December 23 2016 10:33PM
There were parts of tonight's game that left the impression the Canucks never left Vancouver after last night's loss.
Take the second period, for example. The Canucks bookended that frame with two near-ten-minute stretches without a shot attempt at even strength. Even their one goal came by accident. Unless, of course, you think Nikita Tryamkin practiced that Snooker shot goal off the Flames defender and over a confused Brian Elliott's head. Colour me skeptical.
That lead, tenuous as it was, didn't last long into the Canucks' listless second frame. It took the Flames less than three minutes to draw even and pulled away 3-1 by the second intermission. Matthew Tkachuk put the icing on the cake with an empty net goal to secure the 4-1 victory for the Flames.
Jacob Markstrom stopped 33 of the Flames' 36 shots for the Canucks. Brian Elliott stopped 13 of the Canucks' 14 shots.
December 23 2016 03:00PM
Photo Credit: Sergei Belski - USA TODAY Sports
The Canucks never had serious interest in taking Matthew Tkachuk with the fifth overall selection in last year's draft. It was a two-horse race between Pierre-Luc Dubois and Olli Juolevi. When all was said and done, fate forced their hand, and they plucked the Finnish blue liner with their first pick.
For some, that was an egregious misstep. Tkachuk's counting stats were in line with what we'd expect from a first overall selection and he'd played a starring role on the CHL's top line with the London Knights. What's not to like?
I counted myself among those less convinced, though. Whereas the final consolidated 2016 Draft rankings had Tkachuk as the fourth best player available, I had him tenth on my board. Tkachuk, taken sixth overall by the Calgary Flames, has six goals and is playing on the Flames first line. These are early returns in a small sample, but I think we're at a point where I have to take the proverbial 'L' on this one.
December 23 2016 12:54PM
It's that time of the year, when Santa Claus goes down all the chimneys and delivers goodies to all the girls and boys. Many will remember the days when you would wake up, go downstairs and see the new hockey jersey sitting under the tree. Every hockey fan has a couple that they wish they could have, so which one's would be on your list this year? I asked our writers, and our readers!
These were their responses.
December 23 2016 11:00AM
Photo Credit: Anne-Marie Sorvin - USA TODAY Sports
Quick turn around and the Canucks are in Calgary to play the Flames this evening. They probably won't even book a hotel today, just win and go home. Jannik Hansen stayed in Vancouver after taking a pretty ugly knee on knee hit against the Jets. Anton Rodin is making his much anticipated Canucks return. The Flames haven't played since Tuesday, so they've been looking for some game action.
The Canucks might be willing to live up to that type of play.
December 23 2016 09:00AM
The winter break is quickly approaching and the Canucks may currently be 27th in the NHL, but they are leading the league in holiday cheer! Brandon Sutter is apologizing for his poor play, Troy Stecher and Brendan Gaunce are making kids smile, and Luca Sbisa is being a good boy.