Jason Kurylo: NHL Slow To Recognize Sedin

Henrik Sedin is the ninth different player to etch his name on the Art Ross trophy in the past nine seasons. He finished the 2009-2010 season with 112 points, which puts him alongside guys like Guy Lafleur, Wayne Gretzky, Mario Lemieux and Bobby Orr. His effort this year has been every bit as Herculean as the local media is saying; to put his club record total in perspective, when Pavel Bure scored 110 in 1992-93, the Russian Rocket didn’t even rate top ten status in league scoring.

Despite this remarkable season, in which Henrik played 19 games without his brother Daniel, the NHL website took nearly 24 hours to even include his name among their season-ending headlines:

 Where's Henrik?

Hank – the league leader in points – was nowhere to be found. “Crosby, Stamkos tie for ‘Rocket’ Richard trophy”, and “Ovechkin’s trophy bids come up short in finale” are articles that no doubt mention the Vancouver Canuck forward, but seriously, what does a Sedin have to do to get some love from the league? Stamkos and Crosby both rate video highlights on the main NHL.com page – is Henrik’s four-point final game against Calgary available? Daniel’s outstanding hat-trick goal? Nothin’.

It was only a quick email and letter blitz by Vancouver fans that moved the league to change things. Now the site bears the headline it should, “Henrik Sedin wins Art Ross”, and links to a video clip of Daniel’s between-the-legs hat trick goal against Mikka Kiprusoff.

The NHL has long used Crosby and Ovechkin as their poster boys. Other past winners of the Gary Bettman-era Art Ross, like Jarome Iginla, Jaromir Jagr and Joe Thornton, are all, for a lack of better term, sexy. Betts can sell those guys to the American networks. Henrik Sedin, though? Hardly a GQ cover candidate. League officials will put on their Kodak moment smiles in Las Vegas, and they’ll probably come up with some marketing department spin to spew. They’ve already exploited the “Swedish Twins” bit in one TV spot a couple of years ago, right? But you have got to know that league executives and broadcast brass were cheering for Ovechkin and Crosby to tie up the scoring race on the final day.

How bitter should we be, really? Hard to say. With or without Bettman’s henchmen supporting our boy, Henke will be bringing back to GM Place a major piece of hardware that Vancouver has never seen before: the Art Ross trophy.

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Canucks Sign Aaron Volpatti Of Brown University

Aaron VolpattiThe Vancouver Canucks have announced the signing of Brown University’s Aaron Volpatti. In keeping with club policy, terms of the deal were not released.

Volpatti, a 6′-2″ 215 pound forward, is a native of Revelstoke, BC., has drawn a lot of attention with his aggressive, hard hitting style, and he also possesses a nice scoring touch. In a recent interview Volpatti said he had heard from Vancouver, Nashville and Edmonton and Boston, but that being from British Columbia the Canucks were certainly a favoured destination. 

In 37 games this season, Volpatti notched 17 goals, 15 assists and led Brown with 115 penalty minutes.

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Coming Live To A Computer Near You: Canucks Launch Live Streaming

Can’t get to a TV for the Canucks game? If you have a computer handy, you’re in BC and the game is on Sportsnet, you’ll be able to watch the new live stream at Canucks.com.

After a couple of recent test runs the Canucks will be airing all remaining Rogers Sportsnet broadcast for free on Canucks.com, with no registration required. The only requirements are a computer and bandwidth to handle the streaming video, and an IP address located in British Columbia.

Live Streamed Canucks Games

“Streaming live games on Canucks.com has been a priority for our organization. We have successfully worked through the many logistics and are fortunate to have a great partner in Rogers Sportsnet.”, said Victor De Bonis, CEO of Canucks Sports & Entertainment. “As an organization we are committed to investing in digital media and we will continue to explore the different ways we can engage our loyal fans.”

The technology makes use of the NHL Game Center interface and from the sample I’ve seen, it  provides excellent picture quality. There are also live stats available in the form of widgets. There is an additional plug-in to install if you want the advanced features such as rewind etc.

The folks at Canucks have been working hard on this project for a couple of years now, and are one of the first, if not the first team in the league to offer live streaming of their games.

Check it out for the next Rogers Sportsnet Canucks telecast!

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Canucks For Kids Telethon Goes This Sunday

Canucks For Kids FundThis Sunday the Canucks take on the Calgary Flames at General Motors place, and the organization will be taking on issues that effect our children on a daily basis. The annual Canucks For Kids Telethon will also take place, and the Canucks organization needs your help to help the the kids.

Earlier this week Henrik and Daniel Sedin announced a generous donation $1.5 Million dollars to BC Children’s Hospital. Through the telethon, the organization hopes to be able to help so many other children who are struck with illness and who are in need.

During Sunday’s game which will be aired on Sportsnet, you’ll be able  to learn more about the money is utilized and the impact it has on these kids.

There are three ways you can help:

1. Donate using the secure online server, or
2. Call 604-899-4646, or
3. Make a cheque to the Canucks for Kids Fund and mail to:

Canucks for Kids Fund
800 Griffiths Way
General Motors Place
Vancouver, B.C.
V6B 6G1

Pavol Demitra/KidsSince it was first created 25 years ago, the Canucks for Kids Fund has granted over $28 million dollars to charities in British Columbia serving children and their families. There is no greater reward than making British Columbia a better place for families and children in need. If you can help, please make a donation, and help the kids!

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Canucks Acquire Andrew Alberts (Defenseman) For 3rd Round Pick in 2010

The Vancouver Canucks have acquired defenseman Andrew Alberts  in exchange for a 3rd round pick in 2010. Alberts has 10 points this season (2G, 8A) and is a plus sevin after appearing in 62 games for Carolina. Alberts is a big defenseman at 6’5 218 pounds and has played 4 seasons in the NHL.

http://www.sportsnet.ca/hockey/nhl/players/Andrew_Alberts

Stay tuned for more information.

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