Spitballin’ on what AV thinks is stupid, Weise’s punch-out punk-out, and that Corey Perry rumour

Spitballin’ (or Super Pass ITBulis: All In, if you love adventurous acronymizing) is a feature that allows us to touch on a multitude of things really fast, because in the world of hockey, there are always lots of things to find and colour. Here are a few topics that deserve mention.

***

Perry for Hodgson, Raymond and Ballard? No.

The moment Anaheim Ducks’ GM Bob Murray announced that, save Saku Koivu and Teemu Selanne, no one was safe if he decided to go Evil Midnight Bomber What Bombs at Midnight on his team’s core, you had to know that trade speculation was going to spring up involving the Ducks and Canucks. It has indeed, as many Canuck fans started sharing a rumour that the Canucks were close to pulling the trigger on a move sending Mason Raymond, Cody Hodgson, and Keith Ballard to Anaheim for Corey Perry. Is there any truth to it?

No. While I’m sure Gillis has asked what it would take to get Perry (as has everyone), he’s not throwing Hodgson into this deal.

There’s no such thing as an untouchable player and no such thing as an untradeable player, but Cody Hodgson’s not getting moved unless a skill center’s coming back. In case you haven’t noticed, Hodgson’s emergence has allowed the Canucks to level up: they’ve graduated from two scoring lines, a checking line and a fourth line to three scoring lines and a checking line. Neither Maxim Lapierre nor Manny Malhotra have the skill to turn a checking line into a scoring line, meaning that the removal of Hodgson causes the dynamic of the team to regress drastically.

Furthermore, I would be dubious of any move that saw Hodgson on the way out for a centre that wasn’t born around the same year. Cody is ten years younger than Henrik Sedin and six years younger than Ryan Kesler. In a league where depth at centre is perhaps the most important thing, I’d be shocked if the Canucks handicapped their future by moving their only elite centre prospect.

Alain Vigneault finds your comment less than wise

Alain Vigneault spoke yesterday on a number of topics, from the Bruins game to Mike Duco’s callup to David Booth and Aaron Rome’s status. But the money quote here comes at 1:53 after someone feeds him Claude Julien’s claim that Brad Marchand was just “protecting himself” from notorious headhunter Sami Salo. We compiled the evidence to refute that claim Sunday, but Vigneault took a much simpler route: “That’s stupid,” he said, “That’s a stupid comment.”

Hilarious. Sometimes Vigneault gets blasted for not saying what he really thinks. One imagines that criticism will see some time off.

By the by, Claude Julien responded to Vigneault’s direct response on Monday morning: “I guess we’re stupid,” he said sarcastically, “We’re idiots. They’re so much more intelligent than everybody else. That’s the way they act.”

Alain Vigneault to the All-Star Game?

Speaking of the Canucks’ coach, if you thought Monday afternoon’s tilt with the Florida Panthers was just two points, well, there’s more riding on it than that: a win sends Vigneault to the All-Star Game as the coaching representative for the Western Conference. From NHL.com:

If the Vancouver Canucks defeat the Florida Panthers, Canucks coach Alain Vigneault will be behind one of the benches at the 2012 Tim Hortons NHL All-Star Game in Ottawa.

If the Canucks lose in regulation or overtime, it will be San Jose’s Todd McLellan earning the final coaching spot in the All-Star Game.

The spot is determined by which team has the greatest points percentage in the Western Conference through Monday’s games. Rangers coach John Tortorella wrapped up the Eastern Conference’s spot Friday.

While I’m sure Vigneault will speak highly of the honour should he get it for the second straight year, coaching a team with no interest in backchecking must be torture. I’m sure he’d rather have the time off, too. If the Canucks come out flat versus the Panthers, they’re just following orders.

Newell Brown hatches a sneaky plan

Since Newell Brown joined the Canucks as a special teams coach, their powerplay has been the best in the NHL. In other words, he’s pretty good at what he does. Why? Because he’s always dreaming up shifty new scheme. Here’s a photo in which, I presume, he’s doing exactly that. I captioned it for you.

Oh Dale Weise, you so crazy

There wasn’t much from the Canucks’ side I didn’t like in Saturday morning’s game against the Boston Bruins, but Dale Weise’s runaway bride routine on Shawn Thornton was deserving of the unsportsmanlike conduct penalty it drew. I didn’t like that at all. If you don’t want to fight a guy, then don’t act like you do.

I don’t quite buy Weise’s explanation of the incident, either. Here’s what he had to say, from Ben Kuzma at The Province:

“You know what? Me and [Adam] McQuaid were having words and I was under the impression that we might have went and I guess he [Thornton] thought I was challenging him,” recalled Weise. “But at the end of the day, that’s not really the type of guy I want to fight.”

Weise is right that Thornton’s not the type of guy he should be fighting (less experienced fighters, for instance, are much better opponents for him), but, while Weise’s Twitter account has long indicated that he isn’t above picking up two dates at once, the rest of what he said doesn’t fly. The wheels came off this explanation when he went on to explain that the Horton fight had really worn him out:

“You don’t realize when you’re in it,” he added. “You just keep going. I got in the box and we exchanged a couple of words and I realized how tired I was. And when I got out of there, I still couldn’t catch my breath and that’s why a couple of other guys were challenging me. It was like: ‘Let me catch my breath.’

So, in short, he was too tired to fight Thornton but not too tired to fight McQuaid? I’m not buying it. The code is stupid, and Weise was under no obligation to fight Thornton — until he indicated that he would.

Tags:

23 comments

  1. peanutflower
    January 9, 2012

    Aaandd… Julien buys into the media perception management madness.

    VA:F [1.9.16_1159]
    Rating: +9 (from 9 votes)
    • peanutflower
      January 9, 2012

      Well, maybe AV’s just playing with his friend. You know, a bit of friendly one upmanship. [sp?}

      VA:F [1.9.16_1159]
      Rating: +4 (from 4 votes)
  2. DanD
    January 9, 2012

    Nice work guys!

    Does Claude Julien remind anyone else of a mob boss? Sometimes I feel like he came right out of the Sopranos.

    VA:F [1.9.16_1159]
    Rating: +12 (from 12 votes)
  3. BrassBonanza
    January 9, 2012

    Chiarelli has Dubbed Marchands actions as a REVERSE CHECK now that is has a name it’s okay to do it. Really though Boston as a City is the ANTI-Fabulous.. Think about it, They hate NYC because it’s bigger and people talk about it non sto, It’s the city that never sleep, where dreams come true and if you can make it there you can make it anywhere..Boston on the other hand living in the shadow has Boston Beans and?? well? They hate Derek Freakin Jeter, How on earth can you hate this guy? Sedins, Manning and anyone else who has skill.

    VA:F [1.9.16_1159]
    Rating: +4 (from 14 votes)
  4. shoes
    January 9, 2012

    Claude Julien reminded me of a hooked halibut, when Hodgson blasted that goal.

    VA:F [1.9.16_1159]
    Rating: +14 (from 16 votes)
    • BabyRuth
      January 9, 2012

      IF Julien was the hooked Halibut then Thomas was the “Stunned Mullet”

      VA:F [1.9.16_1159]
      Rating: +4 (from 6 votes)
  5. Sandlak
    January 9, 2012

    If the Canucks did pick up Perry, that might cinch their title as the most-hated team in the league. That guy is a bigger weasel than Marchand. He’s the dirtiest player in the Western Conference. If he just played hockey and cut out the cheap stuff, he’d be wonderful to watch playing with the Sedins.

    VA:F [1.9.16_1159]
    Rating: +13 (from 13 votes)
    • Tom Bull
      January 9, 2012

      100% agreed with the weasel part. He’d never leave the cheap stuff behind. I hope Canucks will not be stupid enough to give up Hodgson for a weasel. It will be insulting to COHO.

      VA:F [1.9.16_1159]
      Rating: +7 (from 9 votes)
  6. Rituro
    January 9, 2012

    Awesome graphic for Spitballin’. That’s a spittake with gusto.

    VA:F [1.9.16_1159]
    Rating: +8 (from 8 votes)
  7. Moves Like Jagr
    January 9, 2012

    I’m pretty sure Gillis makes that trade in a heartbeat if it means getting Corey Perry. As good as Hodgson may turn out to be, Perry is the reigning Hart trophy winner.

    VA:F [1.9.16_1159]
    Rating: -11 (from 13 votes)
  8. Nick
    January 9, 2012

    Completely agree that the only disappointing aspect of the Canuck’s play against the Bs was Weise’s exchange with Thornton.

    Weise had a good game, and props to him for taking on Horton.

    But pretending you’re going to fight to try to get other guy to drop em’ and take a penalty is a little too sleazy … not that I care too much what other teams’ fans think, but this adds to the misperception about the Canucks’ character.

    VA:F [1.9.16_1159]
    Rating: +9 (from 11 votes)
  9. tj
    January 9, 2012

    I swore to myself I wasn’t going to comment on this incident any more. But I do wonder how AV’s comments, as incendiary as they may seem to be, are unlike what Burke suggested recently, and what even the last cowboy in town, Grapes, has said on numerous occasions. I’m not trying to be incendiary myself, I’m sincerely wondering how/if they are one-in-the-same takes. I don’t believe AV was declaring open season as much as he was being cautionary, but the spin will (and so far seems to) be taken that way. I think Harrison covers this topic in the other article he wrote, but that blog site makes me nervous, so I’m asking here :)

    VA:F [1.9.16_1159]
    Rating: +8 (from 8 votes)
    • stathead
      January 9, 2012

      Yes, the comments on that site are hard core! Don’t want to meet those guys in a dark alley, or in a blog even.

      VA:F [1.9.16_1159]
      Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
  10. Dawg
    January 9, 2012

    If u watch the reply weise is yapping with mcquaid and then Thornton slots it, puts his hand up toward mcquaid and barks something at weise. Then the puck is dropped at so are thorntons gloves. I thought he looked like a wuss till I rewatched. Boston will always hate van cause we don’t play the same. They think that hockey is all about boxing and rough play with a little skill every now and then. In Vancouver it’s the opposite. And julien is proving he’s stupid. Vigneault never said he was stupid, he said the comment was stupid (which it absolutely was, take a poll of the 700+ NHL players, betcha 99% would say that they feel they need to be careful around Marchand, not salo) but julien jumps on the cocky Vancouver band wagon and adds fuel to the fire. Everyone in Boston, I’m sure, knows for a fact that vigneault said that Boston’s coach players and fans are all stupid idiots and we are all geniuses. You only gotta talk to 1 or 2 of their fans to notice this.

    VA:F [1.9.16_1159]
    Rating: +13 (from 13 votes)
    • peanutflower
      January 9, 2012

      I feel so sad for Weise. Wiese. What is it anyway? He tries so hard but misses it by just that much. Like his Twitter for the ladies. Misses by just that much. I like his play though. I think he was a good pick up. Just my opinion.

      VA:F [1.9.16_1159]
      Rating: +6 (from 6 votes)
    • stathead
      January 11, 2012

      Just posting in a few places this quote I just stumbled across even though it’s well after the fact. This is partly because I would like poor Weise’s name cleared as I do think he was just doing his best and had already fought once that period, and in the video to me he really does look a bit caught off guard. And also because I am new to hockey and think it’s crazy that a man gets so much more vilified for this than for a turnover that leads to a winning goal by another team. (Boys. Sigh.)

      “Bruins forward Brad Marchand, making his regular appearance on WEEI with Mut and Merloni, revealed Wednesday that Bruins forward Shawn Thornton knew that Vancouver forward Dale Weise was not trying to fight him in the first period of Saturday’s game.

      Weise extended a challenge and appeared ready to drop his gloves prior to a face-off in the opening period, but when Thornton dropped his gloves at 14:58 of the period, Weise, who had fourth Nathan Horton earlier in the period, kept them on. Though at first glance it appeared Weise was using a cheap tactic to sucker Thornton into a penalty, Marchand said Wednesday that the challenge was indeed being extended to Adam McQuaid, and that Thornton jumped in to “surprise” Weise.

      “I’m going to clear it up for everyone who’s listening,” Marchand said. “It was actually a really sneaky play by Thorty. Weise was trying to fight McQuaid, who was standing behind Thornton on the point. McQuaid was going to fight him. So, Weise was yelling and saying, ‘Yeah, let’s go, let’s go.’

      “Thorty just figured that at that point he’d drop his gloves and surprise Weise. And the ref just kind of heard Weise yelling ‘Let’s go’ and thought he was talking to Thorty and conning him into a penalty. Thorty kind of surprised him when Thorty dropped his gloves. Weise had no idea Thorty was going to do that.”

      Added Marchand: “Him and Quaider know each other a bit from the minors and I think junior as well. They might have went at [it] there.”

      Marchand’s words corroborate Weise’s story, as he told reporters prior to Monday’s game that he was trying to fight McQuaid.

      Thornton expressed confusion by the play following the game, though he did suggest that Weise could have possibly been looking to fight McQuaid. Both players were given unsportsmanlike conduct minors for the ordeal.

      “Oh, he said ‘let’s go’,” Thornton said after the game. “I don’t know if he was talking to me or someone else but [referee Dan O'Rourke] heard him and [referee Don] VanMassenhoven heard him and that’s why he went with me I’m assuming. I mean, you’ll have to ask him. But Donny said, “wait until the puck drops” and I said “of course”. I heard him say ‘we’ll go’, maybe he was talking to McQuaid or I have no idea. But, I thought it was, obviously thought it was go time.”

      Thornton added Tuesday night on Comcast Sports Net that he wanted to fight Weise because he was among the players who jumped him when he was drastically outnumbered 3:54 into the game.”

      VA:F [1.9.16_1159]
      Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
  11. Nee
    January 9, 2012

    If the Canucks traded for Perry, I would die a little inside.

    Seriously. That guy would taint the jersey.

    VA:F [1.9.16_1159]
    Rating: 0 (from 2 votes)
  12. stathead
    January 9, 2012

    I have a question, a real one: can Harrison or anyone tell me why Weise ought to have fought Thornton, or (to put the same thing another way) what he had done to indicate he was willing to fight Thornton? I know he fought someone else, and was ready to fight another guy – is that all it was? Don Cherry tried to lay it out but fell short of his usual urbane summary. I truly don’t ever understand the unwritten rules about fighting.

    VA:F [1.9.16_1159]
    Rating: +1 (from 1 vote)
    • Daniel Wagner
      January 9, 2012

      Thornton claimed he said “let’s go” after some jawing back and forth. My best lip reading at the time definitely made me think that’s what he said well before the post-game comments from Thornton.

      It’s not that he should have fought, it’s that Thornton thought that Weise was challenging him to fight.

      VN:F [1.9.16_1159]
      Rating: 0 (from 2 votes)
    • stathead
      January 11, 2012

      Just posting this quote I just stumbled across even though it’s well after the fact. This is partly because I would like poor Weise’s name cleared as I do think he was just doing his best and had already fought once that period, and in the video to me he really does look a bit caught off guard. And also because I am new to hockey and think it’s crazy that a man gets so much more vilified for this than for a turnover that leads to a winning goal by another team. (Boys. Sigh.)

      “Bruins forward Brad Marchand, making his regular appearance on WEEI with Mut and Merloni, revealed Wednesday that Bruins forward Shawn Thornton knew that Vancouver forward Dale Weise was not trying to fight him in the first period of Saturday’s game.

      Weise extended a challenge and appeared ready to drop his gloves prior to a face-off in the opening period, but when Thornton dropped his gloves at 14:58 of the period, Weise, who had fourth Nathan Horton earlier in the period, kept them on. Though at first glance it appeared Weise was using a cheap tactic to sucker Thornton into a penalty, Marchand said Wednesday that the challenge was indeed being extended to Adam McQuaid, and that Thornton jumped in to “surprise” Weise.

      “I’m going to clear it up for everyone who’s listening,” Marchand said. “It was actually a really sneaky play by Thorty. Weise was trying to fight McQuaid, who was standing behind Thornton on the point. McQuaid was going to fight him. So, Weise was yelling and saying, ‘Yeah, let’s go, let’s go.’

      “Thorty just figured that at that point he’d drop his gloves and surprise Weise. And the ref just kind of heard Weise yelling ‘Let’s go’ and thought he was talking to Thorty and conning him into a penalty. Thorty kind of surprised him when Thorty dropped his gloves. Weise had no idea Thorty was going to do that.”

      Added Marchand: “Him and Quaider know each other a bit from the minors and I think junior as well. They might have went at [it] there.”

      Marchand’s words corroborate Weise’s story, as he told reporters prior to Monday’s game that he was trying to fight McQuaid.

      Thornton expressed confusion by the play following the game, though he did suggest that Weise could have possibly been looking to fight McQuaid. Both players were given unsportsmanlike conduct minors for the ordeal.

      “Oh, he said ‘let’s go’,” Thornton said after the game. “I don’t know if he was talking to me or someone else but [referee Dan O'Rourke] heard him and [referee Don] VanMassenhoven heard him and that’s why he went with me I’m assuming. I mean, you’ll have to ask him. But Donny said, “wait until the puck drops” and I said “of course”. I heard him say ‘we’ll go’, maybe he was talking to McQuaid or I have no idea. But, I thought it was, obviously thought it was go time.”

      Thornton added Tuesday night on Comcast Sports Net that he wanted to fight Weise because he was among the players who jumped him when he was drastically outnumbered 3:54 into the game.”

      VA:F [1.9.16_1159]
      Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
  13. stathead
    January 10, 2012

    Oh, thanks for explaining. That makes more sense, though I’d kind of give the benefit of the doubt as a misunderstanding myself. Actually, if a player offers to fight, then belatedly realizes that he’s risking breaking his own team’s momentum and galvanizing the opponents or similar, I’d respect him more for refusing to go and taking the flac than for going ahead with it. But then I’m not a guy and don’t know the unwritten rules. FYI Chaps, we’d also prefer if you not pretend to be defending OUR honour when some guy makes a nasty comment about your wife/mother in order to push your buttons and start a fight.

    VA:F [1.9.16_1159]
    Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
  14. iceman
    January 10, 2012

    I don’t like Weise backing out from fighting Thontorn even though it’s understandable.

    All the more reason to miss Ryp…

    VA:F [1.9.16_1159]
    Rating: +3 (from 3 votes)