June 07 2015 01:52PM
I'm not particularly good with dates or anniversaries, so it comes as no surprise that I completely missed the one year anniversary of Jim Benning's tenure with the Canucks. And what's a better way to celebrate one year together than to pick it apart in excruciating detail?
Let's start with the trades Benning made in his first twelve months at the helm of the Canucks.
June 06 2015 08:02PM
We knew going in to tonight that the Manchester Monarchs were the toughest test that the Utica Comets could possibly face this post season. Los Angeles' farm team had breezed through their bracket, dispatching their first two opponents in five games each before sweeping Hartford in the 3rd round. Much like their parent club, they are a dominant possession team that gives up next to nothing in terms of shots or chances.
Unlike the Kings though, Manchester possesses the most dominant offensive trio in the AHL, with Jordan Weal, Brian O'Neill, and Michael Mersch having lit up the playoffs so far. Jacob Markstrom did his best to hold the Comets in the game tonight, but the Monarchs attack was just too much in the end, as they were able to dispose of Utica 3-2 in overtime of game 1.
Join us after the jump to see what went down.
June 06 2015 01:08PM
Photo Courtesy: @TheAHL
The Utica Comets have had great success this post-season, having dominated their way to the Calder Cup finals for the third time in Vancouver Canucks AHL affiliate history and the first time for the Comets franchise. Fans across upstate New York (minus Syracuse) are excited, and even in Vancouver people are realizing the Canucks have an AHL team!
With the third round over, the Comets have been having success in each round. Their special teams have not been performing as well as one would hope, but thanks to excellent play from retooled goaltender Jacob Markstrom, and offence from players like Alex Grenier, Sven Baerschi and Cal O’Reilly, the Comets continue to have success.
In the final series, the Comets are going to face the LA Kings' affiliate who play in Boston Bruins country: the Manchester Monarchs. This is probably the only team the Comets did not want to play against. It’s going to be a difficult series, but let’s see how these two teams match up.
June 05 2015 05:51PM
Twitter was abuzz with some good old fashioned prospecting this morning, as The Godfather himself Bob McKenzie unveiled his consensus top-75 draft rankings for this month's upcoming entry draft (you can click here to view McKenzie's top-75 as well as player profiles from Craig Button). McKenzie's rankings carry a lot of weight because they're not actually his rankings per se, but rather an industry survey of a variety of scouts that work for NHL teams.
McKenzie's rankings are also generally the most accurate prognosticator of the first round, meaning he's usually bang-on in terms of the range of picks a guy will be selected in. With that in mind, let's take a look at the five players who surround Vancouver's 23rd overall selection to see what should be on the board.
June 05 2015 12:18PM
If you've been following along at Canucks Army (or our friends at Jets Nation) you may have noticed a number of posts recently on two new metrics we've developed to help assess prospect development called Prospect Cohort Success % (PCS%) and PCS points per game (PCS p/GM). For primer on these new stats see the piece Josh Weissbock published recently.
The PCS system finds the closest matches for a particular player in terms of age, league, height, and points, then calculates the percentage of that player's peers who play over 200 NHL games (PCS%) and the NHL points per game of those peers who successfully made the NHL (PCS p/GM). Think of PCS% as a metric to estimate the risk a prospect may or may not become an NHL regular, while PCS p/GM gives you a sense as to what the players potential may be if they make it.
Last week, I profiled the Canucks top forward prospects, so now I'll look at the top prospects on defense.