February 07 2017 03:00PM
Photo Credit: Lindsay A. Mogle / Utica Comets
It feels like every time I gear up to write about the Comets, I'm talking about either a prolonged winning streak, or a prolonged losing streak. This is just about the streakiest I have ever seen a team play. After winning seven of nine, and then losing nine straight, and the winning eight of nine, the Comets have now lost four in a row. If they stick to the pattern, it looks like they're in for a rough week. It doesn't help that this coming week will be their busiest of the season to date - though at least they'll be getting Brendan Gaunce back.
But before we look ahead, let's look back at the weeks than were.
February 06 2017 05:06PM
Here's a late Monday edition of the complete Canucks schedule for the week of February 6th to 12th. The Canucks play a whopping four games this week, all on the road, as they try to salvage their playoff hopes. If you've already given up on them, there are plenty of prospets to watch, including Adam Gaudette who will play four times this week, including at least once on TV.
Come check out the full schedule to see what other fun stuff is on the docket.
February 03 2017 05:00PM
We've counted down our picks for the Vancouver Canuck's top 20 prospects, from Michael Carcone to Brock Boeser. Before I reveal the individual lists and drop a final summary of the rankings, I thought you might be interested to see how the reader poll results turned out.
So today, we'll check out where our readers, and other internet respondents, ranked the Canucks prospects, as well as how you answered other questions pertaining to the Canucks prospect pool.
February 02 2017 03:00PM
Any of you that followed me during my most recent stint on Twitter will know that a have a particularly strong affinity for Nico Hischier, one that I was particularly vocal about during the World Junior Championships, when he basically single-handedly scared the pants off the Americans in the quarter finals. Hischier, who started the year outside the top ten by many (and in 10th by my early top ten), was already a consensus top five pick at this point and was only heading up (he's now provided a reasonable challenge for first overall).
Meanwhile, the Canucks heading into the Christmas break (and thus the start of the World Junior tournament) were undoubtedly one of the league's worst teams, and their position in the standings showed it. They sat in 27th place at Christmas, and even with a couple of early wins out of the Christmas break, hope was allowed to creep in and create draw a line between the Canucks' terrible record, their eventual draft position, and this shiny young Swiss centre that was setting the WJC on fire.
As a rule, the Canucks aren't usually allowed to have nice things, with a few exceptions. In nearly 50 years, they have never captured the first overall pick - a trend that started with a spinning wheel back in 1970. So rather than hoping for number one, hoping for a top two or three selection seemed like a safer bet for a Vancouver fan, right? This could really happen!
It was then that my bubble was burst by the mention of one name: Michael Rasmussen.
February 01 2017 01:33PM
Photo Credit: Kelvin Kuo/USA TODAY SPORTS
The emergence of several players after Mike Gillis was fired, including Bo Horvat, Ben Hutton, and Brendan Gaunce, and even strong AHL showings from Jordan Subban, Alex Grenier, and Joe LaBate have served to dull the pain from a decade of poor results during the Ron Delorme era, the pinnacle of which coincided with Gillis’ reign as GM.
A short time ago, Anton Rodin made his debut with the Vancouver Canucks, and in doing so he was the eighth Mike Gillis-drafted player to make his NHL debut after Gillis was fired. The addition of Rodin and core players like Horvat and Hutton to the Canucks lineup make Gillis’ draft record look vastly better than it was, and some have speculated recently that his drafting might be better than we thought.
Well, that’s not really the case. Vancouver’s draft history over the last fifteen years has been so abysmal that anything looks good. Even with these new young players brightening the ranks, Gillis’ draft record is still not good. And I have evidence.