Last summer the Vancouver Canucks traded power-forward Todd Bertuzzi to the Florida Panthers in exchange for Roberto Luongo. The trade also include several other parts including Bryan Allen and Alex Auld going to Florida and Lukas Krajicek coming to Vancouver. When all was said and done the trade appears to be a steal for the Canucks as Roberto Luongo had an MVP worthy season while Todd Bertuzzi suffered through back surgery and upon his return was traded to the Detroit Red Wings for the always important 'future considerations'.
Under a cloud of critism over the course of the past few seasons the hulking winger could not have found a more perfect home in Detroit. The Red Wings were battling the Predators for first in the Western Conference. An accomplishment that Todd Bertuzzi really had nothing to do with. Yes, this is 'Hockeytown' USA but with most of the job completed without his assistance, Todd could come into the line-up and simply play hockey.
In Vancouver, Todd was everything. Todd was the go to guy, Todd was the hero in victory and the goat in defeat. There were times where the critics were right but there were also times where you would have to shake your head and wonder what would it take for these people to lay-off.
In Detroit, Todd will still get the critic's commenting about his lack of desire etc. That is just Todd's make-up, he is a terrible interview and yes he does lack some sense of his defensive responsibilities on the ice. You get what you get from Todd, he is either your goat or your hero and in Detroit there is enough of a supporting cast that he can get lost in the shuffle of blame. Names like Datsyuk, Zetterberg, Holmstrom, and Lidstrom are the key players in Detroit and the blame will eventually fall on their feet when all is said and done.
We all remember the dreadful evening of March 8, 2004 and I for one hate to reiterate the evening. I remember watching the game on television (wearing my #44 jersey) wondering what the hell was he thinking. The fallout of the evening was devastating to everyone that is involved with hockey and as we all know, Steve Moore eventually filed a lawsuit claiming damages be paid by Todd Bertuzzi.
Upon the end of the Canucks 2007 Stanley Cup playoff run, I was going to focus on blogging about the Memorial Cup, but this topic is too good to ignore. The Detroit Red Wings currently have a three games to two lead over the San Jose Sharks. If the Red Wings overcome the lost of Matheiu Schinder and enter the NHL's final four that will mark the furthest Todd Bertuzzi had ever gone in the Stanley Cup Playoffs. And if, just if, Todd Bertuzzi is on a Stanley Cup winning team how does it affect the aformentioned lawsuit? Does it affect it at all? Does is anger Steve Moore? Imagine the look on Mr. Moores face when he sees Todd Bertuzzi on national television with the Stanley Cup over his head.