by Brian Beitz
If someone had told me earlier in the year that one of the Canucks strongest runs would come with Daniel Sedin and Kevin Bieksa sitting out with injuries, I would have… I’d have… Well, I’d probably believe them. Despite their lackluster play in January and February, the Canucks play a strong system game and have always said that if they stick to that system, they give themselves a great chance to win no matter who’s in the lineup. Now, since Daniel went down due to a
mysterious upper-body injury cheap and brutal headshot—wait, did I cross out the wrong part there?—the Canucks have won 6 straight, their longest winning streak of the season. Really, with the schedule as it is, the Canucks could very well finish the season on a 9-0 run without their leading goal scorer. It’s like they don’t even need him!
The problem is, as you’ll find out after the jump, the Canucks seem to realize this as well…
A quiet night at the Beitz house…
Aidan: Hey Brian, let’s play a quick game of word association.
Brian: Umm… OK.
A: Trevor Linden.
B: Hockey god.
A: Of course. Hockey play?
B: Spine board.
A: Right… Zdeno Chara?
B: $#!£ Giant.
A: Fair enough. The Sedins.
B: Soft minutes.
A: Woah, woah. Soft minutes? I’ll admit that the Sedins get a lot of offensive zone starts but—
B: Because they’re not great at defending, right? I’ve read that’s why they get the generous zone starts.
A: Yes, zone starts. It seems that hockey stat-heads are reluctant to praise the offensive production of Daniel and Henrik because they are given the advantage of starting nearly 80 per cent of their 5-on-5 shifts in the offensive zone. These stats prove, according to the narrative, that the twins are “sheltered“ and defensively unsound.
B: Well if they were good defensive players, then why wouldn’t they begin more of their shifts in the defensive zone?
A: I’m glad you asked, Brian…
by Brian Beitz
Alain Vigneault must be an Arnie fan, because he had a smirk on his face when he announced that he’d be splitting up the Sedins to start a game against the Nashville Predators last week. Surely that smirk could only be attributed to having watched Twins recently: AV knew the hilarity and hijinks that would ensue whenever the twins were reunited. And, much like the famous—if not identical—duo, the Sedins’ split led to gun fights, sleeping with Kellie Preston, and eventually being reunited with a long-lost maternal figure. OK, so the analogy breaks down a bit here. But the twins were separated after a Danny Devito of a month that still provided some Schwarzenegger-like results.