If this is the end for Marian Hossa potentially cut down at the end of his career by an unfortunate skin disorder that will at least force him to miss the 2017-18 season ‘ it’s impossible to imagine a more ill-befitting way for him to go out.
But this isn’t a story about that. Salary cap experts far more ingrained with knowledge of the minutiae of the NHL’s collective bargaining agreement can explain the fallout from an organizational perspective better. Rather, this is about the player, and what is shaping up to be an incredibly disheartening end of what is an undeniably Hall of Fame career. The phrase progressive skin disorder with side effects due to medication couldn’t contrast more with the elegant style of his game if it tried.
The play that stands out above all others as quintessential Hossa took place on Oct. 24, 2008 against his old team, Atlanta. Like many times before, Hossa, then a Detroit Red Wing, read a play at center-ice, and this time saw Thrashers’ defenseman Zach Bogosian confronted by Tomas Holmstrom. The Red Wings forward eventually got a piece of the puck and gently nudged it to Hossa, who was taking off at full speed down the ice.
P.K. Subban in his first Cup Final one year after his acrimonious trade out of Montreal. Peter Laviolette becoming the fourth coach in NHL history to lead three teams into the Final following runs with the 2005-06 Hurricanes (won Cup) and 2009-10 Flyers (lost Cup). Long-suffering veterans Pekka Rinne, Mike Fisher and Vernon Fiddler with a chance to finally hoist the Cup.
For now, though, Nashville has some planning to do. The land of honky tonks and country music is about to become the center of the hockey world.