It continues to be that dull time of year, and while we patiently wait for hockey to begin, silly, objective lists dominate the (news) flow. The NHL Network turns into a tabloid, work distraction type outlet like Buzzfeed.
Let’s begin with NHL Network’s Top 20 Center list.
— NHL Network (@NHLNetwork) August 5, 2019
To state the obvious, William Karlsson continues to get stiffed. First he agrees to a team-first, team-friendly extended deal, and then he gets left off the NHL Network’s 2019 Top 20 Center list. It’s immediately confusing because Karlsson made the cut last year, coming in at #17. Ahead of centers like Logan Couture and Sebastian Aho, who are both on 2019’s list.
I don’t know why they do these things. I guess it causes controversy. It’s such a reputation thing. At the end of the day, it doesn’t really matter what the pundits think. It matters what the coaching staff thinks, what your teammates think, and where you fit in the salary cap, and what the fans think of you.-Gord Miller, TSN Montreal 690
Now don’t get me wrong, there are many elite centers in the NHL but Karlsson deserves to get a top 20 nod just as much as Couture, Aho, Sean Monahan, and Elias Peterson. Maybe the NHL Network got confused when Karlsson signed a second-line center’s contract.
Next up, the NHL Network’s Top 20 Wings list.
— NHL Network (@NHLNetwork) August 12, 2019
Again, Golden Knights fans have the right to gripe. Vegas’ top winger Mark Stone is considered to be one of the NHL’s premier defensive wing, but dropped all the way down to #13. It’s clear the NHL Network places a heavy emphasis on offense when they put together their winger list. However, when taking in account his entire game, the debate Stone should be ranked higher is valid.
I think when you’re rating players, you have to take in consideration how much money they make.-Miller
Coming off of his first 70+ point season, a Selke trophy runner-up, Stone should be in the Top 10. If he’s not next offseason, that’s a problem.
(Photo Credit: SinBin.vegas Photographer Brandon Andreasen)
It’s not just tainted hockey lists either.
Take a look (or at least try to) at this farcical Top 50 Greatest Rappers of All-Time list. I’m still dry heaving.
Let's argue pic.twitter.com/u80dkZ4Max
— The Brew Podcast (@TheBrewPodcast1) August 5, 2019
You can’t begin any list with Jay-Z, but more importantly, any all-time list should be full of legendary or at least recognizable performers. Putting it simply, Ken has to know the artists name. Listing a borderline nobody like Joe Budden at #3 is comparable to ranking Tomas Nosek the third best center in hockey. And that’s no slight towards Nosek. Budden would love to have the same success.
But just like the NHL Network’s list of top players, this Hip Hop list was an easy way to create some buzz. Good or bad, it’s good to get attention during the summer months.
Oh by the way, stay tuned for Ken’s Top 10 Places in Italy to Eat Sfogliatella.