March 27 2012 12:36AM
Not quite sure what happened here, but the crowd sure liked it.
(Photo by Jeff Vinnick/NHLI via Getty Images)
The Canucks, who play in a city generally well disposed towards the monarchy, toppled the Kings this evening in a hard-fought if offensively challenged affair. The only goal was scored within the first five minutes of puck drop, and came off of the stick of Manny Malhotra, who rarely so much as sniffs the offensive end, for his seventh tally of the year.
Though it was a low-event game that sagged in the second period, it was tightly contested and fraught with intensity. Usually games with so few scoring chances (there were 23 total in the game) bore me, but from my vantage point tonight's game was an excellent tight-checking confection, infused with a helping of playoff-like intensity.
A thorough recap, chance data and the statistical three stars after the jump!
March 26 2012 03:31PM
Mike Burnstein got Keslurked. Pass it to Bulis has more.
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March 26 2012 11:36AM
Fresh of their final extended roadtrip of the regular season, the Canucks will renew acquaintances with the the new-look Los Angeles Kings on national television tonight in Vancouver. The Kings are a tough team, and while they've struggled offensively this season, they absolutely dominate possession and have received superb goaltending from Jonathan Quick. The combination makes the Kings nigh impossible to score on.
The Kings are currently holding down eighth spot in the West, but are only a single point out of third place in the conference. If the Kings fail to win their division (though, I suspect they will figure out a way to win it) they'll be a nightmare first round opponent for either of the top-two seeds. Tonight's game is a potential playoff preview against a physical team that has punched the Canucks squarely in the mouth several times this season, and have spoken openly about their animosity for the Canucks players. Sounds pretty fun!
Click past the jump for a more thorough recap and the underlying numbers!
March 24 2012 09:43AM
In the wake of Duncan Keith's five game "punishment" I expect we'll see a fired up Vancouver squad this evening, which should help the team match the intensity level a bubble team like the Avalanche should bring tonight. The Avalanche are a sneaky good team, they have a legitimate "shut-down" pair in O'Byrne and Hejda, and Erik Johnson has gone from being an over-rated underachiever last season, to being an under-rated game-changer this season.
Up front the Avalanche forwards are quality, Landeskog is a two-way beast and so is O'Riley. Stasny brings some elite passing skill, and the likes of Jamie McGinn and Steve Downie have made the Avalanche appreciably more imposing to play against.
That said, they don't boast the overall depth and team quality that the Canucks do. If we're lucky, we'll get some vintage fall of 2009 Henrik Sedin. I'm hoping he'll play angry, become a big green Hulk-like playmaking machine and carry the Canucks to victory tonight.
I'm busy today so the game preview will just include underlying numbers and the three keys to the game, so click past the jump for more.
March 23 2012 12:16AM
Bieksa celebrates his game-winning goal with Henrik Sedin during Thursday night's game in Dallas.
(Photo by Glenn James/NHLI via Getty Images)
The Canucks have been reeling of late, both generally and against the Dallas Stars, who have earned the win over Vancouver's club in the team's last two meetings. Considering the Canucks lost their leading goal scorer to a (likely) concussion, and were facing the Pacific Division Leader on the second night of road back-to-backs - they put in a solid effort, handily controlling the game while holding the lead throughout.
A more detailed recap, chance data and the statistical three stars and goats after the jump.