It's not exactly breaking news, but The Hockey News' annual yearbook is out, complete with its ranking of the top fifty players in the NHL (see last year's rankings here), and here's their pick for number one:
Three other Caps made the top fifty as well (rankings and blurbs - presented without comment - below):
22. Mike Green. He gained 25 pounds last season when he sat out with a shoulder injury, but that didn't prevent Green from leading all defensemen in goals. His playoff performance exposed his defensive flaws, but what he lacks in his game can be taught. What he has, can't be.
27. Nicklas Backstrom. With 121 assists in his first two seasons, Backstrom has undoubtedly benefitted from playing with the NHL's best goal-scorer in Ovechkin. But who's to say Ovechkin would have this many goals if not for Backstrom's great passes?
40. Alexander Semin. There was a time last season when Ovechkin wasn't only not the best player on the Capitals, he wasn't even the best Alex. That designation belonged to Semin, who increased his production over 2007-08 by 37 points and his plus-minus by 43 (from minus-18 to plus-25).