In the background I’m listening to TEAM 1040 streaming. It’s cold and snowy here in Calgary and the Flames players will have to wait for another shot at redeeming themselves next year and also waiting for the snow to dissipate so they can start their best impression of Tiger Woods.
Playoff opponent: LA KINGS (Season Series 3-1 Canucks)
I’ve said it once and I’ll say it again. It didn’t matter who the Canucks faced in the first round to me. All the sports networks mention how the Canucks avoided the Detroit Red Wings. To me the LA KINGS can be just as dangerous because they have nothing to lose; they are young and ready to take in the experience. Jonathan Quick will back stop the Kings and he will get his first glimpse of what it takes to be a NHL playoff goalie. I do like the fact that with all the travel the Canucks have done this season, this is a welcome opponent just for the fact that they will be in the same time zone. Anze Kopitar will carry the offensive load and I think that will be the key to the success of shutting any offensive attack the Kings have. Shut down their top player and the team loses confidence to score. Kopitar will get to know Ryan Kesler real well this series. All in all I see the Canucks winning this in 5 games.
We are one D-man injury away from total chaos. Elder, Bieska , Salo, Ehrhoff will have to stay healthy to give the Canucks and more importantly give Luongo a chance to be who he needs to be in the post season. The core D-men need to play smart and simple hockey. I miss Mitchell’s grit and his smart simplistic no non-sense hockey. With that being said guys like Rome, SOB, Baumer, Alberts need to reflect that simple hockey. No need to put points up or jump in the play. Their whole focus should just be to be a solid defender, to clear the puck and to make sure to relieve the pressure in the defensive zone when the pressure is on. I believe in this D core. Bieska is a -5 but, Edler, Salo & Ehroff are all plus’s. And the bottom 4 D-men are surprisingly +16. Simple, smart, decisive defensive hockey will keep this team out of trouble. I hope AV preaches this come Thursday.
Oh Captain My Captain!
Here is your clean slate Mr. Luongold. Yes the nation loves what you have done. But I and Kesler have put that day to rest. It is time for you get the wins. Somewhere I saw an interview and Roberto mentioned it wasn’t about stats anymore but wins. As long as we win four out of seven games in four series is what he is focused on. I feel all Bobby Lui wanted was to get to this playoffs because somewhere deep down inside Lui can still hear the Chicago’s goal celebration and Patrick Kane back hand goal.
Yes he had a terrible season. But the standard for Luongo has been set so high how can we not be disappointed. Will Luongo show up? Will he return to form? Will AV shed some of the up tempo style to favour a more defensive style game in the playoffs?
Hank and Dank Sedin
Congrats to Henrik for winning the Art Ross. It makes me extremely proud to be a Vancouver Canuck Fan. It has been a hockey treat to watch these guys grow and develop to become elite players in the NHL. Last year Hank and Dank were point per game players. I believe they’ve shown up and will show up during the playoffs. Now that the 2nd and even the 3rd lines can score, I believe the pressure is off the twins. They won’t need to carry the load and be the ones to put the puck on the net. The only down side to winning the Art Ross would be that people would expect that Hank continues his dominance in the post season. Yes he should carry his stellar play. But I believe the playoffs are a tighter and more defensive game. Checking style players will hone in on star players and give them no space (ie. Kesler). But with that said, there are two players to watch with some sort of ESP to match. So I feel if you hone in on one, you’ll have to one lurking in the corner to put the puck in. This is the year Hank and Dank will become the playoff players we have all come to hope for.
Can people please coordinate what color Jersey we are to fill GM PLACE with? Blue, Green, White?