He’s one of the most prominent Danish players in the NHL and has played over 500 games with the Vancouver Canucks. Jannik Hansen has always been a decent player, but now, in his ninth NHL season, the 29-year old is on his way to having his best season yet offensively.
Hansen’s career best for points was in 2011-12 when he had 16 goals and 23 assists (39 points) through 82 games. So far this season through 36 games he has 10 goals and 10 assists. If he keeps scoring at the rate he is now, Hansen will finally reach the 20-goal mark, something which he has yet to do since first suiting up with the Canucks in 2007.
Called “Mr. Versatility” by several news sources, Hansen has shown his ability to play on different lines over his years in the NHL. While he has usually slotted in on the second or third line, since November 10th Hansen has been playing on the first line with the Sedins, and both him and the Sedins have been flourishing.
“I’ve changed lines for the past eight years here, so it’s no different for me,” Hansen told canucks.com of playing on the first line. “You get the opportunity and you run with it, then you help the team, and if not there are plenty of guys who can do it.”
Six of the seven goals Hansen has scored since playing with the Sedins have been assisted on by one or both of the twins. The trio tore apart Columbus in their first game together on November 10th, combining for 11 points, four of which were Hansen’s. With his 20 points overall, Hansen is third on the team for points behind the Sedins and is tied for second in goals with Radim Vrbata.
Perhaps one of the reasons Hansen is finding offensive success with the Sedins – and the Sedins finding offensive success with Hansen – is that he is a fast skater who has a good work ethic.
“His skating is big. When he gets in on the forecheck he skates hard and you get energized,” Daniel Sedin told The Vancouver Sun. “He opens up things for me and Hank and he does that with his skating. And he’s a smart player.”
On a team that is not doing so hot, Hansen has been one of the best players. Currently the best fit on the first line with the Sedins, Hansen will hopefully continue to contribute offensively through the remaining 46 games of the season. While the team’s success is most important for the humble and hard-working Dane, reaching the 20-goal mark and/or having the best offensive season of his career will no doubt mean something for this long-serving Canuck.