Scoring 60 goals in the National Hockey League is a rare and remarkable achievement enjoyed by very few to ever lace up the skates. At the moment, only 20 players in league history have achieved the incredible feat, and four of them currently play in the NHL.
Back in 1993, Finnish sniper Teemu Selanne scored an astounding 76 for the former Winnipeg Jets. Teemu’s total was even more impressive because it occurred during his first season in the league, setting a rookie goals scored record that may last for decades.
Jaromir Jagr buried 62 times as a member of the Pittsburgh Penguins in 1995-96. The five time Art Ross winner is one of the most skilled finishers in NHL history, however, he never duplicated his 96′ performance of 60 plus.
Since the mid nineties, 60 or more has only happened twice, and it’s no surprise who the culprits were. In 2007-08, Russian superstar Alex Ovechkin became the first player to score more than 60 in the new millennium, with an absurd 65 in 82 games. Ovie’s 65 were 13 more than the next best scorer in the league that season.
Steven Stamkos quickly established himself as one of the game’s best pure shooters when he entered the league in 2008-09. In his 4th season with the Lightning, the Markham native hit 60 for the first time in his career, becoming only the 2nd NHLer to reach the milestone in 16 years.
Alex Ovechkin and Steven Stamkos have proven they can do it, making them the favourites to hit 60 in 14′ if anyone does. However, there are two NHL stars with a realistic chance to join the 60 goal club very soon.
The Two Most Likely Potential 60 Goal Scorers In The NHL
John Tavares of the New York Islanders has become one of the game’s best double threats offensively. With JT, there is a dynamic playmaking ability, as well as, a lethal finishing quality. Last season, Tavares finished 3rd in goals with 28, only one behind Stamkos. There is no reason the Islanders captain can’t continue tallying at the top of the leader board moving forward over the next several years. He’s a 1st overall pick whose done nothing but dominate at every level – including the NHL, made evident in 2012-13.
Sidney Crosby is the other NHL star with a legit shot at 60 goals in a single season. The Penguins franchise player has scored 51 in the league, and recent concussion issues aside, has still dominated offensively when he’s been healthy enough to suit up for the Pens.
Crosby’s biggest hinderance in a possible pitch for 60 is his propensity to pass first, shoot as a second option. That being said, Sid The Kid’s got the tools to bury as often as anyone who skates on NHL ice.
Tavares and Crosby are the obvious choices because with them, there is a track record of elite scoring and skill coupled with a unique desire to outwork opponents, superior skill aside.
If there are other candidates in the NHL with 60 goal seasons in their future, names like Evgeni Malkin and Corey Perry stand out – both have scored 50 before in the NHL, and neither is on the decline.
Outside shot players: Tyler Seguin, Taylor Hall, Nail Yakupov and Nathan MacKinnon top a list of recent top 2 draft picks with scoring reputations, not to mention, none have hit their prime yet.