Canucks: 3 takeaways from the Sedins’ first media availability in new roles

VANCOUVER, BC - FEBRUARY 20: Henrik Sedin speaks to the crowd near Daniel Sedin during a ceremony celebrating their careers as Vancouver Canucks on February 12, 2020 in Vancouver, Canada. (Photo by Ben Nelms/Getty Images)
VANCOUVER, BC - FEBRUARY 20: Henrik Sedin speaks to the crowd near Daniel Sedin during a ceremony celebrating their careers as Vancouver Canucks on February 12, 2020 in Vancouver, Canada. (Photo by Ben Nelms/Getty Images) /

Henrik and Daniel Sedin, arguably the two greatest Vancouver Canucks’ players of all time, are finally returning to the organization.

On Tuesday afternoon, the team released an official statement, naming the twins as Special Advisors in the Hockey Operations Department. On Wednesday, the franchise’s all-time points leader and all-time goals leader, alongside General Manager Jim Benning, spoke to media for the first time in their new positions.

“They’re going to be involved in all of the different aspects of what we do. And that’s from team-building, talking about the types of players we want, what we want the team to look like,” said Benning. “They’ll be part of our pro scouting meetings heading into the expansion draft. They’ll be part of our free agent meetings when we talk about free agents or adding players to our group. They’re going to have a big voice in what we do here.”

Benning also proclaimed that he will be “all ears” with the Sedins now in the fold.

“I’m going to be real open-minded,” he said. “They’re not that far removed from the league. They still know a lot of the players in the league. They know what winning teams look like. So I’m going to be listening to them, and they’re going to be a big part of our decision-making process moving forward.”

Of course, most people tuned into Wednesday morning’s virtual press conference to hear from the two legends themselves. Here’s what Henrik and Daniel had to say on their new roles with the club:

The challenge of coming back

The Sedins were asked why they wanted to come back to the Canucks right now.

“Our only answer is that we care about this team. We decided that when we were done playing that this is a side of the game we think we can help and we’ve taken our time and we care a lot about this team. To be able to come back and help is a great feeling,” said Henrik. “We’re hoping to do a good job and stay in the background as much as possible.”

Henrik spoke about how he and his brother are up for a challenge in learning the business side of hockey.

“We’re coming in as rookies, old rookies,” joked Daniel. “We want to come in and learn all aspects of this side of the business. We’re just excited to be back with the organization. We worked with so many great people throughout the years, great teammates, coaches and management. We’re excited to be back and we’re coming in with wide eyes and we’ll learn.”

“There is going to be a lot of challenges,” said Henrik “We’re excited to work with the hockey side, and with the players and coaches, and be a part of building a team. The business side and how things are run to make trades, for the draft and working with the scouts, how amateur scouting is working, and pro scouting. That is the part of the business where we have never been around. That’s going to be the toughest, and maybe the most exciting part.”

Views on the current team

Daniel was asked about his thoughts on the current Canucks team.

“The core group here is fantastic, so much skill, fun to watch,” he said. “I think with any young core group, they need to take steps every year like we needed to when we were young. That’s kind of the only way your team will get better is if they take those steps, never be satisfied. I think that was the main thing for us when we played. We always wanted to take steps every year. If they can do that, I think this will be an exciting group to be a part of.”

“When you talk about contracts and successful teams and salaries in this era, it’s fairly easy if every player can outplay their own contract,” added Henrik. “That’s an easy way of becoming a good team. You want to have players that want to play here, and be successful here in Vancouver, and that’s the only way you can be successful.”

Their game plan with the AHL affiliate, bigger management roles down the road

One of the roles that the Sedins will take on is helping out with the yet-to-be-named AHL team in Abbotsford, as well as with their coaches and other staff.

“I think it’s great that the AHL team is in Abbotsford,” said Daniel. “It’s close for us and coaches and management to go watch these players.”

As for a plan to rise the ranks to management, Henrik admitted there really wasn’t a plan for that.

“We have no game plan,” said Henrik. “We’ll do the best we can and see where it takes us, and right now we’re happy with this role. We don’t take this lightly. We talked to a lot of people. Trevor Linden was one of them, and Stan Smyl was another and there were others, too. We’re going to find a role where we can do the best job we can and we’ll see where it takes us.”

You can watch the full press conference here.

There’s no doubt that the Sedins are two of the most professional people in the city of Vancouver. There will definitely be some learning curves with the new roles, but many people are hopeful that they can learn the business side of hockey in order to, one day, take on bigger roles within the Canucks’ organization.

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What are your thoughts on the Sedins’ first media availability as Special Advisors? Make sure to drop a comment below!