Okay, so it took us all a few days to recover from the shock.
Willie Mitchell wasn’t the only one who thought the Canucks had something special going this year. Lots of us did.
Of course our enthusiasm leaves us open to the ridicule from other fan bases…but hey, how well did their team do?
So of course I’m watching hockey still and I suddenly realize I’ve discovered the secret to not only beating Chicago, but also how the Canucks can assemble a guaranteed Cup winning team.
Detroit showed me how easy it is to beat Chicago.
Start with a world class offence that seems to score at will. And watch the little things these guys do. They swarm the puck, they take possession and they don’t want to give it up. They have ice water in their veins and they never panic. They forecheck fiercely and then back check like they’re about to be traded to the KHL. Then they just shoot the puck into the back of the net. Oh yeah, and it doesn’t hurt to have a guy like Holmstrom standing in front of the goalie, bumping, obstructing and gleefully taking whatever punishment is directed back at him. And guys like Datsyuk, Zetterberg, Hossa and Franzen have the hockey equivalent of the smart bomb. The shots just keep bulging the twine.
On defense it helps to have a system and the one put together by Babcock seems to be near perfect.
Forwards are always back in their own zone and never leave it too early. Sure Lidstrom is the best in the league and his supporting cast is strong…but believe me it’s the system that makes it all work.
As for goaltending well, Osgood is fine. But let’s face it, with all that other stuff going on, fine is all he has to be.
And that’s how you beat Chicago.
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But I also said I could assemble a Canuck team that was guaranteed to win the Cup. Here it is:
Once we re-sign the Sedins and Luongo for long term, low priced contracts, all we have to do is sign Marian Gaborik to a long term, low priced deal as well.
Then we have to trade Bieksa and allow Ohlund to walk and we’ll have the cap space to sign JayBo to…a long term, low priced deal.
Of course, Hodgson and Grabner will not only make the team but become major point producers from the third line. We can slot in Raymond or Hansen, depending on who’s hot.
Burows and Kesler will be expected to continue their ascension to top six performance levels and Mats will sign a really, really low priced deal so he can play in the Olympics and center our second line. Then all we have to do is trade Demitra and the aforementioned Bieksa for a 30 goal power forward who wants to sign an extension with us for a long term, but of course really low priced deal.
As for the rest of the defense, the big problem will be figuring out where to slot in Scott Neidermayer as he will certainly wish to sign a short term, low priced deal with us once he sees what we’ve assembled.
So there you have it folks. How to beat the Hawks and put together a guaranteed cup winning franchise…all in one column!
Simple really. I don’t know why no one else saw it.