I love World Champian Brad Marchand.
He makes watching the games so much fun.
Don’t you guys love Brad Marchand? I bet you guys love Brad Marchand. I know the Canucks love Marchand, to the tune of a 6-2 asskicking that capped off a successful home stand which saw Vancouver run their winning streak to 7 games. It was a good, cathartic night for all Canucks players and fans involved. Here’s the rundown of what happened:
The first period was fairly low-event, despite its fair share of intensity. After a Ryan Kesler attempt was foiled by a hard Jarome Iginla bodycheck, Kesler decided he was having none of the Bruins’ crap and dropped the gloves with the ex-Flame captain. Although the Canucks account scored the fight a little differently than I did, Iginla still came out the worse for wear and had to leave for the Bruins dressing room, only to miraculously return in the 2nd period.
Play was fairly even in the first period, as the Canucks carried the Corsi advantage 20-18, but trailed in Fenwicks at 11-13. A Yannick Weber slapper snuck through Tuukka Rask’s five hole, but it was cleared out of the crease by Kevan Miller, while Roberto Luongo thwarted a Brad Marchand and Patrice Bergeron chance. It looked like it was going to be a scoreless 1st, until Jannik Hansen threw a curveball that would make Justin Verlander proud:
That shot bent harder than Jarome Iginla’s finger did, and good lord his finger looked bad (in my notes, I have "ah holy shit fuck that finger" written down as my initial reaction. So, there ya go). Shockingly, Iginla was back on the ice to start the second period becase, well, hockey players.
The Bruins looked motivated by their teammate’s triumphant return, coming out quickly and outshooting Vancouver 5-0 before Reilly Smith shoveled home a backhand to tie the game at 1-1. Then, mt. Torts finally erupted. He called a timeout immediately after the Bruins goal and tore into the Canucks. That seemed to snap Vancouver back to attention, as they upped their play shortly thereafter.
First, David Booth showed the wheels of a $4.25 million hockey player, snapping a shot over Tuukka Rask’s glove to restore the 1-goal lead:
Then, Mike Santorelli happened. He cut hard to the front of the Bruins net getting two scoring chances, then shrugged off David Krejci to shovel another shot on goal before Chris Higgins finally stuffed a rebound home:
Then the floodgates opened at the start of the 3rd period. First, Yannick Weber scored the first goal of his Canucks career on a setup from the Sedins:
Shortly thereafter, Jarome Iginla took a roughing penalty in an altercation with Dan Hamhuis, and Henrik Sedin scored on the ensuing powerplay:
And to cap the night off, Chris Tanev capitalized on a shorthanded 2-on-1 on a nice pass from Mike Santorelli to bring the score to 6-1 for the home side:
Reilly Smith added his 2nd of the game in garbage time, but it made no difference. The Canucks ran out the clock in a 6-2 blowout win to bring their league-best winning streak to 7 games.
Those are some beautiful score effects, ladies and gentlemen. The Fenwick chart is a bit deceptive as the Bruins blocked enough shots early to have the edge in Fenwicks, but they trailed in Corsis until Vancouver went up by a couple of goals. Then score effects kicked in, Tuukka Rask and Ochocinco Johnson couldn’t stop a beachball, and a blowout ensued. Fun times.
One thing I found interesting was that Claude Julien was hard-matching Zdeno Chara against the Sedins for the better part of two periods. Over that time, Chara held Henrik to an 18.2% Corsi%. As soon as Julien moved away from that matchup in the 2nd period, Henrik went on a 100% Corsi% run that culminated in the Yannick Weber goal in the early 3rd. Chara is pretty good.
In all, the possession numbers looked ugly, as Vancouver was out-attempted 69-40 for the balance of the game. Score-tied situations look much better though, as Vancouver held an 18-17 edge early on. Despite a 36.7% Corsi%, Vancouver was pretty clearly the better team when the game was still in reach.
Oh, and Roberto Luongo stopped 38 of 40 shots to bring his save percentage up to 0.921 on the season. Cory Schneider? He’s at 0.917. Maybe this Luongo guy is pretty good after all.
And one more nugget about Canucks Army darling Chris Tanev:
Chris Tanev is now over 88 minutes of 4-on-5 icetime this season. Vancouver’s goal differential in those 88 minutes? +1.
— Thomas Drance (@ThomasDrance) December 15, 2013
That’s pretty decent.
Big win. Now let us all gather the official flipping car, put aside for us by a very progressive Vancouver Police Department.
— Pass it to Bulis (@passittobulis) December 15, 2013
Thanks to those filthy heathens at Pass it to Bulis for that gem. Next game is Tuesday at 5:00 against Minnesota.