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Shane O'Brien more effective when calm

Apr 26, 2010, 2:40 PM EDT

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Poor Shane O’Brien. He’s replaced Kyle Wellwood this season as the
brunt of any jokes involving the Vancouver Canucks and all he did was
gain a few pounds, stay out too late partying and show up late to
practices and team meetings. That’s just off the ice.

On the ice,
he had come under a fire a bit in the first round series for having his
emotions get the best of him at times. Celebrating after a fight against
Wayne Simmonds didn’t help much. Yet in the all-important Game 6
against the Kings, O’Brien perhaps had his best game. It’s no
coincidence that he was a bit more under control emotionally as well.
Per Ben Kuzma of The Province:

“I felt I did a
better job of being more relaxed [Sunday] and I told
myself that before the game,” said O’Brien. “Growing up, you dream of
this situation and I get a little emotional sometimes and do some stupid
things here and there. But it’s about winning and my teammates, who
have been great to me. And you definitely don’t put yourself ahead of
the team and I’ve just got to keep telling myself that.”

With
the Canucks a bit shorthanded on the blueline, O’Brien will be all the
more important as the Canucks move onto the next round and beyond. The
controversial, emotionally charged O’Brien is great blog fodder, but the
Canucks just need him to do what he was doing best in Game 6: just
play.

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