Late Night Headshots: June 26th

Thomas Drance
June 26 2013 12:17AM


The new Canucks brain trust.
Image via Jay Durant.

Today at Canucks Army we wondered whether or not the Canucks accidentally leaked their 2010 NHL Draft board, looked at the opening of the John Tortorella era in Vancouver, recapped both of his press conferences - the one with the fans, and the one with the media - and complimented the Canucks on their clever alt-media blitz.

More Canucks news - but who are we kidding, really it's just a recap of reactions to the John Tortorella hire - after the jump.

Neil Greenberg breaks down the impact that going from Alain Vigneault's zone-matching style, to John Tortorella's still pretty radical zone-matching schemes might have on the offensive output of the Sedin twins. He figures it might be worth a couple of points next season. [ESPN Insider]

Speaking of the offense the Sedin twins may lose from starting fewer shifts in the offensive end under John Tortorella, maybe they'll be able to make it up shorthanded. In a post-presser scrum with reporters, John Tortorella fleshed out the prospect of penalty-killing Sedin twins and called for a more vengeful Canucks team overall. Hi Keith! [The Province]

Tony Gallagher chimes in on the notion of the Sedin twins killing penalties and, oddly enough, I completely agree with the venerable king-maker:

Wonderful thought (the twins killing penalties), but it’s a study in stupidity. Consider they’re already going to be playing pre-season games, a full season (and these two rarely miss games) including a trip halfway around the world to play the Olympics on a team that already leads the league in travel. And then you expect them to take the dings that come with penalty-killing and still have something left for the playoffs at age 34. Good luck with that. [The Province]

Brad Ziemer digs into John Tortorella's past and manages to mine a variety of pretty amusing anecdotes. [Vancouver Sun]

Cam Charron writes that while change was the word of the day for the Canucks, Tortorella and Vigneault are tactically pretty similar coaches... [TSN.com]

Ryan Kesler came the closest of anyone to taking a shot, albeit a vague and indirect one, at Alain Vigneault: "I think (more accountability) is needed. We can hold ourserlves accountable in the room all we want but it becomes a reality when the coach does it." [Team 1040]

CDC put together a neat inforgraphic to visually communicate John Tortorella's record as a head-coach. [Canucks.com]

David Ebner on the "remorse and rehabilitation" of "that lunatic" John Tortorella. [Globe and Mail]

Elliot Pap got a choice quote from Mike Gillis explaining how John Tortorella impressed him enough to ultimately recieve a five year contract offer from the club:

“What impressed me the most was his attitude about coaching a team, how to bring it together, how to prepare it for the playoffs and how to prepare for specific opponents. I was really impressed with the level of detail. I was extremely impressed with the passion and the excitement that he had. As we got to know one another a little bit more, I became even more excited about how technically sound he was in his approach and how he felt the game should be played.” [Vancouver Sun]

Iain Macintyre was impressed by Tortorella's taking complete ownership of the "baggage" that accompanies him. [Vancouver Sun]

Chris Higgins tells Brad Ziemer that getting yelled at by John Tortorella is pretty much an inevitability when you play on his hockey club. [Vancouver Sun]

 Sean Gentille was struck by the softer side flashed by Stepford Tortorella or "New Torts" on Tuesday. [TSN.com]

Ed Wiles, who you might recall completely murdered the Canucks over the Tortorella hiring late last week, came away from Tortorella's first day on the job impressed. [The Province]

Bovada released their 2014 Stanley Cup odds on Tuesday, and priced out the Canucks at fourteen-to-one odds to raise Lord Stanley's mug next June. Also priced out at 14/1? The Los Angeles Kings. Priced out at 16/1? The San Jose Sharks. So yeah, Bovada might be overvaluing the Canucks. [Puck Daddy]

Finally allow me to close this especially long Headshots post with one final thought on the John Tortorella hire and all that transpired on Tuesday. Vancouver's PR team stickhandled a potential minefield expertly, and the social media team coordinated and executed an engaging, intelligent alternative media blitz. The roll out, combined with Tortorella's outstanding introductory performance, led naturally to the coach being warmly recieved by the media and by the majority of the fans whom I chatted with on-line today.

Those conversations, or at least the tenor of those conversations, were a significant change from the past few months (maybe even the past year). Canucks fans haven't "bought" much in the way of hope from the club they cheer for recently, after all. But for one day at least Tortorella was a breath of fresh air, and the usual fatalism and cynicism that characterizes so many Canucks fans was temporarily dropped. I guess this is what a "reset" feels like.

But, y'know, it's probably worth remembering that none of Tuesday's warm and fuzzy feelings will matter a fig if Mike Gillis can't perform salary cap surgery on his roster over the coming weeks. There's work to be done, Kesler insurance to add, an immovable contract to trade, and a reportedly leery ownership group to talk into committing a hefty bundle of their hard-earned treasure towards a compliance buyout (or preferably two).

So yeah, it's undeniable that John Tortorella came off well on Tuesday. But if the Canucks are to elevate themselves above the "pretender" status they've languished in since mid-January of 2012, well this better be just the beginning.

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Thomas Drance lives in Toronto, eats spicy food and writes about hockey. He is an NHL News Editor at theScore, the ex-managing editor of CanucksArmy.com and an opinionated blowhard to boot. You can follow him on twitter @thomasdrance.
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#1 Jyrki21
June 26 2013, 07:10AM
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I only watched about half of the press conference, but it sounded like a lot of meaningless talking points to me.

Unless fans were expecting an altercation with a reporter on Day 1, I don't quite get why everyone keeps saying their expectations were surpassed. It's a press conference -- you know what you're going to get.

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#2 dopeasballs
June 26 2013, 07:29AM
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Have you heard? Everyone's going crazy over #Luongo4Lecavalier! People are literally lighting objects on fire in excitement. You guys need to get in on the ground floor and start writing about everyone in this city's BURNING need to trade Luongo for Lecavalier! If you get on it fast everyone will think it was your idea! tinyurl.com/ntomc6c

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#3 Whatthe...
June 26 2013, 01:09PM
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The vancouver sport writers make me laugh...bashing Torts based on second hand info. I can just see their thought process, well he's not going to like us so I'm not going to like him first.

Tony G's analysis of the Sedin/PK issue is brutal. The twins have been asking to play on the PK for years...they obviously aren't going to be the go to guys but why not keep them in the game...team effort.

Thank God for blogs like Canucks Army, otherwise we would actually have to go to the Van Sun/Province for info.

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