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Wednesday, September 5, 2012
Top rated players in 'NHL 13' revealed

By Jon Robinson

Ryan Miller of the Buffalo Sabres is the highest-rated goalie in "NHL 13," which drops Sept. 11.
How much is one ratings point worth in bragging rights?

If you’re identical twins and teammates, Daniel and Henrik Sedin, I’m sure that one point is worth its weight in PlayStations, especially since they’ve been on the ice together since they were eight years old.

Then again, when one brother is rated 91 overall and the other is rated 90 in EA Sports’ upcoming “NHL 13,” the smack talk between brothers shouldn’t be too bad.

Just imagine what it would be if Daniel was 95 and Henrik was 85?

But in a game that has grown more technical thanks to the advanced skating, every ratings point is now critical to success, as player traits like speed, acceleration, and agility are now translated into getting to the puck faster and skating away from defenders, so it’s vitally important to know your team’s strengths and weaknesses before you ever step skate on the virtual ice.

To help get you prepared for game time (NHL 13 hits stores September 11), we give you a closer look at the nine athletes who are rated 91 or higher in the game.

Sidney Crosby, Pittsburgh: 95 overall
Boasting 95 deking, 93 agility, 90 acceleration, 95 passing, 95 puck control, 90 slap shot power, and 90 slap shot accuracy, Crosby is a force in “NHL 13.” His only downside is his 75 durability, which could keep him off the ice for chunks of ice-time if you play as Pittsburgh throughout the season.

Pavel Datsyuk, Detroit: 95 overall
Datsyuk’s ratings line is highlighted by 95 offensive awareness, 95 deking, 95 puck control, and 94 passing. He’s a stick-handling genius in cyber skates and should change his name to Pasha Playmaker.

Alexander Ovechkin, Washington: 93 overall
Russian machine never breaks, but Ovechkin might make you break a few controller if you’re trying to defend against him. With 90 speed, 90 agility, 90 acceleration, 95 deking, 95 wrist shot accuracy, and 95 wrist shot power, he’s a goal just waiting to happen.

Ryan Miller, Buffalo: 92 overall
The highest-rated goalie in the game, Miller’s 91 speed and 91 vision help him get to just about any puck in the game. Throw in 90 glove high, 91 glove low, 90 stick high, and 92 stick low, and you can see why he’s such a brick wall in front of the net.

Henrik Lundqvist, New York Rangers: 91 overall
If you’re going to beat the best-dressed man in the NHL, aim high. Lundqvist’s ratings: 88 glove high, 91 glove low, 87 sstick high, 92 stick low.

Evgeni Malkin, Pittsburgh: 91 overall
Thanks to 90 slap shot accuracy, 91 slap shot power, 92 wrist shot accuracy and 90 wrist shot power, Malkin is the kind of player in “NHL 13” who can put up some big numbers for you. Feed him the one-timer and chances are, it’s going in the net.

Steven Stamkos, Tampa Bay: 91 overall
Stamkos is like a sniper with his stick skills, sporting 93 slap shot accuracy, 92 slap shot power, 94 wrist shot accuracy, and 90 wrist shot power. Add in his 90 speed and 93 deking, and you can see why the “NHL 12” cover star is such a beast in the game.

Zdeno Chara, Boston: 91 overall
Thanks to the game’s physics and momentum, you need a bruiser like Chara patrolling the ice in order to knock some of that speed out of your opponents. The big man’s 95 body checking, 90 fighting skill, and 95 strength are just the kind of skills I’m looking for when building a team. His 95 slap shot power doesn’t hurt, either.

Daniel Sedin, Vancouver: 91 overall
With 93 offensive awareness, 92 passing, 92 puck control, 93 wrist shot power, and 90 wrist shot accuracy, Sedin rates out one overall point higher than his brother, making siblings everywhere wish a video game would rate their families just so they can finally have proof who is superior.

The best of the rest:
• Duncan Keith, Chicago: 90 overall
• Jonathan Toews, Chicago: 90 overall
• Zach Parise, Minnesota: 90 overall
• Shea Webber, Nashville: 90 overall
• Claude Giroux, Philadelphia: 90 overall
• Ilya Kovalchuk, New Jersey: 90 overall
• Kris Letang, Pittsburgh: 90 overall
• Henrik Sedin, Vancouver: 90 overall
• Jonathan Quick, Los Angeles: 90 overall
• Carey Price, Montreal: 90 overall