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Are you confident Elias Pettersson can step up in round two vs. the Oilers?: Canucks Conversation

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Photo credit:© Bob Frid-USA TODAY Sports
Clarke Corsan
1 month ago
On today’s episode of Canucks Conversation, David Quadrelli and Harman Dayal discussed the results of a fan poll question about Elias Pettersson heading into Vancouver’s 2nd round matchup against Edmonton. 
According to a little over 1000 fan votes, almost 80% of Canucks fans are expecting (or simply hoping) Pettersson will perform better after a disappointing first round. 
“Here’s what it comes down to: on one hand, he played a little better in games five and six, so you have to like that,” Quads started. “But if there were a switch that was going to be flipped, we haven’t seen it. Is there a switch? If we asked this question before round one against Nashville, it would’ve been the same results. It didn’t happen against Nashville, so now I’m looking at it and saying, ‘You think he’s going to be better based on what we’ve seen from the past, but we all thought that heading into Nashville, so what’s different about this?'”
“The starting point is lower than where it was at the end of the regular season,” Harm noted. “Three points in six games. I know the last two were decent, but think about how nightmarish game two was. It wasn’t just that he was ineffective; he was so far away from his peak. Elevating doesn’t necessarily mean all of a sudden he has to take over games and match what McDavid and Draisaitl are doing. It could be as simple as playing at a point-per-game level, and I think that’s the middle ground a lot of fans are hoping he gets to.”
The Canucks’ upcoming series against Edmonton appears to be a much more daunting task than their series against Nashville. Although the Canucks beat Edmonton in all four of their regular-season games, three of them came at the start of the season during the Oilers’ terrible start, and the last win came against a McDavid-less Oilers squad. Pettersson will, at the very least, need to find a way to contribute for the Canucks to have a chance to move on.
“I wouldn’t have a lot of confidence that you can go from ineffective to dominating in one switch,” Harm added. “That would be the best-case scenario, but I don’t think he’ll hit that level. But can he elevate his game one or two notches and at least be a factor, winning his five-on-five matchups?”
“Against Nashville, he had plenty of situations where he made blind passes,” continued Harm. “When he’s on top of his game, he’s able to connect those, which is part of what makes him so dangerous as a playmaker. He has the spatial awareness to know where his linemates and opposition are. In round one, he was making those spinning backhand passes, and he was way off the target, a lot of them leading to turnovers. You can’t do that against Edmonton. With some of the top-end talent they have, you turn it over, and they’re going to burn you on the rush. Puck management is going to be huge. Tocchet was asked about Petey and specifically mentioned he has to be careful not to make blind passes. That’s an area for him to be extra cautious about in this Oilers series.”
You can watch the segment below:
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