Claude Lemieux never played for the Vancouver Canucks, but the team might as well use a turtling Lemieux as their third jersey logo at this point.
It appears that Canucks GM Mike Gillis must believe that his current corps of creeps isn’t sufficient because Nick Kypreos reports that they’re eye-balling Dallas Stars pest Steve Ott. In other news, Adrian Dater identifies Cody McLeod as a Plan B if Ott doesn’t work out.
As much as the team is defined by the Sedins twins’ brilliance, the Canucks also employ some of the NHL’s most irritating figures. Alex Burrows and Maxim Lapierre are about as grating as hockey players can get. Aaron Rome bends and breaks the rules. Even less direct offenders like Roberto Luongo and Kevin Bieksa generate significant scorn.
Adding Ott would make this team so despicable in many hockey minds that pun-lovers would need to work overtime. (My submission: Villaincover.)
The Canadian city has been breathlessly described as a northwest treasure, much like Portland or Seattle. Hockey seems to be the one area where things get ugly, though, as the team’s perceived evils keep getting upstaged by their most regrettable fans.*
Both Ott and McLeod would make the Canucks a tougher team to play against (McLeod already has 154 PIM this season).
Ott would fit in nicely with Burrows in the sense that for all his shenanigans, he’s a heck of a talent. While he lacks Burrows’ finishing touch, Ott’s offensive skills often get overshadowed. Beyond that, he’s notably versatile; as his appearance in HBO 24/7 might remind you, Ott’s a strong faceoff asset.
Kypreos reports that Dallas wants a significant piece for him, though, so we’ll have to see if the Canucks will get another huge injection of obnoxiousness – or a smaller one with McLeod.
* – To be fair, Vancouverites have done a great job of showing that the vast lot are upstanding folks.