Photo: NBC Sports Washington
After a three-assist outing in the Washington Capitals‘ 5-3 win over the New York Rangers at Madison Square Garden on Saturday afternoon, defenseman John Carlson passed current-Detroit Red Wings defenseman Mike Green for the most points through the team’s first 22 games of a season with 25. Green, 33, had 23.
— NHL Public Relations (@PR_NHL) November 25, 2018
After signing a big eight-year contract worth $64 million ($8 million AAV), Carlson, 28, co-leads the Capitals with 12 power-play points along with center Nicklas Backstrom and is tied with Backstrom for the second-most points on the team behind captain Alex Ovechkin‘s 27.
After scoring a career-high 15 goals and 68 points in the regular season last year to lead all NHL defensemen, Carlson is third behind defensemen Morgan Reilly of the Toronto Maple Leafs and Thomas Chabot of the Ottawa Senators for most points among defensemen this season. Reilly and Chabot are tied for first with 27, two points ahead of Carlson. Chabot and San Jose Sharks defenseman Brent Burns’ 21 assists are one more than Carlson’s 20 for the most among defensemen in the league. Carlson’s 1.14 point-per-game average only trails Chabot (1.17) among defensemen.
Carlson has been able to carry the burden of offense by Capitals defenseman all while averaging 25:41 worth of ice time, the fifth most in the NHL.
It’s only been two months into the season but Carlson is living up to his big contract, especially with the absense of forwards T.J. Oshie and Evgeny Kuznetsov, who have missed the past five games with upper-body injuries.
By Harrison Brown