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06-29-2013, 11:12 AM
  #14
TheDevilMadeMe
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Quote:
Originally Posted by quoipourquoi View Post
More well-rounded, as he has developed into a competent 5th/6th forward on the penalty kill, but certainly not a better player than Selanne was when he was the best forward behind Lemieux and Jagr.
Ugh, the answer to this poll is definitely Selanne, but you are really not giving Kovalchuk credit. He's a top 4 penalty killer on NJ, and was last year when they had a record-setting PK in the regular season. Kovalchuk is an absolutely fantastic penalty killer, now. At even strength, his defensive effort is fairly inconsistent, but I would take it over any time during Selanne's prime. That said:

Quote:
http://www.hockey-reference.com/play...rder_by=points

That's three-straight years as a top-five finisher in the Hart Trophy race (top-three skater in voting each season). Kovalchuk's highest finishes were 10th place in 2012 and 11th place in 2004. Again, that's more in-line with the older Selanne, who finished 14th and 9th place in 2006 and 2007.
Basically, this. I don't see any reason to think Kovalchuk will ever overtake Selanne, who was quite a bit better for a stretch in the mid-late 90s than Kovalchuk ever was. At this stage in his career, I think it's highly unlikely that Kovalchuk hits a new level of play that would put him on the same level.

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