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Photo Credit: © Perry Nelson-USA TODAY Sports

Leon Draisaitl is on pace to have the second-best season in NHL history in terms of adjusted points

The start to Leon Draisaitl’s season has been absurd.

He leads the league with 18 goals in 18 games and he’s also leading the way with 36 points.

If he keeps up this pace, Draisaitl will finish the 2021-22 season with 82 goals and 164 points, something the league hasn’t seen since the high-flying days of the 1980s and early 1990s. He would also become the third player ever to break the 160-point plateau, joining Wayne Gretzky and Mario Lemieux, and he would become the fourth player to eclipse 80 goals, joining Gretzky, Lemieux, and Brett Hull.

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Draisaitl’s hot start becomes even more impressive when you take a look at adjusted scoring, which takes into consideration things like schedule length, roster size, and league averages in order to try to find an equilibrium to compare statistics across different eras. Here’s how that calculation works.

According to Hockey Reference, Draisaitl is on pace to score 170 adjusted points, which would be tied with Wayne Gretzky’s 1985-86 season for the second-best adjusted season in NHL history. The best is Howie Morenz’s 1927-28 season, when he led a tight-scoring league with 51 points over 43 games.

Connor McDavid also shows up towards the top of the list for adjusted points. His 2020-21 and 2021 seasons, both of which were shorter than usual due to the pandemic, rank 10th and 14th in terms of all-time adjusted scoring. It goes to show how impressive these performances are in an era in which it’s more difficult for players to put up absurd offensive numbers.