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June 24, 2017
LCS Hockey's Annual Player Rating Extravaganza
by Jim Iovino, Ace Reporter
Eight years ago, LCS Hockey started a tradition of rating the best players in the NHL. While the top players at each position have changed over the years as the elite get older and, eventually, retire, a few constants have remained.
Patrick Roy, for example was ranked as the top goaltender on our original list back in 1994. Roy returned to the top of the list this season after posting career-best numbers during the 2001-02 campaign.
The other players from our original list -- Mario Lemieux, Brendan Shanahan, Pavel Bure, Scott Stevens and Ray Bourque -- have hung up the skates, slowed considerably or, in the case of Bure, lost interest.
In case you forgot the drill during LCS Hockey's absence, we rate the top 10 players at each position. Along with the cream of the crop, we also name a few honorable mentions, some guys moving up the ladder of success, some falling down, and some just plain confused about which way they're going. If you feel we overlooked a certain player, you can write to us and complain. That and 50 cents will get you a bag of potato chips.
In order to make our top 10, a guy has to do more than just score. Sure, hefty point totals help, but we take the player's entire game into consideration. Age, speed, skill, toughness, health, leadership...it all gets factored into the equation.
Here's a quick glance at the top players at each position for 2002-03:
Of course, the LCS player ratings extravaganza was rumored to be extinct after LCS Hockey's own retirement in 1999. But just like an aging superstar who believes he still has a little left in the tank, LCS returned during the second half of this past season to provide you, our valued readers, with more quality hockey entertainment.
With that said, you'll find the following links in our player rating extravaganza:
Oh, by the way, a certain publication that shall remain nameless recently released its top 50 players in the NHL. The publication, which begins with "The" and ends in "Hockey News", tabbed Nicklas Lidstrom as the best player in the league. While Nicky Lid is great an all, no way is he the best player in the game today. He's not even the best defenseman. We're not going to list the top 50 because there probably aren't 50 great players in the league, but here's the LCS Hockey Top 10:
We'll be back with the start of our 2002-03 Season Preview in late September. The Western Conference Preview will be posted on Monday, Sept. 23. The Eastern Conference will be uploaded the following week. Reading our stuff is a hell of a lot better than watching preseason games, so be sure to check it out. Or don't. I really can't force you to do it.
After a couple of years away from the sport, LCS is back, and we hope to provide you with the same quality entertainment and hockey knowledge you've come to expect from us over the years.
Hopefully, we won't disappoint. If we do, so be it. I mean, really, what do you want for nothin'?