The Vancouver Canucks stand on the verge of yet another massive failure in the Stanley Cup Playoffs, already trailing 3-0 to the San Jose Sharks in the Western Conference Quarterfinals. If the Canucks are able to pull off the improbably comeback, a major shakeup is likely on the horizon for this organization.
But some of the players on this Canucks roster clearly don’t intend on going quietly. A locker room that has never been short on comments, whether in support of teammates or criticism of the other team, has continued to make waves in the media. This time, it’s Kevin Bieksa getting noticed.
Unfortunately, he’s getting noticed for the wrong reasons. The Canucks have been complaining about the Sharks throughout this entire series. Whether it’s “cheating” on faceoffs or embellishing in order to get calls, both of which make most on this team complete hypocrites, the Canucks haven’t been short on feedback for San Jose.
On Monday afternoon, Bieksa took the comments to a new level. Not only did he call out specific members of the Sharks, but chose to question their nationalities:
“Thornton, another so-called Canadian, supposed to play the game with integrity, gets slashed and takes his glove off and shakes his hand. Referee takes a couple seconds to look at that and make a call, and that’s an important part of the game. That’s a critical time of the game where we go down two men, and these are two guys that are supposed to be playing the game with integrity.”
The other guy Bieksa was referring to was Logan Couture, along with Joe Thornton. There is certainly a firestorm on the horizon for this whole “so-called Canadians” thing. There’s a reason that the Canucks, Bieksa in particular, have gotten this reputation that they carry throughout the league.
The bottom line is that the Canucks can cry foul and complain about what the Sharks are or are not doing all they want. Cheating on faceoffs and embellishing isn’t the reason that they’re down 3-0 in this series. There are a variety of other factors contributing to that. And pretty much all of them come back on the poor performances of Canucks players, whether up front, on defense, or in goal.
Perhaps the Canucks should worry more about what they’re doing in their own locker room, rather than what the Sharks are doing. Unless, of course, they’re trying to maintain their reputation as the true faceoff cheaters and divers. If they can’t figure it out, several of these players, and a coach, are going to be looking for jobs this summer.