With the news today that the Canucks and Jannik Hansen avoided the ugly squabble and dish-throwing of arbitration comes the beautiful realization that fans can look forward to three more years of frenzied forechecking, possessed penalty killing, and delightful high-pitched interviews. At a $1.35 million cap hit, Canucks fans should be thrilled. I’m thrilled. Why aren’t you thrilled? You should be.

Some people might not be happy with the idea of a guy with a career high of 9 goals getting paid $1.35 million. Fair. Wrong, but fair. Hansen isn’t a goalscorer, this much is true. As I showed you in recapping every goal he scored last season, the Danish Ninja scored most of his goals by materializing in front of the net in a puff of smoke to bang in a rebound. He did, however, lead the team in hits and recorded one of the best takeaway-to-giveaway ratios on the team. He also notched 20 assists and, as pointed out in this fantastic post on Canucks Army, he was third on the team in 1st assists/60 minutes, behind only Henrik and Daniel.

It seems, then, that Hansen is a playmaker who has yet to play on a line with a sniper. In his one season in the WHL, he tallied 40 assists in 64 games while playing on a line with current Ranger, Brandon Dubinsky. Lined up with Ryan Kesler, could Hansen put up similar numbers in the NHL?

Remy Greer at Canucks Army pointed out that Hansen could follow in the footsteps of Ryan Kesler and Alex Burrows, both former checking line stalwarts who stepped into larger offensive roles when given the opportunity. Kesler went from 6 goals in an injury-shortened 2006-07 season to 21 the following year at the age of 23, but didn’t fully step into the limelight until his 75-point 2009-10 season at the age of 25. Burrows’ big break didn’t come until he was 27, when he scored 28 goals in 2008-09 and was promoted to the first line.

Hansen will be 25 to start the 2011-12 season: will this be his breakout year? Will we look at his $1.35 million cap hit and cast it in the same light as Burrows’ $2 million as one of the biggest bargains in the league?

Tags: , , , , , , ,

12 comments

  1. ArtemChubarov
    July 28, 2011

    “Hansen will be 25 to start the 2011-12 season: will this be his breakout year? Will we look at his $1.35 million cap hit and cast it in the same light as Burrows’ $2 million as one of the biggest bargains in the league?”

    YES.

    VA:F [1.9.16_1159]
    Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
    • Daniel Wagner
      July 28, 2011

      I’m not sure how you feel about Hansen…you seem on the fence.

      VN:F [1.9.16_1159]
      Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
      • Harrison Mooney
        July 29, 2011

        Geez. Cut Hansen some slack, ArtemChubarov.

        VN:F [1.9.16_1159]
        Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
  2. BECanucks
    July 28, 2011

    Let’s pray, crosses our fingers or whatever your Deity/randomness asks that he won’t be injured and I really feel we’re going to be left wondering “How did he do that?”
    Triple cheers for the comeback of Jannick!

    VA:F [1.9.16_1159]
    Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
  3. peanutflower
    July 28, 2011

    quadruple cheers! he’s definitely a keeper.

    VA:F [1.9.16_1159]
    Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
  4. steviewire
    July 28, 2011

    Thrilled

    VA:F [1.9.16_1159]
    Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
  5. TubaNat
    July 28, 2011

    Comedy Gold: I’d already watched the Cory Schneider impression once today, but thanks to you I’ve watched it again. And maybe a third time BUT THAT WOULD BE IT.

    VA:F [1.9.16_1159]
    Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
  6. TheFalconer
    July 28, 2011

    I gotta say, that’s a fantastic clip.

    VA:F [1.9.16_1159]
    Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
  7. Chazz Ranger
    July 29, 2011

    I’m in love with everything about this post.

    VA:F [1.9.16_1159]
    Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
  8. Jennifer
    July 29, 2011

    There’s more to hockey than scoring goals. Hansen does the dirty work and is one of the reasons that the Canucks were so successful last year. Great to see that he and management were able to come to terms so that he could stay :)

    VA:F [1.9.16_1159]
    Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
  9. DaNucklhead
    July 29, 2011

    I would love to see a reunion of the Burrows – Kesler – Hansen line. It would be interesting to see how the chemistry, or should I say intangibles, of the line would be now that it would be expected to put up significant points.

    VA:F [1.9.16_1159]
    Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
    • Rituro
      July 29, 2011

      H-B-K! H-B-K! H-B-K!

      (If I say it enough, it becomes a chant at Rogers Arena this season, right?)

      VA:F [1.9.16_1159]
      Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)