Written by Dani Toth | 15 December 2009

The Province reported today that Wellwood would be back to a healthy scratch again tomorrow night against the Ducks. An exerpt: "At this rate, Wellwood will be joining ex-Canuck Byron Ritchie in Switzerland faster than you'd think." Apparently they can get away this type of journalism if they post it under their White Towel section. After coming back from being a healthy scratch, Wellwood did not inspire last night against the Kings.

Instead Hordichuck will draw in for Wellwood, which is a better move as the Ducks are a more physical team than the Kings are. Though when has Hordichuck really been physical?

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Written by Dani Toth | 13 December 2009

Q. Who is first place in the Western Conference?
Here's a hint: It's not the Sharks.


Surprised? I was a little too as they just kinda crept up into 1st place in the West there. Sure, that Calgary hasn't played as many games yet, but The Royal Half is pretty pleased with it.

So the Canucks are on an 8 game homestand and have now won two games in a row. The game against Atlanta, the Canucks just crushed the Thrashers.The game against Minny on Saturday, well they did have really good offense and luckily had the pleasure of a the Wild's backup goalie Harding, to play against.

And although we may all be happy about the win, there were two things wrong about the game. The first is the faceoff's, which the Canucks came out winning only 20 out of 68 draws equalling a 29% success rate. That sh-t needs to improve. The other was that Luongo, although he stopped a ton of shots, he looked shaky at times. Like when I was watching, I didn't have that feeling of full confidence that he was going to always make the save. The Wild also outshot the Canucks 41 to 29, but I think that stat is tied into the faceoff win rate, so hopefully we'll see them both improve tomorrow night.

On a positive note about our team, Henrik is now only 3 points back from Joe Thornton in points, tied with Marian Gaborik at 41 points. Henrik also notched his 500th career point on Saturday night, all of which for the Canucks

The Canucks have already beat the Kings twice this season, once in LA winning 2-1 in a shootout and the other at home winning 4-1. We won't see them again still April 1st where teams will be struggling to get those last points heading in to the playoffs. The Canucks are just sitting 4 games above .500, but are in 10th spot in the Western Conference. These days just to move up 3 points in the race it feels like it takes 10 games to do it.

The Canucks need to come out strong again tonight, and be as offensive as we've seem them in the past two games. This LA team is gonna look good compared to a couple of season ago, and what's scary is that they are gonna look good for the next few seasons.

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Written by Dani Toth | 13 December 2009

So after watching last night's win over Minnesota, I have come to some conclusions about what the Canucks use as 'their song'. You can see the whole playlist for every song being played at GM Place whether it be during the warmup, during the game or the intermissions here at DJ Dave's blog on Canucks.com.

Now the Canucks actually have been trying to make the music at GM Place better. Of course not everyone will love every song they play, but after many complaints the Canucks began to make the requests more fan interactive. So if you go the Canucks website, you can suggest the 'type of music' you prefer to be played at games or request specific songs that you want to hear. How many Canuck fans who attend games will actually use these channels to voice their opinion on music seems pretty low to me, but hey it's there.

The player intro song that the players skate out to currently is U2's 'Where The Streets Have No Name' which has been brought back after many many requests by fans. This I like. This song has such a history with fans who attend games. The feeling you get, especially if you have attended a playoff game and heard it, it sends shivers down your spine.

But what really chaps me these days is the goal song and song that they play at the end of the game if the team wins.

The current goal song is Green Day's 'Holiday' which is terrible. This needs to change. It's worse than last year's Crowd Chant by Joe Satriani. Now I watch a lot of hockey and I'm not saying that there aren't worse ones out there, example Chicago's choice: Chelsea Dagger by the Fratellis. But maybe this song may only elicit a feeling of anger out of opposing teams, ie any Canucks fan who watched last year playoffs, so perhaps it wouldn't be so bad if you were a Hawks fan? The problem with the Green Day song is that I don't feel like I have that connection with it. Like when the Canucks score a goal, it really just doesn't embody the same feeling that a goal elicits.

The other problem I have with the music is that after a Canucks win at GM Place, DJ Dave playe the Star Wars Theme when the players spill off of the bench onto the ice. As with the goal song, this song just doesn't have the right feel. It is not peppy enough, not enough emotion, and doesn't really make the crowd at GM Place want to cheer for the win that the team just had.

I'm not good with suggestions on what to replace the songs with, but I do think that whoever is in charge of choosing the appropriate goal song or exit song should rethink the songs that we are currently using. Perhaps look to what other teams use and then poll Canucks fans to choose one? Or maybe like in Chicago before Chelsea Dagger was chosen as their goal song, they tried a few different ones out as a player goal song until they decided on Chelsea Dagger.

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Written by Dani Toth | 10 December 2009


So last night I was out with a few friends catching the Vancouver/Nashville game and the Canucks video for the BC Children's Hospital came up in discussion. If you haven't seen the video of it, it's on Canucks.com here. Each player has a card that has a word or a part of a message that they hold up. It's cute, there's no denying that.

But someone I was with had an interesting opinion on the video. The video was made for the BC Children's hospital, whose majority of patients are made up of kids. KIDS. Kids who may or may not be able to read (the really young ones), so a lot of the intention of the video will be lost on them. Would a quick trip to visit the patients in hospital not have been more effective? The visits from the players is what the kids look forward to, a video is not quite the same. Perhaps this was done just because they didn't want to go because of H1N1 at this time (complete speculation) and maybe they will also make a visit to the hospital in addition to the video later in the season.

What do you think? If you were at BC Children's would the video be good enough or would you have preferred a visit from the players?


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Written by Dani Toth | 09 December 2009

Welcome to my first Benched Whale edition of This and That. For those of you who are new to my blog, this is where I address all the Canuck news of the day. Each link may or may not include a line of analysis, wit or sarcasm. Enjoy.


Shane O'Brien has been getting some playing time recently on the roadtrip which leads me to believe that they are trying to entice some team to have interest in him, but really which teams would actually want him?

So, how do you shop a player like O'Brien?
Mike Gillis: Big huge defenseman that really doesn't know how to use his size, can't really embrace his toughness without taking penalties and likes to spend him in your coaches doghouse. Oh, and his price tag is a paltry 1.592 million. He's no Shea Weber or even a Douglas Murray, but he may consider himself that at this point in his career he should be a top 4 defenseman.
-This may or may not have been said by "mike gillis"
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Written by Dani Toth | 09 December 2009


So instead of recapping a terrible Canucks game that was on last night, I won't, but basically it was the Martin Erat show. Instead, I wanted to share something I wrote for Cycle Like the Sedins' Odd Woman Rush feature.

I get asked "Why do you blog?" all the time, (I also get "How did you end up a Lightning fan?" as well but that will have to be another post) so when CLS asked if I would participate in their Odd Woman Rush feature I was all over it. The first segment of the feature has 14 female bloggers submit their answers, I was in the final round up of Part IV. So check out it all of it here at CLS (which has a photos) or if you just want to read my answer, it's tucked away after the jump.

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Written by Dani Toth | 07 December 2009


After almost a full year hanging out at blogger, the Vancity Canuck has joined the Bloguin family! I am thrilled to be the resident Vancouver Canuck blogger on this network of great blogs that are written by bloggers I read and respect.

The site has a new design, a fantastic banner and a new name! Benched Whale can now be easily found at benchedwhale.com

Benched Whale will be a blog about my love and sometimes hate with the mediocrity that is known as the Vancouver Canucks. Did you come here for news and insightful analysis? Oh you did? Well that may or may not happen. What I do try to bring is my own brand of analysis, sarcasm and wit to everything Canucks or hockey related

I am still stunned that the bosses at bloguin said they liked my work, and not just one blog but both of them (the other is my Tampa Bay Lightning blog named The Hockey Bay). So when they asked if I wanted to move both of them over to the bloguin network, clearly the answer was yes. I get a site re-design, spiffy new banner (love it!) but still get the creative control over what I feel like I want to write about.

In addition, one of the things that really swayed me to join was the community of hockey blogs that have joined bloguin. The puck blogs are growing fast here, so it's very exciting to be part of something that feels big. One of the great things about being a blogger is getting the chance to work with other bloggers on collaborative features as well as just having an enemy blog to hate on when writing a game preview.

So enjoy the new site, I know I do. no comments