- 09/29/2010, 05:29PM ET
Serial Dex said 09/29, 05:29 PM
1. Nick Backstrom (Wsh)
Born in 1987, this young player gives me TONS of talent and MANY years of hockey for my team. Having only played in 3 seasons so far his best years are yet to come.
101 Pts, +37 rating, 14.9 shot % and a 3rd consecutive year of improved output.
Some say HE is the real MVP of the Caps.
2. Drew Doughty (LA)
20 Years old (just 2 years younger than Backstrom) and already one of the best D-men in the league. He was a leading cause for LA making the playoffs last year.
He went from 27 pts and -17 rating to 59 pts and +20 rating.
The guy showed immense poise, talent and maturity for his age. Look for him to establish himself for some awards hardware next year. A real talent.
3. Alex Ovechkin (Wsh)
Hard to believe, but the guy is only 25 years old. There is no point in me listing his accolades, since he is always in the argument of "best player in the league."
In my 3 picks I have immense talent, youth and even chemistry (since Backstrom and Ovie play together already).
If I were to pick 3 guys to build around, these are the 3 I choose first.
YODA said 09/29, 07:06 PM
With 3 guys, I'd normally try to build a franchise from the back (goalie) outwards.
But the only goalie I trust these days is 30-yr old Ryan Miller, so I'll stick with the youth and go with 2 D-men and one forward.
1. Tyler Myers (BUF)
Won the 09-10 Calder trophy in a year stacked with rookie talent (Duchene, Jimmy Howard, Tavares, Hedman, etc.)
Myers adjusted to the NHL with uncanny ease. Along with Miller, Myers made an otherwise mediocre team (Sabres) into a legit threat.
Myers logged heavy minutes on both the PP and PK units and led all rookies in ATOI.
At 6'8" and only 20 yrs old, he'll fill out and add to his physical game.
2. Drew Daughty (L.A.)
Agreed. Pivotal in turning an otherwise flawed team (09-10 Kings) into a contender. He mixes offensive gifts with 2-way know-how. Could be a Norris finalist for the next decade. Myers and Daughty on the same squad is scary.
3. Toews (CHI)
I'll avoid another Sid vs. Ovie TD and go with another young captain who's showing it all at the elite level. 22 yrs old, playoff MVP, Cup champ, Gold Medal.
Oh, and even Nick Backstrom's mother calls Ovie the Caps MVP. GL.
Serial Dex said 09/29, 10:11 PM
I was hopin u would be brave enough (aka: silly enuf) to pick a goalie. Smart choice in skipping that.
Myers & Toews
Backstrom & Ovie
I like Toews a lot. He is a good player. But he hasn't put up the pts Backstrom and Ovie have, he hasn't even hit 70 pts in a season. He has fewer PP goals than both, even though he has been playing on a deep team and has stellar linemates.
I suppose you will point to his strong Olympic run and his good 2-way game, cuz my 2 guys are better in most other categories. One good tournament doesn't make a franchise player, or Buff wouldn't have been sent packing from CHI.
Myers was a beast this season. But it was his one and only season in the NHL. In his last 3 seasons of junior hockey, he averaged 25 pts a season over 61 games. Decent, but nothing to brag home about.
Myers has only 1 season to base your choice from, which is quite the gamble. Some other players who have had GREAT seasons at the start of their career?
Joe Juneau (70 pts rookie year, then hit 40 only twice more)
Jim Carey (All Star & Vezina winner first 2 years, then crap).
It's tough to pick them young, but you need some sort of baseline to use.
YODA said 09/30, 08:39 PM
Yes, Toews' was huge at the Olympics. And I'll skip right past the attempted minimalization of 2-way play and penalty-killing.
But where did "one good tournament" come from? 3 yrs ago, Toews' was MVP at the World Juniors (Sweden).
Besides, the SC Playoffs is THE toughest hockey tourney in the world (maybe all major sports). You're not giving Toews credit where it's due.
You even doubt his offensive contribution. To me, his 27.6 GOALS per yr avg compare nicely to Backstrom's 23 avg.
Some guys shine on the big stage. Others...don't (or at least not yet). Maybe Ovie and Nick will find that magic "chemistry" beyond the reg season some day.
And, of course, let's all hope Ovie's intense physical play doesn't shorten his career.
You see Myers' huge improvements year over year (even during the big jump to the NHL) as a negative? Odd.
Myers was already on a huge tear in junior. He won the WHL Playoff MVP and notched 20 points during Kelowna's championship run.
Joe Juneau as credible "baseline" for Tylers Myers? Juneau was a 6'0" forward. And Jim "The Net Detective Carey" was a flake goalie.
Let's get serious. Myers is a big 20 yr old phenom D-MAN.
Serial Dex said 10/01, 01:21 PM
Toews averages 4.6 more goals per year and you think that makes up for more than the 25 assists Backstrom leads by?
Backstrom has tallied 66 and 68 ASSISTS in the past 2 years. Toews has tallied 68 and 69 TOTAL POINTS. But yes, bring up that massive 4 goal difference you have the edge in.
"You see Myers' huge improvements year over year as a negative? Odd"
No, try reading what I said. And try looking at facts/stats. In 4 years he had ONE huge improvement. Myers produced 15 and 19 points, then jumped up big one year. In addition to poor offensive stats, he was -16 and -21 in +/- rating.
He was consistenly terrible in back to back years and now has 2 strong seasons back to back. That isn't improving year after year. Myers could very well be the next Chara (Myers is listed at 6'8") but he could also flop. We only have 1 year to go off, which is what I am saying.
Yes Juneau was a FW and Carey was a G. Positions don't matter. What matters, is that any player in any sport can have ONE good year and then flame out. Good TD yoda!
YODA said 10/02, 12:12 PM
Backstrom should have those numbers. He centered a line with Ovie (AND Semin for much of 09-10). The Caps were the top scoring NHL team.
BUT despite the goals and control of possesion time, the Caps were still a pedestrian 16th in goals against. A very serious franchise issue.
Since you have 2 KEY Cap players (Captain Ovie and Nick "the real MVP" Backstrom), I'll suggest right now that BOTH guys need to develop more defensive awareness if they want to get to the next level as leaders.
"Positions don't matter."
That's just silly. Flash-in-the-pan goalies are common. Reliable longterm netminders (Brodeur, Miller, Vokoun) are the exception, not the rule.
D-men are different. It usually takes a D-man until age 24-25 to mature at the NHL level. Doughty and Myers are team leaders at just 20 and they already contribute in all game situations (PK, EV, PP, physicality).
So I will thank you for mentioning Zdeno Chara as a proper potential prototype for Myers (SIZE + skill), but I'll also ask you to glance at former Calder winning D-men such as Potvin, Bourque, and Leetch...all cornerstones of their franchises.
Thx Dex and GL.
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