January 10 2014 11:53PM
You'll tell your grandchildren about the time these two Canuck legends went at it.
The following blurb was from the preview I put together in advance of Friday night's game:
"One final thing before we get to the underlying numbers: I'm calling a Canucks win tonight. I wouldn't put any money on it, but them finally bucking the trend and winning this one lines up perfectly with their slogan this season.. when you think they'll zig, they actually zag. It makes no sense for them to beat the Blues tonight, which is why I totally see them doing just that. Classic."
I know that at least a handful of the people on my timeline shared these particular sentiments with me prior to the game, so I'm hardly a prophet. Especially since, while I legitimately thought that the Canucks would beat the Blues - which they wound up doing by a 2-1 score - I'd be lying if I told you I expected Zac Dalpe to score a goal, and spend the majority of the night playing with the Sedins. Did that happen? Of course it did!
Read on past the jump for the recap.
January 10 2014 03:33PM
Sup? [GIF via Dan McQuade]
We're back with the 2nd episode of the "Log Off Podcast" in which we discuss hockey ad nauseam until it's time for us to, well, log off. Last time you heard from us was on Monday, when we spent the entirety of the show previewing what we thought Team Canada's roster would look like.
Well, with a few days to let it all sink in and marinate, we now feel it's a good time to take a quick look at who was "snubbed", and what kinds of adjustments we'd make. In case you're looking for a cynical take on the team, then feel free to skip past the first 5 or 6 minutes.. because we seemed to share a fairly positive outlook on the result, all things considered.
After that, we hopped around all over the NHL, talking about the mess that's taking place in Winnipeg right now (spurred by the news that Dustin Byfuglien will be moving back to forward, despite a largely successful run as a blueliner over the past few seasons), the dry spell in Vancouver (and their weird season to-date), and the complete and utter tire fire in Toronto (which'll hopefully conclude with Randy Carlyle being shot into outer space)..
Click past the jump to stream the podcast!
January 10 2014 02:20PM
The Vancouver Canucks are 0-2-3 in their past 5 games, and have seen their possession numbers crater as the laundry list of injuries continues to take a toll. Meanwhile, their opponent on Friday night, the St.Louis Blues, are 9-0-1 in their past 10 games (and have outscored those opponents by a 46-17 margin).
So things don't exactly look great heading into this one, but I will remind you of the October 25th meeting between these two teams when the Canucks came out on top despite seemingly being in for a world of hurt heading into the contest. And at least this time it's the Blues playing in the 2nd of a back-to-back, while the Canucks have been sitting at home waiting for them. Plus with Brian Elliott in net ANYTHING IS POSSSSIBLLLEEEEEEE!!!
Also, former Canucks Max Lapierre and Derek Roy make their return to the scene of the crime. Let's just say that I don't think they'll be getting a Manny Malhotra-type tribute video. I mean, the team would probably give Roy a video if they could find any footage of him in a Canucks uniform during a meaningful game..
January 09 2014 11:25AM
Image via Jeff Gross / Getty Images
After a wildly successful month of December in the Win/Loss column, January has been far less forgiving to the Canucks thus far. They're 0-2-3 in their past 5, and have already given up just 5 fewer goals in January than they did in the entire previous month. The thing about winning is that, while obviously being the ultimate goal, it can also prove to be somewhat of a fool's gold by thinly veiling larger underlying issues.
While getting the two points from a game is nice, ideally you'd like to do it in a way that'll lend itself to future success. A blind squirrel finds a nut once in a while, a broken clock is right twice a day, and hockey teams run into stretches of play where fortunate bounces string together a winning streak. It's not something you should bank on, though. Just ask the '11-'12 Minnesota Wild, and the Randy Carlyle Era Toronto Maple Leafs.
This is why we constantly preach the importance of puck possession on this platform; while it should make intuitive sense that having the puck more often than your opponent is a good thing, some people still choose to overlook its importance, despite ample evidence proving that its the best predictor we have for future success.
All of which brings us to the recent woes for the Vancouver Canucks; they've failed to register a win over the past 5 games now, and there are some worrying trends. Their ability to drive play has been sinking faster than Alex Burrows' bid for Sochi. Anyways, this is something I've been following this for a while, and I figured that with an extra day off between games this was as good a time as any to explore the negative trend further.
January 06 2014 04:00PM
It was during Saturday night's evisceration at the hands of the Los Angeles Kings that more than just a regular season game was lost by the Vancouver Canucks. Early in the 3rd period, Dustin Brown acrobatically spun into Roberto Luongo following his rebound of a Justin Williams shot, acquainting his right skate with the goaltender's head. Luongo stayed down for a while, and got looked at by the team's trainers, but was eventually deemed OK to stay in the game.
While he went on to surrender a goal later on in a losing effort, there was nothing in his movement or play that struck me as glaringly awkward. I personally didn't really think twice of the incident after the fact - other than about how big of a scumbag Brown is, of course - but then news broke on Sunday that he was unable to dress as Eddie Lack's backup against the Ducks (enter, Rob Laurie). There were rumblings that it was a high-ankle sprain which was keeping him out, and Mike Gillis did nothing to throw water on the fire.
It sounds as if a full-blown crisis may've been averted, however. While we've yet to hear any definitive news from the team regarding the extent of the injury, James Duthie is reporting some good news for Luongo, the Canucks, and Team Canada. I assume that Duthie wouldn't be tweeting this without having spoken to someone in the know, so it appears that you can all finally exhale..