Canucks Army Post-Game: MILLER, CANUCKS BLANK PREDS 1-0

Canucks Army Postgame

Going against the recent NHL trend, the Canucks continued their streak of playing in low-scoring affairs again Tuesday night. Squaring off against the Nashville Predators – minus both PK Subban and Roman Josi – the Canucks managed to do this evening what they were unable to do Sunday against New Jersey and last Tuesday against these same Predators – win.

Henrik Sedin inched one point closer to 1000 for his career, and Ryan Miller notched his second shutout of the season as the Canucks came out the victors in an otherwise dull contest. Scoring late in the third period to break a scoreless tie, Henrik helped the Canucks jump ahead of the Predators in the Western Conference playoff race and into a tie with the Los Angeles Kings for the second wild card spot (although both teams have multiple games in hand), and end Vancouver’s four-game winless streak.

Statistics

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Game Highlights

After receiving some bad news on the injury front this morning, the Canucks would also start the game with a different look at forward. Winger and noted second power play unit specialist Jayson Megna would be a scratch after coming down with an illness prior to puck drop.

Megna’s loss would prove to be Reid Boucher’s gain as the waiver wire acquisition made his Canuck debut tonight. He made an impact – literally – on his first shift of the game.

The Predators appeared to open the scoring just over 15 minutes in, after a mad scramble ensued in front of Ryan Miller. Although the Canuck netminder appeared to have smothered the puck, the puck found its way behind the goal line. The initial call on the ice was a goal, but after a very lengthy delay, it was determined that referee Jean Hebert had intended to blow the whistle prior to the puck entering the net. 

And so Abbotsford’s Derek Grant was denied his first NHL goal in his 78th NHL game. Maybe next time he’ll think before he cheats. Speaking of which, for the Nashville perspective …

With the teams tied at zero after a very even first two periods of play, Henrik Sedin finally broke the scoreless draw with a bank shot off Pekka Rinne at the tail end of a rush. The goal brought Henrik to 999 career points, one away from a massive career milestone.

The Canucks would manage to nurse that lead home, winning 1-0.

Game Notes

-With the aforementioned flu bug hitting the Canucks, Troy Stecher played only sparingly this evening. His final ice time registered 11:50 – well below his season average of 21:03. It will be interesting to see if he is good to go for Friday against the Panthers.

-Part of the reason this game, that only featured one goal and two power plays, took so long to complete tonight was the protracted discussion and review on the Predators’ disallowed goal. Here is the ruling from the NHL, kindly provided by Sportsnet’s Irfaan Gaffar.

Ultimately, I feel it was the correct call – as the play should have been blown dead – but why did it require both a huddle and a lengthy review? Referee Hebert emphatically motioned that it was a goal, and then indicated he was in the process of a blowing the whistle after the review. Which one was it?

-Tryamkin played one of his most physical games as a Canuck tonight. His confidence is only increasing, and he had an even night in the Corsi department. Desjardins experimented with him on the right side throughout the game, possibly related to his sparing usage of Stecher. It seemed to pay off handsomely on a couple of occasions.

-Ryan Miller continued his strong play of late, stopping all 30 shots he faced tonight en route to his second shutout of the season. Miller has let in two goals or fewer in every game in 2017, aside from the wild affair in Philadelphia

-Henrik will go for career point number 1000 against his old pal, Roberto Luongo, on Friday. Wouldn’t that be fitting?

Next Game

Friday, January 20 vs Florida; TV: SNET, Radio: TSN 1040

  • Pat Quinn Way

    Looking at the January prospect rankings for the next draft i noticed that all the projected picks between 18-21 where the Canucks are probably gonna finish are Defencemen. Just perfect for Benning that is after already overloading on D with the likes of Guddy, Tryamkin and Juolevi.

    Still, one name pops out at me… Cal Foote of the Kelowna Rockets, son of Avs great Adam Foote! Anyone seen this kid play? Does he offer any offensive upside?

    Maybe CA can offer us a breakdown of these potential picks instead of regurgitating Canucks press releases. Just a thought.

    • DJ_44

      CA does a good job of discussing potential draft picks. They do a big series …. in June……you know, closer to the draft and after the junior/college seasons have finished.

      Regarding GMJB “overloading” on D: did you see the state of the Canucks defense in 2015-2016? Now it is a position of strength, and can provide opportunity to improve other areas of the team.

      • Pat Quinn Way

        Well mate, I’m interested in what’s relevant during the second half of the season pal. Some of us have a life during summer when the season is over and forgotten see. Mid to bottom end of the table is where the Canucks are now and likely will be at seasons end, so let’s get an overview now ahead of the pack on our prospective picks yeah.

        Position of strength on Defence he says?! What planet do some of you people live on!

        This defence is currently 21st in the league and has languished near the bottom all season. It’s Goals diff is minus 18 even with the goalies stepping up. Despite this wonderful Benning ‘rebuild’ there is still no elite offensive D-man who can run a PP (29th in the league) ala Letang, Daughty, Keith, Burns etc which every contending team has to have in order to compete for the cup.

        But yeah, everything’s fine overloading a porous defensive D corp with mediocrity when only a few years back we had an exceptional backend… hmmm

        • Hockey Warrior

          LOL It’s just incredible how CLUELESS most of these armchair GM muppets are isn’t it.

          The types that say “the defense is set for years to come” and “we are building something special from the net out” are the same MUGS who believe BENNING when he tells them “GUDBRANSON and SUTTER are CORNERSTONES of the franchise”!!!!!!!!!!!

          I think you just need to remind yourself that hardly anyone here actually goes to the games and NOT ONE is a season ticket holder who has a vested interest in helping the team actually WIN a STANLEY CUP. Deluded Armchair Warriors eh!!

        • crofton

          They also have the youngest average age D overall in the league. And no matter who says what, whether it’s goaltending or not, this group is out performing quite a few other teams, twelve to be exact. So point of fact that’s not 21st. I’d say pretty damned good for the youngest group. So yeah, position of strength. And exactly where and how is Benning supposed to come up with an elite defenseman like those you mention? Snap his fingers and the opposing GM bends over? Benning can’t do it and neither can any other GM in the league. Besides there may just be such a one in the system now with Juolevi, or are you suggesting as well that he can’t be that or he already would be that? Developmental time be damned? Mate LOL

        • apr

          Yes, we need a power play specialist like Barrie, Green, Ekblad, Nick Leddy, at least a Severson, OEL for sure, Krug, even Chara. All of which are PP specialist for the 7th worst power plays in the league.

          What the power play really needs is 28 year old Sedins.

    • defenceman factory

      I’ve seen Cal play several games. Solid, not flashy. Good size, smarts and all round game. I expect he will have a long NHL career but too early to say for certain he will be a top pairing guy. He does play the 1st PP unit and does well but maybe not well enough to expect him to do the same in the pros.

      Looking ahead a couple years Cal has younger brother who plays wing for the same Rockets team. For 16 this kid looks incredible.

  • apr

    Well, Boucher looks like he is in crap shape. He was completely winded in his intermission interview. I guess playing 3 minutes takes a lot out of you. Of course we should give him a couple of games, but he is in nowhere near game shape to skate with Granlund and Sutter, let alone Bo’s line.

    I am still blown away by waiver wire proponents who think that someone’s mid season cast off will somehow solve a team’s weaknesses. Frankly, I would rather advocate giving Grenier a chance rather than cherry pick from someone’s leftovers.

      • apr

        If they, as you mean CA writers (JD specifically) who said that we could have traded Hamhuis for a first round pick and a top prospect, and Vrbata who sucked with a $5 mil cap hit)for a first round pick as the same source that 3 teams were willing to pick up Boucher, then so be it. Rattie is a healthy scratch tonight after doing largely nothing in 3 games by the way. Also doing nothing is every waiver wire picked up player to date.

  • TheRealPB

    Always nice to see the Canucks win even in this low-event games. Henrik was lucky to score the flukey goal but unlucky to miss one just a couple of shifts later so it all evens out. It continues to mystify me why Chaput and Megna have so much of WD’s confidence — I don’t really mind them as much as CA sometimes does, but they kind of shut down whatever line they’re on on the offensive side (they do for the most part provide speed and good defensive reliability). I would have liked to have seen Boucher on that line instead. I remain absolutely astounded by the difference in Sbisa’s game this season. Most improved player by far, he looks so much more confident and relaxed with the puck. He and Tryamkin are the player that I haven’t seen out of Gudbranson this year. I really hope Miller’s generally stellar play and the likely ascent by teams around us in the standings (given games in hand) would mean that a contender will want him at the trade deadline. As long as we hover near the playoffs though it’s unlikely we’ll offload him.

    • Locust

      So when Crosby or McJesus does that, it is a great hockey play … but when a Canuck does it, it is “flukey” … are you now one of the CA writers … ?

      • crofton

        wtf? He was trying to pass and scored, ergo….It was a fluke goal

        Or else he was shooting and it was going wide until Rinne had his way with it…. ergo it was a fluke goal

      • TheRealPB

        Ridiculous. Henrik scored a goal by throwing it to the front of the net, Rinne literally kicked it into the net. That is the definition of a fluke goal. How is pointing out that fact somehow now denigrating a player who I believe is one of the two greatest to ever play for this franchise and one of the top players to ever play in the league? Do you believe that Gretzky, Lemieux, or Howe never scored a fluke goal? I also said in the comment that it made up for the goal he was unlucky NOT to score. Don’t be so ridiculously sensitive.

  • DJ_44

    Nice to get the win. I thought Miller was solid, but there is no way it should be said he stole this one for the Canucks; they played a pretty disciplined game.

    I kind of liked the few shifts Skille took with Granlund and Sutter. He certainly has the speed, and can add a bit of physical play, as well as his release (hit the net, please!). If he would pass the puck a bit better in the offensive zone, I like him better than Megna on that line, and Megna can play 4th line wing.

    I will reserve complete judgment on Boucher for a few more games, but I certainly can see why Willie was reluctant to put him in the line up.

    Speed is definitely an issue and he does not seem overly interested in the defensive zone. If he wants in, he better step up the effort.

  • Ragnarok Ouroboros

    I’m beginning to think that the league is trying to help out Rogers Sportsnet, to ensure more Canadian teams make the playoffs.

    The Nashville goal that was called back last night I totally expected to be called a good goal. The ref looked a little embarrassed saying he meant to blow his whistle even though he was emphatically calling it a good goal just prior. If Toronto does not call the refs, then I bet the refs would have called it a good goal.

    Also, look at the NJ goal that was called back that allowed the Canucks to get to overtime. Canucks were fortuitous in that situation as well.

    Canucks have been getting a lot of opponent goals called back lately. In prior years when Canucks were at the top of their game they would never get those calls. So I’m very surprised how many of these calls have gone the Canucks way lately.

    Long term I think this hurts the Canucks since they will now get poor draft picks for finishing in the middle of the pack.

    • DJ_44

      Gallagher lives!

      I, like most, was baffled by the call last night. Kerry Fraser without the hair.

      I do not know how you would classify the NJ offside and fortuitous: Hall was offside, it was pretty black and white.

      The Canucks were on a lot of the other end of these calls for the first two and a half months of this season, but they tend to balance out I guess.

      Perhaps this latest tinfoil-under-the-hat line of thinking is due to the fact that no calls used to go the Canucks way.

  • krutov

    i thought that non goal call was bizarre. there was a goal called on the ice and nothing to replay. if he had meant to blow the whistle he should have been waiving off the goal.

    the best i can see is the ref was discussing with toronto whether he could change his goal call on the ice once his brain caught up and he realized he had been meaning to blow the whistle when the goal happened.