Canucks @ Oilers Game Preview: Disciples Of The Watch

 CANUCKS
OILERS

AT

Time Sun. 5:00 PST
TV Sportsnet Pacific
Season Series  1-0 Canucks
Last Meeting
4-3 Canucks(Nov.02/10)
The Enemy The Copper and Blue Scoring Leaders

D. Sedin: 16-18-34

Ryan Whitney: 0-21-21
Canucks
Category Oilers
15-8-4 Season Record 11-12-5
3rd
Conference Position 14th
Lost 1
Streak Won 1
6-5-2
< Road Record / Home Record >
5-6-2
5-4-1
Last 10 7-2-1
+16 v
Goals For / Against +/- -23
3.26 (4) -
Goals Per Game 2.68 (16)
2.63 (10) v
Goals Against Per Game 3.39 (29)
1.04 (15) v
5 On 5 GF/GA 0.83 (23)
25.9 (1) -
Power Play %
16.4 (16)
85.4 (6) v
Penalty Kill %
70.8 (30)
30.5 (17) -
Shots Per Game 25.8 (29)
29.9 (15) ^
 Shots Against Per Game 34.8 (29)
80.0 (8) v
Winning % When Scoring First 63.6 (23)
90.9 (4) v
Winning % When Leading After 1 66.7 (21)
90.9 (15) v
Winning % When Leading After 2 62.5 (29)
57.2 (1) -
Faceoffs % 45.1 (28)
12.4 (12) -
PIM's Per Game 15.8 (26)
NHL.com

All it took was 1 night for Cory Schneider's stats to fall back down to earth to where Roberto Luongo's stats are...

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So we can close the door on that whole Roberto vs Red fiasco right? Schneider was not getting much help from his friends against the Lightning. It seems lately that the Canucks love their puck possession game but are struggling in their own end. When it looks like they are taking care of business (in general) in their own zone they suddenly allow golden scoring opportunities against. These golden opportunities are resulting in goals.

It is time to get back to basics. Sure, the all out attack is fun to watch but it doesn't translate into consistent success if you can't play a 2-way game. Where is the balance? Yeah, the team can be commended for repeated comebacks in the 3rd periods but how about not digging the hole to climb out of to begin with? I suppose the positives here are that the Canucks have gained 11 out of a possible 14 points in their last 7 games. So what the hell am I bitching about? Well, it's like I said before: I want the team to tighten up. I want them to establish some authority. You know, act like the Cup contender that they are "supposed" to be.

Random image:

Photobucket

It made me laugh. It didn't have to be that way.

A few trends that I found frustrating against the Lightning:

-the Canucks looked to be in slug mode for most of the early stages of the game. The Lightning skated with a vengeance and checked like hell. Vancouver seemed fine to carry the puck into the Lightning zone, get smothered, and turn the puck over. Only in the 3rd period did they decide to dump the fucking puck in and establish a forecheck, which, of course, required them to step up the pace of their game a notch.

Edmonton is not going to be a cake walk. There is plenty of skill and speed there as well. Shitloads of work ethic from Tom Renney's team. That work ethic has them 7-2-1 in their last 10. They have achieved at least a point in 6 straight games. They have won 5 of their last 6. All this after a rant about not showing pride wearing an Oilers jersey to the media.

In their last 5 games:

-Magnus Pajaarvi has 1 goal and 5 assists (he is finally cashing in)

-Taylor Hall has 4 goals

-Gagner West has 2 goals and 2 assists

The kids are rolling. Can the Canucks stop them?

Nikolai Khabibulin has started 3 of the last 4 games and has looked very impressive. He continues to defy age and DUI charges. I've always been a fan.

Look at the Oilers' team stats at the top of the page. Is this not a team that we should destroy? Barring Khabibulin being goalie Jesus we should own these guys! Time to step up to the plate, Canucks. Beat these guys in convincing fashion. You know..like you beat the Blackhawks 4 games ago.

I now wonder what the Canucks' record is lately against teams that are playing the second game of a back to back situation. It can't be impressive.

You ever get the impression that the Canucks are just in cruise mode lately? Like they are not pushing full throttle because...well I don't know..they have 1st spot in the NW and are pacing themselves? That's the way it looks to me.

Oh, and thank you to Tampa's Dan Ellis for letting us back in the game on Saturday night.  We'll take the point in the OTL.

VIDEO

No, no video. Just beat these punks. And somebody kill Linus Omark for pissing off the Lightning. Ha!

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