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Instant Reaction: Andrei Kuzmenko logs the lowest ice time of any Canuck in loss to Detroit

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Photo credit:© Tim Fuller-USA TODAY Sports
David Quadrelli
9 months ago
Welcome back to Instant Reaction — the series here at CanucksArmy in which we give you our instant reaction to the game and ask our readers to do the same! 
What can you even say on a day like today? It was a 9 AM start, and the Canucks played like it. Be honest, were you fully ready to even watch this game this morning?
Sure, it was noon local time, but that’s still an early start nonetheless. It’s not to make excuses for the team by any means, rather, it’s to warn you, the reader, that today’s game was as about as lively as you would think a 9 AM start would be.
There were two Canucks goals, and five Red Wings goals. In other words, the Canucks lost this one by a final score of 5-2, going 1-2-1 on the road trip. They now head home to take on these same Red Wings on Monday night. Let’s hope that game is more fun than this one was.
Let’s keep this simple. Elias Pettersson scored his 25th of the year. That was good. The Canucks lost in regulation, and that’s of course good for their tank efforts. Andrei Kuzmenko played fewer minutes than any Canucks skater. That’s not good. Let’s talk about that last point a little bit more.
Whatever the opposite of a new coach bump is, that’s what’s happening with Andrei Kuzmenko right now since Rick Tocchet has come to the Canucks. Kuzmenko’s ice time has been incredibly limited in the games since, and today was no different. It seems a bit strange, but Tocchet clearly wants players to play a certain way in order to get top line minutes.
This would of course not be as much of a talking point if the Canucks hadn’t just extended Kuzmenko for another two years at $5.5 million, adding to their glut of wingers. On top of that, Anthony Beauvillier certainly looks right at home in the bumper spot on PP1 and on Elias Pettersson’s wing (who doesn’t?) and that bodes well for the Canucks (aside from the fact that he’s another winger, of course).
The club has options here. They can either trade Beauvillier at the deadline after he builds up his value playing with EP40, or they can be pleased that the contract they had to take back to make the Bo Horvat trade work has three points in his last two games.
The game itself wasn’t all that entertaining or interesting. The Canucks’ goaltending without Thatcher Demko continues to be an issue, and of course, the penalty kill and defence aren’t great either. You’ve seen this movie before.
What was your instant reaction to tonight’s game? Let us know in the comments section below!

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