This season has been a lost cause for the Red Wings. However, there have been a few bright spots in the lost season. Henrik Zetterberg continues to play extremely well despite now being 36 years old, which is only old in sport years. While Zetterberg’s goals are down this year, it is important to remember that there is more to hockey than just scoring goals. Zetterberg still leads the team in points with 55 this year and continues to have an important impact for the Wings.
Up until this year, Zetterberg had spent his entire career playing with Pavel Datsyuk, but the absence of Datsyuk has not altered Zetterberg from his path towards the Hall of Fame this season. Zetterberg has continued to be one of the Red Wings best players this season. Obviously that is not saying much considering how bad the team has been this year, but Zetterberg has continued to be a top player in other ways as well along with his performance on the ice.
Zetterberg has helped to improve the players around him. While Zetterberg has not scored many goals (14) this season, he continues to be a threat through his passing skills. His ability to set players up to score this season has been quite impressive. With an offense that does not score often, it is important to make every opportunity count and Zetterberg has made that happen this season with his 41 assists.
Zetterberg has been one of the few veterans this season to help the younger players play up to expectations. Anthony Mantha, for example, has improved quite a bit this season from Zetterberg’s leadership. Yes, Mantha still has a lot to learn, but Zetterberg has helped him immensely. It is not just Mantha that Zetterberg has helped to make into a better player around him, but Mantha is probably the most obvious.
Henrik Zetterberg is still an important asset to the Red Wings despite being 36 years old. Zetterberg is continuing his path to the Hall of Fame. Zetterberg’s leadership and passing skills are helping the younger players around him to develop. It may not seem like a lot, but in a lost season, it is important to help the younger players learn as much as possible. Zetterberg is one of a kind and the Red Wings are lucky to have him on their side.