The Detroit Red Wings got a much-needed bounce-back win on Thursday night, as they snapped a seven-game losing streak by defeating the Carolina Hurricanes by a 4-3 score. While the star of the night was Gustav Nyquist with two goals, captain Henrik Zetterberg had another great night, assisting on three of the Red Wings’ four goals and improving his season points total to 26. After 23 games, Zetterberg has only been kept off the scoresheet seven times, and he and Pavel Datysuk have a sizable points lead over the rest of their team. It is still early in the season, but Zetterberg is on pace to set a career high in points and make a run at his best goal total from his previous 10 seasons.
The Red Wings have needed all of the offense that Zetterberg has provided, and he continues to be a great choice as the successor to Nicklas Lidstrom as team captain. A line featuring him, Nyquist and Johan Franzen showed some definite chemistry against the Hurricanes, and could get left together for a few more games. In the lockout-shortened 2012-13 season, Zetterberg put up 48 points in 46 games, so there’s definitely reason to believe the 100-point milestone is achievable. He scored a career-high 43 goals and put up 92 points as the Red Wings roared to a Stanley Cup championship in 2008, but he hasn’t notched more than 80 points in any season since. He has finished first or second in scoring for Detroit in every season dating back to two lockouts ago, and it seems almost certain he and Datsyuk will lead the way again. The 100-point plateau is an amazing milestone and one Zetterberg could reach this season, but he’d surely trade that kind of personal milestone for a chance to hoist the Stanley Cup again.