Photo Credit: Perry Nelson-USA TODAY Sports

Game Notes Oilers @ Canucks: More McDavid Magic

If you play men’s league hockey you’ve likely experienced it. Whether he played for your team or against you. A former NHL player, or even AHL player, shows up and dominates the game. They often end up looking to set guys up, rather than shoot, but once a period they dangle three or four guys and score.

When the guy is on your team you chuckle and marvel at his skill. When he’s on the opposition you sit on the bench and feel helpless at times.

Connor McDavid is that player, except he’s doing it against the best players in the world in the best league in the world. It’s stunning.

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Here is his stat line from his last seven games.

2-2-4 @ Vancouver
1-2-3 v. Calgary
0-0-0 v. Calgary
0-3-3 @ Winnipeg
3-1-4 @ Winnipeg
1-2-3 v. Montreal
1-2-3 v. Montreal

He has 20 points in seven games and in one game he had none. He is dominating the league similar to how Bobby Orr and Phil Esposito did in the 1970s, Wayne Gretzky did in the 1980s and Mario Lemieux did in the 1990s.

— McDavid has 91 points in 50 games. He’s on pace for 101. He has 31 goals and 60 assists giving him his fifth season of 30 goals/60 assists. He became the 15th player in NHL history to have five seasons of 30 goals and 60 assists. He joined a very elite group.

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Wayne Gretzky did it 14 times.
Jaromir Jagr: 9
Mario Lemieux: 8
Marcel Dionne, Phil Esposito, Peter Stastny and Bryan Trottier: 7
Bernie Federko, Guy Lafleur and Mark Messier: 6
Sidney Crosby, Bobby Orr, Joe Sakic, Denis Savard and McDavid: 5.

— McDavid is only the sixth player to have five consecutive 30 goals, 60 assist seasons.

Gretzky: 13
Lafleur and Stastny: 6
Trottier, Esposito and McDavid: 5

McDavid did it twice in shortened seasons. He is only 24 years of age. He has an excellent chance to pass Jagr with the second most 30G-60A seasons. Could he score 30-60 for the next eight seasons and catch Gretzky for most consecutive seasons with 30-60?

— Sidney Crosby had six 100-point seasons and four more 80+ point seasons. McDavid already has five 90+ seasons and needs nine points to reach 100 for the fourth time in his career. Injuries, and a lockout-shortened 2013 season, cost Crosby the chance to have nine 100 point campaigns. If McDavid stays healthy I think he has a very realistic chance to become only the third player in NHL history to have 10 seasons with 100+ points.

15: Gretzky
10: Lemieux
8: Dionne
7: Mike Bossy and Stastny.
6: Dale Hawerchuk, Jari Kurri, Steve Yzerman, Crosby, Esposito,  Lafleur, Messier, Orr, Sakic and Trottier.
5: Paul Coffey, Jagr and Savard.
4: Michel Goulet, Brett Hull, Adam Oates, Alex Ovechkin, Luc Robitaille and Teemu Selanne.

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McDavid needs nine points to become the 25th player in NHL history with at least four 100+ point seasons.

— McDavid’s recent offensive explosion has him in on 76.9% of the Oilers goals over the past seven games. He has 20 points. Edmonton has scored 26 goals. Crazy. McDavid has now been in on 55.8% of the Oilers goals this season. That is the second highest in NHL history behind Mario Lemieux’s 57.3% in 1989. Lemieux had 199 points and the Penguins scored 347, which was third most that season. Edmonton is currently ninth in the NHL with 3.26 goals/game.

— If McDavid didn’t have one goal this season he would still be seventh in league scoring with 60 assists.

— Leon Draisaitl won the scoring race by 13 points last year. He is having another really good season sitting in second place with 73 points. He is eight points ahead of third place Nathan MacKinnon, but Draisaitl’s season seems pedestrian because of McDavid. Ridiculous.

— Edmonton clinched a playoff spot last night and only need to go 1-4-1 in their final six games to clinch second place and home ice advantage in the opening round. Winnipeg lost their seventh in a row last night, while Montreal defeated Toronto in overtime. Montreal and Winnipeg are tied for third place with 57 points. Each team has five games remaining. The Jets are stumbling into the playoffs. Can they pull out of the ditch or are they destined to just drive right off the cliff?

— Mike Smith starts tonight. Since January 1st, 2020, Smith is 30-9-6 with a .919Sv% and 2.49 GAA. He is sixth in wins with 30, ninth in Sv% (among goalies with 30 starts) and 11th in GAA in 2.49. He has played well for the past 16 months. The 26 minutes in the playoffs, after four months off, seem like a pretty big outlier at this point. Will Ken Holland re-sign Smith for one year or look at other UFAs?

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— Anze Kopitar needs one point to become the 91st player to score 1,000 points. He will be the first Slovenian to score 1,000. Quite an accomplishment. Kopitar can reach the milestone tomorrow and when he does there will be eight countries with at least one 1,000-point player.

There are 63 Canadians with 1,000 points.
Ten Americans.
Russia and Sweden has five.
Slovakia has three.
Finland and the Czech Republic have two.

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