One half of Vancouver’s wonder twins broke a nice barrier Tuesday night, but as this season has proven, the Sedins still have a tough time garnering respect around the league.
The good people of Vancouver may have championed some questionable heroes in the past (Todd Bertuzzi, Swollen Members, etc.), but you can’t knock their love for the Sedin twins. With Henrik Sedin notching career point No. 900 and beyond Tuesday night in a loss to San Jose, it is once again time to ponder when the rest of the hockey world will catch up.
To wit, we’ve already had another incident this year of fellow NHLPA members questioning the nature of the brothers’ relationship with one another in a bro-ey, middle-school way. Other antagonists over the years include David Bolland and, more so on the ice, Brad Marchand, who almost had an encore of his face-punching Stanley Cup routine when the Canucks visited Boston last week.
The Bruins faithful didn’t show the same vitriol towards the Sedins on that night, but circumstances and time dictated that.
“It was way bigger the year after when we came back,” Henrik said. “Right now we’re both fighting for a playoff spot and that’s our focus.”
And while Marchand didn’t stoke any fires in the press – he told me the Sedins were good players, but that the B’s had to prepare like it was any other game – the Sedins’ latest linemate didn’t mind backing up his boys when it came to addressing all the comments made about them.
“Everyone who knows the Sedins know they’re probably the most professional athletes on and off the ice,” said Zack Kassian. “They work extremely hard and they’re extremely good people. All those other players really don’t know what they’re talking about.”
But let’s talk about something real: Henrik’s 900-plus points. That’s a great mark in a career that isn’t over yet and 1,000 points should not be difficult to achieve. Daniel is a bit behind his kin, playing fewer games due to injury, but hitting 1,000 points is certainly a possibility for him too (he’s at 861 right now; both players are 34 years old).
Both brothers have Art Ross trophies, both have been year-end All-Star selections and Henrik has a Hart Trophy. Plus they led Vancouver to the Cup final in 2011, falling to the Bruins in seven games. Are they Hall of Famers? I wouldn’t be surprised. Not only do you have the points and the accolades, but also the uniqueness of their on-ice chemistry lending to their growing legacy. The NHL has never had brothers produce such elite numbers in equal amounts, let alone twins who seem to operate on a Tomax and Xamot level of shared intuition.
The only person who seems to know how to shut them down offensively is John Tortorella, and he did so while coaching in Vancouver.
There are few sure things in the Western Conference right now, but the Canucks are in a playoff position, sitting second in the Pacific Division. Once again the Sedins are leading the team in points and possession and if they can steer the squad back to the playoffs, it will be one more checkmark on an impressive resume – with more to come.