Quote:
Originally Posted by Big Phil
Nice work, yes those were the first two seasons I was thinking about as well. Gretzky was close in 1998, 12 points off, but he never led the league at any point since he went on a tear at the end of the year.

Gretzky had 7 points after 5 games during the '98 season, not sure if that was good enough to be leading the league at that point. Either way, he was 36, so not as old as Lemieux in '03. Mario hadn't really played a full season since '97, and he still couldn't in '03. I had forgotten what a huge lead he had that year. Just including him and the top 3 finishers ("games" are GP by team):
After 29 games each: Lemieux 55, Thornton 40, Naslund 32, Forsberg 28
After 41 games each: Lemieux 68, Naslund 55, Thornton 52, Forsberg 43
He missed 10/11 games after that.
After 52 games each: Lemieux 68, Naslund 65, Thornton 63, Forsberg 57
That was one heck of a race though.
After 67 games each: Lemieux 85, Naslund 85, Forsberg 84, Thornton 82
After games 75 & 76, Forsberg, Naslund, and Thornton were all within one point of each other.