Ranking the NHL’s Top 10 Workhorse Defensemen

February 23rd, 2016 by Steve Macfarlane Leave a reply »
What makes a workhorse NHL defenseman? It's not just about overall minutes, otherwise the ranking you're about to read would be a copy-and-paste version of the league's leaders in that category. No, it's about hard and meaningful minutes.

The top 10 workhorse defensemen share some common traits. They contribute offensively but aren't exclusively relied upon for their scoring prowess. They play in all situations—even strength, shorthanded, power play—and are most often matched against the best forwards the other teams have to offer.

They are among their teams' most valuable players. They're difference-makers and anchors of their respective franchises.

These rankings are based on their minutes played—you won't find one who averages fewer than 24 a game—with a special emphasis on those who are on the wrong end of five-on-four action as penalty-killers. They all get their time on the power play as well. Those minutes may not be as difficult to play, but they have value.

They're the best of the best of the workhorse defensemen this season. Click ahead to see how the top 10 rank.

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