Vancouver Canucks’ 3 stars of the week: Quinn Hughes shines, Garland holds steady, and Silovs stands tall

Photo credit:© Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports
Dave Hall
21 days ago
The good news is that the province of British Columbia is on its way to its first taste of playoff hockey in nearly a decade.
However, the bad news is that the team leading this run is providing less-than-stellar results leading up to it.
This week, the team dropped two out of three games while managing to defeat the league’s 28th-ranked franchise, the Arizona Coyotes.
Playing without the league’s top netminder, Thatcher Demko makes getting wins all the more challenging. Yet, overall, the team doesn’t seem to carry the same energy it once did midway through the year.
While some players consistently give their all night in and night out, there have been a few passengers who will need to find a way to step up with the playoffs just weeks away.
Let’s check in on a few of those names, highlighted by this team’s shining star and captain, Quinn Hughes.

Third star: Arturs Silovs

Despite the team’s struggles this week, Arturs Silovs stood out with his single solid performance, even if it was against the Arizona Coyotes.
While some may discount his performance due to the opponent, Silovs made several big saves to keep his team above water in a tighter-than-expected match.
He’s allowed just three goals over his two starts and has looked comfortable not only with the saves he’s making but in his rebound control.
It’s an encouraging development, as it’s been an up-and-down year for him down on the farm, where his game has looked shaky at times. For him to get the call, and look comfortable in an NHL environment, is huge for the organization going forward and for his development.
Rick Tocchet was impressed.
“Look’s like a veteran in there,” mentions Tocchet in his postgame media scrum.
Heck, many thought his strong game warranted another look in Los Angeles on Saturday.
With Demko presumably on his way back to the lineup, the ‘Arty Party’ may be wrapping up in short order. Silovs’ two-game stretch offered him valuable experience and provided an optimistic outlook for his future development.
Perhaps, as soon as next season?

Second star: Conor Garland

While finding worthy star candidates wasn’t the easiest task this week, you can always rely on Conor Garland. Just ask Wyatt Arndt…
He has yet to miss a game this season, and quite frankly, has shown up for most as well. Which, you can’t necessarily say about many of this team’s forward group.
This week, he tallied a goal and an assist and led the forward group in Corsi (68.60%) with his team outchancing their opponents 83-38 with the forechecking beat on the ice.
He’s been an engine that rarely turns off this year, and continues to be one of the season’s more underrated and underappreciated skaters in the NHL.
Or is he?

First star: Quinn Hughes

While it may have been a forgettable three-game slate for the team as a whole, their captain came to play and takes this week’s first star. Quite unanimously, I might add.
Quinn Hughes has taken his game to new levels this year and at this point, it often feels as if he’s toying with his opponents as he swiftly navigates around the ice.
Hughes led the team in several statistical categories this week, including goals (3), points (4), Corsi (69.74% )with his team purchasing opponents by a WHOPPING 106-46 chance differential with him on the ice.
With 86 points on the season, he’s on the verge of hitting 90, which would make him just the third active defender to hit that milestone.
Right behind him is the Colorado superstar, Cale Makar, which has sparked the million-dollar debate: Cale or Quinn?
Stats as of Friday, April 5th.
The fellas at Canucks Conversation broke the numbers down this week, putting their stakes in the ground for team Hughes.
According to David Quadrelli and Harman Dayal, Hughes has been the driving force behind the Canucks’ success this season. While Makar may have more goals, Hughes’ all-around impact and ability to drive play make him a strong contender for the Norris Trophy.
“Makar has more goals, you give him that, but Hughes has been the better play driver with his all-around impact,” said Harm. “Put it this way: Makar hasn’t been the best player on his own team. MacKinnon has by far been the engine of that Avs team, but Hughes is to the Canucks what MacKinnon is to the Avs this year.”
Hughes boasts 16 goals and 86 points through 77 games, with a plus-minus of plus-38. Makar has 19 goals and 83 points through 72 games with a plus-minus of plus-13
Feel free to share your thoughts in the comments section below.
The Canucks return home for a short two-game home stand for a rematch with Vegas and Arizona before heading to Edmonton for a quick one-stop match in Edmonton this week.
See you next week!
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