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Scenes from Canucks practice: Rick Tocchet talks rest and recovery after two tired losses

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Photo credit:Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports
David Quadrelli
3 months ago
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The Vancouver Canucks have been playing a lot of hockey as of late, and as a result, they’ve been playing like a tired team. But as you may have read last night, both Ian Cole and Rick Tocchet don’t really care that the players are tired.
“We need to take a step back, look at it, figure out what was not good enough, and fix it right away,” said Cole post game. “You know, fatigue should never be a factor. Yes, there’s a lot of hockey games. Yes, time zones, travel, all that, but it’s the NHL. There’s no excuses, like, ‘Oh, I was tired.’ You’ve gotta figure it out.”
“When you’re tired, you just got to play, you just got to be really smart,” said the Canucks’ bench boss. “You know, you’re out there for 30 seconds, you get the red, get it in deep. You know, get one guy safely off, get another guy, you know, standard structure. And then on the fourth goal, we make a switch then we leave the guts open. You know, we’re usually a pretty good team getting to the guts of the ice and we’re leaving that guts of the ice open. And then that’s when goalies have to play post to post. I hate when goalies have to play post to post. So you got to protect the guts of the ice even when you’re tired.”
The Canucks are currently in a well-documented stretch of seven games within the span of 11 days. Saturday night’s loss marked game three, and with the San Jose Sharks rolling into town for game four, the Canucks are going to be hoping to get back on track with a good reset opportunity.
That being said, the Canucks can’t take the Sharks lightly by any means, as a loss to San Jose would mean some very valid and serious doubts about what this team is actually capable of would arise.
Today, the chance to rest officially began, as the Canucks were back on the ice at Rogers Arena for an optional practice.
A lot of players took the rest option, as it was a fairly quiet morning skate. Pius Suter did not skate and is still day to day. Tocchet spoke about the team’s process of resetting after a loss.
“You look at certain things that have been happening and you deal with it. We had a good meeting today, and then you worry about the next game,” said Tocchet. “We had a good meeting today and then you just worry about the next day. We reset after each game, like each game is our own entity, like a different game. Like, yeah, last five games, we’re kind of slipping on certain parts of our game, but then you just tackle last game and then you go for today, how you fix it for tomorrow with the grind.”
Tocchet also touched on recovery for his players:
“Usually we’ll have a presentation on sleep and some stats, hydration and nutrition, we try to get players information all the time. It’s important when you have a rest day that you have an active rest, it doesn’t mean you’re sitting on your couch all day eating potato chips, right? You’ve got to move your body, go for a walk, maybe pedal the bike, it actually helps your mind and your energy level too. So I don’t like to look at it saying ‘yeah we got four in six we’re going to be tired.’ Like you’ve got to look at it like, okay, we got San Jose tomorrow. How do we get back into our identity and our staples? Well, good shifts, chipping the body, like those things that’ll get you back on track if you look at the process other than the results.”
“I always ask the players ‘How’d you sleep?’ It was nice to hear guys say they got eight, nine hours. That’s optimal. You know, if you’re getting 8-9 hours, that really helps for tomorrow night against San Jose.”

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