Are you concerned about the Canucks going winless against playoff teams over the past month?: Canucks Conversation

Photo credit:© Matt Krohn-USA TODAY Sports
Clarke Corsan
19 days ago
On today’s episode of Canucks Conversation, David Quadrelli and Harman Dayal welcomed Rink Wide’s Jeff Paterson to discuss the Canucks’ recent struggles against playoff-calibre teams and the ongoing question of the penalty kill.
“When you think of areas that the Canucks spent big money last offseason to address, it was fixing the worst penalty kill in the NHL,” started JPat. “They brought in Ian Cole, Carson Soucy, Teddy Blueger, Pius Suter, implemented new coaching systems – and yet the penalty kill is still 18th in the NHL over the season. The issues have been especially noticeable since the All-Star break. What is the common denominator here? Casey DeSmith has been in goal. I think it’s fair to say that Thatcher Demko would have given you a couple more saves along the way. I can’t say the Canucks would have won all those games, but Demko would have found a way to get you a few more saves while you’re shorthanded.”
“If they insert Noah Juulsen tonight, that’s an indication that the guys they’ve gone with the last few games haven’t been getting it done,” JPat continued. “It’s kinda crazy that this late in the season, you have to turn to your 7th-best defenseman and need him specifically for one area of the game. Another thing is when Teddy Blueger takes penalties with Lindholm out of the lineup, J.T. Miller is one of your primary penalty killers. We know J.T. does so many good things for the Canucks, but he’s not one of their best penalty killers. Among Canuck forwards, Teddy Blueger has taken more penalties than anybody since the All-Star break.”
“Is there a psychological risk in that lack of success against L.A. and Vegas, considering there’s a high probability you run into one in the playoffs?” asked Harm.
“It’s a want, not a need necessarily,” JPat answered. “Who would benefit most from a Canuck victory over the defending Stanley Cup champs? It’s probably the marketplace. Results against playoff teams don’t carry over; if you lose to Vegas tonight and end up drawing L.A., tonight’s game doesn’t matter. The Kings know what they’ve done against you. What does matter is holding off Edmonton. That’s where more of the psychological damage comes in. The Canucks were atop the division all season – they had a 19-point lead over the Oilers before Christmas. If Edmonton comes all the way back, beats them on Saturday, and clips them at the finish line, that would cause some scar tissue. Ultimately, when you get to the playoffs, you want to be at your best. The Canucks will hit the reset button once they learn their opponent, and it’s going to be on the coaching staff to come up with a game plan that will allow the Canucks to have some sort of postseason success. It would be nice to see them rise to the challenge against one of these Western Conference playoff teams, though.”
You can watch the full replay of today’s show below:

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