It is a commonly known fact that Phil Kessel is an iron man in the NHL. Since having shoulder surgery that caused him to miss 12 games in the 2009-10 season he has not missed a game at all. That’s quite impressive, especially for a man that is typically referred to as out of shape in the hockey community. The streak is all the proof anyone needs to use against anyone who tries to say Kessel is out of shape, especially winning two straight Stanley Cups and returning yet again with another full 82 game season.
If playing another full season wasn’t impressive enough, Kessel filled the stat sheet up with an amazing, and underrated, year. He finished the season with a career high 92 points, good for eighth in the league scoring charts, and for the third time in his career Kessel finished averaging at least a point per game. He bolstered the Penguins power play that ranked first in the league by a wide margin, leading the league in power play points with a total of 40. For a good portion of the year, Kessel had his name mentioned in Hart Trophy talks and at one point, looked like he could come from behind and steal away the Art Ross trophy.
Moving forward, Kessel will look to continue this scoring rampage heading into the playoffs where he, along side Evgeni Malkin and Sidney Crosby, look to lead the march of the Penguins to a third straight Stanley Cup. It seemed like Kessel was in playoff mode all season long, so fingers crossed he saved a little bit of that passion for the true playoffs.