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Canucks Slump Without Ballard, Is Ballard The Key?


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#1 ChuckNORRIS4Cup

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Posted 15 March 2012 - 01:04 AM

I have a feeling that not having Ballard in the lineup is actually effecting this team more than I originally would of thought. It seems ever since Ballard has been out of the lineup this team has been in a bad slump, and their defensive game just BLOWS. I don't get the opportunity anymore to watch the games during the week since I work a night shifts now, but I listen to it on the radio and come home to see the highlights. All I ever hear is the other team coming down on breakaways time and time again, 2 on 1 and 3 on 1, I see the highlights and it looks like the D are running around with their heads cut off.

I just kinda find it bizarre that ever since Ballard has been out, this team has been in a huge slump. When Salo was injured and missed some games because of the Marchand hit, I saw the same thing with this team, the D fell apart, and I'm seeing the same thing now since Ballard has been out of the lineup. Maybe Ballard is the missing part to this team, even if he doesn't score offensively like he was expceted to do, but doing his job and keeping the D in core and just knowing where to be defensively seems to be what this team is actually missing.

Record since Ballard has been out!
GP = 17
W = 9
L = 8

46 goals scored and 44 goals allowed!
5 of those games had to go to a shoot out or overtime.

Edited by ChuckNORRIS4Cup, 15 March 2012 - 01:14 AM.

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Trevor Linden Quote Nov. 29th 2012 [Asked if he would return to the game?]
"The game has been with me for a long time, if the right opportunity came about, you never know"


#2 Ghostdivision

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Posted 15 March 2012 - 01:05 AM

All I will say is i thought he played very well after a slow start to the season, it was very unfortunate he got injured because i felt he was finally playing good before he got injured. He was fighting, he was defending, he was moving the puck well.

Any idea or time frame for his return?

Edited by Ghostdivision, 15 March 2012 - 01:06 AM.


#3 ButterBean

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Posted 15 March 2012 - 01:12 AM

Yeah, most people don't notice but Ballard does the little things pretty well. Blocking shots, keeping an active stick, and winning puck battles. Sometimes he can just get carried away by trying to do too much with the puck. It's gonna be very nice to have him back alongside Tanev, they played really well together.

#4 Toni Zamboni

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Posted 15 March 2012 - 01:27 AM

so what if ballard came back and they were still slumping...whats our excuse then...were running out of people to pin it down on.

its not anyone person, our whole team is in a minor funk.
they can be brilliant at times and we are so pumped about them, and then they lose and we look for answers like it was this guy or that guy...or we call up this guy or scratch that guy.
I dont think we are hitting near enough, when our big guys are throwing big checks we can own the opposition....and YES Ballard will be welcomed back when he is out there throwing his big checks too.

#5 dura_mater

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Posted 15 March 2012 - 01:48 AM

This would explain why the Sedins haven't been scoring.

Edited by dura_mater, 15 March 2012 - 01:49 AM.

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#6 Jai604

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Posted 15 March 2012 - 02:44 AM

Bally was sure playing well before he got injured, but the team's lack of success cannot be completely attributed to his absence.

RIP LB RR PD


#7 kmotamed

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Posted 15 March 2012 - 03:15 AM

Or maybe not having Tambellini with us anymore if finally starting to catch up...? =P

#8 Eddie Ikea Lack

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Posted 15 March 2012 - 04:09 AM

Bring back Cody please.

#9 Buckmin

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Posted 15 March 2012 - 04:18 AM

So does this mean we like Ballard again now??? Help me, I am so confused now, why you make this thread!!!!
"Luongo had his worst year and won the Olympic Gold. And he can't win if he is at his best?"

#10 DownUndaCanuck

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Posted 15 March 2012 - 06:33 AM

Ballard's presence on this defence is actually very underrated. Not only has he proven to us that it is key to have a veteran on our 3rd pairing, but we often forget that he is such a veteran and has played in many NHL games before, so this may be similar to the Salo-effect.

When Salo is out of the lineup, the entire defence crumbles including younger guys like Edler and Bieksa in particular. Now Salo may be fine, but we're missing a key part of our defence in Ballard who is as much a veteran as Salo is in terms of NHL experience, and it is likely that having 2 full-time AHLers like Gragnani and Tanev on our bottom pairing is leaving guys like Bieksa and Edler with more responsibility in terms of positioning and communication which they simply aren't used to.
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#11 Clinch16

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Posted 15 March 2012 - 07:05 AM

Bring back Cody please.


Seriously?

Why don't you go and compare his stats against Sulzer's since the trade?

You'll find if you take his poster off your bedroom wall it will be easier to let go.
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#12 Bodee

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Posted 15 March 2012 - 07:24 AM

Ive said the same for a long time. An in form Ballard, playing on his natural side is imperative for our SC chances. I also saw him and Tanev as a key to our defensive depth.

Both are cool smooth and not easily rattled.........but Ballard also has a "nasty" side to him and you need that playing with a gifted rookie.
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#13 Opmac

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Posted 15 March 2012 - 08:04 AM

It's something I've said before, the Canucks system is based around clogging up the neutral zone and the blueline to force the opposing team to dump the puck in. The defenceman then retrieve the puck and the Canucks attack with speed through the neutral zone whether that is by having the centreman circle around the net, the defenceman lugging it up, quick short passes, or a stretch pass.

Keith Ballard is our best defenceman at lugging the puck, although he coughs it up on occasion, and has great vision when it comes to the pass.

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#14 D-Money

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Posted 15 March 2012 - 08:13 AM

Record since Ballard has been out!
GP = 17
W   = 9
L    = 8

46 goals scored and 44 goals allowed!


That's a GF/GA average of 2.71/2.59. Our average for the year is 3.03/2.43.

Our goals for are down far more than our goals against are up. So the issue is more about offense than defense. And I'm pretty sure missing Keith Ballard, with his 14 points in 122 games as a Canuck, isn't the reason for that.

Edited by D-Money, 15 March 2012 - 08:14 AM.

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#15 GoNucksGo7

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Posted 15 March 2012 - 08:18 AM

Ballard really is a good defencemen. He just get a bad rap becaues of the contract, but theres no doubt he helps our defense. Can move the puck, plays physical. Exactly what we need in our 5 and 6 defensemen. We are missing him believe it or not.

#16 Bang Bang Boogie

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Posted 15 March 2012 - 09:00 AM

Ballard would definitely be better option than Gragnani right now.
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#17 Opmac

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Posted 15 March 2012 - 09:06 AM

That's a GF/GA average of 2.71/2.59. Our average for the year is 3.03/2.43.

Our goals for are down far more than our goals against are up. So the issue is more about offense than defense. And I'm pretty sure missing Keith Ballard, with his 14 points in 122 games as a Canuck, isn't the reason for that.

You need defencemen that can move the puck out of the defensive zone efficiently to score goals. Keith Ballard could help with that. The past few weeks the Canucks have had troubles getting the puck out.

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#18 ChuckNORRIS4Cup

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Posted 15 March 2012 - 01:09 PM

This would explain why the Sedins haven't been scoring.

Even though your trying to be sarcastic your some what right! Ballard is another D who knows how to move the puck out of the zone and be offensive and it is effecting the Sedins without him in the lineup!

Eh8NO.jpg

Trevor Linden Quote Nov. 29th 2012 [Asked if he would return to the game?]
"The game has been with me for a long time, if the right opportunity came about, you never know"


#19 ChuckNORRIS4Cup

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Posted 15 March 2012 - 01:11 PM

Ballard would definitely be better option than Gragnani right now.


Ya I can agree with that forsure, last night I saw a highlight on one of the goals and Gagnani was beat and didn't know what to do he just stood there like wtf are you doing atleast move to the puck just don't stand their and watch the other team score, it was pathetic.

Eh8NO.jpg

Trevor Linden Quote Nov. 29th 2012 [Asked if he would return to the game?]
"The game has been with me for a long time, if the right opportunity came about, you never know"


#20 Smashian Kassian

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Posted 15 March 2012 - 01:25 PM

Ballard's presence on this defence is actually very underrated. Not only has he proven to us that it is key to have a veteran on our 3rd pairing, but we often forget that he is such a veteran and has played in many NHL games before, so this may be similar to the Salo-effect.

When Salo is out of the lineup, the entire defence crumbles including younger guys like Edler and Bieksa in particular. Now Salo may be fine, but we're missing a key part of our defence in Ballard who is as much a veteran as Salo is in terms of NHL experience, and it is likely that having 2 full-time AHLers like Gragnani and Tanev on our bottom pairing is leaving guys like Bieksa and Edler with more responsibility in terms of positioning and communication which they simply aren't used to.


Not to critize a good post or anything but Ballard is younger than Bieksa.
Bieksa is 30, the only D man older than him is Salo.

Now to acctaully respond I think Hes kinda more of a Vet than Bally, a Bigger Leader in our room but
Im getting tired of his Risky play, Ballard hasn't been as risky this year as he was last year, he has been more smooth and Safe but it seems like Bieksa has been really risky and not always making the Play he should, perfect example is when we broke Detriots Streak.

On Helm's goal Bieksa tried to do a toe Drag on the Blue line, lost it to helm and there away on the 2 on 1, when Juice could have just played it back down the boards quickly like he should have.

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#21 Stefan

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Posted 15 March 2012 - 01:28 PM

No. When Daniel sedin got injured 2 years ago, you could make a case for him being "the key".
If I remember correctly we still performed well.
A slump is a slump, Ballard will never be the reason we win or don't win. He's an alright player, but he doesn't make the impact to ever be the missing link, or the cause of victory.

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#22 Canucksbiggestfan

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Posted 15 March 2012 - 01:44 PM

I was thinking the same thing. When Ballard is in the line up it provides stability to the back end and let's the forwards play a more offensive game. Maybe it has something to do with Ballard, but maybe it doesn't. We will see what happens when he comes back.
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#23 ChuckNORRIS4Cup

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Posted 15 March 2012 - 01:58 PM

From being unable to crack the lineup with an 11th-place team, to quarterbacking the power play on a Presidents Trophy contender, it’s been a strange trip for Marc-Andre Gragnani.


Read more: http://www.theprovin...l#ixzz1pDlMy6RZ



Just found this kind of funny how this guy couldn't crack the lineup in Buffalo where they need scoring, but he comes to our team and is on the 1st PP unit. I think Buffalo had it right this guy shouldn't be in the lineup yet, he still needs more time in the minors, stupid RFA rules.

I think it took AV about what a full season before he allowed Ballard to play on the PP, but Gragnani is allowed to play the PP his first game with the Canucks. Even when Ballard had showed on previous teams he can have offensive numbers. In Ballards first NHL season he had 39 points, then 27 and then 21 and then 34 and then 28 and then he was traded to Vancouver and had 7 points, but he wasn't given PP time. But a young kid who couldn't even crack an a 11th place teams lineup get's 1st PP unit minutes bizarre coaching.

Edited by ChuckNORRIS4Cup, 15 March 2012 - 02:03 PM.

Eh8NO.jpg

Trevor Linden Quote Nov. 29th 2012 [Asked if he would return to the game?]
"The game has been with me for a long time, if the right opportunity came about, you never know"


#24 D-Money

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Posted 16 March 2012 - 07:33 AM

Ballard is "the key" to freeing up 4.2 million of cap space for next year.

That is all.
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