12 COMMENTS

    • Uhhh, no, he is about 200 goals away, and a whole lot can happen in that time. He is just one back injury away from not being the same. Just ask Gretzky, Lemieux, and Bossy. 200 goals is a great career for most. Don’t just expect things to go according to how you WANT them to go.

    • This year … 48 goals, and 19 assists … team player. I think Mike Bossy might have been the greatest pure goal scorers. The guy was hungry to score, but he still put up great assist numbers. 48 and only 19 ??? If he breaks the record, it would be empty. It would be all about a guy who did everything for himself to break the record.

  1. Even Wayne Gretzky himself clearly admitted in a recent 2019 interview: “I played in the right era, it’s harder to score now than it was when I played.” The statistical average number of goals scored per game per team in the NHL between 1979 to 1993 when Gretzky played in his first 14 seasons was 3.742 goals. The statistical average number of goals scored per game per team in the NHL between 2005 to 2019 when Ovechkin played in his first 14 seasons was 2.838 goals. That’s a 32% difference which means that it is statistically 32% more difficult to score goals in the modern era compared to back in the 80’s and early 90’s.

    When people only look at a 1:1 goal comparison between Gretzky’s total goals and Ovechkin’s total goals, its like comparing a sprinter who is running on flat level surface to that of a sprinter running uphill on an incline. Ovechkin’s modern era goal total needs to be calibrated by 32% in order to properly compare to Gretzky’s goal total: 706 goals x 1.32 = 932 goals > Gretzky’s 894 goals. And that’s even before adding in the 50 goals Ovechkin would have certainly scored in the 2004/2005 lockout season.

    It really puts into perspective what Ovechkin has achieved in the modern NHL era while even having played one less season than Gretzky, and Ovechkin still has 5 or 6 seasons left to play still. It’s like catching up to the fastest sprinter in history after having a late start, while running against an incline, and then passing that fastest sprinter while there is still a quarter length of track remaining.

    Just look at the differences between goalies from the 80’s and goalies in the modern NHL era. Look at the differences in their size of pads, height, reach, flexibility, technique, and skill. Most goalies from the 80’s played worse than today’s amateur beer league goalies. During Gretzky’s first 14 seasons, the average NHL goalie save % was 0.879 and the average GAA was 3.65, which is unheard of among today’s modern era NHL goalies, except maybe in the minors. Also, no players bothered to block shots back in the 80’s, imagine how many more goals Ovechkin would have if players played 80’s style defense and did not bother to block shots.

    Also, Gretzky played on a decade-long dynasty team in an era that had no salary cap. The 80’s Oilers Dynasty fab 5 would have never been allowed to exist on the same team after the salary cap was put in place starting in 2006 during Ovechkin’s first season. Ovechkin played every single season under a limiting cap which made the league way more competitive and evenly distributed, Gretzky never did, not even a single season.

    • Clearly some bias in what I’m reading … not to mention the posters name. Wayne is a humble man. The era he played in was simply the best in hockey history, with the greatest group of players collected in a 2 decade period. These guys were the best, that is why scoring was up. The league now sucks. The players suck. And Ovechkin is a shot hog, with a terrible shooting %. The closer Ovechkin was getting to the goal record, the more he was getting set up for shots. I’d start my team with Gretzky, Lemieux and Bossy. These guys were great and made others around them great. Ovechkin is all about individualism. I don’t have any doubts that eventually, he will break the record. Even if he has to play another 15 years. Sports are now a huge uncertain factor in returning, and he is due for an injury. Wayne will always be considered the best, by those who really know and understand hockey.

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