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06-16-2013, 12:22 PM
Sidney the Kidney
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Originally Posted by Chancellor Vitale View Post
Not saying he's a BAD defensive player. I'm saying I'm not sure that I'd put him top 15 in the league. There are many great defensive forwards out there. Substract his offense and +/- (a borderline useless stat for most players and situations) and just look at his defense.

I agree his defense has improved the last season or two but that's neither here nor there. Faceoffs too at times. But look at guys like Matt Cooke for Chrissakes. Is Matt Cooke a better defensive forward than Sidney Crosby? Can you bring yourself to say it? That's sort of my point.

The league has sort of set this up like "OK we're going to call it best defensive forward but what we're really going to do is look at a dozen or so guys who get lots of points AND play sound defensive hockey, and we'll give it to one of those guys most years." The points shouldn't enter into the equation, neither should +/- except for player who aren't lined up with big point-getters, or who, like Dupuis, are potting lots of even strength goals.

Of the high end offensive guys really only Datsyuk, usually Hossa, Bergeron and a few others have truly great defensive games. As in you can count on it. I know it's not a year-to-year award, there I'm just point out the trend of how one might discern if Crosby's defensive game is "elite".

Anyway, this is about Dupuis and recognizing his skill (and defensively he's more than 8 slots better than Crosby in the real world), so I'll leave it at that.
Thing is, Selke's become more of a "Best Two-Way Forward" award, not just a best defensive forward award. Look at the guys at the top of the voting. All have the prerequisite offensive totals. Heck, Dupuis finished as high as he did largely because he's got the offensive totals that he didn't have in previous seasons.

So in that context, I don't see why Crosby being 15th in the league in terms of "two way forwards" is such a stretch. Similarly, that's why Dupuis will almost always finish below guys like Toews, Datsyuk, etc. despite being as good (or better) defensively than some of them. His offensive totals just aren't great enough to qualify for the voters' mythical "two way stud" template.

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