1). He isn't Chris Drury
2). He isn't Daniel Briere
3). ??? wizards?
4). His contract, which is pretty much Kevin Lowe's fault and then Darcy Regier's fault for blowing signing Daniel Briere and feeling he had to do something to make up for it. (Seriously, fuck Chris Drury. He was looking to sleep his way into MSG. Briere would've stayed put if the money was respectable.)
I should actually probably flip that list because if Vanek was making what Parise or Bobby Ryan make, no one would really give two shits. No one would be saying things like "Vanek is paid to shoot!" I think that's really stupid. (Sorry.) I think every player is paid for the same reason...to do whatever they can to win the game. I mean would you say that about any other player? Would you gripe about Connolly shooting because he's paid to be a playmaker (I think...) Do you gripe about Gaustad taking important faceoffs because Roy and Connolly are paid MORE to take faceoffs? Do you gripe about Myers lugging the puck up the ice because he's paid to play defense (or maybe not...)?
Also caused SARS and swine flu
I feel like every season, someone suggests its a certain players fault if the team doesn't perform well. And for the rest of the season, everyone piles on that player and sees what they want to see, regardless of what actually happens. Because of his contract, Thomas Vanek has been due for a while and this is clearly his season. I bet Jochen Hecht and Hank Tallinder are happy about it though.
*Note* I know some people are going to want to point out that Ruff labeled Vanek as a "shooter," in his postgame presser which makes me look wrong. I assure you this isn't true. Ruff gave Vanek credit for making a great play (I believe the quote was "I like his thinking but he probably should have tried to put it by Marty"). Ruff's mentality seems to be the same as mine. Yes Vanek should be shooting more...his apparent unwillingness to shoot is troubling. But I feel (and I feel that Ruff feels (like that?)) that Vanek made a pretty damn good play in overtime and Roy just fucked it up.