December 11 2013 01:20PM
The Vancouver Canucks have won six of their last seven games, they boast the league's best penalty-kill, and their controversial bench boss has been even keeled (mostly) while earning praise for his handling of the media. The John Tortorella era is off to about as good a start as anyone could've reasonably expected, well, except for the nihilist disaster fetishists waiting impatiently for Tortorella to go Vesuvius on the local press.
It has been a redemptive fall for Tortorella in some ways, especially with his old team the New York Rangers already in the "players only meeting" stage. If the Canucks as a whole are benefitting from the impact of a coaching change, and they seem to be, then we figured it might be worth our time to take a closer look at three players on Vancouver's roster who have particularly benefited from the Tortorella hire.
December 11 2013 12:25PM
It's been another successful stretch of games for the Vancouver Giants, as they went 3-1-1-0 over their past 5 games, but saw an 11-game point streak come to an end at the hands of the division rival Victoria Royals. This run of success has vaulted the Giants into a tie for 7th in the WHL's Western Conference with Eric Comrie and the Tri-City Americans. Their total of 37 points would also put them 5th in the East, and represents an 8 point gap between them and the final playoff spot.
The news gets better too, as we now have some #fancystats that seem to indicate that the Giants are for real.
December 09 2013 11:06PM
Coming into this game against the Carolina Hurricanes, the Canucks had a 'Läck" of wins in either regulation or overtime when they scored two or fewer goals. Fans also had a 'Läck' of trust in the Canucks when they were ahead by one goal in the third. Starting goalie Edward Läck also had a 'Läck' of shutouts in his NHL career, but by the end of the game, it was the Carolina Hurricanes who found that they had a 'Läck' of goals scored, as the Canucks won 2-0.
It wasn't without drama. For instance, at the start of the third period, I had changed the channel and misplaced my remote control. The Canucks got a goal in the first period from one unlikely source, and then an empty-net goal to seal the deal with 74 seconds left on the clock. While Roberto Luongo dropped a shutout a night earlier against Colorado with seven seconds left, Carolina didn't register any late attempts at net to break Läck's perfect game.
December 09 2013 02:35PM
The easy thing to do would be to copy and paste our gameday thread from the last game against Carolina. Has much changed between the Carolina Hurricanes and the Carolina Hurricanes of eight days ago? No. Unfortunately, that was a Sunday matinee game and neither Dimitri nor I got up on time to write a game thread, so it looks like I'll actually have to go through media guides to figure out who the heck is on this damn team.
First things first: the Hurricanes, aesthetically, made an excellent sweater change this summer. Particularly for the road jerseys. They ditched the red piping and the hurricane flag striping on the tail of the jersey and went back to a more traditional design, with a thick red shoulder yoke that eats up the name plate and a sharp, simplified striping pattern. I'm not a huge fan of the home jerseys because they look so darn red, but the road jerseys are excellent with the black accents.
Hey, screw you. I cheer for teams based on what they wear.
December 09 2013 12:25PM
In my first post on zone entries, I went over the basics of this new stat, why it's important, and how the Canucks have been performing as a team this year. 20 games have passed since then and we'll look at what has changed since then and who has been performing the best in the neutral zone for Vancouver.