October 15 2014 05:00PM
During the 2013-2014 season, the Vancouver Canucks’ goalie depth chart was pretty clear cut: Roberto Luongo was the starter, as all the previous drama was now behind him; Eddie Lack was the backup though soon would want to be a starter somewhere; and newly signed Joacim Eriksson was coming from Sweden to continue development in the AHL. In the Canucks and Comets systems there was also Joe Cannata and Matthieu Corbeil signed, but they were never going to be much more than ECHL starters (Corbeil was bounced around 4 teams, effectively cut from each) and AHL backups.
That all changed the day John Torterella decided to play Lack in the Heritage Classic, citing that the Senators had been scouting Luongo and he wanted to throw a curve-ball at the Senators. He’s never blatantly said it but, Luongo wanted to play it that game, and after years of abuse from the fans, the media and the team, this was the straw to break the camel’s back.
Luongo was shipped out, and in return came back young Jacob Markstrom as part of a package. Not feeling confident with two young goalies to start the 2014-2015 season the new Vancouver management signed veteran goaltender in Ryan Miller. This whole dynamic of 5 goaltenders in the system (with a sixth still developing in the NCAA) is now going to start a new goalie controversy with two goalies fighting for the number one position. I am not talking about one in Vancouver, but rather one in Utica.
Read past the jump for a breakdown of the Utica Comets goaltender situation.
October 15 2014 03:07PM
I happened to spend some time in the emergency room last week for my ongoing health battles. (No need to get alarmed, everything is for the most part under control.) I was admitted for the better part of two days and I started to suffer from extreme boredom. So I did what any other crazy patient would do, which is whip out their phone and start looking up things. Now, don’t tell them I was on it though since I probably screwed up the I.V. thing I was hooked up to, but I digress.
The NHL season had been in full swing for a couple days at this point. Also by this point I had started to hear the nastiness of comments coming from almost every disgruntled fanbase in the league. It wasn’t just normal trash talk towards each other but it was directed to THEIR OWN TEAMS. Read past the jump!
October 15 2014 10:00AM
Welcome to a new feature here on Canucks Army and all sites on the Nation Network: What Would You Do Wednesday, where we put you, yes YOU, in charge of your own imaginary Vancouver Canucks. We'll present you with a different scenario each week, and you tell us how you'd solve it in the comments section below. Give props to the answers you do like and trash the ones you don't. Easy! So let's get started:
October 14 2014 06:45PM
In many ways, Chris Tanev was found money for the Vancouver Canucks. You all know his story by now: undersized and playing in the OPJHL in his draft year, Tanev went undrafted, but was signed as a free agent by Mike Gillis out of the Rochester Institute of Technology. Tanev made the jump to the NHL in his first pro season, quickly cementing himself as a full-time NHL regular by the time he finished his sophomore NHL year.
Now 24, Tanev has become a key contributor to the Vancouver blueline, handling the toughest minutes of any Canucks defender last season under John Tortorella. He was re-signed to a one-year deal this past offseason and is surely looking to earn himself a nice long-term deal with the Canucks or elsewhere. Will he be able to keep improving on a solid 2013-2014? Read past the jump.
October 14 2014 02:35PM
Obscenely dedicated former hockey stats blogger and current mystery team employee Corey Sznajder (@shutdownline) undertook a gargantuan project - called the "All Three Zones project" - this past summer, wherein he tracked zone-entries and exits (and zone-entry defense) for every game played by all 30 NHL teams last season. Though Sznajder is now a private in-house employee for a shady corporate entity, he's still making the results of his tracking project public (to those who helped crowdfund the project).
The ShutdownLine data isn't quite complete yet, but it's close, and luckily one of the teams he's tracked in full is the Vancouver Canucks. Let's briefly highlight some of his more interesting findings after the jump.