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During last summers long off-season the Vancouver Canucks GM Dave Nonis made two signing that may fans have questioned. The first was the signing of defenseman Willie Mitchell to a 4 yr./$3.5 million deal and the second was Trevor Linden to a 1 yr./$600,000 deal. Fans and media alike have questioned these moves all season long and in some instances the critics have made solid arguements.

Tonight I had the pleasure of watching the Canucks take game four from the Stars and with that a 3 - 1 series lead, the reason. Shortly, after the Canucks captain Markus Naslund made a costly turn over in his own zone and the Stars buried the ensuing shot, Trevor Linden stepped on to the ice for an outstanding shift. Linden was throwing his weight around, never giving up on the puck and creating a turnover. The puck ended up on Bryan Smolinski stick who turned a riffled a shot on goal, the rebound, was there for Linden to take. Linden had a shift that showed me the reason for the contract, in fact, he showed me a reason for next seasons contract.

In the dying moments of the game, Willie Mitchell proved to me why he is worth his $3.5 million per. Stars sniper Mike Riberio (who if you ask me is as flakey as they come) puts a puck on net that some how manages to sneak through Luongo's pads and trickle towards the goal line. As the puck is making it last push, Mitchell slides in and knocks the puck away from the the goal line. Outstanding!

Not to overshadow yet another solid performance from Robert Luongo but these two players may have silenced the critics this evening.
Filed Under:   Canucks   Luongo   Stars   Eklund   Stanley Cup  
April 17, 2007 11:29 PM ET | Delete
Mitchell has always been a beauty, I think too many fans just think because he doesn't put up offense that he can't possibly be worth that much money. Not saying you are myopic in this way, just saying many have been. Go Canucks Go!
April 18, 2007 12:28 AM ET | Delete
Linden was a monster for much of tonight! Good forecheck, lots of hits and no quit. Sign him up for another one, Nonis!
April 18, 2007 11:13 AM ET | Delete
Lindros, Ribeiro, Stephan, Nagy... flakey, flakey, flakey, and flakey.Dallas is not a good hockey club. 15 wins against Phoenix and LA is the only reason they're even in the playoffs. With both those teams bound to get better next year (LA was already looking great at the end of the season and Phoenix is doing a major overhaul), Dallas won't even be in the playoffs next year.
April 18, 2007 12:20 PM ET | Delete
I have to say that i wasn't too happy with the Linden signing at the beginning of the season, but he has showed he still has some gas left. And his leadership.. i just think that that is so important for our younger guys... that by itself is reason enough to keep signing him. Who else are we going to find as a third line right-handed shot to play on the powerplay who is as 'Vancouver Canucks' as Trev? Also, i never questioned the Mitchell signing. I thought it was our second best move of the off-season, especially after watching him play against us for Dallas and Minny.
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