40 goals is definitely achievable
There are very few players in the NHL who have such a dangerous shot. Alex Ovechkin, Steven Stamkos, Vladimir Tarasenko — all are lethal, and there’s no reason to believe that with the tools in his locker, Boeser can’t join that group of snipers in the very near future. Consider Boeser’s position: he’s coming off his rookie and sophomore seasons, where he scored at least 26 goals each time. The knock against him? He’s yet to play a full 82 games.
Based on last season’s stats, Boeser would have scored 30 goals over a full 82-game campaign, without taking into account how his injury from the previous season affected his early-season performances.
In addition, he’s riding shotgun with Pettersson, who could potentially reach 100 points in the not-too-distant future. Hughes has joined the team, and we’re about to see what happens when the Canucks play meaningful hockey for a full 82 games, rather than the first 70 before they’re eliminated from playoff contention.
It’s all set up for a huge season for the Burnsville, Minnesota native.
Tarasenko is the best comparator for Boeser. Both have a career goals-per-game average of 0.42, and Boeser’s points-per-game figure of 0.83 is only marginally below Tarasenko’s at 0.84. Tarasenko’s shooting percentage is 12.9% — lower than Boeser’s 14.3% — so that would indicate that Tarasenko selects his shots better, as he’s scoring the same amount with less shots on net.
Here’s how Boeser can reach 40 goals however: playing 82 games, and shooting the same percentage as his rookie year. Extrapolating his 69-game performance across a full 82 games in 2018/19, Boeser would have taken 248 shots on net. Had he done so, and shot at his rookie shooting percentage of 16.2%, then guess how many goals he would have scored last season?
All Boeser needs is full health and a reversion to his rookie season shot conversion, and we have ourselves our first 40-goal scorer in nearly a decade. Wouldn’t that be nice?
At first it may sound unrealistic to call for a 40-goal season from Boeser — but when you look at it, is it really that far-fetched to state he could reach that mark? 82 games with Pettersson would surely see his shooting percentage increase, and it wouldn’t take that much to see Boeser become one of the elite scorers in the entire NHL.
Let’s hope to see a long-term deal rather than a bridge deal, because that could end up being a very expensive mistake.