I’m sure, so we’ve come up with a different option to fill your time. But before we get to that, let’s look at some random NHL stats and some of the biggest head-scratching player awards.

Under the category of DID YOU KNOW?

The most productive and efficient goal-scoring season in NHL history belongs to Charlie Simmer. In 1981 he scored 56 goals in 65 games on 171 shots. He had a shooting percentage of 32.8%.

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The best single-season SH% in NHL history (since 1960 when they started tracking individual shots on goal) and at least 35 games (half a season, which was 70 games then), belongs to one of the toughest men in NHL history.

In 1996 Dave Brown had a 37.5 SH%. He had three goals on eight shots in 37 games with the San Jose Sharks. The top-five include:

1993 Darin Kimble: Seven goals on 20 shots in 55 games for the Bruins and a 35SH%.
1986 Dave Lumley: Eleven goals on 33 shots in 46 games for the Oilers and a 33.3SH%.
2004 Matt Johnson: Seven goals on 21 shots in 51 games for the Wild and a 33.3SH%.
1981 Charlie Simmer. Fifty-six goals on 171 shots in 65 games for the Kings and a 32.8SH%.

LA-LA-LAFONTAINE…

While searching this stat I came across Pat Lafontaine’s ridiculous start to his NHL career. In the 1983/1984 season he was 18 years old and playing for the US Olympic team. When the Olympics finished in late February, Lafontaine joined the New York Islanders. He turned 19 on February 22nd, and made his NHL debut on February 29th. In his first 15 NHL games, and the Islanders’ final 15 that season, Lafontaine scored 13 goals and 19 points. He had 13 goals on only 35 shots (37.1SH%).

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In the modern era, I couldn’t find a player with a more productive goal scoring in the first 15 games of their NHL career.

Alex Ovechkin had 12-5-17 in his first 15 games and finished his rookie year with 52 goals.
Teemu Selanne scored 11-9-20 in his first 15 and he finished his rookie season with 76 goals.
Joe Nieuwendyk talled 10-2-12 in his first 15 NHL games, spread out over two seasons.
Mike Bossy had 9-9-18.
Wayne Gretzky scored 6-14-20.
Mario Lemiuex had 4-15-19.
Connor McDavid had 6-11-17.
Auston Matthews scored four goals in his first NHL game and finished with 6-6-12 in his first 15 games.

The most impressive aspect of Lafontaine’s NHL start, was he entered in final six weeks of the season. The pace of play is much higher than than at the start of a season.

The next season he scored 19 goals in 67 games on 172 shots. The heater he was on to start his career is one of the greatest we’ve ever seen.

SHOTS FIRED…

Only nine players in NHL history have fired 400+ shots on goal in a season.

Phil Esposito holds the NHL record at 550 set in 1971. He also had 426 and 411 in 1972 and 1973.
Alex Ovechkin had 528, 446 and 425 in 2009, 2008 and 2006.
Paul Kairya fired 429 shots in 1999.
Bobby Hull had 414 in 1969.
Bobby Orr, a defenceman, had 413 in 1970.
Brett Hull had 411 in 1992.
Pavel Bure fired 407 in 1993.
Jaromir Jagr had 403 in 1996.

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Ovechkin’s had three other seasons of 398, 395 and 392 in 2016, 2015 and 2007 respectively.

Orr dominates SOG among D-men with five of the top-10.

He had seasons with 413, 392, 384, 384 and 353.
Ray Bourque has the third, fourth and 10th most in a season with 390, 386 and 344.
Brent Burns is in the eighth slot with 353 in 2016.
Dustin Byfuglien had the ninth most with 347 in 2011.

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Only three times in NHL history has a D-man scored 40 goals.

Paul Coffey had 48 in 1986 on 308 shots.
Orr scored 46 in 1975 on 384 shots.
Coffey had 40 in 1984 on 259 shots.

Mike Green (31 in 2009) and Kevin Hatcher (34 in 1993) are the only D-men to surpass 30 goals since 1986. I think Coffey’s single-season goal record will never be broken.

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Trivia Time…

Try not to look up the answers. See how many you know?.**Answers at the bottom of the article.**

1. Which two goalies have the best career Sv% (minimum of 50 starts) in NHL history at .922Sv%?

2. Ron Hextall owns the NHL record for most penalty minutes in a season by a goalie. How many PIMs did he have?

3. Which active goalie has the most career shutouts? Bonus if you know how many.

4. Since the NHL expanded to 12 teams in 1967/1968, which current NHL franchise has averaged the most goals for/game?

5. And which current team has averaged the most goals against/game since 1968?

PASS HAPPY…

Only three players in NHL history have recorded 100 assists in a season.

Wayne Gretzky holds the top-seven slots with seasons of 163, 135, 125, 122, 121, 120 and 118.
He and Mario Lemieux are tied for eighth with 114.
Gretzky has the 10th and 11th slots with 109 assists in 1981 and 1988 (64 games).
And he is tied with Orr for 12th at 102.

Gretzky did it 11 times, while Orr and Lemieux did it once. Unreal.

The next closest were Lemieux with 98 in 1988, Adam Oates had 97 in 1993 and Joe Thornton had 96 in 2006.

The top-10 assist seasons since 2000 are:

Thornton with 96 in 2006 and 92 in 2007.
Nikita Kucherov had 87 in 2019.
Sidney Crosby with 84 in 2007.
Henrik Sedin had 83 in 2010.
Evgeni Malkin had 78 in 2009.
Peter Forsberg had 77 in 2003.
McDavid (2019) and H. Sedin (2011) each had 75.
Marc Savard had 74 in 2007.

Leon Draisaitl was on pace for 77 this season with 67 in 71 games prior to the league postponing the season.

SHOOTING GALLERY…

Gump Worsley — what a great name — faced the most shots in a single NHL season. He holds down the top-two spots, followed by Roberto Luongo. Those 2004 and 2006 Panthers teams were not very good. Here is a list of the top-20 most shots faced in a season.

NHL AWARDS GIVEN TO THE WRONG PERSON…

We could have a lot of debate here, so feel free to add anyone you felt was overlooked.

Two stand out to me.

The most glaring one was in 1986. Gretzky set the NHL record with 215 points and the single-season assist record with 163. He led the league with 215 points. Mario Lemieux was second with 141.

Gretzky had 143 EV points that season, while Lemieux had 75. Gretzky had 18 shorthanded points, Lemieux had zero.

Gretzky was 77 points ahead of his closest teammate, Paul Coffey, while Lemieux had 58 more points than teammate Mike Bullard.

The Great One was pointless in only three games all season. He had 61 multi-point games.

21 x two points.
19 x three points.
12 x four points.
4 x five points.
3 x six points.
2 x seven points
He had 199 points in those 61 games alone.

Lemieux had 44 multi-point games and was pointless in 14 games.
22 x two points.
15 x three points.
5x four points.
1 x five points.
1 x six points.
He had 120 points in those 44 games.

The NHL players voted Lemieux the Lester B. Pearson Award as the league’s most outstanding player.

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Back then the players weren’t as friendly off the ice as they are today, so I’m sure some were tired of Gretzky shredding them. He had won the award the previous four seasons when he scored 212, 196, 205 and 208 points.

But voter fatigue might not have been it, because only three years later, Lemieux was oddly overlooked as well by his peers.

Gretzky won the award in 1987 and Lemieux won it in 1988.

Then in 1989, Lemieux had the highest point total of his career when he tallied 85 goals and 199 points. Gretzky tallied 168 points in his first season with the Los Angeles Kings. But the players voted Steve Yzerman as the most outstanding player.

Lemieux averaged 2.62 points/game to Yzerman’s 1.94. Lemieux had 85 more points than his closest teammate (Rob Brown, 114), while Yzerman was 62 points ahead of Gerard Gallant (93).

Lemieux had 49 multi-point games.
14 x two points.
9 x three points.
14 x four points.
8 x five points.
1 x six points.
1 x seven points
2 x eight points.
He had 180 points in those 49 games.

Yzerman had 48 multi-point games.
23 x two points.
16 x three points.
7 x four points.
1 x five points.
1 x six points.
He had 133 in those 48 games.

Lemieux had the fifth most productive season in NHL history, but didn’t win.

In any sort of voting category, the most deserving, or best candidate doesn’t always win.

Let me know which player you felt got ripped off from winning a major award, and why?

WATCH PARTY….

Most of us would have either been going to the Oilers/Lighting game tonight or watching it on TV and commenting in the Oilersnation comment section or on Twitter. I miss the games, but also the interaction online. So Jason Strudwick, Connor Halley, Tom Gazzola and me came up with an idea where we could fill that void.

We started the #1260MovieWatch. It will be every Tuesday and Friday nights at 8 p.m. MST. We pick a different movie to watch on Netflix. Tonight’s winner, via our Twitter and FB polls, is Superbad.

Join us. Watch the movie and comment on Twitter with #1260MovieWatch. Comment like you would a hockey game, with random facts, things you like or dislike.

If you want to nominate an action flick for next Tuesday (and it is on Netflix) do so in the comment sections or reach out via Twitter.

TRIVIA ANSWERS…

1. Which two goalies have the best career Sv% (minimum of 50 starts) in NHL history at .922Sv%.
Tukka Rask and Dominic Hasek.

2. Ron Hextall owns the NHL record for most penalty minutes in a season by a goalie. How many PIMs did he have?
113 in 1989. He also had 104 and 89 in 1988 and 1987 respectively. Tom Barrasso is fourth with 70 in 1989.

3. Which active goalie has the most career shutouts? Bonus if you know how many.
Henrik Lundqvist with 64. Marc-Andre Fleury is second with 61. 

4. Since the NHL expanded to 12 teams in 1967/1968 which current NHL franchise has averaged the most goals for/game?
Boston has scored 3.43 goals/game. Montreal is second at 3.34, Edmonton third at 3.31 and Pittsburgh fourth at 3.30.

5. And which current team has averaged the most goals against/game since 1968?
Pittsburgh at 3.36, followed by Toronto at 3.34 and ARI/WPG at 3.32.

Have a great weekend and stay safe and healthy.

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