Ranking the NHL’s 20 Most Dangerous Forwards in the Western Conference

The 20 Most Dangerous Forwards in the Western Conference

Jonathan Toews Patrick Kane
Getty Images

What does it take to be a dangerous force up front in the NHL? It doesn't just take size or speed, but a deadly combination of many things – like vision, puck movement, awareness and an unteachable ability to be clutch. Here are the 20 most dangerous forwards in the West.

20. Matt Duchene

Matt Duchene
Ron Chenoy - USA TODAY Sports

20. Matt Duchene

Matt Duchene
Ron Chenoy - USA TODAY Sports

Matt Duchene might see a decrease in production with Paul Stastny out of the picture in Colorado, but he's still established himself as one of the most consistent forwards in the league.

19. Shane Doan

Shane Doan - Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports
Matt Kartozian - USA TODAY Sports

19. Shane Doan

Shane Doan - Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports
Matt Kartozian - USA TODAY Sports

There's something to be said for the loyalty that Shane Doan has shown the Arizona Coyotes organization, but it would have been interesting to see what he could have done had he ever decided to leave. Doan is past his peak in the NHL, but he still has plenty left in the tank to keep making a splash.

18. Zach Parise

Chicago Blackhawks v Minnesota Wild - Game Six
Getty Images

18. Zach Parise

Chicago Blackhawks v Minnesota Wild - Game Six
Getty Images

Zach Parise is one of the most overpaid players in the NHL, but he's still one of the most dynamic two-way forwards in the league. If the Minnesota Wild are ever going to make a run at the Stanley Cup, Parise will have to be the guy who leads them there.

17. Dustin Brown

Dustin Brown
Getty Images

17. Dustin Brown

Dustin Brown copy
Getty Images

Dustin Brown solidified himself as one the best American-born captains in NHL history by winning his second Stanley Cup in three years this past June. Brown is a hard-nosed forward who plays on the edge and has consistently been the spark plug for the Los Angeles Kings.

16. T.J. Oshie

NHL team in Seattle? Team USA success in Sochi could make it happen.
Scott Rovak - USA TODAY Sports

16. T.J. Oshie

NHL team in Seattle? Team USA success in Sochi could make it happen.
Scott Rovak - USA TODAY Sports

T.J. Oshie won the hearts of many Americans for his performance in the 2014 Sochi Olympics, and he may be in for a spike in production with Paul Stastny coming to town.

15. Joe Pavelski

San Jose Sharks v New Jersey Devils
Getty Images

15. Joe Pavelski

San Jose Sharks v New Jersey Devils
Getty Images

Joe Pavelski quietly finished in the top-10 for points last season in the NHL and has developed quite the connection with Joe Thornton and Patrick Marleau. Commonly overlooked, Pavelski is a big reason for the Sharks' success over the last few years.

14. Gabriel Landeskog

Gabriel Landeskog
Ron Chenoy - USA TODAY Sports

14. Gabriel Landeskog

Gabriel Landeskog
Ron Chenoy - USA TODAY Sports

Gabriel Landeskog will eventually solidify himself as one of the best forwards in the NHL, but that day isn't here quite yet. If Landeskog can develop some chemistry with newly-acquired Jarome Iginla, the youngest captain in NHL history might have the most offensively productive season of his short career.

13. Jason Spezza

Ottawa Senators v Pittsburgh Penguins
Getty Images

13. Jason Spezza

Ottawa Senators v Pittsburgh Penguins
Getty Images

It may take some time for Jason Spezza to get adjusted to his new home in Dallas, but once he does, he should have no issues putting the puck in the net. With more weapons in Dallas than he's had in Ottawa, he could end up hitting the 80 or 90-point milestone.

12. Patrick Marleau

Patrick Marleau San Jose Sharks
Ed Szczepanski - USA TODAY Sports

12. Patrick Marleau

Patrick Marleau
Ed Szczepanski - USA TODAY Sports

One of these days, the San Jose Sharks are going to figure out how to win in the playoffs, and Patrick Marleau is going to be a huge piece of that puzzle. Marleau has solidified himself as one of the most dangerous offensive threats with the man advantage in the NHL – his 11 power play goals last season were the most he's had since 2010.

11. Patrick Sharp

Los Angeles Kings v Chicago Blackhawks - Game One
Getty Images

11. Patrick Sharp

Los Angeles Kings v Chicago Blackhawks - Game One
Getty Images

Often overlooked due to the two superstars he plays with, Patrick Sharp is one of the best all-around forwards in the league and contributes in every area of the ice. People point fingers in different directions when debating how Chicago has manifested continued success, but Sharp is definitely a keynote to that equation.

10. Jamie Benn

Jamie Benn
Jerome Miron - USA TODAY Sports

10. Jamie Benn

Jamie Benn
Jerome Miron - USA TODAY Sports

Speaking of overlooked talent, Jamie Benn has to be ecstatic that Paul Stastny is coming to town and he gets a high-scoring winger to play with down in Dallas. The captain of the Stars has to have his eyes set on the postseason and will need to be the best player in green and white every night if they want to punch their ticket to the big dance.

9. Taylor Hall

Colorado Avalanche v Edmonton Oilers
Getty Images

9. Taylor Hall

Colorado Avalanche v Edmonton Oilers
Getty Images

Taylor Hall had to face a ton of hype when he entered the NHL, but he's had no problems tackling the pressure head on. After finishing in the top-10 in scoring last season, don't sleep on the Edmonton Oilers if Hall can continue to improve next season.

8. The Sedin Twins

Vancouver Canucks v Edmonton Oilers
Getty Images

8. The Sedin Twins

Vancouver Canucks v Edmonton Oilers
Getty Images

If they were ever separated, we might see the true colors of the Sedin twins and maybe they'd just be ordinary forwards; but when they're together their connection makes them both elite players. Daniel has always been the purer goal scorer, while Henrik uses his vision and playmaking ability to find his brother from anywhere on the ice. Even with the Canucks' slide down the standings, the Sedin twins are still the scariest duo in hockey.

7. Joe Thornton

San Jose Sharks v Los Angeles Kings - Game Six
Getty Images

7. Joe Thornton

San Jose Sharks v Los Angeles Kings - Game Six
Getty Images

Jumbo Joe has turned into the face of the San Jose Sharks, and even at 35 years old, he continues to find ways to improve his game. Thornton's big body, puck protection skills and aggressiveness in the offensive zone have helped establish him as one of the best offensive-minded forwards in the game.

6. Corey Perry

Corey Perry
Gary A. Vasquez - USA TODAY Sports

6. Corey Perry

Corey Perry Anaheim Ducks
Gary A. Vasquez - USA TODAY Sports

Corey Perry may make headlines for his ridiculous tactics, but in reality he is also one of the goalscorers in today's NHL. The one-time 50-goal scorer and former Hart Trophy winner has been a big reason for the Anaheim Ducks becoming a consistent threat to represent the Western Conference in the Stanley Cup.

5. Tyler Seguin

Anaheim Ducks v Dallas Stars - Game Six
Getty Images

5. Tyler Seguin

Anaheim Ducks v Dallas Stars - Game Six
Getty Images

Tyler Seguin didn't need a lot of time to adjust to the Texas heat after coming over from the Boston Bruins, and now that he'll have Jason Spezza to play with, he's only going to get better. Seguin is one of the young players in the NHL who we could see hit the 100-point mark very soon.

4. Patrick Kane

Los Angeles Kings v Chicago Blackhawks - Game Five
Getty Images

4. Patrick Kane

Los Angeles Kings v Chicago Blackhawks - Game Five
Getty Images

When Patrick Kane's career ends, he will go down as one of the best American-born players of his or any era. No one has been more clutch in the postseason over the last five years than Kane, and even with a roster loaded with offensive talent, No. 88 has always found a way to stand out.

3. Anze Kopitar

Anze Kopitar copy
Getty Images

3. Anze Kopitar

Anze Kopitar
Getty Images

Dustin Brown may be the captain, Jonathan Quick may be the best goalie in the world and Justin Williams may have won the Conn Smythe Trophy as playoff MVP, but Anze Kopitar is the heart and soul of the Los Angeles Kings. The best Slovenian-born player in NHL history has made it possible for the Kings to win two Stanley Cups in three years, and he has solidified himself as one of the most dangerous players in the league.

2. Ryan Getzlaf

Ryan Getzlaf
Jerome Miron - USA TODAY Sports

2. Ryan Getzlaf

Ducks Getzlaf
Jerome Miron - USA SPORTS Today

Ryan Getzlaf proved in last year's playoffs that he isn't just one heck of a player; he's also tough as nails and won't let anything stop him from donning the Ducks' crest come playoff time. Even with a broken jaw, Getzlaf's production never floundered. He also led the Western Conference in scoring last year, and at age 29, he's approaching the peak of his career.

1. Jonathan Toews

Los Angeles Kings v Chicago Blackhawks - Game Seven
Getty Images

1. Jonathan Toews

Los Angeles Kings v Chicago Blackhawks - Game Seven
Getty Images

He may not be the flashiest or the fastest, but there isn't a player that is more developed than Jonathan Toews. He's revolutionized the center position in Chicago and, with his new contract, will be the face of the Blackhawks for a long, long time. It'll take more than just Toews and Kane, but don't be surprised if No. 19 leads the Hawks to two or three more Stanley Cups before 2020.

Around the Web