The Grind Line is another famous line of the Detroit Red Wings. Formed in late 1997, it was originally comprised of Kirk Maltby (left wing), Kris Draper (center), and Joey Kocur (right wing). During 1997, this unlikely group helped lead the Wings to their first Stanley Cup in 42 years against the Philadelphia Flyers.
To many a fan's great disappointment, Kocur found himself on the short end of a serious injury during the 1997-98 campaign. The incomparable Darren McCarty took his place on the right side to form the second incarnation of this unit. Since the 1998-99 season, the Grind Line has been an on-again-off-again affair as the Wings tried to regroup during the dry years since the 1998 Cup. But after an sleepy start to the 2002 Stanley Cup Playoffs, Scotty Bowman reunited the line and it brought its usual flair (and winning results) to the game.
The Grind Line is known as a checking line. They provide muscle, grit, forechecking. They are not goal scorers, though they do chip in with timely goals. They are the hard checking, fast skating forwards that create a hard-to-contain forecheck that gives defensemen on the opposing team fits. Unlike most teams' checking lines, however, The Grind Line also kills penalties due to their great speed and smothering defensive attitudes.