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Photo Credit: Gary A. Vasquez - USA TODAY Sports

CanucksArmy Post Game: Three Kings

Puck Drop

With the lacklustre efforts pilling up lately, the Canucks, and the Kings for that matter, each had a jump in their step to start this one. Both teams came out with pace, if not a ton of purpose early.

With thirteen and a half to go, Bo Horvat drew the games first penalty, putting Kings defenceman Derek Forbort in the box for high-sticking after Horvat made a power move.

With 14 seconds to go in Forbort’s penalty, Jake Muzzin went off for interference Angling Jake Virtanen into the boards, in what appeared to be a pretty soft call.

Less than a minute later, Sam Gagner continued the parade to the box, taking the Canucks off the power-play with a holding call.

Six seconds after the LA power-play expired, Anders Nilsson made his second impressive stop of the period off Jeff Carter.

With Ben Hutton stepping out of the box, Tyler Toffoli redirected a puck in mid-air, that went just wide nearly opening the scoring. The game remained tied at zero’s after the first.

2nd

Toffoli almost opened the scoring to end the first; he did open the scoring early in the second.

Ben Hutton and Derrick Pouliot had a tough first period, with Pouliot, in particular, fighting the puck. The pair was on the ice and victimized by Toffoli on the opening goal. Hutton pinched down allowing Toffoli to get behind him, and Pouliot was late to react and was left chasing Toffoli on a breakaway. 1-0 LA

The Canucks best chance of the night came with thirteen minutes left in the second. With a gaping net and tons of room to get the shot off, Gagner had Jonathan Quick at his mercy. With Quick losing his stick as a scrambled to get across his crease, Gagner sailed the puck high over the net.

The games second goal came with five minutes left in the second.

Initially, it looked like Dustin Brown tipped in Anze Kopitar’s pass, giving LA a 2-0 lead. But the replay showed it was actually Troy Stecher deflecting Kopitar’s pass in his own net as he tried to knock down the puck.

3rd Period

After generating just 16 shots through the first two periods, in large part to just three first period shots, the Canucks put twelve on net in the third. Life without Boeser has been hard for the Canucks, and it showed again tonight as they struggled to generate offence.

But they received some brotherly love and support from a fellow Vancouver team in their quest for offence tonight. Does anyone know if Kei Kamara can skate?

I mentioned earlier that Hutton and Pouliot were having a tough night? Well, it continued in the third for the young defenders, neither of them are going to want to remember this performance.

Ben Hutton failed to clear the puck along the left wall, and with Derrick Pouliot taking the man with the puck, Tanner Pearson was all alone behind the Canucks defence. Pearson showed great patience recognizing the time and space he had to work with, going cross crease and waiting out Anders Nilsson.

Of all the tough performances the Canucks had on the night, the most egregious didn’t come on the ice. After Nic Dowd got tied up with Dion Phaneuf behind Quick, the Canucks twitter account served up this atrocity. Unforgivable.(sarcasm folks)

Travis Green took a page out of the Mike Keenan playbook, pulling Nilsson with 4:05 to go in the third. Unfortunately less than a minute later Henrik Sedin was sent to the penalty box ending any hope of a miraculous comeback.

The Numbers

‘Quick Hits

  • Prior to tonight, the Canucks had drawn just one penalty in each of their last four games. The Kings were sent to the box four times on Monday night. Tho the result didn’t go the Canucks way, there were positives to take in the Canucks drawing more calls in large part to a better effort.
  • The Canucks have scored just three goals in four games since Brock Boeser suffered a season-ending back injury. Life after Boeser or as some are calling AB(After Boeser), hasn’t been kind to the Canucks. With the team struggling to score, the value of a triggerman like Boeser is only being magnified at the moment and shows how far the Canucks have to go. Being reliant on one player isn’t a recipe for success in the grind of an NHL season.
  • After being shutout Sunday night and again on Monday, the Canucks’ goalless drought is up to 152 minutes and nine seconds.
  • Chadallac

    I’m looking at the standings and there is a very real possibility if the Canucks play like this the rest of the year we could finish last overall. Arizona is 4points back with 2 extra games, Buffalo is 3 back with 1 extra game. Ottawa leap frogged us tonight. Woohoo. If we finish last overall lowest we can pick is 4th overall, which would still be better than the last two years. And I think it is still so valuable to be able to pick 1st in rounds 2 through 7, though we did trade one pick for Pouliot. I think it was a 4th rounder. If we can trade 2 or 3 of Baertschi, Granlund, Gholdobin, Hutton, Nilsson for picks in 2nd through 7th round we could walk away with another nice draft. I really hope we pick a defenseman in the first & second rounds this year.

  • Braindead Benning

    Great team assembled by Jimbo & co. Look as though they are going to finish even lower in points than last year…even after 4 years of trades and drafting i am sure that are giing to be some folk that need to keep.blami v blame Mike Gillis…lol

    • I am Ted

      Hey moron, Gillis is partially responsible. Anyone with at least half a brain can figure that out. Clearly, you don’t fit that criteria.

      Benning has been too slow in making moves and not pro-active enough or creative enough to generate some big moves. I think there have been a few instances where he could have made huge moves to improve the team but failed to do so; that might be the difference between a contending team and a team that gets to watch the post-season. It’s too bad. However, Benning is doing a far better job than Gillis did.

      • Braindead Benning

        Lol “Ted” whats next? Blaming BB for the aging of sedins????

        BTW, i dont think there are more than a few instances that old Jimbo could have improved this team, he is just following the steps he learned by colleague and fellow mentor Peter Chiarelli and
        Like yourself, JB is just plain stupid… always making ill timed decisions and bying time to convince idiots like you that he has a plan…

        Its been 4 years there princess and all he has to show for so far is 1 f-ing core player making a difference to the roster !!!.

  • TD

    Please get Gagner off the first pp unit. The other team completely ignores him because he is not a threat from there. Let Stecher or Hutton have some PP time.

    The only way I can get through these games is by thinking: Pettersson, Dahlen, Gaudette, Juolevi, Demko and Dahlin (fingers crossed) and repeat.

  • Defenceman Factory

    Life without a top line or a first pairing on D is pretty ugly. I can see a future 1st line ( and a 2nd for that matter) but don’t see how the D could get much better for next year. Not likely this year’s draft pick can step in and make a big difference.

    There has to be something wrong with Henrik. His complete lack of shots has been noticeable for a while but last night he was even wiffing on shoot ins.

    • NeverWas

      I think the 3 top D men in the draft could step right into the NHL… Dahlin for sure, the other 2 maybe the following year at most but all 3 are pretty high end with RD being absolutely elite. Canucks get a top 3 pick and that changes things a lot…

      • There are several high-end defensive prospects in this draft who can probably step in and play at the NHL level next year, and who will probably be impact defensemen by their early 20s, but making an impact from the back end at 18/19 is a *tall* order. Probably only Dahlin is up to that task.

    • Burnabybob

      If they win first overall in the draft lottery, their defense could improve significantly.

      And who knows, Bouchard, Dobson or Boqvist could step right in next year. Not likely, but possible.

  • canuckfan

    The players put in a good effort against the Kings and do not look like they are giving up, they just don’t have the mix of talent with two of the B’s out they just don’t have the scoring power. If they were going to have a tough season then this was the season to have it. The losing is getting tough (but now most of us are hoping for it because of the prize we may get because we are so close) but the team has been fun to watch. There have not been many games this year where they totally sucked because of lack of effort.
    I would like to see a couple of the younger players brought up from Utica to give them a look such as McEwen and Chatfield. Pouliot has been a nice find unless him and Hutton train hard this summer don’t see them coming back unless they are sent to Utica with Oli and Chatfield and whoever we get in the draft our defence will be different next year.
    Maybe Henrik is playing hurt which would be just like him the leader he is and if it is his last season he wants to be out there hurt or not.

  • Holly Wood

    Against a bigger, heavier team the quartet of Stecher, MDZ, Hutton and Pouliot struggled all night long. Yet the pair of Edler and Gudbranson were clearly the top pairing last night.

  • Nuck16

    Big win by the Sens last night. Canucks are starting to look more and more like the favourite for the #1 seed at the draft lottery. The big question is, who will we select with our 4th pick?

  • Canuck70

    Travis Green is doing a great job with his ‘sneaky tank coaching’. He knows that losing really means winning at the draft. He put Gagne in Boeser’s power play spot and was rewarded by Gagne missing the net. He sat Jokinen, the teams latest goal scorer. Goldy played with the Sedins so all three could continue slumping together. If TG continues his well timed methology we can expect Tanev to have an injury recovery setback and not be available for a few more games. After all, why risk our best defenceman if he is not 100%?
    If we are lucky, Gaudette carries on in his playoffs and avoids a Canuck audition, Pettersen plays for team Sweden at the world’s and all other available prospects head for Utica. I hate losing hockey but this season and the last two are exactly what the team needs in building for the future.