Growing up in the 90's provided me a chance to see the game of hockey change drastically. In the early 90's a point a game player was my mental cutoff between an offensive star and an average player. During the 92-93 season, 69 players scored 75 points or more that season giving nearly all of them a point a game average. Eric Lindros had 75 point in 61 games that year and Gary Roberts had 79 points in 58 games. Even Kelly Kisio who wasn't known as a superstar had 78 points in 78 games. By the end of the 90's, the 98-99 season would only see 15 players score 75 points or more and the scoring would never be much higher than that going forward. Even this season with the final week getting underway, we have 8 players who have 75 points and the potential for a couple more but that's about it.
What has not changed however for the past couple decades is the importance of having a defenseman who can make a difference at both ends of the ice and that is what today's post is all about. One of the best defenseman of all-time in Al MacInnis and one of the best in today's game with Victor Hedman.
2013-14 Titanium Game Worn Gear Auto Al MacInnis /50
2013-14 Titanium Game Worn Gear Auto Victor Hedman /50
Al MacInnis had one of those careers that most people envy and any rookie starting in the NHL would love to live. Victor is just part way through his and how well it will end only time will tell. At the beginning this year it looked like Tampa could be a force to be reckoned with and for periods of time this season I would say it's true.However in the past couple days it looks like they will be making the attempt at a second straight Stanley Cup Finals without their marquee sniper Steven Stamkos who is out with a blood clot for a period of 1-3 months which could very well mean we have seen the last of him in a Lightning uniform. Thankfully for Lightning fans, Hedman is under contract for one more season before he too will hit the market as a UFA.