Color me pissed off. That's right, I am ANGRY about last night's game. We were lead to believe this would be an epic battle of two elite teams in the Western Conference. What we got was something that should have been accompanied by 'Sweet Georgia Brown'. Okay, so I am not pissed. That may have been one of the best performances by the Canucks this season. Every single aspect of the game was dominated by the Canucks, and apart from a cringe-worthy gaffe by Henrik Sedin, if you had anything to complain about with last night's game, you complain too much. Any game where only 4 players don't make the scoresheet is a success no matter how you look at it. More after the jump...
A lot of real encouraging signs last night that this team once again is taking responsibility after some lackluster efforts, as evidenced by the play of the Captain and Ryan Kesler. Did I really see that stat that the Canucks are 17-0-1 when he scores? That's impressive. I really liked the hustle of the 4th line last night, and was happy to see Aaron Volpatti get rewarded with the beauty set up on Hank's goal. I also liked how he brushed off the Stars' Krystofer Barch when the score was around 4-1. Why take your foot off their throat at that point? A whole lotta slump busting goin' on last night, and Mikael Samuelsson had one of his better games this season, looking dangerous and more like the FU Sweden we had last season. Christopher Tanev continues to show that he may be a keeper, with some rock steady play on the backline with Keith Ballard last night, and Alexander Edler was solid once again, really starting to come into his own, that kid. And thank you, Thomas Gradin for that.
For those of you who never got to see Gradin play, he was pretty damn good. He was often overshadowed by a certain team in Edmonton (they had a couple good players on that team, eh?) so you didn't notice him in the division when they Oilers were continuously making everyone their bitches. A great skater with sweet hands, in a way very Sedin-like in the way he approached the game. Shame he didn't have a twin. It was cool to see footage of him in the blue and green original jerseys, as most recollections of him are in the V jersey. A nice tribute to one of the true beauties this club has had in it's 40 year history.
Another tough challenge tomorrow night as the Canucks welcome Shane O'Brien and the Nashville Predators to Rogers Arena in their last game before the All Star break. You know the Roxy have had this date circled on the calendar since the schedule was released, no doubt excited that the prodigal son is returning to claim his throne of sorts.
Fried Potatoes and Scrambled Eggs
The Flames have won 3 in a row, and have seemingly put any thoughts of a rebuild on hold as they now feel they can reach the playoffs. The moved out of 14th into 12th place last night, 4 points back of the 8th place Colorado Avalanche, and in a surprising move placed long time forward Craig Conroy on waivers. Not sure if they're just trying to move him down to Abbotsford or what, but this seems like the curtains are slowly closing for their one time Captain... Add Evgeni Malkin to the list of players who will not be at the All Star Game this weekend, joining Sidney Crosby, Jarome Iginla, Ales Hemsky and Tobias Enstrom of Atlanta... Lots of rumours floating around about who might get the GM's job in Ottawa next season, including TSN's Pierre MacGuire. If there is a god, he/she/it will pluck him from the airwaves and give him the task of rebuilding this sad sack squad that is starting to make the Leafs look good...
WAACH 'Cast's Band Of The Day- MIDNIGHT
A thrash/black metal band that's written a song about the Pittsburgh Steelers? Why the hell not? With the Super Bowl rapidly approaching, this Cleveland, OH based band re-worked an original song of theirs to pay tribute to their favorite team the
Browns Steelers... Not a bad little ditty, very gritty and dirty. Me likey.