Darcy Hordichuk was brought to the Canucks for one reason and one reason only. To be a brute, to crush not just hit, and to chuck knuckles raining fists of fury. He was brought on to either to spark some energy via taking down, or at least taking on the other team’s heavyweight. He was brought on as our heavyweight and was expected to use his grit as retribution for a bad hit, a yapping Avery-type character, or dirty play.
Hordichuk is not on this team for his speed or his offense. His offense is a notch above Shane O’Brien. Actually, half a notch. Gillis said he brought him onto the team because he was a tough guy and a heavy weight, but also because he was not one dimensional. He could skate, had some hands, and could also use those hands to pummel opponents. I remember the Hordichuk that played for the Predators and Panthers. That’s the Hordichuk that I thought this team was landing. Unfortunately we’ve seen the complete opposite of what we expected.
Since coming to the Canucks his scraps have been Jeff Cowan-esque at best. This isn’t hug fest 2010. Last night his attempted fight further put things in perspective. Hell, even Shane O’Brien stood his ground against Chipchurra and put up a valiant effort. I haven’t seen him decimate someone the way he used to when he was in Florida. This season has put things into an even better perspective because Hordichuk’s orders are being covered by Rypien and Glass who will take on anything with two fists that looks at them the wrong way. Rypien doesn’t care how big a guy is he’ll chuck knuckles. When you have a guy like Rypien taking on the heavy weights, Glass taking on anyone else, and even Kesler trying to pick fights here and there, there is no need for Hordichuk taking up bench space. He’s here to fight, and since he’s not fighting all he’s doing is floating. This team has checkers and 4th liners a dime a dozen and the team would get more from a Mario Bliznak on the 4th line than they’re getting from Hordichuk.
He’s a role player, and his role is supposed to be an enforcer. If he’s not enforcing we don’t need him. He’s not fighting, he’s not hitting, and we don’t need a floater. The Canucks can use his spot for a number of players that would bring more to the game than he is bringing right now. The Canucks enforcer is getting shown up by two kids that can fight and provide an offensive aspect to their game. He’s gone from the multi-dimensional player Gillis saw he was, to playing dimensionless hockey. Remind me why he wasted his summer training with Chuck Liddell?