It may be hard to believe, but while the Hawks still sport Toews, Kane, Keith, and Seabrook from battles with Vancouver past, only Alex Edler stands for Vancouver from what used to be. They’ve all gone elsewhere or retreated to the garbage dumps from which they hatched. Kesler, Burrows, Luongo, The Children Of The Corn, Hansen, and more. Only Edler is left in the rubble where once stood…well, honestly, it was just bigger, uglier rubble. It never really amounted to much.
Edler contributed to the ire and bile of the fable, he wasn’t merely a bystander. There wasn’t any hit that Edler couldn’t leap into with his elbows floating up like water-wings, and then claim to be the aggrieved. There isn’t anything Duncan Keith has done to a Canuck that Edler didn’t attempt to a Hawk first. Keith was just better at it and more thorough. There was a reason we remarked, “When Eds The Swede gets here, his elbows are going to jump for joy!”
Edler’s career has gone kind of the way of the Canucks since then. It hasn’t helped that he’s made of stickum and snot, as he hasn’t played more than 75 games in a season in seven years. While there was a time, in the midst of all of the mishegas, that he looked like he might become a dynamic puck-mover, he stalled out with the rest of the organization and hasn’t bested 40 points since 2012.
And much like they did with pretty much everyone else from their “glory” days, they missed the window to trade Edler and get something tangible for him. He’s hurt again, on IR after trying to kiss the ice surface at high speed. He’s a free agent this summer, and any team that is interested in trading for two months of Alex Edler isn’t interested in giving up much to do it. He’s 32 now, and there was a time a year or two ago where he would have been worth far more.
He won’t play tonight, and hence for the first time in a long time, Hawks fans will look upon the squad in white and green and blue and not see any villains from battles past. There will be no reminder of what was, what hockey could be at its most passionate and dangerous. No one to make you remember, however faintly, what it was like to actually have your blood boil. Perhaps when they return in March we’ll get one more chance to recall the confrontations of yore. Perhaps we’re not really ready to say goodbye just yet. Not until the next rival identified.
Game #55 Preview Suite