Instant Reaction: Elias Pettersson tallies five points in Canucks’ 6-2 win over Flyers
Photo credit:© Bob Frid-USA TODAY Sports
9 months ago
Look, if the Canucks are going to pick up a win and put their tank efforts on pause, you want Elias Pettersson to tally five points. And tonight, when the Canucks beat the Philadelphia Flyers by a final score of 6-2, that’s exactly what happened.
Tonight, I’m going to give my instant reaction from each period instead, so that we can experience together the highs and lows of watching this team. My only regret is not doing it this way from the start of the year. For all your highlight needs, be sure to check back in an hour or two for The Stanchies, which are being written by Cody Severtson tonight.
First period thoughts
Is Christian Wolanin this team’s second-best defenceman? After impressing in training camp, Wolanin went down to the AHL and has put together a fantastic season with the Abbotsford Canucks. He was an AHL All-Star and has been trusted to play in all situations, and it’s almost surprising that it took this long for him to get a look with the big club.
Riley Stillman, Travis Dermott, Kyle Burroughs, and Oliver Ekman-Larsson have all been ahead of Wolanin on the organizational depth chart this season. Now, it’s just one game, but Wolanin’s positional awareness, poise with the puck, and ability to make a breakout pass has to make him a better option than at least three, maybe all four of the names on that list, doesn’t it?
Of course, the key will be if he can do it over an extended period of time. But with Dermott hitting IR today and OEL being out on a week-to-week basis, Wolanin will get a good opportunity to prove himself. Tonight was certainly a good first impression.
He didn’t get a point for it, but Wolanin was instrumental in setting up Anthony Beauvillier’s first goal of the game, as he made a smart neutral zone read to take the puck away and jumpstart the Canucks’ offence the other way. Add that to the list of things you don’t see from a Canucks defenceman every day.
Second period thoughts
Powered by a curated combination of Coca-Cola and a banana, Andrei Kuzmenko gave the Canucks a 2-1 lead early into the second period after tapping in a nifty pass from Luke Schenn, who finished with two assists on the night.
Anthony Beauvillier, who opened the scoring for the Canucks in the first, added his second goal of the game after tipping a Quinn Hughes point shot home for his fourth goal since being acquired by the Canucks. Don’t look now, but that’s one more goal than Bo Horvat’s scored since the trade.
Beauvillier’s brought a complete game and has meshed very well with Elias Pettersson and on the Canucks’ first power play unit in Horvat’s bumper spot.
Arturs Silovs came up big in the second and third periods to help the Canucks lock down the win, and picked up his first NHL win. It was a tough night for team tank, but an even tougher night for the “how could the Canucks do this to Silovs?” crowd that was far too loud the other night.
Silovs did what he’s done anytime I’ve watched him since his draft year: shown promise.
In his draft year, he was ridiculously agile, quick on his feet, and sealed off the bottom of the net extremely well. He had his flaws, but he showed promise. And ever since, he’s built off of that raw ability that Ian Clark was so high on in Silovs’ draft year.
His rebound control certainly needs work, and his post-integration is still sloppy at times, but again, he’s 21, is still showing plenty of promise, and he’s developing extremely well — certainly ahead of schedule for a 6th-round pick.
Third period thoughts
Phil Di Giuseppe, who Tocchet called one of his best players recently, and tonight, PDG was rewarded for his efforts with a classic North-South hard-working goal that certainly pleased his coach.
Not to sound like too much of a whiner/homer — whatever you want to call it — that cheapshot by Travis Konecny on Elias Pettersson was infuriating to watch.
Put your fandom aside for a second. This league has talked for years about protecting its stars, and this is an example of a star not being protected. This is so long after the play in a game that’s almost over and Konecny knows he won’t have to answer for his actions for the rest of the night, and for the rest of the season because
The broadcast said that JT Miller apparently followed Konecny around the ice a bit after the fact, but of course, the officials give Konecny a nice escort to the bench and don’t throw him out of the game.
Anyways, Pettersson — who already leads the franchise in five point nights — tallied another one tonight and appeared to just be winded/ shaken up by the shot from Konecny.
What was your instant reaction to tonight’s game? Let us know in the comments section below!
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