Who Will Replace Derek On 'Grey's Anatomy'? Someone Has To Be Top Doc At Grey Sloan Memorial

Derek Shepherd was the top dog at Seattle Grace (now Grey Sloan Memorial Hospital) since the moment he stepped in the door, nay, from the moment Meredith lifted a pillow off of his cute butt in the pilot. Sure, there was a little tension with Doctor Burke in the beginning, but Burke relinquished the top position and ran off to Switzerland, leaving Derek as the beacon of the hospital. Now that McDreamy has died, who will replace Derek as Grey's Anatomy's top doc?

I know that Owen Hunt is technically the Chief of Surgery of the hospital, but he really lacks the gravitas and charisma that Derek had. I’m not even really talking about Derek as the boss — I am talking about Derek as Derek. He was the Chief for a bit (he resigned in Season 7 after he was shot), but even when he wasn’t, people looked up to him. They valued his talent, his patience, and his thick, luscious hair (or was that just me?). There is a colossal hole in Derek’s wake, and the person who steps up his or her game in order to become the hospital’s most popular doc will have very big shoes to fill.

But who will it be? I’ve picked out a few of the Grey Sloan staff and rated them on a scale of one to five, with a five making that doctor most likely to fill Derek’s place as hospital superlative doctor.

Dr. Owen Hunt: 1/5

Owen will never be the top dog at the hospital. Why? I mean this in the nicest way possible, but no one really likes him. The only people who really get along with Owen are the people that he’s dating. Also, he’s technically the top brass of the hospital, and no one likes an authority figure (unless he’s Derek Shepherd). Sorry, Owen — you’re out.

Dr. Amelia Shepherd: 2/5

It would be a great story to have Amelia rise through the ranks and be embraced by everyone at the hospital after her brother’s death and all that jazz, but the truth is, it’s too easy. I also think Amelia is going through too much to ascend to top doc right now. A lot has happened to her in her life, and she’s just lost her brother. She’s going to be a little busy mourning for a while, and that’s OK.

Dr. Callie Torres: 2/5

Do we all remember that Callie was like, a really bad Chief of Surgery? All she wanted to do is cut, and, well, a Chief doesn’t do a lot of cutting. That nixes her for her leadership skills. She’s a great doctor, but I think Callie is at her best when she’s busting bones and taking names. She’s not going to get to Derek-levels of popularity.

Dr. Meredith Grey: 3/5

This would also be way, way too easy and way, way too uplifting if Meredith were to take Derek’s place. While I think that she’ll ultimately become a better doctor (more like her mother) in the wake of her husband’s death, Meredith rising to the occasion as a plot device is so not Shonda Rhimes.

Dr. Arizona Robbins: 4/5

Callie’s ex-wife, Arizona, is a better fit for taking Derek’s position than Callie is. She’s a brilliant doctor who just finished a major neonatal surgical program, plus she’s warm and bubbly, so everybody likes her. Arizona is a sleeper pick for Sloan Grey’s newest top doctor.

Dr. Miranda Bailey: 5/5

Do they still call Bailey “The Nazi”? I don’t think so, but in any case, she’s long outlived that nickname. Bailey is the smartest, most personable, and toughest doctor in the hospital behind Derek, and she should take his place as Grey Sloan figurehead and “nicest-to-know” surgeon in the hospital. Bailey is the best. I mean, even Derek’s son is named after her.

Will my predictions hold up? We’ll find out soon, as this week’s episode lets us in to everyone’s reactions to Derek's loss and where they'll go from here.

Images: Mitchell Haaseth (2), Richard Cartwright (2), Adam Taylor, Kelsey McNeal, Danny Feld/ABC