Sunday, December 16, 2007

Lady Byng Leader

Earlier this season, I picked Daniel Alfredsson of the Ottawa Senators as the Lady Byng leader. Though Alfredsson continues to have a good season, he is no longer the leader. The new leader is Pavel Datsyuk of the Detroit Red Wings. Datsyuk has half the penalty minutes Alfredsson has (four vs. eight) and nearly as many points (Datsyuk has 38 points and Alfredsson has 43). Datsyuk is playing in the lower scoring conference and that explains some of the scoring difference.

Pavel Datsyuk has had a lock on the Lady Byng Trophy lately. He won it in 2006 and 2007. Should he win it again in 2008, that will go a long way toward cementing Hall of Fame credentials. Datsyuk will still have to establish high career scoring totals (he currently has 364 career points in 394 career games). Datsyuk has a quite good chance at having a Hall of Fame career.

And Datsyuk plays the kind of game that at least enables a long career. Let's face it, it's not like the guy is drilling people in the corners. I'm not knocking him; the league needs lots of different types of players and Datsyuk doesn't need to be a ditch-digger to be effective. But if he played with the same reckless abandon of a Forsberg or Lindros, he would need a fair amount of luck and icepacks to go with those stats in order to make it to the HOF.
1) Its a silly award.
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