The ratings for the top 50 players in EA Sports’ NHL 17 have been released and here are some of my thoughts on which players were rated too highly.
5. Corey Crawford – Chicago Blackhawks – 90 Overall – Ranked 45th
Crawford has had a luxury that no other player on this list has had. Quite simply, its playing for a dynasty. Ever since coming into the league in 2005, Crawford has had to fight to show he is worthy of being known as a top keeper and has never made that qualification for me. Not once in his career has he played 60 games and even though his regular season stats look good, never forget the playoffs where all of his stats have constantly risen and even lead to him being benched a few times. Put this man in front of even an average team and he would have the reputation of James Reimer.
4. Jakub Voracek – Philadelphia Flyers – 90 Overall – Ranked 44th
I am not denying that Jakub has great offensive abilities, far from it. I am denying that he is worthy of being in the 90+ club. After a huge 2014-2015 season, Voracek’s point total dropped by 26 points and was a -5 player playing on the top line of a playoff team. In your career when you have only had one season where you hit 63 points, and only recorded one point in six games this postseason, you are not worthy of this rating.
3: Kevin Shattenkirk – St. Louis Blues – 90 Overall – Ranked 37th
A mainstay on the Blues top defensive pairing for a few years now, Shattenkirk has proven he is one of the better defenders in the league but a 90 overall? St. Louis finished last season with 107 points and one of the best goaltending tandems in the league. So how did Shattenkirk manage to be a -14 player in the regular season and a -8 player in the postseason and get this rating EA? I would love to know.
2. Pekka Rinne – Nashville Predators – 91 Overall – Ranked 32nd
After the first few months of the season it looked like Pekka was on his way to Vezina consideration, but it was a nightmare second half for the Nashville keeper. Rinne finished the year with a 2.48 GAA along with a dreadful .908 SV% to go along with a 2.63 GAA and even worse .906 SV% in the playoffs. There have been times Rinne has played like an elite goalie but he has done absolutely nothing to deserve being a 91 overall.
1. Marc-Andre Fleury – Pittsburgh Penguins – 90 Overall – Ranked 46th
Just like Crawford, Fleury has also enjoyed the luxury of being protected by one of the best teams in the league since his arrival in the NHL. Pittsburgh has provided Fleury with two rings in his career and I say provided because in 2009, the Pens won the cup even though their goalie had a 2.61 GAA to go along with a .908 SV%. This past season, Fleury was injured going into the postseason, got a chance to play when Matt Murray struggled, and benched after two poor performances. Please tell me how a player with a career 2.66 GAA in the playoffs and a 2.56 career regular season GAA on arguably the best team in the East since his career began in 2003 and gets a 90 overall. Shenanigans that’s how.
And that is my top 5 for overrated players in this year’s NHL 17. Have a different opinion? Comment below and be heard!