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The Best Russian Hockey Player

from Rory Boylen of The Hockey News,

The best Russian in the NHL today, clearly, is Datsyuk.

Datsyuk beat out Joe Thornton on THN’s all-decade team at the center position – and Thornton had scored the most points of anyone in that 10-year span. It’s not always about points when you’re talking best player, not that Datsyuk lacks in that department. He has been remarkably consistent with seasons of 87, 87, 97 and 97 points in the first four post-lockout seasons. Yes, he did dip to 26th in scoring with 70 points last season (which still ain’t bad), but he led the league in takeaways by an astounding 49 en route to his third straight Selke Trophy. The only other player to win three Selkes in a row is Bob Gainey, who won the first four, and he never scored more than 45 points.

While the argument can certainly be made Datsyuk has better support players than his counterparts, it should be noted the Red Wings have been through a bit of a transitional period themselves. In the past six years, with stars aging and new players coming along, the Wings haven’t missed a step thanks largely to the consistency of players such as Datsyuk.

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Filed in: NHL Teams, Detroit Red Wings, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: pavel+datsyuk

Comments

Sullyosis's avatar

Already knew all this, but good the Hockey News is getting it out there that he isn’t just a puck-thief.

Posted by Sullyosis from A hateful lair in Post Apocalyptic US (or Arizona) on 12/21/10 at 08:33 PM ET

Nathan's avatar

Already knew all this, but good the Hockey News is getting it out there that he isn’t just a puck-thief.

Posted by Sullyosis from A hateful lair in Post Apocalyptic US (or Arizona) on 12/21/10 at 05:33 PM ET

Can’t be a “thief” of something when it rightfully belongs to you. smile

Posted by Nathan from the scoresheet! on 12/21/10 at 09:07 PM ET

WingsFaninCO's avatar

He doesn’t “steal” the puck…it comes to him willingly.  As he has said before “it always my friend.”

Posted by WingsFaninCO on 12/21/10 at 09:14 PM ET

Baroque's avatar

He only lets other players borrow his puck sometimes. But even Pavel’s generosity has limits.

Posted by Baroque from Michigan on 12/21/10 at 09:46 PM ET

Tony's avatar

I don’t have a problem with this article….

Posted by Tony from Virginia Beach, VA on 12/21/10 at 09:50 PM ET

WingsFanInBeanLand's avatar

It’s not always about points when you’re talking best player

That line right there says it all.

I’d build my team around Pavel before any player in the world.

Posted by WingsFanInBeanLand from where free agents no longer dare. on 12/21/10 at 10:57 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.

From breaking news to in-depth stories around the league, KK Hockey is updated with fresh stories all day long and will bring you the latest news as quickly as possible.

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