Saturday, January 31, 2009

Demitra unhappy with Vigneault's line juggling

Uh-oh. The coach-killing ensues. From the Province:

Demitra, who is expected to miss his third straight game with a groin injury tonight, expressed his displeasure with the rotating lines.

"Noboby likes that," Demitra said. "When you play with different guys all the time, it's tough.

"This game, it's not easy to score goals anymore and everyone can play hockey so it's hard. When you play with the same guys all the time, it's a much easier game. When I had my best years, I played with the same two guys for like four or five years. I played with (Scott) Mellanby and (Keith) Tkachuk for like five years straight.
"It's an easy game when you play with the same guys all the time."

Demitra is hoping he will play with Mats Sundin again when he's healthy.

Opinion #1
I think most fans would agree with Pavol's displeasure. I think it's a double-edged sword. Vigneault gives playing minutes to those who EARN IT. That involves shuffling lines to bump players up and down. But hypocritically, he won't separate the Sedins, even if they stink it up for a few games. You can't have that double-standard.

Opinion #2
It's almost as if Vigneault is a knee-jerk kind of coach, and maybe needs a little more patience with his lines at times. He looks for instant chemistry. If he finds it he sticks with it. If he finds it and loses it he switches up, most of the time.

Opinion #3
Besides his defence, AV has obviously been the most content with the Sedins and Kesler and Burrows, and I suppose Hordichuk and Johnson. I think it's fair to say that those guys put out more consistently than the rest. But it gets pretty easy to question the work ethic and productivity of the rest. Let's start with the whistle-blower named Demitra. He is streaky at best. He can be a floater. He can be a defensive hazard. Then he can be brilliant. That isn't going to cut it with Vigneault. Pyatt, Bernier, Hansen, Wellwood and Raymond (Sundin gets a pass for now, but not for much longer), have all been great at times yet eventually turn into duds when given the chance with more minutes on a scoring line. Can we fairly blame Vigneault for that? How patient are we expecting AV to be? At what point can we say that those players currently lack the skill at the NHL level and are not top 6 forwards?
Beyond the imbalance of favoritism shown towards the Twins, Kesler and Burrows, which is both fair and unfair at times, I support Vigneault's style. Work hard, get results and you get promoted.

Opinion #4
Now, look at who is doing the coach bashing...Demitra. The guy who isn't even playing right now because **big fucking surprise** he's injured AGAIN. The guy who kissed the ass of his former agent and now Canucks GM Mike Gillis to play here and play here under his own ideals on how the team should be coached. The guy who I should have punched in the mouth when I ran into him in Vancouver 2 months back, rather than slap him on the shoulder. Where is this media leak going to get Demitra? Is he truly speaking for the rest of the team or out of selfish intent? Is this going to make him a revolutionary? The players have already stated week that it isn't AV, it's them who are to step it up.
This isn't what the team needed right now. Or, maybe I'm blind. Maybe this idiot is going to get Vigneault fired. Maybe he's going to talk his sorry ass out of town. Does Pavol have a no-trade clause?
I don't know anymore.
I work in management. If an employee pulled something like this on me there would be repercussions. I would flog this fucker right now. What is he contributing to this team in it's darkest hour? Lip service. And he's getting paid $4 million for it.
It will be interesting to hear Vigneault's response. It will be even more interesting (or possibly heartbreaking) to see what happens if this team doesn't start winning soon.

Keep in mind though, that upper management has went on record this week saying that Alain Vigneault is not going to be fired. Alain Vigneault then threw out an open challenge to his players yesterday, including saying
“Players have been treated real well by this organization,” Vigneault said. “Since Mike (general manager Mike Gillis) has come in here, he’s gone out of his way to make sure they have everything they need. It’s payback time. It’s time to play here. That’s what we expect from them and that’s what we’re going to get tomorrow.”
Looks like all of management is tight in Vancouver doesn't it?
That would leave Demitra with his ass exposed to the world. That would mean that maybe it is he who needs to be dismissed. You can't start a shit storm without having any backup.

Interestingly enough, these comments from Demitra come on heels of meetings held between Gillis/management and each player individually.

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At January 31, 2009 at 3:35 p.m. , Anonymous Mike said...

Curiously, would you be labeling Sundin a douche if he said the same thing?

I think Demitra is just saying what a ton of people, as outsiders, feel. And to bring up another guy you hate, I'm pretty sure our last captain danced around the same topic. It's certainly not a shock some players don't like it. Kes, Burrows, Bernier...mostly gritty, plug and play guys maybe feel differently. Demitra is at best a pure goal scorer. Maybe he has a point? Maybe he is speaking for some of the other guys too?

I appreciate Demitra spoke his mind. If Vigneault's system was so precious as if to be off limits to criticism, then they wouldn't have had the January they've had (or last March for that matter).

Lastly "flog the fucker" should be the new Canuck mascot. A surly lumberjack walking around the arena screaming at people. I love it.

At January 31, 2009 at 3:46 p.m. , Blogger Sean Zandberg said...

I would NOT be happy if Sundin said that. Bottom line is he wouldn't say that.
This statement by Demitra is either ill-timed, selfish, or both. The staff met with each player and Demitra is the only one running his mouth like this. It's classless. The other players are putting the onus on themselves. Demitra points fingers outwardly. He's a fool.
If Vigneault's system is not precious, then why are guys like Luongo, Hordichuk, Kesler etc all saying that the players need to play within the system?
It is a good system, considering guys like Wellwood Bernier etc aren't panning out right now. We are regaining our "unable to score" tag again.

At January 31, 2009 at 4:45 p.m. , Anonymous Mike said...

My guess is that these players are all affected differently by Vigneault's juggling. Luongo is a goalie, Kesler is a checking center and Hordichuk gets, what, maybe five minutes a game? The latter two have no right to bitch about line juggling.

Demitra, like Naslund, are a bit different. Their job is to score and vigneault's system is notoriously hard to do just that. It's made worse by having to juggle expectations of different line mates shift to shift. My guess anyway. The Sedins can't complain because they're never apart.

Maybe it's an ill-timed comment - hell maybe it was meant to be off the record - but whatever the case I think what Demitra said is how a ton of people watching the team feel. And for that reason alone I like what he said. Besides if this team is so fragile that Demitra's comment will negatively affect them that's all the more reason for internal change.

And isn't Vigneault's system, like any coach's system, only as good as the record it achieves? At this point AV's system is failing; we should see what Pete DeBoer is doing since the Canucks are essentially the old Panthers now.

At January 31, 2009 at 6:44 p.m. , Blogger Judy said...

Nice piece of writing ya' done there, Sean. If I was your teacher, I'd give you an A+. Meanwhile, I'm sitting at the back of the class learning from you guys. (Teach me...oh, teach me.)

(Toronto just defeated Pittsburgh. There's hope.)

At January 31, 2009 at 7:31 p.m. , Blogger Sean Zandberg said...

2-0 Wild early in the first....

oh how fragile these guys are

At January 31, 2009 at 7:35 p.m. , Blogger Judy said...

I've already thrown up, twice I guess. Please, no more!

At January 31, 2009 at 7:41 p.m. , Blogger Sean Zandberg said...

Mike: I don't care if Demitra said what the FANS are feeling. What about the TEAM?
I guess it's true that the system is only as good as the record implies. But good defence must be achieved. It wins games and Cups.
Oh, and Demitra is a gutless puke. Fuck him. He hasn't earned the right to say anything like that. And like I said, no other players was saying that to the media.
At the end of the day, if the players won't play AV's system the coach will get fired. It's a shitty reality.

At February 1, 2009 at 12:29 a.m. , Anonymous rsm said...

With regards to the Sedins, from all that I've seen they are simply consistent. All their stats show that if there are down and up periods, they always come out looking pretty good, against pretty good opposition. They outscore their opponents by a fair margin. Mirtle had stats up the other day on it for this season, and heck LT over in the oilersphere even likes the way they look statwise. I think they've earned their spot... now if there was a winger they could keep on a regular basis that was any good... *sigh*

At February 1, 2009 at 12:00 p.m. , Blogger Sean Zandberg said...

Oh Anson Carter...where are you now?


At April 15, 2014 at 12:47 a.m. , Blogger Diana Davis said...

The staff met with each player and Demitra is the only one running his
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