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Instant Reaction: Boeser scores twice as Canucks snap losing streak with comeback win vs. Bruins

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Photo credit:© Anne-Marie Sorvin-USA TODAY Sports
David Quadrelli
1 month ago
Welcome back to Instant Reaction — the series here at CanucksArmy where we give you our instant reaction to the game and ask our readers to do the same in the comments section below! Wyatt Arndt is on The Stanchies tonight, and Mike Liu will have The Statsies — CA’s analytics-based post game report — posted tomorrow morning.
The Canucks’ lines were totally different to start this game. No, really. Every forward line got a shakeup.
JT Miller threw three hits on the first shift of the game. This was notable because Miller has been the Canucks’ best player during their recent skid, and he brought a “put the team on my back” mentality early.
Unfortunately, JT Miller’s back is only so big.
The Canucks were far too careless with the puck to kick off this game, especially when they were on the power play. Almost immediately after his team went on the man advantage, Thatcher Demko was tested on multiple odd-man rushes that resulted in great looks for Boston. If not for Demko being dialled in early, this game could have been out of hand in a hurry.
A late slashing penalty to Tyler Myers — call it undisciplined, call it a soft call, I think both descriptions are appropriate — put the Canucks shorthanded to close out the first period and for the first 1:22 of the second period.
This was already the Bruins’ third power play of the game.
The Canucks killed the penalty off and actually generated some solid chances to open the second period. The nicest chance to start the second period came thanks to Elias Pettersson — who made the decision not to pass to Ilya Mikheyev for obvious reasons.
Vancouver’s effort to start the second period was much better than the one they turned in to start this game. Of course, with a team like Boston, all it takes is one mistake for the puck to end up in the back of your net.
This is what we in the business call foreshadowing.
That mistake came from Filip Hronek just over five minutes into the middle frame. Hronek steps up in the neutral zone, doesn’t get the puck, and then gets beat going back the other way, resulting in a clear-cut breakaway that Jesper Boqvist made no mistake in burying to make it 1-0 Boston.
Later in the period, Danton Heinen had a puck deflect off of him to put the Bruins up 2-0.
I hope the Canucks coaching staff plays this goal on repeat when the team does video work next. Not to point out defensive coverage errors or anything; instead just to show what can happen if you actually fight for body positioning, get yourself on the inside of defenders, and crash the net hard.
Specifically, show this goal to the first power play unit.
After 40 minutes of play, the Canucks trailed 2-0. Oh, and JT Miller had eight hits at this point.
The Canucks came out in the third period with an absolute onslaught of offence that will be best broken down in The Stanchies later tonight. We’re going to show you the one that really stands out: JT Miller being absolutely robbed by Jeremy Swayman to pause the Canucks’ sustained pressure.
Notice we said pause, and not a term that suggested the pressure ended.
Because it didn’t.
The Canucks spent most of the third period putting on a clinic in offensive zone pressure and possession. They were first on every puck and were absolute fiends on puck retrievals in the Bruins’ zone.
Notably, it was JT Miller leading the way, and his back seemed to get even bigger, because he was absolutely dragging his teammates into the fight in the third period. The Canucks continued to pressure the Bruins, and with their net empty, the Canucks tied this one up courtesy of Filip Hronek:
That’s a hell of a time for Hronek to get his way back onto the scoresheet. This game needed overtime.
In OT, the Canucks were granted their second power play of the game after the Bruins were called for too many men. This was also the second chance of the game Green Men — who made their first appearance at Rogers Arena in eight years — to antagonize a Bruins player in the box. Minutes into the PP, the Canucks’ lethargic-of-late power play got their look and made no mistake, as JT Miller set up Brock Boeser for the OT winner. 3-2 Canucks final.
My instant reaction on the night? This was an electric comeback and a monster game for JT Miller, who assisted on all three Canucks goals. Most importantly, however, was the fact that the Canucks faced adversity within their adversity that they were already facing, and came out with a win. Did that make sense?
When things are going well in the NHL, it feels like nothing can stop you. That’s how the Canucks have felt for almost the entirety of this season.
But when things aren’t going well, it feels like they’re never going to go well ever again.
That’s how the Canucks have felt more recently.
But once things go well again? When you beat that adversity? That’s when you feel like things are back on track.
And sure, it’s just one win, and while I know a select few commenters are getting ready to tell me the Canucks are 1-4 in their last five games, it’s hard not to feel like tonight’s game — with two days off before they play again — is a bit of a turning point for this Canucks team. Tonight, things went the other way for the Canucks
What’s your instant reaction tonight? Let us know in the comments section below!

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