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Lightning Round: Victor Hedman moves up the all-time Lightning leaderboard

Only two players in franchise history have more assists than the Big Swede

Los Angeles Kings v Tampa Bay Lightning Photo by Scott Audette/NHLI via Getty Images

Remember a few weeks ago when everyone was shouting, “What’s wrong with Victor Hedman?” Well, it seems he’s back to being Victor Hedman. Over his last nine games he has 13 assists and five multi-point games. With two more assists last night against the Chicago Blackhawks, Hedman moved up the all-time assist charts for the Tampa Bay Lightning:

While he’s still well behind the pace he set last year, he’s quietly crept up to 25 points (1 goal, 24 assists) in 34 games this season. That has him tied for 19th amongst defensemen in the league (did anyone have Josh Morrissey and Erik Karlsson in their Norris Trophy pools this year?).

Among active defensemen his 493 assists ranks 6th and he’s likely to crack 500 helpers before he hits 1,000 career games. That’s fairly impressive for a blueliner, even one that sees as much power play time as he does. The Big Swede has been a consistent point producer, churning out seven consecutive seasons of at least 40 points and in six of his 14 years he has topped 50 points.

Would it be possible for him to finish his career in the top spot in assists? Possibly. Currently Marty St. Louis sits atop with 588. Steven Stamkos is second with 512. If Stammer decides to hang it up when his contract expires after the 2023-24 season, the gap between the two might not be too great. Hedman is under contract through the 2024-25 season and will be 34-years-old at that point. Still, with the way he plays, it wouldn’t be out of bounds to think he could play well into his late 30s (if he wants to). If he does that, the 588 number (or whatever Stamkos ends up with) could come into play.

Not only does Hedman provide the offense, he’s not too shabby in his own end either:

Of course, in two or three years, Nikita Kucherov will be entering the conversation as well. He’s currently 5th in the organization with 410 helpers, but with the way he can pile them up in bunches, it won’t be long until he’s knocking on the door to 500.

We really are in the golden age of Lightning hockey, aren’t we?

Lightning / NHL News

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