Here we are smack dab in the middle of the Holiday Season. I mean we know what you're all wishing for right? Obviously it's Glass Bangers under your tree (that can be easily taken care of with a few quick clicks), but I thought it would be fun to guess what certain NHL teams and perhaps NHL players or coaches might be wishing for this year. So without further adieu, let the wishes commence.
The Vancouver Canucks
Oh the Canucks, loved by many and for some reason hated by many more (or so it seems). Really the Canucks have a decent enough team. Sure some of their stars are getting a little long in the tooth and yes they have had their struggles with management, but they've found a way to stay in the hunt the past few years.
Well if they want to this year, I would guess they are going to be wishing for third periods to be taken out of the game. I mean that's doable right? Just taking out one whole period, 40 minutes is plenty enough. The Canucks have seemed to make a habit this year of giving up leads in the 3rd period, sometimes even big leads. Also their OT record stands at 0-7 as I write this....that's right with the new 3 on 3 OT, the Canucks still haven't figured it out even with the Sedin twins who many thought would benefit from the new OT rule.
If Santa can't help them out, it's time for Willie and the coaching crew to do something as they head into 2016. They're lucky to not be too far out in spite of their late game troubles, so just imagine where they'd be if they could hang onto a lead or at the least get a couple OT wins.
What could one of the most infamous and recognizable coaches in the NHL be possibly wishing to find under his tree this year? Perhaps a little Tampa Bay magic?
Tortorella led the Lightning to their only Stanley Cup Championship in 2004. In just three years he took Tampa from cellar dwellers in the South East Division to a 106 point team, which was also good enough for the second best record in the league that season.
After some controversy a few seasons later, Tampa Bay fired him and from there Tortorella went to the New York Rangers. Even though he did guide the Rangers to only their third 50 win season in 2011-12, he was fired a couple of early playoff exits later and things didn't get much better with his next stop in Vancouver. He was fired after failing to make the playoffs in his one season with the Canucks.
This season though, Tortorella found new life in Columbus with the Blue Jackets. After staring the season 0-8, the Blue Jackets called upon Tortorella to jump in and stop the bleeding and although they are still in a decent sized whole, things are looking a little better. For one thing, they are winning games now and they are actually 6-4-0 in their last 10 games which is night and day compared to how they started. Sometimes it's all about the right guy with the right team and you can bet John Tortorella's wish this holiday season is that he finds the same success in Ohio that he did in Florida.
The Montreal Canadiens
The Habs are good on paper and they are good on the ice as well. They came out this season with guns blazing and at the time that I am writing this they have a commanding 11 point lead in the Atlantic Division, as well as a two point league lead over the Dallas Stars.
Kicking butt and taking names isn't new for Montreal though. Over the last several seasons, they have for the most part looked very good. They have one of the best goaltenders in the game, as well as Norris Trophy winner on defense and a pretty solid team in general. One thing has eluded them though for the past few decades and that is a Stanley Cup Championship. There is little doubt that an inspiring playoff run come Spring of 2016 is what they are wishing for.
They have all the tools in place to do so, now let's see if that wish will come true.
Stay tuned next week for more holiday wishes!