There’s no denying the top individuals on each team throughout the NHL are doing what they were meant to do. But what if they couldn’t or didn’t want to any more? I’m taking a look at the at the Stars top forward, Jamie Benn, top defenseman, Brenden Dillon, and starting goalie Kari Lehtonen to try and hash out what other professional sport they could succeed in if they had to.
Jamie Benn: the 24-year-old stands an impressive 6’2″ and weighs in at a solid 205; pretty much the perfect size for a strong hockey player. In attempting to place him in other popular sports though, that size may not be to his advantage. Looking at the NHL, it’s safe to say Benn is not big enough to be a running back, but his stature could make for a good wide receiver. He’s tall sure, but he’s not quite tall enough to be impressive in the NBA. His powerful shot could likely translate well into a powerful swing in baseball, but placing him on the field is a little harder. Benn has the intensity, passion and heart that could fit in well in the gyms of the UFC and MMA, and his stature and build could make for a pretty powerful fighter. And as with most hockey players, he’s a little too bulky for soccer. Could he fit in another sport? Probably, but really he should probably just stay in the NHL.
Brenden Dillon: At 6’4″ and 228, Dillon’s a big dude. Period. He’d have to slim down a bit, but can tap into some serious speed hinting at his potential to be a strong wide receiver. He’s not much taller than Benn, but every inch counts in basketball so there’s potential for a decent basketball career. He’s already proven his physicality, and likely has more endurance than a lot of current MMA fighters in his weight class, making him a pretty mentionable opponent. His stature and overall bulk could make him an excellent catcher, but his longer torso may provide too big a strike zone. Again, he’s likely a little too bulky for soccer. Could he fit in another sport? Definitely. It’d just be hard to pin down exactly which one he could be predicted to really excel at. He’s obviously on the right track in the NHL. No need to fix things that aren’t broken.
Kari Lehtonen: Similar in size to Dillon, Kari’s 6’4″ 217 frame makes him one big dude. Unlike Dillon though, Kari’s position on the ice requires a great deal of observational and reflexive skills. Lehtonen’s receptiveness and ability to react quickly last minute plays changes could give him a good foundation as a safety. Like Dillon, his decent height and general size could make for a promising basketball player, but he’d likely be a little slower when it comes to heading up and down the court. There’s no denying Lehtonen’s endurance and insane flexibility, which could make for a championship fighter in the octagon, but the back problems would likely nip that in the bud. His lightning-fast reflexes would make for a strong shortstop, and the flexibility aspect doesn’t hurt here either. He’s also a bit bulky for soccer but with his experience in the net in hockey, his goaltending skills could prove invaluable.
What do you think? If the team’s top performers could no longer participate in the NHL, where else could they succeed? What about any other members of the team?