CHICAGO — Pavel Datsyuk is one of the NHL’s most feared scorers, a wizard with the puck who is equally adept at setting up his teammates for easy plays. Jonathan Toews has at least 23 goals in each of his six seasons in the league, and Patrice Bergeron is one of the top offensive threats for one of the league’s best teams.
If you want to stop a Datsyuk, Toews or Bergeron, it sure helps to have a Datsyuk, Toews or Bergeron.
The three finalists for the Frank J. Selke Trophy for the NHL’s best defensive forward are still alive in the playoffs, and it’s no coincidence. The league’s top teams count on their forwards to come back and pressure the opponent’s top scorers, not only for defensive purposes but also to create chances on the other end.
“You need those kind of players to win, to be successful. Because you’re going to have times, usually half the time in your...