He’s already won the Calder Trophy, Norris Trophy, Stanley Cup, and Conn Smythe, yet somehow, Cale Makar keeps getting more impressive.
On Monday night, the Colorado Avalanche defenseman recorded his 200th NHL point and became the fastest blueliner to ever do it. The previous record-holder was Sergei Zubov, who needed only 207 games to reach 200 points.
If you would have asked me about that record, I would have told you that it might never be broken. I mean, 200 points in 207 games for a defenseman is wildly impressive. Makar, however, needed only 195 contests to eclipse the 200-point mark.
Makar is the only D-man to hit 200 points at a point-per-game pace.
The 24-year-old scored his fifth goal of the season on Monday against the Dallas Stars to pick up his 200th point. On the year, he now has 15 assists to go with his five goals, giving him a total of 20 points in 17 games.
Makar ranks third among Colorado skaters in both assists and points. He also ranks third among NHL defensemen in points, trailing only Adam Fox of the New York Rangers (21) and Erik Karlsson of the San Jose Sharks (29).
If he continues at this rate, 2022-2023 will be his third straight season with a point-per-game average. He notched a career-high 86 points in 77 games last season and 44 points in 44 games the year before.
Makar’s 200 points have come in the form of 53 goals and 147 assists over his 195 career games, all with the Avalanche. He carries a plus-84 rating for his career.
I don’t think that the impressive nature of this milestone can be overstated. Scoring a point per game is the benchmark for an outstanding offensive season or career, but that rarely gets applied to defensemen, especially in a volume of games that spans parts of four seasons in the league.
Without question, Cale Makar is the NHL’s premiere defenseman, and if the first 195 games of his career are indicative of what’s to come for the Calgary native, then he will be firmly in the running for the title of best defenseman in NHL history when it’s all said and done.