There are already many that are baffled by the lack of Detroit Red Wings Pavel Datsyuk or Henrik Zetterberg on the roster. The Red Wings had been battling with the Pittsburgh Penguins and the Vancouver Canucks for first over all in the league. The Penguins have 4 players representing them this year while the Canucks have 3 players heading to the All Star Game while the Red Wings have one – captain Nicklas Lidstrom.
Now Datsyuk not being chosen for the ASG makes complete sense. He is injured. If you remember back two years ago to the last ASG (No ASG last year due to Olympics) Datsyuk and Lidstrom were both suspended by the NHL for the first game post-All Star Weekend because they declined the invite do to injury. To avoid the drama that would surely ensue out of Hockeytown if they league had chosen Datsyuk knowing he was injured; and then have him decline again and again deal with the suspension issue.
As much as I’d love to see the tinfoil hats return – I get it. Datsyuk was left off. Best for everyone involved so all I can say is get well Pavel!
Now we come to the Zetter snub.
Do I think the NHL snubbed the other half of the Euro Twins? No.
Brendan Shanahan, the current Vice President of Hockey and Business Development (who lead the way in the ASG revival efforts), an eight-time All-Star himself even came out and announced via Twitter yesterday:
Without mentioning teams/players, the answer is yes. NHL was approached by certain players thru their GM. Battling injuries & need to heal.
Sure he doesn’t come right out and say “Ken Holland and I spoke about Henrik Zetterberg and his desire to skip the All-Star Game in hopes to have some time to recover from some minor injuries. Due to the lost of Datsyuk, Dan Cleary, Brad Stuart, Chris Osgood, and for a while there Valtteri Filppula Zetterberg has been pulling extra duty and could use some time to recover.”
Now do I think some form of that conversation took place? Yes. As well as with other players that appear to be snubbed from other teams.
The All-Star Game is for the fans. To have a chance to come together for a weekend and see some of the top players in the league – in one spot. Is it fair the the fans that some of the players opt out? Maybe not. But is it fair to the players and the rest of the fans with Stanley Cup hopes to have a player risk more injury by being forced into a game that in reality doesn’t matter? No. There is a great assemblance of players heading to Raleigh, North Carolina and I think the fans that do go will have a great time.
So you don’t get to see Henrik Zetterberg or Pavel Datsyuk. Don’t focus on that – focus on who you do get to see.
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