What is Loui Eriksson's fate?
— Ryan Hank (@always90four) November 20, 2017
Loui Eriksson’s been playing some of his best hockey as a Canuck since he returned from injury. In four games, Eriksson has three assists and has generally had a solid two-way impact. In last Tuesday’s game against the Los Angeles Kings, Eriksson was buzzing with the Sedins; they all looked five years younger. Eriksson’s fate? It’s looking pretty damn good.
If the Canucks continue to deploy players the same way are they a playoff team?
— Lance Nicholson (@LanceRnicholson) November 20, 2017
I don’t think they’re a playoff team period. No amount of tinkering by any coach can change that. For whatever it’s worth, Canucks head coach Travis Green’s deployment, so far, hasn’t been that maddening relative to the average NHL coach.
Hows pettersons all round game? We know he can put up points but is he defensively responsible? Etc.
— Cole Treleaven (@Coletr11) November 20, 2017
I honestly haven’t had much time to watch Elias Pettersson this season, so I can’t speak to how his defensive game is shaking out against men in the SHL. Honestly, though, I can’t imagine he’ll have to defend that often because he always seems to have the puck.
There was one play last week I saw where he broke up a two-on-one to set up a breakaway going the other way that turned into a goal. So, he has at least one good defensive play to his credit.
If the Canucks were to fire benning who do you think would be at the top of the list (besides the ken holland connection)?
— Dave Cusano (@CusanoDamon) November 20, 2017
It pains me to say it, but I could easily see long-time Detroit Red Wings general manager Ken Holland at the top of their list. That would not be ideal. His work in the last few years has been frankly awful.
I could also foresee a scenario where the pendulum swings from the old school front office to a modernized one a la the Toronto Maple Leafs of two years ago.
Is it just me or is the powerplay exciting again judging from the small sample size since the lineup changes
— EnDLESSC4NUCK (@KoenPeterson) November 20, 2017
It’s hard to argue with the results so far. Both units have scored this week, and the second unit has two power play goals. It’s not just you — they’re looking really damn good of late.
Hi yes, I've been doing some research on Erik Gudbranson today. Would Auston Matthews be enough of a return or would the Leafs have to throw in a 1st and/or a prospect?
— Jeff Veillette (@JeffVeillette) November 20, 2017
Throw in Timothy Liljegren, and you might have a deal.
Contracts aside, which of Luca Sbisa or Erik Gudbranson would you rather have in the Canucks lineup?
— moosekayak (@Moosekayak) November 20, 2017
That’s an alarmingly difficult question to answer. At the end of the day, they’re roughly comparable players regarding their specific skill sets and the results they’ve delivered this season.
Surprisingly, Luca Sbisa has eight points in his first 16 games with the Vegas Golden Knights, and that’s the big difference between the two. Even in previous seasons, Sbisa has been more productive, if only slightly, than Erik Gudbranson.
Both players are porous defensively, but Gudbranson has historically had better results, again, if only slightly, than Sbisa. When I last checked, they both were in the bottom-ten of the league in Corsi For%, though, Gudbranson is the worst of the two.
Context matters, and I think in this instance I’m going to play the context card to describe Gudbranson’s struggles. I don’t think Gudbranson’s as bad as he’s been this season, but the system that the Canucks employ is just so ill-suited to his skill set that he’s performing at a sub-replacement level.
I’ve always said that Gudbranson is a legitimate third pair defenceman, closer to a sixth-defenceman than a seventh. I have a pet theory, too, that Sbisa is the ideal seventh-defenceman. I think in most circumstances, I’d rather have Gudbranson.
That we have to have this discussion at all though is, ahem, bad.
— Darryl Keeping (@dkeeping) November 20, 2017
I’m ashamed to say as a card-carrying Star Wars nerd, but I haven’t had the chance to buy it just yet. Let’s just say that being a freelance writer isn’t as lucrative as it might seem at times.
Comments section, in between telling me why I suck and I’m the literal worst, maybe add the odd comment if you’ve played the new Battlefront and what your thoughts are on the game.
I know Travis Green is trying to win games, but is there a way that makes sense to explain why Brandon Sutter got to play in overtime over the Sedins?
— Scott Rosenhek (@Scottr_31) November 20, 2017
I can see why Canucks head coach Travis Green might lean this way. Overtime is a space game, and you need speed to be able to keep up. Brandon Sutter can skate; neither Sedin twin is especially quick. In general, Green’s deployment that game indicated he wasn’t happy with the Sedins.
Would I have played Sutter in overtime? He’d be pretty low on my depth chart, frankly. It’s not an indefensible decision on Green’s part to prioritize him, I guess.
Is it impossible to think Pettersson jumps over after their season is over for the end of the season and if so who would they play him with?
— K Town (@KtlieverseKelly) November 20, 2017
Elias Pettersson making the jump to the NHL next season isn’t entirely outside the realm of possibility. I don’t think it’s likely, but possible, certainly. Where he’d play is a total mystery to me. Way too early to make conclusions about what the Canucks lineup will look like next year.
Have you personally ever been in a fight? Or on a team sport where you’ve fought? Or been on a team where a team mate fought? Do you have any grasp of what that’s like?
— 👊 (@jammyrft) November 20, 2017
This is, hands down, the strangest and simultaneously the best question I’ve ever answered in the CanucksArmy Monday Mailbag. Everyone else: step your game up.
I’ve been in a few fights. Having as big a mouth as I had (have?) for as long as I did, it wasn’t really an option. As a teenager especially!
In hockey, I was a shift disturber if there ever was one, and that would often drive people to punch me and the like. In fact, my last concussion (I’m on four now) came in a fight at the end of, of all things, a roller hockey game. Some ass hole came out of my blind side skating at full speed and leaned into a sucker punch with his glove on, and well, I hit the mat.
I’ve been on many a team where a friend or teammate stuck up for me after a dirty hit or the like and brought their fists down to bear on the offender.
I have a grasp of what fighting is like, to be sure. I had a big mouth, grew up in a tough part of East Van and played hockey. Eventually, I grew up. I look back on almost every altercation I’ve ever been in with as much regret or embarrassment as anything else.
You know what else? Any fight I’ve ever been a part of while playing sports was in hockey. Never in football, basketball, soccer or baseball. Not even once. This isn’t normal behaviour that should be a part of any sports’ ethos or mythology. In hockey, fighting is a flaw, not a feature. It’s not something to celebrate; it’s a black eye on the sport, pardon the pun.
With all this hype for The Flow, do you see any area of his game where he can work on to take the next step forward?
— stu michel (@7806stuman) November 20, 2017
Brock Boeser’s skating still leaves a lot to be desired, as does his consistent commitment to the defensive zone. We’re splitting hairs here though.
Have you ever personally been in a spreadsheet? Or on a team sport where you've been on a spreadsheet? Or been on a team where a team mate was on a spreadsheet? Do you have any grasp of what that's like?
— moosekayak (@Moosekayak) November 20, 2017
No, so I shouldn’t talk about analytics.
Would it make sense for VAN to look into acquiring Sam Reinhart in case Petterson can't transition to center? Slow start and seems to be stuck behind Eichel and ROR at C in BUF
— Jay Kim (@jOneKim95) November 20, 2017
I think it always makes sense to inquire on players whose value is artificially deflated due to a poor start that’s based mostly on percentages. I tend to think this is the case in Sam Reinhart, who’s been mostly really damn good in the early parts of his career.
Do you still think Owen tippet would have been the best choice at 5th overall
— Liam O'Neill (@NotLiamONeill) November 20, 2017
I’m fairly certain I never advocated for Owen Tippett at fifth overall for the Canucks. If I ever did, it was likely in the spring. Either way, Tippett is a hell of a player. Loved that pick for the Florida Panthers at eleven.
What's up with Virtanen's ice time and whose fault is it that he's getting <10 minutes a night? Is it Virtanen's game or is Green wary of giving him more responsibility? Or is it simply because there are too many bodies competing for TOI?
— Trevor Crawley (@tcrawls) November 20, 2017
It’s based on circumstance mostly I think. It’s the Sedins minutes that are getting shortchanged as much as anything and it’s their line that Jake Virtanen plays on most nights. Virtanen’s game is far from perfect, but it’s more than good enough for the Canucks lineup. Just a lot of factors outside Virtanen’s control that are working against him.
Will pettersson make the Canucks next year? Start in AHL? SHL again?
— Tyler (@TylerS717) November 20, 2017
I’m willing to bet that Pettersson plays in the AHL next season.
What are your thoughts on a top 6 of
Bae Bo boeser
Ericksson Granny Vanek
Granny's line replacing Sutter's line as the shut down line and getting Vanek a lot more ice time in the process.
Could it work?
— A.Am'mar (@taizzzz5) November 20, 2017
I’m not so sure of a shutdown line with Thomas Vanek on it. Otherwise, I don’t have many issues with the makeup of this top six. It’s not the worst setup imaginable.
What are the Canucks winning percentage when Dorsett fights someone?
— Bryan (@kesrows) November 20, 2017
The Canucks are 2-2 when Dorsett fights.
Gudbranson is going to get injured before the canucks can trade him, isn't he?
— I love hipchecks (@ilovehipchecks) November 20, 2017
I would hope not.
Is Elias Pettersson the Christ?
— Passive Voice (@Z_A_Kline) November 20, 2017
I’m not going to rule this out.
Who are legitimate candidates to possibly be moved by Vancouver before the deadline ?
— Danno (@8danno4) November 20, 2017
Erik Gudbranson, Thomas Vanek, Alexander Burmistrov, Ben Hutton, Alex Biega.
Which forward, outside of the B-line, has impressed you the most so far?
— Markus Meyer (@Markus_Meyer27) November 20, 2017
I’ve actually been a big fan of Thomas Vanek’s work so far this season; Virtanen, too.
Is it a crime to call future Juolevi-Boeser PP goals as Brockolli?
— Henry Crutching (@HCrutching) November 20, 2017
You do you, man.