Top Ten Derek Dorsett Canuck Moments

The Vancouver Canucks franchise and its fervent fanbase received horrible news this week when it became clear that Derek Dorsett would be unable to continue his NHL career due to recurring neck issues. Dorsett became a Canuck in 2014 and proceeded to play parts of four seasons in Vancouver, at times as the sole source of pugilism on the team. Despite his relatively small stature, Dorsett never backed down from a challenge, and can now retire knowing that he truly “left it all out on the ice.” Here are ten of Dorsett’s greatest moments in a Canuck uniform.

 

Dorsett’s First Canuck Goal Is a Shorthanded Winner

Dorsett’s very first goal as a Canuck has a lot going for it. It’s a shorthanded snipe that comes after a forced turnover by the opposing goaltender. It also happens to come against the hated Edmonton Oilers, and it would prove to be a game-winner.

 

Setting Up Horvat’s First Goal

Bo Horvat has given Dorsett credit for being an important mentor, and the two spent some time together on the fourth line when Horvat was just breaking into the league. In fact, it was Dorsett who set-up Horvat’s first career goal, with a slick backhand pass into the slot.

 

Derek Vs. Goliath

Dorsett may not have won his fight against John Scott, but is there any moment that better epitomizes his courage than choosing to take on the 6’8” behemoth? At least Dorsett did better than Alex Bolduc did!

 

Taking On Deryk Engelland…Twice!

I don’t know if I’ve ever seen a player take two fighting majors in a single play, but Dorsett managed to turn the trick by battling the heavyweight Deryk Engelland twice. Engelland is a top-tier fighter, so for Dorsett to tussle with him not once, but twice, on the same play is an impressive feat. The fact he came back for Round Two to defend Dan Hamhuis is just vintage Dorsett.

 

Shutting Down McDavid

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Fans wondered how effective Derek Dorsett would be after returning from cervical fusion surgery in 2017, and they got their answer in the very first game. Dorsett was at his pesky best, employed by Travis Green to shutdown Connor McDavid. Not only was McDavid held off the scoresheet, he was noticeably frustrated at Dorsett’s efforts.

 

Shorthanded Snipe Against The Leafs

Take a look at all the effort that Dorsett puts into getting ahead of the Leaf defenders to create this shorthanded two-on-one. He then proceeds to snipe the puck top corner with perfect precision. Dorsett was a player who really “earned” a lot of his goals.

 

Dorsett Does His Best Alex Burrows Dragon-Slaying Impression

I love how similar this goal is to Alex Burrows’ famous dragon-slaying goal, which also came against the Blackhawks. It could be seen as symbolic for how Dorsett took over Burrows’ role as number one team troublestarter.

 

Slapping The Bass

This is probably Dorsett’s best fight as a Canuck in terms of sheer entertainment value. It’s a draw, but Dorsett certainly gives Cody Bass all he can handle via a truly ambidextrous assault. What teammate wouldn’t get pumped up witnessing that?

 

Taking On ALL The Bruins

Dorsett never hesitated to protect his fellow Canucks. In this scene, Dorsett immediately responds to a questionable hit on Bo Horvat by Zac Rinaldo, and then gets up from that and tries to fight another stray Bruins goon just for the hell of it. Dorsett’s righteous fury was a sight to behold.

 

Returning From Cervical Fusion To Continue Protecting His Teammates

Some openly wondered whether Derek Dorsett would ever fight again after his serious neck injury and subsequent surgery, but he quickly showed that he was still doing to do whatever is necessary to protect his teammates. When Mark Borowiecki took a big run at Alex Burmistrov, Dorsett was immediately on the scene to hand out some pugilistic justice.

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Thoughts on Reid Boucher

Boucher is an undersized, but very skilled offensive player. Dominant at the AHL level, and has had some small stints of sustained scoring at the NHL level.

Rattie may have made more sense, however, I will point out that Boucher has better stats at every level of play, thus far. Same draft year.

For those wondering why the Canucks didn’t just claim Boucher a day ago when he was also on waivers, at that point, New Jersey had first dibs as the former team that lost him on waivers. They made the claim, and then tried to immediately send him down. The fact they had to put him on waivers again means at least one other team, possibly the Canucks, also had put in a claim. Why they thought they could sneak him down, I’m really not sure. Perhaps they thought Rattie was enough of a distraction to slip Boucher by.

I believe the Canucks had higher waiver priority than Carolina, as they are tied in points, but Carolina has games in hand. Theoretically, the Canucks could have claimed Rattie. But this may have been a case where Benning made the safe play. You can’t claim two players on waivers without being prepared to actually take on both, and so perhaps Benning snagged Boucher thinking it was likely Rattie was gone before the Canucks’ priority spot. That didn’t end up being true, but at least they were certain to get someone.

Just my two cents! All speculation. Excited to see what Boucher can do.

Further Evidence For My Draft Proposal

When I posted my draft-fixing proposal around, the largest criticism of it is that it would hurt the weakest teams and reward teams that had a poor start. The notion seemed to be that strong teams could still be low in the standings by the end of January, or February, or whenever the draft was decided in my proposal.

I’ve done some further research and found that this is not the case, especially if only the top eight selections are decided mid-way through the season.

Here are the NHL standings at the end of January and February (the trade deadline) from this past season:

http://dropyourgloves.com/Games/AnyDateStandings.aspx?League=1&Date=2016-01-31

http://dropyourgloves.com/Games/AnyDateStandings.aspx?League=1&Date=2016-02-29

As you can see, even strong teams that had poor starts like the Anaheim Ducks have climbed the standings by this point in the season. The weakest teams are already at the bottom of the standings, and many had been all season.

If you look at other seasons, this is true for them, as well. In fact, the only two playoff teams who would have been even close to having their draft pick selected at the trade deadline (under my proposal) were the Flyers and the Wild, two teams who made late charges to make the playoffs.

The real difference under my proposal would have been the avoidance of a post-deadline race to the bottom of the standings. Teams like Vancouver and Arizona would have had no incentive to perform their post-February nosedives. Food for thought.