DownUndaCanuck, on 09 November 2012 - 02:47 AM, said:
Yes, injuries was the reason we lost, but how do you get injured? By being continuously pounded, whacked and slashed after the whistle consistently by all of their lines. Boston injured us by physically wearing us down with their big defencemen and we had no one to dish it back to them.
In any playoff series, the winner is often the team that survives. This is mostly how we beat Chicago that year - the Blackhawk stars were targetted repeatedly and despite them coming back, at the end of the day we wore them out more than they did to us.
Now look at Los Angeles. They breezed to the Cup because of their size across all lines, which meant they consistently hit their opponents and physically broke them down. The biggest difference between these Cup winners and the Canucks in 2011 was eventually our inability to do so. We had the Sedins responsible for scoring, Kesler responsible for scoring and hitting, a great 3rd line that was throwing around their weight and scoring timely goals but an INVISIBLE 4th line and worst of all - absolutely no size on our blueline. We cannot have one physically imposing (Edler) defenceman and expect to win a Cup and NO Bieksa and Hamhuis are not hard hitters when you compare them to the likes of Chara, McQuaid, Ference, Boychuk, Mitchell and Matt Greene who are physical beasts.
I'm sorry but I've never seen Patrick Kane, Hossa or Justin Williams throw a hit in my life. Even Kopitar and Toews are rarely throwing hits. Every team has their skilled guys who focus purely on scoring, the reason Cup winners succeed is because these skilled guys are complemented by physical monsters when on the ice.
Consider Kane. When his line is on the ice, so are Seabrook and Keith so no one messes with him.
Consider Kopitar. When he's on the ice, so are Mitchell and Brown.
Consider Krejci. When he's on the ice, so are Chara and Lucic.
Now look at the Sedins. When they're out there, they have Alex Burrows, Bieksa and Hamhuis. Hamhuis doesn't have a mean bone in him, especially on the ice and Bieksa and Burrows are quite frankly too small to scare or hurt anyone when compared to the guys above.
The Canucks need size and muscle, especially on the blueline. Yes Kassian will help, but he's not on the ice most of the time. Our biggest, #1 problem since 2011 has been lack of big, physical defenders and it will continue to be the reason we fall in the playoffs to teams with towers on the blueline. The key to success is skill up front to score and physical checkers on the blueline to wear down opposing forwards in the playoffs. We DON'T need more bulky, unskilled forwards, our forward core has a perfect mix right now, let's just focuss on turning this puck-moving, pinching and fragile defence into a rock-sturdy, no-mistake defence.
Not disputing we lacked size, have said that we need that before, and that the Kassian deal was smart for that reason. As you may have seen in my post I mentioned having a "Kassian in his prime" for that reason.
The injuries that happened are bad luck not an issue of size. Hamhuis made a terrific hip check on Lucic, but was unstable and hurt his hip. You can argue well its bec Lucic was so much bigger, maybe the cause maybe not. A hip check is about leverage, not size, Hammer had the leverage and didn't have control on the back end and hurt something.
Kesler's hip/groin issues were also not about size. Everyone has a groin, he tore it.
Ehrhoffs wrist was not about size, it was about slashes, teams slash everyone, get it in a bad place it gets hurt, size doesn't make a difference.
See my point? And given we had a 2-0 lead with all those injuries and Boston's none, my guess is we would have won if that situation was reversed.
Now if you're implying if we were bigger we could go injure Boston well that's silly. Injuries are part of sport and bad luck for the most part, they aren't determined by size differential unless you're head hunting.
Now, would size have helped. Absolutely, it would have allowed better oppty's for the Sedins to have space, get to the net, get to rebounds etc. But most teams have a tough time getting through Chara and he didnt come off the ice very much, not to mention Thomas just completely stood on his head.
We do need to get bigger, both up front and especially the back end. But was it the cause of the injuries and loss? No way.