September 26 2016 12:00PM
Image created by the great and wonderful Matt Henderson.
Well, we’re inching closer to the start of the hockey season, but before we get there, it’s time for the Big Unveiling of the full 2016 NHL Entry pGPS data set. I know. Try to contain your excitement.
Taking on the entire draft at once already produces a massive amount of information, but this year’s review is so replete with beautiful charts fashioned by our very own Petbugs, it would simply be outrageous to try to fit it into one article. That’s while we’ll be taking this journey one division at a time, with a league-wide overview at the end.
We’ll start with the Pacific Division and move east. No #eastcoastbias here! Why? Because it needed an arbitrary starting point and this endeavour originated in Vancouver. Plus, the Pacific has the highest volume of Nation Network affiliated teams, so they get preferential treatment I guess. Let’s dive in.
September 26 2016 11:00AM
Training camp is underway, which means we're at that time of year where we read far too much from lineup decisions and speculate on which fresh faces will force themselves into said lineup. This team's unclear if poorly communicated vision coupled with the number of players knocking on the NHL door's led to even more excitement, anticipation and general curiosity then there generally has been at this time in previous seasons.
Nowhere is this more apparent than on the Canucks third line. Enter the Canucks big ticket undrafted free agent, Troy Stecher.
September 24 2016 11:09PM
Photo Credit: Kevin Souza/USA TODAY SPORTS
Canada vs. Russia on a Saturday night. Can anything top that? Well, one could argue that a lot of things could in 2016. While the two giants comprised what used to be hockey's greatest international rivalry, today's game didn't carry that vibe. In fact, it didn't really carry much of a vibe; while the lead had a changeover that gave the illusion of competitiveness, Canada maintained a staggeringly lopsided level of control in a 5-3 win that felt even bigger.
September 24 2016 11:45AM
If we are honest, the idea of North America versus Canada had so much appeal that it took a day to get behind the idea of Canada versus Russia. Fortunately, the two nations have a lot of history on the ice that allows both sides to build up a good lather. Add to that the built-in Sidney Crosby—Alex Ovechkin rivalry, the fact Mike Babcock will want to announce his presence with authority to Russian coach Oleg Znarok (seriously, that is his name) and assistant Harijs Vitolins (really). It's tuques versus ushankas for the right to play Sweden or the Seven Nation Army.
September 24 2016 09:00AM
The World Cup of Hockey is in full swing, and people are actually watching. That’s nothing but good news for the NHL, who can line their banana stands with hundred of thousands of dollars in cash while giving cheeky looks to the IOC. Who needs who now?!
Anyways, the Canucks have sent their fair share of players to Toronto, and they’ve been performing admirably. However, the only thing that I’ve really seen come out of the WCH so far are a myriad of articles about how the sun is setting on the Sedins’ careers - particularly when it comes to international play. I can’t exactly tell them that they’re wrong, being the the twins are on the cusp of their 36th birthdays (which happen to be on the same day - what are the chances?!), and players are less likely to tax their bodies with extra curricular competition as they age.
So while this silly tournament is still topical, I thought I’d take a look at which Canucks might crack the rosters of the next World Cup of Hockey, now that Bettman and co. know that this money pinata has a few more whacks in it.