(Source: EA Sports)
When it comes to selfless players, one of the first places to look is to the grinder forwards. They lay their bodies on the line whenever they’re on the ice to wear opponents, win the puck, and protect the goal. In NHL 19, a game that revolves around speed and skill, a bottom six grinder can be exactly the right weapon to quell the play of the opposition’s star players.
Ranked by their overall rating, these are the best grinders on NHL 19. .
Tom Wilson (82 OVR)
Team: Washington Capitals
Position: Right Wing
Best Stats: Aggressiveness 92, Strength 90, Body Checking 90, Balance 90
Tom Wilson is one of the NHL’s premier powerhouses. On a team that’s all about scoring goals, Wilson doesn’t stand out as a star player, but he certainly serves his purpose. In fact, now and then, he finds himself on the scoresheet as well. As you can see by his stats, Wilson is a brute, with 85 in fighting, 90 in strength, and 92 in aggressiveness, but he can also play the sport, boasting an 85-plus rating for much of the shooting and puck skills attributes.
Dustin Brown (81 OVR)
Team: Los Angeles Kings
Position: Right Wing
Best Stats: Body Checking 91, Slap Shot Power 88, Aggressiveness 88, Strength 88, Balance 88
Former captain of the Los Angeles Kings, few players work as hard as Dustin Brown on the NHL ice. The right wing gets everywhere, laying out checks and picking up pucks. He’s a workhorse and a team player, as shown by his 85 fighting skill, 85 durability, 85 endurance, and 85 passing.
Micheal Ferland (81 OVR)
Team: Carolina Hurricanes
Position: Left Wing
Best Stats: Aggressiveness 90, Body Checking 90, Stick Checking 88, Strength 88, Balance 88
Micheal Ferland’s fast, aggressive, and good technically, making him a solid option at even-strength and when short-handed. He boasts 84s in offensive awareness and defensive awareness as well as 87s in wrist shot power and slap shot power. But, it’s his high physical stats coupled with 85s in acceleration and speed which make Ferland such a strong grinder.
Zack Smith (80 OVR)
Team: Ottawa Senators
Best Stats: Aggressiveness 90, Balance 89, Strength 89, Stick Checking 88, Body Checking 88
It’s always good to have a grinder at center as their aggressive checking and puck hunting isn’t isolated to one flank. Zack Smith works his socks off in the offensive zone and defensive zone to tire the opposition and create chances. His 77 for faceoffs is a little short of what you’d want in the bottom six, but his 88 stick checking and 88 body checking more than makeup for his lack of rating in the duel.
Jujhar Khaira (79 OVR)
Team: Edmonton Oilers
Best Stats: Slap Shot Power 89, Strength 89, Balance 89, Wrist Shot Power 88, Aggressiveness 88, Body Checking 88
Fun fact: Jujhar Khaira is the third player of Punjabi descent to make it to the NHL, following in the skate trails of Manny Malhotra and Robin Bawa. With 69 games, 21 points, 128 hits, and 26 takeaways last season, Khaira looks to have secured his place in the Edmonton lines. In NHL 19, he’s just as physical as he is in real life, boasting near 90s in aggression, body checking, and strength as well as a heavy 89 in slap shot power and 88 in wrist shot power.
Other NHL 19 top grinder forwards
Aggressiveness 89, Body Checking 88, Strength 88
Strength 90, Balance 90, Body Checking 89,
New York Islanders
Aggressiveness 90, Body Checking 90, Strength 87
Aggressiveness 90, Body Checking 87, Agility 87
Aggressiveness 94, Body Checking 90, Slap Shot Power 87
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