-Screencap from Twitter dot com’s Mike Martigagno
Seems like the mantra in Vancouver will be to “win big, or not at all”. John Tortorella (pictured above, a fiery, dangerous John Tortorella) earned his first win as the Vancouver Canucks’ bench boss Saturday night as the Canucks pulled out a 6-2 game from their rumps against Edmonton. The Oilers are now 0-2 to start the season and perhaps reeling a little without top two centremen Ryan Nugent-Hopkins and Sam Gagner.
Take a time machine back to those halcyon days of 2008 to 2011, when Henrik and Daniel Sedin would frequently ravage the Oilers. Daniel scored a goal and added an assist. Henrik had three assists. Everything was mostly working, despite a soft goal two minutes in by Jeff Petry that had a real “oh, Luongo, here we go again” feel to it. The Canucks struck back with a shorthanded goal by Brad Richardson just 1:44 later, and twice more before the period was out.
6-2 final. And we got that face from Torts.
Tell you the truth, I wasn’t really watching this one, sort of coasting in and out of the Oakland-Detroit Game 2 classic that was on the other channel, because the game was no longer in doubt by the midway point of the second.
I did see this, which was some good old fashioned Wizardous Sedinerie:
I missed this, which was also good old fashioned Wizardous Sedinerie:
The game also got chippy after Ryan Kesler fought Will Acton for some reason at the end of the first. The first period somehow ended with the above image, of Tortorella yelling obscenities at the Oilers bench.
Dan Hamhuis scored a sinker on Devan Dubnyk, who has not started his season in an excellent manner. Hamhuis goal looked a bit like a Jacob Trouba sinker that eluded Dubnyk in the opener. Dubnyk is still a pretty good goaltender but clearly wasn’t on form Saturday and had to be relieved by Jason LaBarbera, of all people.
There’s a lot to be encouraged about if you’re a Canucks fan after this one. After taking that special team pounding against San Jose on Thursday, the Canucks out-shot the Oilers 17-5 in man-advantage situations, capitalizing on the six attempts the Oilers gave them. While going 1-for-6 on the powerplay isn’t going to scare anybody anytime soon, they won’t keep going 1-for-6 if they continue to fire 15 shots in 10:52 of 5-on-4 time, which is (do the math) well over 60 shots for per 60 minutes. They appeared to get a lot of real good opportunities in tight and in open areas, exploiting the weak parts of the Oilers’ D.
Edmonton blocked 19 shots to Vancouver’s 10 and out-hit the Canucks 38-22. That’s just grit AND jam right there.
Also, for those of you that follow us on Twitter, you may know that Dimitri and I have a season-long running bet on the number of goals Jason Garrison will score this season. I have the under at 14.5. Garrison scored an empty-net goal by rattling the puck around the glass behind his own net, and then taking a freak hop off a stanchion and rolling into the friggin’ net. Dallas Eakins likes to pull his goalies early because math told him to or something, but if his decisions are going to negatively impact my gambling decisions like that I just can’t get behind them.