The Caps and Their 20-Goal Totals

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Posted March 21, 2019

It’s not my first rodeo” – Evgeny Kuznetsov. (Caps Outsider)

Evgeny Kuznetsov netted his 20th goal of the season on Wednesday, becoming the sixth Cap on the roster to score 20 or more goals. Nick Backstrom has 18 and could easily join the 20-goal crew, which would give the Caps seven members, the most they’ve had since the high-flying 2009-10 season.

If Backstrom gets his 20th, it will be the sixth time the Caps hit that number.

Their best season for that stat? That would be 1992-1993, when they had nine.  That 20-goal crew included Peter Bondra, Kevin Hatcher, Dmitri Khristich, Mike Ridley, Al Iafrate, Pat Elynuik, Michal Pivonka, Sylvain Cote and Dale Hunter. In fact, Kelly Miller was just two off from being the tenth.

What’s interesting about this is it includes three defensemen, yet the the Caps have only had D-men score 20 or more 11 times in their history. Larry Murphy, Kevin Hatcher, and Sergei Gonchar each did it twice. Mike Green was the last to do it, scoring 31, just three short of Hatcher’s team record for a defenseman.

Alex Ovechkin accomplished this 14 times, followed by Bondra who did it 13 times. Gartner did it 10 times with the Caps.

Check out the chart below. Not surprisingly, the numbers peaked in the bad-goalie 1980s before plummeting in the offensively-challenged 90s.

Season Players High
1974 1975 2 22
1975 1976 2 26
1976 1977 3 36
1977 1978 2 38
1978 1979 6 31
1979 1980 4 36
1980 1981 6 50
1981 1982 6 60
1982 1983 7 38
1983 1984 7 40
1984 1985 5 53
1985 1986 7 41
1986 1987 6 41
1987 1988 4 48
1988 1989 5 42
1989 1990 5 41
1990 1991 6 24
1991 1992 7 38
1992 1993 9 37
1993 1994 4 29
*1994 1995 1 34
1995 1996 2 52
1996 1997 1 46
1997 1998 1 52
1998 1999 2 31
1999 2000 2 29
2000 2001 3 45
2001 2002 4 39
2002 2003 3 36
2003 2004 2 29
2005 2006 4 52
2006 2007 4 46
2007 2008 3 65
2008 2009 5 56
2009 2010 7 50
2010 2011 3 32
2011 2012 3 38
*2012 2013 1 32
2013 2014 3 51
2014 2015 3 53
2015 2016 6 50
2016 2017 5 33
2017 2018 3 49
2018 2019 6 48

*48 games