February 26, 2024

Best NHL defensemen of 2024: Rankings by players and execs

The NHL is in a golden period for defensemen.

There are legacy stars who’ve Norris Trophy wins and proceed to be the backbones of their contending groups. There are ascendent younger players able to outshine these elders. And then there’s Cale Makar, who’s incomes comparisons to Bobby Orr from legends like Wayne Gretzky. He’s mainly his personal class at this level.

Even with that deep pool of expertise, the easiest D-men are clearly outlined, in response to one NHL govt.

“There’s no doubt in my mind about the top five. The order will change from one year to the next, but that’s the top five,” the exec mentioned.

Welcome to the primary outcomes from the 2024 NHL Positional Rankings, a singular strategy to decide the perfect of the perfect. Some surveys ask players for his or her rankings. Others ballot executives. The NHL Positional Rankings mix each opinions into one definitive set that blends on-ice savvy with boardroom considering.

Here’s the way it labored: Surveys had been carried out over the previous month. Respondents had been requested to rank their present high 10 players at heart, winger, defenseman and goaltender based mostly on a predetermined listing of the highest 30-40 players at every place. Players ranked on every poll got a numerical rating — No. 1 earned 10 factors, No. 2 acquired 9 factors and so on.

Ten NHL players had been surveyed — 4 from the Eastern Conference, six from the Western Conference. They vary from NHL award nominees to veteran position players. To steadiness that perspective, we surveyed 10 folks from the hockey operations departments of NHL groups — six from the East, 4 from the West — together with two coaches and three basic managers.

Combined, their insights led to rankings that go behind fan conjecture and media narratives to disclose the perfect of the perfect in response to these contained in the NHL.

Stats are collected from websites comparable to Natural Stat Trick, Hockey Reference and Evolving Hockey.