NHL on TSN Quiz: Who's your choice for league MVP?

TSN.ca Staff
3/18/2009 10:46:06 PM
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Every week, the NHL on TSN panel voices its opinions on the hot topics of the day in the Wednesday Night Hockey Quiz.

TSN.ca offers you the opportunity to chime in on the big issues with the Insiders. Read the questions and answers from TSN's hockey experts and give us your thoughts in the Your Call feature.

Question No. 1: Who has been the better trade deadline acquisition: Olli Jokinen or Chris Kunitz?

Bob McKenzie: I'll go with Chris Kunitz.  The numbers do not lie - the Pittsburgh Penguins have been 8-0-2 since Kunitz came on the scene. I realize they have a new coach in Dan Bylsma and I realize Bill Guerin is a factor and Sergei Gonchar's good health and all of those things, but it's hard to argue with the six goals, the 12 points and the winning record.

Pierre McGuire: Chris Kunitz of the Pittsburgh Penguins - ten games played, six goals, six assists, twelve points.  He's ripping it up, he's made Sidney Crosby better, he's made Jordan Staal better, he's made Evgeni Malkin better, he's made the powerplay better. Chris Kunitz.

Keith Jones: Chris Kunitz for me as well. Bob and Pierre pretty much covered everything, but he's a great complementary player to go along with the Sidney Crosby line, and a big reason as well: he's won a Stanley Cup.

Question No. 2: Draft lottery talk is everywhere - the Globe and Mail suggesting that all teams who don't make the playoffs should be eligible for the number one pick.  A Denver Post writer suggested Colorado should tank right away in order to get John Tavares.  Does the NHL need to change the draft lottery format just to protect the integrity of competition?  Keep it the same or change it?

Keith Jones: Keep it the same.  There's enough chance involved already with the lottery system the way that it is.  There's no guarantee that you're going to get that first overall pick. The 30th place Philadelphia Flyers came in 2007 - Patrick Kane went to the Chicago Blackhawks.  The Flyers lost the lottery.  There's still enough chance involved in the system - do not change a thing.

Pierre McGuire:  Keep it the same.  Why would you want to change?  If you saw the Toronto and Tampa Bay game on Tuesday night, you saw two teams that were going full-bore - there was nobody tanking it there.  And there were 20,000 people in Tampa Bay that loved that spectacle.  The fans still pay the freight - keep it the same.

Bob McKenzie: I say change it. You've got to reflect the post-lockout NHL.  Teams in the post-lockout NHL don't stay as bad for as long. Jonesy touched on it - the Philadelphia Flyers finished 30th overall, and  the next year they were in the playoffs. And the Sidney Crosby lottery - when all 30 teams were in it - was interesting.  Make all 14 non-playoff teams there - it's not about tanking, it's not about integrity - it's more reflecting the fact that teams in the new NHL don't stay at the bottom for as long and you don't stay at the top for as long either.

Question No. 3: Penguins fans are saying that Geno Malkin is the league MVP.  Good evidence in the last game - he got five points, he hit the 100-point mark, he leads it by 10.  Who's your choice?  It's basically coming down to Alex Ovechkin or Malkin. 

Pierre McGuire: Ovechkin. The big thing on Ovechkin is that he's probably scored the best goal of this NHL season against the Montreal Canadiens. He does this virtually every single night. If he's not part of the Washington Capitals, they're probably not leading the Southeast division, they're not pushing for home ice in the playoffs. He's the most valuable player.  Take him off the Capitals, they're not anywhere near as good.

Keith Jones: For me, it's Malkin. You think of Mike Green with the Capitals, you think of Sergei Gonchar with the Penguins. Gonchar playing now just 15 games, Malkin over the 100-point mark again.  Without a great defenceman on the blueline for much of the season, Malkin has gotten the job done. He's done a terrific job and deserves to win.

Bob McKenzie: Right this second, it's Alexander Ovechkin. 49 goals is impossible to overlook - the goals are worth more than the points in my view. Having said that, Ovechkin's got to keep it going down the stretch here the last 10 games because Malkin's coming on and so are the Penguins. This thing's not over yet.

Give us your thoughts in the Your Call feature.

Malkin and Ovechkin (Photo: Gregory Shamus/NHLI via Getty Images, Rick Stewart)


(Photo: Gregory Shamus/NHLI via Getty Images, Rick Stewart)
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