The 2011-2012 NHL season is just kicking off but there are already some trends worth watching. Right now we all our trying to justify our first round picks with the hopes that they all get going and spare us a season of scrambling to the waiver wire. Let’s take a look at the current most dominant lines in hockey, in an attempt to reinforce our selections.
Daniel Sedin – Henrik Sedin – Alex Burrows
Henrik Sedin won the Art Ross during the 2009-2010 season with his 112 point season. Brother Daniel Sedin followed up the next season with a 104 point campaign of his own, earning the same covetous award. With the League’s top two scorers over the past two seasons, How can this trio not be referred to as the top line in hockey? Through four games, the Vancouver Canucks top line combined for four goals and 13 points. With Ryan Kesler out of the lineup, they are relied on perhaps more than ever and still producing.
Steve Downie – Steven Stamkos – Martin St. Louis
Downie recently moved off the top line but the combination of Stamkos and St. Louis definitely deserve a look. Only the Sedins combined for more points last season as Stamkos and St. Louis posted a combined 76 goals and 190 points. Off to a slower start, this troika has four goals and eight points over four games which is not too shabby. While coach Guy Boucher is known for rotating his lines on a consistent basis, he always keeps those two together.
Bobby Ryan – Ryan Getzlaf – Corey Perry
Goose eggs across the board. Who would have thought ‘the big line’ would not have a single point following their dominance down the stretch last season. After combining for 100 goals (which included 20 game winners) and 254 points we don’t think we’re out on a limb by saying they will be fine over the course of the season. With 21 shots through three games, they continue to generate scoring chances which is a good indication they are simply snake-bitten. Considering the bottom lines have chipped in a fair share, the big line should continue to wreak havoc on opponent’s defensemen all season long.
Henrik Zetterberg – Pavel Datsyuk – Danny Cleary
Similar to Downie’s inclusion above, Cleary probably moves around the lineup as the main focus remains Zetterberg and Datsyuk. In terms of true dominance, the Red Wings top line is second to none as they don’t turn over the puck and play a game surrounded by puck possession. Statistically they are no slouches either with two goals and six points over their initial three games. While neither player has won an Art Ross Trophy, they define the word dominance in hockey.
Alex Ovechkin – Nicklas Backstrom – Mike Knuble
Probably the streakiest of the above options. If this article was written three years ago, they would probably win this vote by a landslide but coach Bruce Boudreau’s line changes and system tweaks have taken some of their dynamic scoring out of the box score. Nevertheless, the three combined for two goals and seven points over the first three games after posting 74 goals and 190 points the season before. They certainly deserve a mention based on pure potential.
So we leave you, the reader, with the vote:
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