Sportsnet

Rogers Media

Phaneuf voted NHL’s most overrated player

Dion Phaneuf is the most overrated player in the National Hockey League. At least that’s according to a recent Sports Illustrated player poll.

Based on 161 NHL players who responded to SI’s survey, the Toronto Maple Leafs captain was named most overrated for the second consecutive year.

Despite being a fan favourite in Toronto and currently ranking sixth among NHL defenceman in points with 28 in 42 games, the 26-year-old received 20 per cent of the vote.

Washington Capitals forward Alex Ovechkin came in second place with eight per cent of the vote. The Russian superstar has 17 goals and 33 points in 40 games this season, which is below is standards.

Rounding out the top ten were Montreal Canadiens forward Scott Gomez, and Vancouver Canucks goalie Roberto Luongo, Minnesota Wild winger Dany Heatley, New Jersey Devils forward Ilya Kovalchuk, Tampa Bay Lightning captain Vincent Lecavalier, Calgary Flames defenceman Jay Bouwmeester, Canucks forward Ryan Kesler and Leafs defenceman Mike Komisarek.

Toronto’s general manager Brian Burke said he is disappointed that a group of players would participate in a poll like this that judges their peers.

“What player votes in a poll like this?” Burke told PTS on Sportsnet 590 The Fan Wednesday. “Throw it in the trash. Why would you vote in a poll like this?”

Burke then defended his captain: “How is he overrated? This guy is an awesome hockey player … He has turned into a marvelous leader,” said Burke. “If Dion Phaneuf was still in Calgary and this poll came out I would say the same thing.”

Burke also added that any player that cares to discuss this with Dion can fly to Ottawa and talk to him there, where he will be a starter in the 2012 NHL All-star Game.

POLL:

Of the top five vote getters, who do you think is the most overrated?

    $(“#poll_8974”).v2Poll({poll_id: 8974});