I was looking recently at the single season records for the NHL. Among them, obviously, is the single season record for goals. Many of the players on the list, I watched as they put together hall of fame careers. But for some reason, the top four of this list appeared to be untouchable. Especially Wayne Gretzky's 1981-82,... 92 goal season. That to me is amazing.
At a goal a game + pace, I am sure many of those came at the expense of my Calgary Flames, who were in their second season in the city at the time. And I unfortunately did not see the legendary Gretzky for what he was, but a thorn in my teams side instead. And the soon to be unstoppable Oilers overwhelmed the new Southern Alberta counterparts on a regular basis.
Anyways, with all that prolific scoring coming from Mr. Gretzky in that season, where ever, or whomever the opponent was, I find it difficult to imagine anyone duplicating that feat. What with the opposition these days being faster, bigger, and stronger. And the goalies being quicker, and padded heavier than a member of the bomb squad. Plus, these modern day NHL alumni train hard, and are finely honed athletes, unlike the counterparts from decades before. I remember reading a story about Guy Lafleur, for those that don't remember, was a Montreal Canadien sniper, who used to sneak a smoke in between periods.
Plus, with everything else, you have to take into consideration the increased technology going into the equipment. The skates these days are finely tuned, single piece, ceramic blade, computer designed skating machines. In the old days, it was a boot,.... with a blade nailed to it.
In conclusion, it would seem to me, that the days of 70+ goals in a single season are over, and certainly no one will ever eclipse the current record holder of 92. I think that Crosby, and Ovechkin, as good and talented as they are,...will never break that record. But one never knows. Then of course there is hope for Steve Stamkos, who I think, has a natural goal scoring talent, may some day take a run at Wayne's old record. Regardless, when that day comes, and a goal scorer in the NHL comes along that has the skill and ability to actually overcome everything that I have laid out here,...I hope that I am in the stands, or at least watching the highlights, and truly appreciating a remarkable feat in the sporting world.
92+ goals in a single season in the NHL.