Looking at Goals per Game…

One of our readers, Homie, thought that PPG wasn’t an accurate enough assessment on a player’s offensive value, so I decided to do one on Goals Per Game. Homie felt that Rick Nash was more valuable than I stated, and that he would be a top five GPG guy. Since Nash has been in the league for six years, I used those years to determine who has been the best sniper during that time.

Keep in mind that players like Oveckin and Crosby haven’t been in the league for six year, while other like Sundin, Jagr and Sakic were in the twilight of their careers.

Sorry Homie, but Nash is still not a top-five goal scorer, in fact he isn’t even in the top ten. Goals are one dimension of offence, and while I deem them more important than assists, to be considered great you have to be efficient scoring and passing.

Nash averages 0.44 GPG, 0.36 APG and is a 0.80 PGP player. He isn’t a point-a-game player in this league, so he isn’t great. He is good, but not great.

Here is the Goals Per Game in the last six years:


I also decided to look at the all-time top goal scorers in the history of the game and see what their GPG was. These are the guys who averaged over a goal every second game, excluding active players.


Here are the rest of the players who have scored 500 or more career goals. Only 41 players have lit the lamp 500 times.


The active players that are on the list include: Brendan Shanahan (656), Teemu Selanne (579), Mats Sundin (564), Mark Recchi (545), Mike Modano (543), Keith Tkachuk (525) and Jeremy Roenick (513).

It’s too bad that Bossy’s career ended so early. You wonder how many more goals he could have scored. For the record in Gretzky’s first ten years (774 GP) he scored 637 goals for a 0.82 GPG, and in Lemieux’s first ten he played 494 games, tallied 599 goals for a 0.82 GPG.

Right now only Ovechkin, Heatley, and Kovalchuk are on pace to be considered amongst the ELITE goal scorers. Time will tell if they can keep up their torrid GPG pace.

  • RCN


    I know it has nothing to do with the article. (Nice stats posts lately by the way)

    But if Colorado is going to pick up Roy as their GM and more specifically as a coach, shouldn't they be firing Granato first? I'm no scientist but I'm thinking that's a douche bag maneuver if I've ever seen one.

  • RCN

    baggedmilk wrote:

    I know it has nothing to do with the article. (Nice stats posts lately by the way)
    But if Colorado is going to pick up Roy as their GM and more specifically as a coach, shouldn’t they be firing Granato first? I’m no scientist but I’m thinking that’s a douche bag maneuver if I’ve ever seen one.

    I'm not the biggest Tony Granato fan, but what is happening in Colorado is a joke. It sure looks like they are trying to hire a new coach, but until it is announced they won't can Granato. Clearly they don't want him, so let him go.

    And if Granato accepts another demotion then the man is a marvel. It would mark the second time he was demoted from head coach to assistant or somewhere else in the organization. He must really love the Avs or just have no pride.

    If they give Roy both roles that is an accident waiting to happen. You can't do both jobs effectively anymore.

    Ogden Brother wrote:

    Comparing goal scorers now vs all time is tough when you consider goals/game are 20% – 40% lower then they were 30 years ago.

    Look at the top guys…Gretzky, Hull, Esposito, Richard…They were all from different eras. Great goal scorers will score regardless of the era. Look at Ovechkin's 0.67 it rates pretty very high. I know that number will come down as he gets older, but he is off to a great start.