TSN Top 50 List Includes 3 Boston Bruins

By Emma Harger
Debby Wong-USA TODAY Sports

Each year, TSN puts out a list of the top 50 players in the NHL. This year’s list comes out just days before the 2013 season is set to begin and features three members of the Boston Bruins.

Zdeno Chara is the highest-rated Bruin at number 12, and two Bruins who weren’t on the 2012 list, Tyler Seguin and Patrice Bergeron, are at 31 and 35 respectively.

I think TSN erred in placing Seguin and Bergeron lower on the list than say, 33rd-ranked Nicklas Backstrom, who played half as many games because of injury, had 20 fewer points than Bergeron and a much lower plus/minus rating. The fact that Bergeron won the Selke Trophy doesn’t appear to have swayed things.

The methodology used here is a “cumulative point system based on individual rankings,” but that still doesn’t explain it very well to me. Consider: there was a time last season when the line with Seguin, Bergeron and Brad Marchand was among the best in the NHL. All three of them finished the most recent campaign in the top five for plus/minus for the entire league–Bergeron’s +36 was tops and got him the Plus/Minus Award too.

But by now I’m pretty much used to hockey pundits not really recognizing the abilities of Boston’s second line, especially of Bergeron, or recognizing it only to a lesser degree. Bergeron is far too humble to pump his own tires, but his body of work and achievements should really speak for itself and place him higher up among hockey’s best.

Last year, Chara was at number 10 on the list. This year, Erik Karlsson, the most recent Norris Trophy winner, is right above Chara at number 11. Speaking of tire-pumping, the only other Bruin on the 2012 list was Tim Thomas, ranked 14th (where Alexander Ovechkin is this year).

It should perhaps come as no surprise that Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin are first and second on the list.

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