Originally written on Nightmare on Helm Street  |  Last updated 11/10/14

DETROIT - NOVEMBER 03: Dan Cleary #11 of the Detroit Red Wings looks on from the bench while playing the Boston Bruins on November 3, 2009 at Joe Louis Arena in Detroit, Michigan. Detroit won the game 2-0. (Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)

Despite all the talk about Zetterberg, Ericsson, and Conklin struggling this year, to me one player has stood out as being especially terrible: Dan Cleary.   He’s been on the top two lines for the entire first two months of the season and had a paltry six points going into Saturday’s game.  He’s a team worst -3 and has what appears to my eyes to be million turnovers.   He’s looked behind this entire time, confused, and just plain bad.   I truly believe that he’s kept Datsyuk down.

I'm not all down on Dan, make the jump for the rest.

Now don’t get me wrong, I love Cleary.   His hard working, grinding, never give up attitude is exactly what the Wings need.   Plus, he can step in as a scorer, which is a great ability to have.

But while he can step in as a scorer, that doesn’t mean he should.  He’s a grinder, a hard working 3rd liner.  He’s not pretty, he’s not that creative.  He can’t keep up with the Datsyuk and Zetterbergs of the world.  Bertuzzi and Filppula know how to, but Cleary doesn’t think like that.  When he tries to be something he’s not, that’s when he’s going to struggle.


I loved the third line on Saturday.  Cleary, Helm, and Eaves are all hard working grinders who can occasionally put the puck in the net.  This was the first time I saw the Dan Cleary we all knew from the past few years.   He looked confident, strong and effective.  The line buzzed all night and

It’s a damn shame that Eaves was hurt, but I think Brunnstrom would fit well into his place.  Emmerton doesn’t bring the same offensive touch that we need in a third liner.   But all I know is that I hope the idea for the lines stays the same.  Cleary is a third liner and it needs to stay that way until absolutely necessary.

GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Aaron Rodgers wins NFL MVP

VCU G Briante Weber suffers major knee injury in loss

Short selling leaves hundreds of fans without S.B. tickets

Hamilton, Edmonds' spouses to appear on 'Real Housewives'

Ha Ha Clinton-Dix trolls LSU over Kevin Steele hire

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Jerome Bettis elected to Pro Football Hall of Fame

Report: Duncan suing financial adviser, lost $20 million

Bret Bielema wanted Dolphins to draft Russell Wilson early

Nick Diaz apologizes to fans for skipping open workout

NFLPA President compares Goodell to a 2-year-old

NFL explains how Super Bowl balls will be prepped

2015 Pro Football Hall of Fame class announced

Anderson Silva beats Nick Diaz in return to octagon

WATCH: 'SNL' mocks Super Bowl

Sabres had a horrific month of January

Ole Miss uses Katy Perry as prop in recruiting

PHOTO: Ezekiel Elliott gets new national title tattoo

WATCH: Rondo takes brutal knee to face from teammate

Pig auctioned off at halftime of college basketball game

Should the Super Bowl be played on a Saturday?

Underwear company shows support for Marshawn Lynch

WATCH: WVU player flips opponent the double-bird

Five NFL players who could be cap casualties in 2015

NHL News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

2015 Hall of Fame class announced

Aaron Rodgers wins NFL MVP

Tim Duncan suing financial adviser?

Five likely cap casualties of 2015

Making the case for NFL co-MVPs

WATCH: Tom Brady sings about balls

Missy Elliott to join Katy Perry at SB?

Obama zings Pats over Deflate-gate

Each major conference's POY candidates

Super Bowl XLIX preview and predictions: Patriots vs. Seahawks

The 13 things we want to see in Super Bowl XLIX

49 Stops to Super Bowl XLIX

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.