I have a little game I like to call....I'll think of a name. Hmm..Name Your Team.
You are the GM of an expansion team and for some strange reason you get to build your own team with ONE player off each NHL team (obviously not gonna happen, but let's say...). Keep in mind you don't really take the best player off each team, you want to well round your team into a winner, with a mix of everything, not making it an all star game. Let's name your teams.
Anaheim: There is no doubt I want Keith Carney. This guy is as solid as a rock back on the blueline and a stay at home D-man is exactly what I need.
Atlanta: I'm going with talent here, and a little bit of grit, taking Dany Heatley to be my first line winger.
Boston: I want Patrice Bergeron. This kid has done nothing but impress me, and is has a very bright future ahead of him. I have no problem having him on any one of my lines, PK, PP, or even strength.
Buffalo: I'm going a bit deep into prospect's, but I'll take Thomas Vanek, thank you very much.
Calgary: Tough choice here, wanted to take the obvious one, but I REALLY want Dion Phaneuf back on my blueline throwing his weight around. This kid reminds me so much of Sheldon Souray with even better upside. Stevens is good, but Souray is more of an overall comparison, especially if Souray starts throwing that frame of his around a little bit more.
Carolina: Erik Cole. He's the right amount of grit, skill, and defensive awareness to fill a perfect role on my team.
Chicago: Toss up between Babchuk and Ruutu, but Ruutu has an overall better upside, so I'll stick to my guns and snag another top center. I'm afraid of taking too many center's, but Ruutu is the clear choice here.
Colorado: Joe Sakic. Joe Sakic. Joe Sakic. No doubt, he's the perfect guy to provide leadership.
Columbus: Rostislav Klesla. I really think he will become a top pairing D-man and QB of the PP one day, and that day is coming soon.
Dallas: Was gonna take Steve Ott, but have that spot reserved for someone...so i'm going to take Stu Barnes. Good leadership, good PKer, and enough overall awareness to fit in perfect on this team's 4th line.
Detroit. Jiri Fischer. The thought of him paired with Dion Phaneuf is sick. Just sick.
Edmonton: The perfect team guy; Ryan Smyth.
Florida: Bouwmeester.Top pair D-man on this team, can skate like Paul Coffey and score like Bobby Orr.
Los Angeles: Sean Avery. This guy is the perfect pest, the guy everybody love's to hate.
Minnesota: Marian Gaborik. Goes great with the first line of Heatley and Sakic.
Nashville: Have to say, my favorite non-hab, Jordin Tootoo. A line with him and Avery, with Phaneuf and Fischer out there, man oh man, I'd be singing the McDonalds badabababa, I'm luvin it, every time I watch those 4 (with an addition coming soon.)
Montreal: I absolutely hate that I can't take Koivu (going to end up with wayy to many center's) but there is a prospect out there with amazing skill level and the potential to be a top line forward, and that player is Andrei Kotsitsyn. By the time he IS an NHLer I might learn how to spell his name. I swear, everytime I spell it I spell it a different way.
New Jersey: I have to take Martin Brodeur. He is too good to not take him.
New York Islanders: Came down to Blake or Scatchard, but I'm going to take Scatchard, one of the most underrated players in the league.
New York Rangers: Let's go with Fedor Tyutin. Solid young prospect.
Ottawa, hard to argue with the talent level of this team, but I'm going to take a MONSTER, Zdeno Chara.
Philadelphia: Branko Radovejovic. (Did I spell it right?) I was impressed with his play in the playoffs, and he get's a spot on my team.
Pheonix: Ladislav Nagy. The guy's got unbelievable talent. Liked the guy ever since he lit up the Q in my first year as a 'true' Moosehead fan.
San Jose: Scott Hannan. He just sticks out at me as a guy who's screaming 'PICK ME, PICK ME!!' Solid all around defenceman.
St. Louis: I'd take Tkachuk if it wasn't for his injuries, so I'll go with Marek Schwarz. I do need a goalie prospect, after all. The guy can do the splits with EASE!
Tampa Bay: John Grahme. The best back-up in the league, really completes my team
Toronto: Tie Domi. I've found that 5th guy!! Ahhhh.
Vancouver: Matt Cooke. Excellent at....everything!
Washington: I can't not take Alexander Ovechkin. He is NHL ready NOW.
The lines look like this:
Heatley / Sakic / Gaborik
Nagy / Bergeron / Ovechkin
Smyth / Ruutu / Cole
Tootoo / Avery / Domi
Anaheim - Andy McDonald
Atlanta - Kari Lehtonen
Boston - Nicholas Boynton
Buffalo - Mike Grier
Calgary - Jordan Leopold
Carolina - Josef Vasicek
Chicago - Tuomo Ruutu
Colorado - Joe Sakic
Columbus - Nikolai Zherdev
Dallas - Richard Matvichuk
Detroit - Kirk Maltby
Edmonton - Eric Brewer
Florida - Roberto Luongo
Los Angeles - Mattias Norstrom
Minnesota - Nick Schultz
Montreal - Yanic Perrault
Nashville - Scottie Upshall
New Jersey - Scott Niedermayer
New York Islanders - Mike Peca
New York Rangers - Dan Blackburn
Ottawa - Jason Spezza
Philadelphia - Michael Handzus
Phoenix - Shane Doan
Pittsburgh - Kris Beech
San Jose - Brad Stuart
St. Louis - Mike Sillinger
Tampa Bay - Brad Richards
Toronto - Darcy Tucker
Vancouver - Matt Cooke
Washington - Brenden Witt
Anaheim: Sykora-A perfect winger who can score on the first line.
Atlanta: Nurminem-Back up goalie who can play No.1a when asked.
Boston: Thornton-The perfect playmaker.
Buffalo: Drury-A great #2 center.
Calgary: Yelle-Great defensively
Carolina: Adams-One of the best fourth liners.
Chicago: Ruutu-Great scorer.
Colorado: Tanguay-Playmaker with a scoring touch.
Columbus: Vyborny-Love the guy!
Dallas: Morrow-A warrior who can do it all.
Detroit: Maltby-One of the best third liners, although he’s going to play on the fourth.
Edmonton: Schremp- Need prospect
Florida: Luongo-One of the best in the game.
Los Angeles: Norstrom-Great defensively.
Minnesota: Walz-What more can you ask from him?
Nashville: Hartnell-Just a great talented kid!
Montreal: Rivet-Solid defensively.
New Jersey: Rafalski-Great two defender.
New York Islanders: Nilsson-Prospect.
New York Rangers: Montoya-Prospect.
Ottawa: Langfeld-Reserve forward.
Pittsburgh: Bradley-Reserve forward.
Pheonix: Ference- Solid in the defensive zone.
San Jose: Kaspar-Prospect.
St. Louis: Schwarz-Prospect.
Vancouver: Ohlund-Best Canucks defenseman and is just a great person.
Washington: Doig-My #6 defender.
Atlanta Thrashers = Kari Lehtonen
Anaheim Mighty Ducks = Sergei Fedorov
Boston Bruins = Patrice Bergeron
Chicago Blackhawks = Tuomo Ruutu
Buffalo Sabres = Afinogenov
Columbus Blue Jackets = Zherdev
Carolina Hurricanes = Staal
San Jose Sharks = Cheechoo
Florida Panthers = Bouwmeester
Los Angeles Kings = Frolov
Montreal Canadiens = Ryder
Nashville Predators = Zidlicky
New Jersey Devils = Niedermeyer
Vancouver Canucks = Naslund
New York Islanders = Trent Hunter
Calgary Flames = Iginla
New York Rangers = Kasparaitis
Edmonton Oilers = Brewer
Ottawa Senators = Hossa
St. Louis Blues = Jackman
Philadelphia Flyers = Kim Johnson
Colorado Avalanche = Forsberg
Pittsburgh Penguins = Fleury
Minnesota Wild = Gaborik
Tampa Bay Lightning = Richards
Phoenix Coyotes = Nagy
Toronto Maple Leafs = NONE
Detroit Red Wings = Henrik Zetterberg
Washington Capitals = Ovechkin
Dallas Stars = Morrow
Atlanta Thrashers - Ilya Kovalchuk
Anaheim Mighty Ducks - Joffrey Lupul
Boston Bruins - Joe Thornton
Chicago Blackhawks - Mark Bell
Buffalo Sabres - Daniel Briere
Columbus Blue Jackets - Rostislav Klesla
Carolina Hurricanes - Erik Cole
San Jose Sharks - Scott Hannan
Florida Panthers - Jay Bouwmeester
Los Angeles Kings - Sean Avery
Montreal Canadiens - Jose Theodore
Nashville Predators - Marek Zidlicky
New Jersey Devils - Scott Stevens
Vancouver Canucks - Markus Naslund
New York Islanders - Rick Dipietro
Calgary Flames - Robyn Regehr
New York Rangers - Jamie Lundmark
Edmonton Oilers - Ryan Smyth
Ottawa Senators - Zdeno Chara
St. Louis Blues - Keith Tkachuk
Philadelphia Flyers - Keith Primeau
Colorado Avalanche - John Michael Liles
Pittsburgh Penguins - Brooks Orpik
Minnesota Wild - Marian Gaborik
Tampa Bay Lightning - Fredrik Modin
Phoenix Coyotes - Shane Doan
Toronto Maple Leafs - Darcy Tucker
Detroit Red Wings - Jiri Fischer
Washington Capitals - Alexander Semin
Dallas Stars - Steve Ott
The main team has a good mix of seasoned veterans (Stevens, Tkachuk, Naslund) and a great mix of young superstars (Thornton, Smyth, Kovalchuk, Modin, Gaborik.) The farm team has great NHLers who are a bit too young for the full time duty, although those lines would look great on any NHL team.