NHL's 25 best under age 25: No Tavares?

January, 11, 2012
1/11/12
4:12
PM ET
One of ESPN Insider's advanced stats specialists, Neil Greenberg, took a crack at compiling the league's 25 best players under the age of 25 (Insider). While the most controversial ranking is the selection of Chicago Blackhawks captain Jonathan Toews ahead of Sidney Crosby -- for which Greenberg sites Crosby's uncertain health -- the omission of one John Tavares has earned the ire of the Isles faithful.

Ahead of the JT? Caps goalie Michal Neuvirth, Predators forward Sergei Kostitsyn and Jets center Bryan Little.

To be fair to Greenberg -- who has written some interesting pieces in the past -- his list weights players with a string of steady production in the past, not their potential ceiling as prospects. In essence, it's looking at what players have done instead of what they could do. Apparently the author prefers a bird in hand. That said, he explains that Tavares' puck possession stats, in terms of Corsi -- an advanced metric that measures the difference in shots generated for and against a players' team when he's on the ice -- are poor compared to the other players on the list, which is why Tavares misses the cut, despite having 160 points in 201 games.

Take a look at the full list ... and you'll probably want to swing by the comments section as well. If there's any consolation, the list doesn't include any Rangers or Devils either.

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