How Andrew Alberts lost his job to a guy with one career NHL game

The Canucks left a lot of fans scratching their heads when they claimed Ryan Stanton off waivers from the Chicago Blackhawks on Monday. The move squeezed Hunter Shinkaruk out of the roster, forcing the club to send him back to the WHL, dismaying many excited fans and belying Mike Gillis’s indication that this year’s team would see an injection of youth. Furthermore, it flew in the face of John Tortorella’s announced intention to start the season with only seven defencemen.

Stanton certainly didn’t look like an NHLer, and his career NHL game totals — one — did little to convince us otherwise. We wondered if Mike Gillis had worked himself into a somnambulistic stupor over a busy weekend. It really didn’t make a lot of sense to give this guy the precious 23rd roster spot.

But as it turns out, he didn’t get the 23rd roster spot. Andrew Alberts did (or maybe Tom Sestito). At Wednesday’s practice, Stanton was skating on the third pairing with Chris Tanev, an indication that he’ll be there on Thursday’s opening night while Alberts and Yannick Weber get scratched like they just adopted kittens.

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On the eve of opening night, five awesome Canucks pump-up videos

From the Cory Schneider trade, to the hiring of John Tortorella, to the will-he-or-won’t-he of Roberto Luongo’s return to Vancouver, Canucks fans have had a pretty stressful off-season. Thankfully, come Thursday, the off-season will officially be over, as the Canucks kick off their 2013-14 season against the San Jose Sharks on the road.

We wouldn’t be surprised, however, if the events of the off-season (not to mention our season preview roasts) left you lacking a little in the pumped-up department. With the regular season kicking off, it won’t do at all if Canucks fans are only half-pumped, or worse, not pumped at all. That’s why we at PITB are happy to present five pump-up videos to provide a proverbial double-pump of Pumpkin Spice in the latte of your Canucks fandom.

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New Van Fan, Season 2: Slept Away

New Van Fan is a web-series that follows the adventures of long-time Canucks fan Dan as he attempts to bring novice Canucks fan Andreas up to speed. The whole thing may or may not be an excuse to point out the inherent silliness of this fanbase — we’re not quite sure. Have an idea for an episode? Suggest it in the comments.

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Guest Post: Canucks 2013-14 season preview, by Five For Howling

There have been some big changes for the Canucks this offseason, but the one that could have the most impact is realignment, which brought an unfortunate end to the crack den that was the Northwest Division and threw the Canucks into the far more functional and together Pacific Division. Bummer.

But let’s not dwell on what’s lost. Let’s look to the future and meet some of our new divisional buddies! We’ve invited a stable of Pacific Division bloggers to preview the Canucks season, the new division, or their own teams for us here at Pass it to Bulis, and over the next week, we’ll be sharing the results with you. (Warning: most of them chose to roast us, which is probably what we would have done.) Next up: Phoenix Coyotes blog Five For Howling.

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