The 2012 Development Camp Invitees: Defence (Part 1)

The Canucks have cast a wide net in their summer development camp, inviting an astonishing number of undrafted and unsigned players to attend. While the camp is now over, that doesn’t mean that the Canucks relationship with these invitees is likewise over.

Several of the invitees, at least the ones that won’t be heading to college in the fall, are likely to also attend prospect training camp, with an opportunity to make it to main camp and earn a contract. As for the players that are heading to college, they now have a (hopefully) positive experience with the Canucks that may influence who they sign with once they’re done with the NCAA.

I have already introduced you to the goaltenders and the (many) forwards. Now it is time for the defencemen, highlighted by size, size, and more size. Also, a former Oilers’ draft pick with promising offensive upside.

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Weird Crafts: this ‘Wizardous Sedinerie’ quilt is the best quilt we’ve seen all day

Weird Crafts is one of our absolute favourite features, but we don’t get a lot of opportunities to use it because neither Daniel nor myself are overly crafty. (Our wives are, though. Note to our wives: be more Canuck-oriented with your craftiness.) That means this feature depends on us going out in search of interesting Canuck crafts on the Internet, or, even better, people sending us cool stuff they made.

We prefer to be sent the crafts, since it involves fewer forays into the bewildering twin River Styxes that are Etsy and Pinterest, with souls reaching out to us from the deep, imploring us to check out their human hair doilies and placenta prints and whatnot. Crafts such as those, while weird, are A) too weird for our tastes, and B) not Canuck-related and therefore, thankfully, not applicable.

(Hmm. I guess if someone did a Canuck-related placenta print, we’d blog about it. Please don’t do that.)

Anyway, here’s a much less disgusting craft: it’s a Canuck-themed quilt, sent to us from Val of Maple Leaf Quilters. It looks downright cozy. Also, it totally says “Wizardous Sedinerie” on it. Not “Sedinery”, which is the usual spelling, but “Sedinerie”, the PITB-specific original alternate spelling. Check it out:

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Canucks show signs of organizational Florence Nightingale effect, re-sign Ebbett, Pinizzotto

A day after the Canucks made a big splash late in unrestricted free agency, snagging hometown blueliner Jason Garrison, they re-found their thriftiness and dove into bargain bin, re-signing forwards Andrew Ebbett and Steven Pinizzotto to two-way deals.

It’s appropriate that the Canucks announced these two signings at the same time. While Ebbett and Pinizzotto are very different players, they both have something important in common.

(No, it’s not surnames littered with double consonants, although there’s that too. Nor is it the fact that their post-signing tweets are almost identical.)

It’s that, thanks to unlucky seasons shortened by upper-body injuries — Ebbett gruesomely broke his clavicle in Boston and Pinizzotto never played a game due to recurring shoulder problems — the free agents had little negotiating power, which meant they could be had on the cheap. After Marco Sturm and Byron Bitz last year and now Ebbett and Pinizzotto, it’s clear that Mike Gillis loves a good bargain (or is a descendant of Florence Nightingale), so these signings were right within his wheelhouse.

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Garrison signs with Canucks, is right man for the job

When Sami Salo signed with the Tampa Bay Lightning, Canucks fans collectively freaked out for about two-and-a-half hours. I saw many cursing Mike Gillis’s name, calling for him to be fired, and lamenting in the streets in sackcloth and ashes. Then Aaron Rome signed with the Dallas Stars and some fans began to wonder if the Canucks would have any defencemen at all next season or whether the plan was to keep Roberto Luongo not as a backup to Cory Schneider but as a shot-blocking specialist on defence.

That’s the problem with the frenzy of July 1st: everyone expects something instantaneous. When the Canucks didn’t sign any free agents as soon as the sun rose and the rooster crowed, the impatience of the social media generation shone through. Not only was the sky falling, but dogs were also marrying cats. The Fraser River turned to blood, frogs rained down from the sky, and a swarm of locusts invaded downtown Vancouver and immediately began complaining about the bike lanes.

It was pandemonium. It was chaos. It was the apocalypse.

Then the Canucks signed Jason Garrison and everyone calmed the heck down.

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Farewell to a fan favourite: Salo signs with Tampa Bay

Sami Salo has been one of the best Canucks defencemen for a full decade. He joined the Canucks in 2002 in a trade with the Senators for Peter Schaeffer. While he battled injuries and never played a full 82-game regular season, he was a steady, reliable presence with a howitzer of a slap shot, who made the team better when he was in the lineup. He was also a humble guy with a great sense of humour and incredible character. In coming back from injuries that would have ended the career of a lesser man, he was an inspiration to his teammates and his fans.

Salo was one of my favourite players and he just signed a two-year contract with the Tampa Bay Lightning. He won’t be retiring a Canuck.

And it’s okay.

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The 2012 Development Camp Invitees: Forwards (Part 2)

It may be Free Agent Frenzy, but the Canucks’ 2012 prospect development camp is still in full swing. The prospects have gone dragon boating, learned proper nutrition with a cooking class, and, of course, hit the ice for plenty of drills. Yesterday, we looked at 5 of the 11 invitee forwards at the camp. Here are the remaining 6, highlighted by a pair of goalscorers from the NCAA and the WHL.

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