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van_can_man

Our defense lacking leader

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No we clearly do not. This team plays 6 games without Sami Salo and we have one of the worst defences in the league. Sure we don't have one star that carries the defence, but they aren't working well by committee which is the issue - they need a veteran presence desperately because guys like Hamhuis, Bieksa, Edler and Garrison are not veterans, they're defencemen in their prime. We need a guy who's played in this league a much longer time, and that was Salo. He'd seen it all. These guys haven't.

As for Ballard yes he's played ok, but he's paired with our best defenceman. You take away Tanev and he becomes our worst in an instance. So yes, Tanev is doing a great job with Ballard. He has turned this pathetic excuse for a defenceman into a decent 3rd pairing guy. You forget how badly he played without Tanev, and how he would be barrated for his poor play. Now Tanev comes along and fixes up his game perfectly.

Basically, we have 4 panicky guys on defence and 2 calm, cool and collected defenceman - Hamhuis and Tanev. We used to have Salo in that mix as well, giving us a set of perfect pairs: Tanev would settle Ballard down, Hamhuis would cover for Bieksa and Salo would help Edler play a more solid game. Now we have a mismatch with Garrison instead of Salo, who is even less experienced than Edler.

Barker and Vandermeer have been in this league a lot longer than some of our guys, I say throw Vandermeer in to see his effect on our other defencemen. This is why I was pushing so hard for Hal Gill or Allen - they would have fit this niche perfectly.

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:picard:

Ballard without Tanev >>>>>>>>>> Bieksa without Hamhuis

Ballard struggled for one year, last year he got alot better and from the 2nd half of the season on he has only been consistently solid, and since the playoffs has been our best defensemen, Tanev is great I absolutely agree but if you watched the Chicago wolves games you would know he isn't fool proof, as he struggled early on, basically the same thing Hamhuis is going through right now.

I find it funny that the excuse for Ballard playing well is "that he is playing with Tanev" Yet no one ever acknowledges Bieksa is absolute crap without Hamhuis and even with Hamhuis he manages to play terrible most of the time.

Is some instances I agree, but the way this defense is struggling isn't because Sami left, Bieksa and Edler have always been inconsistent, not sure what is happening with Hammer but my guess is he is regaining form after the lockout, Garrison is adjusting to the new system and aside from some bad turnovers has been alright, Ballard and Tanev have stepped up and become our #1 5 on 5 pair.

It's 6 games in, wait till mid way through the season, this is a veteran group that has grown together and faced adversity, we just need to make a coaching change IMO then we will see this team play the way they can.

Oh and Hamhuis, Ballard and Bieksa are all 30 or older, so I don't know how they aren't veterans: (Hamhuis: 30) (Bieksa, 31) (Ballard 30)

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This team has never had a legitimate Norris Candidate. Maybe Edler will wake up and realize he "could" be if he wanted to.

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Edler will never be a Norris candidate as long as he gives pucks away in front of the net and screens his own goalie.

The Norris usually goes to the defenseman who is a total package. Then again somehow Karlsson won over Weber. So maybe there is hope for defensemen that are weak in their own zone but score goals on a healthy powerplay. Who knew?

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We have a very veteran blue line apart from Tanev. They dont lack leadership, they lack form. If this team lacks anything, other then Kesler and Booth, its size/toughness.

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We have a very veteran blue line apart from Tanev. They dont lack leadership, they lack form. If this team lacks anything, other then Kesler and Booth, its size/toughness.

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:picard:

Ballard without Tanev >>>>>>>>>> Bieksa without Hamhuis

Ballard struggled for one year, last year he got alot better and from the 2nd half of the season on he has only been consistently solid, and since the playoffs has been our best defensemen, Tanev is great I absolutely agree but if you watched the Chicago wolves games you would know he isn't fool proof, as he struggled early on, basically the same thing Hamhuis is going through right now.

I find it funny that the excuse for Ballard playing well is "that he is playing with Tanev" Yet no one ever acknowledges Bieksa is absolute crap without Hamhuis and even with Hamhuis he manages to play terrible most of the time.

Is some instances I agree, but the way this defense is struggling isn't because Sami left, Bieksa and Edler have always been inconsistent, not sure what is happening with Hammer but my guess is he is regaining form after the lockout, Garrison is adjusting to the new system and aside from some bad turnovers has been alright, Ballard and Tanev have stepped up and become our #1 5 on 5 pair.

It's 6 games in, wait till mid way through the season, this is a veteran group that has grown together and faced adversity, we just need to make a coaching change IMO then we will see this team play the way they can.

Oh and Hamhuis, Ballard and Bieksa are all 30 or older, so I don't know how they aren't veterans: (Hamhuis: 30) (Bieksa, 31) (Ballard 30)

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The defense will pick it up i am not too worried we have all seen these slow starts in the past. I am not liking it but i am not panicking though.

Garrison has been getting better and once the powerplay players get sharper he will get his points.

Hamhuis has been a step behind and has looked very shaky but when he is on which is almost always he is our best all all around.

Bieksa has been medium good and shaky but once Hamhuis gets better i am sure Bieksa will be his usual solid self.

Tanev has been awesome and that time spent on the Wolves has helped his game and clearly the best is yet to come in his very bright future.

Ballard has been solid and looks like his speed and mobility has been helping him a lot while most others have looked much slower then usual.

Edler has looked brutal especially defensively but lots of errors in the offensive zone fighting the puck big time. Edler is on one long bad run of defensive hockey and as far as i have ever noticed will always be his problem and will stop him from ever being a great defensemen. He has been bad all over the ice including not throwing any big hits.

Edler has always worried me the most of all our defensemen and unfortunately he has never done anything to prove me wrong.

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Last year Bieksa fought four times in 78 games. He's already fought twice in 6 games. He also leads our D in hits. I'd say he's stepping up. I thought he and Tanev were our best two d-men tonight. Edler is in his 7th pro season, Bieksa in his 8th, and Hamhuis in his 9th. It's not like we're running our D on raw rookies.

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I agee with you totally. To get out of the west the Canucks will have to get past the Sharks, Ducks, Kings, Blues and Hawks. These teams have just as much skill and speed however they are much bigger and more aggresive...

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Just chillax, the only thing you can comment on this early in a season with injuries etc is the level of effort the guys are putting out. Over and above that critiquing and evaluating players performances is like dissecting a loss...Everything seems to go wrong in a loss, yet the opposite is true in a win. When your offense sucks your defense is also going to be pressured more to score and will be less defensively responsible. Our whole structure is thrown off right now, saying we don't have a defensive leader is ridiculous when its the same crew minus Salo that went to the cup finals, and Salo was not the leader of that group!

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I agee with you totally. To get out of the west the Canucks will have to get past the Sharks, Ducks, Kings, Blues and Hawks. These teams have just as much skill and speed however they are much bigger and more aggresive.History shows that the Canucks chances are not that good playing against physical teams in a prolonged playoff run.

MG needs to drop a few pieces and live up to his statement about getting younger and bigger.

I sure miss the days when they had an intimidating player to give the skill guys some room.

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Yet oddly enough going into the finals against the B's three Canucks were being talked about as playoff MVP. Lou, Henrik and Bieksa. Yup, the guy sucks.

I think some of you are still stuck on the Bieksa hate from three, four years ago. Get over it. None of our d-men are elite level so don't expect any of them to play like it. If they were they'd be making in that 8 to 10 million the others are getting. All of our top four are good -dmen who signed for less than they could get elsewhere. Try to find any UFA d-man that puts up 40 or 50 points for the money Bieksa and Edler signed for. Mission Impossible. Even guys like Weber make mistakes. Hell, after 6 games he has ZERO points and is -1. Is he garbage now???

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Thanks for the conjecture. Unless you can provide a quote from a reputable source your statement about Bieksa being considered MVP is laughable, especially considering it would have been Kesler. Unless you didn't see the Nashville series in 2011?

This team needs an elite defender. If you can't see that, I can't help you and your addiction to stats. Bieksa is sloppy. Prove me wrong. And please don't use the San Jose clincher as proof of Bieksa's greatness. That puck basically fell in front of him with no one even knowing where the puck was. He isn't a game changer and never will be. Tanner Glass could have made that shot.

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