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Photo Credit: Anne-Marie Sorvin - USA TODAY Sports

Canucks Army Game Day 47 – Canucks Vs. Panthers (The Last Lu Edition)

THE INTRO

Remember last game? Pepperidge Farm remembers. I sure don’t. The Sportsnet debacle kept many of our eyes away from what sounded like a very unexciting match. Tonight, the Canucks welcome the Panthers and an old friend, Roberto Luongo, to Rogers Arena. Both teams are wedged in the bottom-five of their respective conferences and a playoff run from either team is a pipe dream.

A renewed energy will be in the arena tonight as it may very well be Luongo’s final game in Vancouver as an active NHLer.

Oh, and there will be some kind of retribution for the Mike Matheson incident when he tried to dismantle the only good thing the Canucks have held onto this season. These previews are sure getting dark.

Let’s Do This!™

TV / RADIO / PUCK DROP

SNP / SN 650 / 4:00 PM

LINEUPS

Josh Leivo skated yesterday and has a shot to play tonight. He was on the 2nd PP unit so that’s a good sign right there. Elias Pettersson skated as well but Travis Green said he isn’t suiting up. Adam Gaudette, Michael Del Zotto, Tim Schaller, and Alex Biega were all extras. At least Nikolay Goldobin gets to hang around but continuing to aid and abed Markus Granlund’s progression seems a bit rich.

Might this be the first Thatcher Demko start of the season? Wait and see.

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Canucks lines courtesy of Dailyfaeoff.com:

LW C RW Forwards
Nikolay Goldobin
NIKOLAY GOLDOBIN

Rating: 69.9#115 LW

Bo Horvat
BO HORVAT

Rating: 75.2#46 C

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Brock Boeser
BROCK BOESER

Rating: 82.1#3 RW

FL1 Rating
Rating: 75.76#25 FL1
Sven Baertschi
SVEN BAERTSCHI

Rating: 73.9#37 LW

Adam Gaudette
ADAM GAUDETTE

Rating: 71.3#127 C

Jake Virtanen
JAKE VIRTANEN

Rating: 71.4#79 RW

FL2 Rating
Rating: 72.20#25 FL2
Antoine Roussel
ANTOINE ROUSSEL

Rating: 70.8#100 LW

Brandon Sutter
BRANDON SUTTER

Rating: 70.9#146 C

Markus Granlund
MARKUS GRANLUND

Rating: 70.4#94 RW

FL3 Rating
Rating: 70.67#28 FL3
Loui Eriksson
LOUI ERIKSSON

Rating: 70.6#103 LW

Jay Beagle
JAY BEAGLE

Rating: 67.4#193 C

Tyler Motte
TYLER MOTTE

Rating: 68.6#118 RW

FL4 Rating
Rating: 68.89#31 FL4
DEFENSIVE PAIRINGS Defense
Alexander Edler
ALEXANDER EDLER

Rating: 75.8#22 LD

Chris Tanev
CHRIS TANEV

Rating: 71.6#65 RD

DL1 Rating
Rating: 73.70#22 DL1
Ben Hutton
BEN HUTTON

Rating: 70.1#112 LD

Erik Gudbranson
ERIK GUDBRANSON

Rating: 68.4#102 RD

DL2 Rating
Rating: 69.24#30 DL2
Derrick Pouliot
DERRICK POULIOT

Rating: 70.3#107 LD

Troy Stecher
TROY STECHER

Rating: 71.8#62 RD

DL3 Rating
Rating: 71.05#23 DL3

Derek MacKenzie is out with a bum shoulder; surgery will keep him out for some time. Vincent Trochek is also out long-term, potentially the season after a serious leg injury in November. Nick Bjugstad is still out and isn’t likely to play tonight. Mike Matheson is in but maybe not for long.

Roberto Luongo will start for the Panthers.

Panthers lines courtesy of Dailyfaceoff.com:

LW C RW Forwards
Jonathan Huberdeau
JONATHAN HUBERDEAU

Rating: 78.0#17 LW

Aleksander Barkov
ALEKSANDER BARKOV

Rating: 81.1#15 C

Evgenii Dadonov
EVGENII DADONOV

Rating: 78.3#17 RW

FL1 Rating
Rating: 79.15#9 FL1
Mike Hoffman
MIKE HOFFMAN

Rating: 75.2#31 LW

Henrik Borgstrom
HENRIK BORGSTROM

Rating: 73.0#83 C

Denis Malgin
DENIS MALGIN

Rating: 71.8#73 RW

FL2 Rating
Rating: 73.34#16 FL2
Frank Vatrano
FRANK VATRANO

Rating: 73.2#81 LW

Juho Lammikko
JUHO LAMMIKKO

Rating: 71.2#133 C

Troy Brouwer
TROY BROUWER

Rating: 68.8#115 RW

FL3 Rating
Rating: 71.06#26 FL3
Jayce Hawryluk
JAYCE HAWRYLUK

Rating: 73.3#49 LW

Colton Sceviour
COLTON SCEVIOUR

Rating: 71.0#141 C

Micheal Haley
MICHEAL HALEY

Rating: 68.5#119 RW

FL4 Rating
Rating: 70.93#10 FL4
DEFENSIVE PAIRINGS Defense
Michael Matheson
MICHAEL MATHESON

Rating: 72.3#64 LD

Aaron Ekblad
AARON EKBLAD

Rating: 74.2#30 RD

DL1 Rating
Rating: 73.24#23 DL1
Keith Yandle
KEITH YANDLE

Rating: 76.8#14 LD

Mark Pysyk
MARK PYSYK

Rating: 70.9#81 RD

DL2 Rating
Rating: 73.80#16 DL2
Bogdan Kiselevich
BOGDAN KISELEVICH

Rating: 72.7#59 LD

MacKenzie Weegar
MACKENZIE WEEGAR

Rating: 71.0#76 RD

DL3 Rating
Rating: 71.87#14 DL3

 

YOUR INFORMATIONAL NEEDS FOR TONIGHT’S GAME

  • Since the Christmas break, goal scoring has been a problem for the Canucks. Elias Pettersson leads the team with five goals, Baertschi has returned and put three on the board but it gets grim after that. Only five other players have scored in these past seven games with Brock Boeser netting two of the remaining six goals that were scored. Yikes!
  • Even with a better than expected start, like many players on the Canucks this season, Erik Gudbranson has returned to form and has once again become a major liability to the Canucks. Combined with Ben Hutton, they have been on the ice for the most goals-against of any defensive pairing in the league at 5v5 with 35 GA. 315 possible defensive pairings and that is hands-down the worst. The eye test and the analytics are saying the same thing: please trade Guddy.
  • Getting back to Christmas, the Canucks are tied with the Ducks with 14 goals-for, worst in the NHL since Dec 25. Vancouver has won 3 of 7 in that time and has been shutout for the identical amount of games. The Canucks are one confusing club. Travis Green has an uphill battle until season’s end. Good luck.
  • Vancouver is 27th in the league for team giveaways with 340, not the kind that comes out of a t-shirt cannon. It’s an impressive number because their CA is in the top third for most allowed so they don’t have the puck that often but apparently they aren’t forcing it over either.
  • The Canucks are still one of the NHL’s best in the 2nd period. That is where Vancouver does their business in the net. The Capitals lead the league with 62-second period goals while the Canucks tied for eighth with 49. Florida also does their best work in the 2nd frame and are tied for fourth with 54 tallies. Don’t worry if you miss the first period tonight, all the action will happen in the middle of the game.

MY 94 CENTS

I’d be happy actually seeing tonight’s game if Sportsnet would be so kind, maybe they’ll even have it on a backup channel, you know, just in case. If this truly is Roberto Luongo’s final game in Vancouver and one of his final games in the NHL then it was a run we’ll never forget. He was a superstar when he got to Vancouver and he became All-World thereafter.

The contract, the double-OT “stinker”, the dragon, and everything else in between, Roberto Luongo was a legend in B.C. and as his time winds down we can only cherish the final moments he shares with us.

As far as the game goes, goals are seemingly hard to come by lately unless your name is Sven Baertschi. It’s time to see a change with this team because Elias Pettersson isn’t playing tonight and when he comes back it’s unlikely he scores every remaining goal for the Canucks.

I’ll be happy with OT in this one.

THE FINAL WORD



  • myshkin

    the canucks are going nowhere without a healthy EP. they have to put major hurt on matheson this game. seeing matheson pounded into oblivion will bring me much more happiness than winning the game.

    • El Cid

      What? and I get trashed for that comment! The fact is Stinky Pete is the Nuckleheads! Like it or not even the Oilers can’t help you now. The race for the bottom is on and only Benning can keep Hughes away.

  • Rodeobill

    I didnt like the Matheson hit then, but he has made apologies and time has past. The time for retribution has past on that one IMO. Unless something new happens, its time to let it go and focus on whats happening here and now, since that hit I have been mostly happy with the team spirit and how we are starting to look out for each other.

  • Matheson must pay.
    Tonight would be the right time for former Panther Erik Gudbranson to net a Gordie Howe hat trick, if you know what I mean.

    Panthers should do the right thing and healthy scratch him. That would certainly diffuse this situation. Too bad something like this has to stain the last game played here by a great goalie, Roberto Luongo.

  • wojohowitz

    You want bloodsport – you ain`t going to get it. Matheson +/- is -22. Gudbranson -21. Neither are NHL players and both will be FAs looking for contracts in a couple of years.

    • Heffy

      So you’re saying the more Matheson plays, the better it is for the Canucks? Instead of Matheson, maybe Guddy should go after Barkov – we benefit three ways – Matheson plays, Barkov is out, and so is Guddy!

  • Kanuckhotep

    The 7th to 11th place teams in our conference are separated by 3 pts at the moment so I can’t see where considering making the play offs is such a pipe dream for the Canucks, who are 11th. Along with the VC many teams have been struggling in the west so the post season isn’t completely quixotic an idea. The difference between these aforementioned struggling teams and the elite clubs is depth. We need Goldy, Shotgun, Granlund and other secondary scorers to step up in support of Bo, Brock and Petey if we’re going to make it. Maybe they won’t make it but it’ll be close.

    • truthseeker

      You’re right, it’s not a pipe dream at all.

      His wording is a bit strange. “playoff run” implies they will make the playoffs but won’t go deep. But I think he means what you are saying; that they don’t have a chance at making the playoffs.

      If that’s the case, personally I think it’s probably another example of some people having the “stats blinders” on. Most of this “they won’t make the playoffs” talk comes from looking at previous season’s point totals that got teams in and then assuming it’s going to be around that number again this year. I get the reasoning but it’s just not a sound conclusion to make especially when it’s pretty obvious the entire western conference from Dallas on down is not very good. Over half a season has been played and nothing suggests that any of those teams are going to suddenly go on some huge run and separate. Especially down where we are.

      Maybe this year 85 points gets you in. Maybe worse. You never know.

      The other point that the critics will use is all the “games in hand” other teams have over the canucks. Well…they’ve pretty much all caught up now and we’re still on the borderline. All the teams are with in a game or two of each other (with the exception of the Blues), so again, you never know.

      Personally I think that bad losing streak will probably be the thing that ends up costing us a playoff spot, but you’re right. It’s going to be close. And think about this, EP comes back and re stabilizes the team, and at the end of the season they sign Hughes and he gets the last few games in. Maybe a solid contributor from the back end will be the final small piece that gets us in. Could be very interesting.

    • Killer Marmot

      I’ve never figured out how they determine the cap recapture. Suppose Luongo retires in June 2021, with one year remaining on his contract. Then…

      Total cap hit during contract: $58,666,667
      Total salary paid during contract: $63,000,000

      So yeah, recapture the difference of $4,333,333. That makes sense. How they get $8,520,373 is beyond me.

      • DogBreath

        How the Canucks could register a legitimate contract (Luongo) with the league and then have the league turnaround and punish the Canucks after the fact, is beyond me. It’s bush. I don’t understand why this isn’t in court.

        • jaybird43

          I agree.

          However, New Jersey was granted an exemption from the league under similar circumstances. But I think that happened when favourite league child Lou Lamourillo was running the show there. Perhaps the same courtesy will be accorded the Canucks …

        • Defenceman Factory

          Do you think Gillis might have deliberately defied Bettman? Maybe told him to pound sand after exploiting a loophole. Who would ever expect Bettman to be vindictive?

          Those type of contracts were horrible and I’m not surprised Bettman ended them.

          • DogBreath

            He couldn’t have defied him because each contract gets reviewed by the league. They have final say. So to approve, then change the rules and punish the team after doesn’t make any sense. My hunch is everyone finds a clean way out, but if not, I’d sue the league.

      • Larionov18

        If he retires this Summer. Canucks will be on the hook for 2.8 mill for 3 years.If he retires in 2020 then the hit will be 4.2 for 2 years. if in 2021 then it will be 8.5 for one year.

      • El Cid

        Even your clown writers say you are not paying for Long Ago? Cap geek says otherswise and I am a gentleman when when Cat comments but when The green bastards Granny gurgles I say dentures out thats how daddy likes it!

      • jaybird43

        He’s not walking away from that. The cap hit is much different than how the contract was layered. As I recall it, the last 2 or 3 years were declining amounts, such that I think his final year paid only about $1 million. The first 6-8 years of his contract were the major paydays.

        • truthseeker

          You’re right, my mistake. It’s actually 3.6 million over the last 3 years in real dollars.

          Would you walk away from 3.6 million US?

          Would you walk away from 1 million?

          He’s not retiring.

          • crofton

            At least not until he gets to 500 wins as mentioned by John and John. Then there is what he said when asked post game if this was his last game in Vancouver….” I don’t know where that is coming from, I have never said that.”