Report: Canucks could open regular season with interim head coach

Thomas Drance
September 10 2015 05:37PM

Photo Credit: James Guillory/USA TODAY Sports

Vancouver Canucks head coach Willie Desjardins, a career bench boss, waited 57 years before he got the opportunity to open an NHL campaign as the top dog on an NHL coaching staff. Heading into his second season as an NHL head coach, it would appear that Desjardins may have to be patient once again.

The Canucks' 58-year-old bench boss is currently recovering from hip replacement surgery, which will cause him to miss this weekend's sure-to-be fascinating Young Stars Tournament in Penticton, B.C.. How much more time Desjardins' misses thereafter isn't clear at the moment.

On Wednesday the Canucks declared that Desjardins would be ready for the regular season opener on Oct. 7, and general manager Jim Benning indicated to the Vancouver Province's Jason Botchford that his head coach is expected to be in Prince George for the opening of training camp next week. Desjardins' expected presence at training camp and behind the bench for the season opener is far from a foregone conclusion though, according to a report from TSN 1040 host Matt Sekeres

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Chris Johnston on tanking, Puck Talks and why a Canucks rebuild is inevitable

Thomas Drance
September 10 2015 04:00PM

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Photo Credit: Bill Streicher/USA TODAY Sports

From dampened tracksuits to potentially disastrous predatory offer sheets that failed to account for a pretty important CBA article, Sportsnet reporter Chris Johnston has broken all kinds of colourful, interesting, and controversial stories in his career. 

This month Johnston has got a new sort of challenge though: tour the country and host four live hockey-talk shows in four different cities in four nights. It's called Puck Talks Live and it's coming to Vancouver! The event will take place at your favourite watering hole (the Pint, duh) on Friday, Sept. 18th and you can buy tickets here. For some reason (some reason that the Puck Talks crew is sure to regret), they've decided to invite me to be part of a panel. But really we'll all be there to hear Ray Ferraro spit some unvarnished truth. 

Anyway, we caught up with Chris to talk about why a rebuild in Vancouver is inevitable, why tanking doesn't work, and also about the upcoming Puck Talks Live event.

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Are the Sedins Worthy of the Hockey Hall of Fame?

Jeremy Davis
September 10 2015 03:00PM

It’s a question that you’ve heard before and undoubtedly one that you will hear again, especially as this decade comes to a close: are the Sedins worthy of induction into the Hockey Hall of Fame?

For me, the answer is a resounding yes, but last I checked, the Hall of Fame committee wasn’t putting a particularly high value on my opinion. So instead, I will use this lovely September day to provide a sample of the ever-mounting evidence that Daniel and Henrik Sedin are deserving of being immortalized in hockey’s greatest shrine.

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Get to Know a Prospect: Penticton Invitees

Josh W
September 10 2015 12:52PM

Last week, the Canucks released their roster for the Penticton Young Stars tournament.  The Jerk covered the news quite extensively , but now that some time has passed, we can dissect who has and hasn't been invited to the tournament.

You'll immediately notice that Vancouver's NCAA prospects aren't on the roster. Of course, this is because their chosen route prevents them from participating in professional events, but it's still a shame to not see the likes of Thatcher Demko, Brock Boeser and Mike Williamson in the lineup.

Nikita Tryamkin's absence can likely be explained by the KHL season already being underway.Curtis Valk was not invited, likely due to him being in the process of recovering from injury as he is still recovering from his injury that caused him to miss Prospect Camp. Dane Fox was invited, but Ludwig Blomstrand hasn't as he has fallen out of favour with Canucks management.  Mike Zalewski was invited despite not being re-signed to an NHL contract (but signed to an AHL SPC). Even the Comets' newly-siigned goalie Clay Witt was invited.

With all of that said, who are the new faces?

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Why the 2015 Young Stars Tournament Promises to be Fascinating

Carol Schram
September 10 2015 08:30AM

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Photo Credit: Bill Streicher/USA TODAY Sports

The hype is at an all-time high. Hotels in Penticton, B.C. are booked solid and the tickets have sold at a record-breaking pace for this weekend's 2015 Young Stars tournament. Always a big event in the Okanagan, Connor McDavid's NHL debut has caused fan interest to spike even higher than usual.

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