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King of the ES

The Tide Has Turned in Vancouver: A Prediction

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King's got a great sense of humour and all, but this thread is failing to live up to it's potential.

What seems like a whole page of mod talk has all but lost sight of the prophesy.

An ode to Gallagher!

Hey King - what do you see in your cards for the Leafs this year?

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I find it rather telling for those that have bashed the OP, humiliated him and even denigrated him.

He raised some rather pertinent ,if not prescient issues regarding the club.

Personally,I feel that this team should secure a playoff berth without more problems but I do sense troubles getting out of the gate and matching up to SC contending clubs without a real second line.

Spector,a senior columnist and journalist,actually paid to write about hockey,presented the near textbook photocopy of the King's offering:

Spector on Canucks: Is Vancouver still a contender?

Mark Spector | January 16, 2013, 2:25 pm

Twitter @SportsnetSpec

The question surrounding the Vancouver Canucks has for some months been, is the window closing on this group's Stanley Cup aspirations?

Any more injuries and the queries will shift to, should the Canucks even be in the Stanley Cup conversation anymore?

Ryan Kesler -- gone for better than a month, after his third surgery in two years.

David Booth -- spent the lockout hunting bears instead of readying himself to track down the Bruins, then couldn't even make it through the first workout. His groin is shot -- his credibility remains on I.R. as well -- and he's out a month-and-a-half.

That means no second line to start the short, 48-game season in Vancouver, when it was depth and high-end skill that took the Canucks to the Cup in '11.

Even head coach Alain Vigneault had lost his sense of humour somewhat when he addressed the media on Tuesday, sans the winks and one-liners that often punctuate a Vigneault news conference.

"My job is to play with the players who are available to our team and we've got quite a few hockey players available, good hockey players," Vigneault said. "Like we've always done, we're going to find a way to make this work."

There is a school of thought that suggests Vancouver's injury woes could expedite a Roberto Luongo trade, but we see it from the opposite angle. If the offers did not please GM Mike Gillis' eye before the Booth injury was announced, they're not apt to get any better now that he's in a position of weakness.

Though it must be said, with his situation at forward, a poor start could strip Gillis of his ability to remain patient.

It's amazing, isn't it, how a club can go from Game 7 of a Stanley Cup final to the position the Canucks are in so quickly?

Entering a 48-game season minus Kesler and Booth -- with names like Mikael Samuelsson, Christian Ehrhoff, Sami Salo and the constant threat that was the menace Raffi Torres now in the rearview mirror -- how do you look at these Canucks the same way we did only a few months ago?

Nobody has better goaltending, with Luongo and Cory Schneider, but how long can Gillis sit on a backup of Luongo's caliber when his needs at forward are so acute?

As for the second line, we can't improve on how Jason Botchford worded it in the Vancouver Province: "When you start calling any combination of Zack Kassian, Andrew Ebbett, Mason Raymond and (Jordan) Schroeder a second line, others are going to label you desperate."

Of that group, only Raymond is a legit second line NHL player. And he's a No. 5 or 6 forward on a good team. Kassian, Ebbett and Schroeder have 207 NHL games between them, and the latter two are 5-foot-9 or shorter.

So the formula that was once in place -- where lines 2-4 were adept enough to draw the penalties that the Sedins would capitalize on -- is in jeopardy.

The Canucks No. 1 line used to wear out the opponent's top defensive pairing. And there is no reason to think that will stop.

But does Vancouver still have the advantage when the second and third lines hop the boards against second and third D-pairings? That advantage has vastly diminished, if it exists at all.

Is the unit of Chris Higgins, Maxim Lapierre and Jannick Hansen a legit second line? Or more of a third unit, when you consider that all third- and fourth-line players back in the spring of '11?

What about preparedness? Vancouver had almost nobody playing overseas or in the AHL, save for Schneider's eight games in Switzerland.

Will Jason Garrison be ample replacement for Christian Ehrhoff or Sami Salo, two mainstays the last time Vancouver was a playoff winner. Can he close a 5-on-3 as Salo used to, with one of the finest one-timers in the game?

Or does he work out the way the last two acquisitions from Florida have for Gillis, as Keith Ballard and Booth have both been expensive flops.

Inside the Northwest Division, Minnesota is a tougher foe this season, and Edmonton will likely take a few points from the Canucks that, over the past many seasons, have been a lock for Vancouver.

It is the team in blue and green that is the problem for Canucks fans right now, however. A team that was supposed to be more than a one-year wonder Cup contender.

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I must confess I too was a little taken aback that some Canucks turned down the opportunity to swan through Europe this summer.

The south of France is simply exquisite in late June.

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I find it rather telling for those that have bashed the OP, humiliated him and even denigrated him.

He raised some rather pertinent ,if not prescient issues regarding the club.

Personally,I feel that this team should secure a playoff berth without more problems but I do sense troubles getting out of the gate and matching up to SC contending clubs without a real second line.

Spector,a senior columnist and journalist,actually paid to write about hockey,presented the near textbook photocopy of the King's offering:

Spector on Canucks: Is Vancouver still a contender?

Mark Spector | January 16, 2013, 2:25 pm

Twitter @SportsnetSpec

The question surrounding the Vancouver Canucks has for some months been, is the window closing on this group's Stanley Cup aspirations?

Any more injuries and the queries will shift to, should the Canucks even be in the Stanley Cup conversation anymore?

Ryan Kesler -- gone for better than a month, after his third surgery in two years.

David Booth -- spent the lockout hunting bears instead of readying himself to track down the Bruins, then couldn't even make it through the first workout. His groin is shot -- his credibility remains on I.R. as well -- and he's out a month-and-a-half.

That means no second line to start the short, 48-game season in Vancouver, when it was depth and high-end skill that took the Canucks to the Cup in '11.

Even head coach Alain Vigneault had lost his sense of humour somewhat when he addressed the media on Tuesday, sans the winks and one-liners that often punctuate a Vigneault news conference.

"My job is to play with the players who are available to our team and we've got quite a few hockey players available, good hockey players," Vigneault said. "Like we've always done, we're going to find a way to make this work."

There is a school of thought that suggests Vancouver's injury woes could expedite a Roberto Luongo trade, but we see it from the opposite angle. If the offers did not please GM Mike Gillis' eye before the Booth injury was announced, they're not apt to get any better now that he's in a position of weakness.

Though it must be said, with his situation at forward, a poor start could strip Gillis of his ability to remain patient.

It's amazing, isn't it, how a club can go from Game 7 of a Stanley Cup final to the position the Canucks are in so quickly?

Entering a 48-game season minus Kesler and Booth -- with names like Mikael Samuelsson, Christian Ehrhoff, Sami Salo and the constant threat that was the menace Raffi Torres now in the rearview mirror -- how do you look at these Canucks the same way we did only a few months ago?

Nobody has better goaltending, with Luongo and Cory Schneider, but how long can Gillis sit on a backup of Luongo's caliber when his needs at forward are so acute?

As for the second line, we can't improve on how Jason Botchford worded it in the Vancouver Province: "When you start calling any combination of Zack Kassian, Andrew Ebbett, Mason Raymond and (Jordan) Schroeder a second line, others are going to label you desperate."

Of that group, only Raymond is a legit second line NHL player. And he's a No. 5 or 6 forward on a good team. Kassian, Ebbett and Schroeder have 207 NHL games between them, and the latter two are 5-foot-9 or shorter.

So the formula that was once in place -- where lines 2-4 were adept enough to draw the penalties that the Sedins would capitalize on -- is in jeopardy.

The Canucks No. 1 line used to wear out the opponent's top defensive pairing. And there is no reason to think that will stop.

But does Vancouver still have the advantage when the second and third lines hop the boards against second and third D-pairings? That advantage has vastly diminished, if it exists at all.

Is the unit of Chris Higgins, Maxim Lapierre and Jannick Hansen a legit second line? Or more of a third unit, when you consider that all third- and fourth-line players back in the spring of '11?

What about preparedness? Vancouver had almost nobody playing overseas or in the AHL, save for Schneider's eight games in Switzerland.

Will Jason Garrison be ample replacement for Christian Ehrhoff or Sami Salo, two mainstays the last time Vancouver was a playoff winner. Can he close a 5-on-3 as Salo used to, with one of the finest one-timers in the game?

Or does he work out the way the last two acquisitions from Florida have for Gillis, as Keith Ballard and Booth have both been expensive flops.

Inside the Northwest Division, Minnesota is a tougher foe this season, and Edmonton will likely take a few points from the Canucks that, over the past many seasons, have been a lock for Vancouver.

It is the team in blue and green that is the problem for Canucks fans right now, however. A team that was supposed to be more than a one-year wonder Cup contender.

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Don't be too hard on King - they don't have tides over there in Chicago.

Oh, the tide just turned back...

Hey King: tides have a way of doing that.

Twice a day lol.

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I find it rather telling for those that have bashed the OP, humiliated him and even denigrated him.

He raised some rather pertinent ,if not prescient issues regarding the club.

Personally,I feel that this team should secure a playoff berth without more problems but I do sense troubles getting out of the gate and matching up to SC contending clubs without a real second line.

Spector,a senior columnist and journalist,actually paid to write about hockey,presented the near textbook photocopy of the King's offering:

Spector on Canucks: Is Vancouver still a contender?

Mark Spector | January 16, 2013, 2:25 pm

Twitter @SportsnetSpec

The question surrounding the Vancouver Canucks has for some months been, is the window closing on this group's Stanley Cup aspirations?

Any more injuries and the queries will shift to, should the Canucks even be in the Stanley Cup conversation anymore?

Ryan Kesler -- gone for better than a month, after his third surgery in two years.

David Booth -- spent the lockout hunting bears instead of readying himself to track down the Bruins, then couldn't even make it through the first workout. His groin is shot -- his credibility remains on I.R. as well -- and he's out a month-and-a-half.

That means no second line to start the short, 48-game season in Vancouver, when it was depth and high-end skill that took the Canucks to the Cup in '11.

Even head coach Alain Vigneault had lost his sense of humour somewhat when he addressed the media on Tuesday, sans the winks and one-liners that often punctuate a Vigneault news conference.

"My job is to play with the players who are available to our team and we've got quite a few hockey players available, good hockey players," Vigneault said. "Like we've always done, we're going to find a way to make this work."

There is a school of thought that suggests Vancouver's injury woes could expedite a Roberto Luongo trade, but we see it from the opposite angle. If the offers did not please GM Mike Gillis' eye before the Booth injury was announced, they're not apt to get any better now that he's in a position of weakness.

Though it must be said, with his situation at forward, a poor start could strip Gillis of his ability to remain patient.

It's amazing, isn't it, how a club can go from Game 7 of a Stanley Cup final to the position the Canucks are in so quickly?

Entering a 48-game season minus Kesler and Booth -- with names like Mikael Samuelsson, Christian Ehrhoff, Sami Salo and the constant threat that was the menace Raffi Torres now in the rearview mirror -- how do you look at these Canucks the same way we did only a few months ago?

Nobody has better goaltending, with Luongo and Cory Schneider, but how long can Gillis sit on a backup of Luongo's caliber when his needs at forward are so acute?

As for the second line, we can't improve on how Jason Botchford worded it in the Vancouver Province: "When you start calling any combination of Zack Kassian, Andrew Ebbett, Mason Raymond and (Jordan) Schroeder a second line, others are going to label you desperate."

Of that group, only Raymond is a legit second line NHL player. And he's a No. 5 or 6 forward on a good team. Kassian, Ebbett and Schroeder have 207 NHL games between them, and the latter two are 5-foot-9 or shorter.

So the formula that was once in place -- where lines 2-4 were adept enough to draw the penalties that the Sedins would capitalize on -- is in jeopardy.

The Canucks No. 1 line used to wear out the opponent's top defensive pairing. And there is no reason to think that will stop.

But does Vancouver still have the advantage when the second and third lines hop the boards against second and third D-pairings? That advantage has vastly diminished, if it exists at all.

Is the unit of Chris Higgins, Maxim Lapierre and Jannick Hansen a legit second line? Or more of a third unit, when you consider that all third- and fourth-line players back in the spring of '11?

What about preparedness? Vancouver had almost nobody playing overseas or in the AHL, save for Schneider's eight games in Switzerland.

Will Jason Garrison be ample replacement for Christian Ehrhoff or Sami Salo, two mainstays the last time Vancouver was a playoff winner. Can he close a 5-on-3 as Salo used to, with one of the finest one-timers in the game?

Or does he work out the way the last two acquisitions from Florida have for Gillis, as Keith Ballard and Booth have both been expensive flops.

Inside the Northwest Division, Minnesota is a tougher foe this season, and Edmonton will likely take a few points from the Canucks that, over the past many seasons, have been a lock for Vancouver.

It is the team in blue and green that is the problem for Canucks fans right now, however. A team that was supposed to be more than a one-year wonder Cup contender.

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I actually somewhat agree with ES. I don't predict the Canucks will miss the playoffs, but I think they could easily miss the playoffs if they're not careful. Let's be honest, our offence is going to probably suck without Booth/Kesler. You don't throw out potentially 50-70 goal pace scoring (pace as in a full season) between the two without a bit of a slide in the standings. People think Schroeder and Kassian are going to make up for those goals? Not going to happen until they get way more experience.

If the Canucks have any success this season we're going to have to be lights out on defence. I think that's quite possible though, with Garrison, Schneider and our depth D-signings, it could happen. I just don't expect the Canucks to have high end offence with basically one line capable of putting up serious points.

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Why should I be banned for this? And how is this trolling? I'm making an opinion - which I've backed up with reasons.

Deb, I take it that you don't often get out of your CDC bubble, but I assure you that this a pretty common opinion amongst people elsewhere. Listen to the radio. Read newspapers. A lot of people have high concerns about this team. I happen to be one of them.

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Spector is from Toronto, I find most of the media guys their know little to nothing about our team (Just look at Damien cox earlier today)

Perhaps he is just saying that so he doesn't have to write a story about how much the Leafs suck, and would rather pile some negativity on the top team in the country.

If it was someone who I know follows the team and actually knows what's going on (And isn't a bonehead) then I would put some merrit into it, but this guy just seems to Leaf biased to me to really put any heavy consideration into it.

After all it is just his opinion, no greater than yours or mine, and his opinion comes from afar away vantage point.

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I hope you are wrong, but your prediction points are all reasonable.....unless MG works some magic.

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The king of the ES is actually Tony Gallagher in disguise :shock:

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In a sentence, I am officially predicting that the Vancouver Canucks will MISS the playoffs in 2013.

Here's why:

-Goaltending fiasco. Don't care about PC responses from the players or the GM, this will be a major distraction that will have an adverse effect on team morale. Awkward locker room. Poor allocation of cap dollars. I've said for a long time that the Canucks really missed the boat by not trading Schneider for something that could've seriously helped up in a Cup run last year, and it will for a long time be a regret of ours, IMO. Whatever we get for Luongo will be unexciting and we'll still have a relatively unproven goalie backstopping an alleged "team built to win now". Not a good combination.

-Complacency. Why didn't anybody go to Europe? Practicing with the UBC team is hardly an adequate preparation for the season. Makes me think that this bunch has largely lost their hunger. A 5-game post-season exit last year adds credence to this thought. By not going to Europe/Russia, the message in essence is that they'd rather stay in their posh Vancouver homes than be bothered to go try and compete to help stay sharp. Not a good sign. Of course, this doesn't include everybody, but the vast majority of the team chose to not play hockey in the downtime. I expect it to cost them.

-Calgary has gotten better. Added good scoring depth in Hudler, and late-season acquisition Cammalleri. Got rid of Jokinen, which is addition by subtraction. Got a proven PP QB in Wideman. Most importantly, a new coach. Would not surprise me at all to see the Flames win the division, somewhat like the Canucks did in '06-'07, out of nowhere and under AV's rookie year behind the bench.

-Edmonton has gotten better. Justin Schultz is going to be a star. I like the Fistric acquisition a lot. Dubnyk was very good at the Spengler Cup. Heavy momentum going into the year. Key guys are already in mid-season form.

-Minnesota has gotten better. Granlund, Parise, & Suter should all have an immediate and material impact.

David Booth's injury announcement yesterday just makes me more confident that this is one of those years where essentially everything's going to go wrong for the Canucks. The Jason Garrison signing is also one that I was/am vehemently against. Don't expect it to turn out good. Sami Salo's presence on the back end will be sorely missed.

And no, I am not "hating", so please don't suggest that I am. This is an opinion of mine that I am fully entitled to. Feel free to debate and/or include your own prediction.

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Spector is from Edmonton Smashian.

He was spoiled rotten by the Oil and Eskimos - and then obviously turned very bitter lol, when his expectations came crashing back to earth at the end of the 80s....

His two favorite pastimes are taking shots at the Canucks, and taking shots at the Flames. Naturally.

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Alright I was wrong, still from what I have seen of him (which has been alot lately) he doesn't see Canuck-Friendly or even Canuck-respectful, as you say he loves taking shots at us.

Again if it was someone who follows this team closely and isn't a bonehead who likes being negative/doesn't know what they are talking about (Say Farhan Lalji, the guy seems great) Then I would give the article some consideration, but putting 100% stock into something written by someone who isn't even close enough to assess to the situation fairly and accurately beyond face value, doesn't seem like an accurate "source" to me.

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Spector is entertainment - not credibility. The majority of his own readers flame him all the time. His style is highly opinionated as opposed to 'reasonable' and convincing - and he likes to use hooks to incite responses. It sells. He can be entertaining. He can be annoying. I don't take him very seriously. You never know what'll be the next thing out of his mouth. Sometimes 'serious' and 'respectful' - on the other hand, i if you read what he has to say about "Rats"...

My personal favorite is his Open Letter to Canucks fans. Very entertaining - and imo a rather appropriate shot at people who complain too much about Luongo.

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Can't wait to bump this thread in late April

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