EA NHL 15 Player Ratings Revealed: Top 5 Ranked Defensemen According To EA Sports, Who Made The Cut?
As the NHL 15 launch slowly creeps closer, more details are consistently revealed by the developers. We've seen videos detailing new gameplay improvements or features, and EA Sports has now started releasing player ratings.
EA Sports began with the goalie ratings earlier this week, and will continue to list the top five players in each position as well as list the top 50 overall. The developers have now announced the best-rated defensemen in NHL 15, and included descriptions justifying and explaining each ranking. They are as follows:
1. Shea Weber, Nashville Predators: 93 Overall
The big, powerful defenseman is effective all over the ice, with physical, shut-down defense and a roaring shot (23 goals, a figure many forwards would be happy with). The developers say, "Weber comes in as our top rated NHL defenseman as he is an absolute force in all three zones. Shea has 5 star Shooting, Defense, and Physical skills--and over (90) rated stats in all 6 attribute categories."
2. Duncan Keith, Chicago Blackhawks: 92 Overall
The top two players don't share a rating like we saw with the goalies, but Keith is an extremely good D-man nonetheless. He's fantastic going up ice, racking up a whopping 55 assists last season, and defends well in his own zone. Here's EA: "Last year's Norris Trophy winner lacks that huge physical element to his game, but makes up for it with 5 star Puck Skills, Senses, Skating and Defense attributes."
3. Ryan Suter, Minnesota Wild: 92 Overall
Weber's former partner in Nashville, which was undoubtedly the most intimidating defensive pairing in the league, moved on to a big money signing in Minnesota two seasons ago. The American is still a force on his own though, as the developers described, "Minnesota's minute muncher is excellent across all 6 attributes categories. His (93) Def. Awareness and (91) Shot Blocking and Stick Checking making him one of the league's best at protecting his own zone."
4. Drew Doughty, Los Angeles Kings: 91 Overall
Though perhaps not as defensively dominant as the top 3, Doughty is unbelievably good on the puck and a huge factor in both of the Kings' Stanley Cup winning campaigns. At just 24 years old, there's plenty ahead for Doughty: "Summary: The two time Olympic gold and Stanley Cup champion comes in as our number four defenseman. Doughty possess elite offensive attributes with (90) Speed, Agility, Acceleration and (93) Puck Control. High potential also leaves room for Drew to get better even better."
5. Zdeno Cahra, Boston Bruins: 91 Overall
Probably the consensus number one NHL defenseman a few years ago before the rise of Weber and Suter, the giant Chara is still frighteningly effective and strong. He doesn't have the offensive game those two and Doughty do, arguably dropping his ranking, but there's just about nobody more difficult to beat. EA says, "The 6'9 Chara is an intimidating force every time he steps on the ice. With 5 star Defense and Physicality - he isn't the type of player you want to battle with in the corner with. His (95) Shot Power also makes him one of the leagues deadliest shooters from the point.
That's it for the official top five defensemen in NHL 15--is there anyone you thought they left out? Though you could maybe shuffle the order around, it's hard to argue that any of them don't deserve to be in the top five. Subban and McDongh get honorable mentions for me, and Karlsson's offensive numbers are insane, but I don't think there argument is strong enough to displace any of the players listed.