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The 'Kassassin' locks in


BrowntoBure

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blog-0328146001330668411.jpegOn yet another night where the Vancouver Canucks failed to show up for a first period against the St. Louis Blues there was one guy who was ready to play right off the hop. Zack Kassian single handedly accounted for half of the Canucks shots through one period of play and looked quite dangerous in doing so. He was setting up teammates and driving hard to the net, something this team has been looking for since the departure of Todd Bertuzzi. Mason Raymond, take notes!

If there's one way to find your way into the heart of a Vancouver hockey fan, it's by bringing energy, passion and physicality to the game, and that Kassian did. It seemed as though every singled shift he was covering the full area of the offensive zone delivering blistering hits and as the game progressed it began rubbing off on his teammates. Kassian and Lapierre were credited with 10 hits tonight, all of which being ones that you know the opposing player felt.

After what I saw tonight I contemplated what the possible lines would be for the playoffs:

Daniel-Henrik-Burrows

Higgins- Kesler- Booth

Malhotra- Pahlsson-Hansen

Bitz- Lapierre-Kassian

Bottom 6 is obviously very interchangeable as all of these guys can play.

Over Alain Vigneault's tenure the 4th line of this team has been a revolving door. Be it guys that could fight but not play, or guys that weren't tough enough to strike fear into any opponent. It's only been 2 games but the Canucks appear to have signs of what they have been looking for in Kassian, not only can he play the physical game, but he's displayed flashed of offensive prowess that will give Vigneault the ability to put him on any line and expect success.

With the NHL quite clearly beginning to revert back to the old style of clutch and grab hockey that bored fans to death over the last 2 decades, with less talented teams being able to trap their way through games in the hopes of stealing points, having a guy that can bring this to the team will definitely be a huge asset over what is expected to be another long playoff run.

While many of us are still unsure about what the loss of Cody Hodgson will bring, but you can be sure of one thing. If this is what we can expect from Kassian on a night-to-night basis, the city will fall in love with this kid and he may return the favour in the summer, as the missing piece to what this team needs to reach their ultimate goal.

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So the Canucks traded a third line center for a fourth line clutch and grab winger?? How many minutes will that line get in the playoffs when the bench is shortened?

It seems that the hero Malhotra is on the nose of Canucks fans even after his heroics coming back last playoffs but you have him on the third line.

It could be a great trade for the future but the question I am sure you are asking is "Does it help the Canucks win the Cup this year??"

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What? I said his size will help him play through the clutch and garb and he's also being worked into the lineup... He won't be staying on the 4th line very long. Vigneault wanted the 3rd line to be his checking line, and hodgson isn't that type of player, and the canucks already have kesler and henrik locked up. Its also believed that Hodgsons camp asked for a trade.

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Guest wild fan

Posted

"Kassassin" is the nickname of Matt Kassian of the Minnesota Wild. www.kassassin.com

Canucks are going to have to come up with a different nickname for Zack.

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