Chara, Bergeron, Lucic earn honors in NHLPA poll
Boston Bruins captain Zdeno Chara, assistant captain Patrice Bergeron and Milan Lucic earned honors in the annual NHLPA Player Poll, released today by CBC in Canada.
To no surprise, Chara was voted by fellow peers as having the hardest shot getting 59-percent of the vote — 26 percentage points ahead of Nashville Predators blue-liner Shea Webber — while also earning honors as the toughest defenseman to play against by a larger percentage (61-12) over Weber.
Bergeron, earned honors as the most underrated player in the league earning 9-percent of the vote; three percentage points ahead of Dallas Stars forward Jamie Benn, who was second.
Lucic, meanwhile was voted as the toughest player getting 20-percent of the vote. Chara (17 percent) and Shawn Thornton (11-percent) were second and third in the same category, respectively.
Detroit Red Wings forward Pavel Datsyuk earned the most accolades of any player with six — smartest player, most difficult to play against, hardest to take the puck from, player most difficult to stop [goalies only], cleanest player to play against and toughest forward to play against — while Tim Thomas finished was voted the third toughest goalie to score on [skaters only] behind Pekka Rinne and Henrik Lundqvist.
In the same poll, the Vancouver Canucks were voted as the most overrated team earning 24 percent of the vote, proving that they don’t get much love even outside of The Hub of Hockey.
The Bruins were third on the team players would most like to play on with 11 percent — behind the Blackhawks (14 percent) and Red Wings (11 percent) — while the TD Garden was a tie for fifth along with the Air Canada Centre in Toronto as the players’ favorite rink to play in 28 percentage points behind the Bell Centre in Montreal, which was voted first.
Also of note, 53 percent of the 318 players that voted said that the instigator rule should not be abolished. However, that percentage is down from last year when the same question earned 66 percent of the vote as reported yesterday by Puck Daddy.
Visit PlayersPoll.ca for the complete list of this year’s results.