Ok, so we knew the last home game of 2017 wasn’t going to go well. And didn’t. Started well and ended at the bottom of the well where we Canucks fans save our tears for a rainy day. Which makes no sense. But neither does this season.
And we kinda knew the first home game of 2018 wouldn’t go too well either. And if you’re one who gazes closely into the abyss of scoring and stats...uh...the view is abyssal. With a soundtrack of droning made from fan groans echoing off the empty seats.
Here’s what it sounded like pre-game on the official Nucks feed.
Many have been shouting from blogtops and twitterspires about getting Nilsson more starts. Your voices were heard in the Green room. Hope you’re happy now.
There was a time when it was ok for our goalies to allow the odd softie. That time is over. It was over the day after the Faeries plucked Bo from the ice and put his foot on ice in the pressbox infirmary.
56 seconds. That’s how long the air in the ROG lasted before it was gasped out in one single breath of horror and disbelief.
The Ducks Henrique throws a puck at the net from below the goal line. It hits Nilsson. No big deal. A nothing shot that hits his pads, creeps up his stick, over his arm and flutters into the net. This isn’t your usual softie. This is soft enough to be deflating. Or worse, a deflating omen.
It’s not like the period is going to end 2-zip for the Water Fowl. No, that’s exactly how it ended.
Shots are 12-11 for the Disneybirds. So a tie. A tie in the weakest colours available in the empty Nucks discount 2-for-12 Win Shop.
I want to say that the Canucks made a strong comeback. And they did. I want to say the Canucks kept the Ugly Ducklings in their own end. And they did. Then in the first Ducky rush up the ice they let Getz in front of Nilsson to screen, tip and score.
I want to say the Nucks answered back with 3 goals of their own ending the period in a tie. There’s no ties available at that exact colour of blatant lie, so I won’t.
But, let’s pretend this all, or just one, happened in this game.
Period ends 3-0 for the Fugly Ducklings, who didn’t have to try hard to put the game out of reach. Nucks win the 2nd period shot count trophy 12-6. There is a trophy for that, right?
Our good old #1 goalie is looking good with a goosegg on his jersey. Dammit. We had to let Millsie go, because we’re rebuilding and because he likes Juice better than us.
No worries tho. It gets better. If you’re a Vote Marky “Make the Net Great Again” supporter.
In the first minute of the 3rd....Nilsson misplays the puck which ends in an easy tap-in for Vermette. No worries tho, it was Nilsson’s last misplay of the game.
Green puts Marky in the net to hold the four-goal-down fort and we’re all set for some riveting comeback hockey.
Unfortunately, while we were set and ready for it, the comeback kids had already taken the plane to the eastern provinces.
No worries tho, because Marky didn’t let in another softie. Nope. It was a laser from some local kid, Derek Grant, who deserted Canada to work for the Cali mob. On the play it was the Nucks D deserting their job of defending against easy setups in front of the net.
No worries tho, because the game ended in regulation. And our former #1 goalie got his 2nd shutout of the season. Fugling Ducks win 5-0. Even our Boest was held off the board - two game goaless streak. No worries tho, the Boest rookie in the game will be back on the Boest goals of the night. He will, right?
The season of giving hasn’t ended just yet for the Canucks - they keep rewarding former teammates. Because that is what the game is all about. For the IR Faerie game at least.
We saw last year when goals were hard to get, even at retail, never mind wholesale group discounts. This year, it’s been a little easier negotiating with the score fairies. Not tonight tho. All 31 offers were refused.
Here’s what Hank had to say about that.
“We’re battling and doing everything we can, but it’s very tough when you’re not scoring goals.” - Henrik Sedin— Vancouver Canucks (@Canucks) January 3, 2018
Especially when your defence isn’t defending very well (Tanev was back. Yay! And -3 on the night. Ugh!).
And both your backup goalies are struggling with their rubber stopper duties.
“I’m not stopping as many shots as I did before. I’ll keep practicing and working hard on every detail and will work my way out of this.” - Nilsson— Vancouver Canucks (@Canucks) January 3, 2018
Not blaming the coach on putting Nilsson in net to face a revitalised fowl army of shooters. No, have to blame the Nucks TwitterFeeders. They set Nilsson up before the game started with this little game prep expose.
"For a goalie, the mental aspect is a big part of the game." - Nilsson reveals how he gets in the zone before puck drop. pic.twitter.com/nJvJIQFJMG— Vancouver Canucks (@Canucks) January 2, 2018
No one should ever get an inside look at a goalie’s mental prep. It’s like the Jedi Book of Secrets - not even Lucas can know what’s inside. Lose the mystery. Lose the game. Thanks, Nucks TwitterFlitters!
Speaking of solid defence...must not make an offensive comment.
Own the Game. The game ownership for this one was more like a sub-prime mortgage on a rotting miner’s shack outside Moria.
Over in the Green room, tho... didn’t feel like a 5 nothing loss.
"You can't look back and dwell on it, you can only look forward to the next game." - Coach Green pic.twitter.com/88Cmk7S4NN— Vancouver Canucks (@Canucks) January 3, 2018
Throw this one on the tire fire, stay warm in the glow of knowing that Injury Faeries don’t know the Nucks road trip schedule. So far. Let’s keep it that way, k?
To be fair, the Nucks PK was flawless. Didn’t allow any goals on the two Duck extra attack birds chances. And the Nucks power play was equally flawlessly flawed. Didn’t get any goals on 4 PP passing sessions. Just clean up 5 on 5 and we’re good.
Or not. 2 wins in the last 12 games makes for quite a mid-season dip. A dip that is deep and wide like the vast wingspread of a flock of injury faeries giggling about our gaggle of losses.
Perhaps this is a little soon, but some fashionistas say it’s never too soon when the draft is only five style-challenged months away.
While the tankeristas will be firing up their dirty dozen bad game engines, we civilians of NucksNation are well equipped to face adversity. Someday... a few drafts from now, we’ll be equipped to overcome it.
On the road again. It’s the best song in the Canucks repertoire. Hope they can keep the tune bouncy and tough to play against next Saturday. Because all the eyes and beaks of the HNIC big birds will be salivating to broadcast any Nucks weakness from the Center of the Universe.
Yes, it’s the MOST important game of 2018! The Nucks will be playing the MOST important team in the game! In the MOST important rink in the world! At the last MOST important game of the season the Canucks beat the MOST important team in the universe in our least important home rink. That was back when we had our all our important forwards. So....
Something important to look forward to. Have a happy 2018, NM! What’s left of it.