Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Ed Willes of the Vancouver Province,
How do you analyze this one?
Six minutes in to Saturday night’s statement game against the New York Rangers, the Vancouver Canucks were down 3-0, had surrendered 18 odd-man rushes and generally looked to be in the middle of a nervous breakdown.
The shakeup to the lines, occasioned by three straight substandard starts on the road, had only succeeded in causing mass confusion and panic. And that was on the ice and in the stands.
Sadly, it wouldn’t get any better over the next two and a half hours.
So, faced with this horrific display, the faithful have two choices. Either they believe this is really the Canucks, in which case they’ll start screaming and might not stop until April. Or they believe this is just one of those spells every NHL team confronts during the season and the real Canucks are the team of October and November.
That, at least, would be the more comforting option. But there was something about the Canucks’ performance in their 5-1 loss to the Rangers and Alain Vigneault that’s not so easily dismissed.
from Ben Kuzma of the Vancouver Province,
After being levelled by a Stephane Robidas elbow to his chin Saturday in Toronto — and struggling to regain his balance and leaving in the second period to be evaluated in the league-mandated quiet room — the Vancouver Canucks winger is trying to regain his stability. And he’s trying to wrap his head around the NHL’s decision not suspend the Maple Leafs defenceman, who only received an elbowing penalty.
Matthias was also levelled by a Mike Ribeiro cornerboards hit to the head on Nov. 2 at Rogers Arena, a crushing left arm shot that sent him to the ice and he struggled to regain his balance. The Nashville Predators forward was assessed a minor penalty for a hit to the head. That’s it. Two crushing blows. Not one suspension.
Alex Burrows was suspended three games after a late hit to the head of Montreal Canadiens defenceman Alexei Emelin on Oct. 30, even though there was no penalty on the play.
“If we say anything we’re looked upon as complainers,” said Matthias. “I don’t know why that is. I was always taught to get up when you might be hurt. I had may parents in the stands (Toronto) and I’m not going to lay on the ice — I’m going to try and do my best to get up and get to the room. On both hits I got up right away and didn’t say anything to the media after. We were respectful and didn’t say anything out of context, and I don’t know why that would be the case. They were blatant hits to my head and there was no call (suspension). Nothing.
more and you can review both hits below..
Derek Dorsett had some strong words about his altercation with Chris Neil on Sunday, saying that the Ottawa forward’s behaviour lacked class and is proof of just how ‘stupid’ he is.
Tough no-call and I probably agree with it. Bo Horvat did have the puck so no interference for me.
Johan Franzen's skate caught the face of Alex Burrows who did return to the bench after going for repairs.
Mark Donnelly with a version of "Danny Boy" in remembrance of Pat Quinn.
from Pierre LeBrun of ESPN,
Some people keep waiting for the bottom to fall out on the Vancouver Canucks, and and it certainly hasn't been pretty every single night this season. However, Sunday night's full-value, 4-1 win over the visiting Chicago Blackhawks improved Vancouver's record to 14-6-1.
This was a team rival GMs pointed to most during my preseason conversations as a potential surprise. The new Trevor Linden-Jim Benning-Willie Desjardins regime has not disappointed, that is for sure. An important theme from the outset has been whether they could get enough secondary scoring to contend for a playoff spot.
Jannik Hanen's hat trick Sunday night was yet another example of that kind of secondary scoring the Canucks have got so far this season. If that continues, the Canucks should be playoff-bound.
read on for Burnside on Tikhonov for the HHOF, Custance on the Rangers and Strang on the Blues...
No update on the extent of the injury and it will be tough on the Canucks if Hamuis is lost for a lengthy period.
from Ed Willes of the Vancouver Province,
At a similar point in last season's schedule, the Canucks were 10-5-2 and, if memory serves, John Tortorella was getting some early run for coach-of-the-year. You may also remember the way 2012-13 ended. Tires. Fire. Shame. Everyone getting fired.
Just putting it out there. It could happen again.
And with that out of the way, let's get to the fun part.
With their 4-3 overtime win over the Ottawa Senators, the Canucks own the best record in the Western Conference and are tied for first overall with Tampa Bay. The Canucks. In first place. Take a picture. Put it on your fridge. Remember this day.
After all, it's been a while.
"When you've got a lot of new guys and new coaches, it's important," Henrik Sedin said of the Canucks' start, shortly after he took out an easel and painted the game-winner with his brother Daniel. "A lot of doubt would have crept into this dressing room if you come out and you're below .500. I think the guys trust each other and we trust the coaches. We have something to build on."
from Dan Murphy of Sportsnet,
Sportsnet had a chance to sit down Ryan Kesler at the Ducks practice facility in Anaheim on Saturday morning to talk about the upcoming game against his former team. You can certainly tell Kesler is certainly happy in Orange County. Here are some excerpts from the interview
On why he thinks it was the right time to move on
Talking with my agent and Jim [Benning] and Trevor [Linden] I just came to the understanding that it was time to go. Other than that I think it’s a private conversation for details and stuff like that. I was stuck in a rut and 11 years in a city is a long time. If you asked me I thought I would retire as a Canuck and obviously that didn’t happen and a new chapter is starting and I’m excited for this opportunity.
On the move to Anaheim
It’s a new chapter. I’m extremely excited about it. But saying that you miss your teammates, your old teammates and friends. Kevin [Bieksa], Alex [Burrows], and the Sedins. You play with them for 11 years and you grow bonds with them and that’s probably the biggest thing I’m going to miss. This chapter I’m growing new bonds with my teammates and we’re a pretty good team so it’s pretty exciting to come to the rink everyday and succeed.
continued and note tthe video on the linked page is geo blocked, only Canadian IPs can see the video...
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