Another week, another list from NHL Network which this time took a stab at ranking the top centers in the league. Since the start of NHL training camps and any real news to come from it is still a little bit away, let’s look a little bit this one since it involves our boy Mark Scheifele.
— NHL Network (@NHLNetwork) August 21, 2017
#55 ended up #10.
There are 31 teams in the NHL and each team (typically) has four centers, so that’s 124 centers in total and to be considered one of the ten very best is pretty darn good, right?
Only – and of course maybe there is some bias here – it feels like Scheifele was underrated here a bit.
— JetsNation (@NHLJetsNation) August 21, 2017
Sure going off points tallied in a season by centers and nothing else is a bit of a lazy argument, but it does beg the question if there are really nine other centers that are “better” than Mark Scheifele. Does he not perhaps warrant discussion as a top five center? Are we getting too greedy at this point?
As was mentioned in our look back at his past season during the Logbook series, Mark’s numbers put him in some pretty exclusive company:
Scheifele may not drive shot differentials to the same efficiency as Blake Wheeler or Mathieu Perreault, but he still is one of the Jets’ strongest forwards in that area while also producing elite production relative to ice time. Scheifele produced 2.51 five-on-five points per hour for the second consecutive season. Only Connor McDavid and Sidney Crosby produced more points relative to ice time (while also skating for 1000+ minutes).
Again, as mentioned last week when we looked over NHLN’s picks for top wingers, lists aren’t something to get too fired up over or take too much to heart. Some may value Scheifele over the likes of a Tyler Seguin or Ryan Getzlaf, while other may feel that Anze Kopitar and Leon Draisaitl are rated too low as well and need to be placed over Scheifele.
What’s your take? Is Scheifele rated too low? Who should he be placed over? Is he ranked about where he should be? Is he *gasp* too high?
Let us know in the comments below!