Jeff Paterson talks Silovs’ start, team awards, Elias Pettersson, and more: Canucks Conversation

Photo credit:© Bob Frid-USA TODAY Sports
Clarke Corsan
1 month ago
On today’s episode of Canucks Conversation, David Quadrelli and Harman Dayal were joined by Rinkwide’s Jeff Paterson to discuss Arturs Silovs’ first start of the season against the Ducks on Sunday, the Canucks’ performance heading into the playoffs and the end-of-season team awards.
“Any time a guy is thrown into a situation like that – first NHL action in over a year – as dumb as it sounds, stop the first one,” JPat said of Silovs’ mindset going into the game. “If the first one somehow gets past you, then there’s nervous energy in the building; teammates probably start wondering if this guy’s going to stop a shot. These are the Ducks – they haven’t scored more than 3 goals in a game but once in their last 15 outings – they don’t score. For (Silovs), this was a good fit. It was the right time. DeSmith had a nice run but an early start, no morning skate – that kind of stuff takes a starting goaltender perhaps out of his rhythm. The Canucks were not good for the first five minutes. Given the Ducks had played the day before and gotten smoked by the Oilers, I thought the Canucks might jump all over them. They didn’t, and Silovs had to make a couple of stops. He was forced to make a couple of saves to keep them in the game. All around, Silovs held up his end of the bargain. I thought the team in front of him should have played a little better, but it’s a win, so you take the two points.”
The guys moved on to discuss the Canucks’ performance now that they’ve locked down a playoff spot.
“Have they played their best hockey? Certainly not offensively – the power play has been an issue. But they’ve gone twelve games where they have not allowed more than three in regulation,” said JPat. “You gotta go back to that five-one thumping by the L.A. Kings at home on February 29th to find the last time they did, so they’ve been dialed in defensively. My concern is you look at who they beat – outright losses to the Kings, Stars, and the O.T. loss to the Avalanche. No blowouts or absolute duds, but there have been stretches in a lot of these games where you would have liked to see more. They’re not scoring a lot of goals, but they’re not giving up much either. That’s an encouraging sign. If they can continue to lock things down and get Thatcher Demko back, you’re going to be in almost every game. Then it’s a question of if it’s tied in the third period, can they muster the offence needed? You don’t have to win five to one in playoffs – you just gotta get one more than your opponent. There’s a lot to like about the way they’re playing. Getting Dakota Joshua back is huge; Garland is playing some of his best hockey, maybe ever.”
The conversation shifted to team awards, and for JPat, there’s one clear standout deserving of numerous accolades.
“For me, it’s Quinn Hughes across the board,” he said. “I wouldn’t bat an eye if he swept the awards. Most exciting player? You can make an argument he’s been that guy. Best defenseman, of course. Most valuable, he’s got my vote there. There are a lot of nights that I leave the rink and think we don’t talk enough about Quinn Hughes. And at the price point for three more years, a 90-point defenseman? I’m going to make a case for Hughes as being unsung in that regard. He won’t win the Unsung Hero award, but it’s such a weird one in a market like this where every player’s story is written a thousand times throughout the year. I see the strong wave of support for Connor Garland, and yet it feels like he’s been the most talked-about guy. Without a doubt in my mind, Hughes has been the MVP and has leveled up. He tilts the ice so much for the Canucks. As great as J.T. Miller and Demko have been this year, I think consistently, from start to finish, there’s not much doubt that Hughes has been MVP.”
You can watch the full replay of today’s show below:

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