NHL: Top 50 Players Entering the 2019-2020 Season (40-31)
Last week, I also started a Top 50 players list heading into the 2019-2020 season for the NHL. I only released rankings 50-41 up to this point. As of right now, the list includes 50. Taylor Hall, C, New Jersey Devils, 49. Jamie Benn, F, Dallas Stars, 48. Roman Josi, D, Nashville Predators, 47. Morgan Rielly, D, Toronto Maple Leafs, 46. Vladimir Tarasenko, F, St. Louis Blues, 45. Ryan O’Reilly, C, St. Louis Blues, 44. Marc-Andre Fleury, G, Vegas Golden Knights, 43. Kris Letang, D, Pittsburgh Penguins, 42. Robin Lehner, G, Chicago Blackhawks, and 41. Victor Hedman, D, Tampa Bay Lightning.
Which players will be ranked 40-31?
40. Elias Pettersson, C, Vancouver Canucks
Pettersson is just 20 years old and he won the Calder Trophy last season. Elias Pettersson’s name was mentioned across the league for a good amount of time last season. He will be one of the reasons why Vancouver takes a big jump next season. They have not made it to the playoffs since the 2014-2015 season. Pettersson is a very good goal scorer and underrated playmaker. In 71 games played last season, he scored 28 goals and recorded 38 assists. His plus/minus was 3.
39. Alex DeBrincat, F, Chicago Blackhawks
DeBrincat isn’t the biggest player on the ice but he is really fast and slick. Alex DeBrincat is only 21 years old and Chicago might have found its next big star alongside Patrick Kane and Jonathan Toews. DeBrincat’s defense needs some work but he plays very hard from shift-to-shift. In 82 games played last season, Alex DeBrincat scored 41 goals and recorded 35 assists. His plus/minus was rating was even.
38. Jack Eichel, C, Buffalo Sabres
Eichel is one of the most talented players in the league, but he has been in a very bad situation in Buffalo. It appeared as if they were going to make it to the playoffs this year for the first time since 2010-2011, but they completely faltered. Jack Eichel could be tough to play with at times. He is very good offensively, but his defense could be better. In 78 games played last season, Eichel scored 28 goals and recorded 54 assists. His plus/minus was -11. He is only 22 years old.
37. Claude Giroux, C, Philadelphia Flyers
Giroux once again couldn’t lead the Philadelphia Flyers back to the playoffs once again this past season. There a lot of questions about him at times about his leadership. I thought Philadelphia should have tried to trade him at some point during last season and start all over. With that being said, the Flyers believe he will be one of the reasons why they win the NHL Stanley Cup one day. In 82 games played, Claude Giroux scored 22 goals and recorded 63 assists. His plus/minus was 9.
36. Patrik Laine, F, Winnipeg Jets
Laine has a wicked shot for a 21-year-old, but his defense really lacked last season. Patrik Laine is one of the best goal scorers in the league but he has to work on his passing and defense. In 82 games played last season, Laine scored 30 goals and recorded 20 assists. His plus/minus was -24.
35. Sebastian Aho, C, Carolina Hurricanes
The Carolina Hurricanes made it to the NHL Playoffs for the first time since the 2008-2009 season last year. Carolina made it to the NHL Eastern Conference Finals before they got swept to the Boston Bruins. Sebastian Aho played a big role in the Hurricanes success. They matched the Montreal Canadiens offer for him and Sebastian Aho is back with Carolina for the next few years. He is only 21 years old and Aho is only going to get better. In 82 games last season, he scored 30 goals and recorded 53 assists. His plus/minus was 25.
34. Jordan Binnington, G, St. Louis Blues
The St. Louis Blues were dead in the water last season until goalie Jordan Binnington was called up from the AHL after the new year. St. Louis went on a hot streak when he became the starting goalie. Binnington was one of the main reasons why the Blues were able to win the Stanley Cup for the first time in franchise history last season. He was a finalist for the Vezina Trophy (league’s best goalie), but Jordan Binnington did not win the trophy. In 32 games played last season, his record was 24-5-1 with a .927 save percentage and a 1.89 GAA, along with five shutouts. He re-signed with the Blues and Binnington is already 26 years old.
33. Carey Price, G, Montreal Canadiens
The Montreal Canadiens had a much better season than I thought they would have. Carey Price was one of the reasons why. Montreal could get back to the playoffs next season but it really depends on how healthy Price is. In 66 NHL games played last season, his record was 35-24-6 with a .918 save percentage and a 2.49 GAA, along with four shutouts.
32. Jonathan Toews, C, Chicago Blackhawks
Toews bounced back in a big way last season. He is a very good leader inside Chicago’s locker room. They have not made it to the playoffs for two straight years. Jonathan Toews will look to get the Blackhawks back to the playoffs for the first time since 2016-2017 this upcoming season. In 82 NHL games played last season, he scored 35 goals and recorded 46 assists. His plus/minus was 2.
31. Sean Monahan, C, Calgary Flames
Monahan was one of the reasons why the Calgary Flames were the number one seed in the playoffs last season. He is a very fast skater and Sean Monahan can strike at any moment. He also plays alongside with Johnny Gaudreau. Monahan played in 78 NHL games last season and he scored 34 goals and recorded 48 assists. His plus/minus was 7. Sean Monahan is only 24 years old and he is continuing to improve each season.
The 30-21 rankings will be released sometime next week.
How would you rank these NHL players? Leave a comment below.
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