FanPost

Nucks Need an Enforcer - Who Can Skate/Agitate/Fight


There has been a lot of debate about what the Canucks need as far as a fighter, enforcer etc... and I think the conventional logic that they don't need a dedicated fighter is sound. Actually, its pretty normal. Many teams around the league are not dressing fighters for games - the Leafs, NY Rangers, NY Islanders, Flyers, Panthers, Canadiens, Red Wings... et al, don't dress a dedicated fighter. The concept of beating up someone who goes after one of your stars has been replaced with the concept of team toughness and having a physical, hard checking team. However, it cannot be denied that when guys like Eager, Carcillo, Thornton, Hordichuk, etc... are on the ice, the other team plays a little differently, the energy changes and there is a feeling that the guys on the ice are not going to get pushed around. The Nucks need someone who can hit, agitate and generally push some guys around - not necessarily fight, strictly. Case in point, the NY Islanders got their heads kicked in by the Pittsburgh Penguins last year - a demoralizing loss that saw 2 of their players concussed (a goalie get beat up) and the loss, though just a loss, was a demoralizing one that sapped the team. The next game the Islanders came out and met the Pen's head on, they stood up for themselves, checked with authority and turned their season around (or at least played much better in the stretch) - getting beaten on is demoralizing. It will take a toll on the Nucks. The Wings, Flyers, Panthers, their front line players are peskier, edgier than the Nucks, though not fighters. Franzen, Holmstrom, Bertuzzi, Cleary, even Datsyuk, play with more of an edge than the Sedins, Hansen, Hodgson... the Nucks need some real grit that can impose and intimidate other teams. Relying on the Power Play will work most of the time, but for the other times, the Nucks need some muscle.

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