Monday, February 18, 2008

Lidstrom goes down

The announcement was just made in the press box at the Pepsi Center that Nicklas Lidstrom suffered a knee injury and will not return to the game. Lidstrom was nailed into the boards by Ian Laperriere 6:10 into tonight's game.
Bruce MacLeod reports that the injury's not thought to be all that serious, but this did make me wonder: Who would win the Norris Trophy if, in fact, Lidstrom missed the rest of the season?

The 37-year-old Red Wings captain has been the favourite for the award from Day 1, leading NHL blueliners in all the major offensive and defensive categories, but it'd be a stretch to think he could still be named the league's top defenceman while missing the final 20 games.

Chris Pronger, Zdeno Chara and Andrei Markov are probably the next in line, but I'd be curious to hear what others think.

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At 11:17 p.m., February 18, 2008, Blogger FAUX RUMORS said...

1) In our opinion IF Lidstrom were to miss the remaining games of the season, the Norris Trophy should go to.... Nicklas Lidstrom!
2) He's had a(another) head and shoulders better than everyone else type season that even missing a chunk of games would still garner enough to win another Norris!
3) It would probably prevent a Hart finalist nomination though

At 2:50 a.m., February 19, 2008, Blogger Melvisdog said...

It's difficult to argue with Faux but people's memories are short. IF there were another, it will depend on the end of year standings. If Montreal passes Ottawa: Markov. If Anaheim takes the Pacific: Pronger. If Detroit bounces back from their mini-slump and remains dominant: Rafalski.

At 3:06 a.m., February 19, 2008, Blogger Melvisdog said...

To clarify, this assumes that Rafalski can return strong withOUT Lidstrom in the lineup becoming the #1 mail carrier.

Note: It creates many many IFS... and IF none of those happen, the league issues a moratorium on the Norris citing 'insufficient data'.

At 10:36 a.m., February 19, 2008, Blogger poploser said...

Can someone explain to me why Chris Pronger would even be considered here?

He's not near the league leaders in either offensive or defensive categories. He's not even the reason his team turned its season around. You have players all across the league having as good a "Norris" season as Pronger - Markov, Gonchar, Rafalski, Phaneuf.

At 11:20 a.m., February 19, 2008, Blogger NeuroJoe said...

As a Wings fan I'm biased, but thinking about Lidstrom's injury and how much he'll be missed by the Wings really drives home his status as one of the best NHL defensemen ever. If you were to ask 100 random hockey fans, "Who is the best defenseman in hockey over the past 10 years?", I imagine at least 80 would say Lidstrom. Try that with a forward. I think you'd get a lot of variability: Jagr, Thornton, Sakic, Forsberg, Shanny, maybe some Sundin, Modano, etc etc.

Lidstrom's +/- numbers are just sick (I know he's been on an offensive juggernaut for much of the time, but still). He's closing in on +400 for his career and has NEVER had a minus year. He's 3rd this year in assists as a D man; the rest of the top 18 are all forwards.

The influence he's had on the game over the past ~15 years can't be overestimated IMHO.


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