Henrik Sedin shows leadership, helps enhance tanking by missing 2 weeks

Dimitri Filipovic
March 24 2014 06:27PM

iHsqSaxcc6lly

That was from Sunday night via our GIF guy Schneider's Teeth, during the 2nd period of their 4-2 victory over the Buffalo Sabres which in essence extended the "they're still alive!" discussion for another couple of days. 

Unfortunately, that belief - which was really being kept afloat by only the utmost of optimists to begin with - lasted for less than 24 hours. News broke this afternoon that Henrik Sedin will be put on the shelf for ~2 weeks, as per reported by Vancouver Canucks beat reporter TVA Sports' Renaud Lavoie.

Nail, meet the coffin.. for the final time in 2013-14.

In reality the Canucks would've needed the biggest of miracles of all miracles to sneak into the playoff picture over these final couple of weeks. Their odds were 2.8% following last night's game, and while they'll still technically remain at that 2.8% even after the announcement of this news, that's all it is -- a technicality.

We hadn't seen Henrik Sedin fail to suit up for a regular season game in a long time heading into this season, but his ironman streak finally ended at 689 games back in January after the fractured ribs he suffered at the hands of Martin Hanzal became too much to handle. 

With the Captain out of action, anyone that somehow still had their doubts quickly came to the realization that he was easily the team's most valuable player. What we saw without him down the middle was a disorganized, helter skelter squad that quite frankly looked miserable and lost. 

He essentially missed 10 games leading up to the Olympics (and yes, I'm counting the 2 games he tried to come back and play in, because he was a shell of himself) and during that time the Canucks went 2-8, getting outscored by a 33-19 margin. 

The shame of it all is that he'd actually been playing quite well next to Nicklas Jensen, propping the young prospect forward up and making him unquestionably look far better than he actually is. I'll be curious to see how Jensen is able to hold up without his blankie (he has spent just 17:03 of his 100+ minutes this year without him). 

But Jensen surely won't be the only one to struggle without Henrik around, I'd imagine. The Vancouver Canucks as a team will struggle to win any of their remaining 9 games, which isn't the worst thing in the world. The Devils and Jets are both within striking distance of them in the standings, and it would behoove them to lose a couple of games and increase their chances of landing a useful asset at the draft. 

In the meantime, Canucks games will be a tough watch.. but we're used to that by now.

7482b25b962fb1661ea9028fb4e0db36
Dimitri Filipovic writes about hockey on the internet, and is the Managing Editor of Canucks Army. You can follow him on Twitter @DimFilipovic, and email him at dimitri.filipovic@gmail.com.
Avatar
#1 NM00
March 24 2014, 08:27PM
Trash it!
11
trashes
Props
8
props

On the bright side, another chance for Gillis to acquire a checker via the draft.

Perhaps we'll finally see his overager philosophy come to full fruition with a 20 year selected with a top 14 pick...

Avatar
#2 Austin Wallace
March 24 2014, 06:47PM
Trash it!
7
trashes
Props
3
props

What would happen if they won out for the 8th seed? They shouldn't (in both senses of the word), and they won't... But this is a game of chance. Anything can happen over a 10 game sample.

Avatar
#3 5minutesthebox
March 24 2014, 10:37PM
Trash it!
7
trashes
Props
3
props

Soooo...you really are trying to contribute the success of Jensen to the play of Henrik and Burr? Two players who coincidentally struggled right until the moment that Jensen joined that line? All while playing against the oppositions best defenders. Certainly playing with Henrik has helped him but Jensens play brought that line back to life from the dead.

Avatar
#4 Jamie E
March 24 2014, 07:58PM
Trash it!
6
trashes
Props
11
props

Perhaps they should just take Jensen out back of the arena and put a bullet in him. That make you happy?

Avatar
#5 antro
March 24 2014, 08:00PM
Trash it!
6
trashes
Props
7
props

2 things:

First, I meant to say that your new feature of the gifs during games is *awesome* (although, it'd be nice if they didn't play automatically for those of us checking on mobile devices).

Second, at what point do we say that Martin Hanzal's period back in January may have been the single most significant thing to put the Canucks out of the playoffs? (Not the only thing, but maybe the one that stands out the most.) Didn't he also hurt Santorelli in the same period, and somebody else? If Torts gets fired, does he hire Booth to hunt Hanzal down? On the other hand, if the Canucks get a good young forward out of this draft, maybe he did the Canucks a favour?

Avatar
#6 andyg
March 24 2014, 09:45PM
Trash it!
5
trashes
Props
9
props
NM00 wrote:

On the bright side, another chance for Gillis to acquire a checker via the draft.

Perhaps we'll finally see his overager philosophy come to full fruition with a 20 year selected with a top 14 pick...

So why don't you tell us all who you would take in this years draft.

Avatar
#7 NM00
March 25 2014, 11:06AM
Trash it!
5
trashes
Props
3
props

@5minutesinthebox

The guy isn't even averaging 2 shots a game playing 18 minutes with Vancouver's best player.

Is this your first season watching professional hockey?

Guys go on (unsustainable) streaks all the time...

Avatar
#8 NM00
March 25 2014, 12:09PM
Trash it!
5
trashes
Props
3
props

@Jamie E

Ask me again closer to the draft once we know where Vancouver is picking and who will realistically be in that area.

But I can tell you I'm perfectly comfortable taking on more risk (i.e. Nichushkin) and would pass on players with theoretical high floors (i.e. Horvat)...

Avatar
#9 NM00
March 25 2014, 10:57AM
Trash it!
4
trashes
Props
3
props

@andyg

Reinhart or Bennett...

Not that they will slip to Vancouver territory of course.

Unlike Gillis or JP Ricciardi, though, I'm far more interested in ceiling than floor.

Late rotation starters/relievers are not difficult to find via trade/free agency.

Avatar
#10 5minutesinthebox
March 25 2014, 10:59AM
Trash it!
4
trashes
Props
2
props

@Lemming

I'm not the one living in the dark of my own rectum. Burrows hadn't scored the entire season , and Henrik hadn't made anyone any better all season, and all of the sudden they find their games...at the exact time that Jensen in slotted in.

Luck does not put a player in position to score and luck does not put the puck into the net repeatedly with a deadly wrist shot. Are his numbers maintainable? No, likely not, but since no other player has performed well on that line all season pardon me if I.see the reason that line has come to life being the addition of a skilled young forward with youthful energy. But yeah that's just a coincidence.

Avatar
#12 Drams
March 24 2014, 09:57PM
Trash it!
3
trashes
Props
5
props

@NM00

No. Just no. Please No.

Avatar
#13 Lemming
March 24 2014, 10:55PM
Trash it!
3
trashes
Props
3
props

@5minutesthebox

Jensen had a PDO of like 111.5 or something ridiculous like that.

His scoring was largely luck based, though he did seem to get a bunch of good chances, that's not particularly new for these Canucks. Some of the chances going in is, and it's pretty obvious he was pretty lucky.

Pull your head out of your ass. I'm not saying he's bad or anything, but he's not the reason Henrik and Burrows, two prolific scorers for many, many years, are scoring. Regression to the mean is.

Avatar
#14 NM00
March 25 2014, 10:59AM
Trash it!
3
trashes
Props
7
props

@PB

I'm probably in the minority here, but I'd rather not see Booth bought out.

Gillis is probably going to get one final kick at the can in 2014-2015 and the last thing this team needs is another bad contract or two for the next GM.

When the Canucks miss the playoffs next year and this management team is finally gassed, Booth can leave at the same time...

Avatar
#15 Senrik Hedin
March 25 2014, 11:30AM
Trash it!
3
trashes
Props
2
props

@Jamie E

i think nm00 only comments about draft picks AFTER the draft.

anyways, if we're picking 7-10 range, maybe nylander. this year's class has significant drop after ekblad and reinhart. bennett, dal colle, draisatl, ritchie should follow. i also like ehlers alot. would not mind adding ehlers to our mix of prospects at all.

Avatar
#16 NM00
March 25 2014, 12:10PM
Trash it!
3
trashes
Props
4
props
Senrik Hedin wrote:

@Jamie E

i think nm00 only comments about draft picks AFTER the draft.

anyways, if we're picking 7-10 range, maybe nylander. this year's class has significant drop after ekblad and reinhart. bennett, dal colle, draisatl, ritchie should follow. i also like ehlers alot. would not mind adding ehlers to our mix of prospects at all.

And I'm sure you're basing this on entirely logical reasons as opposed to your own delusions...

Avatar
#17 Drams
March 25 2014, 02:02PM
Trash it!
3
trashes
Props
1
props

Too early to talk about draft picks. There, unfortunately, will be plenty of time to talk about this soon enough.

I can't believe I'm saying this but I don't think Booth should be bought out either. Heck, if he continues to play the way he does I'd sign him the year after for about $2M if possible.

On another note is a package of Edler (assuming he waives his NTC), Hansen, Schroeder + a prospect for Shea Weber wishful thinking on my part?

Avatar
#18 andyg
March 25 2014, 06:35PM
Trash it!
3
trashes
Props
0
props

@NM00

Who would you pick between 8 and 13?

As you said they will not drop to us. Edmonton got the ceiling route and look how that is working.

Avatar
#19 JFR
March 25 2014, 06:53PM
Trash it!
3
trashes
Props
1
props
argoleas wrote:

I have to agree with you there about Booth. At this point it does not make sense to turf him. The main reasons to get rid of him would be:

- cap relief - create spot for younger player

Canucks will not have cap issues next year, even after signing RFAs to better contracts. No Canuck prospect is ready to actually take Booth's spot next year, and swallowing 2M+ of his contract is not something that the owner will agree to. Simply put, there is no cost saving here, since he would then need to be replaced with a cheaper version of Booth.

But I dont see this team going into 2014-2015 as being their 'last shot' before major changes. Seems to me that they are going the SJS route here, slowly replacing older players with younger ones, which may include that Kesler trade, and letting any one of their NTC contracts go if so requested. As such, I think there is general agreement between ownership, GM, and coach as to what will happen for the next few years. Unless something drastic happens next year, I dont see the team owner swallowing MG and JT contracts.

One thing I hope not to see, as you allude to, is more bad contracts. I think it makes more sense for the team to be thinking less of getting old UFAs (like Sundin), and growing younger from within and via trades (like getting Matthias). We will probably see this with the Kesler trade coming this summer.

Also seems that Schroeder's days as a Canuck are over.

This is a ridiculous thought process because as an owner of any business, you want your employees to be able to earn the wage that they are paid. If anyone thinks that Booth is earning his 4.5 mil then they are blind dumb or both.

In a salary cap sport the team has to maximize it's salary and getting rid of Booth should be priority #1. that 4.5 could be used for 1 player or 2 effective players. For fans to effectively be rooting for a bloated payroll and a tank next yer is just too much. Guess watching the Oilers and their decade long tank is quite satisfying.... actually the post are probably Oilers fans that hve nothing better to do.

Kassian and Jensen give the Canucks two forwards that have alot of youth and upside along with Shinkaruk and Horvat. Corrado is a guy that can play solid NHL mi nutes, which gives the Canucks flexibility from a trade stand point.... then the Sal cap, that some fans want to bloat and tank.

This may not be the cream of all FA classes but there are guys that can help the Canucks. Vanek and Callahan would each look good on the Sedins and kessler lines. Vanek would be the first true goal scorer that the Twins didnt have to create and Callahan would be a gritty guy to stick next to Kess and would wear down alot of opposing teams.

Not saying they will go after both or either, but there are options and the positive turn begins with a couple of guys from the system growing into their roles. So go back to the Oilers page and cheer on another 1st overall bust.

Avatar
#20 andyg
March 25 2014, 09:29PM
Trash it!
3
trashes
Props
0
props

Gaunce had a 3 point night last night. Horvat had 4 points and Cassel 3 tonight.

Any player can get hot at the right time and have a great play off run. Being able to consistently raise the level of your play when it counts is different. This play off year will tell a lot about both Horvat and Gaunce.

Avatar
#21 5minutesinhebox
March 25 2014, 10:56PM
Trash it!
3
trashes
Props
2
props
Dimitri Filipovic wrote:

I mean.. we have quite a large sample size of evidence that Henrik Sedin makes players look significantly better than they actually are without him. So yes, I am saying that.

We also have a large sample size of this entire season where Henrik has been unable to improve the play of anyone he has played with, that is until Jensen.

Avatar
#22 5mintuesinthebox
March 25 2014, 11:16PM
Trash it!
3
trashes
Props
4
props
NM00 wrote:

The guy isn't even averaging 2 shots a game playing 18 minutes with Vancouver's best player.

Is this your first season watching professional hockey?

Guys go on (unsustainable) streaks all the time...

Being Vancouvers best player this season really isnt saying a whole lot, is it?

I blatantly said his current streak was not maintainable. So if my ability to understand professional hockey is anything like your ability to comprehend english, I suppose I should watch curling and you should stick to books with pretty pictures.

Guys do go on streaks all the time, but isnt it fascinating that no one has had one of those streaks while playing with Henrik pretty much all season long? Isnt Henrik on a streak of his own. 1g 5a in the last 7 games. 0g 0a in the 12 games prior to that. Burrows, just 2a in last 25 games, no goals all season. 5g 4s in the last 7 games. "Coincidentally" both of those streaks start the 2nd game of Jensen being slotted in on the first line.

Im not saying that Jensen is the savior of this team, but the proof is undeniable, he brought that line to life, and in turn actually breathed some life into a team that should have already died.

Avatar
#23 argoleas
March 24 2014, 10:55PM
Trash it!
2
trashes
Props
1
props
5minutesthebox wrote:

Soooo...you really are trying to contribute the success of Jensen to the play of Henrik and Burr? Two players who coincidentally struggled right until the moment that Jensen joined that line? All while playing against the oppositions best defenders. Certainly playing with Henrik has helped him but Jensens play brought that line back to life from the dead.

That is a good way of looking at it, and we will have ample demonstration of the plausibility of this now that he will have two new line-mates.

Avatar
#25 Drams
March 25 2014, 02:07PM
Trash it!
2
trashes
Props
1
props

@Senrik Hedin

Nylander, the next Anton Rodin perhaps?

Avatar
#26 Daniel
March 25 2014, 08:06PM
Trash it!
2
trashes
Props
5
props

Hey Canadian hockey fans from across the country, welcome to Canucks Army. Here, we talk about the Canucks, except we don't talk about any of the real problems, like the missing Sedins, and Burrows and the god awful D, Kesler the old and the rest of the useless cougars on this team.

Now let's turn our attention on the new coach. We need to fire him because he doesn't get a free pass. Free passes are handed out to the sisters, kesler, and edler. If any coach can't coach this group of overpaid quitters, then he needs to go. Screw accountability, we are all about the country club lifestyle, seeing as how everyone in the league takes us so seriously. Just a couple of more NTC for the other sacks of crap here and next year the cup will finally come. We will keep doing exactly what we've been doing for the last 44 years because that's what has worked. 2 presidents cups in a weak division tells me that I'm right. Who needs race horses when you have donkeys on your team, right?

Avatar
#27 PB
March 25 2014, 08:21AM
Trash it!
1
trashes
Props
5
props

At this point the only thing I am really taking pleasure in from hockey is watching the Leafs struggle to the finish line, either to not make it in or to get slaughtered by Boston or Pittsburgh in the first round. Canucks wins (or better hard fought losses) are just gravy. I'd prefer to see Booth (buyout) and Kesler (trade) not get hurt in the meantime and to see the audition of Jensen, Kassian, and Lack continue.

And for the love of god please play Markstrom. In a pointless end of the season that would at least make some sense. Well except to the strategy machine Tortorella.

Avatar
#28 Jamie E
March 25 2014, 11:06AM
Trash it!
1
trashes
Props
1
props
NM00 wrote:

Reinhart or Bennett...

Not that they will slip to Vancouver territory of course.

Unlike Gillis or JP Ricciardi, though, I'm far more interested in ceiling than floor.

Late rotation starters/relievers are not difficult to find via trade/free agency.

Not that it's your job to draft players for the Vancouver Canucks, but if you're going to rise to the challenge of indicating who you would draft, picking two players who the Canucks can't draft because they are almost certain to go in the top 5 isn't that stellar a response.

There are usually good players available in the top 5.

Given that we're likely in the 7-10 range, who would you pick that might actually be available there?

Avatar
#29 argoleas
March 25 2014, 02:51PM
Trash it!
1
trashes
Props
2
props
NM00 wrote:

I'm probably in the minority here, but I'd rather not see Booth bought out.

Gillis is probably going to get one final kick at the can in 2014-2015 and the last thing this team needs is another bad contract or two for the next GM.

When the Canucks miss the playoffs next year and this management team is finally gassed, Booth can leave at the same time...

I have to agree with you there about Booth. At this point it does not make sense to turf him. The main reasons to get rid of him would be:

- cap relief - create spot for younger player

Canucks will not have cap issues next year, even after signing RFAs to better contracts. No Canuck prospect is ready to actually take Booth's spot next year, and swallowing 2M+ of his contract is not something that the owner will agree to. Simply put, there is no cost saving here, since he would then need to be replaced with a cheaper version of Booth.

But I dont see this team going into 2014-2015 as being their 'last shot' before major changes. Seems to me that they are going the SJS route here, slowly replacing older players with younger ones, which may include that Kesler trade, and letting any one of their NTC contracts go if so requested. As such, I think there is general agreement between ownership, GM, and coach as to what will happen for the next few years. Unless something drastic happens next year, I dont see the team owner swallowing MG and JT contracts.

One thing I hope not to see, as you allude to, is more bad contracts. I think it makes more sense for the team to be thinking less of getting old UFAs (like Sundin), and growing younger from within and via trades (like getting Matthias). We will probably see this with the Kesler trade coming this summer.

Also seems that Schroeder's days as a Canuck are over.

Avatar
#30 PB
March 25 2014, 03:16PM
Trash it!
1
trashes
Props
1
props

@NM00

No, I think I agree with that. Booth looks as bad as he does due to injuries, mis-use, and of course the hefty contract. I suppose on the last year with the cap rising it won't look as bad (I mean hell at least we're not paying Clarkson for the next bunch of years). I would like to have the option of figuring out what makes the most sense. He's looked generally ok-to-decent, though of course without much production and playing well below his pay grade this season.

It saddens me but I think you're right this management team (and probably also Tortorella) are going to stick around next year and probably waste it for us. The apocalypse no longer seems nigh; to some extent I wish the collapse had happened in the last month -- more traumatic but perhaps more productive…now at least the end is inevitable and in weird ways less painful than a quick first round exit with expectations so low.

Avatar
#31 PB
March 25 2014, 03:16PM
Trash it!
1
trashes
Props
1
props

@NM00

No, I think I agree with that. Booth looks as bad as he does due to injuries, mis-use, and of course the hefty contract. I suppose on the last year with the cap rising it won't look as bad (I mean hell at least we're not paying Clarkson for the next bunch of years). I would like to have the option of figuring out what makes the most sense. He's looked generally ok-to-decent, though of course without much production and playing well below his pay grade this season.

It saddens me but I think you're right this management team (and probably also Tortorella) are going to stick around next year and probably waste it for us. The apocalypse no longer seems nigh; to some extent I wish the collapse had happened in the last month -- more traumatic but perhaps more productive…now at least the end is inevitable and in weird ways less painful than a quick first round exit with expectations so low.

Avatar
#32 JCDavies
March 25 2014, 03:47PM
Trash it!
1
trashes
Props
3
props

"It saddens me but I think you're right this management team (and probably also Tortorella) are going to stick around next year and probably waste it for us. The apocalypse no longer seems nigh; to some extent I wish the collapse had happened in the last month -- more traumatic but perhaps more productive…now at least the end is inevitable and in weird ways less painful than a quick first round exit with expectations so low."

I'm imagining this being read in the movie promo voice... and it's awesome.

Avatar
#33 PB
March 25 2014, 05:54PM
Trash it!
1
trashes
Props
2
props

@JCDavies

Over the top melodrama is a prerequisite to be a Canucks fan

Avatar
#34 PB
March 25 2014, 09:10PM
Trash it!
1
trashes
Props
2
props

@JFR

No part of what you've written makes sense if you believe your first paragraph. What business owner thinks an employee is earning their wage by not working at all? This is not to say that we shouldn't buy out booth just that your logic isn't exactly airtight...

Avatar
#35 JCDavies
March 25 2014, 11:43PM
Trash it!
1
trashes
Props
0
props

@PB

Haha, true.

Avatar
#36 Omar 49
March 26 2014, 11:09AM
Trash it!
1
trashes
Props
0
props

Two things. First, I'm surprised that a lot of the "experts" are down on Jensen. Sure, he might be on a hot streak and it's unrealistic to expect this to continue but before we relegate him to the 4th line maybe we should let him play out the rest of the season and then start making judgements. The guy is only 21. Second, for those people talking about keeping Booth, give you head a shake. He has been playing much better as of late but still can't put the puck in the net. If he played on the 2nd or 3rd line and scored occasionally then maybe. $4M is a lot of money to pay a 3rd-4th liner who doesn't score. If he would take a $2M pay cut, then maybe, but the money can be better spent elsewhere.

Avatar
#37 argoleas
March 26 2014, 12:48PM
Trash it!
1
trashes
Props
0
props
JFR wrote:

This is a ridiculous thought process because as an owner of any business, you want your employees to be able to earn the wage that they are paid. If anyone thinks that Booth is earning his 4.5 mil then they are blind dumb or both.

In a salary cap sport the team has to maximize it's salary and getting rid of Booth should be priority #1. that 4.5 could be used for 1 player or 2 effective players. For fans to effectively be rooting for a bloated payroll and a tank next yer is just too much. Guess watching the Oilers and their decade long tank is quite satisfying.... actually the post are probably Oilers fans that hve nothing better to do.

Kassian and Jensen give the Canucks two forwards that have alot of youth and upside along with Shinkaruk and Horvat. Corrado is a guy that can play solid NHL mi nutes, which gives the Canucks flexibility from a trade stand point.... then the Sal cap, that some fans want to bloat and tank.

This may not be the cream of all FA classes but there are guys that can help the Canucks. Vanek and Callahan would each look good on the Sedins and kessler lines. Vanek would be the first true goal scorer that the Twins didnt have to create and Callahan would be a gritty guy to stick next to Kess and would wear down alot of opposing teams.

Not saying they will go after both or either, but there are options and the positive turn begins with a couple of guys from the system growing into their roles. So go back to the Oilers page and cheer on another 1st overall bust.

I think you should go back and read what I wrote carefully. No one is talking about Booth playing his worth. The issue here is that there is nothing the canucks have that would replace him. Remember that with a buyout, you are automatically paying out 2M. So getting any player for that other 2.25M that plays at his level may not be so easy. So at this point it is easier to effectively treat his salary as 2.25M. And at this point I dont see any player in the farm system that is ready to take his spot.

You seem to also forget that the owner doesn't just like to burn money. Many teams do not max out their cap because they want to maintain flexibility, like St. Louis has done over the last few years so they can absorb conracts at the right moment. Do you see this team being competitive enough that they are such a contract away from winning? I dont. And remember, going after some additional pieces is how this team got Booth in the first place. He was supposed to be an upgrade. Or do you still dream of Clarkson? If the team is gung ho on getting a new free agent, then I can see them turfing Booth, but I just dont see that happening, for the reasons I just outlined. The team will absolutely not go for Vanek or anyone else. The FA contracts are insane, and do not justify their costs. That is a terrible way to retool. Again, Clarkson comes to mind. What do you think Vanek will want? Do you seriously think this team is one FA away? Do you think he would want to come to a city where there is a clear need to retool with youth? This is not summer of 2010. Vanek will want an insane contract that only a few teams will be stupid enough to pay for. No thanx.

I'm optimistic about the team's youth, which seems to especially the ones you mentioned. But this team's mantra has been not to rush anyone, so no Horvat, Shinkaruk, Corrado (welll maybe him if there is space on the blue line, which I do not see), etc, next year. The team likes to take the Jensen approach, which is to allow him to develop and gain his confidence. If Jensen was promoted 2-3 months ago, he probably would not have been as good as he is now. I'm still very optimistic with Kassian and I like Matthias. We need more of that, not overpriced old FAs.

Based on your arguments, I would suggest you are the Oilers fan trying to push for steps that will clearly take Canucks into Calgary territory. Nice try.

Avatar
#38 Jamie E
March 26 2014, 03:03PM
Trash it!
1
trashes
Props
0
props

I have no problem with the team bringing in veteran free agents but I would personally set the following criteria.

1) No terms longer than two years for a player unless they are inarguably a top six forward still in their prime. So yes to a Callahan and likely no to Vanek/Cammaleri.

2) I would focus on older veterans with a bit of gas still in the tank who are willing to take 1-2 year terms. That way you aren't endlessly cock-blocking your own prospects and only to fill true holes.

Comments are closed for this article.