Top 10 Fresh Faces That Could Score 50 Goals

Tom Collins

2015-08-03

Phil Kessel - USA Today Sports Images

Top 10 potential 50-goal scorers (who haven't done it yet)

One of the toughest things to do in the NHL nowadays is to score 50 goals in a season.

Only one player has hit that mark since the 2012-13 lockout. And only nine current NHL players (and two current KHLers) have ever scored 50 goals in an NHL season (for those that like trivia, you can try to figure it out and I'll post the answer at the end of the list). For comparison, 14 players scored 50 goals in the 1992-93 season.

Defensive schemes now are just too good, and goalies are just too big. The odds of a player scoring 50 goals in a season now must be astronomical.

But that doesn't mean it's impossible. And while it's great to look at guys who have already scored 50, let's look at players who haven't hit the 50-goal milestone before. I'm not saying there will be 10 new players to hit 50 goals this season, but these guys have the best chance.

For fantasy hockey, goals are the most important stat. There's power play goals, shorthanded goals, empty net goals, overtime goals, hat tricks and others. You won't find too many leagues with overtime assists as a category, for example, or a bonus for three blocked shots in a game.

So knowing who has the best chance of scoring 50 goals could go a long in helping you in your pool.

So here are the top 10 players with a chance to hit 50 goals for their first time this season.

 

10. Patrick Kane

Kane has an outside chance, but he's a bit too injury-prone to be any higher on this list. He's missed 35 games combined the last two seasons, and he's only ever broken 30 goals once, and that was in 2009-10. Even with last year's excellent start, Kane was only on pace for 36 goals before breaking his collarbone. He is still the Hawks best offensive player, and should be playing with Artem Anisimov and Marco Dano this season, which is an upgrade over Brad Richards and Kris Versteeg.

 

9. Joe Pavelski

The biggest long-shot on this list. Only nine players in NHL history have scored 50 goals in a season at the age of 31 or older, and only three of them hit 50 for the first time in their careers at that age (Joe Mullen, Vic Hadfield and John Bucyk). So the odds are against Pavelski. But he did post 41 goals two years ago and 37 last year. The Sharks have a new coach, and he still has  Joe Thornton on his team to feed him the puck.

 

8. Rick Nash

Here's why Nash is ranked so low. Last year, almost everything went right for Nash. He had a hot start (23 goals in his first 35 games). His shooting perc