Canucks Army Postgame – Thunderstuck

The Canucks traveled down to Tampa Bay for the last game of their road trip to face a surging Tampa Bay Lightning team.  As Rhys wrote about in the Game Day Thread, the Bolts are stocked full of offensively gifted talents and look to be good for a long time in the future, as well as this year.  This game was no easy task for the Canucks and it showed up on the ice, in their underlying numbers, and in their results. 

As the Canucks played last night against the other Florida team and were starting with Ryan Miller in net again, the game didn’t start off in their favour.  Because of their lack of rest we can be like certain ex-Oiler bloggers and chalk this one up to a “schedule loss” however.

Continue past the jump for analysis of this game!

Highlights

Quick Hits

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[Canucks.com Recap] [Willie Desjardins Postgame] [Official Event Summary] [Official Faceoff Report] [War-on-Ice Stat Pack] [NaturalStatTrick Stat Pack]

  • The Canucks were clearly out-classed in this game, partly because of being tired, and partly because the Lightning are a legitimately great team.  The shot totals make the teams seem closer than they actually were in the game with the Canucks posting almost sub-45% Corsi in the first two periods.  In the first 10 minutes of the game, the Canucks only had 1 single shot attempt (a block) and it was not until 14 minutes into the game when the Canucks put their first shot on net.
  • Coming into the game Ben Bishop, goaltender for the Lightning, and Ryan Miller had similar statistics.  Miller did not look too bad in this game given that he was playing in a back-to-back, even making some nice saves in the second.  The end result did not work out for him as he let in 3 goals against, including a soft one off a Brian Boyle one-timer.  You can’t blame Miller for the loss though, as the team only scored one goal late in the third period for him.
  • The Canucks managed to keep the game tied until part way through the second period when Dan Hamhuis and Kevin Bieksa were defending a rush, Bieksa went to play the man (that Hamhuis already had covered) leaving Valtteri Filppula wide open to receive the cross-ice past and finally get the Lightning ahead.  It was an ugly game as he finished a minus-2 with a 42% Corsi.
  • With four minutes left in the game down 3-1 and on the power play, Willie Desjardins pulled Miller to give the Canucks the extra attacker.  I have split feelings on this; it’s good to see Desjardins pull the goalie early, a move that analytics have said is a good idea for years, but on the other hand we’d seen the Canucks on the power play 7 times tonight, including 4-on-3 and 5-on-3, and quite honestly the Canucks looked more dangerous at even strength.  Vancouver should be glad their empty net save-percentage was so high as the Lightning had multiple chances they could not capitalize on.
  • Canucks earned themselves ANOTHER “Too Many Men” penalty in this game – you would think they would learn to count in Medicine Hat.  That or Desjardins should hire The Count as an assistant coach.
  • The lone goal for the Canucks was officially credited to Alex Burrows but Frank Corrado was actively involved in that goal and it’s arguable that he should have earned the credit.  Nice to continue to see him acheive excellent results in the NHL.   He was a team worst though in Corsi Rel tonight at -22.75% with 15:29 minutes of ice time (lowest of all defencemen), and he spent 12 of those minutes with Dan Hamhuis playing against some of the Lightnings weaker forwards, but he bailed the Canucks out a couple of times, pulling pucks out of Ryan Miller’s crease.
  • In the 3 minutes away from Corrado at 5v5, Dan Hamhuis was a +7.21 Corsi Rel.
  • Surprisingly, know who lead the team in possession statistics?  Linden Vey with a +22.28 Corsi Rel, earning himself some 3rd line ice time.  He looks to be settling in on the wing.
  • Playing in the middle-6 with his “trade me, I don’t care” attitude was Zack Kassian with a +0.09 ES Corsi Rel.  On the night he was a -1, had 2 shots and 1 more attempt.
  • Bo Horvat, centring the 4th line, went 4 for 11 in the face-off circle and was a -5.53 ES Corsi Rel.

Conclusion

Next Tuesday, the Canucks will return home to face the Anaheim Mighty Ducks and Ryan Kesler.  The Ducks have been seeing some excellent results this year so far as they are sitting first in the division, but  their results seem largely to be luck driven as they have have been only the 14th best team in Score-Adjusted Corsi.  More recently, over the last 10 games, the Ducks have been demolishing teams seeing them rise to 6th though.  Like always the Canucks need to earn every point they can if they want to meet their goal of just making the playoffs.  With not having earned any points against Tampa they Canucks will want to make sure they don’t drop two games in a row.

  • wojohowitz

    Dont really agree with canucks army assessment.

    What i seen was tampa at their absolute best and rested, the canucks having plenty chances to win/tie this game and blew it on the PP.

    Everytime after a loss i keep reading a story that they were outclassed, or the stats were somehow not indicative of the play. It was a winnable game squandered by an abysmal powerplay.

    Also the to many men people is simply the players screwing up, the coach taps them they are up next and then the players are jumping on to soon or as sportsnet intermission claimed, henrik was lazy getting off.

  • FredTheCaveman

    The Canucks weren’t out classed it was a tight hockey game for 2 periods. Although, I knew it was going to be a long night after they didn’t convert on 4-3 and 5-3…. Every time they had a chance Danny would lose big face offs, then a bunch of passes around the outside trying to get fancy goals.

    The only goal they got was by Corrado driving the net!!! The PP and top line really let the team down tonight. Plenty of chances to get points, but too fancy for their own good.

    Nice game by Corrado. He made a wonderful defensive play with Stamkos streaking down the right boards and drove him into the boards.

    Canucks have a lot of time off then a stretch at home, which will probably decide if they are for real or not. If they can’t win at home then that’s that!

  • Vanoxy

    Salo’s Finnish but I guess Swede reunion makes more sense for the Canucks social media op. He also looks like he’s a thousand years old; Ohlund looks like he could still do some damage though I know he’s the more seriously injured/retired.

    The Canucks looked like a team itching for the break and the PP was once again atrocious — 2 x 5-3’s and 1 x 4-3 and nothing. Once again I can’t imagine how some of this doesn’t come down to coaching — yes the units show zero urgency but they also don’t seem like they have any plan whatsoever. No one is moving, they pass it around the perimeter until someone fumbles it.

    But I’m also seriously unimpressed by the Lightning, playing a tired West Coast team on the 2nd of 2btbs and 4th in 5 nights they generated precious little themselves. Palat and Johnson were the ones who were really standing out and maybe Hedman; Stamkos was (mostly) invisible. I think that’s my biggest surprise through the season how generally mediocre the hockey has been all year. Even the top teams have seemed very inconsistent other than maybe Anaheim, Nashville and St. Louis. There’s a fifteen point spread from 1st to 18th and 6 between 1 and 8 at the allstar break, that’s nuts.

    • Vanoxy

      Yeah, referencing Salo with a “Swede” pun pretty much breaks The First Rule of Fennoscandian Relations.

      I’m surprised he and Öhlund are both in Tampa, in any event.

      • Vanoxy

        I noticed that too. Kind of funny.

        I wouldn’t mind seeing Salo come back for the remainder of the year, if only to see him retire as a Canuck.

        He’s got to be thinking it’s time.

  • Vanoxy

    I have to agree on the Kassian assessment, he seems to have a giant chip on his shoulder like he’s not deserving any criticism. He plays the game with zero enthusiasm and is mostly invisible. Jake V. would put in a better performance,but sadly that won’t happen for awhile. Really he is just taking up a roster spot and I can’t see him being around much longer.

    • Vanoxy

      Last night Kassian just floated around like he didn’t care. There were two times he had a Lightening player in their zone and could have hit him, but peeled off weakly. He also was as weak as can be along the boards trying to clear pucks. Just waving at the puck with his stick

      If that’s his effort…. Trade him over the All Star break before scouts see more of this apathy

  • Vanoxy

    … Pavel Bure, Todd Bertuzzi…

    What ever happened to Lukas Krajicek anyways?

    Why wasn’t Eddy Lack invited to the Swede party?

    The eye test tells me Kassian is terrible in the defensive zone. Maybe its because I watch him more closely than others, but it seems like he fails to make easy clears about five times per game.

    At this point I think he simply doesn’t have the hockey brain to be a lasting NHL player, because currently his offensive game isn’t good enough for a top six spot, but his defensive game isn’t good enough to hold down a bottom six spot.

    But then of course there’s the obligatory mention of the “flashes of brilliance” he shows. If he’d just “simplify his game” he could be a “legitimate power forward.” We don’t want “another Cam Neely” situation…

    Trade him.