Oh hell yea he can. I can't wait to watch him this season at 100% from the start unlike last season. Maybe i've overblown his statements from the end of last season where he said he is going to be on the best shape of his life at the start of this upcoming season (since he can work out again unlike last offseason)...He's not an idiot, he knows his time is coming to an end sooner rather then later so he will go out with a huge bang before he goes on the decline. Or I hope...
Jagr will get over 100 points though if he stays healthy, hell I would bet my HF account on that even.
I think that the main reason Jagr is going to compete for the scoring title now is because he now has a much improved 2nd line in which opposing teams are going to have to respect almost as much as Jagr's line.
Taking some of the pressure off Jagr's line is going to free him up to be the same type of player he was when he notched 120+ points 2 years ago.
The talent is there not only for him, but for his linemates as well as the 2nd line. I can see him content for the scoring lead.
Now, I know that this is not an AO - Sid thread, and this is my opinion but Sid is THE best offensive player in the game right now.
His passing is a notch below that of Joe Thornton, but Sid can score goals in ways that either Joe can't or chooses not to.
Sid's not the goal-scoring machine that AO is, but the drop off in that area is not nearly as great as the drop off is between AO's passing skills and Sids.
I don't see that changing anytime soon.
The only thing that will keep Sid from staying a step ahead of AO is injuries. Sid is going to try to deke someone down the middle of the ice and get Steven'd.
Pens fan here. This is not a troll job or a comment about any comparisons of players anyone has made here. As someone who always has been a Jagr fan, let me note that Jagr could win the scoring title. Any one of a half dozen guys probably COULD. That said, how many points Jagr will score will depend upon the same three things it always has:
1. His health
2. His chemistry with linemates (and how he reacts, on the ice, to the loss of Nylander).
3. His mood.
As for Crosby, I have no clue how many points he will score. I will note that there are some variables, beyond his own play, which suggest that his point total should increase:
1. Too often last season, he was on the ice at 5 on 5 with Melichar and Scuderi. Those two contributed nothing offensively. They couldn't make a first pass, couldn't contribute in transition, and were so bad in the offensive zone that opponents would leave them wide open. Those two will be replaced by Sydor and Letang. What they do defensively notwithstanding, they will provide better offensive situation compliments for Crosby. The same goes for the PP, where 1:30 of Gonchar-Whitney followed by :30 of Eaton-Orpik will be replaced by Gonchar-Whitney followed by Sydor-Letang.
2. Crosby has Roberts for a full season, Sykora instead of Ekman, and second year guys in Malkin and Staal to surround him. That may not sound like a lot, but that's far better than any collection of forwards Crosby has worked with before.
All of this will be fun to watch. The Pens and Rangers should have some entertaining wide open games this season.
Sure he can challenge for it, but I think Crosby will win it. He is much younger and has a ton more to prove whereas Jagr has already proved everything. No doubt in my mind he will hit 100 points (it's been almost a cakewalk for him here), but I'm not so sure he can step it up further than that with a new line mate that he's never played with before. I'll give anything for him to have another monster season before he retires though. Something to really remember, even if it doesn't necessarily mean the Stanley Cup
Even if you're the rags and all - I would welcome Jagr to do that again. Class act and fantastic hockey player.
I can easily see him being top3 if he has a healthy year, but while I as a Pens fan might be too caught up in the Crosby lovefest, I just don't see anyone beating him to the Ross anytime soon. He is emerging still and so are the Penguins. Only way is up.