April 10 2012 12:17PM
Booth and Raymond work with Canucks skill coaches prior to today's practice.
Photo via David Ebner.
Yesterday, Daniel Sedin skated hard at Canucks practice, and it was revealed that he'd been skating in secret prior to that. That wasn't much of a surprise, if that had been Daniel's first exercise since being cleared to begin skating again, that would've been a massive violation of concussion protocol. It looks today, however, like Daniel Sedin has suffered yet another setback as he was absent from practice today.
Concussions are tricky, unpredictable things. Daniel's return to practice yesterday, and the pace he kept throughout the "zippy" hour long skate, had given us a sense of cautious optimism regarding his possibly prompt return to the lineup. With Daniel having suffered an apparent setback in the past twenty four hours, however, that optimism has quickly been replaced with the realization that, almost certainly, Daniel will miss at least the first game of the opening round series, and quite probably more.
With Daniel back out of the lineup, Vigneault has been forced to shuffle his top-six forward group: Mason Raymond has been bumped up to the top-line, and his role on the second line has been filled by Maxim Lapierre. Zack Kassian, who wore a grey "extras" jersey at yesterday's practice has slotted into Lapierre's spot on the fourth line alongside Byron Bitz and Manny Malhotra.
Click past the jump for a more thorough recap of the many mixed messages emanating out of today's Canucks practice.
April 10 2012 11:58AM
Let's see.. Defenceman scoring, tonnes of Canucks fans, only one Kings player in view ...
And this was the first Canucks/Kings picture I found. Yep, don't worry kids. they got this.
(Photo by Noah Graham/NHLI via Getty Images)
Thomas Drance, the fearless leader of our venerable blog, used his steadfast numbers to break down the Canucks and Kings series. He took off his Canucks hat to analyze the stats, he removed emotion and bias and determined that the Los Angeles Kings, by the underlying possession numbers, were downright frightening.
Now, it's pretty hard to argue with Thom's numbers, because he is damn good at breaking this stuff down to a level that even an idiot like me can understand. The only way to fight fire is to use fire. My fire consists of only a few stats, but plenty of yelling and arm waving and kicking things within my immediate vicinity.
Canucks fans are an irrational, emotional bunch, and so I shall placate our readers with a rebuttal of Thom's preview. Contrary to the predictions of the "advanced stats" dudes that there are plenty of reasons why the Canucks will this series.
Click past the jump, because I've got five of them.
April 10 2012 09:48AM
In the first round the Canucks will face an American born Vezina nominee goaltender with an unconventional style...
What can go wrong?
Throughout their mostly sordid history, the Canucks have been unable to buy a break. Now that Vancouver's hockey club ices a perennial power house, a team that has won two consecutive President's Trophies and nearly every individual award a player, General Manager and Head Coach can win - that streak of bad luck continues. Since the lockout, there have never been two more difficult eighth seeds than the 2010-11 Chicago Blackhawks, and the 2011-12 Los Angeles Kings. Of course, in the two seasons that the Canucks have a legitimate shot at hockey's holy grail, they're dealt an outrageously tough test right off the bat...
Yes, the Kings are that good. They may look like they're lacking in back-end depth (which is true), and certainly they've struggled to score goals this season, but the stew Daryl Sutter is brewing down in Hollywood still possesses some deadly ingredients.
Read past the jump for our detailed advanced stat preview...
April 09 2012 02:42PM
Apparently this is some guy trying to be the "biggest Canuck fan ever."
He's calling himself Canuck Libre, and yes the entire thing is very frightening (via @ctv_stjohn)
Headshots are a Canucks Army feature where we link to the day's freshest news, and other assorted Canucks web-goodies. If you've written a blogpost, produced a tribute video or birthed a clever .gif into existence - please e-mail Thom at email@example.com.
April 09 2012 01:38PM
Hordi is angry. And so am I. He's angry about getting a penalty.
I'm angry that Darcy Hordichuk still plays hockey in the National Hockey League.
(Photo by Jeff Vinnick/NHLI via Getty Images)
Today I continue my weekly feature of me venting and raging on stupid crap happening with the Canucks, their fans and around the NHL. Two things about feature... 1) It will appear (hopefully) every Monday, and 2) It is blatantly ripped off from a stand-up bit from comedian Craig Anton. On either point, I make no apologies. Enjoy. Or don't.
This week, I call a series of inexplicable penalties on Staples Center, Gary Bettman, dumb historical stats and a lack of love for Hammy.