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GDB 79.0: Nugent-Hopkins Gunning For 100 Points (8pm MT, SNW)

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Photo credit:Eric Hartline-USA TODAY Sports
Jason Gregor
1 year ago
Ryan Nugent-Hopkins will celebrate his 30th birthday next Wednesday. He can give himself the best, and most unexpected, birthday present one week early if he picks up one point tonight. It will be his 100th point of the season and he’d become the 121st player in NHL history to reach triple digits.
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His quest for 100 is one of the most unexpected of all time. His previous high was 69 points in 2019. He’s already surpassed his previous best by 30 points.
Only Gordie Howe (23rd season), Johnny Bucyk (16th), and Steven Stamkos (14th) need more seasons before reaching 100 for the first time. This is RNH’s 12th NHL season. Only 27 players have scored 100 points after the age of 30.
RNH will be the 13th-oldest player (29 years, 358 days) to score 100 points for the first time in his career. Howe (40 years old), Bucyk and Jean Ratelle (35), Daniel Alfredsson (33), Stamkos and Joe Mullen (32), Marty St. Louis and Vic Hadfield (31), and Brad Marchand, Daniel Sedin, Jean Pronovost, Claude Giroux, and Bobby Hull were 30.
And only Hadfield had a lower previous career high than RNH’s 69. Hadfield’s previous best was 66 in 1969 before he erupted and scored 106 points in 1972.  It is very rare to see a player jump from 66 or 69 points up to 100. Bucyk (also 69 points) is the only player to have the same increase as Nuge.
It’s been a remarkable season for RNH, and he’s improved his production throughout the season. He scored 46 points in the first 39 games of the season (1.18 points/game), but he’s tallied 53 points (1.36/game) in the last 39 games. He has 27 points in 17 games (1.59/game) since March 1st. He hasn’t had a slump or slowed down.
He will play his 798th game for the Oilers tonight. Only Howe, Bucyk, and Ratelle played more games before reaching 100 points in a season.
When RNH scores his 100th point he will join teammates Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl as only the 14th trio of teammates to score 100 points in a season.
The 1971 Boston Bruins were the first team to do so, and they had the four top scorers in the NHL. The 1983, 1984, and 1986 Oilers also had four 100-points players as did the 1993 Penguins. Glenn Anderson scored 99 points in 1984 and was one point shy of the Oilers having five players with 100. Paul Coffey had 96 in 1983, and Jaromir Jagr had 94 in 1993 as those two teams were also close to five 100-point players.
Only five fanbases in the NHL have seen a trio of players score 100 points. Edmonton has achieved it five times, Pittsburgh three, Boston and the New York Islanders twice and the LA Kings once. When RNH picks up his 100th point the Oilers franchise will have six of the 14 seasons (42.8%) with three teammates with 100+ points.
Oilers fans have been blessed, or spoiled, to watch some of the most explosive offensive teams in NHL history. You don’t see a player in their 12th NHL season score 100 points very often, and rarely do you see a trio tally 100 points.
Some franchises have never had one, never mind three players score 100 points at any time in their franchise histories. Edmonton currently has produced 38 different 100-point seasons from nine different players. RNH would be the 10th Oiler to score 100 in a season.
TEAM100 PT SeasonPlayersTEAM100 PT SeasonPlayers
EDM389BUFF65
PIT3412TB64
BOS2511TOR53
LA237CAR5 (4 HFD)4
COL22 (16 QUE)6DAL5 (4 MNS)3
NYI187ANA42
STL136OTT32
CGY12 (2 ATL)10FLA22
CHI125MIN11
DET115SJ11
MTL104WPG1 (ATL 1)1
PHI96CBJ00
ARI8 (8 WPG)3NSH00
WSH74NJ00
VAN65SEA00
NYR66VEG00
The Oilers and Penguins have had the most 100-point seasons by far. RNH would push the Oilers to 39 and they’d be the fourth franchise to have 10 different players score 100 points in a season. Jason Robertson gave Dallas fans their first 100-point player earlier this week (the franchise has four from the Minnesota North Stars era).
When RNH scores his 100th point, I hope he and Oilers fans take a moment to appreciate how rare and special it will be.

PRESENTED BY BETWAY

LINEUPS…

Oilers

RNH – McDavid – Hyman
Kane – Draisaitl – Yamamoto
Foegele – Bjugstad – Janmark
Kostin – Shore – Ryan
Ekholm – Bouchard
Nurse – Ceci
Kulak – DesharnaisCampbell
Woodcroft rarely has a player sit out both games in back-to-back situations, so I could see Devin Shore returning to the lineup and Philip Broberg coming out. We will find out in warmup, but based on past games that lineup, barring an injury, seems likely.

Ducks

Vatrano – Zegras – Strome
Henrique – McTavish – Terry
Comtois – Grant – Silfverberg
Jones – Lundestrom – McGinn
Fowler – Harrington
Beaulieu – White
Benoit – Shattenkirk<
Gibson
The Ducks could see Adam Henrique and Troy Terry return to the lineup tonight, which would be a big boost as they are second and fourth on the Ducks with 21 and 19 goals respectively.
The Ducks are struggling. Mightily. They’ve lost eight in a row and been outscored 36-13. They have nothing to play for, and that’s why the Oilers need to have a good start and give the Ducks no reason to believe they can win the game.

TONIGHT…

Photoshop: Tom Kostiuk
GAME DAY PREDICTION: Oilers win their sixth in a row and defeat the Ducks 5-2.
OBVIOUS GAME DAY PREDICTION: RNH scores his 100th point.
NOT-SO-OBVIOUS GAME DAY PREDICTION: Cody Ceci ends his career-high 76-game goalless streak.

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