Mike Gillis

Gillis: Canucks couldn’t get their “emotions together” after beating Boston in January


Canucks GM Mike Gillis took a grilling from reporters this morning in Vancouver, two days after his Presidents’ Trophy-winning team couldn’t advance past the first round, losing in five games to the Los Angeles Kings.

A recap of the major points:

—-Gillis says the Canucks never “collectively got their emotions together” after beating the Bruins in Boston on Jan. 7 in a game that was “almost like playing a Stanley Cup final game in the middle of the season.”

—-Gillis says he has “every bit of confidence” in coach Alain Vigneault and that the media criticism “gets exasperating sometimes” given Vigneault is “the winningest coach in this team’s history, we just won two Presidents’ Trophies, lost in the seventh game on the Stanley Cup final.” That said, he fell short of guaranteeing Vigneault would be back next season.

—-Before any decisions can be made about coaches or players, Gillis says his own performance and future will need to be discussed: “I am the president of this team and the general manager, it is my responsibility what happens on this team. So before we get to anybody else we are going to discuss my role and how I have done.”

—-On the goaltending front, Gillis thinks Roberto Luongo and Cory Schneider can continue to co-exist on the same team. However, he needs to meet with them and the coaching staff to see if it can be a “workable relationship moving forward.”

—-The Canucks won’t resort to a defensive philosophy, even after defense-first teams like the Blues, Kings and Predators beat offensive-minded teams like the Sharks, Canucks and Red Wings in the first round.

—-Based on what he heard at the GMs meetings, Gills says the league wants the game to be offensive, so that’s how he’ll try to build his team: “I believe in offense and I think the league does too. If not, they should change the name of the game to ‘goalie'”

—-On why he traded Cody Hodgson at the deadline: “There clearly were issues that were ongoing. I spent more time on Cody’s issues than every other player combined on our team the last three years. We made a determination that he didn’t want to be here, we built him into something we could move. There were six young players that I would have traded him for if any of them were ever made available. One was made available at the trade deadline and it was Zack [Kassian].”

Here’s more from Gillis about the coaching situation:

Related: Luongo: I’ll waive my no-trade clause

It looks like Havlat won’t make Panthers

Martin Havlat
Leave a comment

As PHT’s mentioned before, the Florida Panthers stand as a fascinating contrast between youth and experience.

Let’s not kid ourselves, though; fresh faces usually beat out gray beards, at least when it comes to teams that are still trying to build toward contender status.

While it’s by no means official, two Panthers beat writers – the Miami Herald’s George Richards and the Florida Sun-Sentinel’s Harvey Fialkov – report that the Panthers are likely to pass on Martin Havlat.

It wasn’t just about the likes of Jonathan Huberdeau and Nick Bjugstad leading the charge. Other young Panthers (maybe most notably Quinton Howden and Connor Brickley) made the team, thus making Havlat less necessary.

One would assume that it might be tough for the 34-year-old to find work, at least if he insists upon only an NHL deal.

Health issues continue to dog him, but he’s no longer one of those guys who tantalizes with talent when he is healthy enough to play.

Havlat also doesn’t really bring much to the table defensively. While other veterans can kill penalties and show a little more verstaility, Havlat’s greatest selling point is scoring.

Could this be it for a solid career that may nonetheless end with a “What if?” or two?

Silfverberg is set to practice again after Torres hit

Jakob Silfverberg
Leave a comment

Considering all of the controversy surrounding the 41-game suspension for Raffi Torres, some might have lost track of the guy who received that hit: Jakob Silfverberg.

The good news is that, at the moment, it seems like he’s OK.

The Anaheim Ducks announced that he skated on his own and will be involved in the team’s next practice:

That falls in line with some of the fall-out from the hit, as head coach Bruce Boudreau let out a relieved “thank goodness” at the young forward seemingly dodging a bullet.

Here’s video of the hit and the suspension decision:

Silfverberg, 24, enjoyed a nice breakout in 2014-15, especially during the playoffs.

Keep in mind that injuries can sometimes crop up later than expected, especially potential head injuries/concussions. Still, it seems like the initial reaction is that the damage was minimal.