Drafted in the fifth round of the 2020 NHL Entry Draft by the New York Islanders, the expectations were low for William Dufour. That's not a shot at him, it's just the reality of late-round picks in the NHL draft.
But, two years since being drafted, Dufour is turning heads within the Islanders prospect pool. Because he can't stop scoring goals and if his pace keeps up (and it could very well keep up) he's going to smash the previous Saint John Sea Dogs franchise record for goals in a single season.
New York Islanders William Dufour on record breaking pace
The current Sea Dogs record for goals in a single season is 47. It was set back in 2011-12 by Danick Gauthier. Current NHLers Mike Hoffman and Jonathan Huberdeau came close to the record with 46 and 43 goals in a single season for Saint John.
William Dufour is about to crush that record. Through 39 games on the year, Dufour has 35 goals. Or 0.897 goals per game. In his last outing, Dufour scored goals 32, 33, 34, 35 on the year with a dominant four-goal performance.
At his current rate of scoring and assuming he plays out the rest of the ear (he's missed two games so far), Dufour could end the year with a whopping 59 goals. Twelve more than the current franchise record.
So what does this mean for him and the Islanders? Nothing more than he's ready for the next level. That's the AHL. The Islanders have until June 1, 2022, to get Dufour signed to a contract or they'll lose his NHL rights. I can't see that happen. Letting him walk would be incredibly shortsighted by the Islanders.
Not because he's a sure-fire lock to make the NHL. The jury is still out on if he can make the NHL or not. But what is clear is that this kid is ready to make an impact at the AHL level and he's already in the Islanders system. There's no reason not to see what he's got to offer.