Ouch, That Hertl: Canucks Get Blanked by the Sharks

Dimitri Filipovic
September 24 2013 10:57PM


Andrew Alberts must be a secret agent. It's the only possible explanation for his performance tonight.

The Canucks entered Tuesday night's game in San Jose coming off of an impressive victory against the Coyotes the previous night. Despite a few lineup changes - Higgins, Garrison, and Luongo, most notably - they were still icing a more than competent crew, so there was reason to believe that we'd be treated to a good game.

Early on, the Sedins - reunited with Alex Burrows and it feeeeeeels so goooood - generated a handful of quality chances. They were buzzing. There was also a play where Chris Tanev rang iron with a shot from the point as Jannik Hansen caused a ruckus in front of Antti Niemi. 

But then, the direction of the game changed and things sort of went off the rails.. 

Did you notice how I tried to do this whole "be positive" thing at the outset of this post? It was mostly a ploy to get you to click past the jump and stick around, and if you're reading this, it worked. 

I asked our followers on Twitter for some positive takeaways from the game. There were some decent replies:

All very fair. I'd also add that Bo Horvat, in his biggest test to-date, didn't look out of place and I'm growing more and more comfortable with the idea of him starting the season as the team's 3rd line centre by the day. 

It's definitely a little disconcerting that the Canucks were pounded so soundly while sending out a lineup that at least somewhat resembled one we'll see when the games start counting. But we should keep in mind that we'll never see that trainwreck of a 3rd pairing out on the ice together. I would've figured that they'd be ineffective together, but man oh man, they were u-g-l-y. They were out for 3 goals against, and for a 4th, Alberts was in the penalty box. 

With the team down by 3 Tom Sestito got into a fight with Matt Pelech. The Sharks scored a goal to make it 4-0 just a few minutes later. I didn't see a spark, but maybe I wasn't watching the game the right way. 

Meanwhile, Eddie Lack didn't exactly look very good in net. I know that the team in front of him certainly didn't help him out, but his positioning routinely looked very poor, and the Sharks picked him apart. By my count there were 2 or 3 posts mixed in there as well, so things really could have gotten even uglier.

I mostly just put this together so that you guys would have a place to discuss the game. Hopefully there won't be panic. I have to confess that as the game went on I began to pay attention to it less and less. Was too busy trying to come up with witty comments in 140 characters or less. But mostly, I just can't wait for October 3rd. Speaking of.. the New York Rangers and Alain Vigneault stroll into town on Thursday night for the team's final preseason outing. 

Hopefully we won't have to go 344 posts between now and the next win for the Canucks.

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Dimitri Filipovic writes about hockey on the internet, and is the Managing Editor of Canucks Army. You can follow him on Twitter @DimFilipovic, and email him at dimitri.filipovic@gmail.com.
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#51 NM00
September 26 2013, 12:33PM
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argoleas wrote:

Seems to me that for Hamhuis, the best explanation is that he really wanted to play for a winner in Vancouver. I dont see him having said "wow, I want to play for MG", but I doubt he would have wanted to be here if this was the Messier era. The combination of team on the cusp, a top spot to play on, and home team is what a MasterCard commercial would qualify as "priceless." If we give credit to MG it would be for being in the right place at the right time (and not saying destroyed what Nurke/Nonis had bequeathed to him). Does MG deserve any direct credit for getting Hamhuis? I would agree no way. It was more a case of the right conditions being in Vancouver (and here we may give MG credit, for all its worth), but in reality, the only credit MG should get here is for not creating conditions that would prevent such home-comings, and I would agree that most GMs would succeed in this manner. It is clear from the reporting that Hamhuis always wanted to return home, and the other offers were never seriously entertained. MG did not create any situation that prevented this from happening, and he did from the start make it known he was very open to having local boys return home.

Interesting aside is: Has that changed? Would a Hamhuis choose to sign today?

I agree with this.

As I've said before, Gillis accepted Hamhuis' gift.

By the same token, I'd argue Minnesota accepted Parise & Suter's gift.

That's just the nature of free agency...

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#52 JCDavies
September 26 2013, 01:20PM
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@NM00

I still don't follow.

Young players get older and better = nothing to do with Gillis

Same players get older again and begin to produce less = Gillis is to blame for the drop in production?

Help me out with this.

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#53 NM00
September 26 2013, 01:38PM
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@JCDavies

For the most part, I am not blaming him for the rise and fall of the players he inherited.

There are exceptions, though.

One example would be Luongo. From making him captain to signing him until he's 43 to jerking him around (I know we don't quite agree here, though) the last two years I think there is some blame to go here for diminishing the asset beyond the manner in which age has diminished the asset.

Other examples could be Bieksa & Burrows as they age. Sedin extensions could be another.

I've referenced the 10/50/31 core before...

I am blaming him for the transactions he has made to supplement what he inherited.

Do you really need the list again? I assume you were tired of it by now...

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#54 5minutesinthebox
September 26 2013, 01:41PM
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@NM00

"Also, show me the case that right mix of role players can win you a cup WITHOUT the right mix of core players..."

That was never the argument. Of course you need the right core group to win a Cup. But there are a ton of teams in the league who have a very good core group who have yet to get a sniff at the Cup.

And the Canucks were one of them until they had the right mix of depth.

Manny, Torres, Hansen, Higgins, Lapierre...these were all major contributors to that success.

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#55 NM00
September 26 2013, 01:59PM
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5minutesinthebox wrote:

"Also, show me the case that right mix of role players can win you a cup WITHOUT the right mix of core players..."

That was never the argument. Of course you need the right core group to win a Cup. But there are a ton of teams in the league who have a very good core group who have yet to get a sniff at the Cup.

And the Canucks were one of them until they had the right mix of depth.

Manny, Torres, Hansen, Higgins, Lapierre...these were all major contributors to that success.

For a brief moment in time the Canucks had a very good bullpen...

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#56 JCDavies
September 27 2013, 01:33PM
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@NM00

No, I'm just trying to get a sense of where you are coming from on this particular issue, I definitely do not need that list again. I'm sure you are tired of writing it as well. ;)

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