With NHL and Detroit Red Wings legend Nick Lidstrom retiring this offseason, he did more than just leave a big defensive gap; he also left the “C” that was on his sweater behind. The next in line for the coveted position is presumably one of the current assistant captains. On Twitter and around Detroit, the buzz is pointing to one man: Henrik Zetterberg.
The Swedish center has powered the Wings to one Stanley Cup, winning the Conn Smythe Trophy in 2008 for MVP of the playoffs along the way. He has had great success internationally as well, winning a gold medal in 2006 with the Swedish Olympic team. Zetterberg has been rock solid since coming onto the Wings, only dipping below 70 points once since 2005.
It seems his playoff beard gives him super strength. Also since 2005, he has been even bigger in the playoffs, scoring at least a point per game or better in all but 2 playoff runs. Zetterberg is one of the guys on the ice that every Detroit fan knows come playoff time that they can count on to contribute offensively and always be fully committed defensively. For a franchise that bases its success on not just getting to the playoffs, but performing in them, he is the best representation.
In short, it seems all there is left to do is make it official. The Wings must move on from their legendary captain Lidstrom, but will have full faith going forward in their next Swedish leader, Zetterberg. There will be those who have their doubts, just as many did when Steve Yzerman retired in 2006. To those who doubt, I would suggest not to bet against Hockeytown’s track record.