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03-27-2013, 09:18 PM
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Originally Posted by quoipourquoi View Post
Receiving a single vote from one of 104 people on a three-center ballot does not make Fedorov a top-ten center. All it means is that one person had an unrealistically inflated opinion of him, as we have no record of what the other 103 of 104 voters thought of him. He couldn't even out-ballot players listed in the wrong position; that vote is meaningless and not at all reflective of your statement that he "received notable mention in Hart and All-Star voting... even in the first couple seasons after he left Detroit."
By that logic, we can't claim that the second-team all-stars are actually the second-best players at their position as we don't know what every single voter thought of them. What if the ~10-20 voters who omitted them would have ranked them 50th, and using a 50-place ballot would have ended up ranking them around 30th? That's a big difference from second.

Or how about this one. In 1993, Quebec Nordique Mike Ricci received a third-place vote at center. Mats Sundin scored 114 points, and Joe Sakic scored 109. But it was Ricci receiving a third place vote, tying him for sixth with the Islanders' Pierre Turgeon. Officially, Ricci and Turgeon were tied as the 6th-best centers in the league that year. We don't know what other voters thought (maybe he goes higher with more expanded voting? ) but what we can't say is that the voters who cast zero votes for any Quebec centers preferred Sakic/Sundin to Ricci. We can disagree with the selection, but there was at least one person in the media who felt Ricci was a top-three center in the league. Just as in 2004, someone felt Fedorov was #2. Having Naslund, Elias, St. Louis in the wrong position isn't the same because those guys had great seasons and maybe they did take some shifts at center (especially Elias). Being picked as the #2 center in the league by someone is a pretty good argument for "in the conversation for best player".

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