There was one scene near the end of Monday’s night tilt between the Canucks and Wild where Captain Henrik Sedin was surrounded by not one, not two, but three Minnesota players and with no other Nucks to be found.
As a fan, I was left shaking my head without cessation for over a minute and I end up having to ask myself where the hell is this team’s heart? Possibly a better question: where are their heads? Where are the good ol’ Vancouver Canucks we’ve come to know and love?
The answer is neither simple nor difficult.
It has become clearer after each cringe-worthy loss in the last month that the Canucks are figured out. Don’t expect the Sedins to ever relinquish their cycling ways because that’s their bread and butter and world-class players always find a way to make it work.
However, a shake-up in systems is desperately needed. In simpler terms, Alain Vigneault and the rest of the coaching staff need replacing.
That statement is not made blindly. Not once in the entire span of my fandom though have I been this fed up with and ready to be rid of the coaches. The thing is Alain Vigneault has no trust with his bubble players. He need not worry about the twins of course.
They’ll have a bad game and no one bats an eye but Keith Ballard makes one faux pas and he’s in the dog house (and that dog house is heated by Alain’s ice-cold heart).
Admittedly, Ballard’s read on the 3-1 goal by the Wild Monday was poor but deep in the defensive zone, he’s as solid as anyone, or at the very least Andrew Alberts and Cam Barker for crying out loud.
Some people will clamour for AV’s job to be left alone citing the absence of Ryan Kesler, David Booth and Kevin Bieksa at various points this season but what about when the team was without Daniel Sedin a couple seasons ago.
The Canucks and Henrik of all people thrived off of that. The players came together and battled.
Perhaps not explicitly and in the media, but it would be a solid assumption that the players are using those losses as an excuse for playing poorly in their heads and that does not breed success.
Vigneault has the audacity to say the team is, “trying their best,” and, “playing well,” after Monday’s game? Why don’t we just plan the parade route Alain?
It’s extremely strenuous to get one’s mind around the Luongo-Schneider debacle. What on Luongawd’s green earth is Coach Vee going to do (if he’s still around) with the goalie situation come playoff time (if the Canucks make the playoffs)?
Vigneault’s biggest mistake was starting Cory Schneider in Game 3 of last year’s opening round playoff series against the Kings. That one move forced Gillis’ hand to signing the Marblehead, Massachusetts native to a contract extension when Mike Gillis had already made a lengthy commitment to the man who brought this team to within one win of a Stanley Cup just 21 months ago.
Here we are with 20 games remaining in the shortened 2013 season and Schneider has far inferior numbers than we would have hoped and numbers that I can almost guarantee would be higher had Roberto Luongo been traded before the season commenced.
We’re talking about the playoffs when they are far from a certainty but it’s a pressing issue. The Canucks and Coach Vee absolutely cannot go back and forth between goaltenders in the post-season like they have so far this regular season. It’s positively out of the question and the key for every issue raised in this entire post is consistency.
The Canucks have formed no on-ice routine (besides losing) to go with their off ice regimen of sleep doctor ordered naps and nutritionist advised high carb diets.
This is the easiest part Canucks fans and if you haven’t begun singing to the tune of this song just yet, it’s about time: “Hope for the best, prepare for the worst.”