WWYDW: Voting for the annual year-end Canuck awards

Photo credit:© Bob Frid-USA TODAY Sports
Stephan Roget
2 years ago
Welcome back to WWYDW, the only hockey column on the internet with more points-per-minute than Connor McDavid.
Today, our job is relatively easy. That’s because, as they do every year around this time, the Vancouver Canucks have opened up voting for their annual year-end awards.
In other words, why would we come up with a topic of discussion for this week’s comment section when the team has already given us four questions worthy of spirited debate?
The Canucks ask fans to vote on the Fred J. Hume Award for an unsung hero, the Pavel Bure Award for most exciting player, the Walter “Babe” Pratt Trophy for best defender, and the Cyclone Taylor Trophy for team MVP.
Voting can be done here, but once you’ve registered your ballot, please head down to the comment section here and record your picks so that the arguing can commence in earnest.
That’s right, this week we want to know:

Who are your picks for the annual year-end Canuck awards?

(Feel free to copy-and-paste the below list for the sake of your editor!)

Fred J. Hume Award (Unsung Hero):

Pavel Bure Award (Most Exciting):

Walter “Babe” Pratt Trophy(Best Defender):

Cyclone TaylorTrophy (Team MVP):

Last week, we asked:

If you could change one NHL rule, what would it be, and why?

Your suggestions are below!
One rule change — teams can only change players on the fly, no substitutions during whistles.
This would disrupt line-matching, create more tired situations, and create more mistakes leading to offensive chances.
And more PPs due to increased too-many-men penalties!
New rule: with the importance of player safety, hitting from behind is called much better, but has led to players positioning themselves so that they are ineligible for a hit. Lame! In the most obvious cases, if a player turns his back in order to avoid being eligible for a hit, I would like to see the call of “Presenting”. Players should position themselves to take a hit safely and hopefully the call would bring the same shame as diving or embellishment.
No further explanation required.
MrTrip’s Brother:
As I think JDMay is suggesting, I would change the points structure to 3 points for a win, 2 points for OT win, 1 point for a tie or OT loss, and no shoot-out. Right now, there is no reward for going for the win in a close third period game. If you go to OT, you get a safety net of one point without decreasing the potential reward since you can still get two points. Denying the opposing team the loser point is also not as valuable in a regular season when you play teams outside your division. The 3-2-1 system means there is always a reward for trying to win.
Also, the record books are already skewed by forcing games into a three-point system with the shootout, so I don’t buy the legacy counter-argument.
El Kabong:
I’ve never understood why when a team breaks the rules and they get penalized that they also get an advantage. Get rid of being allowed to ice the puck shorthanded.
Lose the trapezoid. Why a goalie can’t play the puck behind the net outside of this zone has never been explained to my recollection. Back in the day Ed Giacomin was a master goaltender behind his own net for the NYR and was like a third D out there and extremely effective. To me this is just more Bettman pap designed to create more scoring. And getting a penalty shooting the puck over the boards is the same miserable process to promote power plays. Let the pros do the scoring because of exemplary skill, not lame rulebook garbage.
Not so much a rule change as an infrastructure change — put the goal lines back to where they were in the pre-Gretzky era, closer to the end boards. Leave the distance between the goal line and the blue line as is. This would create a few more feet in length in the neutral zone and make for more north-south skating and rush chances.
With current configuration it’s too much like basketball — gain the zone, passpasspass till you get a shot, then puck turns over and other team gets a set play in offensive zone.
Longer neutral zone would equal more improvising and chances off the rush and fewer set plays and less cycling the puck in O-Zone.
I would like to see them eliminate the bluelines and have the team that got scored on gets the puck in their end.
By doing this you have eliminated offsides which means you only need one linesman to make icing calls…maybe they should eliminate icing as well.
Hughes will become the greatest player ever, as he is already excellent at being a pond hockey player.
Automatic two minutes for the over the glass, delay of game penalty has got to go. Add some discretion.
This one won’t be popular: get rid of the goalie restrictions behind the net, but let the goalies be fair game for physicality outside the crease. This way they can play the puck if they want, but there is risk. I see quite a lot of goalies go out for the puck in the trap and then purposely get in the way of the forecheckers behind the net because they are untouchable and they know it.
Most of my line of thinking arose from our 2011 cup run when Tim f’ing Thomas was able to full on bodycheck Hank Sedin on a breakaway. A goalie can hit a player but not vice versa, and it’s kinda BS. If a goalie wants to roam with the players he is treated as such.
Here is one that will be controversial even though it shouldn’t be when you think about it. End hockey fights. Yes, that old controversial tough nut. As the game has entered a modern era there is no reason for fights to exist.
“It fires up the team!!!” I hear some people shouting at me. Know what fires up a team even more? Having a player put in a great gritty shift where they dominate the opposition! Having your goalie make a highlight real save. Having your star player score a beauty. Having a meaningless fight because your team is too incompetent to actually score goals is just embarrassing. “But it brings justice to the game and keeps players in line.” Hockey, just like any sport is going to have bad calls and players acting like jackarses. Fights happening doesn’t magically stop bad calls from happening or make jerk players stop acting like jerks. There is a reason fights happen between certain players over and over again.
In the modern game, fighting adds nothing more than giving fans tired of seeing their team pushed around something to cheer for. I would rather see my team get pushed around while outscoring the other team than see them get involved in some fight while losing a game 6-3.
Darren C:
If a player is on the ice and he is cross-checked to the head, back of the neck, or back, it is at least an automatic double minor. It seems to happen every game at some point. Some folks call mixed martial arts barbaric, but even the UFC has rules to protect their fighters in those vulnerable areas.
I suggest that the NHL allow 20 skaters to dress like the international rules. Not sure why teams have players on the roster, pay them NHL salaries, but don’t allow them to dress. Allows for more options for the coach and players feel like they’re part of the team.
I would change the marginal offside call on a goal. Say if a play is in the zone for more than 30 seconds, then the goal counts. No more ‘oh his foot was a centimetre off the ice so the play is offside.’
Get rid of the instigator rule. Let the players police themselves because the player safety dept is doing a really poor job. Maybe the players will start having some respect for each other if they have to answer the bell for cheap shots.
One thing I have always thought would be interesting to explore is a version of the NBA’s “Bird Rule.” What sucks is if a team is bad for a while and picks high in consecutive years that team must start to consider trading or letting top picks they developed walk. Not sure of the particulars, but if a team has picked and developed a certain number of players, that team can exceed the cap by X%.
Having teams with recognizable core players increases the viewership. Oilers of the ‘80s, Penguins of the ‘90s, etc…
Change: Get rid of the singing of national anthems.
Why: There is an obvious shortage of people who can sing. What rankles more is that the singer thinks that the big cheer after the song is for the singing, when it is really a celebration of relief that it is over and the game can begin.
Although I expect it not to be the most popular choice, I’d love to see offside eliminated at evens.
I would drastically change the offside review rules, not just tweak it, so that it reflects the true intent of the original problem: where one guy was way behind (or ahead) of the play offside and gained a huge unfair advantage because the refs didn’t see him. Why not make that exact scenario the only reason you can challenge a goal for offside?
Now we can’t even celebrate any goal because we have to wait for the teams to check their iPads and go back to see if the zone entry one minute prior was not perfect? This is ridiculous, in a league that wants more scoring, how many amazing, exciting, and important goals are nullified because of this bonehead rule? The linesmen will look at a high-speed play and sometimes call offside when it wasn’t and sometimes not call offside when it was, there’s human error in everything, but it usually all evens out in the end.
Defenceman Factory:
(Winner of the author’s weekly award for eloquence)
I want to see punitive measures taken against teams and ownership for the dangerous actions of their players. A heavy fine system escalating to a loss of points in the standings or draft picks for multiple offences should be implemented. The department of player safety doesn’t have a great track record and the practice of simply punishing individual players is grossly inadequate. It does almost nothing to get dangerous players out of the game and there is not enough incentive for teams and coaches to be diligent in trying to minimize head shots. Worksafe BC doesn’t target workers, they target employers and you better believe they make employers take it seriously.
One thing that definitely should change. Who is eligible for ROY. Wayne Gretzky couldn’t win in his first year as he played in the WHA.
So why should Kaprizov be eligible if he played six seasons in the KHL and was leading scorer in two seasons?
Cutoff should be 22 years of age. Guys like Norris, Stützle, et al. But not a guy in their mid-20s that has been playing professionally elsewhere.
I think the rules are fine, but I would like the referees to get away from their “game management” mindset and call it as they see it.
Elbowing and charging are rampant and result in head injuries, concussions, and back problems.
Despite the Tim Peel incident, every ref does even up calls. Some have their own pet peeves in that one guy will call phantom slashes and another calls borderline hooks. All the while the more violent infractions only get called or talked about when someone gets hurt. It’s pretty easy to tell when a guy like Ferland takes a run at a Sedin from the centre line to the goal line that he is charging, and on a superstar no less.
These things irk me and need to be called.
The rule I think needs to be changed most isn’t an on-ice rule. It is the ridiculous setup that has some games worth 3 points, others 2 points. It makes a mockery of points %.
Either don’t break ties, which I’d prefer but which I don’t think would be palatable to those who grew up seeing overtime, or give 3 points for a regulation win.
The rule I’d like to change is the delayed offside, although it’s not the rule that needs changing, it’s the application of the rule by the refs. It’s ridiculous how often the play is not stopped on an offside when the shot goes on net, or when the offending team hasn’t cleared the zone, yet they are obstructing the play or actually pressuring the puck.
Watch how often this is done by the player who is offside and has to clear the zone. It can be blatant at times, subtle at other times, but the offending team somehow continues to have pressure despite breaking the rules. Lay off and let the player skate or pass the puck, or whistle it down. It’s a strategic version of all the hooking and holding. Wherever the refs are slack, the players gradually exploit it more and more.
Really, I just want this change for the entire rule book. It’s amazing when you watch broadcasts how many commentators get the rules wrong in subtle ways, and these are former players. The refs don’t enforce the rules correctly so how would the players have this drilled into their heads? The only thing getting drilled into their heads these days are elbows and end boards.

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