This calendar year is swiftly coming to a close and I simply cannot believe it. Through the last two years that have been up and down and absolutely, unbelievably stressful to live through. Personally, I feel like this year was critical in my life story but not in a great way. You live and learn and sometimes you have to do that the brutally hard way, that’s what life has been since March of 2020. Now we’re moving onto 2022 with a lot to miss and some things to look forward to after a bleak two years in purgatory. However, in these bleak times, we have been blessed with some incredible hockey.
Looking back on the last 3 seasons of hockey is so confusing at times though. Technically the 2020-2021 season started January 13th, 2021, and went until May of 2021, then we had the playoffs. Now we have a whole 2021-2022 season that started in October and is currently being derailed by COVID once more. It doesn’t feel like we’ve seen a whole two NHL seasons basically played out since the start of 2021 but COVID has ruined any construct of time I once understood. With that in mind, the NHL did release the league’s top goal scorers since January 1st, 2021 and the results are a mix of shocking yet totally par.
First place went to Auston Matthews who scored 61 goals in 79 games played since January 13th, 2021 – the official start of last season. Matthews, while incredible and a stunner, was not who I would have guessed to be number one. He was incredible last regular season, 41 goals in 52 games, and then the Maple Leafs had that terrible first-round exit against the Habs which made everyone forget about that magical regular season. He looked like he was on his way to that same success with 20 goals in his first 27 games of this season. I knew he was great these last two years but I didn’t think it was at this level.
The second and third went to the dynamic duo of Leon Draisaitl and Connor McDavid. No shock they’re back-to-back and that there are only 4 goals between them. Draisaitl put up those 54 goals in 85 games while McDavid put up 50 in 85 games as well. They’re literally the most lethal duo in the NHL right now, no shit they’re neck-and-neck, I just thought they might have been one and two.
Fourth goes to the sweet summer child of my hometown Chicago Blackhawks, Alex DeBrincat. Brinksy has been a beacon of hope while the Hawks’ future and past looked dark and grim. It took him 82 games to score 49 goals and he ends up 4th on this list. Alex is still young in his NHL career and he’s been carrying the Hawks on his back for a while. He’ll be a leader one day, he really already is. Good for him for making this list. He deserves the recognition.
And last but certainly not least is Alex Ovechkin. The 36-year-old forward is nowhere close to slowing down. In his 16th and 17th seasons in this league, it took Ovi just 76 NHL games to score 46 goals. Of all the high-scoring guys on this list, Ovi got here with the least amount of games. He’s breaking that Gretzky record, there’s no doubt in my mind. He’s going to continue at this rate until he breaks that record or his feet fall off.
This calendar year has been an interesting one on the ice. There’s been so many highlight-reel goals, countless from the 5 guys mentioned above. Hopefully, 2022 is kinder to us as a whole, both on and off the ice. Humankind is due for a fucking break. So, dear reader, I hope you enjoyed this blog and I hope you have a good night. Enjoy some delightful highlight reels from the top goal scorers in this calendar year:
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Featured Image: NHL.com