It’s been all quiet on the Pacific Northwestern front ever since the Canucks’ season ended, which makes sense, for a number of reasons. Trevor Linden still has a lot of reading to do, for one thing, catching up on the six years he spent away from the game. (Any moment now he’s going to get to 2011, at which point one assumes his love of Boston will dissipate in a hurry.)
For another thing, considering the way the year ended, you can understand why the Canucks might want to lay low for awhile, hold up somewhere safe, have a nice cold pint, and wait for all of this to blow over. (How’s that for a slice of fried gold?)
But as good as the Canucks inactivity is for those running the show, it’s much less so for those of us running this blog. There’s nothing to talk about. There’s nothing going on. It’s a nightmare.
Fortunately, in times like these, there’s always plan C. The “C” stands for controversy. Let’s create one, and then talk about it like it matters.
In a recent game of dodgeball with the kids at the Grandview Boys and Girls Club after-school drop-in, Zack Kassian’s complete level was questioned.
“You can throw a little bit harder,” said a small boy, evaluation Kassian’s performance after the match, “Because sometimes you throw it and it bounces.”
Everybody who’s ever played dodgeball knows that the ball is dead the moment it hits the ground, so letting the thing bounce is just terrible technique. But it’s even more dire than just ensuring Kassian plays the right way. Apparently, it’s bouncing because he’s barely putting anything into his throws. It’s a wonder the balls even cross the centre line.
There are two ways to look at this. On the one hand, Kassian might just be holding back because he doesn’t want to take a kid’s head off. But on the other hand, Kassian’s tendency to have off-games may literally have drifted into another game entirely. If Kassian’s bad habits on the ice are beginning to show themselves in games of dodgeball involving kids, where he should dominate, then fans have every reason to be concerned.
Asked on the radio if he’d ever consider a return to the flying skate logo, Trevor Linden said he wouldn’t rule it out.
Look. Considering the current trajectory of the team, there’s probably no more appropriate time to re-adopt a logo that’s pointed downhill. And I understand that we’re enamoured with all things 1994 right now. I also get that Linden’s primary job, far more than hiring a new GM, is saying vague things that will get fans excited. But I’m sorry. Do the Canucks not have enough third jerseys already? They basically have two right now — the stick in rink, and the Millionaires duds (which should probably be retired, since nothing good ever happens in them).
This raises some alarming questions: is Linden considering a switch to the skate full-time, and if so, what is Trevor Linden’s beef with the orca? Does he hate orcas? Has Trevor Linden ever gone on record as saying he doesn’t hate orcas? He has not, and that’s concerning. The blackfish is a staple of the Pacific Northwest. If Linden hates these majestic creatures, how can be he trusted to represent the best interests of our hockey team? I submit that he cannot.
Manny Malhotra is a nominee for the Masterton trophy, after overcoming the Canucks giving up on him.
Malhotra’s story is an inspiring one. After the Canucks effectively told him his career was over, he turned around, said, nah, and worked his way back to the bigs. From the NHL:
Malhotra, 33, was the Vancouver Canucks‘ Masterton nominee in 2011-12 after returning from a serious eye injury suffered the season before. Refusing to believe his NHL career was over last fall, Malhotra signed a professional tryout agreement with the Charlotte Checkers, Carolina’s American Hockey League affiliate, on Oct. 3 and signed as a free agent with the Hurricanes four weeks later. He appeared in 69 regular-season games, assumed a leadership role in serving as an alternate captain and ranked second among all NHL players in face-off percentage (59.4%).
Basically, Malhotra is up for this award for proving the Canucks wrong. The Canucks were wrong, and I am outraged about it. I demand answers into how they could misevaluate Malhotra so. I call their entire player evaluation system into question! Show us the tapes!