Canucks’ potential playoff matchup, depth scoring concerns, and more ft. Jeff Paterson: Canucks Conversation

Photo credit:© Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports
Clarke Corsan
10 days ago
On today’s episode of Canucks Conversation, David Quadrelli and Harman Dayal were joined by Rinkwide’s Jeff Paterson to discuss the Canucks’ playoff positioning, depth scoring and the new-look third line.
JPat offered his perspective on a potential playoff matchup: “If they somehow lose in a shootout or overtime tonight, we know they’d then be in that matchup against the Nashville Predators. I see a lot of people suggesting that’s the best matchup for the Canucks, and I get it, but I can’t look past the fact Nashville just won eighteen games without dropping one in regulation. That’s pretty impressive stuff. Their top end is playing about as well as any top end in the NHL. Ryan O-Reilly has found the fountain of youth and has been exactly what they hoped he’d be when they signed him. I still wonder a little bit about the depth and have some questions and concerns about Nashville, but Andrew Brunette has obviously done a really nice job of not losing focus and keeping their eyes on the prize. There are no easy games – as cliche as that is – but particularly this year in the West. A week ago, the Canucks looked like a team other teams probably would want a piece of and yet, an impressive comeback against Vegas and really impressive work in Edmonton the other night… things can change quickly.”
JPat highlighted the team’s lack of secondary scoring: “Since Christmas and the All-Star break, it’s been a struggle. You’ll find playoff games where top-end guys cancel each other out – it’s in the third period, a tie game, and you’re looking for a hero. Looking up and down the Canucks lineup, who’s that guy? Do you believe Sam Lafferty is going to come through in a tie game in the playoffs? It was great the other night – a night when the Canucks’ best players weren’t really going for whatever reason – you saw the ability of guys lower in the lineup to make a difference and ultimately swing the game in the Canucks’ favor. I want to see more of that come playoff time. I’m not expecting a massive breakout at this stage, but it feels like watching those guys, they’re so focused on defence and have switched the offensive switch off. If you’re Pius Suter and you find yourself with Miller and Boeser, there should be a little expectation of the odd contribution here or there.”
Finally, JPat analyzed Lindholm’s impact: “He’s only been back for a couple of games so he’s still finding his top form and trying to find a little chemistry with two guys who obviously ooze that chemistry in Joshua and Garland. We saw what that third line did with Teddy Blueger, and across the board, Elias Lindholm is a better player – better offensive skills if we can see a glimpse of those, and better defensive chops. He’s going to have to find a way to produce. A right-shot faceoff guy with a percentage that’s off the charts good, great on the penalty kill – he’s a valuable tool to have. Tocchet talked about the IQ of some of the plays, and these are things the average fan probably isn’t glamoring onto. When to dive in, when not to, when to back off – having that hockey sense that allows him to make the right decision in real-time and high leverage moments – I think that’s an under-appreciated part of his game.”
You can watch the full replay of today’s show below:

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