Backstrom isn't a top 50 least according to Fanhouse


If you’ve been following AOL’s Fanhouse countdown of the top 50 players in the NHL, you’ve probably been wondering where our Nik Backstrom was going to end up. After Alex Semin came in at 28 and Mike Green arrived at 26, many of us were figuring Nik would come in somewhere in the high teens. Well, I hate to disappoint you, but it’s pretty obvious now that Backstrom isn’t going to make the top 50 list. Jarome Iginla just popped in at the #5 spot and Ovechkin, Malkin, Crosby and Datsyuk still haven’t been named. So I would say the chances are slim and next to none that Backstrom is going to make the list. For those of you keeping count, that means that the writer who compiled the list, Adam Gretz, has adjudged guys like Shane Doan, Brenden Morrow, Paul Stastny, Patrick Kane and the Sedin twins, just to name a few,  to be better players right now than Nik. And I say “right now” because that’s the criteria the author used in determining who would make his top 50.


“It's simply about the best players right now. Well, it's my opinion of the best players right now. Age isn't a factor and, most importantly, contracts don't matter. This isn't about the best values, or the best contracts, or the players with the best long-term upside, it's just about the best players”, wrote Gretz.


If he had said he was basing who made the list on what they’ve accomplished over the course of their careers, I could understand a little better his leaving Backstrom off. However, by his own words, career achievements had nothing to do with his rankings. So, if we’re living in the “now”, based on last year you’d have to go all the way down to the #24 ranked player, Marc Savard, to find someone who scored as many points as Nik did last year. And all the way to the #19 ranked player, Ryan Getzlaf, to find someone who had as many assists.


And if you think one year is too small a sample, then compare the last two years for all the guys I listed at the top of the page. When you do that, only Henrik Sedin has a higher total (and that’s by just one point):

Henrik Sedin-158 points

Nik Backstrom-157 points

Daniel Sedin-156 points

Shane Doan- 151 points

Patrick Kane- 142 points

Paul Stastny- 107 points

Brenden Morrow- 89 points


Now, a couple of those guys, Stastny and Morrow, had injuries but shouldn’t durability be a plus in evaluating a player’s worth?



I know in the grand scheme of things, this listing means nothing and there are probably a lot of other deserving players left off. Here in Washington, we all understand what a special talent Nik is and given his age, there are only a handful of players I’d rather have before him. Still, when I see guys like Thomas Vanek ranked in the top 50, I have to wonder what Adam Gretz is thinking when he puts this list together.


For those of you that care, here’s the entire list to date. Based on his previous ranking, I can only guess who’s going to be his #1.


No. 50 -- Shane Doan, Phoenix Coyotes
No. 49 -- Brenden Morrow, Dallas Stars
No. 48 -- Paul Stastny, Colorado Avalanche
No. 47 -- Patrick Kane, Chicago Blackhawks
No. 46 -- Dan Boyle, San Jose Sharks
No. 45
-- Brian Rafalski, Detroit Red Wings
No. 44 -- Shea Weber, Nashville Predators
No. 43 -- Tomas Kaberle,Toronto Maple Leafs
No. 42 -- Andrei Markov, Montreal Canadiens
No. 41 -- Scott Niedermayer, Anaheim Ducks
No. 40 -- Kimmo Timonen, Philadelphia Flyers
No. 39 -- Johan Franzen, Detroit Red Wings
No. 38 -- Anze Kopitar, Los Angeles Kings
No. 37 -- Jay Bouwmeester, Calgary Flames

No. 36 -- Jeff Carter, Philadelphia Flyers
No. 35 -- Dion Phaneuf, Calgary Flames
No. 34 -- Jason Spezza, Ottawa Senators
No. 33 -- Marian Gaborik, New York Rangers
No. 32 -- Daniel Alfredsson, Ottawa Senators
No. 31 -- Evgeni Nabokov, San Jose Sharks
No. 30 -- Thomas Vanek, Buffalo Sabres

No. 29 -- Sergei Gonchar, Pittsburgh Penguins
No. 28 -- Alexander Semin, Washington Capitals
No. 27 -- Martin St. Louis, Tampa Bay Lightning
No. 26 -- Mike Green, Washington Capitals
No. 25 -- Niklas Backstrom, Minnesota Wild
No. 24 -- Marc Savard, Boston Bruins
No. 23 -- Mike Richards, Philadelphia Flyers
No. 22 -- Zach Parise, New Jersey Devils
No. 21 -- The Sedin Twins, Vancouver Canucks
No. 20 -- Rick Nash, Columbus Blue Jackets
No. 19 -- Ryan Getzlaf, Anaheim Ducks
No. 18 -- Eric Staal, Carolina Hurricanes
No. 17 -- Chris Pronger, Philadelphia Flyers
No. 16 -- Dany Heatley, Ottawa Senators
No. 15 -- Marian Hossa, Chicago Blackhawks
No. 14 -- Vincent Lecavalier, Tampa Bay Lightning
No. 13 -- Ilya Kovalchuk, Atlanta Thrashers
No. 12 -- Zdeno Chara, Boston Bruins
No. 11 -- Martin Brodeur, New Jersey Devils
No. 10 -- Henrik Lundqvist, New York Rangers
No. 9 -- Joe Thornton, San Jose Sharks
No. 8 -- Henrik Zetterberg, Detroit Red Wings
No. 7 -- Nicklas Lidstrom, Detroit Red Wings
No. 6 -- Roberto Luongo, Vancouver Canucks
No. 5 -- Jarome Iginla, Calgary Flames

If this FanPost is written by someone other than one of the blog's editors, the opinions expressed in it do not necessarily reflect those of this blog or SB Nation.

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