Wolves Drop Stinker, Lose 3-2 to Peoria

Dimitri Filipovic
November 17 2012 09:40PM

Wolves skaters check out one of the few noteworthy moments - a Guillaume Desbiens fight - on the jumbotron.

Anyone that knows me will tell you all about how fond I am of word play, and let me tell you, the title above was not accidental. There's some things that you just can't unsee, and unfortunately, I get the feeling that this Saturday night tilt between the Wolves and the Peoria Rivermen is one of them.

After two lackluster periods, there seemed to be a potentially exciting finish to the game brewing, as the result was still in question. Those sentiments were quickly erased once the Rivermen locked the game down after netting the go-ahead goal with roughly 10 minutes left.

The Wolves - who lost to this same Peoria team by a 3-2 score in overtime last night - lost for the first time in regulation at the Allstate Arena. As you can tell, I won't sugarcoat things; this game was incredibly choppy, and poorly played all the way around. But some things did happen, and I'll do my best to fill you in on them.

Read Past the Jump for Notes on the Game.

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Using a Pit Stop To Catch Up With Billy Sweatt

Dimitri Filipovic
November 16 2012 10:16AM

Billy Sweatt has wheels, on wheels, on wheels.

Having watched my share of Chicago Wolves games this season, the main takeaway for me has been the speed that the team plays the game with. They are quite impressive in their ability to counter-attack, getting the play going in the right direction before the opposition knows what hit them. 

The best of the bunch in that regard is Billy Sweatt, who bears a remarkable set of wheels. There have been numerous occasions when he has created a scoring opportunity for either himself or his team, by simply outskating the opposing defenders. He has spent a big chunk of the season next to Jordan Schroeder, whom he has developed a good rapport with dating back to their time together last year.

With the Wolves having a full week off - and Billy having time to kill as his tires get changed - I figured I'd check in with him. In case you had forgotten and would like to refresh your memory, or simply had a plethora of better things to do with your summer and missed it, I chatted with Billy for the first time back in July. Don't worry, the following chat is completely new material.

Read Past the Jump to See What Billy Sweatt Has to Say This Time Around.

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The Podcast That Never Was; With Daniel Wagner

Dimitri Filipovic
November 13 2012 01:13PM


Sometimes, despite the best of intentions, things just don't work out. Those words have never rang truer to me than right now. On Saturday night, I was in Abbotsford to see the Heat take on the visiting Edmonton Oilers Oklahoma City Barons. Another person who happened to be in attendance was Daniel Wagner, who fancies himself a connoisseur in the art of 'giving Bulis'.

We decided to record a podcast in the media lounge during the second intermission. It was busy, and rather loud, but I figured that this was what people who live life on the edge do. So we went ahead with it. The result was a rather unforgettable amount of fun for Daniel and I, and an audio track that was a jumbled mess. It turns out that there's a valid reason why people usually record in studios designated for podcasting.

But I'm not one to go quietly into the night. And I certainly won't pretend that this never happened. So instead, I've gone ahead and transcribed the discussion for you. In case you were wondering, Daniel's voice is as sweet as his writing is eloquent. I will make sure to have him on again in the near future, to make amends. 

Read Past the Jump Once You Have Finally Stopped Shaking Your Head.

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Chris Higgins Doesn't Get Mainstream Attention, But He Should

Dimitri Filipovic
November 13 2012 07:27AM

A past-his-prime Scott Gomez. Tom Pyatt. Michael Busto. An over-the-hill Olli Jokinen. Brandon Prust. Evan Oberg. A third round draft pick. Those are all of the assets that Chris Higgins was traded for over the span of two years, as he transitioned from being a former lottery pick to a journeyman who couldn't find a place to stick. 

As the story goes, the Canucks weren't even all that interested in Higgins in February of 2011, when they acquired him from the Panthers at the trade deadline. They had their sights set on another player, but wound up making a deal for Higgins - who was on the shelf with a hand injury at the time - in the final minutes before the deadline in an attempt to bolster themselves on the wing for a long playoff run. 

Once he arrived in Vancouver, Higgins was able to lay claim to something that not many others could: he had called five different cities "home" over the course of the previous 20 months. Since then, he has proven to be an exceptionally valuable commodity for the Canucks, and a darling of the advanced stats community. But still, I feel that there are far too many hockey fans out there who don't appreciate what he brings to the table, and it's time that we change that.

Read Past the Jump for More on Chris Higgins.

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It's Time To Become Familiar With Joe Colborne

Dimitri Filipovic
November 08 2012 09:40AM

With no NHL hockey being played, Canucks fans haven't been left with too many alternatives to consume their time as these dreary Fall days drag on. Sure, there are some big names playing in the KHL - and its legitimacy is being supplemented by the wonderful highlight packages Steve Dangle and Andrey Osadchenko have been doing - but it's just not the same. 

I'm sure you'd prefer to be spending your time looking for suitable trade partners for Keith Ballard on Cap Geek as he's glued to the bench, or making fun of Mason Raymond for displaying the on-ice stability of an intoxicated 16-year old girl. But both of those will have to be put on hold for the time being.

For now, fans of the team will have to settle for two particular forms of entertainment to get by: following the Chicago Wolves as the team's top prospects continue to develop, and playing armchair GM in the anticipation of the inevitable Roberto Luongo deal. We have been covering the Wolves on a regular basis thus far, providing you with game recaps for every contest to-date.

But let's focus on the other topic, which Thomas Drance has wittily coined "Strombabble". In the months since the Canucks bowed out of the playoffs, there has been no shortage of rumours floated around. Unfortunately, there has been nothing definitive and thus, there's still plenty of uncertainty. What we can agree on is that three suitors have separated themselves from the pack - the Leafs, Oilers, and Panthers.

We all know about the big names from each of those teams that we'd like to see in a Canucks uniform, but chances are that Gillis won't be able to pry any of them loose. Instead, we'll spend the next few weeks taking a look at some of the more intriguing players that may actually be available. The name Joe Colborne has popped up in recent weeks, as a potential return for Luongo. But who exactly is Joe Colborne? And should Canucks fans care?

Read Past the Jump for More.

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