When asked, "How do you write?" I invariably answer, "One word at a time," and the answer is invariably dismissed. But that is all it is. It sounds too simple to be true, but consider the Great Wall of China, if you will: one stone at a time, man. That's all. One stone at a time. But I've read you can see that motherfucker from space without a telescope."
That's Stephen King — arguably the greatest novelist of all-time — explaining his writing process in the preface to the extended version of The Stand, one of my favourite books of his. But what do writing and hockey have in common? Admittedly, not much, but if you're a fan of the Vancouver Canucks, the above quote probably doesn't sound completely foreign.
"One game at a time."
That is the mantra that Alain Vigneault and his players have been preaching from day one, and it's so oft-repeated that it is almost always followed by an eye-roll from the journalist or fan who hears it. The moral of the story, though — and what King is getting at above — is that small, seemingly insignificant things (such as words, or hockey games) can eventually add up to something amazing.
Like two straight Presidents' Trophies. Like franchise-record point totals. Like a slew of individual awards and achievements. But while those are great things, there's still some story left to be written, and tonight the Canucks write the first word.
Vancouver Canucks News & Notes
Yesterday's drama revolved around Daniel Sedin missing practice. He did skate with the extras afterwards, and AV insists there's been no setback. Even if there was, it couldn't have been serious, or else Daniel would have been nowhere near the ice. If he doesn't play Game 1, I'd expect him in Game 2. | The White Towel
After writing that, I just read iMac say basically the same thing. The Canucks are a deep enough team that they can survive without Daniel in the short-term. | VS
Our favourite Harrison Mooney spitballs on Playoff AV, awesome pump-up videos and the haters who are gonna hate. | PITB
Eric Duhatschek suggest that just maybe, two playoff goalies are better than one? He gets a great quote out of Keith Ballard: "I mean, we have two No. 1 centres; and I don't think we have a centre controversy." | G&M
Kevin Bieksa was a beast in last year's playoffs, and he's looking to find that gear again this year. | The Province
Brian Beitz offers the interesting idea that the Canucks need to be less "gritty" in the playoffs this year. He has a point — the Torres hit and the Rome hit were big turning points (going the wrong way) against the Hawks and Bruins. | Smug Nation
Looking for pump-up videos? j.Bowman is your man. | LoB
NHL Playoff News & Notes
Tonight's Game 1's: PITT vs. PHI at 4:30 PST on TSN, DET vs. NSH at 5:00 on CBC, and VAN vs. LAK at 7:30 on CBC.
Bovada has released their odds for the Stanley Cup Playoffs. | Sportsnet
You can watch a whole bunch of series previews on NHL.com, starting with the Red Wings vs. the Predators.
Here's the Western edition of HNIC's playoff preview show.