Tuesday, 23 September 2014

NHL: Top Duo's

In the last couple seasons, I have been noticing that many teams have some extremely dynamic duo's.  I am looking for many of these guys to make a splash in this upcoming season.

Crosby and Kunitz:   This duo has been dominant throughout the past several years.  Crosby is probably the most dominant offensive player in the game; hands down.  He has won countless awards, and is considered the best by many of his peers.  Kunitz has found a home playing on the wing with Sid.  Kunitz is definitely a great complimentary player who even found his way onto team Canada this year, playing alongside Crosby.  The one flaw with this duo is the simple fact that Crosby dominates the stat category.  Kunitz is often criticized for not matching Crosby's point production.  Last year alone, Crosby put up nearly 40 more points than Kunitz while playing on the same line.  Regardless, the two will not likely be split apart anytime soon and should once again be a dangerous duo come regular season.

Toews and Kane: These two guys have become the face of the Chicago Blackhawks.  The two young forwards have just re-signed with the team for 10+ million dollars per season.  These deals are long term and it appears that Chicago will keep these guys as the team's core.  Captain; Johnathan Toews is just 26 and has already won every possible team accolade in the sport, including a Stanley Cup, an Olympic gold as well as a World Junior Gold.  His partner in crime; Patrick Kane, has made a reputation for his flashy moves and ability to come up huge when the game is on the line.  They scored only 69 and 68 points a piece last season, but they have already won Stanley's Cup twice in their short careers'.  The success of the team is one of the main reasons why these two shine so brightly.  They have led the team into the elite of the West, and they should carry the Hawks to another strong season.

Ryan Getzlaf and Corey Perry: This Anaheim duo is looking to challenge for top duo once again this season.  They both have averaged roughly a point per game for the last several seasons and will once again look to break 80 points a piece.  These two guys play a much different style than many on this list.  They both like to play physical and are known for being gritty.  Getzlaf beat Perry by 5 points last season, but many consider Perry to be the stronger offensive threat.  Many fantasy owners are considering Perry the best multi-category forward available this year.  I am expecting these guys to carry the team once again this year.  However, this year they might be a little stronger all around as the Ducks seem to be surrounding them with a somewhat decent roster.  

Jamie Benn and Tyler Seguin:  This duo is a relatively new superpower in the West.  Nonetheless, they have literally carried the teams entire offence.  Last season, they both scored over 30 goals.The next highest goal total for another Star player was 17.  Without them, I believe that Dallas would be living the the basement of the West.  The pair combined for 161 games, and 163 points last season.  I expect them both top exceed 80 and have a strong year all around.  Young line mate Valeri Nichushkin seeems to be developing very well for his age.  The kid is a monstrous winger and will help open up space with Jamie Benn.  I know we are talking about duo's, but up until lately, the pair have not had anybody to play with.  This should only help them prosper as a line.  

Henrik and Daniel Sedin: These guys are an often overlooked of late.  They seemed to have hit their prime during the 2010-11 seasons, and just kind of faded from that point,  In that season, Daniel put up 104 points, and Henrik racked up 94.  Plain and simple, when Vancouver is rolling, these guys are rolling.  This was the same year that the Canucks had some depth down the lineup.  Kesler was scoring, and the Canucks Defense was dominant.  For the first time in three years, the Canucks are coming into a season looking great.  They have added some pieces, and the Sedins should see a lot more opportunities for good match-ups.  With new management and proper coaching, the two should see limited minutes, but in prime situations.  I can honestly say that I am expecting 70+ points each from these guys.  I believe that the Canucks will shock the West this year and make a push for the top 6 in the Conference.  

Missed the Cut:

Richards and Carter

Datsyuk and Zetterberg