On the other side of centre ice, Willie Desjardins has had 37 different players on his bench for the second season in a row. Playing musical chairs with your lineup can’t be easy and this team has to hope from some stability in the upcoming seasons in order to get back on track.
The recently acquired Drew Shore made his Canuck debut tonight against the Boston Bruins. After picking up 24 Goals & 24 Assists in 50 games, he finished third in goals for the Swiss A League this season.
Speaking of players who are third in the league for goals, Brad Marchand’s 32 goals was good for third in the NHL heading into tonights game. He had 11 points in his past 8 games and wasn’t about to slow down in Vancouver.
7 minutes into the game, Patrice Bergerons pass deflected off of the skate of David Backes and into the net. It wasn’t the prettiest goal but the visiting team would take it for the 1-0 lead.
Alex Edler earned himself a trip to the penalty box after tripping a Bruin. Despite a dangerous looking power play, the Canucks were able to fend off the Bruins with much of the credit going to Ryan Miller.
When Drew Stafford put the Canucks on the man advantage, Vancouver’s power play continued to show a severe lack of productivity. This has been a huge issue these past few seasons and something has got to change.
Alex Biega was throwing his weight around once again in tonights game. It’s refreshing to see a player in green and blue making some hits consistently.
As the period neared its final 4 minutes, the Sedins made some sharp passes to set up Markus Granlund in front of the net. With Henrik Sedin providing the screen, Granlund was able to get the puck pas Tuuka Rask.
Just minutes later, Granlund found himself on the receiving end of some more brilliant passing from Henrik and Daniel. By keeping his stick on the ice and his head in the game, he scored his second of the game and 19th of the season.
Ryan Miller continued to make saves as the second period kicked off. With Vancouver giving up a number of chances to Boston, their goaltending was their only saving grace.
The Canucks had a chance to increase the lead on the power play and couldn’t capitalize. It’s pretty depressing that this isn’t even mildly surprising right now.
As the period passed the halfway mark, Sven Baertschi made a slick move around Patrice Bergeron. Despite a great effort, he couldn’t get off a strong shot on net.
A little dipsy-doo from Baertschi. pic.twitter.com/HHbf1rsqCK— Vancouver Canucks (@Canucks) March 14, 2017
After the Canucks failed to clear the puck out of their end, Zdeno Chara took a shot with some range and beat Miller from
21 seconds later, Alex Edler received a long pass from Drew Shore and took a slap shot as he entered the zone. The rebound found its way back to Edler’s stick and his follow up shot squeaked by Rask to give the Canucks the lead once again.
The pass from Drew Shore gave him his first period as a Canuck.
Minutes later, Nikita Tryamkin had a great chance on net after he joined the rush. While he couldn’t put it away, I always like to see the defence get involved in the offensive zone. The lack of scoring from the blue line has been another sore spot this season.
Reid Boucher has been playing well again this game, throwing hits and generating rebounds with his heavy shot.
With 20 seconds left in the period, Drew Shore pulled on Zdeno Chara’s jersey and earned himself a holding penalty.
While Shore sat in the box, he was applauded for his first point by the home crowd. However, the good times were short lived when Brad Marchand scored on the power play with a strong backhand into the open net.
The Canucks were caught watching David Pastrnak behind the net and paid for it.
Vancouver struggled to keep up with Boston as the third period continued. Clearing attempts became turnovers, shot attempts turned into odd man rushes and passes couldn’t find their target.
With the Canucks collapsing under the sustained pressure of the Bruins offence, things were looking bleak despite the 3-3 tie. All of these elements came to a head when Brad Marchand made his way to the middle of the ice off the boards.
After some nifty moves, Marchand beat multiple Vancouver players to put the puck behind a sprawling Ryan Miller.
Any attempt at a comeback was deftly stymied by Bostons aggressive play. Vancouver struggled to find a way to get the puck out of their own end, let alone a shot on Tuuka Rask.
Vancouver showed some signs of life at the 4 minute mark but momentum quickly turned the other way when the puck returned to the Vancouver zone. With David Pastrnak approaching the net from the behind, he sent a quick pass over to a streaking David Krejci for the insurance marker.
In the final minutes of regulation, Brad Marchand completed the hat trick when he found the back of the empty net. His 35th goal of the season ties him with Sidney Crosby for the league lead.
Hats on Rogers Arena ice for a Marchand hat trick.— Wyatt Arndt (@TheStanchion) March 14, 2017
This season can end now.