15 Points to Consider

Jeff Angus

2011-01-09

Ballard

 

Elliotte Friedman's weekly 30 Thoughts column on the CBC website is the best read in hockey. Friedman is insightful, articulate, knowledgeable, fair, and most importantly, interesting. He has sources and contacts in the hockey world that most could only dream of. Most importantly, has an ability which is rare in this day and age – providing a balanced and reasonable opinion on the league, the players, and all 30 of the clubs.

 

Each week I will post my own observations (I couldn't completely steal Friedman's idea so I'll pick a number other than 30) with a heavy emphasis on the fantasy side of hockey, of course. Prospects, goalies, sleepers, busts, it will all be covered each week.

 

1. Henrik Zetterberg's performance against the Canucks on Saturday night was the best single-game performance I have witnessed from an opposing player against Vancouver all season. He was all over the ice – playing hard against the Sedin twins, setting up the only Detroit goal, and finishing the game with almost 25 minutes of ice time. He also finished above 50 percent in the faceoff circle, no small accomplishment against the likes of Sedin, Ryan Kesler, and Manny Malhotra. Zetterberg is an underrated player, especially here at DobberHockey. There are two reasons as to why. Firstly, he plays so hard defensively that he doesn't put himself in positions to produce offense on a consistent basis. He is not the type of player to leave his defensive responsibilities in hopes of creating offense. Secondly, he's the type of player who plays better in the postseason, and most pools don't count playoff points.

 

2. It was great to see Matt Calvert score his first career NHL goal over the weekend. For those who don't know much about the feisty winger, you are about to find out why he is one of my favourite prospects. I was excited to see Brandon play a few years ago. Their top line featured two highly-touted 1st round draft picks in Brayden Schenn and Scott Glennie. However, it was their Zach Parise-like line mate who I couldn't ignore. Calvert skated miles that game, and on the ice, he never seemed to be away from the puck for more than a second or two. At 5'9" and tipping the scales at 175 pounds, Calvert is far from an imposing physical presence. Many expect him to develop into a solid third line winger capable of chipping in with 12-15 goals. However, if there is one thing I have learned in my years of watching hockey, it is to never discount a skilled player with a lot of hockey sense and even more heart.

 

3. Roberto Luongo is many things – elite goaltender, former captain, and a great embellisher (it's the Italian in him). Above all else, he is stubborn. He would never adm