The current situation is a fall out from the 2011 Finals.
It's clear to anyone watching that two things have happened since the Finals that have affected the Canucks confidence.
Both things essentially come from not being able to trust the Refs. It seems that the either playoffs are not suited for the Sedins or the Refs want a different style of play from teams in the playoffs.
Until the 2011 finals against Boston, the Sedins were scoring and teams were getting penalized for holding or slashing them. The Boston series changed everything including it seems the Refs opinion of the Canucks and the Sedins.
Suddenly it was okay to manhandle the Sedins, to crosscheck them from behind or pin them against the boards without getting penalized. The Sedins play stopped being effective because they couldn't cycle the puck anymore and the fall out was the other lines lost confidence in overall team scoring. If the 1st line can't score, then how can they win games?!
Another fallout from the Boston series is that the Canucks got labelled as fakers, divers and "girls", so Refs stopped calling plays that should have been penalties. I think the Canucks did start dramatizing things in the Boston series, but primarily because the Refs didn't seem to notice all the stuff Boston was doing.
Yesterday's game highlighted the influence of the Boston series.
- The Sedins were again manhandled, pinned against the boards and crosschecked from behind - no penalties and the Sedins eliminated offensively.
- Borderline calls against Vancouver as a result of Refs thinking the Canucks embellish or that they play dirty.
- Holding the puck call against the Canucks, but a SJ player holds the puck in the net and it's not a penalty or a penalty shot, yet somehow the play is whistled dead. Clearly you can see the player grabbing the puck as it's crossing the line.
Of course, I'm only adding to critics comment that we blame the Refs instead of playing the game. The problem is that Refs or the NHL are making it clear that they don't want a Canadian team in the finals due to bad ratings and they want a Boston or LA style team in the finals.
I'm guessing the Sedins are considering retirement rather than continue playing, because the Refs / NHL clearly don't like their style of play in the playoffs. So why bother continuing....
I agree. But its a no win situation criticizing the refs. They know it and we know it. So they are laughing. But you can't ignore the facts. Alex Burrows with the most minor penalties in the season. I don't know if this is a first, but how many times is the leading scorer on a team the most penalized player in the league? And don't you think this may have an adverse effect on our top line with so many chinsy penalties called against one of the key players on that line? I think its pretty obvious that the Auger Brotherhood is still holding their collective grudge.
On one hand it is fruitless to blame the refs for losses. But on the other hand, they can have a major impact on who wins a series. A ref can make 10x as many calls if he wants to with all the hooking and holding and interference, on both sides. So its a job of discretion for the most part. So why did the Sharks get 4 penalties and Canucks get 11 in that last game?
And its also what is NOT called. A Sharks player actually picks up and throws a puck and its not called?..yet Henrik gets called for batting the puck back after a face-off?
I think it may be a snowball effect. Burrows like the team, has gained a reputation, earned or not, so the refs know that this is a team that deserves to call penalties on. So they do. I don't even know if it changes if we revamped the whole lineup. This ref bias may go back to Bertuzzi. They effectively killed Berts forte of working the front of the net when they started calling the slightest push-off on the D-man. Yet D-men are allowed impunity for cross-checking forwards in the same area. Have you ever seen since Bertuzzi in Vancouver the refs cracking down on the push-off from anyone else?
Maybe its the city. Everyone is jealous.