Denmark needs Jannik Hansen

Jannik Hansen is one of only two Vancouver Canucks at the 2012 World Championship, but he’s not the only player from the NHL on Team Denmark. He is, however, one of Denmark’s top players and one of the most important. That has already proven to be true just three games into the tournament.

Hansen was named Denmark’s best player of the game in a 2-0 loss to the Czech Republic, finishing the game with 4 shots on goal from the second line. He also received a 2-minute minor for boarding that turned into a one-game suspension, causing him to miss Denmark’s game against Italy on Sunday.

While 2-0 was a solid result against a team like Czech Republic, the most important games for Denmark at this tournament are against teams like Italy, who they will be battling to avoid relegation. Unfortunately for Denmark, they seemed to sorely miss Hansen against Italy, losing 4-3 in overtime.

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Canucks extend Mike Gillis; Alain Vigneault to follow?

The long awaited, much-ballyhooed meeting between Mike Gillis and the Aquilini Ownership group has taken place, and we have news to report: the Canucks’ General Manager has emerged from this meeting … still the Canucks General Manager.

The team announced Monday that Gillis’s contract as president and GM of Canucks Sports and Entertainment has been extended, although the duration of the new contract was not announced.

(This leaves the door wide open for endless speculation over the term. Is it a two-year extension? If it a 50-year extension!? There’s simply no way of knowing.)

I don’t have much to say about Gillis’s extension by itself. I’ve gone on record many times as saying I like the guy, so I’m happy to see him remain in charge. He’s made some mistakes in his time — with two years to evaluate it, we can safely say the Keith Ballard trade has been a bust, and the David Backes/Steve Bernier offer sheet scenario was a bit of a fiasco, in retrospect — but I like the way he runs the team overall, from the emphasis on advanced stats and other metrics, to the way the team manages the cap, to the way he and his assistants are always scheming bend the rules of the Collective Bargaining Agreement.

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