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Players: Lidstrom best shut-down defenseman

Whether he helps his team win tonight’s Game 7 against Phoenix or not is still yet to be decided, but when Sports Illustrated asked the NHL players who they thought was the top “shut down” defenseman in the league was, Nicklas Lidstrom was their top choice.

By carrying 25% of the vote amongst 272 players polled, Lidstrom was named the top choice of the league’s players. Boston’s Zdeno Chara was right behind him with 23% of the vote. Nashville’s Shea Weber was third with 10%, Philly’s Chris Pronger was fourth with 9% and Scott Niedermayer was fifth with 7% of the vote.

If you’re curious about how everyone’s favorite defenseman to either yell for or about did, Mike Green received just one vote. A poll like this will likely do little to subside the heat coming from the Red Wings fanatics on the Internet who went ape over Lidstrom not being named as a Norris trophy finalist this year, but they can at least hang their hat on this.