I'm serious, I truly am sick of all the Hodgson talk on this site, to be honest, so allow me to post this here and ask you once again: Did the Canucks give Cody Hodgson a fair shot at making the team this season?
Mike posted a piece about this topic back on September 29th after Hodgson was sent back to Brampton, failing to secure a spot on the Canucks' roster and he included a poll that asked:Do you agree that cutting Cody Hodgson was the right move?
59% of readers said it was the right move.
30% said he was injured, but was ready for the bigs
9% said that they were surprised that the "G" in Cody's name was silent. I still laugh at that.
I will admit that I was one of the people who said and voted that Hodgson was NOT ready for the NHL. He sure as hell didn't look like he was ready. He had 2 points in 6 preseason games and looked like he was a step behind nearly everybody. However, what followed was a bunch of finger-pointing from Canucks' management and second-guessing from Cody Hodgson and his agent about his lingering back issues.
Mike Gillis said this about Hodgson:
"We’re going to do what’s in his best interest," Gillis said. "He’s going to let us know when he’s ready to play in this league and it’s up to him to be prepared and be able to compete at this level.
"There’s been a lot of players that have played really well in junior hockey that come into this league and they’re not prepared for it. And they tend to really suffer later on."
Alain Vigneault was more harsh with his wording:
"He just wasn’t ready," said Alain Vigneault. "We really believe this young man has a tremendous amount of upside but, at the end of the day, he didn’t show any signs that he was ready to play at this level. After analyzing it and talking about it, we felt the best thing for him was to go back to junior and his team." And in regards to Hodgson seeking another opinion on his back: "As far as I know, he has already had two opinions. He had an opinion back home from a specialist who gave the exact same report that our back specialist gave him. If he wants to get a third opinion, that's fine. I think Cody is a very young man who hasn't had a lot of disappointments throughout his life. He's probably having a tough time, personally, dealing with this one and trying to find a reason why it happened. We've all had times where we've encountered disappointment and tried to roll the (blame) in a different direction. We've all been through those things. Cody will learn from this."
Hodgson reportedly told Mike Gillis that he was "ready to play". He was cleared by Canucks doctors to do so. But when he was told he was not going to make the Canucks team, Hodgson went East to seek another opinion from a doc in Cleveland on his back. He was diagnosed with nerve damage, and has yet to play for his OHL team - the Battalions.
So what in the blue hell is going on here? Who's bullshitting who?
-Did Hodgson lie about being ready to play so that he could at least play some preseason games, and by god, prove that he belonged in the NHL?
-Were the Canucks' doctors wrong and the dudes at the Cleveland clinic correct about the injury?
-Should the Canucks have at least given Hodgson a 9-game try-out during the regular season after his back was healed and then made a decision? What or who would that have hurt?
-Do you sometimes wake up at night in a cold sweat wondering why the hell Kyle Wellwood is centering the 3rd line and Hodgson potentially isn't? Would we have been better off with Hodgson in the lineup over Wellwood in hindsight?
-Will Hodgson's return to the OHL impede his progress?
I'm leaning towards the Hodgson camp on this one, but how can I really be sure?
Please discuss this here, because like I said at the beginning of the post: I'm sick and tired of all the "what-if" talk. The answer to the Hodgson questions are not simple ones, whether you like it or not.