December 03 2016 09:06PM
There's no sense mincing words: for the past few years, there hasn't been much to cheer for in Vancouver. The team has been, at best, mediocre since 2014, and many Canucks' fans have been more concerned about where the team is in the draft standings than where they rank in their division.
Tonight, however, was different. Between the shenanigans in the Canucks' last matchup with Toronto, and Patrick O'Sullivan mouthing off on Toronto radio this afternoon, Team Tank and Team Playoffs were able to unite. For just one night, the bickering about the team's direction was put aside, and Canucks fans sat with bated breath hoping for a win.
And wouldn't you know it, they got one. Did they deserve it? Nope. Will we take it? Hell. Yes.
December 03 2016 07:38PM
Photo Credit: Gregory Fisher - USA TODAY Sports
The Canucks need scoring, and they haven't exactly kept that a secret. For as long as Jim Benning's been Vancouver's General Manager, it seems, the Canucks have been actively scouring the market for that elusive scoring winger with size.
Headlinezzzzzz -- https://t.co/3gd3M4ZCuD— Elliotte Friedman (@FriedgeHNIC) December 4, 2016
So it came as some surprise when the Canucks were connected to the Boston Bruins Ryan Spooner on CBC Headlines during tonight's Hockey Night in Canada. Spooner isn't the most physically imposing player, and he's played the majority of his career at centre. You know what he does do, though? He scores goals. And lots of them, too.
December 03 2016 06:26PM
Photo Credit: Gary A. Vasquez
Teddy Purcell is one of the better-travelled forwards in the NHL, and it appears as though another destination awaits the veteran forward based on this Elliott Friedman report.
Ted Purcell is on waivers from LA— Elliotte Friedman (@FriedgeHNIC) December 3, 2016
The Los Angeles Kings hoped they'd plugged an area of need when they signed Purcell on the cheap in the dog days of summer, but that best-laid plan hasn't come together. In 12 games with the Kings, Purcell's amassed two assists at even strength and is their single worst player by Corsi For at 44% on the season.
Generally, when we're looking at veterans that find themselves on the waiver wire, it's less about them being bad as it is them not hitting organizational expectations. Purcell's is a rare case where the players hit the mark on both fronts, though, and is teetering on the edge of losing his NHL career entirely.
Is this a situation where the Canucks can capitalize on an ugly fit and acquire a veteran scorer with a history of productivity for, well, nothing? Or would the Canucks be wise to pass up on Purcell's tenuous status as an NHL player? Let's delve in and find out.
December 03 2016 01:43PM
With the Vancouver Canucks playing host to the Toronto Maple Leafs, the visiting team's media circus has followed them across the Rockies and into Rogers Arena.
This trip, though, is a bit out of the ordinary. When these teams last played a month ago, each side wreaked physical havoc on the other. Naturally, the media wants player responses and to see if those same fires burn within them a month later.
There are those, though, who'd prefer to take a path less travelled. Count Sportsnet's Luke Fox among them. He's one of a handful of Toronto press members who've traversed Rogers Arena already, and he has the inside track on interviews as a result. He spoke with Canucks President Trevor Linden, in a lengthy question and answer format interview.
December 03 2016 09:00AM
Photo Credit: Anne-Marie Sorvin - USA TODAY Sports
The romanticism of playing in a Canadian market certainly has its allure. It isn't without its pratfalls either, and one needn't look any further than the Canucks' Luca Sbisa to see those very real implications.
Fairly or otherwise, Sbisa's spent the entirety of his time in the Canucks organization at the butt end of many a fan and analyst's jokes. His combined penchant for giveaways, Italian heritage and a perhaps a hint of assonance meant he wasn't turning pucks over -- he was delivering pizzas. Or rather, he was delivering Spizzas.
That hasn't been the case this season. Sbisa's playing the best hockey of his career, every bit invigorated by the offensive freedoms of a newly minted system and supported by the defensive patience their coaches preach.