Thursday, August 31, 2006
Ode to Willie Mitchell
The spendthrift Wild traded Willie Mitchell at the trading deadline last season when it was clear that they weren't going to be able to sign him in the off-season. After the season he signed a contract with the Canucks and now appears ready to anchor their defense. Check out Canuck's Blog for a nice post about Willie.
Anyhow, I still contend the Wid made a huge mistake in not keeping him around. He was the anchor of our PK unit and rarely made a mistake. Sure, he never scored, and sure, he tends to shy away from delivering the big hit, but you could always count on Willie to break up a 2 on 1 or block a shot from the point.
Since the trade, the Wild has opened up the checkbook and spent some cash on some notable defensemen including Kim Johnsson and Keith Carney. Johnsson is expected to anchor the power play and brings them a player who can bring the puck up the ice. Look up "grizzled veteran" in the dictionary and you'll see a picture of Keith Carney. He'll play 23 minutes a game and fit in nicely. Neither are the tough, stay at home defenseman that Willie was, but we'll see how it goes. I only know it'll be a little harder to muster up my usual Canuck hatred. Thank heaven Matt Cooke is still a Canuck, at least for now.