A phrase that describes the 2016-17 season for the Detroit Red Wings in so many ways. The franchise’s 25-year playoff streak is coming to an end. Their contending window is finally closing. Their veterans are regressing.
And their young, talented players have gone silent for much of the year. But the most curious disappearing act has to belong to Riley Sheahan.
The 25-year-old has had his share of ups and downs as a pro player (driving drunk is bad, kids), but this season is a remarkable new low: through 62 games, Sheahan has … no goals.
There’s no doubting Ho-Sang has had some maturity issues. He could’ve made the Islanders out of training camp last year if he hadn’t overslept and gotten immediately demoted. Questions about a player’s character don’t appear out of nowhere. Missteps have to happen along the line, and Ho-Sang (as a teenager) has had a few.
None of us hold up to scrutiny at that age. Or any age. Even you, computer commenter.
But let’s just shut up about Ho-Sang having the GALL to wear Lemieux’s number. Because, as he told NHL.com this week, he wears it as a reflection of his growth as a hockey player. Of his lessons learned.
“[Lemieux] had his ups, his downs in his career and he came back better. That’s just a tribute to the person that he is. That’s something that inspires me. And, on a regular basis, he had probably more hardship than most great players and he dealt with it, came back better. And that’s something that no one can ever take away from him, and for me, honestly, it’s something to look up to.”
By donning Lemieux’s number, Ho-Sang is literally putting a high standard for himself on his back every night. If that’s not respect, I don’t know what is. And coming from a young man under so much (somewhat undeserved) criticism, it’s worthy of your respect, too.