Monday, October 29, 2007

Trouble in Canucksville?

Along with losing comes controversy, finger-pointing, disruption, frustration, etc. Vigneault called out Willie Mitchell (among others) publicly after the game and Willie didn't appreciate it.

"He got beat twice," Vigneault said after the loss to Detroit. "That's not the Willie Mitchell we know as a defensive specialist."
Vigneault really wasn't impressed with how Mithchell played the 2-on-1 especially. He didn't take out the passing lane, while Luongo was playing the shooter.
Hey, I didn't like it either. That's not the Mitchell we know.
Willie replied:
"If people are unhappy with things, (as a) player you'd like to have that addressed," he said. "You don't like to hear about it through the media most of the time. That's his way of motivating I guess.

"I'm a player. I just go out and play and try and do my best. If he's not happy with what I'm doing I have to listen and dig in a little deeper and do a better job."
This may or may not be a distraction to the team. I'd say Mitchell is a fierce competitior and will respond. As will Kevin Bieksa, who was terrible last night as well. Vigneault had a few words about him as well:
"With Kevin, I think he can be better. (It's) my job to get the most out of these guys."
If I was a coach I'm not sure if I'd use words through the media about specific players to motivate them. Of course, the media is going to single out players' performances and ask the questions, so it would be hard not to be honest about it. You heard Nonis talking about Bieksa's performance after the game to the media as well, so it's not just Vigneault.
I take this whole story from TSN as a soap opera-style blown-out-of-proportion waste of time. The Canucks will get better. But it isn't just Bieksa and Mitchell that have to be better.

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Waiting For Stanley was created in June 2006.