March 21 2012 11:53PM
(This didn't actually happen in this game. Do you really think Keith would have answered the bell?)
It was close, it was painful, it was thrilling, but most importantly the Vancouver Canucks put forward a strong second half effort in a game that was overshadowed by a sideshow of Duncan Keith elbowing Daniel Sedin in the face and walking away with a two-minute minor. There was a lot of emotion in the game after that incident, but cooler heads prevailed in the end and the teams played a penalty-free, open ice game of hockey in the third period in a game that was taken to overtime.
From there, the Canucks had pressure, but Chicago got the only two chances of the extra frame, with Andrew Shaw re-directing a Johnny Oduya shot from in close that fooled Roberto Luongo and gave the Blackhawks two points.
This game had a big negative (other than the loss) but some positives as well. For full analysis, scoring chances, the Statistical Three Stars and Goats, click past the jump...
-The real important numbers here, the Canucks out-hit Chicago 38-24 and blocked 19 shots to Chicago's 15. (Just kidding!) The Canucks were out-chanced 20-14 overall, 15-11 at even strength, but got the better of Chicago 9-6 with the score tied at 5-on-5.
-This may be the only time I ever write something like this, but this game took on a different complexion after Henrik Sedin took his second goaltender interference minor. The Canucks had been giving up a lot of chances, particularly on the powerplay after that, but they fed into the anger of their Captain. From Henrik's release from the Vancouver penalty box to midway through the third period, the Canucks dominated, getting nine scoring chances and giving up just three, including a run of seven in the third.
-Whatever Sedin or Alain Vigneault said in the dressing room between second and third, it worked. The Canucks got chances from every line and moved the puck extremely well with some very good physical play defensively. They took away a lot of chances and won some battles, easing the pressure off Roberto Luongo, at least for a period of play. It looked like the Canucks we're used to seeing and may see come playoffs.
-I don't often write stuff like that, so enjoy it. Henrik is really angry about his brother being hit.
-I'd like to stay away from the hit and focus on the game, however. Marian Hossa and Patrick Kane were a one-two punch of chaos in the Vancouver end, victimizing Dan Hamhuis and Sami Salo who were skating together for some reason. The two combined for nine shots on goal, but eight of those were counted as scoring chances. Kane had another chance miss just seconds before his goal. Whatever those two were doing, they got a lot of opportunities in close.
-The Canucks didn't really have a dominant offensive player, but Chris Higgins had two glorious chances in the third period and a couple of fluke saves by Corey Crawford (he didn't even seem to be aware the puck hit him) cost the Canucks a late goal. Ryan Kesler finally started moving the puck, but he banks on that circle wrist shot far too often. I'd like to see him get inside more.
-Like Mason Raymond, who was back in the lineup and played pretty well. He had two of Vancouver's 11 chances on goal and had a team-high five shots on goal. You can tell that he's about to get it going, and I guess it depends who gets to play Henrik's left side in the coming weeks with Daniel's expected concussion, though I think it will be Zack Kassian for some reason.
-I mark all chances created, which is defined as a clear attempted pass to set up a scoring chance to a shooter in a scoring chance area or with a clear path to a scoring chance area, in my notebook under a column called "pass". I record the player number.
-I bring this up because I wrote "41" in the margin next to a Canucks scoring chance.
-I thought I was drunk, but it was there. Andrew Alberts set up a scoring chance.
-Alberts and partner Chris Tanev played an effective low-minute, low-event game against a few of Chicago's scrubs. David Bolland, Bryan Bickell, and Shaw in particular. Brendan Morrison and Dylan Olsen also saw some shifts there. Again, though it was routine competition, Tanev didn't allow a scoring chance again.
-The Canucks had three special team's scoring chances. None of these were on the powerplay, which looked awful.
-By that respect, the Canucks managed three scoring chances on the penalty kill despite playing a minute of Ryan Kesler for some reason not skating to the bench to get a new stick after his breaks. I've never seen this play end positively, because even if he reaches the puck, he can't deflect it away. The team can afford to play 10 seconds 3-on-5 while Kesler gets a stick. The play eventually only ended with Roberto Luongo covered the puck.
-This happened early on. I guess it's a highlight:
-Gee whiz, Luongo was good tonight. But you guys watched the game, so you don't need to necessarily know what the stats say.
-Corey Crawford put up good numbers, but he didn't look too comfortable in the crease. Made a couple of good perimeter saves in the OT, including on the one that led to the OT. He kicks out his pads really quickly, so the puck makes a good noise when it bounces off his pad. THUD.
-Chicago's best defenceman statistically was Nick Leddy. He involved himself in the offence and was fortunate enough to get 6 and a half minutes with Patrick Kane. He was traded, at one point, by the Minnesota Wild for Cam Barker.
-In Manny Malhotra's absence, the Canucks had a lot of defensive zone faceoffs to win (24 at even strength!!). Samme Pahlsson had 14 of those, Kesler was on for 12. Well, they didn't necessarily take those draws but they were on the ice for them. Pahlsson was 9-for-11 in defensive zone draws on the night.
-Okay, that's enough. Please complain about the hit, or anything that we might have missed, in the comments section.
Statistical Three Stars
- Patrick Kane
- Marian Hossa
- Nick Leddy
Statistical Three Goats
- Dan Hamhuis
- David Bolland
- Bryan Bickell
(Whoops, forgot to post these:)
Scoring Chances for NHL Game Number 21100
|VAN||1||19:34||VAN G 1-0 Hansen||1||2||6||20||26||36||8||15||27||50||81||88||5v5|
|CHI||2||16:48||CHI G 1-1 Kane||1||3||20||26||36||41||2||7||15||50||81||88||5v5|
|CHI||4||2:18||CHI G 2-1 Shaw||1||6||21||23||33||4||27||36||50||65||4v4|
|Period||Totals||EV||PP||5v3 PP||SH||5v3 SH|