Mike Bossy


  • NHL: 1977-87; 10 seasons, all quality
  • 573G (5th All Time at his retirement[1. Bossy is now 21st All Time in Goals]), 553A for 1126P (16th at his retirement), +381 (10th[2. Bossy is now 15th All Time in Points]) in 752 games; 110.9 PS (23rd)
  • Bossy is 1st All Time in GPG and 3rd in PPG[3. Among qualifying players]
  • At his retirement, Bossy was 16th All Time in Offensive Point Shares
  • Era: Bossy is 1st in Goals,[4. Bossy is ahead by 112 Goals] GPG,[5. Bossy is ahead by .17 GPG] Points, PPG, OPS[6. Bossy is ahead by over 10 OPS] and PS[7. Bossy is ahead by over 15 PS] 4th in Assists and APG, 6th in Games [8. Of the 8 players to play in at least 750 games between 1977 and 1987]
  • 82-game average: 62G, 61A for 123P, +28
  • 3-year peak (1981-84): 80-game average of 62G, 74A for 136P, +57
  • Playoffs: 85G (6th[9. Bossy was the career leader in playoff goals from 1985 until 1989]), 75A for 160P (20th), +3[10. From 1983-84] in 129 games
  • Bossy is 2nd All Time in playoff GPG[11. Bossy was the career leader in playoff GPG in 1982] and 6th in PPG[12. Bossy was the career leader in playoff PPG from 1981 until 1983]
  • Adjusted: 461G, 445A for 906P
  • Adjusted 82-game average: 50G, 49A for 99P[13. Just about no player is affected more negatively by Hockey Reference’s adjustment for era than Mike Bossy]
  • Never traded.


  • Calder (’78)
  • Conn Smythe (’82)
  • Lady Byng (’83, ’84, ’86)
  • Top 5 Player[14. By Point Shares] four times (’79, ’81, ’82, ’83), Top 10 seven times (’84, ’85, ’86)
  • Best Offensive Player[15. By Offensive Point Shares] once (’79), Top 5 eight times (’78, ’81, ’82, ’83, ’84, ’85, ’86)
  • Scored 65 goals twice,[16. 1 of only 6 players ever] 60 goals five times,[17. 1 of only 2 players ever] 55 goals six times,[18. 1 of only 2 players ever] 50 goals nine times[19. 1 of only 2 players ever] 35 goals every season he was in the league[20. 1 of only 10 players to score 35 goals ten times]
  • Tallied 80 assists once, 60 assists thrice, 50 assists seven times, 50 assists eight times
  • Scored 140 points once,[21. 1 of only 9 players ever] 120 points thrice,[22. 1 of only 12 players ever] 110 points seven times,[23. 1 of only 4 players  ever] 90 points nine times,[24. 1 of only 8 players ever] 70 points every season he was in the league[25. 1 of only 10 players to score 70 points at least ten times at his retirement]
  • Led the league in Goals twice, Top 5 eight times, Top 10 nine times
  • Led the league in GPG one, Top 5 nine times, Top 10 every season he was in the league
  • Top 5 in Assists once, Top 10 thrice
  • Top 5 in APG twice
  • Top 5 in Points six times, Top 10 eight times
  • Top 5 in PPG five times, Top 10 eight times
  • Top 5 in Plus Minus thrice
  • 1st Team All Star five times, 2nd Team thrice
  • 7  All Star Games.

Great Teams

  • MVP on one Champion (’82 Islanders), Best Player[26. Bossy set the single-season record for points in a single playoff but somehow did not win the Conn Smythe trophy for reasons we can only guess at] on one Champion (’81 Islanders), Best Forward[27. By points] on one Final Four (’79 Islanders), Top 3 Forward[28. Led the playoffs in goals] on one Champion (’83 Islanders), Top 3 Forward[29. By points] on one Champion (’80 Islanders) and one Runner Up (’84 Islanders)
  • Top 3 Forward[30. By points] on one Canada Cup Runner Up (’81 Canada), Top 6 Forward[31. By points] on one Canada Cup Champion (’84 Canada).


For a long time, Bossy was my candidate for the Best Right Wing of All Time. But nobody[32. Not even Gretzky] is hurt more by adjusting for era than Bossy. The adjustment knocks nearly .3 PPG off his numbers. Everything else being equal[33. And everything else isn’t equal] it makes Bossy appear less dominant. There is also the chicken-or-egg question of whether Bossy’s numbers were inflated by playing on the second best team in the history of the NHL or whether Bossy helped make them that.[34. One could argue that Bossy’s stats make him look better than he is and he wasn’t even the best forward on his team some times.]

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