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The All-Decade Team For The Detroit Red Wings

from Greg Wyshynski of ESPN,

Your friends at ESPN have put together All-Decade Teams for all 31 franchises. The criteria was simple: Which players had that combination of statistical achievement and historic importance? Which players defined the journey for teams from the 2009-10 season to the present?

C: Henrik Zetterberg (154 G, 401 A, 0.85 PPG)
LW: Justin Abdelkader (106 G, 143 A, 0.36 PPG)
RW: Johan Franzen (104 G, 123 A, 0.73 PPG)
D: Nicklas Lidstrom (36 G, 109 A, 0.62 PPG)
D: Niklas Kronwall (67 G, 243 A, 0.45 PPG)
G: Jimmy Howard (243-168-68, .914 SV%, 2.54 GAA)

Coach: Mike Babcock (245-170-67)

The past decade has consisted of two starkly different eras for the Red Wings. It began after a Stanley Cup Final loss to Pittsburgh in 2009, in the midst of a playoff streak that would last 25 seasons. Gaze upon the talent on that roster: Lidstrom, Pavel Datsyuk, Zetterberg, Marian Hossa, Franzen, Brian Rafalski, Tomas Holmstrom, Chris Osgood and so on. That was 10 years ago. It might as well feel like 90, with how the team has fared since.

As for the team selected above -- look, Justin Abdelkader isn't everyone's bucket of octopi. You could easily make the case for Tomas Tatar here considering he had better numbers and is a better player. But outside of Kronwall's 693 games, no one played more than Abdelkader's 686 for the Red Wings in the decade. If you're looking to define the past decade for the Red Wings, Justin Abdelkader is part of that definition (for better or worse).

the 30 other teams...

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Comments

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C: Datsyuk
LW: Zetterberg
RW: Franzen
D: Lidstrom
D: Kronwall
G: Howard

Not that hard Wysh. Zetterberg played as much LW as C over the last decade, or possibly more. And even if we’re being super pedantic about exact forward positions, any all-decade list that includes Abdelkader and not Datsyuk deserves to be terminated with extreme prejudice.

Posted by Sven22 from Grand Rapids on 08/19/19 at 08:15 AM ET

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Agreed. Leaving Datsyuk off such a list should be forbidden. Considering he an Zetterberg spent plenty of time playing together it isn’t a big stretch to put Z on a wing.

Although I have to admit, having Abby on such a list says a lot about the Wings of the last decade. Perhaps by that rule we should find a way to insert Ericsson. Ugh!

Posted by evileye on 08/19/19 at 10:49 AM ET

MurrayChadwick's avatar

I agree, how in the hell do you leave Pavel off this list?

Posted by MurrayChadwick from YzerGod's pixie dust fueled bandwagon on 08/19/19 at 11:36 AM ET

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Posted by evileye on 08/19/19 at 10:49 AM ET

Yeah, I actually considered making that same observation but didn’t want my post getting too bogged down.

If you’re going to pick Abdelkader over Datsyuk because he “defined the journey” better (their criteria and analysis, not mine), I think you really have to go the whole distance with your ridiculous, insane premise and pick Ericsson over Lidstrom.

I mean, Ericsson isn’t any worse at being a defenseman than Abdelkader is at being a forward. Both are below average players at best who had to take on more and more responsibility even as their skills diminished. Both are emblematic of the team’s long slide from contender to doormat. Both played here every season of the decade. And Lidstrom was only here for the first three years of the decade against Datsyuk’s seven!

Posted by Sven22 from Grand Rapids on 08/19/19 at 11:37 AM ET

SYF's avatar

Well, that’s the airheads at ESPN for you.

Posted by SYF from impossible and oddly communally possessive sluts on 08/19/19 at 01:50 PM ET

TreKronor's avatar

Couldn’t put Datsyuk on the list because his numbers were inflated due to playing with Zetterberg.  That’s why Abdelkader isn’t on the…WAIT JUST A DARN SECOND!!!

Posted by TreKronor on 08/19/19 at 02:32 PM ET

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looks like they are trying to justify Abbey on the list….

Posted by howeandhowe from Seattle on 08/19/19 at 03:50 PM ET

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Had a couple years of points production that were inflated based on the play of two aging elite players, appearing to be better than we thought he was, then dropped and dropped down to exactly where we all know he belongs, the bottom of the heap.

How is that not emblematic of the last decade for the Wings?

Posted by CharDeeMacDennis on 08/19/19 at 07:04 PM ET

bigfrog's avatar

Pasha belongs on the list. smile

Posted by bigfrog on 08/19/19 at 10:53 PM ET

RWBill's avatar

ROFL @Wysh -
Lidstrom retired in 2012 but is on the decade team. Datsyuk retired four years later but is excluded.

Abdelkader does represent the squandering of assets into long term contracts that Ken Holland wrote too many of, but ironically has been a non-factor since Datsyuk left.

Posted by RWBill on 08/20/19 at 04:59 PM ET

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Welcome to Abel to Yzerman, a Red Wing blog since 1977.  No other site on the internet has better-researched, fact-laden and better prepared discussions than A2Y.  Re-phrase: we do little research, find facts and stats highly overrated and claim little to no preparation.  There are 19 readers of A2Y. No more, no less. All of them, except maybe one, are juvenile in nature.  Reminding them of that in the comment section will only encourage them to prove that. Your suggestions and critiques are welcome: wphoulihan@gmail.com