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Category: Vancouver-Canucks

Be Wary Of ‘Tanks’

from Ed Willes of the Vancouver Province,

If you were laying out a blueprint for a tank job, you’d look at the model provided by the Buffalo Sabres over the last six seasons and think, “Yes. Genius.”

In that time, the Swordsmen have drafted first overall, eighth, eighth, second in back-to-back years, eighth and 12th. In two of those years, 2012 and 2013, they had two first-rounders, the lowest of which was 16th. They also had 12 second-rounders over that span.

The Sabres, in short, have been gifted resources of which the Canucks and every other NHL team could only dream. But here’s the cautionary tale provided by this franchise and everyone else who ventures down rebuild road. They haven’t made the playoffs in those six seasons, their highest point total is 81 and, in this, the seventh season of the rebuild, they currently sit in ninth place in the East.

I believe it was former Flint Generals coach Percy Shelley who wrote: “Look on my works, ye mighty, and despair.”

continued

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The Edmonton Oilers Defeated The Vancouver Canucks As The Teams Battle For A Wild Card Spot

from Jim Matheson of the Edmonton Journal,

Did anybody figure NHL Game 724 in the middle of January between the Edmonton Oilers and the Vancouver Canucks would actually have playoff, rather than lottery implications for both teams?

So here we were Wednesday night as the Oilers and Canucks went at it for wild card spots. Maybe not exactly Tampa Bay against Winnipeg or Calgary in an offensive battle, but still awfully good theatre.

“Every game is a sudden death elimination game,” said Oilers head coach Ken Hitchcock, hours before his club won 3-2 in a shootout as Alex Chiasson ripped one over Jacob Markstrom’s glove on the sixth shooter.

“We’re going to be like this for a couple months. It’s just the way it is. You’re going to play well in some games and not win or you’re going to have some really emotional wins or losses.”

continued

All the game highlights are below.

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Late Night Vancouver/Anaheim Trade

Vancouver, BC - Vancouver Canucks General Manager Jim Benning announced today that the club has acquired defenceman Luke Schenn and a 7th round pick in the 2020 NHL Entry Draft from the Anaheim Ducks in exchange for defenceman Michael Del Zotto. Schenn will report directly to the Utica Comets.

Schenn, 29, has split the 2018.19 season between Anaheim (eight games played) and the San Diego Gulls (2-8-10 in 22 games played). In 716 career NHL games split between Anaheim, Arizona, Los Angeles, Philadelphia and Toronto, the 6-2, 221-pound defenceman has registered 143 points (30-113-143). He has also collected two goals and an assist in 12 career Stanley Cup Playoff games.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Anaheim Ducks, Vancouver Canucks, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

The Vancouver Canucks Are In The Hunt For The Playoffs

from Ed Willes of the Vancouver Province,

We’re late to this — which is the story of our career — but mid-January is generally the time when grades and awards are passed out for the first half of the NHL season. With that in mind, let’s start with the Canucks.

The locals find themselves in 11th place in the West but two points out of the second wild-card spot. For most teams that would be considered a disappointment. For the Canucks it qualifies as a crowning achievement.

Elias Pettersson, of course, is the main reason for that, but there have been encouraging signs elsewhere in the lineup, starting with the goaltending.

Jacob Markstrom isn’t exactly front-and-centre in the Vezina conversation, but he’s more than held up his end of the bargain. Markstrom is down the list in save percentage and goals-against average, but his 17 wins were as many as Carey Price and Pekka Rinne before Monday night and puts him in the league’s top 10.

continued

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Mike Matheson Didn’t Answer The Bell Last Night

from  Iain MacIntyre of Sportsnet,

Apparently, you can lead a Panther to water but you can’t make him fight. Something like that.

The Vancouver Canucks tried Sunday to engage Panther defenceman Mike Matheson for injuring star rookie Elias Pettersson on a bodyslam behind the play Oct. 13 in Florida.

Matheson, whose subsequent two-game suspension by the National Hockey League was only one-third the time Pettersson missed due to a concussion, refused in the first 10 minutes of the rematch — exactly three months later — to fight Canucks Jake Virtanen or Antoine Roussel.

Virtanen was assessed the only minor penalty at 9:26 of the first period when he crashed into a post-whistle scrum in which Roussel already had hold of Matheson, who reiterated before Sunday’s game that he never intended to injure Pettersson.

The Canucks were excoriated on social media for not attacking Matheson three months ago, when his takedown of Pettersson occurred largely unwitnessed in the third period of a game Vancouver coach Travis Green ordered his players to focus on winning.

At this stage of NHL’s evolution, no one fights if he doesn’t want to and many players no longer abide by quaint code – if they’re aware of it at all – that you should make yourself available to some degree to back up your actions if you play tough against a skilled opponent and injure him.

Matheson is a 24-year-old who has played 207 NHL games and fought once. He wasn’t going to double that total on Sunday.

continued

Below, catch the game highlights of Vancouver's 5-1 win over Florida plus a fight between Erik Gudbranson and Micheal Haley.

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Filed in: NHL Teams, Florida Panthers, Vancouver Canucks, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Stages Of A Rebuild

from Ed Willes of the Vancouver Province,

This brings us around to the fourth and largest group of the rebuild club, a collection of teams that, through their own ineptitude, have accumulated some attractive pieces in the draft. In time they could free themselves from rebuild bondage and join the Winnipegs and Torontos. They could also be trapped in that Dallas-Minnesota netherworld....

The problem is there are at least 10 other teams in the same position. As it happens, the next six teams that blow through town — beginning Thursday with the Arizona Coyotes, running through Sunday and the Florida Panthers and continuing with the Oilers, Sabres, Red Wings and Hurricanes — are members, more or less, of that same club, which raises the question: Which of these teams will get it right?

Just wish like hell we could tell you.

Compare, for instance, the Canucks’ lineup and the Coyotes’ lineup. In the last four drafts, the Canucks have picked 23rd, fifth, fifth and seventh. The Coyotes have picked third, seventh and 16th and, in 2016, 23rd and fifth.

You know about the Canucks’ young core. The Coyotes, for their part, have assembled a nucleus of Clayton Keller, Jakob Chychrun and Alex Galchenyuk (the return for Max Domi) with centre Barrett Hayton coming.

So, tell me, who’s farther ahead?

more

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Video- Elias Pettersson Injury

No update on Pettersson at this time.

 

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  Tags: elias+pettersson

Video- Three More Goals For Elias Pettersson

from Patrick Johnston of the Vancouver Province,

He’s scoring at a rate that is better than Malkin’s or McDavid’s. Crosby’s and Ovechkin’s are slightly ahead. (Canucks Army’s Jeremy Davispointed out to me that the latter two’s rookie seasons were in 05-06, the first post-lockout season when referees cracked down hard on hooking and holding and the scoring rate jumped to levels we’ve not seen since.)

This is called elite talent.

Seriously, we’ve not seen anything quite like this before.

The Sedins were good but not world-beaters as rookies. (Maybe they might have been had the Canucks not already had a top-six without them.)

Pavel Bure was outstanding as a rookie, scoring 36 times in 65 games (and 24 assists). But Pettersson, playing in a lower-scoring era, is scoring at a better pace than Bure.

And Bure’s point total is all because he finally found his groove in February of 1992. He scored 22 goals in the final 22 games of the season.

more

Pettersson had a hat trick last night, watch the goals below.

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  Tags: elias+pettersson

The Calgary Flames Scored Two Short-Handed Goals But Lost To The Vancouver Canucks In OT

from Wes Gilbertson at the Calgary Sun,

Penalty problems?

The opposite, actually.

The Calgary Flames notched a pair of short-handed goals Saturday, surging into the league lead for damage done in an outnumbered situation.

Trouble is, the Saddledome hosts couldn’t score in any other scenario in what turned out to be a 3-2 overtime loss to the Vancouver Canucks.

“We’re more concerned with killing the penalty when we’re on the penalty kill,” Flames head coach Bill Peters had stressed after Saturday’s morning skate. “The short-handed goals for are a bonus, but that’s not a focus, by any stretch of the imagination. We’re not relying on that.”

On this night, a pair of short-handed strikes weren’t enough. Despite that rare double from Mark Jankowski and Travis Hamonic, the Canucks eventually prevailed on Alex Edler’s back-door one-timer — credit Brock Boeser for a smooth setup — at the 3:06 mark of the bonus session.

continued

Game highlights below.

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A Bad Loss For The Edmonton Oilers, A Good Win For The Vancouver Canucks

from Terry Jones of the Edmonton Sun,

At least one of the Edmonton Oilers had an understanding of how big the game was for them Thursday night at Rogers Place.

“If we lose, they take our playoff spot. It’s a big matchup. You never want to give your playoff spot up,” said Connor McDavid at the morning skate.

Unfortunately, McDavid delivered that message to the media, not to his teammates.

Five nights before turning the calendar ahead to 2019, the Oilers appeared to have turned it back to the decade of darkness — back before they were wearing orange, back when fans were throwing blue home jerseys on the ice.

To suggest they didn’t show up for this extra large Pacific Division game to open what I call Separation Season would be a massive understatement.

continued

from Ben Kuzma of the Vancouver Province,

Points to ponder as the Canucks quickly found their post-Christmas break stride, were on their heels in the second period and found a way to grind out a 4-2 win over the Oilers to hit the .500 mark (18-18-4) to start a six-game trip off on the right foot:

Meaningful games mean everything

The Canucks handed the Oilers their fourth-consecutive loss and fifth in the last six games by finding a way to win.

It wasn’t pretty because aside from Elias Pettersson doing his electric thing in the first period, it was about grinding one out. It was about the fourth line being as important — or more important — than the first on a night when the Oilers made a strong second-period surge with an 11-5 advantage and 22-11 shot dominance after 40 minutes.

continued

Game highlights below.

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About Kukla's Korner Hockey

Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.

From breaking news to in-depth stories around the league, KK Hockey is updated with fresh stories all day long and will bring you the latest news as quickly as possible.

Email Paul anytime at pk@kuklaskorner.com

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