Forget the 'conspiracy', Canucks have other issues

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Canucks.jpgIt happens in all sports, not just the NHL. Fans become convinced
that there is a ‘conspiracy’ in place against their team, some sort of
call from a higher authority that determines the trajectory a team
takes. This is amped up even more, when penalty calls and decisions made
by NHL officials can have a direct result on a playoff series.

Detroit
Red Wings fans are convinced the NHL has it out for their team.

Dallas
Mavericks fans are convinced the NBA decided their loss to the Heat in
the finals (although with NBA officiating, that may have some merit).

Now,
it seems, the Vancouver Canucks could have a target on their backs. With Mike Murphy, former coach of the Kings, as the VP of hockey operations there are claims that he’s calling the shots in favor of the Kings.

I’m
not buying it.

Bad calls are made against every team, in every
sport, all the time. In fact, as
Greg Wyshynski puts it on Puck Daddy
, the War Room decisions are a
consensus of a group of people. It’s not just Murphy making the
decisions.

If the NHL really had it out for the Red
Wings, then the league wouldn’t have called back several borderline
goals by the Dallas Stars two years ago. They wouldn’t have given Todd
Bertuzzi a goal this season when he “kicked” it in when the back of his
skate.

What is really unfortunate, is when the media plays up the
conspiracy theories as well. From
Ed Willes of The Province:

Oh, the call on
Daniel’s non-goal will make for some talk-show fodder
today, particularly because it’s now clear the NHL wants the Kings to
win.

To be fair, Willes’ article harps on how the
Canucks are doing everything wrong if they hope to beat the Kings, and
that should really be the focus of this series. Forget the penalty calls
or the controversial goal; the NHL makes horrible war room decisions
all the time, not just against the Canucks or the Red Wings.

Let’s
talk about how Roberto Luongo looks just as bad as he did coming back
from the Olympics. How Henrik Sedin is struggling to live up
expectations. How the Vancouver defense is left standing around and
watching as the Kings forwards overmatch them game after game. That is
where the focus should be. Forget conspiracies, it’s just a way of
forgetting what the real issues are with your team.

Despite tough fight, Stars hand Wild their sixth straight loss

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The Minnesota Wild put together the kind of effort that would beat a lot of NHL teams on Tuesday. Unfortunately for that beleaguered group, it wasn’t enough to edge the Dallas Stars.

Despite generating 40 shots on goal and generating 1-0 and 2-1 leads, the Wild lost to the Stars 4-3 in overtime. With that, they’ve lost six straight games.

(The view doesn’t get much prettier if you pull away a little further, either, as Minnesota’s only won once in the last month, going 1-9-2 in their last 12.)

Ultimately, the Stars’ big guns were too powerful. Tyler Seguin generated two assists and so did Jamie Benn, who set up John Klingberg‘s overtime game-winning goal.

Again, the effort sure seemed to be there for the Wild, even if they’re far beyond the point of accepting moral victories.

As frustrating as this must be, Minnesota’s not that far from a playoff spot. Still, it has to sting to see “Close, but not good enough” as a prevailing theme as of late.

Royal beating: Lucic, Kings crush Bruins 9-2

As Boston Bruins' Patrice Bergeron (37) looks on Los Angeles Kings' Milan Lucic waves to the crowd after a tribute to him was played on the screen during the first period of an NHL hockey game in Boston Tuesday, Feb. 9, 2016. (AP Photo/Winslow Townson)
AP
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The Boston Bruins welcomed Milan Lucic back on Tuesday. Maybe they shouldn’t have extended such a warm welcome to the Los Angeles Kings overall, however.

You won’t see many games as lopsided as this one, at least in 2015-16, as the Kings walloped the Bruins by a humbling score of 9-2.

Lucic wasn’t just there, either, as he scored a goal and an assist in his quite triumphant return to Boston.

Tuukka Rask had a short night in Boston’s net, yet it wasn’t as if Jonas Gustavsson enjoyed his time. It was a pretty sound beating by all accounts.

This dominant win is a heck of a way for the Kings to begin an imposing seven-game road trip, which continues against the New York Islanders on Thursday. The Bruins probably want to burn the tape on this one themselves, as they’re about to head on a six-game road trip.

Video: Evander Kane believes he won his fights vs. Alex Petrovic

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The Florida Panthers are beating up the Buffalo Sabres where it counts – on the scoreboard – but Evander Kane was happy to highlight his perceived victories in a couple bouts.

Buffalo’s power forward fought Alex Petrovic twice on Tuesday, and Kane wasn’t shy about holding up a “2-0.”

You can watch the second fight above, and the first one below, via Hockey Fights by way of MSG:

This GIF might just say it all, really:

Update: Apparently they fought again moments after this post went up.

Probably safe to call it a rivalry between the two, right?

The Panthers ultimately won 7-4.

Fight video: Yes, a visor-breaking punch

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Some hockey players resist the urge to wear a visor, at least if they’re given that choice.

Perhaps a few will say “Hey, Nathan Beaulieu will just punch it off anyway.”

Maybe not, but Beaulieu provided a rather unique moment in his fight with Cedric Paquette during the Montreal Canadiens – Tampa Bay Lightning game. You can watch that bout in the video above, and see a cut on the Lightning pest’s face from that blow.

Want it in GIF form? OK then: