Canucks and Beyond
Entries with the tag: markus naslund
The Canucks fell short of their cup goal in Naslund’s dozen years in Vancouver but he need apologize for nothing. He was one of the franchise’s greatest players during some of its most exciting seasons.
Too bad on that April night as he skated off for the last time, no one stopped to say thanks. It had been quite a ride.
—Jim Hughson, CBC
I couldn’t have said it better myself.
So much going on in the puck world these days and I couldn’t think of a better person to sort it all out with than Hockey Night in Canada’s Jim Hughson. Jim was kind enough to give up a good chunk of his time and we covered a few topics on the audio clip below, including:
- The Hockey Hall of Fame inductions are happening this weekend. Jim reminds us of how fast a player Glenn Anderson was back in his day, plus Pavel Bure‘s name comes up in the discussion.
- What Does October Teach Us? That if you’re a member of the New York Rangers with dreams of a Stanley Cup, statistically you might have history on your side. Plus some words on why the NYR had to say goodbye to Brendan Shanahan and why Markus Naslund has found a perfect fit at MSG.
- Head Injuries: Should there be a special penalty for hits to the head? The issue came up again this week. There are no simple solutions, but Hughson shares his thoughts on the topic.
Plus a few more odds and ends. Listen to the complete conversation below.
Statistics aren’t everyone’s cup of tea (least of all mine; in university, I dropped out of ‘Introductory Statistics’ three times before finally finishing and passing the course) but they’re obviously a useful tool when it comes to breaking down a player—especially a player who’s new to the team and somewhat of an unknown quantity.
Below are four charts I’ve put together to look at Pavol Demitra (and one on Mats Sundin) from a variety of perspectives:
Chart 1— Demitra vs Naslund
Chart 2— Demitra’s 2007-08 Line Combos and Points
Chart 3— Demitra’s Situational Ice Time for 2007-08
Chart 4— Sundin’s 2007-08 Line Combos and Points
Markus Naslund signed a two-year deal with the New York Rangers today—New York being pretty much as far as one can get from Vancouver without actually swimming in the sea or hanging out in Miami. And I don’t blame him one bit.
To quote the Yankee Canuck—“Well it’s official: I want Mike Gillis’s head on a spit.”
1. Markus Naslund: Money Doesn’t Matter (mostly)
On his decision to play at least one more season in the NHL:
“It was not a hard decision to make with a little distance to everything. I feel very motivated to continue playing in NHL.”
In The Province:
The new agent for Markus Naslund said the rumoured sale of the unrestricted free agent’s home in Vancouver doesn’t necessarily mean the Canuck captain’s playing days here are over.
“I haven’t been involved with him long enough, but if in fact his home has sold, I don’t think that has a bearing on his decision about next season,” agent Donald Baizley said Monday from his Winnipeg office.
No, it probably doesn’t indicate much of anything about Naslund’s playing career, but it was still a worrisome story. Not because of the sale of his house, but who he sold his house to.
Some thoughts from Minnesota, à la Michael Russo at the Star Tribune:
Oh, and lastly, this is unconfirmed by me but being told to me by a Vancouver reporter, but apparently Pavol Demitra was in Vancouver over the weekend being given a tour of the area by Canucks captain Markus Naslund.
As I’ve intimated here, the chances of the Wild even attempting to bring Demitra back is slim to none, and there’s a question whether he’d even want to return.
Demitra signing with Vancouver makes sense. His agent — or now, I guess, former agent — is Mike Gillis, the now-GM of the Canucks. Naslund is also now a former client of Gillis.
Both are unrestricted free agents, and you can bet Gillis may very well take care of his former clients. In fact, maybe Pavel Bure comes out of retirement and returns to Vancouver.
[updated below - Demitra did indeed spend time in Vancouver in recent days.]
From The Province:
Markus Naslund is recovering after elbow surgery to remove loose bone chips Thursday. It’s unclear how long the problem had been bothering the pending unrestricted free agent.
One report has suggested Naslund won’t return to Vancouver if coach Alain Vigneault comes back.
The first bit of a news is a surprise; I hope the surgery went well. But the “report” of Naslund refusing to re-sign if Vigneault stays with the Canucks is probably just a matter of stating-the-obvious. Those two go together like oil-and-water, and if I had to pick one man to be associated with this team I’d pick a price-reduced Naslund in a heart beat. Scoring woes or not.
But I expect my opinion isn’t the popular one—here’s a poll to find out.
Update April 23, 11:10am PT: Canucks owner formally named new GM Mike Gillis in this morning’s press conference. More info here.
After the first period of the Washington/Philadelphia game tonight on TSN, Bob McKenzie stated the new Canucks General Manager was very-nearly 100% decided as Mike Gillis. He also stated this was likely to be announced by the end of the week.
Now, Global TV’s website reports:
Player agent Mike Gillis will be named general manager of the Vancouver Canucks on Wednesday, Global BC reported today.
Update 5:55pm PT: On TSN, James Duthie has now stated that this GM appointment is “confirmed” (though Bob McKenzie came short of backing this up as a certainty). There is a Vancouver press conference scheduled for Wednesday morning.
Asked by Global TV, Canucks owner Francesco Aquilini “would neither confirm nor deny the hiring.” (Which I figure is pretty much code for: “Yeah. Gillis is the new GM. But don’t steal my thunder. I’ll tell you more tomorrow.”)
More updates and links:
From Craig Simpson at CBC:
With 749 points as a Vancouver Canuck, Naslund is the franchise scoring leader. He is the longest serving captain in team history. His nine straight 20-plus goal seasons is also a franchise best. He has led the team in goal scoring, six out of the last eight years, and been the team’s top point getter seven out of eight. He’s durable, and has played through various injuries, missing only six games in the last six seasons. His work with numerous charities is admired in the community. In all, Markus Naslund has been a great player for the Canucks and an inspirational leader in the community.
“They’ve always been a good line, but we were just trying to spread our wealth a bit and we’ve got to be fair with Markus in that sense. He was trying to develop younger players and push them along, but he also needs to play with good players.”
Well, no kidding. I mean, whether you like Nazzy or not, you might as well make use of a guy taking up $6 million of space on your roster.
Brad Ziemer at CanWest News called Markus Naslund “Captain Fantastic” this morning. There are plenty of good reasons for the exuberance—as Ziemer points out:
...it’s not just that Naslund is scoring, it’s the way he’s scoring. We’re seeing more signature Markus Naslund goals, like that quick-release wrister from the left faceoff circle that beat Anaheim Ducks goaltender Jean-Sebastien Giguere on Tuesday night. After that game, Naslund said his head is now in “the right place.”
It would appear so.
Elliott Pap at the Vancouver Sun gets an interview with Mattias Ohlund. And, given the opportunity to explore the complex issues of Ohlund’s 4-game suspension, Pap goes for a truly hard-hitting approach right from the top:
Q.The Canucks are on the road this week but you’ve been at home serving your suspension for whacking Mikko Koivu. Are your kids wondering what Daddy has done?
A. I think Viktor and Hannah are just happy that Daddy is home.
Well, as long as they’re happy, that deals with the big question of the day. So now for some trivialities—like Markus Naslund’s recent performance.
So said the Hulk, beating his chest for the media yesterday.
But first, about the Oilers. The dark powers of boys named Alice (shootout specialist extraordinaire) and his partner the WhoreCough, plus a temporarily functioning powerplay, was all it took to give Edmonton their second s/o win over Vancouver in a week. But neither loss should devastate a Canucks fan—great games, right? (Although Tony Gallagher had a serious difference of opinion on that subject a few days ago—but I’ll worry about agreeing with Gallagher when the earth shifts on its rotational axis…)
Anyway, with all the fuss from Derek Boogaard, threatening retaliation on Markus Naslund or the Sedins tonight, there’s a lot of posturing going on. And I like posturing, my favorite part so far being this promotional poster for the game, found in the Pioneer Press today:
A 4-1 win over the Columbus Blue Jackets. And while others will likely object, I thought it was a brilliant performance.
First Act: The Canucks are competent and steady, earning a 2 goal lead.
Second Act: The Canucks are replaced by characters from the movie “Dazed & Confused.”
This is followed by coach Alain Vigneault hyperventilating foul language inside the Canucks’ dressing room—until spittle has sprayed down the front of his $1,200 Italian suit and he develops a twitch—which leads to…
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Tags: columbus+blue+jackets, curtis+sanford, kevin+bieksa, markus+naslund, ryan+kesler, the+story+of+my+progressive+heart+failure, vancouver+canucks