Nina G: If Crosby plays most of the season I would say Crosby. If he misses a large portion I’ll go with Zach Parise.
Bob H: Sidney Crosby, F, Pittsburgh (in absentia) or Chris Pronger, D, Philadelphia.
Kim Q: Rangers goaltender Henrik Lundqvist.
Nick D: Since there are so many of them, it’s a tough question to answer as to who will be the best player in the Atlantic Division. Even if you divided this question up into three parts as to the best forward, defenseman and goalie or five parts by adding all three forward positions, this would still be the toughest question to answer for the Atlantic.
Even if he only plays half a year, Sidney Crosby will still be the best player, night in and night out, in the NHL and by default that will make him the best player in the Atlantic. But if we go with body of work and who is expected to play from game one of the regular season I would select the following candidates:
Center: Claude Giroux
Left Wing: Ilya Kovalchuk
Right Wing: Jaromir Jagr
Defenseman: Chris Pronger
Goaltender: Ilya Bryzgalov
And the reasons why I select those three is because they absolutely have to be the best players at that position for their respective teams to have success.
Eden N: Can I vote for my fave? Claude Giroux seems to keep getting better and better. I’d love to see him kill the competition. But Brad Richards has joined the Rangers and maybe it’ll be good for him in the east.
Marcello D: The easy answer is Crosby but I am going to go off the board a little bit and say it will either be Zach Parise, Marian Gaborik, or Evgeni Malkin.
Parise has a lot at stake here. Never underestimate a man playing for a big payday. Gaborik could be helped greatly by the addition of Brad Richards. Although the preseason is a small sample size, Malkin looks like he has the drive to come back and dominate the league this season.