By Nick Villano @nick_villano on April 11, 2014
There are always veterans people look at in the NHL playoffs and wonder if this could be their last run. All of the players on this list either have never won Lord Stanley's Cup or they are extremely close to retirement. These ten players are worthy more than anyone else of a championship.
Daniel Alfredsson's first season in Detroit could have ended in utter disappointment with all the injuries the team suffered. Thanks mostly to Gustav Nyquist, the Red Wings are as hot as ever coming into the playoffs. While most would love to watch Alfredsson win in Ottawa, seeing him win at all is something everyone can root for.
Jarome Iginla might be the most well-liked player in the NHL. He has spent 16 years in the league with only one Stanley Cup Finals appearance. You can't help but root for him.
Mark Streit had his rights traded from the New York Islanders to the Philadelphia Flyers. He plays hard every night and seems to be a big cause in the turnaround of the Flyers' defense. He isn't a well-known name since he spent most of his career overseas, but you still want him to raise the cup one day.
Michal Handzus is not a name you hear a lot about on the Blackhawks, but he is a very good veteran. He left the year before the Kings won the Cup. He was traded just in time to win his first Cup last season. He is a team guy you can't help but root for no matter what team he is on.
Some people may have a certain opinion on Dany Heatley thanks to some off-ice issues, but you have to admit that he has overcome some odds. He has never even smelled a Stanley Cup. Maybe Minnesota can shock the world from a Wild Card spot.
Joe Thornton is the Steve Nash of the NHL. He has been great some seasons, even MVP like, but he can't win the big game. Thornton left the Bruins and they have been to two Cup Finals since. After so many years of playoff woes, it's hard to root against the Sharks.
It isn't easy to root for Marion Gaborik after the way he has acted in the past, but he definitely deserves a Stanley Cup. He has been one of the better scorers in the NHL, but he never was on a team like this. For once he can sit back and just do what he does best while the rest of the team helps him with what he isn't good at.
Teemu Selanne is a player you just can't root against. His infectious smile and fun personality make him a blast to watch. He likely will not be back after this year, so it will be nice to watch him raise the Cup one last time.
Ray Whitney may be the longest shot on this list. The Dallas Stars aren't even in the playoffs yet. He isn't the player he once was, but you don't expect that after 21 years in the league. This is most likely his last year in the league, and it would be nice to see him raise the Cup again.
Jay Bouwmeester spent a good chunk of his career in Florida trying to turn around the Panthers. He may only be 30 years old, but he seems like he is older since he has been in hockey turmoil for so long. He must feel like he is in heaven playing for the St. Louis defense.
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