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Not a Leaky Condo - MAR.11.08


Polar Bear

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<table width=90% align=center><tr><td><img src=http://cdn.nhl.com/canucks/images/upload/2007/09/bear_head.jpg border=0 align=left vspace=1 hspace=4>My apologies for the inconsistent theme in this blog today folks, it is exam and report card time, and I am up to my eyeballs in marking, writing, and stressing about the Canucks and their season.

I'm also busy looking for a house to buy in the Lower Mainland, and let me tell you, what a pain in the behind. Buying a house and moving is sort of like fighting for the #8 seed in the playoffs; it is as stressful as all else, but once you get in, get your stuff in the right place, then the fun really begins. It's when you miss out on the house you want that it really hurts.

The team plays 82 hard fought games in 7 months just to earn the right to battle even harder for a shot at the Stanley Cup. The ability of these players to focus and stay fresh is remarkable, and in the case of the injury plagued Vancouver Canucks, it is even more amazing.

<a href="http://cdn.nhl.com/canucks/images/upload/2008/02/021908_dad07_b.jpg" target="_blank"><img src="http://cdn.nhl.com/canucks/images/upload/2008/02/021908_dad07_t.jpg" align="right" border="0" hspace="4" vspace="1"></a>I started with my house metaphor, so let me continue (by the way, the Leafs are clearly the "leaky condo" in this scenario). Playing with as many injuries as the Canucks have had is the same as buying a house based on the advice of your uncle. Who is a used car salesman dealing exclusively in Pintos. Sure, he may know how to swindle the local idiot into overpaying for what amounts to little more than a rust experiment, but does he know what he is doing in a housing market?

Now don't get me wrong, I'm not comparing our replacements to Pintos, or used-car salesmen, I'm just suggesting the absurdity of trying to make such an important decision based upon the advice of someone who isn't perhaps the most qualified. Similarly, how does a hockey team make the playoffs with a blue-line that looks more like a farm team than is does an NHL team? Let me try a different analogy

Losing Sami Salo, Mattias Ohlund, Willie Mitchell, Kevin Bieksa, Lukas Kraijcek, and Aaron Miller at various points in the season and replacing them with farm team players is like asking a pre-med school student to perform a vasectomy on you. They may be the best doctor in the city in a few year, but they have to practice somewhere, and the guinea pig is going to be on you! Such an important event in your life requires that you used a seasoned professional with a proven track record.

<a href="http://cdn.nhl.com/canucks/images/upload/2008/02/FEB2708_Canucks-Avalanche13_b.jpg" target="_blank"><img src="http://cdn.nhl.com/canucks/images/upload/2008/02/FEB2708_Canucks-Avalanche13.jpg" align="left" border="0" hspace="4" vspace="1"></a>My point through this sea of mixed metaphors is, quite simply, that the playoffs are a difficult goal for any team to reach, even if your team is healthy the entire season. The team we have on the ice has done a remarkable job to even be at this place, where we have a very good chance of making it in. When I look back at the various obstacles these guys have battled through this year I am even more impressed with their effort.

There were and are a lot of naysayers who have doubted this team's ability to get into the playoffs. I firmly believed all along we would and will make it (see my blog entitled "playoff bound"). I have said all along that no one wants to draw Vancouver in the first round, even if we enter the big dance in the 8th spot. Why is that? There is a catch to playing Vancouver.

The catch is this: we have the best real estate agent/doctor in town. Dr. Luongo rarely takes a night off, and he looks to get this team to the playoffs. However, it may surprise you what I am going to say next: if we win the cup this year, it'll have everything to do with Kesler and Burrows, but that is the subject for my next blog. I'll have that one up just as soon as I finish grading these 100 essays I have sitting in front of me…

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