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Calgary Flames v Toronto Maple Leafs
Connor who?
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‘And It’s Not Even Close’

I like to scan hockey boards and social media to see what people are saying. Strange hobby for sure. The AINEC thing seems to be a really popular one lately.

Eg. Austin Matthews is better than Connor McDavid AINEC

Nathan Mackinnon is better than Drai AINEC

Panarin is better than Drai AINEC

Mackinnon is better than McDavid AINEC

Bear is better than Nurse AINEC

Jones is better than Nurse AINEC

Usually these awesome articles/posts also quote some stat that is also undeniable! Eg. Drai wins scoring race but he totally sucks because some player had more 5 vs 5 points than him. That same player also had 30 less points then him but that 5 vs 5 is the killer! Then you’ll have someone like Nurse do really well at 5 vs 5 points wise (top 20) and it’ll be pointed out they suck because they are being carried at even strength by one of those powerplay specialists. Or player A has 20 goals but he is garbage because player B has 2 goals but a much higher xGF%.

Back to who is better. McDavid, Drai, MacKinon, Matthews, Panarin or Crosby.

The answer is that it is, in fact, extremely close. We are in a current NHL where there are about 10 guys that are all extremely good at what they do (Kane, Eichel and Pastrnak come to mind). They all look different, play different and play for different teams BUT they are all just outstanding at what they do. We are also in an era where about 8 teams could win the Cup and it wouldn’t be the least bit shocking (no, I don’t think we are one of them but a trade or 2 might convince me otherwise).

In the 8 hour first intermission for the Lake Tahoe game on Saturday, Keith Jones explained that, to him, Mackinnon is the first guy he’d want.

While my first reaction is that Cassie is crazy for thinking this. I’m assuming about a million people (from Guelph to Bowmanville) agree with her.

I will say if you offered me a straight up trade today of Matthews for McDavid I am passing without much consideration at all. Now Drai for Matthews? I might look up some cap info and stats before saying ‘no’. I would take Mackinnon for Drai straight up because of cap reasons (Mackinnon makes 2 million less give or take).

Lastly, most the arguments about best player is always compared to McDavid. Might be a reason he is always the guy everyone's favorite player is better than.