Sidney Crosby and the NHL's Ultimate Fantasy Team

Jordan MatthewsAnalyst IIIJune 10, 2011

Sidney Crosby and the NHL's Ultimate Fantasy Team

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    PITTSBURGH, PA - JANUARY 01:  Sidney Crosby #87 of the Pittsburgh Penguins looks on while playing against the Washington Capitals during the 2011 NHL Bridgestone Winter Classic at Heinz Field on January 1, 2011 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.  (Photo by Jami
    Jamie Squire/Getty Images

    Every September die-hard hockey fans look forward to drafting season for fantasy hockey. We get so excited to stack our teams and then we realize that after the first round almost every player you imagined would be on your team is gone.

    So here it is, the Ultimate (Or should it be called impossible?) Fantasy team, line by line. Most of the entries will be obvious until we get a bit deeper, but hey, we can still have fun with this can't we?

Mike Babcock: Detroit Red Wings

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    GLENDALE, AZ - OCTOBER 16:  Head coach Mike Babcock of the Detroit Red Wings watches from the bench during the NHL game against the Phoenix Coyotes at Jobing.com Arena on October16, 2010 in Glendale, Arizona.  (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
    Christian Petersen/Getty Images

    Head Coach

    Babcock has the best win percentage of the decade, and in the last three years, he has a Stanley Cup ring and a gold medal to his name. The only thing that could knock Babcock out of this spot within the next few years is if Scotty Bowman made a comeback.

Dave Tippett: Phoenix Coyotes

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    GLENDALE, AZ - MARCH 24:  Head coach  Dave Tippett of the Phoenix Coyotes watches from the bench during the NHL game against the Columbus Blue Jackets at Jobing.com Arena on March 24, 2011 in Glendale, Arizona. The Coyotes defeated the Blue Jackets 3-0.
    Christian Petersen/Getty Images

    Assistant Coach

    Despite recently coaching non-favorites such as the Dallas Stars and the Phoenix Coyotes, Tippett still posts the 2nd best win percentage of the decade.

Barry Trotz: Nashville Predators

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    VANCOUVER, CANADA - MAY 7: Head Coach Barry Trotz of the Nashville Predators listens to a questions during a press conference after Game Five of the Western Conference Semifinals against the Vancouver Canucks during the 2011 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs on Ma
    Rich Lam/Getty Images

    Assistant Coach

    Talk about a guy who does a lot with a little. Despite the lack of outstanding talent up front and a low salary, Trotz always seems to have Nashville in the thick of it during the season and into the playoffs.

Sidney Crosby: Pittsburgh Penguins

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    UNIONDALE, NY - DECEMBER 29:  Sidney Crosby #87 of the Pittsburgh Penguins against the New York Islanders at the Nassau Coliseum on December 29, 2010 in Uniondale, New York. The Islanders defeated the Penguins 2-1 in the shootout.  (Photo by Bruce Bennett
    Bruce Bennett/Getty Images

    First Line Center

    A little obvious isn't it? Look at the title? Crosby had a phenomenal season cut short after an unfortunate concussion this year, and depending on his recovery, a long rest could serve him well upon his return to the NHL.

Alexander Ovechkin: Washington Capitals

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    TAMPA, FL - MAY 03:  Alex Ovechkin #8 of the Washington Capitals celebrates a goal by Mike Knuble #22 (not shown) at 59 seconds of the second period against the Tampa Bay Lightning in Game Three of the Eastern Conference Semifinals during the 2011 NHL Sta
    Bruce Bennett/Getty Images

    First Line Winger

    Ovechkin's production slipped a bit in the last year, which some people will claim was because of an increased focus on his defensive play. Regardless, Ovechkin is still one of the best players in the NHL.

Patrick Kane: Chicago Blackhawks

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    CHICAGO, IL - MARCH 23:  Patrick Kane #88 of the Chicago Blackhawks skates against the Florida Panthers at the United Center on March 23, 2011 in Chicago, Illinois. The Blackhawks defeated the Panthers 4-0.  (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
    Bruce Bennett/Getty Images

    First Line Winger

    Kane will not only bring his speed and skill to the first line, but also the experience of winning the Stanley Cup. Kane scored the Cup-clinching goal in 2010.

Nicklas Lidstrom: Detroit Red Wings

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    DETROIT - MAY 6: Nicklas Lidstrom #5 of the Detroit Red Wings skates against the San Jose Sharks in Game Four of the Western Conference Semifinals during the 2011 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs on May 6, 2011 at Joe Louis Arena in Detroit, Michigan. (Photo by G
    Gregory Shamus/Getty Images

    First Line Defender

    A lot of people will criticize Lidstrom for his age, and I'd suggest checking his point totals before doing so. The winner of six Norris trophies and possibly looking at his seventh shows no signs of slowing down.

Shea Weber: Nashville Predators

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    ANAHEIM, CA - APRIL 15:  Shea Weber #6 of the Nashville Predators looks on prior to the start of Game Two of the Western Conference Quarterfinals against the Anaheim Ducks during the 2011 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs at Honda Center on April 15, 2011 in Anahe
    Jeff Gross/Getty Images

    First Line Defender

    The best defender under 30 in my opinion. When you're the top scorer on your team as a defender it says something, even if you're playing for Nashville. Plus, who wouldn't want Weber and Lidstrom on the same line; they were a combined +13 in the 2011 All-Star Game.

Pavel Datsyuk: Detroit Red Wings

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    SAN JOSE, CA - MAY 01:  Pavel Datsyuk #13 of the Detroit Red Wings in action against the San Jose Sharks in Game Two of the Western Conference Semifinals during the 2011 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs at HP Pavilion on May 1, 2011 in San Jose, California.  (Pho
    Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

    Second Line Center

    I had a hard time deciding between Datsyuk and Crosby for the first line center, I think they both stand alone in the case for best player in the world. In the end, I went with Crosby for the scoring line, and Datsyuk for the shut down line. Datsyuk was on pace for another 90 point season last year (before breaking his hand), was the best PPG player in the playoffs, and is still the best two-way player in the game.

Henrik Zetterberg: Detroit Red Wings

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    DETROIT, MI - MARCH 30:  Henrik Zetterberg #40 of the Detroit Red Wings skates against the St. Louis Blues at Joe Louis Arena on March 30, 2011 in Detroit, Michigan.  (Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)
    Gregory Shamus/Getty Images

    Second Line Winger

    I know what's coming. "Three Wings already?" Crucify me, but they all deserve to be there, and there's no way I'd put Zetterberg and Datsyuk on different lines. This is the shutdown line, Zetterberg is one of the best two-way players in the league, behind only the likes of Datsyuk, Ryan Kesler, Jonathan Toews, and perhaps a few others. 80 points in 80 games while spending half the season on the second line playing hurt is nothing too shabby either.

Rick Nash: Columbus Blue Jackets

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    GLENDALE, AZ - MARCH 24:  Rick Nash #61 of the Columbus Blue Jackets during the NHL game against the Phoenix Coyotes at Jobing.com Arena on March 24, 2011 in Glendale, Arizona.  The Coyotes defeated the Blue Jackets 3-0.  (Photo by Christian Petersen/Gett
    Christian Petersen/Getty Images

    Second Line Winger

    Don't let his stats fool you. 32 goals is pretty exceptional when you play for the Blue Jackets. With two smaller playmakers on the line a big goal scorer was necessary to balance things out a little.

Zdeno Chara: Boston Bruins

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    BOSTON, MA - JUNE 08:  Zdeno Chara #33 of the Boston Bruins skates against the Vancouver Canucks during Game Four of the 2011 NHL Stanley Cup Final at TD Garden on June 8, 2011 in Boston, Massachusetts.  (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
    Elsa/Getty Images

    Second Line Defender

    Chara may very well be on his way to capturing the Stanley Cup. Regardless of whether the Bruins win or lose, Chara's height and the length of his reach give him an instant advantage over the opposing team's forwards.

Kevin Bieksa: Vancouver Canucks

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    BOSTON, MA - JUNE 08:  Kevin Bieksa #3 of the Vancouver Canucks looks on after a play against the Boston Bruins during Game Four of the 2011 NHL Stanley Cup Final at TD Garden on June 8, 2011 in Boston, Massachusetts.  (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)
    Harry How/Getty Images

    Second Line Defender

    I don't know what it is about this guy, but something makes me think he's gonna be the next big thing as a defender, even if he is 29 years old.

    Maybe it's just because I hope to be seeing him in a different jersey next season. Remember how I promised no more Red Wings on this list? Well, let's just say what happens after July 1st it out of my hands, but I'd be more than happy to have Kevin Bieksa breaks that promise.

Ryan Kesler: Vancouver Canucks

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    BOSTON, MA - JUNE 08:  Ryan Kesler #17 of the Vancouver Canucks kneels on the against the Boston Bruins during Game Four of the 2011 NHL Stanley Cup Final at TD Garden on June 8, 2011 in Boston, Massachusetts.  (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)
    Harry How/Getty Images

    Third Line Center

    Kesler, in my opinion, is the best American player in the NHL. It seems like every year he's always challenging Pavel Datsyuk for the Selke trophy.

Daniel Sedin: Vancouver Canucks

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    BOSTON, MA - JUNE 08:  Daniel Sedin #22 of the Vancouver Canucks skates against the Boston Bruins during Game Four of the 2011 NHL Stanley Cup Final at TD Garden on June 8, 2011 in Boston, Massachusetts.  (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)
    Harry How/Getty Images

    Third Line Winger

    I dunno what I like more about this guy, the fact that he's a great player or the fact that if he gets sick or injured, his brother could throw on his jersey and nobody would know the difference. Shhhh..... Don't tell anybody.

Marian Hossa: Chicago Blackhawks

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    VANCOUVER, CANADA - APRIL 13: Alexandre Burrows #14 of the Vancouver Canucks tries to stop Marian Hossa #81of the Chicago Blackhawks from getting to the front of the net during the third period in Game One of the Western Conference Quarterfinals during th
    Rich Lam/Getty Images

    Third Line Winger

    Hossa is another one of the league's great two-way players, and pairing him with Kesler establishes another great shut-down line.

Drew Doughty: LA Kings

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    LOS ANGELES, CA - APRIL 02:  Drew Doughty #8 of the Los Angeles Kings looks on against the Dallas Stars at Staples Center on April 2, 2011 in Los Angeles, California.  (Photo by Jeff Gross/Getty Images)
    Jeff Gross/Getty Images

    Third Line Defender

    Doughty had a subpar season this year, but that can probably be attributed to a concussion suffered at the beginning of the season. You'll probably see his name a lot in the Norris nominees over the next decade.

Kris Letang: Pittsburgh Penguins

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    TAMPA, FL - APRIL 25: Kris Letang #58 of the Pittsburgh Penguins checks Sean Bergenheim #10 of the Tampa Bay Lightning in Game Six of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals during the 2011 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs at the St. Pete Times Forum on April 25, 20
    Eliot J. Schechter/Getty Images

    Third Line Defender

    Maybe he had a fluke season, but I'm willing to give Letang a chance. Call this the youth line for the defense.

Steven Stamkos: Tampa Bay Lightning

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    BOSTON, MA - MAY 27:  Steven Stamkos #91 of the Tampa Bay Lightning returns to the game after being hit in the face with a puck in Game Seven of the Eastern Conference Finals against the Boston Bruins during the 2011 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs at TD Garden
    Elsa/Getty Images

    Fourth Line Center

    Stamkos has a bright future ahead, he's not even out of his entry-level contract and he's already gone to the Eastern Conference Finals after posting a 91 point season.

Martin St. Louis: Tampa Bay Lightning

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    TAMPA, FL - MAY 25:  Martin St. Louis #26 celebrates his second period goal with Steven Stamkos #91 of the Tampa Bay Lightning in Game Six of the Eastern Conference Finals against the Boston Bruins during the 2011 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs at St Pete Times
    Justin K. Aller/Getty Images

    Fourth Line Winger

    Some people think he's the reason Stamkos is doing so well. Whether that's true or not, I'm not willing to keep one of them away from the other after watching them dominate the entire 2010-2011 season.

Dany Heatley: San Jose Sharks

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    SAN JOSE, CA - MAY 22:  Dany Heatley #15 of the San Jose Sharks skates against the Vancouver Canucks in Game Four of the Western Conference Finals during the 2011 Stanley Cup Playoffs at HP Pavilion on May 22, 2011 in San Jose, California. The Canucks def
    Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

    Fourth Line Winger

    Why did I put Heatley here? I don't quite know myself. I guess I just threw the names of all the remaining wingers in a hat and drew from it. Plus there's no need for Sharks fans lashing out because a nobody on this list represented their team. Oh well, just don't let Heatley anywhere near your car, and don't tell him when the playoffs start and you should be fine!

Ryan Miller: Buffalo Sabres

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    PHILADELPHIA, PA - APRIL 26:  Ryan Miller #30 of the Buffalo Sabres reacts during their game against the Philadelphia Flyers in Game Seven of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals during the 2011 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs at Wells Fargo Center on April 26,
    Bruce Bennett/Getty Images

    Starting Goalie

    In my opinion he's still the best goalie in the league, and is by far the MVP of the Buffalo Sabres.

Tim Thomas

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    BOSTON, MA - JUNE 08:  Tim Thomas #30 of the Boston Bruins celebrates after defeating the Vancouver Canucks in Game Four of the 2011 NHL Stanley Cup Final at TD Garden on June 8, 2011 in Boston, Massachusetts. The Boston Bruins defeated the Vancouver Canu
    Harry How/Getty Images

    Backup Goalie

    Believe it or not, the United States does have the best players of a specific position in hockey. Thomas' performance this season and further into the playoffs was phenomenal, and he may just have a Stanley Cup to add to his resume next week.

Ken Holland: Detroit Red Wings

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    PITTSBURGH - MAY 28:  General Manager Ken Holland of the Detroit Red Wings accepts the William M. Jennings Trophy for Chris Osgood (not pictured) during the NHL Awards presentation at the Omni William Penn Hotel on May 28, 2008 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
    Dave Sandford/Getty Images

    General Manager

    Reader: "This article stinks, you're completely biased to the Red Wings!"

    Response: "I'll change the general manager as soon as there's another one who can go 20 straight years without having to sink his team for high draft picks."