David Legwand scored his 200th career NHL goal last night in the Nashville Predators’ 4-3 win over the Calgary Flames. He is both the leader among active Nashville Predators players and the Preds’ all-time franchise leader in goals scored.
If all you’re concerned with is longevity, that’s great. But if you compare Leggy up to other players drafted the same year as him, he’s a disappointment.
- Among 1998 NHL Draft first-round picks, Legwand is only the fourth-leading goalscorer. Vincent Lecavalier (383 goals), Simon Gagne (288), and Alex Tanguay (249) all have more than Legwand. And only by picking up steam late in the season has Leggy surpassed Winnipeg’s Nik Antropov (193).
- Among all 1998 NHL Draft selections, Legwand is even further down the list of goalscorers. Besides the first-rounders who have scored more than him, there are six other players chosen later who have scored more goals than Leggy: Mike Fisher (205 goals), Brad Richards (255), Erik Cole (228), Brian Gionta (231), Pavel Datsyuk (253), and Michael Ryder (213).
- Among all those players from the same draft year who have scored more goals than Legwand, only Lecavalier (1,034 games) and Richards (898) have played more often than the Preds’ all-time leading scorer, who has appeared in 892 NHL games. That gives every other 200-goal scorer from the 1998 NHL Draft a higher goals-per-game average than Nashville’s all-time leader.
Even if you don’t want to compare him with players from other teams, it still has to be noted that David Legwand isn’t even the top goalscorer among all Nashville Predators draft picks. That honor belongs to the Philadelphia Flyers’ Scott Hartnell. He has scored 230 goals in his 12 NHL seasons.
So by all means, let’s congratulate Leggy on his milestone. But let’s also not lose sight of the fact that it’s taken a very long to reach the 200-goal milestone. The fact that he leads the franchise all-time says a lot more about the Nashville Predators than it does about David Legwand.