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NHL Projected Goals For By Team
(9 votes)
By Darryl Dobbs
NHL Goals - Toronto HockeyIn an analysis of all the teams and how they fared offensively last season, the changes they have made this summer, as well as the predictions made in the DobberHockey Pool Guide 2007-08, I have put together a team-by-team projection of their goals for in the coming season. As you can probably imagine, the Penguins wind up on top of the scoring heap, the Chicago Blackhawks are most improved team (offensively) and the Buffalo Sabres will take the biggest goal-scoring freefall.

With Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin still years away from their prime, it’s scary to see what this team will do in the coming years. A return to the 400-goal days for a team? Perhaps, but for this season expect a 40- or 50-goal jump. Not only will the two wunderkinds pad last season’s numbers by 15 to 25 points each (or more), but the addition of Petr Sykora will inject some much-needed scoring from off the wing. Ryan Whitney will become a 70-point rearguard (or close to it) this year, while Jordan Staal will also take the next step in his development.

For Chicago, not only does the team welcome Jonathan Toews and Patrick Kane into the fold, but Martin Havlat should be good for 65 or 70 games. He’s a Band-Aid Boy, but last year was even worse than usual for the talented winger. Sergei Samsonov is also a better fit in the windy city than he was in Montreal, so a 25-goal bounce-back season is in cards.

The Buffalo Sabres are expected to plummet according to a lot of experts. I’m not buying that. I think the Sabres will slip – but not too much. Offensively, however, is another story. You can’t take 95 points (Daniel Briere) out of the lineup and not slip in the goal-scoring department. The team will still win – just by fewer blowouts. They will still be a top-five offensive team, thanks to the added responsibility for Thomas Vanek, Maxim Afinogenov, and Derek Roy. Drew Stafford and Ales Kotalik will see second-line minutes now, as well.

Other teams that will slide in the coming campaign – Nashville, Anaheim, the Islanders and the Habs. The Preds’ Alexander Radulov and Shea Weber will pick up a ton of slack, but with Paul Kariya, Kimmo Timonen and Scott Hartnell all gone, while Steve Sullivan is on the shelf until Christmas after undergoing a second back surgery, there is just too much to replace. The Ducks will probably be even with last season if Teemu Selanne decides to play another year, while the Habs will not be the NHL’s No.1 power play any longer – not with Sheldon Souray gone to Edmonton.

Besides Pittsburgh and Chicago, the Caps and the Kings will also see a boost in their goals for (quite obviously). Both teams injected a significant amount of skill into their lineup this summer, so how can they not? The Caps are no longer and “all Alexander team”, as Semin and Ovechkin will now have help from Michal Nylander, Nicklas Backstrom, Viktor Kozlov and Tom Poti. The Kings, meanwhile, have added an entire second line with Slovaks Ladislav Nagy, Michal Handzus alongside Kyle Calder.

Goals in general will go up 2.3%. This is simply because of the “Crosby and Malkin” factor. Teams will not be able to shut them down, which should force things to open up slightly. In the coming years, this will be even more apparent, but for this season look for the increase to be a slight one.

Below is the breakdown of team-by-team projected goals for:

Projected Rank Team 2006-07 GF Projected GF 2006-07 Rank Difference
1 Pittsburgh 277 325 3 48
2 Ottawa 288 290 2 2
3 Buffalo 308 278 1 -30
4 Toronto 258 270 9 12
5 Colorado 272 270 4 -2
6 Washington 235 265 19 30
7 Los Angeles 227 263 20 36
8 San Jose 258 261 8 3
9 NY Rangers 242 259 16 17
10 Tampa Bay 253 258 11 5
11 Chicago 201 257 28 56
12 Calgary 258 253 7 -5
13 Detroit 254 250 10 -4
14 Carolina 241 248 17 7
15 Philadelphia 214 248 26 34
16 Nashville 272 245 5 -27
17 Florida 247 245 13 -2
18 Minnesota 235 241 18 6
19 Atlanta 246 240 14 -6
20 Vancouver 222 231 22 9
21 Anaheim 258 230 6 -28
22 NY Islanders 248 228 12 -20
23 Montreal 245 227 15 -18
24 St. Louis 214 227 27 13
25 Boston 219 226 23 7
26 Dallas 226 224 21 -2
27 New Jersey 216 222 24 6
28 Columbus 201 218 29 17
29 Phoenix 216 210 25 -6
30 Edmonton 195 203 30 8


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Dwayne - Toronto?   | 72.143.57.xxx | 2007-08-28 21:14:27
You put your credibility in serious jeopardy when you put a Toronto team tied here with Colorado who was second in goals in the NHL West last year. They added Ryan Smyth ( a consistent scoring threat for years) and Toronto added Jason Blake ( a one year anomaly). Colorado boasts Sakic, Hejduk, Stastny, Brunette and Wolski(?). Toronto has Sundin and Tucker(seriously?) & MCabe who if you belive the pundits they were trying to unload (besides I think Kaberle is better). Just don't see it for Toronto. They're going to go up 12 goals over last year and Colorado is going to drop 2. Maybe you're pandering to the audience given the website is torontohockey.net. First time reading you, maybe you're another of those Toronto "homers", hope not thought it was a great article 'til I saw that. The only other bone I would pick is Nashville only dropping 27 goals given what they've lost but I don't know as much about them so I won't give you too hard a time about that one. My 2 cents, probably all it's worth.
Bryan - It's all what ifs and what co   | 74.107.124.xxx | 2007-08-28 21:59:10
It's all speculation, sure Toronto might be ranked a little high but after adding Blake who scored 40 and Bell who is sure to net 10-15 is +12 a stretch?

You do have a point about Colorado, they should be ranked higher but to suggest Blake is a one year wonder - puts your credibility at risk. Blake has scored 115 goals the last 4 years. Much of that time was spent on the third line. He never got a chance til last season to play the top pp. Compare that to your consistent scoring threat and he has only scored 7 more goals then Blake over the last 4 years! That said I can see Colorado going up by about the same as the Leafs.

Nashville lost Timonen, Hartnell, Kariya, and Sullivan is out 3 months with back surgery. Without looking that's got to be 80+ goals out of the lineup.
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