Only two active players have scored 300 goals faster than Oilers' McDavid

Mar 31 2023, 3:12 pm

There’s no doubting the speed of Connor McDavid.

But he reinforced that again Thursday night.

The Edmonton Oilers captain added another snipe to his stat line against the Los Angeles Kings, officially dethroning teammate Leon Draisaitl to become the third-fastest active NHL player to net 300 goals.

Only Steven Stamkos (550 games) of the Tampa Bay Lightning, and Alex Ovechkin (473) of the Washington Capitals were quicker off the draw than McDavid, who accomplished the feat in 563 twirls.

Draisaitl had claimed the fourth spot on that list, also behind Sidney Crosby of the Pittsburgh Penguins (622), just two days prior to McDavid besting Kings goalie Joonas Korpisalo — fittingly — on a shorthanded breakaway 3:53 into the third period.

“It’s not just a breakaway. He dances around two guys, too, to get the breakaway,” Oilers defenceman Mattias Ekholm told media postgame. “That’s where he shows where he’s probably one of the few guys in the league that can do that and at that pace and at that speed. Three-hundred goals in the league already. It’s crazy numbers. And you can see every night why that is.”

At 26 years, 76 days, McDavid also became the 11th-youngest player in league history at the time of his 300th goal.

Unsurprisingly, McDavid leads the NHL with 61 net-denters.

But wait, that’s not all.

The goal gave McDavid his fifth 10-game point streak of the season, the most double-digit runs by any player in a single campaign in NHL history.

Not bad.

But wait, there’s more.

The lamp-lighter pushed McDavid to 841 points (300 goals, 541 assists) in 563 career twirls, becoming the fifth player in NHL history to score 300 goals and net over 500 assists prior to his 600th NHL game. The others? Wayne Gretzky, Mario Lemieux, Peter Stastny, and Bryan Trottier.

Not bad company.

It’s just another piece in a week of accolades for McDavid, who became the 10th player in NHL history to record 140 points in a single season, and the first since both Lemieux and Jaromir Jagr achieved the feat in 1995-96.

McDavid is also the first since the aforementioned Penguins, and seventh in total, to post a 60-goal, 80-assist effort in a single season.

Not hard to see why he was voted “most impactful forward” by his peers in an NHLPA poll last week.

Even easier to see why he’ll record the highest-scoring single campaign in NHL history by a player not named Gretzky or Lemieux.

Should his pace hold over the remaining six games of the regular season, McDavid — who’s already got the Art Ross and Maurice “Rocket” Richard trophies locked up — would finish with 66 goals and 90 assists for 156 points.

That’d best Steve Yzerman’s effort in 1988-89 as the 14th-most productive effort in NHL history — with the other 13 split between Gretzky’s nine individual season outputs and four from Lemieux.

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