Have you ever thought on what it would be like to create an ultimate team of current NHLers? A dream team, so to speak. A team consisting of thee best players in the world. If you think about it, it’s actually really hard to narrow it to down, especially narrowing it down to one center, one right wing, one left wing, two defensemen and a goaltender. It is a topic that could be talked about for hours while having drinks at the bars with your buddies. It’s a topic that could be discussed with the other Dads at your daughter’s dance practice and make that horrible two hours seem like fifteen minutes of fun. It’s a topic where there is never really a right answer but where your answer is always backed up by quality facts and opinions.
I wanted to take this challenge of coming up with and creating the dream lineup of current NHLers. Recently I have discussed “The Lineup” with some buddies from back home (Hockey knowledge extraordinaries ;)) and with my followers on Twitter and Facebook. I have listened to their opinions and talked to them about my own. In the process of all this hockey talk, I have managed to narrow it down to one starting lineup.
Here it is, Bicks’ Dream Team:
Right Wing- Patrick Kane
Only 26 years old and Patrick Kane already has won two Stanley Cups, he has won a playoff MVP trophy and is arguable having is best season as a pro so far. His 63 points leads the NHL and he is an offense threat every time he steps on the ice. He has now been in the NHL eight seasons and he has at least 20 goals and 30 assist in every year, including the 2012-13 season where he only played in 47 games(due to the NHL lockout). Give him the puck and he makes things happen. Called the “Major of Dangle City,” by John Buccigross, Kaners’ hands are something special. He is the most exciting player to watch in the NHL. His shootout moves are second to no one and he makes goalies be on SportsCenter for the wrong reason. When his career is finally over, he might be the best player to ever to be born in the United States. With Kane being so young, he has even more time to improve his resume.
Center- Sidney Crosby
Sidney Crosby has been in the league for nine seasons already and has scored 100+ points in 5 of those. He captured the Hart trophy (league MVP) when he was still a teenager. He has won a Stanley Cup and in the process was the youngest captain to lift the cup. He is a born leader and the best captain in the NHL. He is always saying the right things, whether it’s to his teammates, to his coaches, or to the media. His play on the ice speaks for itself. He has become the face of the Pittsburgh Penguins and always has them competing for the Stanley Cup, come playoff time. Also, he has won two gold medals and scored one of the biggest goals ever for team Canada in the 2010 Olympics. The guy is still getting done and is only age 27. He is having a great season and still has a long time lift in the league.
Left Wing- Alex Ovechkin
Alex Ovechkin is the BEST GOAL SCORER IN THE NHL there is no doubt about it! He sits in the exact same spot ever time on the power play every game and the goalie knows its coming and he still burries every time. He won the Calder trophy (rookie of the year) his rookie season (beating out Sidney Crosby). He has won the Hart trophy three times (2008, 2009, 2013) only 8 NHLers have ever won the Hart trophy three times. He has scored over 30 goals every season he has been the league. He has scorer 50 goals in 5 (soon to be 6) seasons of his career. Some say that he doesn’t play defense but in his career he is +58. He loves taking the body and being a physical forward. Most importantly he has fun playing the game, he celebrates harder than anybody in the league. All Ovi needs is a Stanley Cup and that could come later this season with the way he and Capitals are playing right now.
Drew Doughty is a two-way defensemen with blazing speed. He has already played in 76 playoff games and has record 50 career playoff points, on his way to winning two Stanley Cups. He was select to his first all-star game this season and is annual candidate for the Norris trophy (NHL’s top defensemen). He leads the NHL in time on ice (TOI) this season and is on the ice in any key situation of the LA Kings. He has a strong defensive game but his vision and ability to move the puck to the open man on the ice separates him from the other great defensemen in the league. A former 2nd overall draft pick, is now hitting the peak of his career and is taking NHL by storm. He still has the brunt of his career in front of him and will win many Norris trophies along the way.
Defenseman- Shea Weber
Standing tall at 6’4” 233lbs, Shea Weber is one the biggest threats on the ice, offensively and defensively. Serving as the captain for the Nashville Predators, Weber is 29 years old, has the hardest shot in the NHL, and can lay the lumber like the best of them. He has consistently put up points for the Preds from the blueline. This season he has 42 points (14 goals 28 assists) and Nashville is sitting at the top with the best record in the NHL. He is a two time gold medal winner with team Canada but is without a Stanley Cup. Weber will get his Norris trophy he deserves eventually but this season he might be hoisting Lord Stanley above his head first.
Goaltender- Pekka Rinne
Pekka Rinne has put the franchise of the Nashville Predators on the map. He is the reason why they are the best team in the NHL right now and he makes crazy highlight saves every night. He has catlike reflexes and great at moving side to side. He should be considered for the MVP this season because he means so much the Preds. He the top goalie in the NHL this season with 34 wins and 1.94 goals against average, he is for sure this years’ Vezina winner (NHL’s top goalie). He is getting up there in age but he is in the peak of his career right now, in my mind. He has 197 career wins, a .920% save percentage, 2.34 goals against average, and 35 shutouts in his 6-year career with the Predators.
Honorable Mention Lineup
Wing- Zach Parise
Wing- Rick Nash
Defenseman- P.K. Subban
Defenseman- Aaron Ekblad
Goaltender- Jonathan Quick/Henrik Lundqvist
Making this dream team lineup was one of the hardest things I have ever done in my entire life. There are so many interchangeable parts that this lineup could have had. Big shout out to the boys back home who babbled and compared lineups with me while making the dream team lineup, couldn’t have done it without you guys! Next time you’re hanging out with you buds, see you if you guys can come up with your dream team lineup, it’s a lot hard than it sounds. Hope you all enjoyed reading this week’s Bicks Blog!
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