Vancouver Canucks vs Carolina Hurricanes Post Game Recap: Entering The Storm

The Rundown

Tonight, the Vancouver Canucks would play the 2nd game of their first road trip during the 2018/2019 season. After a loss on Saturday, the Canucks were looking at bouncing back and picking up a win down in Raleigh. Tonight’s game had 2 super rookies featured on each team. Andrei Svechnikov on the ice for Carolina, while our golden boy Elias Pettersson tried to get a point in his 3rd straight NHL game to start his career.


After the beat down in Calgary, the Canucks change things up with their lineup before tonight’s tilt. Michael Del Zotto was scratched for the first time in a Canucks uniform, while Ben Hutton slotted in for his first game of the year. Another debut for the team was Tim Schaller drawing into the lineup while Tyler Motte was scratched.


1st Period

Right off the bat in this hockey game, an early goal would come to bite the Canucks early. Jordan Stall picked up a puck at the blue line and fired a shot on goal that deflected and handcuffed Jakob Markstrom and gave Carolina an early 1 goal lead. Not the start the Canucks were looking for on the road after a poor performance a few nights prior.


The Canucks would wake up and start getting some quality chances of their own, with Tim Schaller nearly stuffing a chance on the backhand a minute later. Then, Erik Gudbranson of all people would draw a tripping penalty in his own end, and give the Canucks their first power-play of the hockey game. It would be the Hurricanes with the best chance of the man-advantage, with Markstrom forced to stop Stall on a 2 on 1 shorthanded opportunity. The Canucks wouldn’t be able to capitalize off the momentum of the big save, and would fail to convert on the power-play.

Then, out of seemingly nothing. Alexander Edler would make a great stretch pass to Sven Baertschi, who would come in on goal, make a fantastic fake, and put a puck in behind the outstretched starter Curtis McElhinney to tie the game up at 1.


The next couple minutes would see some quality scoring chances for the Nikolay Goldobin, Elias Pettersson, and Loui Eriksson line. Goldobin and Pettersson’s offensive abilities were on display, with a couple of quality shots fired. However they couldn’t put one home.


11 minutes into the 1st period, the Canucks would be hemmed in their own end. While one Hurricane scoring chance was thwarted by a good back check by Jake Virtanen. The puck would wind up at the blue-line and held in by the Hurricanes. Right after, a shot on goal by the Hurricanes Brett Pesce would be deflected off the leg of Edler and past Markstrom to re-establish the 1 goal lead. 2-1 Carolina.


There wasn’t a lot of action from that goal to the next goal scored, and again it would be the Hurricanes who put another puck in the back of the net. An awful job by Pouliot defending on the rush leads to the Hurricanes having possession in the Canucks zone. In a few short seconds, both defense-men would be behind the Canucks goal, and Sebastian Aho is alone in front to put home the 3rd Carolina goal to make it 3-1 with 2 minutes left in the period.


A minute later, the Hurricanes would take a too many men penalty and put the Canucks on their 2nd power-play of the evening. The Canucks wouldn’t score on the man advantage in the 1st period, and we’d go into the intermission with the score 3-1 for Carolina.


2nd Period

So that power-play the Canucks had going coming into the period? Well they’d capitalize on it. A good move at the blue-line from Baertschi opens up a passing lane to Horvat. Baertschi feeds Horvat, who promptly rifles a shot that deflects past McElhinney to give the Canucks life 46 seconds into period number 2.


Unfortunately for the boys in white, the Hurricanes would respond just a minute later. After numerous attempts to get the puck out of the Canucks zone fail to achieve their intended goal. It would be Svechnikov who finds some garbage and puts it home, just past a sprawling Pettersson who tried to rush into position, but couldn’t get the stick of Svechnikov in time. 4-2 Carolina.


A few moments later Vancouver would get back to within 1. After Baertschi drew a penalty resulting from getting slashed by Hurricanes forward Phillip Di Giuseppe. The team would again come through on the power-play. Pettersson would make a great move to enter the zone and pass to Edler, who then passed the puck hard right to Baertschi who was in front of the net. Baertschi would tip the puck off of the Hurricanes defenseman covering Horvat and into the net for his 2nd goal of the game, his 3rd point, and a secondary assist to Elias Pettersson, who would record a point in his 3rd straight NHL game to start his career.


The second would chug along at a quiet pace until some rough stuff put the teams to 4 on 4 hockey. The Hurricanes would have a glorious chance on the 2 on 1, but it’d be Goldobin on the back check coming to help out his goaltender, clearing a puck out of the crease to keep it a 4-3 hockey game. Oh, and Goldobin was also able to come up the ice while bouncing the puck off his stick like nobody’s business.


As it would turn out, going into the 3rd period the score would remain 4-3 for the Hurricanes. The Canucks special teams were doing their job tonight, but the overall team defense and goaltending would have to be better in order to allow the team to stage a comeback.


3rd Period

This may have been one of the most uneventful 3rd periods I’ve witnessed in a long while. There was a good sequence of end to end rushes a few minutes in, after that, the Hurricanes carefully and methodically wound down the clock. It was a choke hold, with lots of stoppages, good shot selection, and excellent care of the puck from Carolina. Carolina was playing like I hope the Canucks will play down the road… the light after all the pain.


In the dying minutes we’d get the only highlight of the period, and it’d be a Carolina tally. Warren Foeggle would receive the puck after a Brock Boeser turnover and fire a knuckle puck over the shoulder of Markstrom. Making it 5-3 for Carolina.


That’s how this one would end, while the goals were nice to see, again a lack of team defense and goaltending sunk the ship in the middle of the storm.


Advanced Stats

Both photos courtesy of Naturalstattrick.com

Wrap Up

Another good showing on the attack for this Canucks team, and another game where the play in their own end leaves much to be desired. Elias Pettersson getting on the score-sheet in a night where he was played tight is a good sign, and his chemistry with Goldobin is growing by the game. Horvat getting another goal on the is another good sign, and Sven Baertschi had himself a game after being demoted off the Bo/Brock line. Brock Boeser also got a tick in the point column with his assist, and while he still looks like his timing is off after the back injury there were at least some glimmers of hope to show he’s coming back around, albeit slowly. Brock will start scoring, at a rapid pace, it’s just going to take a while to get him 100% back to form. Once him and Pettersson are going at full cylinders, this team might be fun to watch even if they’re getting beat up in the score column.  


This defense though… oh my goodness. They’ve allowed 12 goals on the road in 2 games, and just don’t have the talent to compete on a consistent basis. Derrick Pouliot, although he brings a bit of offensive skill, was woefully insufficient in his own end and both him and Erik Gudbranson struggled with the skill of this young Hurricanes team. Ben Hutton didn’t commit many errors tonight, he just didn’t do much that was super impressive. Stecher gave it his all, made some mistakes but everyone does. Edler had himself a night, however he did deflect in the 2nd goal of the game. All in all, this defense isn’t going to be able to help out Markstrom on most nights, and they weren’t able to tonight.


Leading right into the goaltending this evening, Markstrom had himself a rough outing. The 1st 2 goals of this game were deflected shots that Markstrom was having trouble reading, and potentially overplaying. The 5th goal he seemed super uncomfortable as it went over his shoulder. He was fighting pucks all night, losing track of the puck numerous times throughout the game, and struggling at controlling his rebounds. Ultimately it was a rough game for Markstrom, and the Canucks have no hope in winning a hockey game if he plays like this with the defense in front of him.

All in all, a game that might seem all too familiar to Canucks fans. The offensive hope is there, with Pettersson, Horvat, Goldobin and Baertschi putting up some numbers, with the belief that Boeser isn’t too far behind. While that won’t be enough for this current Canucks team to make the playoffs, it should help to keep games reasonable throughout the year. Tonight, it was Baertschi with the highlight reel goal, and most of the offense. We’ll see what happens in Tampa on Thursday.

  • So far this year the Canucks going into third periods seem to be in the hunt to win games and look better in that regard. However I’m not really sure what kind of team attack or overall strategy Green wants his players to implement. It’s puzzling and if it’s a quick transition game they just don’t have the D to do that. Taking care of your own end more efficiently may be a better approach but what do the fans know? They have just enough guys to score in close games they may win but it’s in their own zone that’s of concern IMO. We shall see.

  • Indefensibleplay in net tonight. Green needs to give Marky the hook from time to time. Benning having made no effort to repair last season’s goaltending or defence is looking more and more like an intentional tank.

    • Markstrom looked pretty good the last dozen games or more last year. So far this year except for the first game he has regressed from that level. You can’t change goalies like you change socks.

    • Given that nobody wants to give us assets for players that we don’t want, I’m not surprised that Benning is letting these contracts run out until his draft picks are ready. Next year, Hutton, Pouliot, MDZ and Nilsson will be unemployed. So we can refresh the entire LHD core with Hughes, Juolevi, and Brisebois (Edler resigns at a hometown discount if he wants to stay in Vancouver) and get Demko as the starter (Markstrom as back-up).

        • Until he actually plays, he’ll always be just “potential”. His development arc is no difference from Jon Quick or Corey Crawford. After putting in their time in the AHL, they played the majority of games in their rookie season. Demko was one of the top 3 goalies in the AHL last year in terms of SV% and GAA. By next season, he’ll have had 3 seasons as the starter in the NCAA and 3 seasons as a starter in the AHL. He’ll be ready by then.

  • Regardless of all the obvious deficiencies the team is displaying every game so far has been entertaining besides, know one was expecting anything from this team so this has been a pleasant surprise to finally see some GOALS

  • The hope was that if the Canucks could hold their ground at 5 on 5 then maybe their PK+PP would win some games but in this one all 5 goals were at even strength.

    Hutton played very well in his 13 minutes. Pouliot not so much in his 22 but I guess Green didn`t see it that way.

    It`s still too early for trades but three teams look to be having a rough start; Detroit, Philly and The Rangers.

  • Pouliot, Gudbranson, Markstromm and Boeser need to sit in the press box for a game or 2. Easily the 4 worst players on the ice last night. I could see Chatfield and Julolevi called up sooner rather than later.

  • Hard to believe a shot could go over the shoulder of a 6’6″ goalie and into a 48″ high net, but it happened.
    I think we have to ask ourselves if we need a first-rate goaltender or a first-overall draft pick.

    • The pick.

      Is anyone going to be happy if Benning overpays for a goalie and Green implements a trap game and the Canucks play boring one goal games night after night and end up a middling team with middling picks?

      Instead you get exciting hockey even if it’s not always for the right reasons.

  • Carolina is a good team, as are most on this road trip. We could very well see ourselves in a 1-10 start to the season, despite being in pretty much every game. Markstrom has been at best inconsistent. I actually thought Gudbranson has looked much better than before, especially on breakout passes and getting rid of the puck. The biggest issue with him, Pouliot and MDZ is that they really don’t seem to know how to defend the rush, not so much speed to the outside as crossing into the middle or give-and-go’s. I think Tanev, Edler, Stetcher and even Hutton have been much better. The only silver lining I guess is that these losses give Green more license to sit highly paid underperformers like MDZ (though I would be surprised if he didn’t draw back in next game).

    I agree with your read on Boeser. He’s still laboring to get up to game speed. I think that coupled with adding the extra pounds and other teams keying on him have made him a shadow of the shifty, quick release player who could find open space seemingly so easily that he was the last two years. He’ll get back there; you could even see this game being just a little late.

  • I actually laughed out loud on the replay. The angle showed Aho scoring the third goal and there, behind the net, were Pouliot and Gudbranson without a single Hurricane player with them, watching the goal go into the net. You know you have problems when…The problems on defense go beyond fixability. For much of the defense, it’s not even the physical tools that lack, it’s the mental acumen. They simply don’t read the plays quickly enough, or position themselves properly. They hesitate when they should be aggressive, and pinch when they should retreat. I know I’m generalizing, but I’m still trying to come to terms with that image of Pouliot and Gudbranson standing like they bought standing room tickets to watch the game. The only thing missing was a couple of beers and hotdogs on top of the net. Enough said.

    • LOL. Gudbranson has been terrible ever since he arrived. Top 3 worst trades in Canucks history, and an incomprehensible re-signing by Benning. No puck handling skills, terrible positioning in his own end, and rarely ever a sighting of his much vaunted toughness. And he’s all ours for the next 2 years, because no-one is trading for him. Arggghhhh!

      • I cannot stand Gudbranson. But top 3 worst trades in Canucks history? Neely, the picks that became Wayne Simmonds and Alex Goligoski, all of the trades of the Keenan era, so many others…

        • I didn’t consider trades for picks, because who knows who the Canucks would have chosen. But player for player, obviously Neely, but name 2 more that were worse. McCann is a 6’1″ 190 lb centre who is only 22 and is already playing 15+ minutes a night for Florida. And they got a second as well. We got a bag of pucks.

          • You just said the thing about picks. The 2nd ended up being nothing because Florida flipped it for Mascherin who didn’t sign with them and got redrafted by Dallas. Ang is a pretty even swap for Candella; two moderately useful OHL players. McCann is a decent player and far better than other late first rounders for the Canucks like Gaunce or Shinkaruk, though it’s not clear he’ll top out at beyond a 3rd or 4th line player (which is nothing to sneeze at but we have a pretty decent number of forwards in that range). In the end it ends up being Gudbranson, a glorified fifth defenseman for McCann, who’s a bottom six forward. That’s not nearly as egregious as many other trades we’ve made where I feel like we actually paid a price. Rick Vaive and Bill Derlago for Tiger Williams and Jerry Butler was basically 600 goals for 1000 PIM for example. And Luongo has posted 106 wins and about a .920 average since he got traded for Markstrom (48 wins and about a .905 average in the same period). For all the flack about the Schneider trade, we got a way better return for him than Luongo.

            Again, Gudbranson is not good. He’s overpaid. I think on this we agree. I think we probably don’t have to go beyond that.

          • The Vaive trade was bad, but Tiger did help them get to their first SCF. Which neither Vaive nor Derlago managed. And the Luongo one was bit like the Kesler one, where the Canucks got backed into a corner. I also think McCann might top out a bit higher than a 3rd line guy. But fair enough, I didn’t say anything about picks in my original post. And we certainly agree about Guddy.

  • The team looks so disjointed to me, there seems to be no structure in their play, just lots of mistakes, turnovers and high risk stretch passes from the D and that ultimately falls on the coaching.

    As for goaltending, Jim Benning told us years ago that he builds from the net out, so why did he re-sign Markstrom who isn’t even his guy – this inconsistant sieve is just terrible and Green obvs has no confidence in trying out Nilsson instead. Tampa should be an interesting test…

    • That’s probably why Benning invested a 2nd in Demko in his first draft and picked up DiPietro with a 3rd. Historically, the Canucks never used high picks on goaltenders. Markstrom is just a placeholder until Demko can play next year.

  • What is with the ads on this site? I’m on my iPhone and I constantly get redirected to “you’ve won an Amazon gift card” and I can’t get off the page unless I exit. Such garbage.

  • What a travesty this is turning into already. 12 goals against in two games and this inept idiot Benning chose not to upgrade the D or goalies despite being the worst in the league the past few years wtf.

    Some of you armchair clowns need to realise this has been five years of your life you can never have back. This team under Benning is an utter disaster and it’s about time the excuses and “oh well they suck and he sucks too so it’s ok for us to suck” rhetoric stopped. Totally sick of you pom pom wavers who think this is some sort of joke. THINK about the people actually paying good money to watch this s**t show and show some humility and respect eh.

    Also, Svechnikov looks far better for the Calder than Petterssen who cost us a goal with POOR defensive coverage and Rasmus Dahlin in Buffalo is an absolute blueline beast already… so put down the koolaid stop believing your own fairytales and start calling it like it is ffs – this regime simply has to go after five disastrous years doesn’t it?!

    • breathe EVC, just breathe.

      the rebuild on the fly didn’t work so well. time is what it takes. no we aren’t getting that time back, but you have to go through the process to get the blue chip prospects or the opportunity to draft those prospects.

      JB reminds me of Jim Nabors but with the committee approach to running the club with ownership’s fingerprints on everything, I don’t think changing the GM changes much.

    • lol – my dad was offered cheap tickets for us to go see the Washington game and we all said no thanks. I can’t understand how the GM is keeping his job this long it’s depressing and it’s really not getting any better fir the fans! I used to love watching this team.

      • Why would people say no to watching Ovi? The guys probably the best natural goal scorer of all time. Defending Stanley Cup Champions ta boot. As a hockey fan. This makes no sense to me.

        • Uhh, because we are Vanouver Canucks fans not Washington? I personally don’t wanna go see my team get buried by the Caps and I don’t wanna see Ovi scoring on us at his leisure either. I support Vancouver not any random team because they won the cup. That’s why, and it makes total sense to me.

    • Don’t see anything changing anytime soon, no matter who’s at the helm. Restocking takes time, unfortunately. Developing a winning team will take longer. Suggest you sit back and try to enjoy the ride. Success in the wins column is still a couple of years away.

    • Are you talking about the Buffalo team that got booed off the ice by their fans last week? Also the first year of Desjardins. The Canucks actually we’re a playoff team and actually had a decent regular season. So we’re actually at 3 years and 3 games of rebuild hockey. Last year the team was a lot more exciting to watch. Boeser was great. This year Pettersson is playing great. You gotta finish at the bottom of the standings for a few years. Get your draft picks and work your way back up. Much like Chicago, Pittsburgh and Washington. You don’t get the number 1 overall pick by being good. You get it because you suck. Embrace the suck!!

  • Now I really regret the Canucks not grabbing Pickard off the waiver wire. Can’t wait for the crease and defense to be gutted. I’d rather see Demko, Hughes, Juolevi, and Brisboise as rookies rather than a 3rd year of this crap.

  • The goaltending in the two losses has been abysmal, Nilsson will get a chance soon but I don’t expect much from him either. Demko can’t be ready soon enough. I see some of the usual snark creeping back on here onto individual defencemen but when you are down a goal after whiffing on the first shot it’s hard to com back

      • Yes, Benning signed Miller as it was clear to no one, except Benning, that the team could be turned around quickly.

        As a result of average goaltending, the team lost out on top picks during two historically strong and deep drafts. Benning then announced during a summer season ticket holder meeting he could have traded Miller for a high draft pick, but decided against it. You know, it’s more important to compete for 25th place than rebuild. Ultimately, he watched Miller walk away for nothing.

        Then he totally owned a trade in which he got a Granlund, who is teetering on the verge of waivers. A total win that should show those haters Benning knows what he’s doing.

        Now, once again, the peanut gallery is lamenting Markstrom? It’s so important to have good goaltending, while your team is crap? Didn’t we just spin through this hamster wheel with Miller and a crappy team? Didn’t we just go through the Miller experience in which average goaltending is actually detrimental to a rebuilding team?

        You guys are amazing…

        • The only thing that’s amazing is your ability to twist or outright ignore the facts to suit your narrative. The Canucks made the playoffs the first year that Miller was in net.

  • I have been quite patient with Markstrom. Last year I gave him as much support as a fan can, gave him excuses like, first year as a starter, bad team defence etc. but with the two soft first minute goals in the first three games I’ve had enough. This guy sucks, so hard for any team to play from behind especially when goal challenged. Not sure what the answer is but if he does it again he better get pulled right away.

  • Its only a couple of games, some goalies start slow. See Louongo. Although the tendancy to let in early soft goals does seem to indicate a mental issue. Its tough seeing your team start in a hole every night. But We still need 1 or 2 more high draft picks to make a significant run, so as long as the hockey is entertaining, im ok being patient for another year or two until Dempko or Dipietro are ready.