The NHL All-Star break gives us a chance to look at the stats leaders to this point of the season and there has been plenty of great performances to go around. In this particular case, we look at the Art Ross Trophy race that’s given to the player who has the most points in the league at the end of the regular season.
At this point in the year, there’s a 16-point margin between first and second place but there’s a lot of hockey left to be played. Four players already have 70+ points, with one of them having 90+. There’s a lot of talent on display between these NHL point leaders and the stretch run of this race is going to be a lot of fun.
NHL Point Leaders at the All-Star Break
Connor McDavid; Center; Edmonton Oilers (92)
Phenomenal, extraordinary, spectacular. There’s not just one word to describe Connor McDavid throughout his whole career and the latest chapter is being written as we speak. The 26-year-old superstar won back-to-back Art Ross Trophies in 2021 as well as in 2022 and he’s well on his way to winning it for a third consecutive season. McDavid has an insane 92 points (41 goals, 50 assists) through 50 games this season for the Edmonton Oilers. Since 2000, no other player has tallied 90+ points through their first 50 games in a season.
The insane part of the stat is that not only has McDavid done it this year, but he also did it last season when he totaled 123 points. He is on pace for 150 points this season, which would be the most in a season since Mario Lemieux had 161 in 1995-96. If that wasn’t enough, McDavid also becomes the first player to record seven consecutive 90-point seasons since Steve Yzerman did it from 1986-87 to 1992-93. With just over two more months left in the season, there’s still plenty of time for McDavid to make even more history.
Leon Draisaitl; Center; Edmonton Oilers (76)
With 76 points at the All-Star break, Leon Draisaitl trails only McDavid among the NHL point leaders for the season. Amazingly, these two have been performing at the highest level on the same team for years but they still have a lot of work to do. For as much as we talk about McDavid, Draisaitl has been just as much an important part of this team with his performances throughout the years. He led the league in points in 2020 while finishing second twice since then and is in a tight race to do it again behind his teammate.
Draisaitl is tenth in goals with 29 and fourth in assists with 47. He’s also first in power-play goals with 17. There is a great chance that he tallies his fourth 100-point season in five years (84 points in a 56-game schedule for the 2020-21 season). Draisaitl will record his 700th career point this season, as he’s only eight away from reaching that milestone. With more than 30 games left on the campaign, there’s a lot of season left down the stretch to showcase even more of his great hockey prowess.
Nikita Kucherov; Right Wing; Tampa Bay Lightning (72)
When healthy, Nikita Kucherov is in the conversation for the Hart Trophy (MVP) every season and so far at the All-Star break, he’s showing you exactly why. He only has 19 goals but he’s accumulated a league-high 53 assists, already the third most of his career and we still have a long way to go in the season. Kucherov is the 12th player in NHL history to total 50 assists in 47 games or fewer multiple times. It’s also his fourth career 50-assist season, the second most in Tamp Bay Lightning history.
The talk centered around Kucherov has slowed down and that has led many to believe that somehow he’s actually being underrated. If anything, this season has proved that he’s not slowing down one bit and should be talked about as one of the best. Kucherov has been an intricate part of the Lightning’s success for the last few years and looks to lead them to another great run down the stretch as he searches for yet another 100-point season.
David Pastrnak; Right Wing; Boston Bruins (72)
Tied with Kucherov in points (72) at the All-Star break, David Pastrnak has been a huge driving force in a historic season to date for the Boston Bruins. He’s second in the league with 38 goals while also putting up 34 assists. This while being first in shots on goals (245) by a wide margin and top ten in plus/minus (+25). Only one player in Bruins history has had 38 or more goals before the All-Star/Olympic Break and that was Phil Esposito, who did it four times.
Pastrnak went into the season on a contract year as he is set to become an unrestricted free agent at the end of the season and he’s shown that he deserves to be one of the highest-paid players in the league whether it’s in Boston or somewhere else. He’s in line to have his best season yet at 26 years old and eclipse 100 points for the first time in his career. His work is not done as he would love to go out on top if this is indeed his last hurra in Boston.
Tage Thompson; Center; Buffalo Sabres (68)
We are witnessing a rising star in this league for the Buffalo Sabres and his name is Tage Thompson. At 25 years of age, Thompson is fifth in points at the All-Star break while having the fourth most goals in the league (34). He already matched his point total from all of last season (68) and still has a long way to go.
We did get the unfortunate news that Thompson suffered an upper-body injury and will miss the All-Star Game but the injury is not expected to keep him out long-term. The Sabres are still in a playoff race and having him back on the ice is vital to their success. Thompson is improving every year and this season we’re seeing that he’s capable of being one of the best in the NHL.
More Point Leaders
Erik Karlsson; Defenseman; San Jose Sharks (66)
Matthew Tkachuck; Left Wing; Florida Panthers (66)
Jason Robertson; Left Wing; Dallas Stars (66)
Jack Hughes; Center; New Jersey Devils (64)
Mikko Rantanen; Right Wing; Colorado Avalanche (61)