Written by: Larry “The Nucks IceMan” Johnson
The Canucks this year is a study of a team with a multiple personality disorder. It has a first period where they suffer from confusion, lack of urgency; forgetful of responsibilities, carefree, lackadaisical and memory loss.
In the second period they are more conscious of their surroundings, responsible, attentive to details; play with meaning, coherent, and energetic.
The third period they play with passion, rise to the occasion, overcome adversity, flow with synchronicity, beat down the odds and pull a rabbit out of their collective hats or in this case helmets.
How else do you describe the events where the Nucks have come from behind 10 times now, when starting the third period to win? Have they been watching the old Muhammad Ali/George Foreman fights and discovered the art of “rope a dope” for hockey?
Let the opposition wail away on the score sheet, expend their energy scoring, body checking, completely dominating and then in the third period when the opposition is completely exhausted, confident and convinced that the Nucks are done like dinner, the Canucks alter ego rises up to beat them.
Think about that for a moment. Ten times or 20 points in the standings, the Canucks have come back from a loss to record a win. That is phenomenal. But just think if they had only won half of those games or 10 points worth towards the standings? They would be tied for ninth spot with the Detroit Red Wings!
With all the adversity and injuries the Nucks have gone through this season, is this just the “boot camp” training preparing them for a long run in the playoffs? What has happened this season will never happen again, meaning the 14 game road trip and the 10 games and counting, come from behind wins.
Are the stars lining up for something special with a team of destiny? Look how many players are having career years in scoring and or points?
In no particular order: Henrik Sedin, Alex Burrows, Mikael Samuelsson, Ryan Kesler, Mason Raymond, Christian Ehrhoff and Jannik Hansen. Jannik Hansen had a total of six goals in two previous seasons and here he is with two winning goals on this road trip and eight this season to date!
Roberto Luongo may match or better his first season number of wins of 47.
The Canucks may end up with the most points ever, have reached and surpassed most points at the 66 game mark and are on course to have their best +/- differential.
Two of the top six defensemen go down with extended injuries and the depth at that position allows the team to continue on, even though they face the monster road trip.
Who would have ever thought, with a road record of barely .500 before they set out, that the Nucks would finish with a record of no less than 8W, 6L and could finish with 9-5 if they beat Phoenix tonight?
This has been one bizarre year right from the onset of the season, where it was mediocrity at best in the beginning, then the home winning record and then having Henrik Sedin rise to the occasion like never before sitting in first place in the NHL scoring race for several weeks.
When was the last time a Canuck, besides Markus Naslund (finished second in scoring in 2003), was in that lofty position?
In conclusion, I started out talking about this multiple personality that the team seems to have and that’s OK. because this sure is interesting trying to figure them out. Hey, what’s to figure out? This is most likely the best Canuck team that has been around since 1994 and we all remember what happened that year.
Maybe, just maybe, this time it turns out different.
Filed under: Vancouver Canucks