I have said it before and I will say it time and time again - no team will win a Stanley Cup with Todd Bertuzzi in the lineup.
As always, I have to preface my Bertuzzi comments by admitting I have never, ever liked Bertuzzi. That's not uncommon nowadays, but unlike most people, I could not stand the guy before the whole Steve Moore incident. Even back in 2003, when Bertuzzi was at his unstoppable best, I could not warm to him despite my being an ardent Vancouver Canucks fan.
For all his amazing ability, size and puck skills, he is almost rendered ineffective because he is incredibly undisciplined. In fact, he is probably the most undisciplined player I have ever seen.
I do not just mean in terms of physical plays and penalties. He is not willing to do the little things necessary for team success. He probably holds the NHL record for taking the most penalties while his team has the man advantage. I find him to be amazingly selfish, frustratingly lazy but almost worst of all I would even question his hockey sense.
Take last night. The Calgary Flames are playing in their most important game of the season, trying to stave off elimination by the Chicago Blackhawks. Just 1:27 into the game Bertuzzi takes a needless elbowing penalty, putting his team behind the 8-ball almost from the start of the game, just like in game 5 I might add. Less than a minute later Patrick Kane scores to give Chicago the much needed early edge. Adam Burish scored eight minutes later (both goals were assisted by Dustin Byfuglein, a Bertuzzi like clone in terms of size and skills), and the Flames were all but officially extinguished by the mid way point of the first period.
It all reminds me of the 2006 Olympics. Remember that Canada-Russia game that ended Canada's medal hopes? Let me refresh your memory. The two teams were entangled in a real naibiter, 0-0 after two periods. Alexander Ovechkin scored the game winning goal early in the penalty box. Where was Bertuzzi? In the penalty box after taking a lazy interference penalty.
More proof in the pudding - a team can not win with Todd Bertuzzi.