Jannik Hansen “could not be calmed down,” receives one-game suspension from IIHF

The middle of the summer is the last time an NHLer expects to receive supplementary discipline. But that didn’t stop Jannik Hansen, who received a one-game suspension from the International Ice Hockey Federation on Friday. It is yet further proof that Hansen is the Honninggrævling – the Danish Honey Badger – particularly when you read the IIHF’s description of his transgressions.

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I Find This Video Odd: Jannik Hansen’s teammates attack him with tape

If you want proof that Ryan Kesler is a strong leader in the Canucks dressing room, consider the growth of interview ruining in the team. It started with Kesler’s obsession with Keslurking, but he started recruiting his teammates earlier this season, ruining Aaron Rome’s moment in the sun.

Now the team has started ruining interviews even when Kesler isn’t around, attacking Jannik Hansen with rolled up balls of hockey tape as he talked to Joey Kenward prior to Thursday’s clash with the Red Wings.

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Video: Jannik Hansen gets Gene Simmons to sign his stick during warmup

Jannik Hansen may be one of about a million billion athletes that’s been given the honey badger nickname by fans, media, and teammates since that Youtube video went viral, but just because the nickname has become a huge cliché doesn’t mean it’s a poor fit for his personality. Truth is, like his animal namesake, Hansen does and takes what he wants.

Case in point: last Sunday night versus the Anaheim Ducks, while he was skating around in warmup, Hansen saw Gene Simmons sitting by the glass, and screw it, he wanted an autograph right at that very moment. So, you know, he just skated over and got one because Jannik Hansen don’t care.

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Jannik Hansen just got Keslurked

It’s official: Ryan Kesler has an addiction. Only two days after going on a Keslurking spree at the 12th annual Sports Celebrities Festival — a spree that, for many, might satisfy the urge to bomb for quite awhile — Kesler was right back at it, Keslurking Jannik Hansen’s postgame interview with Joey Kenward.

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After an offseason that saw bigger names going out from Vancouver than coming in, it’s clear that the Canucks are counting on their most substantial improvements coming from the young players already within the organization. With that in mind, PITB looks at the three top candidates for Canucks’ breakout player of the year — Chris Tanev, Jannik Hansen, and Cody Hodgson — and what it would take for them to earn the mantle.

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“Third Man In” would make a good movie title. I can see it now: Qris Johnson is…the Third Man In.

This week, Qris takes a cold, hard look at Jannik Hansen, a warm, soft look at potential Ehrhoff replacements, a lukewarm, “what’s up” look at Vegas odds for next year’s Stanley Cup, and a piping-hot, fresh-out-of-the-oven look at offer sheets.

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With the news today that the Canucks and Jannik Hansen avoided the ugly squabble and dish-throwing of arbitration comes the beautiful realization that fans can look forward to three more years of frenzied forechecking, possessed penalty killing, and delightful high-pitched interviews. At a $1.35 million cap hit, Canucks fans should be thrilled. I’m thrilled. Why aren’t you thrilled? You should be.

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Jannik Hansen was a delight in 2010-11, though it wasn’t usually for his goalscoring ability. In his first full season with the Canucks, Hansen was a revelation on the third line, forechecking with fervor, killing penalties with aplomb, and speaking in a delightful high-pitched monotone. With 29 points, Hansen finished tied for 10th on the team in scoring, but his contributions far outweighed his offensive numbers.

In recognition of his awesomeness, Hansen was given the Fred J. Hume award as the team’s unsung hero. Both Kevin Bieksa and Alexandre Burrows are previous recipients of the award and have gone on to more marquee success; of course, Steve Bernier also won the award, so make of that what you will.

In the midst of all his fantastic work as a role player, Hansen found the time to chip in 9 goals, matching his career best. Hansen is a far cry from a finisher, so don’t expect many pretty ones.

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With free agency looming on July 1st, Mike Gillis still has some work ahead of him before he can take a brief vacation. We have already taken a look at the unrestricted free agent defensemen and forwards from the Canucks roster, and they will certainly be his first priority, but there are a few restricted free agents that will need to receive qualifying offers or raises. While the danger of losing any of these RFAs to another team in free agency is minimal as the team can match any offer sheet, such offer sheets can drive up the price of these players, making it more difficult to work within the salary cap.

Two of the Canucks’ RFAs were important contributors to their playoff run and will certainly require some attention prior to July 1st: Maxim Lapierre and Jannik Hansen.

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The Canucks went into game 2 of their opening round playoff series with the Blackhawks hoping to do something they had failed to do in two previous tries: win the damn game. They succeeded, too, although it was no picnic, perhaps because this isn’t the National Picnic League. Tonight’s Blackhawks had more jump, more grit, and more offense than the Chicago team from two nights ago, but unfortunately, they didn’t get to play the Chicago team from two nights ago. They played the Canucks, who had more jump, more grit, and more offense than tonight’s Blackhawks. I watched this game:

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After a promising playoff debut in 2007, Jannik Hansen couldn’t seem to stay healthy long enough to improve on it. For two seasons, he drifted in and out of the lineup, never managing to play more than 60 games and failing, in consecutive years, to put together enough quality performances to successfully argue to the Canucks that he was worthy of a long-term investment. This offseason, he only managed to avoid a second consecutive one-year, two-way contract by taking the team to arbitration, where the award was guaranteed to be one-way. But, even with that minor victory, Hansen still had to settle for another one year, sub-seven figure deal, and I’m sure he longs for the day when he can go into an offseason knowing he won’t have to negotiate a new deal without leverage.

That day is nearly here. This season, Hansen survived the entire campaign, and his long-awaited breakout season finally took place. Though the offense has yet to arrive (Hansen failed to crack 10 goals for the third straight year), his other contributions were paramount: he led the team in hits, was first among wingers in takeaways, and became a staple on the Canucks’ third line and penalty kill. For his tireless work, he was named the team’s “Unsung Hero” for the regular season.

There appears to be no threat of a postseason regression, either, as Hansen put in a stellar performance in last night’s playoff opener. He was all over the ice, earning second star honours after registering four shots, five hits, and a breakaway goal (above). Unsurprisingly, it would appear his tight-checking, detail-oriented, defense-first game is tailor-made for the postseason.

Unfortunately, it’s also tailor-made to get noticed in the postseason, and Hansen is a restricted free agent.

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Last night was a bewildering stinker, the likes of which we haven’t seen in months, and it makes sense. While the Canucks didn’t throw in the towel, there was literally no motivation for them to play hard last night, apart from the fact that it was the right thing to do. The game meant nothing to them. Meanwhile, the Oilers were motivated. For them, a Hockey Night in Canada tilt against the best team in hockey (and a team they thoroughly despise), is reason enough to go all out. They did, too: the Oilers played a fabulous game, and unfortunately for Vancouver, this admirable effort coincided with the Canucks laying down a complete turd. I watched this turd/game:

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Canucks 4 – 2 Capitals Just like their previous two games against the Rangers and Islanders, the Canucks outshot their opponents in the first period. Unlike the last two games, the Canucks continued the trend in the second, and it made all the difference. They came out of the first two periods with a two-goal [...]

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Two of these guys are in line for some sweet trophy action. Having reached the halfway point of the season, now seems a good time to reflect on its first half, and to forecast who might be in line for a year-end trophy. In this post, PITB takes a look at the four major awards, [...]

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Canucks 4 – 1 Leafs Leading up to this game, the 4pm start time was a bone of contention among Canucks fans. Ever afraid of The Eastern Bias, an elusive swamp monster (pictured) that feeds on national inequality, many claimed the afternoon puck drop gave the Maple Leafs an unfair advantage. But thankfully, the Canucks [...]

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