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Instant Reaction: Elias Lindholm scores two in Canucks debut en route to 3-2 win over Carolina

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Photo credit:© James Guillory-USA TODAY Sports
David Quadrelli
14 days ago
Welcome back to Instant Reaciton — 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! Cody Severtson is on Stanchies duty and Mike Liu will have The Statsies — CA’s analytics-based post game report — up tomorrow morning!
I sure missed hockey. I sure missed Canucks hockey.
What a return to play tonight was for the Canucks, as they took down the Carolina Hurricanes by a final score of 3-2. Let’s get into this one!
On their first shift together, Elias Pettersson nearly set up Elias Lindholm for what would have been his first goal as a Canuck. EP40 slid the puck out in front from behind the Canes’ goal but Lindholm couldn’t make contact with the puck as he was tied up by a Carolina defenceman.
In the immediate aftermath, however, Ilya MIkheyev drew a tripping penalty and put the Canucks on the power play early. The power play that followed was a mess, as the Canucks failed to get set up and struggled to contend with Carolina’s aggressive style of penalty killing. As the second unit made their way out, some lackadaisical puck watching from Sam Lafferty (and maybe Filip Hronek to some extent too) resulted in Carolina scoring a shorthanded goal to make it 1-0 early.
If there’s one thing a second-unit power play should ensure, it’s that they don’t get scored on.
So, yeah, that wasn’t great. The Canucks got back to work at five on five, with the third line generating the team’s best chances — but what else is new?
It was through hard work from the third line that the Canucks got their second power play chance of the game, and this time, they converted, with Elias Lindholm scoring his first as a Canuck.
My Instant Reaction from the first period is that the Canucks’ third line looks like they didn’t go on any sort of vacation over the All-Star break. The other thing is that Ilya Mikheyev was moving his feet plenty, which meant it was perhaps the best period he’s played all season.
In the second, the Canucks continued to pour on the pressure that they had been creating for much of the first. The Canucks hounded the Hurricanes on the forecheck, and controlled play for most of the game to this point. Despite that, the Hurrcines still found themselves with a few high-danger chances throughout thanks to some offence off the rush.
The Canes got their first power play opportunity of the game after Ian Cole took a hooking penalty just past the halfway point of the second. This marked our first chance to see Elias Lindholm kill a penalty as a Canuck, and he passed with flying colours, as the Canucks killed off the penalty.
Elias Pettersson drew a penalty to put the Canucks back on the power play, and it was there that Elias Lindholm passed another test for the second time tonight: the goalscoring test.
Lindholm’s two goals came in the same area and were both assisted by Quinn Hughes. Most of us knew Lindholm would score goals once he came to the Canucks, despite his goal scoring not being up to his standards this season in Calgary. Still, it was nice to see him score immediately after putting on a Canucks uniform.
Back on the power play, the Canes tied things up before the second period came to a close.
Four minutes into the third, JT Miller gave the Canucks another lead after Canes goaltender Pyotr Kochetkov turned the puck over to Brock Boeser leading to Miller banging home the loose puck.
Now protecting a lead, the Canucks got some key saves from Thatcher Demko all throughout the third period. While the shot total for Carolina wasn’t very high, the quality of the chances they were generating certainly was.
With just over two minutes remaining in the game, Carolina pulled their goalie and the Canes continued to pour on the pressure. Demko made some absolutely stellar saves tonight en route to his ninth straight win, tying the Canucks franchise record.
My instant reaction as a whole is that was a gritty road win for the Canucks this evening, and the break seems to have served this team well.
What’s your instant reaction to tonight’s game? Let us know in the comments section below!

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