Colorado Avalanche Goals for Core Players in the 2017-18 Season

DENVER, CO - APRIL 06: Gabriel Landeskog
DENVER, CO - APRIL 06: Gabriel Landeskog /
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Matt Duchene

2016-17 Points: 41 (18 goals, 23 assists)
Career Best Stats: 70 points (23 goals, 47 assists) in 2013-14; 30 goals in 2015-16
2016-17 Shooting Percentage: 11.3%
Special Concern: shots on goal — 160

Center Matt Duchene has been the Colorado Avalanche’s best player for a while now. He’s the only core forward who’s achieved both a 70-point season and a 30-goal season. And yet the weight of the team has been placed solely on his shoulders. It doesn’t help that the man himself is his own worst critic.

Well, it certainly is true that Duchene didn’t have a season to be proud of last year. He earned only 41 points and didn’t even crack the 20-goal mark.

That said, there were some positives in Duchene’s game last year. He had an impressive 11.3% shooting accuracy. Unfortunately, his shot total was only 160. Matt is ever known for being the player who looks for the pretty play.

Here are three goals I’d like to see Duchene reach this season:

  • Maintain at least 10% shooting accuracy
  • Increase shot total to 200+
  • Record 70 points

Most top forwards have around a 9% shooting accuracy. However, Duchene has never dropped that low — his lowest year was 2014-15 at 10.1% Career-wise, his accuracy is 12.2%. However, there’s a downside to that…

Duchene doesn’t take a lot of shots. Over the course of his career, his average shot total is 179. He’s had several 200+ shot years — I’d like to see him there again. That’s how a player with Duchene’s shooting accuracy scores 20+ goals. (His 30-goal year came with 200 shots and 15% shooting accuracy.)

I’d love to see Matt Duchene score 30 goals again. However, it looks good that he’ll skate on a line with another sniper, Nail Yakupov. So, even if Dutchy doesn’t quite make 30 goals, I think he should achieve 70+ points. He did so one other time and came close in 2010-11 with 67 points.