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A Tired Pair Of Captains

from Steve Simmons of the Toronto Sun,

Tonight is the 110th hockey game of Mike Richards’ season and the tank appears to be running on empty.

He won’t come out and say that he’s running out of gas and his coach, Peter Laviolette, won’t hear of it, but others around the Philadelphia Flyers are whispering that if they want to win the Stanley Cup, they may well have to do without much contribution from their captain and first-line centre.

And he isn’t alone.

Tonight is Jonathan Toews 103rd hockey game. Through the first three rounds of the Stanley Cup playoffs, he was the most dominant player on any team. He still leads the playoffs in scoring, but it’s not because of anything he has done through three games of the final.

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, Chicago Blackhawks, Philadelphia Flyers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: jonathan+toews, mike+richards

Comments

awould's avatar

This year and the past 2 years, it was seen as evidence of the Red Wings’ age that they could be considered tired. It was said over and over that, “yeah, a lot of hockey was played but at this time of year, you find that extra gear and the Red Wings age is a factor.”

Now when the Penguins are ousted in the 2nd round, Crosby and Co. are given a free pass because of all the hockey they played. It’s understandable that all the young guys on the Penguins would be gassed but with Detroit it’s because their old.

Now, I see Richards and Toews are tired because they’ve played 110 and 103 games this season. Richards and Toews are what, barely in their 20s?

What gives? With the Red Wings, it’s age but with anyone else it’s expected?

Posted by awould on 06/04/10 at 01:58 PM ET

Osrt's avatar

^Point.

Richards and Toews have been dominant so they’re being targeted even more this round. They may not be putting up numbers but they’re pouring their heart out.

Posted by Osrt on 06/04/10 at 02:05 PM ET

Avatar

Posted by awould on 06/04/10 at 11:58 AM ET

+1

Posted by Garth on 06/04/10 at 02:37 PM ET

Avatar

Interesting and candid article.  Although, with some players, particularly when you are the star of your team, this lack of success would be used as evidence that they’re not “big-game” types.  Witness the comments made about Sidney Crosby after last year’s final, when he was quite underwhelming, at least in terms of point totals (1 G, 2 A) I believe.  You still have people seizing on that as proof that, in the very biggest games, he has come up small and is thus overrated.

Why with Toews and Richards is the first assumption that the poor dears are exhausted?  And players jump on the excuse bandwagon, as well, on their behalf. 

Don’t get me wrong, I’m sure they’re dead tired, and have every reason to be.  Neither has gone this far before in the playoffs.  And Simmons does mention Toews consistently has to deal with Pronger.  In fact, last year, some informed people even pointed out that Crosby consistently faced not just Zetterberg, but also Lidstrom/Rafalski and that you couldn’t discount that.

Posted by Lex Talionis on 06/04/10 at 02:39 PM ET

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Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.

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