It’s time for part 2 of the Canucks bandwagon fan cheat sheet, the guide to bluffing your way through an evening with a group of actual, diehard Vancouver hockey fans. Don’t let yourself get caught thinking the Sedins are the same person. They only sort of are!
Yesterday, we went over management, the goaltenders, and the defence. Today we take you through the Canucks’ forward lines. Get a pen. You’ll want to write all of this on your hand.
About: David Booth wears no. 7 and plays right wing. He’s hurt right now, and a return would be “a miracle”, so don’t expect to see him. Here’s what you’re missing: a guy that’s great at getting the puck into the offensive zone. You’ll notice I didn’t mention scoring. That was on purpose.
Nickname(s): Grizz, John Wilkes, Falcor-Hater, Shooter McKilly
My wife thinks he looks like: Jeff Spicoli.
If he touches the puck, the next to touch is the glass behind the goal, where his shot will go.
Expect to hear: “Oh, Booth…”
Don’t expect to hear: “Am I the only one that loves it when Booth tweets photos of stuff he’s killed?”
About: Burrows wears no. 14. He plays the wing, mostly on a line with the Sedins. His primary job is to get the puck to someone who looks like a Sedin, then camp out in front of the crease and scurry back and forth like a drug-addled rodent. He’s not all that well-liked around the league and tends to get penalties just for existing.
Nickname(s): Burro, Burr, Bitey, Frack, Dragonslayer,
My wife thinks he looks like: This mysterious little kid.
If he touches the puck, it’s probably after about nine Sedin touches.
Expect to hear: “Back to the penalty box for Burr.”
Don’t expect to hear: “You know who’s not clutch? Burrows.”
About: Ebbett wears no. 25 and plays centre. He’s a depth forward. Somehow, he plays almost every game, though. I think Alain Vigneault has just forgotten him in the lineup.
Nickname(s): Ebby, Ebber, Ebra Messing, Ebbola, Ebbony and Ivory, Ebbelepsy, Andy
My wife thinks he looks like: A tiny, slightly more balding Chris Martin.
If he touches the puck, you probably won’t notice. He’s basically hockey’s Ann Veal.
Expect to hear: “Ebbett’s the third line centre tonight. I… I just don’t understand sometimes.”
Don’t expect to hear: “Every single one of Ebbett’s shifts tonight was memorable.”
About: Hansen wears no. 36 and plays wing, usually either on the second or the third line. He’s a speedy, tenacious forward that can surprise defenders with a sudden burst of energy. One time, he crosschecked a ref and got away with it. He was once thrown out of a game because he could not be calmed down.
Nickname(s): Honey Badger, Danish Ninja, Beaker, Honninggrævling
My wife thinks he looks like: The Sherminator.
If he touches the puck, it’s anybody’s guess what will happen next. He could make an incredible play. He could fire the puck at a linesman’s face on purpose. He could throw it away, then hop the glass and open a cupcake stand. No one knows.
Expect to hear: The sound of howling dogs, who can hear Hansen’s voice even when you can’t.
Don’t expect to hear: “And now, please enjoy the soothing, dulcet tones of renowned orator Jannik Hansen.”
About: Higgins wears no. 20 and plays wing. Like Hansen, you’ll likely find him on line 2 or 3. He’s one of the club’s hardest-working forwards, especially along the boards. He is the only man that has ever been bitten by a zombie and lived.
Nickname(s): Higgs, Chiggs, Higgs-Boson, Higgy, Kiss Huggins, Abs, Abby, Downton Abbey, OMG Abs, Abs Abs Abs
My wife thinks he looks like: The man Corey Feldman’s character in “Stand By Me” grew up to be.
If he touches the puck, hope it’s in his feet. He uses his feet to protect the puck and move it along better than just about anybody.
Expect to hear: “Put Higgins with Roy. No wait. Now Kesler is struggling. Put Higgins with Kesler. No wait.”
Don’t expect to hear: “You know who should do a few crunches? Higgins.”
About: Kassian wears no. 9 and plays the wing, anywhere from the first to the fourth line, depending on whether he makes Alain Vigneault’s coffee correctly or not. He’s a big body with soft hands, but he’s still developing into the player he occasionally shows signs of being. Insanely photogenic.
Kassassin (Redacted for legal reasons), Mama Kass, Kassper the Friendly Ghost, Kasster Oil, Kass Kass Bang Bang
My wife thinks he looks like: A young Vincent D’Onofrio.
If he touches the puck, it’s probably the first period. He’ll be stapled to the bench by the third.
Expect to hear: “AV is completely misusing Kassian.”
Don’t expect to hear: “Sometimes I think Kassian is a bit too committed to grooming.”
About: Kesler wears no. 17 and plays centre or wing on the second line. He was injured to start the season, then broke his foot as soon as he returned. At times, he will go into beast mode and dominate a game, but he sometimes has a tendency to try to do too much himself.
Nickname(s): Kes, Astro Boy, Frick, Keslurker, Bull
My wife thinks he looks like: Jim Halpert.
If he touches the puck, he will drive hard through the neutral zone, then try to deke out four opponents at once, which won’t work, but oh man, what if it did?
Expect to hear: “Ah! Please stop blocking shots, Kesler, we need you healthy!”
Don’t expect to hear: “You know, I don’t think Kesler actually cares about winning.”
About: Lapierre wears no. 4o and plays centre, mainly on the fourth line but occasionally on the third. He is very, very French. He’s mainly an agitator/forechecker, but has also emerged as a shootout specialist this season. He never stops smiling, which always makes it look like he’s up to no good, which is appropriate, as he usually is.
Nickname(s): Lappy, Lappy 486, Mad Max, Madder Max, Maddest Max, Carefree Max, The Pierre, Maximillian
My wife thinks he looks like: Oded Fehr.
If he touches the puck, then he just dumped it into the corner. This will happen no matter where he is on the ice.
Expect to hear: “Why isn’t Lapierre centring the third line instead of Ebbett?”
Don’t expect to hear: “Just another reason why Lapierre is the front-runner for the Lady Byng.”
About: Pinizzotto wears no. 13, which is appropriate because he’s super unlucky. The 28-year-old fourth liner only just recently played his first NHL game, due in large part to injuries that knocked him out of the lineup pretty much any other time he could. When he’s on his game, he’s an effective checkers and agitator. I don’t know that Canucks fans have ever see him on his game.
My wife thinks he looks like: The Situation.
If he touches the puck, cheer for him, because this has only happened two times, to our knowledge.
Expect to hear: “Who’s that guy?”
Don’t expect to hear: “Remember when the Canucks waived Aaron Volpatti to make room for this guy? I’m glad they did, because Pinizzotto is my favourite player.”
About: Raymond wears no. 21 and plays left wing, generally on the second or third line. He’s known for skating fast and falling down when he skates too fast, so you can see the problems this creates. In 2011, he had his back literally broken during the playoffs, so going throughout this playoffs with an intact spine will be a big improvement.
Nickname(s): MayRay, The Ray, Luis Mendoza
My wife thinks he looks like: Matthew Gray Gubler.
If he touches the puck, he will go around the outside of the rink like it was Eminem.
Expect to hear: “Raymond’s got to start crashing the net more often.”
Don’t expect to hear: “Raymond’s got to start surfing the net more often.”
About: Roy wears no. 15 and plays center, usually on the third line. He was acquired at the trade deadline from the Dallas Stars. He’s a skilled player — not overly big, but fleet of foot and shifty. Known to wear pink spandex for fun.
Nickname(s): Royzie, Roy G. Biv, Death Scythe
My wife thinks he looks like: A tiny Will Ferrell.
If he touches the puck, he’ll look to make a slick pass through traffic.
Expect to hear: “We like Roy!”
Don’t expect to hear: “Put Roy with the Sedins. They need someone who will stand up for them.”
About: Schroeder wears no. 45 and plays in the middle. Like Roy, he’s a smallish centre. Unlike Roy, he’s not a regular. Schroeder may draw in later on in the postseason if Alain Vigneault wants an upgrade on whatever the heck Andrew Ebbett is doing.
Nickname(s): Shredder, Shreddies, Jay-Schray
My wife thinks he looks like: Young Jared Rushton. (Billy from “Big”.)
If he touches the puck, you’re probably watching a fourth line shift. That you PVR’d in February.
Expect to hear: “Ebbett again. Who does Schroeder have to kill to get into the lineup? Wait, nevermind. It’s Ebbett. He has to kill Ebbett. Stupid question, my apologies.”
Don’t expect to hear: “I would describe Jordan Schroeder as a less dynamic Andrew Ebbett.”
About: Daniel wears no. 22 and plays left wing on his brother, Henrik’s line, but before you think they came to resemble one another through years of player together — no. They are twins. Daniel is the more goal-oriented of the two, and also his head is slightly more angular, if you’re looking for ways to tell them apart.
Nickname(s): Danny, Dank, Assistant Captain Hook, Brother Daniel, Red Panda
My wife thinks he looks like: Henrik Sedin
If he touches the puck, expect wizardry.
Expect to hear: “Henrik. To Daniel. To Henrik. Back to Daniel. Scores!”
Don’t expect to hear: “I think Daniel might be more effective playing with someone else.”
About: Henrik wears no. 33 and plays centre. He’s the captain of the Canucks, and the highest-scoring player in franchise history.
Nickname(s): Hank, Heniel, Captain Hook, Captain Marvel, Henny Penny
My wife thinks he looks like: Daniel Sedin
If he touches the puck, he will pass it. Wide-open net? He’ll pass it. He shot the puck into the net? No. He passed it into the net.
Expect to hear: “That pass was ridiculous.”
Don’t expect to hear: “Once Henrik gets into open ice, he’s gone. He has breakaway speed.”
About: Sestito wears no. 29 and plays “guy who punches other guys”. He’s a 6’5″, fourth line enforcer claimed off waivers from the Philadelphia Flyers. He plays like a guy you got for free. This one time he scored.
Nickname(s): Sesty, Sestitov, Sestina
My wife thinks he looks like: Mark Ruffalo.
If he touches the puck, he’ll drop his gloves and start punching it, like he does to anything else that touches him.
Expect to hear: “Sestito is big.”
Don’t expect to hear: “Sestito is useful.”
About: Weise wears no. 32 and plays right wing. During the NHL lockout, he went to the Netherlands to play with the Tilburg Trappers and was a superstar in the Dutch league, scoring 22 goals and 48 points in 19 games. In the NHL, however, Weise is a fourth line grinder who is responsible defensively and can occasionally throw a big hit. He’s surprisingly fast, winning the fastest skater competition at this years Canucks SuperSkills.
Nicknames: Greasy, Weasel, Dutch Gretzky, Dutch Lindros, The Flying Dutchman
My wife thinks he looks like: Horror writer H.P. Lovecraft.
If he touches the puck, he’ll momentarily think he’s still in Tilburg and try to make a dazzling offensive play before dumping it in the corner to start a line change.
Expect to hear: “What a great hit by Weise!”
Don’t expect to hear: “A big power forward with a right-handed shot? Put him with the Sedins!”