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Opmac

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<img src="http://cdn.nhl.com/canucks/images/upload/2007/09/092907_oilers16_b.jpg" class="imageFloatLeftFramed" width="320" height="240">I was disappointed when I found out that Darcy Hordichuk would be scratched in favour of Rick Rypien because in my eyes he's been invisible all year long. I made it my goal to watch Rypien carefully and critically Monday night.

My assessment is in and Rypien should not be in the lineup over Hordichuk and Hansen. As a whole our fourth line was owned by Buffalo's. The line was benched for the entire third period and Ryan Johnson only got shifts on the penalty kill. Individually, Rypien was invisible all night.

As the team's supposed energy player I expect him to be banging bodies when he's not fighting. On Monday night, he was credited with one hit. That is simply not enough for your energy forward. By my count, he got hit at by the opposition more than he made attempts to take runs at people.

If he's not hitting, then Rypien just becomes the one-dimensional goon. If he's going to be a one-dimension goon, I would rather have a legit heavyweight in the lineup like Calgary's Brian McGrattan or Minnesota's Derek Boogaard who can intimidate the opposition. Let's face it; Rypien is not going to be intimidating anybody on the ice with his 5'11" and 170 pound frame other than the Darcy Tuckers of the world.

Luongo's words after Rypien defeated the 6'7" Boris Valabik in a fight:

"I've never been so pumped up after a fight in my whole life," said Luongo. "I was happy for him and he deserves it. He's a great guy. Obviously great fight, so it was pretty impressive."

It's great that Rypien can bring energy through his fights, but when he's not in fights, he's invisible man out there. This season, Rypien's established himself as one of the best, if not the best middleweights in the league. As a result, it is going to be hard for him to find a dance partner unless he steps out of his weight class like St. Louis' Cam Janssen and start fighting the heavyweights.

People like to bring up the fact that between Rypien and Hordichuk, Rypien has the better offensive game. But it's the fourth line, I don't expect them to score. I expect them to bring energy, emotion, and strong forecheck. If they can chip in the odd goal, great. But it's energy, emotion, and a strong forecheck first.

Hordichuk is everything Rypien isn't. Hordichuk's constantly dumping the puck in and flying in on the forecheck to bang bodies. In my eyes, Hordichuk's the guy that makes the fourth line go.

On Saturday night, the fourth line unit with Hordichuk and Glass on the wings and Ryan Johnson in the middle was as effective as I've seen the fourth line all year long. The line was fast; they got the puck in deep, and were on the forecheck banging bodies almost instantaneously. For the first time, we finally saw some vintage Ryan Johnson, something we haven't seen at all since he signed in Vancouver.

On Monday, you replace Hordichuk with Rypien and the line seemed lost out there. There was absolutely no forecheck from the line and they were more often than not trapped in the Vancouver end of the ice by Buffalo's fourth line.

Rypien had a bout with the stomach flu and lost weight from it, but why is he in the lineup if that's stopping him from playing his game?

A guy like Alex Bolduc was willing to fight 6'8" John Scott to keephis spot in the lineup, but Rypien keeps on getting a spot handed to him even though he's been absolutely useless and invisible all year long five-on-five. Bolduc got the scouting report on Scott from both Darcy Hordichuk and defenceman Shane O'Brien, but still proceeded to fight Scott because he wanted to impress the coaches and keep his job in the NHL.

Perhaps Rypien's body cannot hold up to the constant banging, but I rather have an oft-injured Rypien that makes a difference in the lineup once a year, than the useless Rypien we are seeing right now.

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Agreed!

I am very angry about the delusional posters that keep turning their backs on his daily garbage play!

He is our tough guy... and when Scott was there... he simply chickened out. Instead poor Bolduc (who is no fighter) had to step it...

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i've noticed a decline in his desire and fire......i believe there is a deeper reason for this...i don't know what it is but, you just don't change your style of play over-night...i know that there could be things happening in your life that can affect your thought process....i agree with you that if he is having problems, he shouldn't be in the line up......in the game that his play changed, it seemed that hordichuk, bolduc and glass almost took over that department as if they were trying to protect him. i thought maybe his hand was too mashed up for him to fight....just my thought.

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worst article EVER. rypien vs hordy stats are pretty comparable but rypiens are better across the board. hordy seems to not want to fight anymore, and when a fighter doesn't fight (george larourqe sp?) they become useless. rypien can fight, loves to fight, and he gets the crowd pumped. hordy used to and i like him as a person and player, but if i had a choice between signing the 2, rypien would definately be it

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If people expect him to fight every night that's just ridiculous. Just because the whole game wasn't about him doesn't mean he's slipping in what he does best. Who says Hordi would have had a better game anyway? You can't rip on a player just because they aren't the star of the show every game!

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It's not about fighting. If he fights, it gives us energy. He can't fight all the time, and anyway, fighting doesn't do much except a motivation boost when we're winning by alot or losing by alot. In close games, we need the fourth like to PRESSURE, not FIGHT! Rypien hasn't been doing well lately.

ITS NOT ABOUT FIGHTING ALL THE TIME. Rypien is a good fighter, but he's not doing well enough at playing hockey right now. He is good, but something's gone wrong and I don't think he's playing as well as he could.

That's what the article is saying. It's not bashing Rypien for not fighting, it's bashing him for not being able to hold his own in the other end, or produce defensively.

Maybe we should put him on the PP, give him more responsibility so he can improve his game? Not sure.

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If people expect him to fight every night that's just ridiculous. Just because the whole game wasn't about him doesn't mean he's slipping in what he does best. Who says Hordi would have had a better game anyway? You can't rip on a player just because they aren't the star of the show every game!

My point is Rypien's not bringing energy. He better start fighting every game if that's the only way he can bring energy.

No, I don't expect Rypien or Hordichuk or even Luongo to be a start every game. But Hordichuk would have at least banged some bodies or Hansen would have made contributions on the penalty kill. Rypien was invisible out there and I fail to see how that contributes to the success of the team.

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worst article EVER. rypien vs hordy stats are pretty comparable but rypiens are better across the board. hordy seems to not want to fight anymore, and when a fighter doesn't fight (george larourqe sp?) they become useless. rypien can fight, loves to fight, and he gets the crowd pumped. hordy used to and i like him as a person and player, but if i had a choice between signing the 2, rypien would definately be it

This is not a debate about fighting. This is the fact that Rypien is absolutely useless out there five-on-five. He is not bringing any energy onto the ice and the team.

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This is not a debate about fighting. This is the fact that Rypien is absolutely useless out there five-on-five. He is not bringing any energy onto the ice and the team.

well your point of the article is your pissed about rypien replacing hordichuk. rypien has better offensive and defensive stats slightly, and he hits just as much as hordi. so i'm failing to see the point of your article

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well your point of the article is your pissed about rypien replacing hordichuk. rypien has better offensive and defensive stats slightly, and he hits just as much as hordi. so i'm failing to see the point of your article

If you paid attention, Rypien had one hit last night and by my count he got hit at by the Sabres more times than he attempted to take runs at people.

Rypien has 63 hits. Hordichuk has 81. Hordichuk's played in less games and averages less ice time per game.

The leader in hits for the Canucks is Tanner Glass and he has 117. He nearly has double the hits Rypien has. The Rypien that broke into the NHL in the 2005-06 shouldn't be outdone that badly.

So, no, I strongly disagree with your statement that he hits as much as Hordichuk.

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Opmac the only question I have for you is why do you single out Rypien for his bad play the entire season on this forum? Not any other player but him. Seriously you blame him out of the entire roster! Did he deny you a kiss at the bar or something? Obviously there's something more because you post on every Rypien topic. Are you blind? He fought Prust twice in a game recently and challenged the third. He broke Cam's nose! I could go on but you insist he's terrible and does not bring energy judging him now because of one game vs. Buffalo.

Life's too short put a smile on your face and show him some Love. He's healthy and the Canucks are on fire so hey! Cheers

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Sometimes its important to have a weapon on the bench in case you need it. When you are winning and the team's got jump, the last thing you need is a penalty. Not sure I'd be second guessing AV these days....

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Opmac the only question I have for you is why do you single out Rypien for his bad play the entire season on this forum? Not any other player but him. Seriously you blame him out of the entire roster! Did he deny you a kiss at the bar or something? Obviously there's something more because you post on every Rypien topic. Are you blind? He fought Prust twice in a game recently and challenged the third. He broke Cam's nose! I could go on but you insist he's terrible and does not bring energy judging him now because of one game vs. Buffalo.

Life's too short put a smile on your face and show him some Love. He's healthy and the Canucks are on fire so hey! Cheers

No, please go on. I insist.

I'd like to know why you think so highly of Rypien. He is a one-dimensional goon.

I fail to see what he has done five-on-five to deserve praises. He plays with absolutely no energy and is floating 99% of the time when he's on the ice.

He is doing nothing five-on-five. When he does, I will gladly sing his praises.

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I'd like to tell you why I think so highly of him but I cant do it on here.

Aren't goons supposed to play on the fourth line? You say he floats 99% of the time. He gets 6-7 mins a game and his fights last half of that so who cares. He's a good skater and can score at times, and not to mention the fans love him. I can think of other players who have done zilch this season but I don't see you making topics about them. Admit it you don't like him for whatever reason.

In my opinion every time Hordichuk fights it bores me...he's slow and loses fights so explain that (which I'm sure you will find a way to one up me). I like Hordi its just I like Ripper more....more thrilling knowing he's gonna pound someone with lightning fast hands. And keep in mind with my last comment how much ice time they get and their job title as a fourth liner.

No, please go on. I insist.

I'd like to know why you think so highly of Rypien. He is a one-dimensional goon.

I fail to see what he has done five-on-five to deserve praises. He plays with absolutely no energy and is floating 99% of the time when he's on the ice.

He is doing nothing five-on-five. When he does, I will gladly sing his praises.

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Unbelievable that everyone is missing the point, Opmac...we have both bantered about Ryp just being a non-factor 5-5.

I simply do not care about his fighting....as exciting as it is.

But if the team is in a situation where they are down a goal late in the third...and you want to press the opposition for a goal, after double shifting the Twins...or the first 3 lines.....you need that 4th line to be that thread of threat.

If people seriously think that Rypien is a factor......than you are better off watching MMA.

Hordi has been actually playing Hockey...and not just roaming around and placing useless hits.

Rypien was just fricking ghastly, the last game.

I really would like to see him sit...and get Hansen on that line.

Fans do not regard our team as fast.....which is just the biggest bunch of BS.

We have speed on every single line, and yes im talking about one player on each line providing that element.

Ryp has speed....but has suspect puck handling skills (what happened to those hands we saw a few seasons back???!!!!).

Hansen is certainly sitting for no good reason.

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I'd like to tell you why I think so highly of him but I cant do it on here.

Aren't goons supposed to play on the fourth line? You say he floats 99% of the time. He gets 6-7 mins a game and his fights last half of that so who cares. He's a good skater and can score at times, and not to mention the fans love him. I can think of other players who have done zilch this season but I don't see you making topics about them. Admit it you don't like him for whatever reason.

In my opinion every time Hordichuk fights it bores me...he's slow and loses fights so explain that (which I'm sure you will find a way to one up me). I like Hordi its just I like Ripper more....more thrilling knowing he's gonna pound someone with lightning fast hands. And keep in mind with my last comment how much ice time they get and their job title as a fourth liner.

If he is in fact a one-dimensional goon, then even more reason to want Hordichuk in the lineup because he does more than just fight.

He's slow. Interesting. Ty Conklin went out to play the puck because he felt pressure from Hordichuk skating onto the puck. Hordichuk's an excellent north-south skater.

Hordichuk loses fights. Interesting. He has one loss on the season according to HockeyFights.com like Rypien. And that loss came against Brian McGrattan in a fight that he was winning until the very end.

Just one question. What does Rypien do five-on-five? Don't give things he can do.

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You people need to open your eyes...

Opmac is giving a great insight and you guys choose to ignore it. You guys end up bashing Hordichuk... a guy who can hit and bang... and is not a liability like Rypien.

THE FACTS ARE LAID RIGHT THERE IN FRONT OF YOU!

Take off your homer glasses... Put some negativity glasses... and See for yourself...

Rypien has been completely useless. I'm tired of Fans clinging on to players that have not performed (For the Entire Season), Its time they get criticized...Its time for us to find the problem and eliminate it.

Waive Rypien. Opmac I recommend making a Ryan Johnson blog as well!

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Its pointless for me to debate with you on this. Rypien had a great game tonight and I didnt see much of Hordi. Either way my beef is not with Hordi its the fact that you only criticize Rypien. I think they should both be playing. Damn I wish Ripper would have scored that nice feed from Demitra so I could rub it in more. :)

Opmac do me a favor and pick on someone else for a bit,play nice....maybe Edler Mr. Giveaway...

If he is in fact a one-dimensional goon, then even more reason to want Hordichuk in the lineup because he does more than just fight.

He's slow. Interesting. Ty Conklin went out to play the puck because he felt pressure from Hordichuk skating onto the puck. Hordichuk's an excellent north-south skater.

Hordichuk loses fights. Interesting. He has one loss on the season according to HockeyFights.com like Rypien. And that loss came against Brian McGrattan in a fight that he was winning until the very end.

Just one question. What does Rypien do five-on-five? Don't give things he can do.

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Its pointless for me to debate with you on this. Rypien had a great game tonight and I didnt see much of Hordi. Either way my beef is not with Hordi its the fact that you only criticize Rypien. I think they should both be playing. Damn I wish Ripper would have scored that nice feed from Demitra so I could rub it in more. :)

Opmac do me a favor and pick on someone else for a bit,play nice....maybe Edler Mr. Giveaway...

It is pointless to continue to debate. You have your opinion and I have mine. And I strongly believe in mine and you strongly believe in yours.

But if you want to have this discussion again in the future, I'd be happy to have it.

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Good post Benski, I also thought Ryper had a good game tonight. Opmac, if you make it your goal to watch one player critically all game, then maybe you shouldnt be watching the games. It's a team game, don't criticize one player just because he had a bad game. Also, you say that the entire 4th line outplayed by Buffalo's, so why, again, would you only criticize the one player if it was the entire line that was outplayed. Your argument about him only having one hit in a game is terrible, and you make your argument even worse by saying that the opposition tried to hit him more times then he tried to hit them. The guy has one bad game and he should be cut? Im sorry but everybody has bad games. You also say that he needs to step out of his weight class to fight. Well Im pretty sure that Valabik and Hall Gill are a little bit bigger then him. Lastly, the guy knows when to pick his fights, you can't go out there and fight every night. There's a time and place for fighting, and he knows when to drop the gloves. Yes Bolduc fought Scott, but did that bring a whole lot of energy to the team?

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What is Rypien supposed to do other than have sick tillys and be an energy player? Just because he may not weigh 230 pounds and hammer people does not mean he doesn't have a strong forecheck.

Rypien did not and will not chicken out against John Scott. Hmm, do you think maybe Bolduc was literally fighting for a roster spot? If Bolduc won the fight would you be saying the same thing about Rypien? No. Bolduc himself must have known he was going to get beat, why not leave it to the proven tough guy? His mistake was costly to himself, but the Canucks don't seem to need him.

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Being a good fighter makes you useless 5 on 5?

He is a good fighter that is useless 5 on 5.

Not sure where you inferred that being a good fighter makes him useless 5 on 5.

There again....everyone is clearly not reading this blog.

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