Immediately after their elimination from the 2013 NHL postseason (with similar immediacy, even) Daniel Sedin and Henrik Sedin, alongside the madman Alex Edler, accepted the invitation to the World Hockey Championships.
We’ve heard it time and time again: the Worlds mean a very different things for European hockey players. And it’s true. But these Worlds meant even more to the Swedish players, because Sweden wasn’t just a gold medal hopeful — they were the host nation. A win on home ice would make them the first host nation to win the tournament in 27 years, and to underscore how long ago that was, three of the eight nations in that 1986 World Championships — Czechoslovakia, West Germany, and gold medal host the Soviet Union — no longer exist.
On Sunday, Sedin-led Sweden (or Swedin, as it’s known when Daniel and Henrik are in the lineup) got it done, bringing gold to the land of the midnight sun.Continue Reading —›
While the World Hockey Championships are a bit of an afterthought in North America, they’re a much bigger deal in Europe. This is particularly true when it comes to the rivalry between Finland and Sweden, which apparently dates back to 1932.
At the 2010 Olympics, Sweden beat Finland 3-0 during the round robin, but was eliminated before Finland could get their revenge. Finland went on to win the bronze medal. They got their re-match, however, at the 2011 World Championships, trouncing Sweden 6-1 in the gold medal game. The long and storied rivalry will continue on Saturday, as the two countries face each other in the semi-finals after Sweden stunned Canada in the shootout on Thursday.
It’s not surprising, then, that Ilta-Sanomet, Finland’s second largest newspaper, would rile up some nationalistic feelings in the Friday edition of their paper. They did this, however, in one of the most regrettable ways possible, publishing paper dolls of Daniel and Henrik Sedin wearing high heels with cut-out dresses to attach to them.Continue Reading —›
Team Sweden eliminated Team Canada from the quarterfinals at the World Hockey Championships Thursday, winning in a shootout despite ignoring years and years of evidence that Daniel and Henrik Sedin should not be used in such situations. Both twins missed on their attempts, and yet, somehow, Team Canada still found a way to lose. That’s incredible.
Anyway. With the loss, Dan Hamhuis’s World Championships are officially over.
But so too are Alex Edler’s. While the rest of his brethren from the tournament’s host nation will move on to the semifinals versus Finland — the archnemesis with which they share the weirdly suggestive-looking Scandinavian peninsula — Edler has been suspended for the remainder of the tournament after his kneeing incident with Team Canada captain Eric Staal.Continue Reading —›
Canucks fans have been wanting Alex Edler to play a more physical game for years. He’s proven in the past, to Drew Doughty, for instance, that he can be an effective and devastating hitter, but he has been frustratingly inconsistent with that side of his game.
Edler is such a low-key guy that one of his defining traits is his ability to take a nap almost anywhere. That seems to seep into his play. He remains calm and relaxed on the ice, but never seems to get riled up enough to throw a big hit. He certainly never seems to get emotionally involved enough to get angry and throw a dirty check.
That’s why it was shocking to see him go knee-on-knee with Eric Staal during Team Sweden’s game against Team Canada at the World Championships. It was an ugly, ugly hit that will likely see Staal miss significant time and earn Edler a hefty suspension.Continue Reading —›
Chris Tanev had a solid season for the Canucks, showing that he’s ready to step into a larger role next season. He even spent some time in the top-four alongside Alex Edler. It seemed like he instantly developed chemistry with whoever he played with thanks to his calm, simple style of play.
Tanev is also a pending Restricted Free Agent this off-season, leading to an interesting question. How much is Tanev worth? He doesn’t do any one thing noticeably well. He doesn’t put up points and doesn’t hit. What he does do is make smart decisions with the puck and a good first pass out of the zone. He plays largely mistake-free defence, which is a nice switch for Canucks fans used to Kevin Bieksa and Alex Edler, who are far more high-risk.
It was revealed today that Tanev would be representing himself in his contract negotiations, with help from his dad, Mike. That makes things a little more complicated, as Tanev’s dad will likely spend the entire meeting with Gillis saying awkward, embarrassing things, causing Tanev to roll his eyes and say “Daaaaaad” at least twice.
Here are 18 things you can expect Tanev’s dad to say during his son’s contract negotiations.Continue Reading —›
After two early playoff exits, the second and most recent an embarrassing sweep at the hands of the San Jose Sharks, I think it’s safe to assume that the Vancouver Canucks are in need of some changes this summer.
Mike Gillis called it a “reset”, but I doubt he actually meant beginning at the start screen. My guess is he’ll input the passcode, Megaman 2-style, to start back at the robot masters gauntlet in Dr. Wily’s castle or something.
That was an extremely alienating metaphor. Basically, while the Canucks aren’t about to come back next season with 20 new faces, you have to make a few adjustments to a group keeps dying on Woodman (dammit, sorry again), so, yes, some moves are coming.
Here is a move I think Gillis should make: trade Roberto Luongo.Continue Reading —›
A player’s statistics in a shortened season can be difficult to evaluate, partly because we’re so used to seeing numbers after 82 games. A 30-goal scorer in a normal season is a 17.56-goal scorer in a 48-game season, which just doesn’t have the same ring to it.
So, in order to ease the evaluation process a little, I have pro-rated the Canucks goals, assists, points, penalty minutes, and shots over 82 games. While we have no idea what might have occurred over games 49-82 if they had actually happened, this should at least give us a better picture of how well each player performed compared to previous seasons.Continue Reading —›
It’s the NHL playoffs, which means it’s time for television newscasters and personalities who haven’t the first clue about hockey to start pretending like they care about the NHL. This is particularly true for those on NBC, the American rights holder for the NHL.
Poor Jimmy Fallon was clearly asked by his bosses at NBC to work the NHL into his show on Monday night. Games have already been shown on NBC Sports Network and CNBC, but the main channel will start showing games starting on Saturday, May 18th, and clearly want to build some buzz. Fallon has shown an ability to create some virality in the past and NBC hoped he’d do the same for the NHL playoffs.
One problem: it’s not that Fallon doesn’t know the first thing about hockey — he doesn’t know the second, third, or fourth thing either. One of those things he doesn’t know is how to pronounce the names of any hockey player with a name more complicated than “Ryan.” Fallon worked the NHL into one of his existing bits — Late Night Superlatives — with simultaneously hilarious and horribly awkward results.Continue Reading —›
Gerald Morton is a part-time Zamboni operator, PhD Candidate, occasional lecturer at Vancouver Island University and former hockey target. He’s written two guest posts for Puck Daddy, and he comes to us now with something to say about the failed 2013 campaign of the Vancouver Canucks.
If you want to write a guest post for PITB, by all means, reach out to us at email@example.com. We’re always happy to showcase other writers.Continue Reading —›
Immediately after the Canucks were eliminated from the postseason, Dan Hamhuis, along with the Canucks’ swedish contingent and Nicklas Jensen, accepted the invitation to World Hockey Championships in Stockholm.
Steve Yzerman and Lindy Ruff, Team Canada’s GM and head coach, respectively, must think highly of Hamhuis. With his arrival, Yzerman all but declared his team-building job complete, despite P.K. Subban becoming available. And as for Ruff, he handed Hamhuis huge minutes in his debut: The Canucks’ defenceman led all Team Canada skaters with 22:38 of ice time in a 2-1 win over the Czech Republic. (One suspects this was either Ruff playing his best all-around veteran defenceman in a tight game, or this was an otherwise unemployed Lindy Ruff trying to show Mike Gillis, who may or may not be looking for a new coach, how well he gets along with Dan Hamhuis. But I digress.)
Hamhuis was even more impactful in his second game, a 4-3 overtime win over Slovenia. The Smithers native was on the ice for just two goals in Canada’s come-from-behind victory: Team Canada’s first goal and Team Canada’s last goal.
On their last, the Community Man pitched in in a big way, making a beautiful pass to Steven Stamkos, the best guy to pass it to, for the overtime winner.Continue Reading —›