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Photo Credit: Rant Sports

Canucks Army Post-Game: Burrows comes home

FINAL SCORE: OTTAWA 3, VANCOUVER 2 (SO)

We could be sad about this outcome, but let’s instead re-watch this insanely touching Alex Burrows tribute over and over again until we’ve lost all ability to feel anything.

THE RUNDOWN

The game opened up with probably the most frustrating goal Jacob Markstrom will allow all season.

Sometimes, Markstrom can get out of position (although he’s significantly cleaned it up since working in Vancouver). Sometimes, he can hurt his own chances at making a save by getting too over-athletic with a first stop. Sometimes, he can come out too far and leave the net wide open.

Scoring opened on Tuesday night, though, with… a brain fart. Perfectly squared to the puck, Markstrom didn’t seal his butterfly tightly enough by just enough, and the puck slithered between his pads to trickle into the net for Cody Ceci to open up scoring a little over four minutes into the first period.

Vancouver would even up the score just three minutes later, when Chris Tanev took advantage of a prime screen by the mercurial Thomas Vanek to go five-hole on a goal of his own.

Vanek would help give Vancouver a lead late in the second period, despite the Canucks getting heartily outshot through the first two frames. He found a nice path through traffic on his own goal, firing the puck from the point on a wide-open chunk of net while Anderson struggled to locate the play.

Vancouver could only play with fire for so long, though, as Ottawa managed to even up the score early in the third period with a tally from Ryan Dzingel; neither club would manage to score again during regulation play, forcing first an overtime period then a shootout.

Vancouver ultimately dropped the game in the skills show, losing on a goal scored by the ever-excellent Mark Stone.

They got a chance to see old friend and peak shitheel Alex Burrows, though, and he got himself a nice little tribute for his troubles.

OBSERVATIONS

Thomas Vanek gets a lot of vitriol from members of the fanbase that love gritty, nose-grinding, blue-collar hockey. He isn’t overly physical, he doesn’t battle for pucks all that often, and he’s got a nasty habit of falling short in much-needed moments when there isn’t a goal to be scored.

The veteran was signed to inject some much-needed depth offense into Vancouver’s lineup, though, and that’s exactly what he provided tonight. He was an instrumental part of the first goal, screening Craig Anderson during what was otherwise a rock-solid game for the veteran starter, then contributed with a tally of his own to boot.

It’s frustrating that Boeser still isn’t out there with the team, but it is what it is. Bo Horvat has still been incredibly strong for the team, there’s no surprise there, and Erik Gudbranson deserves a little nod for recording four shots on goal on the night. Even Ben Hutton managed to get a little shot-blocking action, although seemed to be in a bit of pain after the fact. He returned for the third period of play, but that’s worth keeping an eye on.

It’s important to note, though, that Jacob Markstrom did not lose this game for the Canucks.

When all was said and done, the Canucks were handily outshot through three regulation periods and five minutes of overtime hockey, boasting just 28 recorded shots on goal to Ottawa’s 42. They failed to capitalize on a single power-play opportunity, and only found the back of the net once in five shootout attempts.

Markstrom’s first goal allowed was inexcusable by any standard, but every goaltender lets in an awful one now and again. His 40 saves on the night – including four against Burrows (one of which was an absolute monster of a recovery save after a brief misread), five against J-G Pageau, and a shocking six against Mark Borowiecki – kept the Canucks in the game, not the other way around.

Vancouver allowed Mark Borowiecki to take six shots on goal. Let that marinate for a little bit.

THE NUMBERS

  • copey

    Good writeup, except for that WTF word about Burr. I live just a stone’s throw from his home town, and I wept when he scored that Game 7 goal in OT. Forever Burrows!

    As for more immediate matters, Stecher and Hutton are not a good pairing, and Gudbrandson is still a major work in progress (some good and some terrible). Del Zotto is good with the puck, but he can’t hit the side of a barn with his shot.

    The major issue is whom to sit for next game so Boeser draws in. I think Dorsett’s earned it, and, more importantly, the PK needs him until Gaunce returns. Vanek was +2 so that’s a bad call to bump him. Eriksson was again not great, but the most invisible player I think was Gagner. If he did a single thing at 5×5 I didn’t see it. I’d sit him for Boeser. Maybe that’ll spark Eriksson and Burmistrov.

    • Cageyvet

      I might sit Burmistrov over Gagner, but 6 of one, a half dozen of the other.

      It was a sloppy outing and Stecher and Hutton struggled. Overall you still see a team that’s got a lot of linemates who are still getting used to each other.

      We didn’t deserve more than a point, yet once again Markstrom was strong after an early gaffe. I foresee a number of games like this ahead of us…..not quite good enough to bury a team, not quite bad enough to get buried. I think being in a position to win late in the game with regularity would be a positive step for this team.

      The Sedins were noticeably better, thankfully. We were just a little too cute tonight, and left a lot of rushes in the neutral zone, but the quick attempts to push the puck forward is appreciated.

      Burrows……..great to see the fans and team give him his due, one of my all-time favorite Canucks.

  • crofton

    What bothered me most about this game, aside from blowing a 3rd period lead, was Green. After each goal, the camera cut to him in time to see him cursing first about Markstrom, and then I assume about Hutton. Players on the bench would hear that and it’s not good for maintaining team togetherness or cohesiveness. Crap happens Green, get over it and maintain your cool, players don’t want to feel like if they make a mistake, they will be tossed under the bus.
    And I still have to wonder wtf, Boesser being hailed in some circles as a possible rookie of the year….it won’t happen if Green won’t play him. How is this much different from WD with Megna and Chaput?

    • Saundero

      Sorry, but I think you’re dead wrong. Players want a coach who is passionate and invested in every play. There are numerous accounts of players who really appreciate Green and how he handles adversity and poor plays (Subban, Virtanen). He calls them out for mistakes, talks them through how to fix things and clearly communicates expectations. This is so much better than a coach who shows no emotion, does not communicate, and benches or punishes players without saying why or how to fix things. So far I’m impressed with Green.

    • canuckfan

      I guess we want Green to hand out participation ribbons after every game. What do you want him to do not have players realize their mistakes and celebrate the mistakes. They must learn from mistakes and not do them again. If they keep making mental mistakes they will not be dressing. It will be how the team deals with mistakes some will be personal others will be a breakdown of the team or those on the ice at the time.
      Now the coaching staff will work on ways to make sure the mistakes are not repeated,that is their role. If after coaching and giving the player a chance the same player(s) a chance to prove themselves the mistakes keep happening expect lineup changes. Players are accountable to their teammates if mediocrity is rewarded and accepted then that will lower the teams try level.
      Green is doing a good job preparing for the games, with Willy we saw massive team breakdowns usually at the beginning of the game and it went downhill from there as the team was not prepared. I am not wanting to fire a coach after 2 games when we get 3 out of 4 points he is doing a good job and if you are really honest you will see that he doesn’t have a whole lot of superstars that can eat up ice time and carry the team by scoring a pile of goals.
      I like the way he has Edler and Tanev together rather than pairing them with lessor players. They will eat up ice time and keep the other teams best players at bay. We needed to keep the game at a fast pace but Ottawa was able to slow the game down and play their game.

  • Braindead Benning

    Besides the first goal I thought that Markstrom was quite solid tonight and also played well against the oilers. The Canucks May have not received much in return for having quite arguably the best 2 punch goaltending tandom a few years back however, Horvat and Markstrom are not that bad consultation prizes.

  • truthseeker

    Some slop in that game. Not the best but not terrible either. That was a conference final team and they do play a style that is a little frustrating. The game never really seemed to have much flow and I suspect that’s just the way the Sens like it.

    Twins looked good. Vanek looked alright. Lazy on a few plays but he also seems like he knows when to be in the right place at the right time. Horvat and his line seemed very good. Jake looked pretty good again. Even Eriksson didn’t look terrible. Not sure why some of you are complaining about Burmistrov. He seems to be buzzing pretty good out there in the first two games. Seems a bit….wild…though…lol…like not on target.

    On D I don’t think it was quite as good. Hutton in particular and Stetch at times. Some pretty big bungled miscues. Still…maybe pull Hutton for a game if Pouliot is ready…let him think about things.

    Markstrom…same as the other night….bad goal…recovery….solid play.

    I’m not sure. The canucks seemed a bit lazy in that game…but I’m not sure if that was more a result of the Sen’s system or them not being as “up” for this game after the opener.

    Regardless, they need to tighten the screws.

    Fantastic reception for Burrows. Good work paying customers!

    • Holly Wood

      The Hutton/Stecher pairing looks good on paper but looks like a fire drill a couple of times each game. (I got it you take it ). If it continues we may see Pouliot or gasp Biega sooner than you think. They are both young puck movers that continue to grow but when you have extra d on the roster coaches are looking for stability from their 3rd pairing

  • TheRealPB

    A pretty uneven and sloppy game. I thought the Sedins looked the best I’ve seen from the preseason through now — much more active and engaged. Vanek was ok, even with the goal and screen. Hard for many of the others to get into a rhythm with all the early penalties. I would sit Gagner — he’s been invisible — in favor of Boeser. Both Dorsett and Virtanen have played more noticeable roles. Despite all the CA hate for Gudbranson, I actually think he’s looked way better this year. I like the way the d is jumping up, not only into the play but also to stand up the opposition at the blue line. Del Zotto is a bit of an adventure but overall clearly brings something to the table. I also like the shutdown pairing of Edler and Tanev, who really seem to play off each other (and Tanev seems to be rushing the puck more). I am starting to wonder how much both Stecher and Hutton benefited from being paired with vets in the past because both of them have looked terrible. I wouldn’t mind seeing Pouliot drawing in for either. The power play continues to look absolutely godawful. I would give Burmistrov more of an opportunity as he’s looked pretty good in (very) limited minutes. Eriksson I also think has looked good and Baertschi as snakebite as early last year.

  • jaybird43

    Yup. Good enough to hang around. Twins were better, but Daniel’s lackadaisical meander back to the puck on the PP in his own zone, nearly cost the Canucks a short handed. WTF Daniel? Agree Green’s got to stop grousing at the bench and swearing after every goal against. Show some class and support your players. Accountability sure; but with kindness too. Hutton did not look great, but broke up a two on one on an Ottawa break out with a great stick. Ya, maybe draw Pouliot in for Hutton, Stetcher or Guddy? Tanev looking more dangerous offensively and a good pairing with Edler. Overall a decent game and while outshot, chances were kinda even. I like Burmistrov the more I see of him. Swap Boeser in for somebody for goodness sakes; Eriksson, Gagner?

  • Missing Kes

    Like the vast majority of fans I was only at the game to pay my respects to Burr. It struck me that this is a guy like Honey Badger that should never have been traded, especially for the underwhelming returns… two undersized question marks, neither of whom are now or will be worthy of lacing up the skates of Alex and Jannik in the annals of Canuck history.

    It also struck me that Ryan Kesler deserved the same level of respect Burr got but didn’t just because he wouldn’t accept the disaster he knew was coming under Jim Benning. As we can all now see Kes was right, the disgraceful hater fans were WRONG…

    • Dahlenfan

      Burrowed was worth a bag of pucks
      To get anything never mind fallen was a major score. Even if fallen turns into nothing it was a good trade for the nuks. Only reason hansen got traded was expansion draft
      That it. No other reason and we have 3 prospects because of him. None may pan out but again a good trade. We would of lost him for nothing. So love them both. But benning did what was needed to be done

  • speering major

    Lou has been invisible for over a season now. You can’t sit him since his contract is untradeable and they are stuck with him for years. Brock should get in the line up by the end of next week when they have a back to back. Until then I would wait for one of the fringe guys to falter or an injury. Right now, Dorsett, Virtanen, and Burmistrov are playing well and don’t deserve to sit.

    • Missing Kes

      Travis Green is Willie D without the Calder Cup. All this rubbish about him being any different in his philosophies is a nonsense, as his time in Utica and here so far have shown us. The fact that Green is employing a more uptempo style is merely the way the whole league is operating in trying to copy Pittsburgh.

      Being at the game last night i agree having seen it first hand that Green is an arrogant pr(i)ck who needs to keep his emotions and foul mouth in check – the players hold the power, not rookie coaches. The guy is a grade A jerk. Not impressed with Green at-all.

  • DJ_44

    I was at the game. Ottawa is a frustrating team to play against. The good: the Sedin line. Sure, people and press want to rip Vanek, but it is based on perceived reputation and not play. He works hard on the boards and has a s scoring touch. For Kuzma to bait Green to slag Vanek was stupid. He was providing the screen on the Tanev goal, and scored the second. The DelZotto/Gudbranson pairing. Both were solid.

    Not so good. Hutton. I should be painfully obvious to those who thought it was Gudbranson that was weak last year. Not so much,eh?
    Baertschi. He is starting to look am awful lot like Etem with better hands. Dorset was less noticeable last night… And had no hands what so ever.

    Time for Brock. My choice to sit. Baertschi, Dorset, Gagner, in that order.

    • jaybird43

      I think it’s a bit extreme to sit Baertschi. Sometimes you’ve got to let them get their wheels going. I think Baertschi has a tough linemate: Eriksson. So that means Bo and Even have to carry the offense on that line. And I think Baertschi is still suffering from whatever took him out of the final preseason game …

  • Doodly Doot

    Green is awesome. A coach who is in control and getting his team to work. And teaching (which includes messy failure) his squad to play an effective and very entertaining style of hockey. It was obvious that the Sedins and Vanek were affected by the previous game’s ice time. Think of how this psychology plays out over the course of the year. Green is working to hardwire the brains of the players into a Burrows-like work ethic. Think of how jacked Boeser will be if he’s in the lineup for Thursday. I feel if we’re 5-5 after 10 games, that will be fine. I don’t think we’ll see the real team until after 20 anyway. And there are definitely players not here now who will be. Book it. Good times are just beginning.

  • Rodeobill

    I got a little misty when Burrows was watching his video, gotta admit.
    I want to see Boes in there like everyone else, but I understand Green not wanting to change the lines coming off of the Edm. win. I also am looking forward to seeing what Pouliot is about too. I hope Tanev keeps playing like this this season, He might give Burns a run. Jk, but he looks great even offensively so far this season. I didn’t notice all the defensive breakdowns everyone is talking about except Hutton on the second goal, but compared to the last few years we look faster, tighter, and dare I say… more competitive. I thought all our pairs did well on D for the most ( I am used to facepalms from Bartowski or Sbisa) and the only line I thought had it tough tonight was the Sutter line (who kinda stole the show last game). It was a good game, I just wish Burr would have scored the game winner if we were destined to lose.

  • Dahlenfan

    Canucks are way easier to watch this year. We finally actually forecheck. They are moving the puck fast and on the most part smart passes. Sedins looked good night. After that first game I was a little scared they will drop further down the cliff. Good game for them and vanek. Horvat looked like Kesler out there last night. What i mean by that is it looked like a helicopter line as in a center with no wings. He was trying to do too much on his own. His wingers need to do more. I like baert but he needs to be more of a threat. Good work to get break away just couldn’t finish. Eriksson has looked good on the defensive side of things but not so much on offense. Sutter and granlund had another good night . Granlund had a beauty shootout goal. Dorsett not as much. If i was to take someone put for boeser it would be gagner. Hes the only one i think hasnt really played to his top compared to anyone else. Maybe burmistrov. Man he looks talented but lacks iq to make the right play. Elder looked good being back with tanev. Button and stretcher were the weakest pair by far. They need to be able to make smart decisions faster. Slot of the miscues were because of those 2. If maelstrom can not let in a bad goal to start the game we had a better chance of winning. He robbed burrowed though so he kinda made up for it. But it would be nice if he makes both those saves. That’s the difference between winning in the NhL. As for boeser i get what green is doing. I kust jope he doesnt have to prove his poont for long
    If your not gonna play boeser than send him to the A. He needs to play. Anyway. Good game nucks.