Editorials

NHL Power Rankings: Top Western Conference Defensemen

By Matt Barbato
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I continue my offseason Western Conference power rankings with a look at the players manning the blue line. Determining the 10 best defensemen in the loaded Western Conference was no easy task. Finding a balance between scoring ability, possession numbers and pure defensive ability was challenging.

In most cases, the tiebreakers came down to the advanced statistics outside of goals, assists and plus/minus rating. I evaluated Corsi percentages, as well as the ratio of zone starts. Players that had high Corsi-for percentages and did it while taking most of their starts in the defensive zone held precedent over flashier defensemen who fell short in the aforementioned areas.

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A couple quick notes:

— The Central Division owned the majority of entries on the list, with six of the top 10 defensemen coming from the Central.

— Honorable mentions include Minnesota’s Jonas Brodin, Calgary’s T.J. Brodie and Nashville’s Seth Jones.

— All advanced statistics came from war-on-ice.com.

Next: Who's No. 10?

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