I have a problem with giving a free pass to a player who's largest question mark is his ability to work hard. For me he starts on the 4th and is told work you but off or your back in Chicago, outwork everyone and you will move up the lines.
Edit: why are we talking about this in a Lou topic?
I've been a long time fan of the Vancouver Canucks; long enough to observe certain things that have changed, such as our hate for Russians; pre-Burke, there was Bure, Larionov and others. Burke brought this mentality to the Canucks and its fans.
I would say the same manifestation of an idea has occured regarding the Kassian situation; that all players must work themselves into the lineup from the 4th line up. This idea makes absolutely no sense. The Sedins didn't start on the 4th line, not even the third. Bure neither. Sometimes, a specific player bringing a specific skill must be given the chance to practice a specific role. If there is no one in the organization willing to fight when one of the Sedin is manhandled, and Kassian is the only one willing to do the job, especially as the above mentioned being the reason why the Hodgson trade occurred in the first place, then I do not believe he ought to be prevented from having access, opportunity, and time to adjust to the position. In a sense it is the same as the situation it was with Hodgson; he was a waste of time on the third and fourth line but he could have been extremely productive at 2C with patience and support, perhaps as projected, becoming the next Captain of the Vancouver Canucks.
Not every man is created equal. One can see this in our education system too. All throughout the academic organization, kids to adults are forced to conform to a standardized, one size fits all program which in turn, makes for dropouts, lesser grades, as well, and most importantly, prevents the true creative senses of individuals from being developed, from engineering to arts, while emphasizing the development of the left brain in a world where ever advancing technologies are specifically designed to replace left hemisphere tasks.
If Kassian is the "next Bertuzzi", well groom him as the next Bertuzzi, not the next fourth liner.
If Moneyball is about getting specific players for specific positions because they fit that position in terms of production/ cost, then having Kassian on the third and fourth line is yet another waste of time as he will not develop his raw talent.
Burrows got much better than projected as an undrafted player, in part and mostly due to the fact that he has played with the Sedins for so long, learning their tendencies and adapting to their play. Not necessarily in age but in talent, one could argue that there was a mentor/ pupil essence between the Sedins and Burrows. Burrows can most likely play on any top six of any team by now. Since the Sedins are not getting any younger, I don't see any reason why Kassian should be prevented from accessing the same learning curve Burrows was given, except for the coach and his bend for favoritism and status quo.
The sooner Kassian is put on that line, the faster he becomes the next best power forward and the better he gets by playing with the Sedins.
How does this relate to Luongo? If Kassian defends the Sedins on a full-time basis, the Sedins score more as space and respect is created. The Sedins score more, Luongo shuts the door during the playoffs because the opposition becomes tentative and are faced with scoring threats, as well as the threat of retribution. As of now, the opposition is not scared.
The Canucks are a well oiled machine with all its parts perfectly functioning in unison. One part falls, the whole system falls apart. A lack of playoff scoring, a lack of timely toughness, a lack brotherhood between players, a lack of respect to whom may be the best Captain in the history of the Canucks and Linden and Naslund were no slouch, can be a massive detriment to the overall system of success the Canucks have established.
Or we can ignore all of that, focus our attention on a distraction like bringing in a rookie goaltender to lead a President's Trophy team, and ultimately, ship out he who may be the only one to a Stanley Cup, or two, this decade.
Edited by Canucks_Hockey_101, 05 January 2013 - 05:38 PM.