So why do I think the Red Wings spell disaster for the Chicago Blackhawks (the Western Conference’s projected number 1 seed)?
The Detroit Red Wings are an incredibly storied franchise not only in the NHL but in all of sports. This season’s Red Wing team is equally as dangerous as in years past. This team is simply flawless. They are much younger than they have been in the past, being right in the middle of the league’s average roster age.
For those that are interested, the link for NHL ages is right here. Really just had to google it.
And for those interested, the NHL’s oldest roster is my New Jersey Devils. That might have something to do with the fact that our goalies are Martin Broduer (40) and Johan Hedberg (39).
Back to the Wings, though. Detroit has a few stars on their roster that while a little older, have superb conditioning. They are the most fundamentally sound team I’ve probably ever watched.
Let’s take roll call. We have the captain, Henrik Zetterberg, who has 8 goals but 27 assists. So whose scoring the goals?
Pavel Datsyuk has netted 13 goals, and leads the Wings in that category. That doesn’t sound like much, but they average 2.49 goals a game, which also doesn’t sound particularly strong.
So why am I counting them as the problem team for the Hawks?
I already said it. They are supremely well-conditioned. Their discipline reminds me of the old Soviet Union hockey team, and that team lost based on a “miracle”.
Next name is Niklas Kronwall, who while also doesn’t load the net with goals (he only has 5), has 21 assists. That’s amazing.
This begs the question, whose scoring this team’s goals?
The answer is EVERYONE. The team couldn’t be any more balanced. Right now, they sit at the 9th seed, but I expect them to just make it. They have 4 games remaining, and are only 3 points behind the Blue Jackets, who only have two games left. If the Jackets win both their games, then the Wings have a tough time getting in. However, the Wild have only 3 games left, and have the same points as the Blue Jackets.
I think we are in for an interesting final week.