Editorials

New York Islanders Mathew Barzal On Historic Assist Pace

By Matt O'Leary
NEW YORK, NY - FEBRUARY 19: Mathew Barzal #13 of the New York Islanders skates with the puck in the second period against the Minnesota Wild during their game at Barclays Center on February 19, 2018 in the Brooklyn borough of New York City. (Photo by Abbie Parr/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - FEBRUARY 19: Mathew Barzal #13 of the New York Islanders skates with the puck in the second period against the Minnesota Wild during their game at Barclays Center on February 19, 2018 in the Brooklyn borough of New York City. (Photo by Abbie Parr/Getty Images) /
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New York Islanders rookie Mathew Barzal is climbing the All-Time ranking in rookie assists and has a chance to be in elite company.

It’s no secret, the New York Islanders struck gold with Mathew Barzal this year. He’s exceeded any and all expectations for his rookie season and is now putting up a rookie year for the record books.

In the Islanders loss on Thursday night, Barzal continued his climb in the all-time assists category for rookies. He’s now seventh all time, with 56 helpers, trailing Mario Lemieux, by just one assist. The fact the Mario Lemieux and Mathew Barzal can be mentioned in the same breath is amazing.

With eight games remaining Mathew Barzal has a good shot to move up this list even more so:

Through 74 games this year Barzal has 56 assists. Over a full 82 game season that would put him on a current pace of 62 points. That would land him fourth all-time trailing Sidney Crosby and Bryan Trottier by just one assist.

Through the 2017-2018 season, Barzal is on a .76 assists per game rate. If he gets hot and has another five-point night in him which doesn’t seem out of the realistic realm of possibilities, Mathew Barzal could finish second all-time for assists by a rookie.

We’re really spoiled watching Mathew Barzal on a nightly basis, I think Islanders fans realize how good he is but aren’t 100 percent aware of how impressive his rookie year has truly been.

Just give the man the Calder already.

The unfortunate part is the Islanders wasting a historic rookie season for Barzal. The team is on the verge of being eliminated from the playoffs with eight games to go, and will likely have three players with 80 or more points this year.

Next: Sending Down Sebastian Aho Makes No Sense

It’s an absolute crime that the Islanders are this bad. With an outside chance, they have a rookie who beats out legend Bryan Trottier for second on the all-time list and still miss the playoffs. Embarrassing.

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