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Scott Cullen

TSN.ca Analytics

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There is one player above all the rest when it comes to projecting the top scorers for the 2018-2019 NHL season.

When it comes to the player at the top of the heap, there’s no question, it’s Connor McDavid. He led the league in scoring during a miserable season in Edmonton last year and while there’s no guarantee that it will be better next year, he’s the prohibitive favourite to win his third straight scoring title.

There were 5.94 goals per game scored in the National Hockey League last season, the highest per-game rate of red lights since the power-play-fueled 2005-2006 season.

Generally, more goals makes for a more entertaining product, so that should be a positive, but for those of us forecasting point totals, the question is: will it last?

It appeared that a slashing crackdown had a positive effect early last season, though that standard seemed to slip (as seems to be the case with virtually every rule crackdown in the history of the league).

But, it’s important because we know it’s possible that calling the games by the rules is enough to keep sufficient offence in the game.

Last season there were three 100-point scorers, nine 90-point scorers and 21 80-point scorers. By contrast, in 2013-2014, there were seven 80-point scorers, and two of those players landed exactly on 80 (though there were four more at 79).

In any case, if last season’s numbers are any indication then the guys at the top end may have a little bit of a higher ceiling than they had in previous seasons.

After McDavid, the rest of the challengers may be great players, but it’s difficult to project them over 100 points, which isn’t so tough with No. 97 as long as he stays healthy.

Sidney Crosby finished 10th in the league in scoring last season, but had a career-low on-ice shooting percentage (6.1%). If his percentages bounce back, and the Penguins power play stays lethal, Crosby is still a safe bet.

While Crosby is tried-and-true, Nikita Kucherov is on the way up. He put up 100 points last season, but his on-ice shooting percentage (10.2%) was rather lofty and that could make it tough to duplicate his production.

Like Crosby, Patrick Kane is a proven scorer coming off a season with a relatively low on-ice shooting percentage, so a recovery is a reasonable expectation.

Nathan MacKinnon had a bust-out season in 2017-2018, his point total jumping from 53 to 97, but is it safe to assume that he just carries on from that season? Is that MacKinnon’s new normal?

These are the kinds of questions necessary not just for the top players, but for players throughout the league. Was last year for real? Can this player be trusted to stay healthy? How safe is a player‘s spot in the lineup? Is that lineup written in pen or pencil? Remember, the best-laid plans in the offseason can get changed very quickly once the games start for real. Last year, for example, Jordan Eberle was going to play with John Tavares and Kyle Conner started the year in the AHL. Stuff happens.

But, this is a fun time of year. Hockey is on its way back and we get to start debating the merits of players and teams.

Today, you get my Top 300 projected scorers for the 2018-2019 NHL season. Tomorrow, full fantasy rankings will be online, with Google sheets available for the die-hards who want to make their own calculations.

Keep your stick on the ice, and good luck!

 

 

TOP 300 PROJECTED SCORERS

 
RANK PLAYER TEAM POS GP G A PTS
1 Connor McDavid Edmonton C 80 39 69 108
2 Sidney Crosby Pittsburgh C 80 35 59 94
3 Nikita Kucherov Tampa Bay RW 78 39 53 92
4 Patrick Kane Chicago RW 82 35 55 90
5 Nathan MacKinnon Colorado C 76 35 53 88
6 Evgeny Kuznetsov Washington C 81 26 58 84
7 Evgeni Malkin Pittsburgh C 69 34 49 83
8 Jamie Benn Dallas LW 80 36 46 82
9 Claude Giroux Philadelphia LW 81 26 56 82
10 Johnny Gaudreau Calgary LW 78 25 56 81
11 Alexander Ovechkin Washington LW 81 46 34 80
12 Artemi Panarin Columbus LW 81 30 50 80
13 Blake Wheeler Winnipeg RW 81 24 55 79
14 Tyler Seguin Dallas C 79 36 42 78
15 Taylor Hall New Jersey LW 77 33 45 78
16 Mathew Barzal N.Y. Islanders C 80 21 57 78
17 Auston Matthews Toronto C 76 43 34 77
18 Phil Kessel Pittsburgh RW 82 28 48 76
19 Brad Marchand Boston LW 73 34 41 75
20 John Tavares Toronto C 80 33 42 75
21 Anze Kopitar Los Angeles C 80 27 48 75
22 Nicklas Backstrom Washington C 79 21 54 75
23 David Pastrnak Boston RW 78 34 40 74
24 Clayton Keller Arizona LW 80 25 49 74
25 Mark Scheifele Winnipeg C 74 32 41 73
26 Steven Stamkos Tampa Bay C 73 28 45 73
27 Jakub Voracek Philadelphia RW 80 18 54 72
28 Patrik Laine Winnipeg RW 78 43 28 71
29 Vladimir Tarasenko St. Louis RW 80 36 35 71
30 Brent Burns San Jose D 82 20 51 71
31 Jack Eichel Buffalo C 75 28 42 70
32 Aleksander Barkov Florida C 72 27 43 70
33 Mitch Marner Toronto RW 80 21 49 70
34 Erik Karlsson Ottawa D 75 13 57 70
35 Joe Pavelski San Jose RW 82 27 42 69
36 Leon Draisaitl Edmonton C 78 26 43 69
37 Mikael Granlund Minnesota RW 79 23 45 68
38 Ryan Getzlaf Anaheim C 69 15 53 68
39 Vincent Trocheck Florida C 81 28 39 67
40 Rickard Rakell Anaheim LW 74 35 31 66
41 Mikko Rantanen Colorado RW 78 25 41 66
42 William Nylander Toronto RW 81 22 44 66
43 Sebastian Aho Carolina LW 80 28 37 65
44 Nikolaj Ehlers Winnipeg LW 82 28 37 65
45 Jonathan Huberdeau Florida LW 77 24 41 65
46 Brock Boeser Vancouver RW 75 34 30 64
47 Filip Forsberg Nashville LW 75 29 35 64
48 Brayden Schenn St. Louis C 81 27 37 64
49 Ryan O'Reilly St. Louis C 76 22 42 64
50 Teuvo Teravainen Carolina RW 81 23 40 63
51 Mark Stone Ottawa RW 73 23 40 63
52 Alexander Radulov Dallas RW 79 22 41 63
53 Sean Monahan Calgary C 77 29 33 62
54 Patrice Bergeron Boston C 72 28 34 62
55 Jonathan Marchessault Vegas LW 76 27 35 62
56 Victor Hedman Tampa Bay D 78 15 47 62
57 Viktor Arvidsson Nashville RW 79 30 31 61
58 Eric Staal Minnesota C 81 28 33 61
59 Ilya Kovalchuk Los Angeles LW 75 26 35 61
60 John Klingberg Dallas D 80 10 51 61
61 Brayden Point Tampa Bay C 78 27 33 60
62 Pierre-Luc Dubois Columbus C 80 24 36 60
63 Dylan Larkin Detroit C 81 22 38 60
64 Elias Pettersson Vancouver C 78 25 34 59
65 Jonathan Toews Chicago C 75 23 36 59
66 Matt Duchene Ottawa C 79 27 31 58
67 Evgeni Dadonov Florida RW 77 26 32 58
68 Sean Couturier Philadelphia C 73 23 35 58
69 Ryan Johansen Nashville C 80 15 43 58
70 James van Riemsdyk Philadelphia LW 80 32 25 57
71 Jeff Skinner Buffalo LW 81 29 27 56
72 Max Pacioretty Vegas LW 73 27 29 56
73 William Karlsson Vegas C 81 27 29 56
74 Ryan Nugent-Hopkins Edmonton LW 72 26 30 56
75 Jake Guentzel Pittsburgh LW 80 25 31 56
76 Mats Zuccarello N.Y. Rangers RW 80 18 38 56
77 Shayne Gostisbehere Philadelphia D 77 13 43 56
78 Anders Lee N.Y. Islanders LW 81 34 21 55
79 Logan Couture San Jose C 72 27 28 55
80 Mike Hoffman Florida LW 79 24 31 55
81 Gabriel Landeskog Colorado LW 76 23 32 55
82 Nico Hischier New Jersey C 80 23 32 55
83 Sam Reinhart Buffalo RW 81 23 32 55
84 Jaden Schwartz St. Louis LW 67 22 33 55
85 Matthew Tkachuk Calgary LW 74 21 34 55
86 J.T. Miller Tampa Bay LW 82 21 34 55
87 Joe Thornton San Jose C 70 14 41 55
88 Roman Josi Nashville D 76 14 41 55
89 Seth Jones Columbus D 77 14 41 55
90 Alex DeBrincat Chicago RW 80 29 25 54
91 Jeff Carter Los Angeles C 72 27 27 54
92 Nazem Kadri Toronto C 80 26 28 54
93 Jordan Eberle N.Y. Islanders RW 79 24 30 54
94 Alex Galchenyuk Arizona C 77 23 31 54
95 Kyle Turris Nashville C 77 21 33 54
96 Derek Stepan Arizona C 79 17 37 54
97 P.K. Subban Nashville D 75 13 41 54
98 John Carlson Washington D 74 12 42 54
99 Drew Doughty Los Angeles D 82 12 42 54
100 Cam Atkinson Columbus RW 76 28 25 53
101 Evander Kane San Jose LW 73 27 26 53
102 Jason Zucker Minnesota LW 78 27 26 53
103 Kyle Connor Winnipeg LW 77 26 27 53
104 Corey Perry Anaheim RW 77 22 31 53
105 Jonathan Drouin Montreal C 78 16 37 53
106 David Perron St. Louis RW 73 15 38 53
107 Kris Letang Pittsburgh D 68 10 43 53
108 Torey Krug Boston D 78 10 43 53
109 Keith Yandle Florida D 82 7 46 53
110 Mika Zibanejad N.Y. Rangers C 77 25 27 52
111 Kyle Palmieri New Jersey RW 74 26 25 51
112 Nick Schmaltz Chicago RW 77 16 35 51
113 Josh Bailey N.Y. Islanders RW 78 15 36 51
114 Patric Hornqvist Pittsburgh RW 73 25 25 50
115 Nino Niederreiter Minnesota RW 79 23 27 50
116 Kyle Okposo Buffalo RW 74 18 32 50
117 Mikko Koivu Minnesota C 81 16 34 50
118 Tyson Barrie Colorado D 72 12 38 50
119 T.J. Oshie Washington RW 74 22 27 49
120 Dustin Brown Los Angeles RW 81 21 28 49
121 Thomas Vanek Detroit LW 76 20 29 49
122 Justin Williams Carolina RW 81 19 30 49
123 Mikael Backlund Calgary C 82 18 31 49
124 Paul Stastny Vegas C 74 15 34 49
125 Dougie Hamilton Carolina D 81 15 34 49
126 Alex Pietrangelo St. Louis D 78 13 36 49
127 Henrik Zetterberg Detroit C 74 11 38 49
128 Wayne Simmonds Philadelphia RW 78 25 23 48
129 Adam Henrique Anaheim C 81 25 23 48
130 Ondrej Kase Anaheim RW 78 22 26 48
131 Reilly Smith Vegas RW 74 21 27 48
132 Yanni Gourde Tampa Bay RW 78 21 27 48
133 David Krejci Boston C 71 18 30 48
134 Elias Lindholm Calgary RW 79 15 33 48
135 Dustin Byfuglien Winnipeg D 75 12 36 48
136 Ryan Suter Minnesota D 80 7 41 48
137 James Neal Calgary RW 73 26 21 47
138 Tyler Toffoli Los Angeles RW 77 24 23 47
139 Brendan Gallagher Montreal RW 70 23 24 47
140 Bo Horvat Vancouver C 75 21 26 47
141 Jake DeBrusk Boston LW 75 19 28 47
142 Jordan Staal Carolina C 79 19 28 47
143 Pavel Buchnevich N.Y. Rangers RW 77 16 31 47
144 Ryan Donato Boston LW 77 26 20 46
145 Patrick Marleau Toronto LW 82 26 20 46
146 Anthony Mantha Detroit RW 75 23 23 46
147 Chris Kreider N.Y. Rangers LW 75 22 24 46
148 Henrik Borgstrom Florida C 75 20 26 46
149 Tyler Johnson Tampa Bay RW 75 19 27 46
150 Alexander Steen St. Louis LW 74 15 31 46
151 Brandon Saad Chicago LW 81 23 22 45
152 Travis Konecny Philadelphia RW 76 21 24 45
153 Kevin Fiala Nashville LW 77 20 25 45
154 Jakob Silfverberg Anaheim RW 79 20 25 45
155 Oliver Ekman-Larsson Arizona D 79 15 30 45
156 Max Domi Montreal LW 76 13 32 45
157 Mikhail Sergachev Tampa Bay D 80 10 35 45
158 Jake Gardiner Toronto D 81 7 38 45
159 Will Butcher New Jersey D 80 6 39 45
160 Eeli Tolvanen Nashville LW 77 23 21 44
161 Tomas Hertl San Jose C 75 21 23 44
162 Derick Brassard Pittsburgh C 76 19 25 44
163 Bryan Little Winnipeg C 70 18 26 44
164 Gustav Nyquist Detroit RW 81 18 26 44
165 Zach Werenski Columbus D 78 14 30 44
166 Mark Giordano Calgary D 81 14 30 44
167 Morgan Rielly Toronto D 78 7 37 44
168 Conor Sheary Buffalo LW 74 22 21 43
169 Craig Smith Nashville RW 80 21 22 43
170 Kevin Hayes N.Y. Rangers C 77 20 23 43
171 Milan Lucic Edmonton LW 81 16 27 43
172 Charlie Coyle Minnesota RW 76 15 28 43
173 Ryan Spooner N.Y. Rangers LW 69 13 30 43
174 Nick Leddy N.Y. Islanders D 81 9 34 43
175 Duncan Keith Chicago D 78 5 38 43
176 Zach Parise Minnesota LW 67 22 20 42
177 Danton Heinen Boston RW 77 15 27 42
178 Ondrej Palat Tampa Bay LW 68 14 28 42
179 Tyler Bozak St. Louis C 74 14 28 42
180 Casey Mittelstadt Buffalo C 77 11 31 42
181 Kevin Shattenkirk N.Y. Rangers D 67 10 32 42
182 Andrei Svechnikov Carolina RW 75 22 19 41
183 Robby Fabbri St. Louis RW 72 17 24 41
184 Marcus Johansson New Jersey LW 68 16 25 41
185 Alex Killorn Tampa Bay LW 81 16 25 41
186 Mathieu Perreault Winnipeg LW 69 14 27 41
187 Alexander Wennberg Columbus C 70 10 31 41
188 Rasmus Ristolainen Buffalo D 77 7 34 41
189 Artem Anisimov Chicago C 71 21 19 40
190 David Backes Boston RW 74 18 22 40
191 Nick Foligno Columbus LW 74 17 23 40
192 Martin Necas Carolina C 78 17 23 40
193 Vladislav Namestnikov N.Y. Rangers LW 79 17 23 40
194 Tanner Pearson Los Angeles LW 81 17 23 40
195 Nick Bjugstad Florida RW 71 16 24 40
196 Jack Roslovic Winnipeg C 77 15 25 40
197 Mikkel Boedker Ottawa RW 77 15 25 40
198 Ryan Ellis Nashville D 71 13 27 40
199 Matt Dumba Minnesota D 80 13 27 40
200 Dylan Sikura Chicago RW 75 12 28 40
201 Jake Muzzin Los Angeles D 78 8 32 40
202 Valentin Zykov Carolina LW 75 21 18 39
203 Erik Haula Vegas LW 75 19 20 39
204 Victor Rask Carolina C 76 16 23 39
205 Alex Tuch Vegas RW 77 16 23 39
206 Kevin Labanc San Jose RW 78 13 26 39
207 Justin Faulk Carolina D 73 12 27 39
208 Andreas Athanasiou Detroit C 74 21 17 38
209 Ryan Dzingel Ottawa LW 80 19 19 38
210 Loui Eriksson Vancouver RW 74 17 21 38
211 Richard Panik Arizona RW 77 17 21 38
212 Frans Nielsen Detroit C 79 16 22 38
213 Jason Spezza Dallas C 75 15 23 38
214 Charles Hudon Montreal LW 74 14 24 38
215 Jason Pominville Buffalo RW 79 14 24 38
216 Gabe Vilardi Los Angeles C 70 13 25 38
217 Ivan Provorov Philadelphia D 82 12 26 38
218 Tomas Tatar Montreal LW 82 20 17 37
219 Nolan Patrick Philadelphia C 75 16 21 37
220 Christian Dvorak Arizona C 78 16 21 37
221 Oliver Bjorkstrand Columbus RW 74 13 24 37
222 Phillip Danault Montreal C 77 12 25 37
223 Jesper Bratt New Jersey RW 77 12 25 37
224 Shea Theodore Vegas D 78 9 28 37
225 Colton Parayko St. Louis D 81 7 30 37
226 Charlie McAvoy Boston D 75 6 31 37
227 Josh Anderson Columbus RW 79 21 15 36
228 Brock Nelson N.Y. Islanders C 81 20 16 36
229 Anthony Beauvillier N.Y. Islanders LW 75 18 18 36
230 Boone Jenner Columbus LW 78 18 18 36
231 Christian Fischer Arizona RW 78 17 19 36
232 Andre Burakovsky Washington LW 70 15 21 36
233 Adrian Kempe Los Angeles C 78 15 21 36
234 Bobby Ryan Ottawa RW 67 14 22 36
235 Dylan Strome Arizona C 77 14 22 36
236 Alexander Kerfoot Colorado RW 76 11 25 36
237 Jared Spurgeon Minnesota D 70 10 26 36
238 Jeff Petry Montreal D 75 9 27 36
239 Alex Goligoski Arizona D 80 9 27 36
240 T.J. Brodie Calgary D 74 5 31 36
241 Brady Skjei N.Y. Rangers D 81 5 31 36
242 Timo Meier San Jose RW 80 18 17 35
243 Anthony Cirelli Tampa Bay C 77 15 20 35
244 Jean-Gabriel Pageau Ottawa C 80 15 20 35
245 Nikita Scherbak Montreal RW 72 13 22 35
246 Zach Hyman Toronto LW 82 13 22 35
247 Andrew Cogliano Anaheim LW 82 12 23 35
248 Devin Shore Dallas LW 82 12 23 35
249 Robert Thomas St. Louis C 75 11 24 35
250 Kyler Yamamoto Edmonton RW 75 11 24 35
251 Dmitry Orlov Washington D 82 9 26 35
252 Noah Hanifin Calgary D 80 7 28 35
253 Andreas Johnsson Toronto LW 75 18 16 34
254 Micheal Ferland Carolina LW 75 17 17 34
255 Mattias Janmark Dallas LW 77 17 17 34
256 Aaron Ekblad Florida D 78 14 20 34
257 Derek Ryan Calgary C 74 13 21 34
258 Shea Weber Montreal D 50 12 22 34
259 Sam Gagner Vancouver RW 71 12 22 34
260 Ryan Pulock N.Y. Islanders D 76 11 23 34
261 Thomas Chabot Ottawa D 78 11 23 34
262 Mike Green Detroit D 69 9 25 34
263 Cam Fowler Anaheim D 72 8 26 34
264 Brent Seabrook Chicago D 81 7 27 34
265 Tobias Rieder Edmonton RW 79 15 18 33
266 Radek Faksa Dallas C 80 15 18 33
267 Ryan Kesler Anaheim C 63 14 19 33
268 Bryan Rust Pittsburgh RW 72 14 19 33
269 Logan Brown Ottawa C 75 14 19 33
270 Michael Frolik Calgary RW 72 13 20 33
271 Justin Abdelkader Detroit LW 74 13 20 33
272 Valeri Nichushkin Dallas RW 79 13 20 33
273 Travis Zajac New Jersey C 70 12 21 33
274 Carl Soderberg Colorado C 79 12 21 33
275 Tyler Bertuzzi Detroit LW 77 10 23 33
276 Valtteri Filppula N.Y. Islanders C 79 10 23 33
277 Jaccob Slavin Carolina D 82 7 26 33
278 Justin Schultz Pittsburgh D 69 6 27 33
279 Brendan Perlini Arizona LW 78 19 13 32
280 Artturi Lehkonen Montreal LW 75 17 15 32
281 Andrew Ladd N.Y. Islanders LW 76 17 15 32
282 Sven Baertschi Vancouver LW 67 16 16 32
283 Jakub Vrana Washington LW 75 15 17 32
284 Brock McGinn Carolina LW 79 15 17 32
285 Lars Eller Washington C 80 15 17 32
286 Chris Tierney San Jose C 81 13 19 32
287 Ryan Strome Edmonton C 76 12 20 32
288 Tom Wilson Washington RW 80 12 20 32
289 Josh Ho-Sang N.Y. Islanders RW 75 11 21 32
290 Pavel Zacha New Jersey C 77 10 22 32
291 Colin Miller Vegas D 75 9 23 32
292 Mattias Ekholm Nashville D 81 8 24 32
293 Sami Vatanen New Jersey D 72 5 27 32
294 Michael Grabner Arizona RW 79 21 10 31
295 Filip Zadina Detroit RW 76 16 15 31
296 Calle Jarnkrok Nashville C 75 15 16 31
297 Patrick Maroon St. Louis LW 75 15 16 31
298 Ryan Hartman Nashville RW 77 15 16 31
299 Connor Brown Toronto RW 80 15 16 31
300 Riley Nash Columbus C 75 12 19 31
301 Evan Rodrigues Buffalo LW 72 11 20 31
302 Jan Kovar N.Y. Islanders C 70 10 21 31
303 Carl Hagelin Pittsburgh LW 76 10 21 31
304 Oskar Klefbom Edmonton D 74 9 22 31
305 Marc-Edouard Vlasic San Jose D 76 9 22 31
306 Brandon Montour Anaheim D 79 8 23 31
 

 

 

Scott Cullen can be reached at scott.cullen@bellmedia.ca