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Why didn't Messier work out for the Canucks?

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Old
02-06-2013, 01:30 PM
  #1
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Why didn't Messier work out for the Canucks?

He was supposed to be our saviour and he flopped, what happened?

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02-06-2013, 01:48 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Natureboy1235 View Post
He was supposed to be our saviour and he flopped, what happened?
Mike Keenan happened.

/Thread

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02-06-2013, 02:06 PM
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TheDevilMadeMe
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He was old. Rumor has it that he was already showing signs of losing it in 1996-97, which is why the Rangers kept Gretzky over Messier after that season.

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02-06-2013, 02:07 PM
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He came in demanding all sorts of ridiculous things. He ripped the C right off of Linden's jersey through Keenan, he butted heads with a number of other veteran players, grossly under-performed for his salary/expectations, demanded Wayne Maki's unofficially retired #11 without first asking Maki's family (Maki died of brain cancer while playing), he was an overall -37 and cared more about making Lays commercials than getting wins.

**** Mark Messier.

Incoming legions of Oilers/Rangers fans to dispute these points.

Quote:
Originally Posted by TheDevilMadeMe View Post
He was old. Rumor has it that he was already showing signs of losing it in 1996-97, which is why the Rangers kept Gretzky over Messier after that season.
Doesn't explain why he mysteriously put up better numbers the season he returned than in any season as a Canuck, despite being older.

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02-06-2013, 02:16 PM
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Originally Posted by SDK View Post
He came in demanding all sorts of ridiculous things. He ripped the C right off of Linden's jersey through Keenan, he butted heads with a number of other veteran players, grossly under-performed for his salary/expectations, demanded Wayne Maki's unofficially retired #11 without first asking Maki's family (Maki died of brain cancer while playing), he was an overall -37 and cared more about making Lays commercials than getting wins.

**** Mark Messier.

Incoming legions of Oilers/Rangers fans to dispute these points.



Doesn't explain why he mysteriously put up better numbers the season he returned than in any season as a Canuck, despite being older.
lol...pretty much sums it up. there's you answer kid. I can't imagine any vancouver fan being a messier supporter.

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02-06-2013, 02:30 PM
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No heart. Only signed for the $.

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02-06-2013, 02:41 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SDK View Post
Incoming legions of Oilers/Rangers fans to dispute these points.
This will generally happen when you post a well-worn internet conspiracy theory with no basis in fact or evidence and that has, in fact, been debunked on this site alone about a 1000 times.

But please. Don't let that stop you from responding with the good ol, 'whatver, man, you don't know what itwas like to be a Vancouver fan then'

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02-06-2013, 02:42 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SDK View Post
He came in demanding all sorts of ridiculous things. He ripped the C right off of Linden's jersey through Keenan, he butted heads with a number of other veteran players, grossly under-performed for his salary/expectations, demanded Wayne Maki's unofficially retired #11 without first asking Maki's family (Maki died of brain cancer while playing), he was an overall -37 and cared more about making Lays commercials than getting wins.

**** Mark Messier.

Incoming legions of Oilers/Rangers fans to dispute these points.


Doesn't explain why he mysteriously put up better numbers the season he returned than in any season as a Canuck, despite being older.
Have you ever considered that people might be disputing these points because several of them are factually incorrect?


1. Mike Keenan did not facilitate Mark Messier taking the captaincy from Trevor Linden. Keenan had yet to join the Vancouver Canucks when Linden voluntarily gave up the captaincy to Messier.

Quote:
Originally Posted by The Vancouver Sun, December 2008
Linden claimed the decision to hand over the 'C' was his and his alone. "I didn't know what I was going to do and I didn't want to make a quick decision," Linden explained. "I wanted to see how it played out. You know, the day I was driving from Whistler to go to the [Messier signing] announcement I turned on the radio in my car and the first thing I heard was 'would Messier be captain?'

"I was monitoring the situation and was waiting to see what felt right. And it just felt right. Now I'll be apprenticing under one of the best leaders in professional sport." Long-time Canuck GM Pat Quinn nodded his approval. "Let's face it, we acquired a player who has an aura of leadership about him," Quinn said of Messier. "Trevor felt it would be better to defer the captaincy to a person of Mark's presence and accomplishments."
2. Beverly Maki gave Mark Messier permission to wear #11. The conflict was with Pat Quinn not offering to take the number out of circulation at the end of Messier's contract.

Quote:
Originally Posted by The Vancouver Sun, October 1997
"They just don't want to accept that the number was retired," said Beverly Maki, who lives in North Vancouver with daughter Stephanie, 26, and son Wayne Jr., 25. "We've offered to let Mark wear it for the three years he plays here and then we want them to retire the number again. All I've been asking for is some acknowledgement. If something could happen, it would be great."

In her most recent conversation with Quinn one week ago, Beverly Maki said she was told the Canucks "wouldn't do anything because the number was never retired."
3. Mark Messier was as good of a scorer in 1998-99 and 1999-2000 with the Canucks as he was in 2000-01 with the Rangers. The difference is that he was injured during those two seasons in Vancouver. As for 1997-98, he had a really bad start in October under Tom Renney, then put up 40 points over the next 41 games leading up to the Olympics. The team finished 10th among all teams in scoring, but ultimately missed the playoffs because of McLean's .879 and Burke's .876.

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02-06-2013, 02:46 PM
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Few things tick me off more than Ranger fans who feel the need to chime in on Messier/Vancouver discussions when they have absolutely no idea what actually happened.

Messier's time in Vancouver was an utter disgrace and the only person to blame for it was Mark Messier.

I've never seen either a) a more selfish, self-serving performance from a professional athlete, or b) a lazier on-ice effort from a professional athlete.

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02-06-2013, 02:50 PM
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Originally Posted by MS View Post
Few things tick me off more than Ranger fans who feel the need to chime in on Messier/Vancouver discussions when they have absolutely no idea what actually happened.
Oh, if only someone had newspaper citations with quotes from Trevor Linden and Wayne Maki's widow that detailed the situation. Oh, wait...

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02-06-2013, 02:52 PM
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how is 60 points in 78 games for a guy whos in his late 30s a bad thing it vancouver fault for thinking he could be a top line guy at that point in his carrer

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02-06-2013, 03:10 PM
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Originally Posted by eddytheeagle20 View Post
how is 60 points in 78 games for a guy whos in his late 30s a bad thing it vancouver fault for thinking he could be a top line guy at that point in his carrer
Pat Quinn thought that a team that had put up progressively fewer points each season (and hadn't been above .500 since 1994) was one piece away from the Stanley Cup in 1998. The Vancouver Canucks needed to rebuild, and they did, with two pieces of the West Coast Express coming over in deals for Linden and Mogilny (who in 1997 had his first sub-point-per-game season since his rookie year). And let's be honest, Kirk McLean for Sean Burke should have worked, given the level at which Burke would perform after leaving Vancouver.

I mean, the Detroit Red Wings paid Steve Yzerman $8.5 million to play 16 games and put up 8 points, and 1 assist in a four-game playoff sweep at the end of his career. Sometimes guys get overpaid.

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02-06-2013, 03:10 PM
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Originally Posted by eddytheeagle20 View Post
how is 60 points in 78 games for a guy whos in his late 30s a bad thing it vancouver fault for thinking he could be a top line guy at that point in his carrer
My take is that Messier himself thought he was still a superstar, and he acted as such. All the "my way or the highway" stuff that Vancouver fans complain about is exactly what Messier did in New York, and it worked beautifully there. My opinion is that by the time Messier got to Vancouver, his skills were eroding, but by that point his ego had been so built up, he refused to realize it, and he no longer had the skills to back up his demands.

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02-06-2013, 03:42 PM
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Originally Posted by quoipourquoi View Post
Oh, if only someone had newspaper citations with quotes from Trevor Linden and Wayne Maki's widow that detailed the situation. Oh, wait...
The Maki situation is one that casual fans fixate on and are occasionally slightly mis-informed on, but was in reality one of the least significant things that happened. It's not even one of the things I mention when talking about Messier, although even going through the process to take a dead guy's unofficially retired number is sketchy enough and a bad look for a new player.

None of the other stuff - throwing his head coach under the bus after 10 games, being buddy-buddy with the owner and trying to play GM, intentionally dividing the dressing room, the endless bizarre behaviour and strange quotes, the embarassing on-ice effort, and so on, has been debunked. Even remotely.

Unless you lived through it (and I was a season ticket holder at the time) you have absolutely no idea how strange the whole Messier situation was and how bizarre his behaviour was. Especially the 1997-98 season which was a circus from start to finish.

After Burke arrived in 1998, his behaviour was reigned in. All we had to deal with was his embarassing on-ice performance and total lack of try or backchecking.

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02-06-2013, 03:44 PM
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Originally Posted by TheDevilMadeMe View Post
My take is that Messier himself thought he was still a superstar, and he acted as such. All the "my way or the highway" stuff that Vancouver fans complain about is exactly what Messier did in New York, and it worked beautifully there. My opinion is that by the time Messier got to Vancouver, his skills were eroding, but by that point his ego had been so built up, he refused to realize it, and he no longer had the skills to back up his demands.
Pretty much this. You'll find newspaper articles and quotes the condemn or exonerate Messier (though keep in mind the date of the article as you rarely get the full story as it's happening, players/people will say stuff for PR reasons or to not rock the boat) and can argue those back and forth. But at the end of the day what it comes down to is Vancouver gave him the big bucks to bring in a legendary player, a bit old but still coming off 109 and 97 PPG seasons, and received a poor imitation in return. Saying it's not Messier's fault Quinn offered such a big contract is kind of meaningless because while every fanbase rips on players that don't perform to their contracts. And sorry but you don't give a guy 21 million over three years plus a cut of any increased franchise value to provide 'leadership qualities'. Pat Quinn may have given the offer and deserves to be ripped on for that, but at the end of the day that money still comes from the ticket buying fanbase.

Also what really inflames things is that while Messier was a charlatan for Vancouver he's revered as a saint by our rival fanbase in Edmonton.

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02-06-2013, 04:35 PM
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Originally Posted by RandV View Post
Pretty much this. You'll find newspaper articles and quotes the condemn or exonerate Messier (though keep in mind the date of the article as you rarely get the full story as it's happening, players/people will say stuff for PR reasons or to not rock the boat) and can argue those back and forth. But at the end of the day what it comes down to is Vancouver gave him the big bucks to bring in a legendary player, a bit old but still coming off 109 and 97 PPG seasons, and received a poor imitation in return. Saying it's not Messier's fault Quinn offered such a big contract is kind of meaningless because while every fanbase rips on players that don't perform to their contracts. And sorry but you don't give a guy 21 million over three years plus a cut of any increased franchise value to provide 'leadership qualities'. Pat Quinn may have given the offer and deserves to be ripped on for that, but at the end of the day that money still comes from the ticket buying fanbase.

Also what really inflames things is that while Messier was a charlatan for Vancouver he's revered as a saint by our rival fanbase in Edmonton.
hard to pin that on quinn. there was a new owner looking to make a splash (john mccaw). what's quinn going to do, say "this is stupid, i quit"?

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02-06-2013, 05:09 PM
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It was pointed out already, but he was getting old. I also remember thinking at the time that Vancouver just didn't seem to be a team on the rise. In fact, it was the opposite. They were clearly a team in decline. Bure had not had a great season since 1994 and pretty much played for himself in 1997-'98. It was just a weird place for him to go, I thought, even at that time. He was a guy you just as well assumed was going to retire as a NYR without any interruptions. I think by then it was also a long time since 1994. Messier was starting to look his age a little bit more and less of a "Messiah".

I remember the years post 1997 and there was never a time when I thought Messier was anything but a shell of his former self. It happens. You get old and he had played a ton of hockey at that time. It happened to Paul Coffey too but he had the knowledge to get out earlier than Mess when he was no longer an impact.

I also blame the media attention and the hype. Vancouver was NOT going to win a Cup and wasn't even close.

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02-06-2013, 05:16 PM
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Originally Posted by Natureboy1235 View Post
Why didn't Messier work out for the Canucks?

He was supposed to be our saviour and he flopped, what happened?
Maybe because the Canucks were a losing team before Messier got there and a losing team after he got there. See Casey Stengel's quote about chicken salad.

PS. I see Big Phil beat me to it regarding the Canucks weakness at the time.


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02-06-2013, 05:24 PM
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Originally Posted by SDK View Post
He came in demanding all sorts of ridiculous things. He ripped the C right off of Linden's jersey through Keenan, he butted heads with a number of other veteran players, grossly under-performed for his salary/expectations, demanded Wayne Maki's unofficially retired #11 without first asking Maki's family (Maki died of brain cancer while playing), he was an overall -37 and cared more about making Lays commercials than getting wins.

**** Mark Messier.

Incoming legions of Oilers/Rangers fans to dispute these points.

.
Sucked for you not for us. Got nothing to argue here with you guys haha

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02-06-2013, 05:25 PM
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Mark Messier was not a motivated player in his time with Vancouver. He often took short shifts, was not a physical player, and stopped shooting altogether. Everything he was renowned for throughout his career seemed to disappear when he suited up in a Canucks sweater.

His shot totals dropped incredibly as soon as he arrived in Vancouver, and while his shooting percentage remained similar to when he was a Ranger, his lack of shots ultimately resulted in fewer goals. His 13 goals in the 1998-99 season, for example, were the result of only taking 97 shots that year. The year prior to joining Vancouver, he scored 36 goals on 277 shots; he averaged 200+ shots every season with the Rangers.

In various games I've looked back on, I've noticed such commentators as John Davidson and Mickey Redmond comment on how Messier simply did not look like the same player he had been in New York. He shied away from physicality, did not commit himself to solid defense, and made terrible plays. Some attributed it to injuries in the first month of his tenure with Vancouver, but his play did not improve at all during the course of those three years. He was slow, took short shifts, and could very well have been labelled a "lazy" player. It was a surprise and a disappointment to Canucks fans, as many had hoped he would finally be the top line center the team had been searching for. Eventually, Brian Burke had to buy out Messier's contract.

He just was not the same player for some reason. It was disappointing, considering he had played well as a Ranger and Canucks fans knew what sort of impact he could make. Even with Keenan as coach, Messier seemed disinterested much of the time. Markus Naslund gives him credit for being a mentor and being a leader in the dressing room. Unfortunately, he did not lead the team on the ice or even show any semblance of his former self. At that point, he became solely an off-ice leader.

It's not even the appointment of Messier as captain that irks me. The Linden trade paid dividends for the Canucks and is a deal I would gladly do a second time. It's simply his poor play and lack of effort, making him a disastrous free agent signing for the Canucks. There are stories that the Canucks had reached out to Wayne Gretzky that off-season, but Pat Quinn's middle-of-the-night ultimatum completely ruined the potential of signing him. Messier became the consolation prize, and was the highest-paid player on the team during his tenure in Vancouver. His reputation in Vancouver would have been fine had he performed, but he played horribly for the team. The controversy surrounding #11 and the captaincy gave fans even more reason to despise him, but his play really stood out negatively.


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02-06-2013, 11:29 PM
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The Canucks stunk before he got there. They were a horribly assembled team. A huge gap between the up-and-coming young stars and the veterans.

Linden and Maclean were disasters that season. Canucks fan try to pin the sharp decline in Linden's production, but there were signs the previous season. He couldnt bury the puck and was looking to pass more, probably because of his shoulder injury. That trade probably saved the franchise

IMO, injuries, lack of depth and Maclean sucking were the reasons.

But in a way, the horrid 1998 season allowed some key younge players to get more ice time and make the Canucks an elite team a few seasons later.

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02-07-2013, 12:17 AM
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For me, the moment that most reflected the decline of Messier occurred during the Eastern Conference finals a few months before he signed with the Nucks. I think it was game 3, Rangers had an empty net, Messier was about to get the puck, Lindros gave Mess a little hook and then blew past him and scored.

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02-07-2013, 12:24 AM
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Originally Posted by Leafsdude7 View Post
Mike Keenan happened.
Because Kennan/Messier is a combination that has never worked in the past. Ever. Not once. Not for Canada Cup wins or Stanley Cup wins.

Quote:
Originally Posted by quoipourquoi View Post
I mean, the Detroit Red Wings paid Steve Yzerman $8.5 million to play 16 games and put up 8 points, and 1 assist in a four-game playoff sweep at the end of his career. Sometimes guys get overpaid.
That season Yzerman was also on the third and year of a deal he signed after being top-ten in scoring and winning the Selke and being named to the first all-star team. The previous two seasons he had put up 52 in 54 and 48 in 52. He was just barely shy of PPG over the deal, he just couldn't stay healthy because his knee HAD NO CARTILAGE. Didn't stop him from going 24 for 24 in the 2002 playoffs. Nobody cares what his regular season production is at that point if he's going to have that playoff run. Ken Holland, Scotty Bowman, and Mike Ilitch don't care if he puts up 8 points in 16 games in the regular season if he does 24 in 24 in the playoffs.

That was Messier's big problem in Vancouver. He was brought out west with one single goal: get the team to the playoffs. He couldn't accomplish it. The season after he left it happened. When Messier arrived he was coming to a team that was just slightly below average the previous season; 35-40-7. He led them to a 25-43-14 year and the 30-29-15 record in 99-00 (a winning record, barely!) was the best he could lead them to.

Removing Messier and giving those ~20 minutes to someone else helped the team more than he could.

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02-07-2013, 06:51 AM
  #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GWOW View Post
Linden and Maclean were disasters that season. Canucks fan try to pin the sharp decline in Linden's production, but there were signs the previous season. He couldnt bury the puck and was looking to pass more, probably because of his shoulder injury. That trade probably saved the franchise

IMO, injuries, lack of depth and Maclean sucking were the reasons.
Kirk McLean and Trevor Linden were both traded early in Messier's first season.

Quote:
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Because Kennan/Messier is a combination that has never worked in the past. Ever. Not once. Not for Canada Cup wins or Stanley Cup wins.
I was talking more generally about the Canucks than about Keenan/Messier. Keenan was a large part in the shake up of the Canucks in the late 90s, a shake up that saw most of the core group and leaders go and undeveloped youngsters come in. The fact that Messier was surrounded by few solid veterans probably contributed to both his and the teams lack of success.

That said, the fact that the pairing of Keenan/Messier worked before doesn't mean Keenan wasn't directly responsible for it not working again.

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02-07-2013, 08:45 AM
  #25
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Originally Posted by SDK View Post
He came in demanding all sorts of ridiculous things. He ripped the C right off of Linden's jersey through Keenan, he butted heads with a number of other veteran players, grossly under-performed for his salary/expectations, demanded Wayne Maki's unofficially retired #11 without first asking Maki's family (Maki died of brain cancer while playing), he was an overall -37 and cared more about making Lays commercials than getting wins.

**** Mark Messier.

Incoming legions of Oilers/Rangers fans to dispute these points.



Doesn't explain why he mysteriously put up better numbers the season he returned than in any season as a Canuck, despite being older.
This is about it, for some reason the Moose was more concerned about being the man and his ego got in the way of making the team better.

It was a move I really hated at the time and it was a long 3 years.

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