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Russia Celebrates Hall of Fame Selection of Red Wings Datsyuk

Swedes wonder when Zetterberg’s time to enshrine will come



Pavel Datsyuk, Red Wings
Red Wings legend Pavel Datsyuk is officially a Hall of Famer.

It was a day of celebration in the Russian hockey world as word was arriving about the induction of Detroit Red Wings icon Pavel Datsyuk into the Hockey Hall of Fame.

“Datsyuk is a great athlete,” former Russian national team coach Vyacheslav Bykov told Russian website Sport Express. Bykov spoke of the type of role model Datsyuk proved to be to youngsters in his homeland.

“A hockey player who, through his example and play, promoted graceful, creative and effective hockey. Several generations of boys, looking at his style and creativity, came to this sport,” Bykov said. “Players of this level bear a great responsibility in promoting sports and hockey in particular, since their example attracts young people to sports and Pavel fulfilled this mission with honor.”

Former Russian national team player Maxim Sushinksy was describing Datsyuk as a player without parallel.

“They decided to induct him into the Hockey Hall of Fame, and this is definitely a 100% hit,” Sushinsky said. “Only great players are brought in there, and Pavel deserves it. He won everything possible.

“Pavel is the champion of Russia, the winner of the Olympic Games and the World Championship, plus he has two victories in the Stanley Cup.”

What About Red Wings Zetterberg?

While Russians are exulting with joy, in hockey-mad Sweden they’re just getting madder. Several Swedes, including some legends of the game, find it perplexing how the Hall committee continues to overlook former Red Wings captain and 2008 Conn Smythe Trophy winner Henrik Zetterberg.

Former Vancouver Canucks star Henrik Sedin, an inductee with his twin brother Daniel in 2022. That was Zetterberg’s first year of Hall eligibility. Henrik Sedin wonders when Hank’s time to enshrine will arrive.

“(Zetterberg) has the merits of championship titles in the NHL, the Olympics and the World Cup,” Henrik Sedin told Gunnar Nordstrom of Swedish website Expressen. “In addition, he has a heavy individual award in the NHL with the Conn Smythe Trophy. But there are a number of different factors that come into play before the appointments.

“However, I think (Zetterberg’s time) will come in a few years from now.”