Canucks and Beyond
by Alanah McGinley on 09/16/07 at 06:37 PM ET
Plenty of interesting trivia about things relating to the team this past week. From Trevor Linden to Anson Carter to events earlier today regarding Yo! Luongo… here are the odds & ends.
Update: Canucks defenseman Sami Salo has been injured Sunday as well. Story is added to bottom of this post.
Update 2: The Trevor Linden injury is also now added down below. (I can’t stomach making new posts for every freakish Canucks’ injury today…)
Vancouver favorite Trevor Linden may not be at the stage in his career that he can set the league on fire, but he’s proven to be a valuable part of the franchise. Last season’s playoffs were one notable part of that, which led to him signing on for another season with the team. With a work ethic that’s impossible to beat, adoration from local fans that can’t be bought, and a salary that doesn’t edge the cap, Linden faced down his summer workout with creativity.
Linden’s creativity took him to Europe, where he competed in the TransAlp competitive bike race in July. It was an eight-day stage race that began in Mittenwald, Germany and, after 40 hours of riding, finished in Riva De Garda, Italy.
Linden teamed up with John Ramsden to form the “Dark Horse Racing” duo. They covered 600 kilometers (385 miles) of terrain and took on a challenging 19,500 meter (65,000 feet) vertical gain, finishing 48th (out of 122) in the Master Division.
Rick Rypien, the Vancouver Canucks/ Manitoba Moose enforcer, has just come off a rough year. Off season, he’s been taking it easy, trying to allow a full recovery for what was a bad sequence of events. Rypien’s 2006-07 Bad Luck List:
Staying healthy has been Rypien’s biggest problem lately. He broke his thumb during last year’s training camp. Then he injured his groin, while playing for the Canucks farm team, the Manitoba Moose, on Oct. 20. He came back Oct. 26 and managed to last 13 days before re-injuring his hand. He sat out five games to play for the Moose on Nov. 29. Two days later, Rypien was called up to the Canucks. He played a game-and-a-half before a season-ending groin injury.And for what has to be the most brutal description of a groin injury of all time…
“It tore right off the bone,” Rypien said. He also injured his abdomen at the same time, ending his year after just 14 games with Manitoba and two with the Canucks.He’s had groin surgery since then (obviously) and Rypien’s since been competing in training camp for a spot on the team this year. (And good luck to him—I don’t ever want to read or hear the phrase “it tore right off the bone” from a hockey player again, unless he’s talking about Colonel Sanders…) To get an idea of Rypien’s fight card the last few years, check out his profile at hockeyfights.com. Our boy does like to swing his fists…
For Canucks fans who’ve fretted that Anson Carter might be coming back to Vancouver, they can quit worrying: Carter was invited to training camp with his former club, the Edmonton Oilers. Probably a smart move by Kevin Lowe (shocking as it is to hear myself say “smart” and “Kevin Lowe” in the same sentence) and I’m guessing that if Carter is willing to take a massive salary hit, he’ll sign on. They need him, and he needs a job.
Also in the world of ex-Canucks, this sort of made me laugh this morning—a story out of Carolina indicates an issue with Hurricanes’ defense if any of their top guys go down:
There’s a little depth in the system—only one defenseman, Wade Brookbank, has played in an NHL game—and no money left in the budget for reinforcements, so the Canes need their five healthy defensemen to stay stay that way…Indeed. I’ve always liked Wade Brookbank but I’d hate to be in a position to start referring to him as “depth.” (Then again, I think we did have to refer to Brookbank as depth for a while… not an ideal scenario.)
Finally, here’s the biggie of the weekend: the story I posted about earlier, mentioning Roberto Luongo’s injury in training camp Sunday. Nailed by a shot to the collar bone or throat, Luongo had to leave the ice, and his condition is uncertain. This isn’t the first time that Luongo has had a scare (and freaked out fans) with a throat injury caused by teammates. And while it would be nice to blame the teammates, it’s Luongo who is largely responsible for this situation, I’d say:
Last season, he spent a night in hospital in Montreal after being hit in the throat by teammate Daniel Sedin’s shot during practice. That incident raised the issue of Luongo’s safety and whether the Canucks should force him to wear a throat protector as most NHL goalies do. Luongo briefly practised with one after the incident in Montreal but soon discarded it, saying he finds it distracting and counter-productive.Look, this is ridiculous. I think it’s reasonable at this point for the team to force him to wear the freakin’ throat protector. Don’t NHL teams’ insurance carriers frequently throw all kinds of restrictions on a player’s off-ice activities, depending on their liability? I seem to recall reading conditions about some star players not being allowed to do various extreme sports, because their value was too high and the insurance companies felt they needed to protect themselves. Well, unless I’m way off base, I think it’s fair to suggest the $6.5 million man should have to wear proper protective equipment whenever he’s on the ice and facing shots. And I imagine his insurance carrier is starting to think the same thing. At this rate, I’m starting to wonder if Luongo would be safer playing extreme sports than actually taking a hockey practice.
Update added 2:50pm PT: From TSN,
It is only a few days into training camp but Vancouver blueliner Sami Salo was injured on Sunday. Salo has a cast on his left wrist and will be re-evaluated on Monday. The club is unsure if the wrist is broken.No comment, for the moment. I’m feeling vaguely ill…
Update added 5:40pm PT: From TSN,
Trevor Linden left the game with a pulled groin and he too will be re-evaluated Monday.*a hat-tip to Puckhound61 who also mentioned this injury in the comments of an earlier post today.
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Alanah McGinley has been blogging hockey since 2003 (with a notable gap in time through 2010, kicking it with new baby Lucy while living knee-deep in chaos while reading "parenting for complete idiots" during every spare minute) sharing opinions, rants and not-so-deep thoughts with anyone who will listen.
In addition to writing Canucks & Beyond and helping manage Kukla's Korner, Alanah was one of the founders and co-hosts of The Crazy Canucks Podcast. She has contributed pieces to FoxSports.com and the New York Times Slapshot blog, as well as other stray destinations in cyberspace.
So that's me. Who the hell are you?
Alanah's Twitter: [@alanah1]