Photo credit:© Bob Frid-USA TODAY Sports
What’s wrong with Elias Pettersson?: Canucks Conversation
3 months ago
On today’s episode of Canucks Conversation, David Quadrelli and Harman Dayal discuss the recent struggles of Elias Pettersson.
The guys started off with a recap of last night’s 5-2 loss to the Colorado Avalanche. All the conversation around the game focused on star defencemen Cale Makar and Quinn Hughes, as the two franchise blueliners are making early cases for the Norris Trophy.
“The Canucks were right in that game. Obviously Cale Makar scores the back breaking goal to put the Avalanche up 4-2, but a really strong game for J.T. Miller,” said Quads.
Harm noted Colorado’s ability to shut down Vancouver’s offence:
“They prevented the them from generating a lot of grade A chances, they owned the slot and that inner crease area. The Canucks would have puck control, but a lot of it would be on the perimeter.”
The guys were then joined by Dave Hall, prospect contributor for CanucksArmy, to talk about the Abbotsford Canucks and some of the Canucks’ best performing prospects.
Later, the guys dove into the big question: What’s wrong with Elias Pettersson?
“4 points in his last 7, -8 plus-minus, just one goal in his last 7 as well,” said Quads. “Last night on the ice for three goals against, two of which were at even-strength… We had this conversation at the beginning of the season; we were seeing Pettersson clearly not at his best, but he was still putting up points… Now the points aren’t coming. Are you worried at all, Harm?”
“Worried might be too strong a word, but I’m starting to get a tad concerned,” Harm answered. “Watching him play right now, the biggest difference is he just doesn’t look dangerous when he’s taking defenders on in one-on-one situations. It feels like he lacks the explosiveness with his skating, we know he’s not Connor Mcdavid but a lot of the time he was still able to pull away and create plays that way.
“I see a combination of A, he doesn’t have the dynamic skating to separate and create space and B, he might have been able to overcome that with his stick handling but right now he’s mishandling it and turning it over in spots he wouldn’t normally.
“There’s going to be discussion around this idea that he’s working through some sort of ailment. Do you rest him at some point? I just don’t think stars like to take that break at all.”
“I was looking at the schedule to see if there’s a stretch of games it would make sense to rest him, and I think it’s next week,” Quads replied. “I think it’s the Canucks’ only chance to get in front of this if that’s the route they want to go. I understand Elias Pettersson wants to play in every game, but what we learned last night is that when he’s not at his best, the Canucks are not able to beat teams like the Colorado Avalanche.”
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