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Photo Credit: www.canucks.com

Vancouver Canucks at St. Louis Blues Post-Game Recap: Singeing The Blues

The Rundown 

Coming off a 5-3 victory on Thursday against the Nashville Predators, the Vancouver Canucks were riding their most significant wave of momentum in weeks as they prepared to face off against the St. Louis Blues for a Sunday matinee. Vancouver hadn’t won in consecutive games in more than a month and Afternoon matchups have traditionally been tricky for the Canucks’ franchise, but the floundering Blues presented a fantastic opportunity to open up a desperately-needed winning streak—one the Canucks really wouldn’t want to miss.

As always, Jeff Paterson provided the lineups on Twitter. On the Canucks side of things, the only change was Adam Gaudette out an illness, and Tim Schaller replacing him. Jacob Markstrom and Jake Allen were the starting goaltenders in a classic all-Jacob matchup.

 

1st Period 

In fine afternoon form, the Canucks started things off with some shaky play in their own end and three icings in the first 1:14 of the game. The questionable defense continued as Erik Gudbranson made the inexplicable decision to shove Pat Maroon into Jacob Markstrom, an incident that somehow resulted in John Garrett asking for a goaltender interference penalty and John Shorthouse responding with confused silence.

Despite the iffy start, it’d be Vancouver who struck first—and it was a strange one. Brock Boeser appeared to miss a great chance in front after a slick backhand pass from Elias Pettersson in Gretzky’s Office, but his rocket of a shot bounced off the end-glass and then hit Jake Allen before dropping into the net. It was another true testament to the power of Boeser’s shot, and the perfect start for another matinee game full of weirdness.

 

With zero official shots on goal, the Canucks had a 1-0 lead just 2:31 into the first period.

The next moment of significance came when the Canucks’ old friend Jordan Nolan took two sizeable runs at Tim Schaller and Troy Stecher within the span of about 15 seconds. Where’s Tom Sestito when you need him?

The St. Louis Blues received their first powerplay of the game when Gudbranson whacked Alex Steen with an undisciplined high stick—after just missing his head seconds before. The healthy smack drew blood, and Gudbranson sat down for four minutes—or less.

The Canucks began the penalty kill with the 27th-ranked PK in the league, but this time around the Jay Beagle-led corps were up to the challenge and killed off all four minutes with relative ease. The Blues’ powerplay failed to generate a legitimate scoring chance.

After the double minor expired, Pettersson and Boeser hit the ice again, and after Stecher made a nice stick-check to break up a play in the neutral zone, Pettersson took advantage. Taking the puck in stride, Pettersson danced through four Blues defenders and beat Allen with a sharp wrister low on the glove-side. With a goal and an assist just 12:46 into the period, Pettersson moved into a tie with Bo Horvat for the team scoring lead.

 

And he wasn’t done yet.

The next time the top line hit the ice, Ben Hutton forced another Blues turnover at the Canucks’ blueline and Boeser picked it up, allowing he and Pettersson to head off on a two-on-one. Pettersson feathered a great pass over to Boeser, who made no mistake in wiring it past Allen’s questionable glove-hand for the 3-0 lead.

 

That was the end of Allen’s afternoon, with the Canucks’ two offensive superstars conspiring to chase him with just under six minutes remaining in the period. Allen, for the record, was coming off a shutout against the Winnipeg Jets. Pettersson moved into sole possession of the team scoring lead with his 28th point of the season.

He finished the first period with just 3:33 of icetime. That’s efficiency.

The Blues began to become noticeably frustrated as they continued to struggle, with Maroon going after Stecher with some slashes on an icing. Stecher stood his ground and didn’t get suckered into a penalty, and the Canucks continued to control the majority of play for the rest of the period.

 

Intermission Highlight 

Obviously Barkley the Dog.

 

2nd Period 

The Canucks found themselves in a rare circumstance as the second period began, with a three-goal cushion and thus an opportunity to test their defensive mettle. Just over three minutes into the period, the Blues got their best chance of the game as their fourth line crashed the net, but Jacob Markstrom stood tall in his crease. While all this was going on, Jordan Nolan kicked Erik Gudbranson’s legs out from under him, but neither referee appeared to notice.

The game then settled into an uneventful period for either side, and by the halfway mark the most exciting thing to have happened was the Canucks’ Twitter account posting this GIF:

 

The Blues continued to pile on the shots, but generated little in the way of serious chances—and Markstrom was equal to whatever tasks they threw his way.

The Canucks further silenced an already library-esque home crowd with their fourth goal of the game. Bo Horvat banged in an Antoine Roussel rebound to beat Chad Johnson for his 11th road goal of the season—and another tie with Elias Pettersson for the team scoring lead in what was becoming an in-game battle between the two.

 

Pettersson returned fire less than two minutes after Horvat scored. Sitting in his usual spot in the offensive zone, Pettersson corralled a pinballing puck and deftly fed it to Nikolay Goldobin, who found himself facing a wide open net and made no mistake. The Canucks moved into a 5-0 lead and Pettersson moved back into the scoring lead—and the St. Louis crowd’s apparent vow of silence continued.

 

At the 15:25 mark of the second period, the Canucks finally received their first powerplay of the game as Pat Maroon picked up an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty. With the score being what it was, the Canucks’ top unit didn’t appear to have much urgency and a whole lot of nice passing didn’t end up amounting to anything more than two more minutes off the clock.

Horvat nearly tied the scoring lead again as he just missed tapping in a caroming puck with a handful of seconds remaining, but the second period ended with the Canucks enjoying a 5-0 lead—despite the Blues holding a 19-16 edge in shots and 18-9 advantage in hits.

 

Intermission Highlight 

Learning just how effective Bo Horvat is at beaking his own teammates. #CaptainComedy

Also, the complete self-destruction of the St. Louis fanbase:

 

3rd Period 

The Canucks were firmly in unfamiliar territory as they got set to defend a 5-0 in the third period of this Sunday matinee. Instead of coming out flying, the Blues looked like a defeated team, and it wasn’t long before Oskar Sundqvist put the Canucks back on the powerplay with a foolish holding penalty.

The Canucks led with their second unit—complete with Troy Stecher on the point in recognition of both his strong play and Travis Green’s desire to avoid a shorthanded goal against. That mission ended up being accomplished, but the Canucks also didn’t generate a shot during the man advantage.

This conservative mindset set the tone for the rest of the third period. The Canucks did their best to limit the Blues’ offensive opportunities, and the Blues didn’t really press them on the issue. St. Louis failed to capitalize on an ugly Erik Gudbranson turnover at the netside, and it took them over eight minutes to record a shot—but that shot was a significant one.

Jordan Kyrou picked up the puck after a broken passing play and sniped the first goal of his NHL career past Jacob Markstrom. Unfortunately for Markstrom, that was the end of his shutout bid—but not the end of the five-goal lead!

 

40 seconds after the Kyrou goal, the Canucks’ top line turned the momentum into the offensive zone and Elias Pettersson fed Brock Boeser at the point. Boeser fired a hard, low shot—looking for a tip by Josh Leivo—but the puck ended up bouncing off a Blues player and past Chad Johnson, making it a hattrick for Boeser. It was also Pettersson’s fifth point of the night, and 30th of the season.

 

Pettersson’s second five-point game of the season was a fairly significant accomplishment, as it turned out:

 

For many St. Louis fans on Twitter and in the arena, this was the last straw. The game finished without much further incident, and the final score was 6-1.

 

Wrap Up 

There’s nothing to complain about and a lot to get excited about in this dominant start-to-finish victory. To be fair, the St. Louis Blues did not present much of a challenge, but that still doesn’t take away from accomplishments of the Canucks—and Elias Pettersson and Brock Boeser in particular.

It would be unrealistic to expect this sort of play from the franchise’s two offensive centerpieces on a nightly basis quite yet, but this afternoon’s matchup provided fans with another tantalizing preview of what is to come. The future is indeed bright in Vancouver, and games like this will one day be remembered as the earliest indicators that the Canucks had put together something special with their latest rebuild.

 

Advanced Stats

 

Gameflow from Canucks at Blues December 9, 2018 (Courtesy of naturalstattrick.com)

 

Heatmap from Canucks at Blues December 9, 2018 (Courtesy of naturalstattrick.com)

 

Top Performers 

Elias Pettersson

Enough was said about Pettersson in the game description to justify no further text here, but it’s impossible to stop gushing about his performance. Traumatized by years of disappointment, many Canuck fans are still waiting for the other shoe to drop with Pettersson, but that moment just doesn’t appear to be coming. He got five points and made it look easy, and it’s a bit terrifying to think of what he’s going to look like once he gets more comfortable in the NHL.

Brock Boeser

You know it’s a good game for the Canucks when Boeser scores a hattrick and isn’t named the first star. Sure, Boeser was the beneficiary of some pitch perfect passes by Pettersson and some truly fluky bounces, but he still had to put himself in a scoring position on those plays—something Boeser does with an impressive consistency. That’s not to mention the fact that his second goal of the night was a classic Boeser snipe—no flukiness required.

Troy Stecher

Stecher only recorded one assist on the scoresheet, but he was constantly involved in plays that pushed the puck in the right direction for the Canucks. Stecher made a couple of elegant stickchecks in the neutral zone to breakup St. Louis chances before they had a chance to develop, and he was eventually rewarded for his strong play with a spot on the powerplay.

 

Next Game 

The Canucks continue their brief roadtrip on Tuesday, December 11 as they visit Columbus to take on John Tortorella and the Blue Jackets—with a start time of 4:00PM PST.

  • DJ_44

    Great road game. Boeser got the bounce on the first goal, but after that is was all work. While you slag Gudbranson in the first paragraph, he was solid. The Hutton-Gudbranson pairing has been very efficient and are providing a solid second pairing.

    I also really like Leivo with Boeser and Pettersson. He is the skilled, physical player that can scrounge the pucks in the board battles and get to the front of the net. Beagle’s line with Motte and Schaller also deserve props; they were solid.

    Great win.

    • Reality Man

      WTF —— “The Hutton ** pairing has been very efficient and are providing a solid second pairing.” but wait…

      “… and Holm, who I like way more than Hutton will be a solid bottom pair guy with ability and upside.” DJ_44

      “… if you look at MDZ’s game and Hutton’s game, they are very similar. Del Zotto is a better defenceman” – DJ_44

      “Poulliot is an NHL defenseman. Hutton is not.” – DJ_44

      Wow, just wow. Embarrassing.

      • DJ_44

        PQW pulling up the same quotes? Already have given Hutton props…attitude and conditioning. Polliot is an NHL defenceman…so is MDZ…..DelZotto’s problem was terrible penalties and he deserves sitting.

        PQW using the word “embarrassing”. Priceless.

      • Bucket

        The only thing embarrassing here is you man. Seriously. What kind of creep has the time to stalk people on a sports website? Day after day you come on here and antagonize the same people. You clearly have nothing going on in real life as this appears to be the highlight of your day coming on here and doing what you do. There is no way you have a girlfriend/boyfriend that’s impossible as you would never find the time to come on here and sift through people’s old comments and try to call them out on it if you had a partner of any description. But that explains your nature, you are a creep and a stalker who any human in their right mind would run far away from once they figured you out, which isn’t hard because you are a boring and predictable. In fact you are so lonely that you create these handles so that you can engage with yourself clearly because nobody else wants anything to do with you. I suppose this is how you try and stay relevant and feel important as nobody else in your life finds you relevant nor important enough to engage with you.
        And what are you trying to say by calling up these old comments brainiac? Are you suggesting that people cannot accurately predict the future? Duhhhhhh. Thanks for spending so much effort to state the obvious smarty pants! The sad thing is that you are actually quite intelligent and could probably have a lot to offer in a healthy debate with these fans but because of the sadness of your real life you’d rather just be an infantile, irrelevant little creep. I’m sure you’ll come back and try to insult me but let me assure you, if a creepy stalker has a low opinion of me? I promise you I’m ok with that. Do your worst.
        To everyone else on here who is not a creepy stalker, which is everyone else, don’t engage with this juvenile. Just think to yourself how sad their life really is and get that little smile on your face knowing that this idiot cries themselves asleep every night because nobody loves them!
        I’d tell you to grow up but I know that you won’t. Predictable.

        ***crickets***

        • kermit

          Believe it or not, we are his social life. Facebook doesn’t work for people with no friends. You have to see his comments as click bait, he’s wants a reaction, for him, even getting a trash is better than nothing. His existence is some sort of perverse “I troll, therefore I am”. If CA isn’t going to do anything, then the only solution is to starve him out, no responses, no trashes, just leave him there circle jerking with his own posse of aliases.

        • Wanda Fuca

          It’s all true but we should heed the advice from TheRealPB and stop engaging with this multi-troll, because it feeds on positive and negative attention equally. The onus is really on site management for allowing toxic comments to be posted here without removal, and for not banning the perps. What does that say about them? To me, it suggests either indifference or – worse – tacit approval. And that is why I rarely offer comments and in fact rarely visit this site anymore. Fact is, I often feel bad or anxious or mildly upset after scrolling through the comment section, and I just don’t have time for this in my life. This is, of course, exactly what the troll wants: to inflict misery on others. Only a lonely and twisted psyche would want to do this to other people (“normal” people), and engaging in debate with it does not change this reality. That CA allows this to go in is disgraceful. Hint to everyone: they don’t allow this behaviour at Pass It To Bulis, and Daniel is a better writer than anyone here. Funnier, too. It’s pretty obvious that CA isn’t going to clean house so long as the hits keep coming, so I’ve been gradually weaning myself away from CA and going to PITB first. It’s kind of sad because this used to be such a great site. But in the immortal words of Todd Bertuzzi, it is what it is -and these days it ain’t much fun. I think it’s time to leave the troll under his bridge. CA admins might just wake up, scratch their heads, figure out that this isn’t what Canucks fans want, and make some changes.

    • canuckfan

      Blues watched some pretty crappy goals go in and after the fourth goal they just packed it in. Good for the Canucks to get that goal to put the stake through the heart of the blues. Could have been different if the Blues got a goal to make it 3-1.

      • TD

        I felt a little sorry for Allen. The first goal bouncing off the glass, back over the net and in off his pad despite having backed up almost to his goal line. The second goal was deflected by his own d man and then getting pulled after his d allow the pass to the middle and Boeser scores on a quick goal from the slot. I don’t think he was to blame on any of the goals.

  • wojohowitz

    The Pettersson goal was really sweet. The defenseman backed off because he didn`t want to look Matheson stupid by letting Pettersson walk around him and that gave Petey enough room for a perfect wrist shot. The word is out; Don`t let Petey walk around you.

  • crofton

    ” There’s nothing to complain about”. And yet you did. Gudbranson’s penalty was undisciplined? More like accidental. And later…an ugly Gudbranson turnover. And …questionable defense? Hmmm. Where’s Tom Sestito when you need him? Did they need him? how about Jake laying out a couple of Blues? Oh. you’re supposed to drop the gloves when legal checks are delivered? Two other things…when the score is 5-0 and the other team scores, it IS the end of the 5 goal lead, not matter how quick the response. And “some pitch perfect passes by Pettersson”? It’s PICTURE perfect

      • bobbert

        agreed, why is this kind of verbal abuse tolerated against a young CA writer who is trying his best to do a good job for free. This is online bullying, way beyond banter or constructive criticism. Sad to see it tbh.

        • TD

          I think a lot of the readers have been inundated with ongoing negativity in some of the articles, mainly from some writers that are no longer with CA. I can include myself in being critical of unwarranted negativity. I thought the Canucks played a great game and limited St. Louis’ chances. 23 shots against should lead to praise regarding how well the team played defensively. I also didn’t think Gudbranson’s high stick was careless. He was trying to keep an elevated puck in on a pinch. The general rule has always been that the follow through on a shot is not a highstick, such as the Bryan Berard eye injury. Gudbranson may not get a penalty if he made contact with the puck, although he was trying to hit the puck out of the air instead of shooting.

          I like the blog, but the constant negativity from some writers made some of the readers sensitive to the criticisms. Most of the readers are fans and want to celebrate the successes and not focus on the negative. I am not saying Stephan wrote the article that way, but many in the past have seemed to have that focus.

        • bobbert

          Yeah, that Crofton mill totallyreeks, and this sc*mbag is stinking up the joint here, that’s for sure.

          So who the hell is trashing me for calling out this coward? So, you think it’s ok to cyber bully and put down a young CA writer like this??? Explain…

          • bobbert

            Get a life crofton, you think every poster with an altermative opinion is this pqw, think again.

            Now, explain why it’s ok to cyber bully a CA writer and slaughter him three posts on a row like that?… come on tough guy, what makes it ok to do that??????????????????????????

          • crofton

            Cyber bullying. That really makes me laugh. Pointing out his deficiencies and mistakes may have been unnecessary, but there were too many for me to ignore. One thing it is not, is cyber bullying. And if you’re not PQW, you’re cut from the same mold

  • Bwest

    When I first saw Pettersson play at the beginning of the season I commented to friends that his style of play was reminiscent of Gretzky even if Gretzkyesk point totals and dominance was out of the question. I’m not sure about that now. What is this kid’s ceiling? He’s still learning the NHL game and at 161 lbs he’s not likely at man strength yet. What will he be like when he’s 23? This is going to be fun to watch.

    • truthseeker

      I agree it will be fun to watch but let’s not get carried away just yet. Gretzkyesk point totals are still out of the question. For everyone. EP would need to be scoring like Rantanen is right now to be Gretzkyesk. And Rantanen would need to be producing about double the rate he is at to be Gretzkyesk.

    • Killer Marmot

      Even a young Gretzky would not be capable of Gretzyesk point totals in today’s league. The 1980s were a particularly good time to run up points. Goalies and goal equipment was smaller, defensive play was not as sophisticated nor as valued, and the quality of players was watered down due to league expansion and the fact that the majority of players still came from one country.

      Still, I think 140 points is within reach for a wildly talented player.

      • truthseeker

        That’s all probably true, but I still think the “Gretzky Gap” would be in effect. It wasn’t like there were guys getting close to 200 points when he did it.

        Guys like Crosby, and McDavid are today’s equivalent to guys like Dionne, Sakic and Yzerman. Damn good. Better than almost everyone else, but still in the same ball park.

        I hate what if’s but I do believe that if 99 was playing today and a good “Crosby” type season is say, 120 to 140 points, Gretz would be up around the 170’s. He would “gap” his competition just like he did back then.

        I really would love EP to be the “next Gretzky” and be that guy to put up 150+ point seasons when everyone else is around 130, but at this point nobody gets the benefit of the doubt before they actually do it.

        • TD

          Great comment, that’s always my first thought about Gretkzyks totals. He it was easier to score in the 80’s, but no one was close to Gretzky then. The next best players were 50 or more points back.

          • Cageyvet

            Yes, that’s the measuring stick for greatness. Not how anyone would stack up now, but how dominant they were in their era. Gretzky is still top of the heap, but I can’t help but be excited by the shot of EP. Gretzky didn’t need a shot like that to be lethal, but he would have been even more dangerous if he’d had that in his arsenal. I’m sold on this kid, whatever his point totals, he sure looks like a bona fide superstar.

          • Tedchinook

            Not really true – you’re forgetting Mario Lemieux. He won some scoring titles in the 80’s when Gretzky was still great. The two of them were head and shoulders above everyone else in that era. Gretzky was 1, but Lemieux was 1A

          • TD

            Lemieux did put up great numbers, but that kind of proves the point. Most people consider Gretzky, Lemieux and Orr to be the three best players ever. Gretzky and Lemieux during the late 80’s put up point totals far above the rest. In the 14 years between 81-82 and 93-94, Gretzky won the scoring title 10 times and Lemieux won 4 times (Lemieux won two more after Jagr’s first). No one else could compete with Gretzky or both of them once Lemieux hit his prime. After Jagr completed his run in 01-02, the NHL did not have a back to back Art Ross winner until McDavid in the last two seasons. McDavid beat Giroux by 6 points and Kucherov by 8 points last year and beat Crosby and Kane by 11 points the year before. McDavid’s number don’t separate himself in the same manner.

          • truthseeker

            Yeah I didn’t forget Mario at all. He was dominant. And more so than the “Yzerman” types…but he was still a cut below Gretzky. That 199 season was pretty crazy though.

      • Don’t forget Gretzky played before significant goaltender techniques were adopted: butterfly saves, paddle down on wrap arounds, and reverse-V against the post. Goaltenders back in the day were still emulated styles from the 1920’s. No way that Gretzky scores as much against today’s goaltenders.

          • Yes I did. I was adding to KM’s comment “Goalies and goal equipment was smaller…”, I think NHL play really changed after successful goaltenders introduced new techniques (e.g. Roy’s butterfly, Belfour’s paddle-down, Quick’s reverse-V). The run-and-gun scoring really started to taper off in the 1990’s as those techniques started to filter down to the junior levels and goaltenders were taught them as foundational skills.

          • Just to add to my thought, if you follow the Hockey Reference here (https://www.hockey-reference.com/leagues/stats.html) and graph the league averages for goals per game, you’ll GPG slowly trending down from 1985-1986 (4.0 GPG) but significantly change to current trends after 1992-1993 (3.2 GPG, the year Montreal won the Cup, any coincidence?). League scoring was at its worse between 1997 and 2003, averaging less than 2.7 GPG.

          • TD

            Defensive structure improved dramatically after the Devils successes winning cups which cut down the goals as well. On the flip side, the players skates are night and day different than in the 80’s and the sticks allow almost every player to rip pucks on stride compared to the wooden sticks of the 80’s.

          • truthseeker

            Again…goalies and defensive structure don’t explain the gap Gretzky had on his competition and how nobody since (aside from Mario’s 199 season) has ever come close to dominating their competition like he did.

          • No doubt, Gretzky was extremely skilled and I’m not taking anything away from him there. But he was in a unique situation. Edmonton was a stacked team with Messier, Kurri, Andersen, Coffey; they were nearly unstoppable and probably would have won more Cups if not for Pocklington’s greed. But that kind of depth plus having virtually no checking because Semenko would pummel your face gave Gretzky a lot of space to move around. Add to that the fact that goaltending was pretty much crap until Roy revolutionized the position gave Gretzky a perfect storm in which he thrived. And that rising tide lifted all boats, that’s why individual scoring was so high then compared to now, even though modern day superstars like McDavid or Crosby are, in my mind, superior players in nearly every facet (e.g. strength, speed, shooting accuracy, play). I mean, Gretzky was dominating in the dinosaur, good ole’ boy age where chain smoking and drinking beer between periods was acceptable.

    • canuckfan

      I wouldn’t trade Sven I would trade Goldobin and if we got a good offer for Sutter we should take it. Not that I don’t like Sutter he just gets injured too much and at some point that will catch up to him.

      • Puck Viking

        The point in moving Edler, Tanev, Gudbranson, Sven and Sutter is we are a bottom 5 team in the league and we need to rebuild the defense. Keeping the players until they have zero value is does nothing for the long term success of this team. Move them for defense prospects or picks to draft defense. We can add a couple stop gaps this off season and we are adding Hughes.

        Every year this team ignores the train wreck that is the defense is another year wasted of Bo, Brock and Pete.

        • bobdaley44

          Move them and see what happens. They’ll get kicked every night and you’ll ingrain a losing culture you may never get out of. Nothing like a team full of twenty-year olds. A recipe for disaster. You think it’s a coincidence that they’re playing better since Edler and Beagle came back?

      • Puck Viking

        But yes Sven or Gold, I trade which ever gives me a higher draft pick as I believe neither will be here in 3 years when we are hopefully good again which wont happen if JB sits by doing nothing. Goldy and Tryamkin being friends is also a plus for keeping him for another season or 2.

          • Puck Viking

            We need defense maybe he could bring back a similar aged defenseman. Him or Sven dont care which but whatever brings the highest return. Like I said I think Gold would be best to keep for the Tryamkin factor.

            Then when you factor in Dahlen(next season), LE(Cant deal him), Zacmac, Roussel, Boeser, JV, Leivo, Perhaps a Kakko or Hughes.. you start to run out of wing spots pretty quick which makes either Sven or Gold a player who can bring back a pick which we could use to draft a defenseman.

          • Bud Poile

            Baertschi is on concussion five or six.
            I’d let him play back to prominence and deal him at the TDL.
            Hughes and Juolevi revitalise the LHD next season.
            Erik Karlsson would be a proper RHD mentor.
            Rathbone,Woo and the defensive prospect pool can learn from the best.

          • Because in a year, after signing an inflated contract, Goldobin will still be a huge defensive liability and useless with EP. Then the media will begin to apply the “enigma” cliche/label to rationalize. Ugh, just use his single dimension as trade incentive and invest in a more reliable, well-rounded player.

          • canuckfan

            Agree that he has made great strides this year. But he still doesn’t quite fit. He is only able to play on the top two lines as he has more offense and not enough defense. Perhaps he will get back with Brock and Pettersson but we see how having a bigger player who gets in front of the net and digs on the boards has given that line a whole new look for the better.
            Sven at least can move up and down the lineup and could make that first line even harder to play against.
            I like Goldobin but doesn’t really seem to put out 100 percent effort and when he doesn’t he is really noticed floating out there not engaged.

          • Defenceman Factory

            Goldobin has been the best option to play in the top 6 and is getting better. Will he ever be one of the top 10 or 15 LWers in the league? I have serious doubts. Moving Goldobin or Baertschi would need to be part of a strategy to land a significant upgrade to make moving either worthwhile. Getting those upgrades is the right thing to do. Pettersson and Horvat will excel even more if the wingers around them are the best possible.

            Agree on a hard no for Karlsson. It’s time to get this rebuild finished and signing very expensive players to lengthy contracts that end well after age 35 isn’t the right approach to round out the D ranks.

          • wjohn1925

            I still have doubts about Goldy longterm. It’s hard to learn ‘compete’ and I’m not convinced that he will get the message. Sometimes wingers need to dig and fight along the boards. He ‘digs’ by trying to poke the puck out with his stick and rarely gets body position. He’s truly gifted with his passes and that goal yesterday was fantastic. I’m convinced he wants to improve his defensive game, but he simply doesn’t seem to put in enough energy to get the puck. When have you ever seen him seriously dig to get back a puck that he lost? I’m not sure that he will be around in a few years when other wingers have come up from the minors or been signed from elsewhere. On the other hand, he’s clearly got a good friend in Petey, who was seriously happy for Goldy when he scored (not everyone gets a bear hug from the Swede). We’ll see.

  • Kanuckhotep

    It’s blatantly obvious Brock should play with Petey pretty much from now on. One third of all EP’s points this season have come in just 2 games. Delightfully scary, isn’t it? Canucks played their typical hard hustle game this afternoon. The difference again was getting some well deserved bounces. And one by one guys are coming back from injuries, only waiting on Baer amd Sutter now. Eddie and Tani reliable veteran D pair. Good to see Green put them back together.

  • TheRealPB

    Enjoyable game (two in a row!). Of course the EP and Boeser show was excellent, but I thought you were too hard on Gudbranson. That was not an “undisciplined high stick” it was a careless follow-through — the same thing a Blues player did to Tanev later in the game and somehow didn’t get called. The PK looks miles better with Beagle taking the pressure off Horvat for d-zone draws. For all that I too have wondered about his signing or Sutter or Gudbranson, the way the team looks with some of them back in and looking comfortable is really different than when it was Bo vs. the World. The domino effect is really noticeable — Horvat is playing nearly 7 minutes less than at his peak (!) and not taking 25-30 face-offs a game (!) so there are two actual scoring lines pushing play (and I thought Goldobin looked miles better today), and Boeser and EP are averaging about five minutes less a game. They all look so much fresher. Pouliot still is an adventure at times but that Stetcher-Pouliot pairing looks better than MDZ on there. I still think Biega might be subbed in for him. Motte once again impressed me with his hustle, as he does most games. The Blues looked horrific, outside of Kyrou and maybe Payrayko.

    • kermit

      Parayko hitting Tanev in the face was a follow-through on a shot, which is normally not a penalty. Gudbranson’s high stick on Steen was in the midst of a board battle, which is a penalty. But I agree that the Gudbranson comments were unfairly critical of his play today.

      • TheRealPB

        Meh, maybe — but most of the time I’ve been watching or listening to hockey, these things are distinct. A high stick is usually waving your stick around, not the result of going after the puck. But you’re right, it’s probably splitting hairs. The bigger point is that I don’t actually think that Gudbranson had a particularly bad game and he looks much better this season than I feel he has at any time since he became a Canuck.

        • Beer Can Boyd

          No doubt. I was his biggest critic, but I’m happy to admit I was wrong. He’s a solid #4 guy, and the Canucks are a distinctly better team with him and Beagle in the lineup.

        • truthseeker

          oh for sure. I agree with you…he’s been playing well this year and it’s very nice to see. Hopefully he can keep it up and even improve more. If he can be a solid second pairing guy that would be huge for the team.

      • kermit

        I looked at that over and over after the game myself. The overhead shot looks like it’s Leivo’s, but that’s if the puck is waist high. In another angle the puck looks to be lower. It’s very hard to tell. Brock had the best view of it and he seemed to think it hit a St Louis player. Then again, the players tend to leave these things to the scorekeepers and just accept that they sometimes make mistakes.

        • Bud Poile

          It hit Leivo in the lower chest. He told Boeser on the bench but the goal remained his.
          This is what Leivo said after the game:
          “I’m probably just going to go to the net and let him(Petey) pass to Boeser and hopefully it hits me or I can screen the goalie.”

  • wjohn1925

    Overall a great effort by the team. I’m not quite sure how to evaluate the performance given that the Blues (for much of the game) looked despondent and lacking in confidence. One thing we can say about the Canucks is that, despite some long stretches of losing, they never seemed to quit like the Blues did today. That was a sad performance by the Blues. I’m really liking the Petey, Boeser, Leivo combination. No points for Leivo, but he does a lot of things to make the other two go. Lots of good players today! Couldn’t be happier!

  • LACANUCK

    Ok! This forcing names has to stop! The Flow is awful. Doesn’t make sense. Dekey Pete or anything similar is stupid! EP40 is cool, BUT!
    Since Brock and Elias are both healthy and have a connection….
    Boesr-Sson! They are the future and the future is bright-erSson

    • Cageyvet

      I’m with you. I roll with what the players use, and apparently it’s Petey. Fine with me. Dekey Pete sounds stupid, EP40 sounds like a football moniker. Any nickname should be organic, not forced. Who’d have picked Shotgun Jake? It’s way better that it just happened after him being around for a while than something we pasted to him out of the gate.

      • Bud Poile

        In Gretzky’s rookie year in the NHL he scored 137 points.
        So did Dionne.
        LaFleur had 125 pts..
        8 players had 100 + pts. that season.
        Last season there were three.
        The season before that there was one.
        One in 2015-2016.
        Jamie Benn led the NHL in scoring in 2014-15 with 87 points.
        Petey is scoring at a 1.15 PPG pace or 95 pts over 82 games.
        Prior to his head injury and concussion Petey scored 10 pts in his first 7 NHL games.
        That is a 1.43 PPG pace or 117 pts. over 82 games.
        Rookie.European.Playing center in the NHL.19 years old.Suffered a concussion and has had to recover best he can from it while playing against NHL first and second liners.
        109 points and Petey wins the NHL scoring race last season.

        • LTFan

          Bud – when Gretzky, Dionne and LaFleur were playing it was a different game. As an Edmonton fan said to me – about 10 years ago – Gretzky still would have been good – but only half as good as he was. 200 points – we will never see it again.

  • Kanuckhotep

    Yeah, let’s not have a Name the Superstar contest. Deked Pete, the Alien and the Flow are clearly bogus. EP40 sounds like some vitamin supplement someone tries to flog on a late night infomercial. Nicknames and street names are always spontaneous and never planned anyways. In hockey it’s very hard to top sobriquets like The Great One, the Magnificent One, Mr. Hockey, the Russian Rocket and the Finnish Flash. Ovechkin is Ovie, Stamkos is Stammer and Sakic is Burnaby Joe. So Petey it is and Petey it shall remain. At least to me anyways.

  • Beer Can Boyd

    Hischier, Patrick, Heiskanen and Makar all are or will be very good NHL players, but I think every one of those GMs would change their pick in hindsight. The kid is simply off the charts.

    • bobbert

      Woahhhhh, hold your horses there, way too early to tell on this! Let’s at least see what happens when it counts, in the playoffs, when the stakes and play are a lot higher. Petey is obviously going to take us single-handedly into the post season so not long to wait eh!

      • Defenceman Factory

        It’s all well and good to wait a few years to definitively say who the best player is from a draft year but I agree with Beer Can. Today it sure looks like Pettersson was the best from 2017.

        • petey 40

          Personally I am more interested in the team ethic and challenging for a Stanley Cup rather than individual accolades or who won a draft and i would bet Petey feels exactly the same way. One player won’t make a difference to achieving that goal, ask McDavid or Tavares!

          • Missing Burr

            Yawnnnnn who cares DUD… there is something really weird and creepy about a sad old man fawning over a teenager like this… who YOU actually want playing in Sweden or Utica, right?

            Now, answer the questions, WHO traded for your whipping boy Goldy and were YOU cheering for the Vancouver Canucks between April 2008 and the 2011 SC run?… waiting.

          • Bud Poile

            PQW on the day the Canucks drafted Petey:

            “What a f***ing tool you are. The Sedins will be retired by the time this WIMP comes over from Sweden. This is an awful pick over Glass and Vilardi and you know it.
            How many ids have you signed in as on this thread trolling your same tired bs let’s see – Bud Poile, Carl Jung, Aguaymanto, Canuck4Life20, RoCkFaTheR and ned. ALL YOU 100 per cent!!! Pathetic tw^t.”

          • Missing Burr

            Could we get an actual link to see who posted that Dud?… but i digress, whoever it was, they were bang on about the Sedins retiring and Peterssen being a wimp weren’t they… Bud? dud?……. DUD?!

            Nexttttttttttttttt

  • Bud Poile

    PQW still living in Gillis’ basement,running tapes from 2011 with Benning’s face on his dart board.
    Impossible for this banned troll to support this Canucks team.

  • Puck Viking

    The Blues have loads of talent up front. I wonder is there is some dressing room issues there similar to ottawa last season. I actually thought with that forward group they would be a top 4 team in the west but they probably have the worst goaltending in the NHL.

  • truthseeker

    I wouldn’t say that. They have very good talent up front, their key pieces are mid twenties so still plenty of time, and their cap space looks good. If they keep Pietrangelo, he’ll be the backbone of a solid D and if they trade him the return will be huge, guaranteed with young top end D pieces coming back for him.

    I wouldn’t write them off just yet. They’re in much better shape as a franchise than teams like the Hawks or Kings.

  • Defenceman Factory

    Two of the most dominant personality traits of trolls are narcissism and sadism. Drawing attention to themselves while making others feel bad gives them joy. The insults and conceit are to be expected. They are borne out of a sense of inadequacy.

    Best to just ignore and feel sorry for the tormented soul who acts that way. They must be very sad.

  • DogBreath

    Why does Ryan o’reilly lose wherever he goes? He’s a great player, no doubt. But from Colorado to Buffalo to STL, the guy only knows losing teams? Unlucky? Or part of the problem?