Detroit Red Wings Life Without Nick Lidstrom Is Terrifying To Imagine

Nick Lidstrom doesn’t block shots. He doesn’t body check anyone. He’s never thrown an elbow. His next fight will be his first.

The greatest hockey defenseman of his time, or maybe of any time, isn’t supposed to be so mild-mannered. He isn’t supposed to be less physical than a second baseman.

Lidstrom, the Red Wings all-universe defenseman, is 41 years old. In human years. In hockey playing years, he’s closer to 30, because he hasn’t used his body as a battering ram or for someone else’s target practice.

Lidstrom plays hockey like Bobby Fischer played chess and Minnesota Fats played billiards—literally. No one has seen that 200’x 80’ sheet of ice better than Lidstrom, who is always a move or two ahead of his opponent. He’s the geometric hockey player—using the puck’s caroms and angles like Fats used those green felt rails.

There hasn’t been a defenseman like him, before or since he entered the NHL in 1991. I’ll put up a batch of my wife’s Pasta Fagioli that there won’t be one like him after, either. Ever.

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NHL Central Division Week in Review

patrick kane shirtless

As the Columbus Blue Jackets are positioning themselves in 242 days for either top amateur prospects Nail Kabulov or Filip Forsberg in the 2012 NHL Entry Draft, and as I primarily cover the Blue Jackets, I am left with little to write about in a positive manner.

Therefore, as part of a continuing series, here is a summary of the NHL Central Division for the first two weeks of the season (in order of the current Central Division standings):

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Detroit and Columbus Give Blackhawks two Divisional Mountains to Climb

jackets_wings

When I covered the 2009 NHL Western Conference Finals, I saw firsthand when the Detroit Red Wings soundly defeated the Chicago Blackhawks. Actually, I saw Detroit own Chicago the way Goldman Sachs owns the United States government, and it made me realize the only way the Blackhawks were ever going to win the Cup was if they did during a Detroit down year.

Sure enough last year, the Hawks peaked before the implosion of salary cap grenade, and at the same exact time Detroit suffered a ton of broken wings. But now that those Wings have all healed, and the road back to the top of division goes through the Motor City; and Columbus too.

I don’t see St. Louis or Nashville as a legitimate threat, but if the Hawks are goign to turn this epitome of mediocrity that is 2010-11 into a worthwhile season, they’ll have get past both the Red Wings and the Blue Jackets.

By Paul M. Banks

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NHL Season Preview: Central Division

blackhawks limo

It’s that time of year again!!! The air is getting colder, and the sweaters are coming out.  The hockey sweaters that is.  From now until Opening Day of the NHL 2010 season, look out for new division previews, new in depth team outlooks, and big predictions and prognostications of the glorious season to come.  Today, we take a look at the Central Division, the Chicago Blackhawks and what to expect this season.

2010-2011 NHL SEASON INFORMATION EXTRAPOLATION

By: Bryan Vickroy

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