FanPost

Jarome at 35 years

Assuming there will be hockey, how many goals will Jarome Iginla score in this his 35 year old season ? Maybe 30, but not many more if history is any kind of a teacher.

Looking at the 35 year old seasons of the top 30 goal scorers of all time gives us this kind of number. I looked at the 34 players that currently stand ahead of Jarome on the career goal list. 4 had to be removed from the numbers (Mike Bossy, Guy Lafleur, Michel Goulet, Dale Hawerchuk) because they had retired by the time they reached 35 ( one to later unretire- Lafleur). I adjusted the seasons of Gordie Howe and Maurice Richard to reflect an 82 game schedule as opposed to the 70 they played. The other anomalies were Bobby Hull's 53 goals in the second WHA season and Mario Lemiuex's ridiculous 35 in 43 games in his specatacular unretirement after 4 years away. I did not make any adjustments for those last 2.

The overall average for these 30 of the 34 best goal scorers of all time was, in their 35 year old season 29.8. If you factored in the 4 retired guys the average drops to 26.3.

One has to factor in the goal scoring eras as well when looking at these numbers. I used last seasons numbers to make a correction factor for the data. 2011-12 was a reasonably low scoring year with each team scoring an average of 2.735 goals per game. Of the 30 seasons measured 23 were higher scoring and 7 lower. I multiplied the players goals by the percentage that 2011-12 was relative to the season they were 35. For example Brendan Shanahan scored 25 in 03-04 when teams averaged only 2.58 GPG, so his equalized number would be 6 % higher or 26.5 goals (incidentally Iggy tied for league lead at 41 in this super low scoring year). At the other end of the scale, Marcel Dionne's 28 goals at 35 came in 86-87 when teams scored an average of 3.67 gpg, so his number is reduced to by a factor of 0.75 or 21 goals.

On average the 30 seasons ( some seasons repeated by players of same age), there were 2.989 goals scored per team, so an average 8% more prolific than last year's NHL. Taking the player average of 29.8 and multiplying by 92.47 % leaves us with a number of 26.5 goals.

So if Iggy is to be average among the best 30 goal scorers of all time, adjusted for today's NHL then expect 26 or 27 goals. This of course does not allow for the team mates factor, which I would argue that for the most part Iggy is severely handicapped relative to this group, and your expectations should drop.

The big outliers in this group. Bucyk's 51 in 71. For Iggy to match that he's have to score 40 since the league average was 3.12 gpg in 70-71 and that is the factor I used to compare , however the Bruins were one of the most dominant in history that season , themselves averaging 5.11 GPG! If Jarome had Bobby Orr and Phil Esposito feeding him the puck, 40 would be cake.

Messier's 47 goals in 95-96 is also very impressive. Goals were going in at a 15% higher rate that year, but it still adjusts to 41, and you only have to look at his peers in the same year; Gretzky 23 goals, Gartner 35 and Kurri just 18 to know that Messier still had a ton of game at 35.

The only other 40 goal season was by Selanne in the first year post lockout when scoring was up to 3.09 GPG, so equivalent to a 35 goal season today.

In short, anything over 20 is probably a pretty decent season. If he gets to 30 it proves again, that despite the lack of quality team mates, and playing in a low scoring era that Jarome's place on the goal scoring ladder is well deserved and probably he needs to be considered much higher than his actual placement.

Name Goals 35 yr season GPG 2012 factor Adj Goals
Wayne Gretzky 894 23 3.145 86.96% 20.0
Gordie Howe 801 30 2.755 99.27% 29.8 corrected to 82 game
Brett Hull 741 24 2.745 99.64% 23.9
Marcel Dionne 731 28 3.67 74.52% 20.9
Phil Esposito 717 38 3.295 83.00% 31.5
Mike Gartner 708 35 3.145 86.96% 30.4
Mark Messier 694 47 3.145 86.96% 40.9
Steve Yzerman 692 18 2.755 99.27% 17.9
Mario Lemiuex 690 35 2.755 99.27% 34.7
Luc Robatille 668 30 2.62 104.39% 31.3
Jaromir Jagr 665 25 2.785 98.20% 24.6
Teemu Selanne 663 40 3.085 88.65% 35.5
Brendan Shanahan 656 25 2.58 106.01% 26.5
Dave Andreychuk 640 15 2.635 103.80% 15.6
Joe Sakic 625 32 3.085 88.65% 28.4
Bobby Hull 610 53 3.64 75.14% 39.8
Dino Cicarelli 608 22 3.145 86.96% 19.1
Jari Kurri 601 18 3.145 86.96% 15.7
Mark Recchi 577 26 2.57 106.42% 27.7
Mats Sundin 564 27 2.945 92.87% 25.1
Joe Nieuwendyk 564 25 2.64 103.60% 25.9
Mike Modano 561 27 3.085 88.65% 23.9
John Bucyk 556 51 3.12 87.66% 44.7
Ron Francis 549 21 2.635 103.80% 21.8
Maurice Richard 544 38 2.69 101.67% 38.6 corrected to 82 game
Stan Mikita 541 16 3.41 80.21% 12.8
Keith Tkachuk 538 27 2.945 92.87% 25.1
Frank Mahovolich 533 38 3.275 83.51% 31.7
Bryan Trottier 524 11 3.48 78.59% 8.6
Pat Verbeek 522 22 2.745 99.64% 21.9
Averages
28.9 2.989 92.47% 26.5
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