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The Official Site of the Vancouver Canucks

Press Round-Up: DEC.04.07

by Staff Writer / Vancouver Canucks
Brown happy to be home
Ben Kuzma said Mike Brown’s first NHL goal is changing his life as he returns home with a puck in his pocket.

“Since being recalled from the Manitoba Moose on Nov. 19, the 22-year-old rookie has fought twice in three games and potted his first goal,” said Kuzma.

"It's amazing to be playing in the league now against guys I grew up watching and idolizing," said the 6-foot, 210-pound Brown. "It's a great accomplishment to be here."

“Instead of riding buses on a seven-game sojourn the Moose is enduring through the midwest, he's flying on charters, dining in style and making it harder for coach Alain Vigneault to remove him from the Canucks lineup,” Kuzma said.

“Brown has always been able to skate fast. Combined with his edge, it prompted the Canucks to select him in the fourth round of the 2004 draft.”

“Brown becomes a restricted free agent July 1. Alex Burrows and Rick Rypien play similar roles,” said Kuzma.

“Burrows has another year left on his deal, while Rypien will be a restricted free agent next summer.”

"Guys like that are a big inspiration for me because they started out the same way," said Brown. "It's a crucial year for me and I'm just trying to play my best and hope the organization likes what it sees. I'm not going to mess around. I'm going to prove that I should be here."
Linden looking like square peg in a round hole
Ben Kuzma said that Trevor Linden is the talk of hockey town as he has been a healthy scratch two, maybe three, times in a row.

“In response, the coach stayed the course Monday. He said it's a matter of performance and a franchise priority to assess prospects -- such as rookie winger Mike Brown -- rather than personal preference that decides whether the 37-year-old forward plays,” said Kuzma.

“Vigneault wouldn't say if Linden will play in Chicago Wednesday or Thursday in Nashville, but conceded he'll be in one of those games.”

"Part of the reason is Trevor is getting older and part of it is our mandate to see where some of these kids can be with a little more ice time," said Vigneault. "He might have a couple of more years in front of him or this might be his last one, I don't know."

“Linden has three points in 18 games and is averaging 11:06 of ice time. Last season he had 25 points in 80 games and five of his 12 power-play goals came with ample time alongside Daniel and Henrik Sedin,” Kuzma said.

“Linden led all Canuck forwards with seven playoff points in a dozen games and averaged 12:20 of ice time.”

"We know what Trevor can bring and he might not totally agree with this, but we feel he's better when he's fresh," said the coach.

"With the way everything is working out, he seems to be the guy that we can slide in and slide out. He's working hard and there for all the meetings. Obviously, I don't expect him to be all perky because he's not dressing every night. We addressed this in the summer and he was comfortable with it."

"It's Mo's group that we're having a little dilemma with. And that's where we are. Where does Trevor fit in? If we want to be an in-your-face type team on the fourth line, Trevor doesn't fit there."
Vigneault wants to see Mo Cooke-ing
Brad Ziemer said that Coach Alain Vigneault isn’t too happy with his third line’s performance and contribution from Morrison and Cooke.

"It's Mo's group we're having a little dilemma with right now," Vigneault said Monday. "There's not a lot of miscues defensively, but there were some [Sunday] with that line.

"I've talked to both of them about it. They love playing with one another. Mo seems to think there's some good chemistry there, but for some reason we're not getting much five-on-five out of those guys."

“Vigneault said he's satisfied with the play of Alex Burrows, the third member of the line,” said Ziemer.

“Morrison, after a positive start to the season, has dried up offensively. He has scored once in the last 11 games, while Cooke has one goal in his last 14 games.”
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