Henrik’s been atop the points race for at least a week now and he’s hardly been noticed, talked about, or praised by anyone other than Canuck Nation. In fact, whenever Ovechkin and Crosby are up there they get all the spot light. Heck, even when Kopitar was up there he was the NHL’s golden boy and everyone was all over him. “Kopitar this” and “Kopitar that”. Where’s Kopitar now, he’s certainly not still at the top. So what gives?
Hank’s no fluke. He’s climbed his way up the points standings, he took over first, he’s been monstrous for the Canucks and he’s established himself as one of the elite forwards in this game putting himself above names like Crosby, Kovalchuk, Ovechkin, and Thornton just to name a few. That’s some pretty elite company. Not only that, he’s been quiet in doing so. He’s not a rockstar like Ovechkin. He’s not the NHL’s posterchild like Crosby. He does his job quietly game in and game out and the fact he’s up there and has remained up there accounts for a lot, yet he gets no respect from the league, and the Eastern media don’t even notice he exists.
Henrik Sedin proved to everyone that he was capable of leading this team without his brother when Daniel went down to injury and proved to everyone that individually he was a difference maker. He set himself apart from his brother and answered the question we’ve always been wondering: “What happens when you split up the Sedins?”. His numbers garner a little more recognition and it baffles me as to why Henrik isn’t given a little more respect around this league.
He leads the NHL in points, points on home ice, points against other divisions, and even strength points to name a few offensive categories. He has a top tier plus/minus and he has the second highest points per game at 1.36. A testament to how good he’s been is the number of points he has at even strength. He’s finding a way to get it done without doing it on the Power Play like other players in the league who rack of the PP points. Even Christian Ehrhoff has more PP points than him. Even more impressive is his efficiency when he’s on the ice. He’s amounted his league leading 64 points this season in substantially less time than anyone else. Henrik Sedin’s average time on ice per game ranks him 56th in the league, in some cases more than 2 minutes per game less than any of the other forwards in the NHL’s top 10 for scoring. In fact he’s only hit 30 shifts in a single game once this season and that was last night against the Minnesota Wild.
In 47 games for the Canucks this season he has been held pointless in only 11 games and during that span has also strung together two point streaks of 9 and 10 games. He has been in on over 40% of all goals scored by the Canucks this season and has 20 multi point games so far this year. He’s proven he’s not just a player maker but he can score goals and he’s on pace to shatter his career highs and break the 30 goal plateau for the first time in his career and be the highest point getter this team has seen since Markus Naslund had 104 points in a season.
Henrik Sedin has risen to the top of the NHL and it’s about time the league noticed.