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Despite a relatively small 5-foot-11, 197-pound body, Datsyuk has been very durable during his nine-season career. This year, though, he played a career-low 56 games because of injuries after averaging 81 games the previous three seasons.

Red Wings coach Mike Babcock said the time Datsyuk missed is the only factor that could prevent him from a Selke four-peat.

“I think he’d win it hands down if he played all the games,” Babcock said.

Datsyuk was productive when he played _ 59 points _ in the fourth year of his seven-year deal worth nearly $47 million. He was as dazzling as ever, flashing skills Nicklas Lidstrom hasn’t seen anyone approach in the last two decades.

“The only guy close was Sergei Fedorov, who could fly and stick handle at the same time, but he didn’t have the slick stops and starts with the puck and two guys on his back like Pav,” Lidstrom said. “He’s so creative with the puck and he’s so sneaky without it.

“I don’t think there’s ever been anyone quite like him. He’s lot of fun to watch.”