It’s the NHLPA mandated bye-week, so that means there isn’t any Canucks hockey to watch. I’m not sure whether to feel relief or overwhelmed with boredom.
Obviously, I lean towards the former of those options. Based on the commentary on Twitter and sometimes the comments section, I get the sense that calling my freelance writing and managing editorship of CanucksArmy is divisive as hell — people get downright angry with the notion. But rest assured, it is a job, and it’s taxing as hell at this time of the year, whether I love the job or not, so honestly, this bye week feels like a week off for me too, mostly.
Anyway, let’s get on to the cheers and the jeers and all that fine stuff. You know, the reason you came to this site and this particular article.
Cheers to Adam Gaudette for his nomination for the NCAA’s Hobey Baker Award, given to the best player in NCAA Div. 1 hockey. A year after he was snubbed, too. Gaudette has 35 points (17 goals and 18 assists) in 22 games, good for first in NCAA scoring. Not too shabby.
Jeers to the suggestion that Nikolay Goldobin hasn’t done enough to earn an extended look. At the time the Canucks sent Goldobin down, he was seventh on the team in points per hour. That’s playing sparingly, at best, and with a revolving door of linemates. Canucks head coach Travis Green has done very little to help get Goldobin going, and he’s still semi-competent as a point producer. He should be a regular on the Canucks, especially in the context that Nic Dowd is playing obscene minutes.
Cheers to the NHLPA mandated bye week.
Jeers to the Jacksonville Jaguars.
Cheers to Ben Hutton’s return to the Canucks lineup and alongside Chris Tanev on a highly effective shutdown pair. That hit that Hutton laid on Brooks Orpik was huge, and he didn’t shy away from fisticuffs when Devante Smith-Pelly came to bear on him. I don’t really care much for throwing big hits as an indication of someone playing well defensively or the value of fighting, but I know the Canucks coaching staff does, and that’s all that matters. Plays like that will keep Hutton in the lineup.
— Ryan Biech (@ryanbiech) January 10, 2018
Jeers to Derrick Pouliot’s recent run of healthy scratches. This makes no sense to me. If you feel the need to light a fire under someone, you might healthy scratch them once or twice. We’re past that point with Pouliot, and he’s still not in the Canucks’ lineup, which just seems silly. There’s the fact that Pouliot brings a dimension otherwise absent from the Canucks lineup, but there’s also the reality that Pouliot’s numbers all look really damn good. There’s just no logical reason to keep him out of the lineup at this point. Hopefully, he makes his return on the other side of the bye week.
Cheers to Alexander Edler’s current run. The understated, soft-spoken Swedish blueliner has four points in his last five games and has been a shot generation machine. Edler’s two-way results could use a little work, but he’s more than holding up his end of the bargain on offence.
Jeers to the way Michael Del Zotto has been playing. I mean, yikes. The numbers — they are all terrible.
Cheers to Brandon Sutter returning from a seven-week absence and a nagging injury to score the overtime winner in Sunday’s 3-2 Canucks win over the Minnesota Wild. How’s that for announcing one’s self?