And no, not every team has an amazing one and two pairing; and not every team has any hope of a Stanley Cup. When he gets healthy again he would be worth more to us as an asset than as a player. Were you satisfied with the pathetic performance in the Cup final from this team two years ago? I know I wasn't. "Fine" isn't good enough. "Fine" doesn't win championships. It comes a distant second at best. Kesler is the poster boy for near misses.
Last edited by ink; 05-27-2012 at 03:10 PM.
Let's see how Kesler does this season because AV/Gillis will supposedly talk to him about trying to 'protect himself' and not play too recklessly which obviously leads to injuries. A healthy Kesler is a top 2nd line player. An injured Kesler isn't. The key to this team is making sure Kesler enters the post season completely healthy.
"[He's] a really complete player... There's not really any weaknesses to his game." - Bill Belichick on Andrew Luck
"Vontae Davis looks like Bumgarner of the San Francisco Giants. He's throwing a no hitter out there tonight" - Jon Gruden
Come on man. You were one of the guys who wanted him to be captain.
You do realize that Kesler had 2 70 point seasons before last seasons (including a 40 goal year) and 59 3 years ago.
That would seem to indicate that his playing ability is likely above his performance last season especially considering his injury issues.
Ryan Kesler is one of the best 10 second line centers in hockey quite easily.
The guy is 29th and 21st in the NHL in goals in the last 3 seasons.
He's not a third line center.
The problem with the Canucks (which are miniscule) was the lack of anything beyond the top 4 forwards (Sedins, Burrows, Kesler) the last two years.
Still, this is still one of the best teams in hockey. The main reason they lost in the playoffs this year was Daniel's injury, coupled with great goaltending by Quick, a mediocre Luongo performance and the fact that its a short series.
The Canucks have been 2nd, 1st, 5th the last three years in goals scored.
If the Canucks add Whitney, Doan or even a guy like David Jones, this offense will become much better
2. Kesler does not use his linemates, thereby reducing the likelihood of secondary scoring. He tries to do everything himself. Call it selfish play, call it poor vision, but it is not much of an indication of leadership.
3. regular season scoring means little for another very important reason: the Sedins struggle in the tight-checking post-season, which means that in order to win, the second line has to be good enough to take over. That's why second liners like Booth and Kesler will never cut it. They might be able to take over in bursts but can't sustain it. It's a special circumstance. The top line is not our top line in the playoffs and everyone knows it. What's Plan B? Booth and Kesler? Who were found to have zero chemistry?
4. Kesler may well be the leader of this team. Has anyone seen how undisciplined they are? How easily sucked into trash-talking and after whistle scrums? I don't understand how people see leadership in him when he is such an undisciplined, immature player himself. He's easy to goad. No leader falls into that trap so easily.
5. We know the Canucks are "one of the best teams in the NHL". Being "one of" the best teams is not good enough. Ask the Sharks. The talent on this team is not good enough and it stems from the year Gillis re-signed Luongo and the Sedins, not recognizing that he needed to do a lot more. It was made worse when he had another stand-pat off-season last year.
6. I didn't say he was a third line C. I said that IF he was a third line C I would have no problem with him mainly being valuable for his two way play. With the Sedins on the first line, our second line C has to be capable (like Messier once did) of assuming first line duties in the post-season. It's just the way this team is built. The Sedins are not going anywhere, so we need to find that second line player who can consistently produce. We haven't so far. Yes, the expectations are high. You don't become a champion without producing consistently at an elite level. Our second line doesn't cut it and we all know it.
Last edited by ink; 05-29-2012 at 04:59 PM.
Yes! Lets build a team full of "playoff performers"(a stupid mythical term) and then miss the playoffs for all of our troubles.
We need top 6 players who can produce consistently regardless of whether they're play soft NW division teams or tough playoff series. We know the Sedins really can't do that because of the style of their game so the importance of the second line is greater than ever.
Last edited by ink; 05-29-2012 at 05:06 PM.
No regular season season stats give us the best indication of a player's production. Its the larger sample size and gives us the best way to judge a player. Admittedly the playoffs differe because of the better teams involved and the more penalties that are not called. Still, when evaulating talent the regular season is certainly your best bet.]1. You're quoting regular season stats. Regular season stats mean absolutely nothing. Well, they mean you win a President's Trophy, which is worthless at this point.
Fernando Pisani anyone?
I disagree on four different grounds:2. Kesler does not use his linemates, thereby reducing the likelihood of secondary scoring. He tries to do everything himself. Call it selfish play, call it poor vision, but it is not much of an indication of leadership.
1, From what I've seen of Kesler this is not entirely true. Obviously, you've seen more and I'd be curious for more opinions from Canucks fans but while Kesler is more scoring driven and does try to make individual plays, he does possess good chemistry with quite a few of his linemates. He passes well, plays hard behind the net, cycles decently. His CORSI rating indicates that when he's on the ice offense certainly happens and not just from his own shots.
2, There are many good NHL forwards who play a more individual type game and there teams successfully manage to construct lines around that. I'm not convicned Kesler is quite that type of player but I don't think his linemates the last few years have been of the proper type.
3, Neither have these linemates been of high quality. I've seen you and other Canuck fans constantly complain about the lack of high quality/good offensive players on the second line with Kesler. Higgens, Boothe, Samuelsson (in his later years), Hansen are not really the type of top 6 forwards you want.
4, I don't really understand why a player's playing style would indicate leadership. Its not like Kesler plays lazy (in fact it seems the opposite to me) which would be a leadership trait.
I'm not entirely conviced by this. The Sedins have struggled in the postseason to a degree but have been flat out great in a few series. In the last 4 seasons, Henrik has had 51 points in 52 playoff games, Daniel is at a similar rate. While that's down a bit from their regular season stats, its not that much down compared to the depression of offensive stats across the league during the playoffs. Kovalchuk may win the Conn Smythe and he has posted 18 points in 17 games.3. regular season scoring means little for another very important reason: the Sedins struggle in the tight-checking post-season, which means that in order to win, the second line has to be good enough to take over.
And again, we are talking about tiny sample sizes. To say that the Sedin's will permanently struggle in the postseason is a bit of misnomer imo.
Having depth is of course important and I agree thats the Canucks problem. I just don't think that's Kesler fault
Again Kesler is one of the league's best second liners. You really will struggle to find me many second liners in this league. Booth is certainly inferior to Kesler and is a mediocre top 6 forward generally and if your talking about guys not showing up for the playoffs where does Alexander Burrows fit in.That's why second liners like Booth and Kesler will never cut it.
Kesler is a better player than Burrows is for sure (I like Burrows also though)
If this is true, isnt the top line the real problem here?They might be able to take over in bursts but can't sustain it. It's a special circumstance. The top line is not our top line in the playoffs and everyone knows it.
I don't agree but by your logic, wouldnt a more productive conversation be getting rid of Sedins.
Admittedly Booth and Kesler didnt even have a training camp together and had limited games and Kesler was playing injured but I would agree that their chemistry was miniscule. I don't see this as a reason to get rid of Kesler. I see this as a reason to get Kesler better linemates.What's Plan B? Booth and Kesler? Who were found to have zero chemistry?
I agree that the Canucks are undisciplined also. They took the 8th most penalties in the league this year. The Kings took the 6th most though interestingly enough.4. Kesler may well be the leader of this team. Has anyone seen how undisciplined they are?
But why do the Sedin's get a pass on this especially considering Henrik is the captain. Why does the coach get a pass on this? Kesler has reduced the number of penalties he's taken for the past 2 seasons.
I don't really see how its a failure to win the President's trophy. You build the best team and hope you win. The Canucks have built awesome teams. As a Leaf fan I am very jealous. You do know you came one game from winning the Cup and this discussion doesnt even exist at all. You know how close that is? And to be honest, the team didnt really get much worse. A few additions and a revamp year from Kesler (and Schneider is what the world thinks he is) and this team could very well win it next year.
5. We know the Canucks are "one of the best teams in the NHL". Being "one of" the best teams is not good enough.
A, The Sharks never made the finals and definately didnt have a chance to win the championship like the Canucks did last year.Ask the Sharks.
B, Better the Sharks than the Leafs, Blue Jackets, Islanders or Panthers (not including this year).
You do realize that after this offseason they made the finals. They were by any standard at least the 2nd best team in hockey that year (Beset in the regular season). There are also factors like cap space and teams willing to make trades.The talent on this team is not good enough and it stems from the year Gillis re-signed Luongo and the Sedins, not recognizing that he needed to do a lot more.
Unfortunately when you are so good that you make the finals, its hard to improve the roster with limited cap space or resources.It was made worse when he had another stand-pat off-season last year.
To be honest, the Canucks transition from the finals to 2011-2012 was the best of most recent teams. They were a great team again who got upset in the first round. The same thing happened to Boston.
You do realize you just compared Kesler to the greatest 2nd line center of all time and one of the best 15 players of all time.6. I didn't say he was a third line C. I said that IF he was a third line C I would have no problem with him mainly being valuable for his two way play. With the Sedins on the first line, our second line C has to be capable (like Messier once did) of assuming first line duties in the post-season.
You also realize that Adam Henrique is the second line cetner of the ECC and Mike Richards is the second line center of the WCC.
So the solution is to get rid of the best player on the second line?It's just the way this team is built. The Sedins are not going anywhere, so we need to find that second line player who can consistently produce. We haven't so far. Yes, the expectations are high. You don't become a champion without producing consistently at an elite level. Our second line doesn't cut it and we all know it
A healthy Kesler would be the best trade asset the Canucks have, it would help rebalance a stagnant team, and it could (with the right character pick up) change the leadership from part-time rat to full-time leader.
Yes I think the Sedins are a problem for the team in the post-season. I like their game and prefer it to the usual NHL fare but that will not win a championship without an extraordinary second line to pick them up. Ironically Kesler did just this in the Nashville series last year but he can't sustain this pace and produce consistently like this. In fact that series is the cause of a lot of wishful thinking about him. Finally, to be clear, I'm not blaming Kesler, I'm saying the team is stagnant (just look at AVs increasingly desperate line juggling moves to squeeze some results out of a stale lineup). You have to give up quality to get quality back. If he had the cajones Gillis could rebalance a roster that is just not built to succeed in the post season.
About jealousy, as a Raptors fan I've often looked at fairly well made teams like the Suns of a few years ago, but they have faded with a whimper into irrelevance. Sure I was jealous of them at the time but now I understand why they were so dissatisfied with "almost" good enough. The Canucks with Kesler, not to mention their OK D-men, are almost good enough. A better GM would be able to make the moves needed to get the team to the next level.
p.s. I'd answer in more detail but I'm posting from an iPhone.
Last edited by ink; 05-29-2012 at 08:02 PM.