Ashamedly, we are jumping on the band wagon of Tony Gallagher’s piece in today’s Vancouver Province, which suggests that Coach Vigneault is not exactly making life easy for the prized prospect of the Mike Gills regime.
Based on Hodgson’s line assignment between two fire hydrants in the back half of last night’s split squad double header and reading between the lines of Hodgson’s recent training camp comments really makes you wonder whether Coach Vigneault and General Manager Mike Gillis are on the same page when it comes to his development.
Down the stretch last season and into the playoffs, the Canucks had multiple opportunities to give Cody some legitimate NHL exposure. And they chose not to.
Meanwhile, the Stanley Cup champion Boston Bruins had little issue with playing their number one prospect nineteen year old Tyler Seguin ten minutes per night by the close of the Stanley Cup Final. Twenty year old Hodgson, of course, was stuck in the press box despite injuries that allowed the soon to be jetissoned Jeff Tambellini a spot on the second line in the game that meant everything to this franchise.
The Canucks’ conservative treatment of Hodgson to date is mostly down to his injury trouble though it’s worth noting that he has been healthy for well over a year. And as a top team, they certainly have the luxury of taking their sweet time with him. But really, at some point, we must see whether he can play. And for a crafty skill player like Hodgson that means some quality ice time, not plumbing.
And while the puck has yet to drop on this season, we sure hope that Hodgson isn’t about to become this year’s Mathieu Schneider or Shane O’Brien or Keith Ballard…