Can someone please tell the Sedins the hockey season is still going on?
Through the first three games of the Chicago series, the brothers combined for nine points and looked well on their way to competing for the Conn Smythe Trophy. Since then, each twin has one point and that’s it.
What happened? Well, as could be expected, the Blackhawks clamped down on the top line and the defense-minded Predators have continued that game plan. This has, in part, helped Ryan Kesler flourish on the second line, but as the Preds realign their strategy to defend Kesler as if he’s the top line the Sedins may get more breathing room.
But that doesn’t appear to be the only problem. The Canucks have been playing a brand of fast-paced and physical hockey that has set the tone and controlled it at times. The leaders in the energy category to this point have been players such as Kesler, Alex Burrows, Maxim Lapierre, Alex Edler, Kevin Bieksa, Tanner Glass – and that’s only to name a few.
The Sedins, on the other hand, just look a gear behind everyone. It’s as if the team moved on to post-season passion and the twins stayed behind in a regular season malaise. Their feet aren’t moving enough, they’re trying to play almost too patient and they haven’t successfully been creating the space necessary to create their patented plays.
Can the Canucks get passed the Preds if the Sedins continue to struggle on the scoresheet? Yes, but only because Nashville will beat you with tight defense and timely offense. The Canucks can play that game as well and have a few other scoring options as well.
But if Vancouver does find a way to pull this one out, they’ll find themselves up against a much more potent San Jose or Detroit who have an immense amount of reliable offense to turn to. And if the Sedins continue not to show up, then the Canucks will be in trouble.
Roberto Luongo had his rough patch and turned it around, now the Sedins have to show why they are leaders on this team and do the same.
This article was originally published in Metro News. For more hockey commentary, check out Metro Sports.