Ranking the Top Penalty-Killers Among NHL Defensemen Today

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Ranking the Top Penalty-Killers Among NHL Defensemen Today
Christian Petersen/Getty Images

Who are the league's top defensemen when playing shorthanded? As great as Shea Weber and Ryan Suter are, don't look for them on this list, because we've identified 10 blueliners who are even better at killing penalties.

Defensive talent is admittedly quite hard to quantify with analytics. Looking at the data over the past three seasons (2010-11 through 2012-13), we're looking for players who were assigned the lion's share of the team's penalty-killing duties and yet kept the number of scoring opportunities to a minimum.

The metric of choice here is the number of attempted shots allowed per two minutes. Suter and Weber, for example, have allowed 2.72 and 2.83 attempted shots per two minutes, respectively (minus their team's own shorthanded shot attempts).

Any player who can match or exceed that level, while still taking on the top power-play units, deserve strong consideration for inclusion in this list. All but one succeeded in doing that, including the leader, who allowed just a miserly 2.14 shot attempts per two minutes.


All advanced statistics are via writer's own original research unless otherwise noted. 


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