BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) — The Sabres became the first NHL team this season with five players scoring 20 or more goals when Dylan Cozens reached the figure in the first period Saturday night’s victory in San Jose.
Cozens joined teammates Tage Thompson (36 goals), Alex Tuch (26), Victor Olofsson (23) and Jeff Skinner (21). The Sabres haven’t had this many players with this many goals in the same season since 2007-08 — Thomas Vanek (36), Derek Roy (32), Jason Pominville (27), Ales Kotalik (23), Jochen Hecht (22).
Moreover, going into Tuesday night’s game against the Toronto Maple Leafs at KeyBank Center, with a third of the season still left to play, Rasmus Dahlin has 14 goals and is on pace to finish with 21. The Sabres last had six 20-goal scorers in 2006-07 (Vanek-43, Chris Drury-37, Pominville-34, Daniel Briere-32, Maxim Afinogenov-23, Roy-21) on their way to winning the President’s Trophy.
Thompson (on pace for 55 goals), Tuch (39), Olofsson (35), Skinner (32) and Cozens (30) could give the Sabres five skaters scoring 30 or more for the first time since 1974-75, when Rick Martin (52), René Robert (40), Gilbert Perreault (39), Don Luce (33), Rick Dudley (31), and Danny Garce (31) led Buffalo the Stanley Cup finals.
With five of the top 65 goal scorers in the NHL, led by Thompson, who is tied for third on the league leaderboard, the Buffalo averages 3.7 goals per game and is on pace to score more than 300 in a season for the first time since 2006-07. If the Sabres exceed that season’s 308-goal total, it would be the most for the franchise in 30 years, since Alexander Mogilny’s 76 goals and Pat LaFontaine’s 53 paced Buffalo for 335 in 1992-93.
Jonah Bronstein joined the News 4 roster in 2022 as a digital sports reporter. Read more of his work here.