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Breaking Down the CHL's Top Scorers for 2021-22

Three NHL-affiliated forwards led their respective CHL leagues in scoring this year. Ian Kennedy has a breakdown on Wyatt Johnston, Arshdeep Bains and Joshua Roy.
Wyatt Johnston

Often in the Canadian Hockey League, the focus is put on draft-eligible players. But rarely are those players also the leading scorers of the OHL, WHL, and QMJHL loops. Typically, the players leading these leagues are veterans either drafted by NHL teams or signed as free agents.

This year, the top scorers from each league fit that description, including a former NHL first-round pick, a mid-round prospect, and a player signed as an NHL free agent. Here is a look at the leading scorer from each Major Junior league in the CHL.

OHL - Wyatt Johnston - Windsor Spitfires

Drafted 23rd overall by Dallas in 2021, Wyatt Johnston proved his worth in a big way. After missing the entire 2020-2021 season due to COVID-19 cancellations, Johnston provided punch for the first place Windsor Spitfires, scoring 46 goals and 124 points in 68 OHL games to lead the league. 

In the last decade, only five players have scored more points in a single OHL season than Johnston. Those players include NHLers Mitch Marner, Alex DeBrincat, Connor Brown, Dylan Strome, and Kevin Leblanc. Perhaps the best part of Johnston’s game is that he doesn't sacrifice defensive responsibilities for offensive opportunities. He’s a versatile center who could be shifted to the wing at the NHL level.

WHL - Arshdeep Bains - Red Deer Rebels

At the beginning of the season, no one would have predicted Arshdeep Bains to be the leading scorer despite stringing together a pair of solid WHL campaigns. Bains scored 43 goals and 112 points in 68 games for Red Deer and will join the Vancouver Canucks organization after signing an entry-level contract.

Bains is the first player of South Asian descent to win the WHL scoring title. He will require seasoning in the AHL, but with Vancouver teetering between contender and rebuild, opportunities to advance will be present if he can translate his scoring to the pro game.

QMJHL - Joshua Roy - Sherbrooke Phoenix

Montreal Canadiens fans will be excited to see Roy’s name atop the QMJHL scoring charts. A fifth-round selection of the Canadiens in 2021, Roy has exceeded expectations this year and earned an entry-level contract with Montreal. He scored 51 goals and 119 points in 66 games for Sherbrooke. Entering this season, Roy was considered a shoot-first player, at times to his own detriment. Who could blame him when pucks continued to find the back of the net? 

This season, however, Roy arrived in better physical shape and started diversifying his attack, dishing the puck more often to teammates, and as a result, creating more space and better scoring chances for himself. Despite scoring a point per game in last year’s shortened season, Roy could easily be called one of the most improved players in the QMJHL, a strange moniker to ascribe to the league’s leading scorer.

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