At the end of March 2020, the National Hockey League’s Player Association (NHLPA) Player Poll was released for its 2019-20 edition. Nearly 600 NHL players, from all 31 National Hockey League clubs, were surveyed on more than 20 hockey-related questions. The players were asked to give their opinions about a variety of topics. Some of these questions asked then about hockey skills, hockey arenas, the different teams, and some fun from off the ice.
In this post, I want to share some of the results from the players poll, but here with some specific look at where the Edmonton Oilers’ generational star Connor McDavid showed according to the poll.
Here are this season’s NHLPA results. I just to share a note that the data from these polls were collected just prior to the NHL season’s suspension of play on March 12.
In reference to McDavid, there were some surprises. Some surprises were in a good way: specifically, so many of his NHL peers thought him to be one of the best players in the NHL. However, one thing surprised me in an “interesting” way. I’ll comment upon that surprise as it comes up.
Please also note that I have not covered all the questions, only the ones that I believed were relative to the Oilers’ star player.
Question One: Who is the best forward in the NHL?
Here McDavid showed well, with just over two-thirds of all NHL players voting for him as the NHL’s best forward. Specifically, 68.35% named Connor McDavid of the Edmonton Oilers number one. Sidney Crosby of the Pittsburgh Penguins came in second with 14.93% of the vote; Nathan Mackinnon of the Colorado Avalanche came in third with 6.65%; and, Nikita Kucherov of the Tampa Bay Lightning came in fourth with 2.88% of the vote.
Although there are many exceptional forwards in the game, McDavid is a rare combination of speed and skill. He won this category for the second year in a row.
Question Two: If you needed to win one game, who is the one player (any position) you would want on your team?
The voting was close about the answer to this question, but 44.03% of the players went with the winning experience of Sidney Crosby. Here McDavid came in second with 30.53% of the vote; Nathan Mackinnon came in with a much lower 4.11%; and, Patrice Bergeron of the Boston Bruins recorded 3.33% of the total vote.
Question Three: Who is the most complete NHL player?
Now here’s a surprise. When NHL players answered this question, it might be no surprise that 45.56% of them again named Sidney Crosby; however, Connor McDavid wasn’t named in the top four. How could a player be the best forward in the NHL and not do well as the most “complete” player? That surprised me.
After Crosby, 25.44% of the players chose Patrice Bergeron; then 7.50% chose Aleksander Barkov of the Florida Panthers; and, in fourth place, 5.33% chose Ryan O’Reilly of the St. Louis Blues.
Question Four: Of all players past or present, who would you pay to see play?
In the final question I will share data about, 31.83% (almost a third of the NHL players who voted named Wayne Gretzky of the Edmonton Oilers as the player they’d pay to see play; 14.99% chose the Boston Bruins Bobby Orr; 9.24% chose the Pittsburgh Penguins’ Mario Lemieux; and, finally, 7.80% chose the Oilers Connor McDavid.
There were a number of interesting notes about the answers to this question. Other than McDavid, the remaining players have finished their careers and have been named to the Hockey Hall of Fame. I also found it interesting that, other than Wayne Gretzky, all the players had played their entire careers with the same team.
If you’re an Edmonton Oilers fan, you’d hope that would be true of McDavid as well. First, that McDavid would one day be named to the Hockey Hall of Fame. And, second, that he’d both begin and end his career in an Edmonton Oilers’ uniform.
Here at NHLTradeTalk.com, we want to congratulate McDavid on his being so successfully named by his peers to so many of these honors.
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