1.) Dan Carcillo
Oh Dan. Dan Dan Dan. For those of you who aren’t aware, Dan has leapt into the Vancouver Chicago rivalry with the enthusiasm of George Lucas trying to replace his friends with 3D computer models. Let’s take a quick recap of Dan’s thoughts on the Canucks. First, we have his latest tweet:
If this was a Canuck tweeting this, well, I am pretty sure twitter would implode due to too much use of the word “classless”, “pathetic”, and “typical Canuck garbage.” But since it is a non-Vancouver team doing this, it’s just a fun subplot to a hockey game. That’s how this works, right? But this isn’t the first time Dan has weighed in on the Canucks. As some of you may remember in the off-season, Dan offered up this gem (Via Puck Daddy, via a CSN video)
Aside from Dan not being too up to date on the Canucks roster (We’ll forgive him as it’s hard enough remembering to put pants on in the morning, let alone be up to date on roster movements), Dan also didn’t like how the Canucks played “a little bit outside of their shoes.” I won’t lie. I have no idea what this means. I assume this is a mortal insult to the Carcillo family. I am now terrified of having dinner at his house as I wouldn’t know if taking off my shoes would be considered an act of war or not.
Although I find how Dan has embraced this rivalry very awkward (It’s kind of like two guys having an inside joke when a third guy just meets them and wants in on it to feel like part of the group.), I have no doubt Dan will try and back his claims up. Lapierre, although he has dropped the gloves with more frequency this season, should not be fighting Dan. Which means Aaron “One Punch” Volpatti probably has a date with Dan tonight. Anytime Dan gets on the ice, I will be watching and waiting to see what happens.
Don’t forget to take off your shoes, Aaron.
2.) Roberto Luongo in Chicago
There are two forces at war in this one. One force is Luongo in Chicago, which always makes people uneasy as we remember the beatings he has received there. The other force is November Luongo, who is typically very good. So it will be an interesting storyline to see which Luongo shows up. The lights out, I’m going to be robbed of a Vezina by a fat Marty Brodeur, did you hear a bell because someone’s being taken to school, hey Patrick Kane, why is your medal silver and not gold, Roberto Luongo or the Roberto Luongo that has to huddle in the shower after the game because Chicago did unspeakable things to him during the game. Luongo looked good last game against St. Louis, and if his team actually decides to help him out this game, we might get a glimpse of the good Roberto. The Roberto that would never hurt us. The Roberto that promised he would always be there for us.
3.) History repeats itself?
That will be one theme people might be looking at tonight. Last year it was after a terrible regular season beating to Chicago that Vancouver finally snapped out of its early season slump and went on to have the greatest season in the history of the franchise. I do not want to hear anyone say this if we lose tonight. I can grasp onto straws with the best of them, but I would prefer the St. Louis game to be our turnaround game. I don’t need to see another beating at the hands of the Hawks to be some sort of symbolic loss that the Canucks can build upon. You’re the defending Presidents Trophy winners. Go act like it. Take off your shoes, beat Daniel Carcillo repeatedly with them, and smash these Hawks. Use the game where Dan Carcillo gets rag dolled by Aaron Volpatti to the point where he voids his bowels in his hockey pants as the symbolic turnaround point. Not only would this be amusing, but it would also be a highly watched YouTube video.
4.) Chicago Toughness
This almost goes hand in hand with Dan Carcillo, but the Hawks feel they were pushed around last year by the Canucks, and lost too much of their toughness with the departures of Andrew Ladd, Dustin Byfuglien, Ben Eager, and Adam Burish. Since last year they have added Sean O’Donnell, Steve Montador, and Jamal Mayers, to go along with "Shoebomb" Carcillo, and everyone’s favorite pylon John Scott. I have a feeling Chicago might be a little annoyed at losing in the first round last year, and being on home ice, I have a feeling a lot of the Chicago players will be feeling very brave. I expect a first period of violence and destruction on par with Shane O’Brien after he’s been denied entry to the Roxy. It’s going to be ugly. Chicago is going to try and run Vancouver into the ground, so it will be interesting to see how the Canucks respond to this. What will be more interesting to see is if the Canucks get destroyed in this game, how badly will the fans take up the battle cry of “We need more toughness!” as well as holding midnight vigils outside of Raffi Torres’ house in Phoenix?
5.) Barry Rozner
For those of you unaware of Barry Rozner, fellow #replacethekb contestant Katie did an awesome article on him. Check it out here: http://canuckshockeyblog.com/?p=8255
For those of you who know Barry Rozner, you know that the best part of the game will be how Barry writes about the game afterwards. For your benefit, I have broken into his house and found his Mad Libs writing guide, which shows the ease to which Rozner can produce his articles.
Barry Rozner, I can only hope you’re recognized for your ground breaking reporting one day, my friend.
(I just really wanted to use this picture. So instead of Brunette, you get this. Yay!)
6.) Andrew Brunette
Lost in all of this violence talk is the fact that Andrew “Canuck Killer” Brunette is now a Blackhawk. This scares me. I do not like this. I still have vivid memories of falling into a comatose state during Wild games only to be woken up occasionally by Andrew Brunette tearing the Canucks a new one. The fact that Brunette is on the Hawks…..I again, dislike this. I am almost positive Stan Bowman spent the off-season trying to find guys to sign specifically to piss off Vancouver. I am just shocked he didn’t somehow manage to land Hejduk and convince Drury to come out of retirement just so he could really ram home the Canuck killers of the past. Hopefully Brunette makes the mistake of playing outside of his shoes, though, and Daniel Carcillo is forced to kill him. “You knew the rules Andrew……why’d you have to play outside your shoes, man?? Why???” as Dan takes a run at Andrew during the game.