NHL on TSN Quiz: Which Canadien needs to step up most?

TSN.ca Staff
4/22/2011 10:52:06 PM
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Each week, the NHL on TSN panel voices its opinions on the hot topics of the day in the Wednesday Night Hockey Quiz.

As a follow-up, TSN.ca offers you the opportunity to chime in on all the big issues with our insiders. Read up on all the questions and answers from TSN's hockey experts, and put in your own two cents on our popular Your Call feature.

Question No. 1: Which is the most damning stat of all for the Vancouver Canucks: the fact Corey Crawford has two assists in his last two games (more than the Sedins have points in the last two games), Roberto Luongo allowing 10 goals in the last 40 shots (.750 save percentage), or Duncan Keith with three goals (outscoring the entire Canucks team through the last two games)?

Aaron Ward: Corey Crawford is a moderately embarrassing stat anytime you're outscored by a goalie, but the more telling stat for me is David Bolland. Two games into this series, he right now is tied with Henrik Sedin for points, with four points in the series. Stealing from Bob Mackenzie's book of cliches "Your best players need to be your best players" and at this point for the Canucks, they just aren't.

Craig MacTavish: Roberto Luongo. You can survive the other two things that happened to your team, but you can't survive these numbers, 10 goals in 40 shots. Luongo had an outstanding regular season and provided great expectations for the Vancouver Canucks fans going in, but 10 goals in 40 shots... you can't win.

Bob McKenzie: Corey Crawford. The most damning thing is that the Sedins have one goal between them in two games where the team could clinch and put the Blackhawks down and out and they haven't stepped up. Crawford has two points in those two games and that's all you need to know.

Question No. 2: Which no-show in the goal column has most hindered the Canucks drive to finish off the Blackhawks: Alex Burrows, Ryan Kesler, Henrik Sedin?

McKenzie: Ryan Kesler. He's had 20 shots on goal, it's not like he's not getting his chances, but he hasn't been able to put one in. You get the feeling if he gets one that there might be a dam busting here and he might get all sorts. He's the emotional leader of this team, while the Sedins are traditionally the offensive leaders of this team and you feel like you need Kesler to be the catalyst and light the fire.

Ward: Ryan Kesler. You can only go so far with skill players. Guys built in the mold of Kesler have grit, are true competitors, and have leadership. These are the guys who get you to the promise land, get you above and beyond. You look for the leadership of Kesler to get Vancouver on the right track and headed past Chicago.

MacTavish: Ryan Kesler. You can't have a 41 goal scorer go dry in the playoffs, especially in these dire circumstances.

Question No. 3: Which Canadien needs to reassert himself the most to win Game 5 for Montreal: Brian Gionta (goalless after brilliant Game 1), Scott Gomez or Jaroslav Spacek (both minus-4 in their last two games)?

MacTavish: Jaroslav Spacek. The pair of Spacek and Sopel are an experienced pair. Sopel was on a Stanley Cup winning championship team last year, so this should be a real reliable pair for Jacques Martin and they are making far too many mental mistakes. A lot of bad things are happening when these two are on the ice.

Ward: Brian Gionta. It's almost enough just to say because he's their captain, but after his outburst in Boston with two goals and plus-2, he right now is a minus-5 and he's only managed one assist. He is the epitome of a sparkplug for the Montreal Canadiens, as he goes so will go the Canadiens, he has to be the guy who goes to the tough spots.

McKenzie: Brian Gionta. The Montreal Canadiens have changed their M.O. and it's not working for them. They are actually outplaying the Bruins and losing and Gionta is not scoring. The usual M.O. for the successful Canadiens last year and this year: get outshot by 10 or more and have Gionta come down the ice and score that back-breaking goal that takes the life out of you. That's what they need.

Question No. 4: If the Coyotes were to move back to Winnipeg, should they reclaim the Jets name or carve out a brand new identity?

McKenzie: Jets. I would personally like to see if the team is back in Winnipeg, call them the Jets. The NHL technically owns the name and I don't think the folks that would own the team in Winnipeg have any interest in being the Jets, so it probably won't happen. But I'd like to see it be the Jets.

Ward: Jets. I say reclaim it. There is automatic identity to history and my short-lived Jets career. I thought it would have been a great place to play and a great uniform.

MacTavish: Jets. I think they should keep the Jets and the picture of the Queen that used to hang behind the opposition's net.

Brian Gionta (Photo: Francois Lacasse/NHLI via Getty Images)


(Photo: Francois Lacasse/NHLI via Getty Images)
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