March 01 2012 11:27PM
After two disappointing losses in extra time in Dallas and Phoenix, respectively, the Vancouver Canucks returned home on Thursday to show off new acquisitions in front of their home fans for the first time. Zack Kassian, Marc-André Gragnani and Samuel Pahlsson all made their debuts in the blue sweater against the St. Louis Blues, having strong games for the most part.
But there wasn't a lot going on in this one. As expected, there was very little space on the ice, as what tends to happen when you have Ken Hitchcock coaching against a coach who has two of the top defensive centres in the game to his credit. Alex Burrows scored the game's first goal midway through the third period off a lucky bounce and Chris Higgins sealed it with a late empty-net effort, while Roberto Luongo held steady for the 29-save shutout.
For a detailed recap, scoring chance numbers for both teams, and the Statistical Three Stars and Goats, follow us after the jump…
March 01 2012 03:44PM
So Andrew Gordon's new teammates decided to jazz up his new stall.
(Photo via Andrew Gordon - twitter)
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March 01 2012 01:42PM
They've broken our hearts, game after game, year after year.
(Photo/graphic courtesy @mhenderson95)
This is the second part of a two-part post where we chronicle and count down the top 10 Canuck Killers active in the NHL today. Read part one here.
The term "Canucks Killer" has been around for many years and Canucks fans are well aware of what it means. There's just a few players out there, who always seem to go for the jugular when they face Vancouver's club. A "Canuck Killer" scores frequently, tallies key disheartening goals, or just racks up points game after game. When you see a Canucks Killer, you know it. He's the player who can turn any Canucks fan briefly turn into Marlon Brando from Apocalypse Now, desperately whispering "the horror, the horror" at their television set.
I decided to track them all down, quantify them, rank them and share them all with you, because Canucks fans don't have enough to stress out about these days. Let's take a look at which active NHLers consistently take the Canucks to task.
March 01 2012 11:39AM
The St. Louis Blues HATE goal scoring.
For the Canucks tonight, all they need is LOVE.
(Image courtesy The Beatles/thebeatles.com)
Game Day Recon: Game #65 - Blues @ Canucks
Everyone loves goal scoring in the NHL, right? You always hear that a 6-5 game is much more exciting than a 1-0 game. Heck, even Gary Bettman and the league altered the rules of the game coming out of the lockout to increase scoring, because fans love goals. So goal scoring equals love in the NHL.
The Blue Meanies hated love. And the St. Louis Blues (meanies) HATE goal scoring. Tonight, the Vancouver Canucks have a small challenge ahead of them: Become the Beatles.
March 01 2012 08:43AM
A few months ago, I analyzed an interesting draft strategy employed by Mike Gillis – selecting one goaltender per draft year, usually in the mid-to-late rounds. One of the goalies I mentioned, Joe Cannata, is having a fantastic season in the NCAA for the Merrimack Warriors. Cannata was selected 173rd overall back in 2009, and he is currently in his fourth year with the Warriors. Through 31 games this season, he has compiled a 15-9-7 record with a 2.13 goals-against-average and a .926 save percentage.
He’s likely to join the Chicago Wolves next season, likely in a backup goaltender capacity, depending on how he plays and how the Cory Schneider situation unfolds.
Since we don’t hear much (or anything) about most of the Canucks college prospects, I consulted an expert on Merrimack hockey for a firsthand take on Cannata. Mike McMahon is the author of the Mack Report, a website covering all things Merrimack hockey. McMahon can also be found on Twitter (@MikeMcMahonET). Mike had some great insights to offer me, including a Cam Ward comparison, and what we can expect from Cannata for the next few years as he adjusts to the professional game.