The Malik Report
by George Malik on 05/16/11 at 02:37 AM ET
It’s this kind of fluff that really irritates my Wings fan’s sensibilities…Since January, it seems, the Vancouver press corps has regularly suggested that this year’s Canucks compare favorably to the Red Wings’ Stanley Cup-winning teams from the late 90’s, and this suggestion from the Vancouver Province’s Tony Gallagher is just...silly:
Not since the Detroit Red Wings of ‘98 has a team approached a Stanley Cup run the way the Vancouver Canucks seem to be tackling this at times.
To refresh, that was the year the Wings won the Cup despite the fact Chris Osgood fanned four shots from centre ice during their playoff run and that’s what he’s often remembered for even though he won three Cups and was the starter for two.
That’s where Nick Lidstrom got the idea to shoot from long range on Dan Cloutier in 2002. He’d seen them go in behind him in earlier playoffs.
This isn’t to say Roberto Luongo is Chris Osgood. Luongo has the reputation of being one of the best in the game whereas Osgood never reached that level and the loveable Wing never made $10 million U.S. per season nor managed the swagger and intimidation factor Lui often takes into games. But the Canuck goalie has given away just as many goals during this run although his choice of wrapping has varied considerably. If it isn’t a direct giveaway to Joe Thornton as it was Sunday night, it’s surrendering a shot from behind the goal line or dropping a rebound at an inconvenient space.
The similarity gets all the more riveting for Vancouver fans when when you consider how well now that Luongo is recovering from these gaffs, perhaps even stronger than Osgood ever did. No longer does a goal send him into a tizzy mentally leading to the second one which has always been the killer, but rather he comes back stronger than ever, his mental strength growing and his teammates seem to realize how much he’s been through mentally and how strong he’s become.
No. There is no similarity because the 1998 Red Wings had already won a Stanley Cup, and these Canucks haven’t done that yet.
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The Malik Report is a destination for all things Red Wings-related. I offer biased, perhaps unprofessional-at-times and verbose coverage of my favorite team, their prospects and developmental affiliates. I've joined the Kukla's Korner family with five years of blogging under my belt, and I hope you'll find almost everything you need to follow your Red Wings at a place where all opinions are created equal and we're all friends, talking about hockey and the team we love to follow.