The Pittsburgh Penguins lost to the New York Rangers on Thursday, but Sidney Crosby still managed to reach a personal milestone that has him inching closer to a Wayne Gretzky record.
With his two assists in the Penguins’ 4-2 loss, he reached 83 points for the 2022-23 season. That means he is guaranteed to finish the season with at least a one-point per game average. It is the 18th consecutive season he has done so, reaching that mark in every single one of his seasons in the NHL.
That is just one season short of the all-time record set by Wayne Gretzky, who averaged at least one point per game in 19 consecutive seasons.
Gordie Howe (17 consecutive seasons) is the only other player besides Crosby and Gretzky to reach that mark in more than 16 consecutive seasons.
It is a testament not only to Crosby’s greatness, but also his durability to still be such a top-tier player even into his late 30s. While Gretzky played the bulk of his career in the highest-scoring era of all-time (the 1980s and early 1990s), Crosby entered the NHL and played the early part of his career in one of the lowest-scoring eras with some of the best goaltending the league has ever seen. He also lost a significant portion of his prime years between 2010-11 and 2012-13 to head and neck injuries.
Despite all of that, he has remained one of the most productive players in league history. Also one of the most consistent.