Here’s what we’ve learned so far on this road trip to the fowl bowels of California.
- Never take a day off in SoCal. No, really. Can turn pro hockey players into hipster surfer bums - sitting around bored and aimless waiting for the Apple store to open.
Tanev was hurt and couldn’t play - not from hockey, but from thumb and finger over extension trying the Dr. Strange magic spell 4 finger swipe up/left/right/fast on the iPhone X.
- Canucks without Tanev and with Edler aren’t quite as good as the other way round. Where Tanev could bail out Marky, Edler will just try to lay low. Welcome back Eddie.
Here’s more that we learned: (we got learned up real good tonight)
- Going into a game against an injury-riddled opponent is always an easy win. It’s not.
- A bad PP with a good PK can eek out a win.
- A bad PK with a good PP can eek out a win.
- A bad PP and a bad PK can assure a loss.
- Getting outplayed can often eek out a
- Gaunce’s goal output is having a big impact. Just kidding.
Not saying the Nucks were lucky in cowtown, although they were some lucky bounces, they were outplayed by the flames, but with some lucky bounces scored moar goals than their opponents. Tonight was a different sort of bounce. The bad kind.
The Canucks got on the board first thanks to Kev’s soft spot for his old team. He cleared the puck out of the danger area over to the Baer area. And Baer put one past Millsie.
And that was it for Miller’s sentimental Canuckle moment. Pretty much. And so begins Miller time in Disneyland. That’s so weird. I’m happy that Miller is happy soaking up the SoCal flip flop lifestyle. But, not as happy as I could be if he would’ve given us a few softies for new old times.
So the first carried on like it was counting down the minutes to the Duckies’ powerplay when Double D could perform his heroic shortie shin game. Or not. Instead we get to watch some other team’s powerplay make us pay. Didn’t we prepay already?
So it’s tied going into the 2nd. That’s not so bad. Not so good either...
This is the period where the serious pushback needs to happen. Unless you’re a visiting hipster surfer bum / pro hockey player. The Nucks got outplayed by the underbirds. And worse, the ugly ducklings got another powerplay goal. 2 PP markers in one game! That’s ok because the Nucks power play that once got 2 PP goals in one game, got their chance too. But, it was the wrong shade of chance, not suitable for hipster surfers. So they declined it.
The second ended with the Nucks getting outplayed and outshot, but only down 2-1. That’s not so bad.
Except that it got more bad. In a bad way.
Study the above image. Just not for long. The image reveals what might have been. If the Nucks had been able to keep Silfverburg’s head up Edler’s ass for another 15 minutes they might have had a chance in the 3rd to get the tie, the cheap suit and a pricey pair of cheap sunglasses.
Instead, Silfverburg, after nasal disinfectants I’m sure, succeeded with the Dr Strange moves and scored on another Ducking powerplay. Just 30 seconds into the 3rd. And then feeling strangely effective, he scored again on the Nucks 35 seconds later. Barely a minute into the 3rd, the Nucks expecting to get the tieing goal in the last minute of the game, had to come up with 3 goals for the tie. And so they didn’t.
The Canucks had 5 power plays in the game. Maybe if they had 10 the stats might have risen a bit above 0%. Meanwhile the Ducks PP was at 50% - scored 3 goals on 6 opportunities. Hmmm...3 power play goals...which is interestingly the same margin they won the game. Special teams can make a difference. Who knew?
And of special note, seems Miller was getting a little queasy watching his former sidekick’s SV% drop to .886 and had to leave the game. Sadly, the Ducks replaced him with another goalie. And I thought there were all out of them.
This was the kind of loss we expected last year and had many reasons to explain it. With the new, surprisingly faster, stronger never-say-never Canucks of this nascent season, there’s only a few
But, stating them in public gives me bad flashbacks. Remember last year when they were on that long losing streak? No, not that one, the other one. The team would put a Sedin in front of the press to take the heat. They did that tonight. Chilling.
"There has been 3 or 4 games where we shouldn't have won and it caught up to us today." - Henrik Sedin pic.twitter.com/InelEHl9GE— Vancouver Canucks (@Canucks) November 10, 2017
When Hank talks about games they shouldn’t have won this early in the season, I get as queasy as Miller.
But, good news for the Accountability Police, others on the team were self-arresting too.
“This should be a wake-up call for us. We’ve been outplayed a few games in a row here and we need to pick it up. We made them look really good tonight, we got what we deserved.” - Gudbranson— Vancouver Canucks (@Canucks) November 10, 2017
Even Bo who is like the poster boy for boyish one liners was downbeat
“We weren’t good, it’s pretty simple. Too many turnovers, not enough push. We were outplayed tonight.” - @BoHorvat— Vancouver Canucks (@Canucks) November 10, 2017
No official video from the Green room is available. It is reported the Green room was scorching red with blue air anyways.
Is this the wake up call the team was waiting for? Maybe. Best to put down the smartphones, kick off the flip flops and start playing smart hockey again. And get Tanev a S8 and back on the ice by Saturday, please. And maybe un-juggle the recent line juggling. I won’t say bad things about Gaunce’s performance on October’s #1 line. But can we have Granny back?
Next stop on the never-losing-steam-just-points express is up the coast to the Shark tank on Saturday. In San Jose there must be a way to get back to 500 hockey again. Because the last stop next week is LA and they’ve never been a great rail town.
Enjoy the rest of your miserable night and have a happier tomorrow.