Lifestyle

The Top 10 in Hockey

Forwards, defencemen and goalies. These are the NHL's top producers at the lowest cost. But Cup worthy? You decide.

(For the complete lists, return to the hockey introduction.)

TOP 10 FORWARDS

This collection of forwards and centres are your best bet to produce without breaking the bank. A few are genuine superstars in the making and currently helping their teams through the playoff slog. Given how strongly salary factors into the calculations, perhaps most surprising is that only two of the skaters are bona fide rookies.

Rank Player Pos Team Points Salary $/Point
1 Kris Versteeg L CHI 53 $490,000 $9,245
2 Alex Burrows L VAN 51 $525,000 $10,294
3 Rich Peverley C ATL 44 $475,000 $12,329
4 David Krejci C BOS 73 $900,000 $12,917
5 David Booth L FLA 60 $775,000 $13,621
6 Anze Kopitar C LAK 66 $899,000 $14,286
7 Joel Ward R NSH 35 $500,000 $14,744
8 David Moss R CGY 39 $575,000 $14,744
9 Ryan Callahan R NYR 40 $600,000 $15,000
10 Brandon Dubinsky C NYR 41 $635,000 $15,488

Sources: NHLPA, NHL, HockeyBuzz, as of April 12, 2009

TOP 10 DEFENCEMEN

The modern NHL may highly value offensive-minded defencemen, but the bottom line never changes — they’re paid to help stop the opposition from scoring. You may find it surprising how this list breaks down, but the balance between performance and pay is there nd there’s a huge difference between a +32 and a +22. Here are the guys who do D best.

Rank Player Team +/- Salary TOI $/MOI*
1 Duncan Keith CHI 33 $1,600,000 1,968 $813
2 Dennis Wideman BOS 32 $3,250,000 1,946 $1,670
3 Willie Mitchell VAN 29 $3,500,000 1878 $1,864
4 Nicklas Lidstrom DET 31 $7,450,000 1,936 $3,848
5 Rob Scuderi PIT 23 $725,000 1,552 $467
6 Mike Mottau NJD 24 $750,000 1,422 $527
7 Jan Hejda CBJ 23 $2,000,000 1,835 $1,090
8 Brent Seabrook CHI 23 $3,500,000 1,912 $1,831
9 Mike Green WSH 24 $6,000,000 1,751 $3,427
10 Zdeno Chara BOS 23 $7,500,000 2,085 $3,597

* $/per minute on ice
Sources: NHLPA, NHL, HockeyBuzz, as of April 12, 2009

TOP 10 GOALIES

Established wisdom is that you build a successful team from the net out and, the Red Wings notwithstanding, it holds true. But unlike forwards and defencemen, it’s virtually impossible to do it on the cheap. So the lads below have this year missed the playoffs as often as not, but they really know how to stop a puck. Get a better five in front of them before their stock rises and they can easily be the difference between a Cup-run and golf.

Rank Player Team GAA Salary $/SV-$/SA*
1 Pekka Rinne NSH 2.38 $575,000 $36
2 Scott Clemmensen NJD 2.39 $500,000 $40
3 Jonathan Quick LAK 2.48 $550,000 $43
4 Tim Thomas BOS 2.10 $1,100,000 $47
5 Steve Mason CBJ 2.29 $1,000,000 $56
6 Peter Budaj COL 2.86 $800,000 $58
7 Mike Smith TBL 2.62 $950,000 $68
8 Ty Conklin DET 2.51 $750,000 $73
9 Alex Auld OTT 2.47 $1,000,000 $85
10 Jonas Hiller ANA 2.39 $1,300,000 $95

* This is effectively the cost of each goal allowed.
Sources: NHLPA, NHL, HockeyBuzz, as of April 12, 2009