Predicting the NHL's top 10 point-producers in 2016-17

Predicting the NHL's top 10 point-producers in 2016-17

The Score - NHL Hockey

There's no shortage of high-end talent in today's NHL, yet overall point totals have been down in recent years, with only two players eclipsing 100 points over the past three seasons.

It's hard to say if triple-digit point totals will be reached in 2016-17, but here's a look at the projected top 10 scorers this season.

Sidney Crosby

Until further notice, Crosby remains the best player in the world.

Crosby started slow last season, but based on his second-half performance that culminated in a Conn Smythe Trophy to cap 2015-16, not to mention a dominant MVP run at the World Cup, the Pittsburgh Penguins superstar center appears set to add another Art Ross to his already legendary resume.

Connor McDavid

Putting Crosby on watch is none other than 19-year-old McDavid, whose rise to the ranks of the NHL's best began in an injury-shortened rookie season.

Among players with at least 41 games played, McDavid (1.07) ranked third behind Patrick Kane (1.29) and Jamie Benn (1.09) in terms of points per game.

Superstar production, and he's only getting started.

Patrick Kane

Kane separated himself from the field by reaching a career-high 106 points last season, 17 ahead of second-place Benn.

The reigning regular-season MVP was beset by injuries in each of the previous two seasons and only topped 85 points once prior to 2015-16, so it's yet to be determined if the recent offensive explosion was an anomaly or the new norm.

Jamie Benn

Over the past three seasons, Benn has recorded more points than every player not named Crosby. Fully recovered from offseason surgery, don't expect him to slow down anytime soon.

John Tavares

Set to become an unrestricted free agent next summer and out to prove his worth to the New York Islanders or prospective suitors, Tavares could be in for a monster season after a relatively down performance last season.

Tyler Seguin

The Dallas Stars are lucky enough to have one of the league's top duos on the roster, and Seguin - who's expected to be ready for opening night after leaving the World Cup due to injury - will continue to match Benn and the rest of the league's elite point for point.

Alex Ovechkin

While his overall point total will always be boosted by goals, Ovechkin's 21 assists in 2015-16 were the fewest he's recorded in a single season.

He hasn't exceeded 28 in any of the past five seasons, but another 50-goal season and even 25 assists will ensure a spot on this list.

Erik Karlsson

The NHL's best offensive defenseman could be slowed down a bit under new head coach Guy Boucher's system, but Karlsson always finds a way to get his name on the scoresheet.

Vladimir Tarasenko

The St. Louis Blues have committed to building around Tarasenko, and rightfully so.

The game's next great scorer is coming off his first 40-goal season, and a few more helpers will put him among the NHL's best, where he should remain for years to come.

Joe Thornton

The hulking San Jose Sharks center is showing no signs of slowing down, having finished fourth in total points last season with 82 points.

Thornton will be playing out the final year of his contract, and will prove himself worthy of a multi-year deal even in his late 30s.

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