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Hockey, Sports

Saturday rematch with Leafs looms large for Canucks Nation

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Wyatt Arndt Nov 29, 2016 5:44 am 784
Ryan miller fight
CBC

Remember, remember, the fifth of November…

Yes it was on this day the King of Pain Kadri himself (minus 1 for not using “Prince” for the alliteration) leveled Daniel Sedin with what 99% of people on the west coast thought was a dirty hit.

Remember Kadri? You might remember him by his other paper nicknames. Fat…so?, Killer, Baby, and Wild Man, which if combined makes him the King of Wild Fat Baby Killers. Or King Fat Baby Wild Killer. Or Killer of Kings, The Wild Fat Baby’s story of triumph and victory. Mix and match at your own discretion.

But I digress.

Saturday is the rematch between these two teams at Rogers Arena. Because of the events of November 5th, there promises to be a little more energy in the crowd than a typical Canucks-Leafs game.

Now, Vancouver was pretty much united in their dislike of this hit. Many people wanted to see a suspension, to try and deter people from going for hits like these in the future. Yes, we used to cheer Scott Stevens on back in the day for doing this, but with what we know of brain injuries now, it’s lost some of that cool factor it once had. Oddly enough we enjoy seeing our heroes live long lives, devoid of symptoms of previous head trauma.

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The reaction in Toronto? Not quite on board with that. They felt Kadri was shoulder to shoulder. That Sedin ducked into it. That Kadri was just finishing his check. In fact, Kadri should be hailed as a backchecking legend for doing his god damn job so diligently. Who are you to question El Kadri??

bret-hart

The counter to that from Vancouver of course was “what if someone ran Marner or Matthews like that?” To which Toronto fans said “yeah but Alex Burrows speared someone” to which Vancouver said “what does that have to do with this?” To which Toronto said “why can’t you guys dress up for work properly, you bunch of hippies.” To which Vancouver then threw a yoga mat at them, which led to a lot more east coast vs west coast battles. At one point Dan Murphy engaged Steve Simmons in a rap off. It got weird.

Now, the hit was very contentious amongst fans. It was also a hit that NHL GMs couldn’t agree upon. Columbus GM Jarmo Kekalainen in fact campaigned to punish this kind of hit earlier in the year but was denied.

There is always a line of “how much physicality should you take out of hockey” that will be in the limelight in debates like this. There is no question the thrill of a huge hit is a big draw in hockey. Hell, Canada’s reputation and lifeblood in hockey has been “kick ass hockey” for generations. Score goals, and if that doesn’t work? Break their ankles! I won’t lie, as a kid it was a pretty easy thing to be proud about. It’s still an easy thing to be proud about. Who doesn’t love watching your heroes kick the crap out of the other guys?

And when going for big hits, in a game that goes at high speeds, bad things can happen, mistakes can be made. It’s just when things do go bad, teams that are on the receiving end of a borderline hit want to see punishment handed out. Do the crime, do the time, as they say. You want to ride that line? Fine, but you’re going to have to pay for it if you cross it.

Vancouver fans have a lot of practice of knowing how this works, having watched Raffi Torres walk that line, often times going past it, sometimes hitting that line from behind into the boards, and getting suspended for it.

But, Kadri wasn’t suspended. Leaving Canucks fans infuriated. Leaving Leafs fans smugly condescending. It left people in Vancouver wanting revenge.

Now, we all remember Steve Moore. Nobody in Vancouver wants to repeat that, in any way, shape, or form.

But, what people do want December 3rd? A playoff type intensity game from the Canucks. They want Vancouver to take some healthy, legal runs at Kadri. They want to see if the King of Pain enjoys his own medicine. They want to see some justice.

Jussshhhhhhhhhhtisssssssssshhhhhhhhhhhh!

And dannnnnnshhhhhhhing!….?

OK well fair enough.

The point is, this is sports. Their guy did something bad to our guy. So we want to see some old fashioned vigilante justice.

And again, I cannot stress enough: nobody wants to see runs to the head of Kadri.

They want to see legal hits, making his life hell in the corners, and perhaps a mean word or two tossed his way. Maybe Erik Gudbranson keeps a hockey glove soaking in an outhouse for a month and uses that glove to face wash Kadri in a scrum or something. Talk about how Kadri’s favourite band is overrated.

Not to bring up 2011 arbitrarily, but Brad Marchand speedbagging Daniel Sedin left an imprint on this town. So did the entire 2011 Stanley Cup run. Watching another team take liberties with yours is hard to watch.

There has always been an element of “ok well **** it, let’s just kick their asses” flowing in the undercurrent of Canucks Nation. And that really hasn’t been a part of the Canuck identity for a while now. That isn’t to say outscoring your opponent and outskilling them isn’t awesome, it’s just sometimes you simply want to watch your boys throw down. Sports is primitive, this is a primitive feeling, and sometimes we like to revel in our primitiveness, ok?

So December 3rd, here’s hoping for an old fashioned, physical battle between Canadian foes. Maybe it will be overhyped and nothing will happen. Maybe Bettman will “be in attendance” to scold both teams into passivity. But maybe we’ll have one hell of a game, where both teams bring their A-game, and we see what each team is made of.

And if that isn’t enough, here are some tweets from Toronto fans to get you foaming at the mouth.

#WarVancouver

(I am well aware there are homer fans/differing views on both sides of the Twitter world, relax)

Nothing gets me angrier than players shooting the puck and not paying attention to the hit from the side. Stupid Daniel.

Got us! Cognitive dissonance was way too high for us, so we lashed out at Kadri. Transference at its finest. Freud would be so proud.

Well, I mean, he WAS shooting the puck. That’s kind of like ducking?

New rule: Player must be in coma before it’s recognized as a potentially bad hit.

Well kale is disgusting, so this tweet is based on lies.

“Danny, you’re not bleeding from the ears yet, it couldn’t have been a head shot.”

HAHAH BECAUSE GIRLS ARE INFERIOR AT THE SPORTING SPORTS! NAILED IT!

His head was looking at the net. Where he was shooting.

The math checks out? Is that how this works? Is this actually DoPS?

Did he sell it because he’s Swedish? Would a guy from Red Deer have skated it off and shotgunned a beer?

Is there a factory of “The Hockey Guys” I’m not aware of Rob?

I do applaud Ryan for including the pertinent “Sedin-hate-bias”, though. At least he’s honest.

HAHAH FEMALES SUCK!!!! YA BRO!

Well as long as he scored. It should be like the movie The Purge. Anytime a player scores in the NHL, the other team can do whatever they want to him for 15 seconds following the goal.

#MakeNHLGreatAgain


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Wyatt Arndt
Daily Hive Vancouver sports writer

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