Wow! Does this team listen to their coach or what? Pregame, Green was adamant that the guys shutdown the most offensive line in the league. And he demanded they play a close one goal game. The kids delivered.
Kept it a one goal game - over 6 times! That’s drinking your coach’s kool-aid and asking for free refills.
More importantly, scored the last goal in this one goal goalie igniting, ROG raising, owner tweeting, barn burning game.
What a wonderful night to a be Canucks player. An amazing night to be a Nucks fan. And a terrible night to be a Canucks goalie. Oh well... 2 out of 3 is good enough for 2 out of 3 of us.
There’s so much to see in this multi-pointed parade of puckery - let’s get pucking.
To start the first, under strict instruction from the bench, the Nucks kept the Avs at bay.
And they enforced the NM Gamethread Code Section 128, paragraph 48:
Always score the first goal.
Early is good too.
In the first minute? Sure. Why not?
Pete sends a Petey-perfect stretch pass to a freshly all-legged-up Brock for the breakaway.
Brock gets his first of the night. The Nucks have the lead. We’ve won the game!
Thanks for reading.
Green’s carefully choreographed close ‘n tight game plan is playing tighter than Franny’s tweets. It’s 2018 and now it’s a billionaire’s prerogative to tweet to his wage slaves and serfs with pithy in-game 140 character insights.
Colorado Avalanche take on @Canucks tonight. As an experiment, I’m going to live-tweet during the game, sharing thoughts about the team and season so far.— Francesco Aquilini (@fr_aquilini) November 2, 2018
While the team owner was experimenting with his smartyphone, the Nucks were playing hard checking low event hockey just as prescribed by Travis.
How hard? Very. They were even rewarded with two powerplays. Reward in the flexible meaning of it. No Nucks goals were scored during the punitive playtime for the Avs. At least the refs were semi-involved early. Later in the game...well. Not so much.
Could we have asked for a more perfect 1st? Maybe, but this was a perfect low event, stingy, goalie-duelling standoff. And the Nucks held the lead on the scoreboard and the shot clock 8-6.
One third of the way to a safe boring win over the league’s most offensive top line. Keep it simple, safe and steady and we can squeak out another one goal win.
You know what they say about safety.... Safety first. They don’t say safety 2nd in the 2nd.
Especially in Colorado. Where 2016’s worst team is now in the league’s top 10. Rebuilds can work. Who knew?
Burnaby Joe, sure, he knew since the Duchene trade where the Avs were going. So does local Vancouver kid, Kerfoot. His shot is defected past Marky by Dries.
Not a MarkSoftie™ so, we’re not worried. So far.
But there’s a strict Green plan to keep to. Keep the game tight. Don’t let the Avs get the lead. Pete knows what’s needed.
Some Sedinery. So he performs an unrehearsed Sedin tribute move with Brock playing Danny to Pete’s Hank bank style.
Great tribute! Wow! Brock has 2 goals. Pete has 2 points. ROG has goosebumps. And cheers. Gamethread has knocked over a couple rounds while leaping off the couch.
Both Nucks goals are highlight reels. Both display Pete’s amazing spacial sense and sense for the unexpected. And Brock’s ability to expect the unexpected.
The Nucks are back on top. 2-1. It’s a one goal game of the best kind. We’re leading.
Some have noted in the gamethread what a chippy team the Avs can be. And what a total douchemonkey Calvert is. He cheapshots Brock with a brutal crosscheck. We’re all going...
Nooooooooooooooooooo! And in earlier games we feared the faeries.
Tonight we weren’t threatened by such a douchey dirty uncalled hit on our star winger. Because...
As soon as they had played fetch on the bench with Brock for a bit, the tuckered puck faeries went for a nap so Brock could return to the game.
And what a game Brock returned to. A close low scoring game, was getting a little too close to not being low scoring.
Cole, who earned a spot for another Avalanchee on the NM cheapshot artist list later in the game, fired a blast from the point that eluded Marky. Ugh.
It’s back to tiesies. Again. No worries.
Because we’re going to witness a 6 million dollar miracle. No, we didn’t win the 6/49. This is something more rare. Our Littlethinger slung a puck past the stop-every-second-shot Grubauer.
Boom! Just like that. Like clockwork really. The Nucks have scored to regain the lead. Guds and point-a-game Gaunce have the assists.
It’s 3-2 Nucks at the end of the second.
Except the period clockwork was still ticking. So were the Avs top line.
Which shooter on that line does Marky fear most? The correct answer is... all of them. MacKinnon fires a wrister past Marky, who was not in a good position to receive, stop or halt the zippy shot. Ugh.
Oh well. The tight-game Green plan is still on track. Just with a looser grip on the reins of the righteous rogues of ROG.
A tie. No big deal. The Nucks can get that MarkyHardy™ right back, right?
Not exactly right now.
Because, Vancouver’s own hot-footed, Kerfoot busts through center ice and splits our crack-AHL defence pairing like kindling on a cold night in Whistler. And scores on a wait-just-a-dammed-second Marky. Ugh.
Avs for the 1st (but not the last) time lead the Nucks, 4-3.
The Green plan is looking a little brown in places. The close game thing is still in play tho. It’s still a one goal game - just not the one goal game we’ve been accustomed to.
No worries. We got this. Or Pete’s got this. In tight. In the dirty area where greasy goals are served fresh and well-greased. Stech and Roussel with the oily apples.
Pete is so poised. Poised and ready to pounce on every play. Wow!
Order and chaos is restored in the ROG. The place is going craaaaaazeeee. The gamethread is going nuttycheezballsbazerk.
One period. 7 goals exchanged. And it’s a 4-4 tie game at the end of this really close high tension run ‘n gun blowup all the goalies game.
Colorado is high on the shot counter 12 to 8. The ROG is high on the young guns play. And the in-game tweets from the loquacious Franny.
Fast, exciting hockey. Gotta love it.— Francesco Aquilini (@fr_aquilini) November 3, 2018
Green wanted the Nucks to keep the game tight and close. One out of two ain’t so bad.
The gamethread was ready for the 3rd. So were the Avs.
What about point-a-game, defensive specialist Gaunce? Not quite. He bobbles the puck at the Avs blueline. Bulldog is about to cover for him, but has second thoughts or something.
Zadorov steals the puck from our two too polite players and goes in on Marky. Who at just that moment forgets all the Clarke wisdom of keeping a little taller stance and performs his shrinking Marky impersonation that so delighted us last season. Shot clears Marky’s shoulder, probably by a foot using Westy math. Ugh.
No worries in the gamethread. Ok. Fine. Some flashback goalie sieve worries flash through our Canuckled consciousness like a tire fire on Granville.
Avs have the lead. Again. And it’s not fair, because I like typing the Nucks have the lead again more. It’s 5-4 Colorado Avarice.
Still, before we have a chance to crack - there’s a crack Nucks powerplay: Second division.
But before we get to that part. Let’s recall how we got there.
Cole assaulted Motte. Smashed him in the head and then knocked his head into the Avs goalpost which knocked the goalposts off. Which is how the refs noticed something wasn’t quite right and blew play down. Motte was still down.
But not out. And the nonthreatening puck faeries were fast asleep on the trainer’s couch. The official record states that Ian Cole was called for Interference against Tyler Motte. NHL officials, so understated. And unreliable.
No matter. We get a powerplay and the 1st unit almost looked dangerous. But in a tight game, almost is not enough. Bring in the clutch unit. The leftovers. The 2nd unit.
Granny. The Finnish finisher. On his second shot. On the second unit. Wooo!
The never-give-up, #relentless Nucks are back in this
low high scoring tight game.
Are we getting some goal fatigue in the gamethread? Maybe. And we’re all secretly thinking let’s just get to this to OT and finish them off. If the Cowtowners can do it, so can we.
Except, the Avs having been on the wrong end of that Red OT, wanted to get a road win. Greedy bastards. This is our rink. Our house. Our ROG. No one defeats us in our special place. Unless you’re the Pens, then it’s an acceptable once-in-a-decade event.
No matter. The not-giving-up Avs get a visiting team makeup gift from the refs. A weak Bo tripping penalty against the newly gravitationally-challenged Landeskog.
While the Avs powerplay, with the league’s most offensive line, wasn’t too offensive in their first turn of the extra 2 minute man, this time...well.. Guds was shoved into Marky and MacKinnon gets an open net gift. Thanks game management mavens.
And that’s it. Less than 2 minutes to go, Avs lead 6-5. Some ROG parking lot leaders were seen leaving the ROG. Thinking they were smart to miss the rush.
Except they missed the best rush of the game. A self-made Nucks powerplay. They pull Marky - who at this point was happy to leave early - and go ridiculously relentless 6-on-5 in the Avs end.
Bo bulls over Landeskog in a sweet bit of poetic payback and sends a sweet pass out front to our Sneaky Pete who rifles a sweet shot into overtime.
The ROG goes freakin’ LOUD! The gamethread goes YEEEEEHAAAW!
The game goes on. The tight close game has stuck to the Green keep-it-tight plan. Again. For like the sixth time.
In OT Pete gets a breakaway and gets slashed down by fast footspeeder, Kerfoot. Penalty shot for sure. Peter had a clean line to the net. It’s a no brainer call.
So the no brainer callers call a penalty. Fine. Whatever. 4 on 3 powerplay gives our first unit more space to make the fleet-footed Kerfoot feel less than fleet.
He gets to watch a league record get set. And Pete to get his 5th point on the night. On the game winning goal from Pouliot! Wooooooooo!
Flukey? Hardly. That was hard work and good puck luck. The Nucks have been working hard all season and due for a little luck. Since 2012. But who’s counting.
Pouliot now holds an NHL record. He has scored 6 goals in his NHL career. All 6 were game winners. Ergo, all Derrick’s NHL goals have been game winners! Freak record. But he’ll take it. And so will we.
Wow! That was an amazing game to watch. Let’s see it again. Without those 10 minutes when there was no scoring.
This game was incredible. Exactly as the thrifty Green plan planned it out. Good tight, close game. With a grotesque number of goals - for a goalie to allow. Marky’s SV% was a no-fun .793. Ouch! His worst GAA of the season too. 6 goals on 29 shots. Ouch. Grubauer didn’t fare much better with his .811 SV%, allowing 7 goals on 37 shots.
Yes, 37 shots. The Nucks out shot the Avs 37-29, out shot the league’s most offensive first line.
There’s so many stats to cover, but let’s start with this:
Elias Pettersson of the @Canucks is the 16th player in League history to score 9+ goals through his first nine career games and just the sixth to do so outside of the NHL’s inaugural season. #NHLStats #COLvsVAN pic.twitter.com/jgfwBmiUHN— NHL Public Relations (@PR_NHL) November 3, 2018
We were hoping in a few years that Pete would become our number one center to replace Hank. Pete only needs a few games for that. While this was the Nucks 15th game, it was only Pete’s 9th, because of
[redacted] [redacted] [redacted] [redacted] Matheson.
DCR tallied the stunning rookie stats for Pete in the gamethread:
Dekey Pete ranks 1st in points with 15 and a 7 point lead over 2nd place.
1st in goals with 9 and a 5 point lead over 2nd place.
2nd in assists with 6, and trailing the leader by 1 point.
2nd in +/- with 6, and trailing the leader by 1 point.
No other rookie ranks in the top 2 in more than one offensive category.
Elias is the first Canuck in this century to record 5 points in one game. And it was only his
15th 9th NHL game. A teenage hockey guru is our scoring leader. What poise on the ice and in front of the mic. We are privileged to enjoy such an immense talent and gracious guy.
Despite the five-point night, @_EPettersson is still looking for ways to get better. pic.twitter.com/kJwiZBIyG6— Vancouver Canucks (@Canucks) November 3, 2018
Here’s our other Swedish twin, by way of Minnesota, talking about his 2 goal, 4 point game. Brock is back, baby!
"I was focused on getting shots tonight...and if I have that mindset, I can produce more and more for the team." - @BBoeser16 after a two-goal night against the Avalanche. pic.twitter.com/6y8uI2cNUJ— Vancouver Canucks (@Canucks) November 3, 2018
What a night! What a game!
Loui gets a goal (finally). Granny gets a PP goal. Goldy gets 2 points. Bo, Gaunce, Roussel, 1 point each as did Guds, Stech and Hutton.
And Pouliot nets the GWG. Just as I predicted in the SPW. (Or will when I get this DeLorean phonebooth up to 88).
Over in the Green room, it was all smiles as the team followed his tight Green game plan closely. Over and over. And over.
Hear from Coach Green following a #Canucks Friday night victory over the Avalanche, live from @RogersArena. https://t.co/Wor8dN8ipX— Vancouver Canucks (@Canucks) November 3, 2018
I could go on and on about this game. Is it the best game this season in the ROG? Sure, let’s say it is and slumber through the weekend with visions of #1 in the Pacific floating by.
We’re #1! In the Pacific!
3 lofty games above 500. And I’m not making it up.
And when you look at the league standings...you’re not dreaming.
We’re #2! In The Entire League!
If the playoffs started today. Well...if they did... we’d be in them. Ok. Just 15 games into the season - not going to discount the remaining 67 tilts at the windmills of SCF possibility. But, there’s an eerie parallel to this season’s relentless Nucks team - last year’s Vegas expansion newbies. No one expected great things from them. And even less from the Nucks, only the first season into the real ‘re’ part of the rebuild.
Enjoy the road trip into the eastern provinces. Nucks settle into MotorCity on Tuesday to play the 29th place Wings. Who wants to follow the Detroit model now?
Savour this tight run and out gunned ‘em game for days. Have a wonderful weekend and a better next week.