Nick Lidstrom, Pavel Datsyuk Out for Red Wings: How Will This Affect West?

Jon WyhopCorrespondent IJanuary 22, 2009

With Detroit Red Wings' Pavel Datsyuk and Nick Lidstrom out with injuries the Western Conference will be down two great players. The replacements, Patrick Marleau and Stephane Robidas, are not bad players at all, but having them come from different teams could cause chemistry problems, since Lidstrom and Datsyuk already have chemistry. The have been playing together for the last eight years.

Also, the two Wings have a combined 26 goals this season, compared to the 27 of the other two players. It might not be a big change stat wise, but that shows that with Marleau scoring 25 of those goals he is, in a way, selfish. With Datsyuk and Lidstrom both having well over 20 assists, they provide a better chance for the team to win.

At least there are some positives in this. With the two Wings resting, they will be healthy and ready for the rest of the season as they try to make the playoffs for the 18th straight year and possibly win the Stanley Cup again back to back, just as they did in '97 and '98.