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The Statsies: Vancouver Canucks find all the answers to the Canes’ challenge

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Photo credit:© Bob Frid-USA TODAY Sports
Michael Liu
6 months ago
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The Vancouver Canucks hung onto a 4-3 result against the Carolina Hurricanes, finding the eye of the storm and weathering a team that was looking to avoid four consecutive losses. Despite the onslaught, the Canucks did well, playing with pace and structure and looking much more like the team that started off the season. They played with a hunger that was missing for the last month or so and delivered when the pressure was turned on to get two points at home.
Here’s the win, by the numbers.
As always, you can find our glossary guide of advanced stats here.

Game Flow

The Canucks got a good jump in their step right from the get-go of this game. They generated lots of momentum and pressure, finding themselves establishing a healthy lead at 5v5 in both CF% and xGF%. By the end of the first, even with the Carolina 5-on-3, Vancouver was holding 56.76 CF% and 62.88 xGF% share. The second period was a different story Corsi-wise, as Carolina got themselves a 68.97 CF% advantage in the frame. However, the Canucks kept the xGF% battle nearly even, which says a lot about limiting the opportunities that the Hurricanes had even with the disparity in puck possession. When the score effects kicked in and Carolina turned up the heat, Vancouver locked it down to prevent the tying goal from happening.

Heat Map

Vancouver is continuing the trend of converting on their chances, with three of the four goals tonight coming from their high-danger hot spot in tight. The high-danger chances were 13-12 in favour of the Canucks, while the overall scoring chance battle stood at 30-22 for the Canes. That much is shown through the wider spread of attempts that the visitors had, with their hot spot in the slot area just a little less concentrated than that of the Canucks’. Overall, it wasn’t bad, and keeping the Canes to 12 HDCF on 30 total scoring chances should be a testament to the Canucks defence tonight.

Individual Advanced Stats

Corsi Champ: With how the Canucks generally got outpossessed through the entire game, it’s slim pickings when trying to find a true Corsi champ. Andrei Kuzmenko led Vancouver with a 60.00 CF%, but it was clear that he wasn’t his usual self confidence-wise. Nils Aman held a 60.00 CF% share at 5v5, but only saw 5 minutes of even-strength play. This might be a game where no Corsi champ gets awarded because it just didn’t reflect the quality of game that these players had.
Corsi Chump: JT Miller earns this one for a 22.73 CF% at 5v5 play. It doesn’t reflect a bad game, only showing how hard he and the rest of his line were matched up against. Miller was actually recording a 20.98 xGF% last night, conceding a team-worst 1.17 xGA when he was on ice. It shows the level of assignment that he was facing, but even then he was able to get on the scoresheet.

THE STATSIES PRESENTED BY BETWAY

xGF: Phil Di Giuseppe ended up racking up 84.93 xGF% on the night to lead the Canucks, a team-best 0.18 xGA playing to his favour as well as producing 1.03 xGF. The point production magic might’ve worn off and he is down on the fourth line, but it showed a decent amount of chance generation while PDG was on ice. The winger was present for a 5-1 HDCF differential, showing that the fourth line wasn’t just entirely a passenger last night. As for raw xGF, Quinn Hughes led the way with a 1.62, though it was a quiet night for the Canucks’ best defenceman.
GSAx: Thatcher Demko did his fair share last night against the Hurricanes. As Carolina sent their onslaught to the tune of 3.26 xGF, Demko finished the night with a 0.26 GSAx to help the Canucks win this game by one. Two of the three goals he gave up came from high-danger chances, with the other goal resulting from a middle-danger chance. Demko was brilliant especially with the time that this group spent on the penalty kill, helping keep the Canucks in front until the final horn.

Statistical Musings

Top 6 looking more like themselves: It was a night that featured production from the Canucks top 6, despite less-than-impressive statistics. The Hoglander-Miller-Boeser line and Lafferty-Pettersson-Mikheyev line posted some unimpressive statistics at 5v5, mostly matched up against the Canes best defenders and top 6 units, but still produced. In total, the 6 of them combined for 10 points on the night, which is the type of effort that you need from your high-end talent to win games. Sure they got out-possessed the majority of the time they were on ice, but they took the chances that they got to help win this game.
A team effort defensively: What stands out when looking at the time on ice is not just the Hughes-Hronek pairing leading the Canucks, but Nikita Zadorov and Tyler Myers following them up. They were leaned on the most out of all the pairings, with Ian Cole and Noah Juulsen a bit behind them in TOI. But for Zadorov-Myers, there weren’t any major mistakes, playing under control and within the system, and it looks as if the rest of the team helped buy into the defensive structure to help the defence out. It’s something that will be interesting to keep an eye out as the rest of the season unfolds.

As a team

CF% – 36.73% HDCF% – 52.00% xGF% – 44.51%
The Canucks started the game off strong, jumping out to an early lead and managed to respond whenever they were pushed by the Hurricanes. Sure, it didn’t look entirely comfortable at times, but the details and effort were there from beginning to end, and that much was appreciated especially after the past month. These are the kinds of games that this team should be having, a complete effort from beginning to end even if it isn’t dominant. That effort will get them that much closer to where they want to be.
Vancouver has a bit of a break before facing off against the Tampa Bay Lightning at home on Tuesday.
Stats provided by naturalstattrick.com

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