Remember Thursday’s 44 shot practice in San Jose? We need to have more of those types of practices - consistently.
First, let’s get this out of the way...
Thank you for your patience and understanding while the NM Recap bunker goes bonkers.
The MOST important game of the season and the Nucks not only played real good they WON super good!
Goals from everywhere! Assists from Goalies! Hitting hard! Hard on the puck! Hard on the
Not saying it was the best game the team has played in the ROG this season. I’m saying this was the best game the team has played this season. The BEST!
Against a big bad team that’s been tearing up the east since December. Against a team that remains on NM’s official non-naming taboo list. I can’t even tell you booo or what we beat. It’s that taboo in here.
In case you missed the most important thing about this game, here it is again:
And the Nucks did. In style. Early. And often. Frequently even.
No one in the eastern hockey media cabal saw this game winning game coming from the Nucks. It was predicted to be another demoralising loss at home in front of the harsh HNIC off-colour broadcast team. The league had the desired on-ice officials in place for the tilted-ice. It was the beast of the east vs the pest of the west. Good TV. Out east.
HNIC was already in a bad mood too. The MOST important team in the universe had been beaten earlier by the not-that-important current champs. What was a confirmation-bias exercise writ large in ice strokes, became an unconfirmed rumour of gas shortages.
No matter. We know what’s important. We know what’s at stake. And so do the Canucks. All of them. Even Loui. Our 6 million dollar man had some history, something to prove to his former
A little heart palpitation in NucksNation (and HNIC glee) when we saw Nilly in net instead of the regularly scheduled, Marky. Nilsson found out after the morning practice. Some claim, it was not enough prep time. They were mistaken. Nilsson does better when he doesn’t stay up all night over-thinking or worrying about letting in a Noftie® at a bad moment.
What we sort of kinda knew from November Loui is that he has the ability to hockey pretty good. Sometimes tho...the interest in the hockey seems to drift. Not tonight.
Loui activated early. Like he likes to mix it up in front of the net. Who knew?
Just watch the one highlight. Patience, you greedy little goal addict.
It’s an all Swedish goal-meet. Dank and Eddie with the helpers.
1-0 Canucks. The LEAD! In the FIRST two minutes!
It’s a miracle! Not really. It’s just really, really important.
So...when’s the miracle part, jimmi, when? Soon enough. Soon enough.
The Nucks are on the scoreboard first, playing hard. Hitting hard. Throwing the road-weary uninvited visitors back on the heels of their skates. Or pulling skates out from under them.
At the 6 minute mark, Pouliot goes off for tripping. The renowned eastern block power play gets to play with the early game management ploy. Without success. The Nucks PK is perfect. And it would need to be since the specially selected ref had lots of management in mind.
Nucks still leading and pushing for the extra-equaliser. You can never have too many of those.
Since the artists of the passing poetry had practised real good on Thursday, they went to the forecheck canvas and drew a sweet stick feathered pass to a wide open Dank. Who painted the net in puck - a fan fav colour.
Wow! The old and stale have still got some fresh moves and skillz.
2-0 Nucks. The game is over! Wooo!
But, HNIC, the refs and those guys who shall not be named want to keep playing. Playing for the win. Ha! They’re playing for their own immortal hockey humiliation. On HNIC. If the Sicilian culture was more into hockey culture, this is how they would have played the best-served-cold vengeance gambit.
Because...the Nucks are just getting started. If you recall that delightful devastation in Dallas, getting 3 or more goals in the first makes the magical momentum move more magnificently.
Miracle #1. You asked for it. Here it is. On the next Nucks goal...so many to keep track of...Nilly gets what every goalie secretly wants. An assist on an end-to-end goal.
In what might appear as a simple clear behind the net to Stech turns into a stretch pass from Stech to Bo. And Bo does what he does so well...bolls past the D, cuts to the net and puts the puck up top past the raskcalian goalie. Beautiful. Sweet, juicy rush with a puck on top.
Nilsson ➡️ Stecher ➡️ Horvat ➡️ pic.twitter.com/UoPdnOkiB9— Vancouver Canucks (@Canucks) February 18, 2018
Great work by Stech. May not be suited for net-front cleaning janitor duties, but he can skate and move the puck probably better than any D-man on the team.
Should be enough of a lead for anyone...but not in the MOST important must-win game of the year. Insurance. We want double-dipped drenching in stick-fresh scoring insurance.
And we get it.
From the guy that Green scratched. Sventabulous finish to a play that Brock and Bo rocked and rolled into scoreboard sensationalism.
Technically...neither Bo nor Brock got an assist. But, sometimes getting a big win means going with the flow.
4-0 Canucks after 1. I repeat. 4-Nothing for the Canucks over the whimpering beasts of the east.
In a weird, yet totally satisfying way, the Nucks were outshot 18-9 in the period. But Nilly let nil in. Nihilistic goaltending for us is an infrequent, but sweet treat. In the gamethread we were paused to savour the stingy Nilly.
Meanwhile the recently ventilated Raskcal was going down the hall for an early retirement and bench nap.
Leading by 4 to start the second in the most MUST-WIN game of the year is a pretty good feeling.
How could we feel any better? I know. MOAR Nucks goals!
Once the goal greed spreads through the gamethread it becomes a force to be spent. Only on cheering the Nucks for more goals.
Jake decided that the Bo-rrific move to the net could be attempted on his wing with his line too. Powering into the zone with the power move we know he can, he drives the net puts a shot on the replacement goalie. The stand-in stopper makes the stop, but the rebound comes out to Dowd, who pounds it into the open net. Into. Not over. Dowd and proud of his 2nd of the year.
No skipping to the 3rd. We’re almost there anyhow. Because....
It’s 5-0 Canucks! Outshooting the opposition 10-8. Woooooooooooo!!!
The opposers get another power play. Another 2 minutes of wasted ref game management time. The Nucks PK is perfect. But, you knew that.
Leading 5-nothing after the 2nd is what we’ve not seen often enough from the Nucks this season. Ok...never. Doesn’t matter. In the most important game of the year, they’re leading. And even with the eastern-bias from the league’s eastern HQ, we get to keep the lead.
While the eastern blockers weren’t ready to give up, they pressed for a symbolic gesture. A hollow single measly goal. And they got it. No nil for Nilly. But no matter.
Miracle #2. On the flawless Nucks PK, the miracle that only the most optimistic NM Capologists can hope for became a shortie. For Loui! His 2nd goal of the game! A puck hounding net grinding puck-popping game capping goal of history.
Why the victorious vitriol? Well...let’s just say that thanks to the great work of the Nucks PK, the opposer’s PP was 0% for the game. The Nucks? Same. 0%. Ok, so the eastern beasters had a good PK too. Well....the easterners had 5 power plays they didn’t score on. The Canucks had 0 power plays. Seems a little unbalanced, no? Yes it was. And Travis took exception with the ref. Green used words with such emphatic impact that he was rewarded with a bench penalty.
Makes the shortie that much sweeter. And the biased NHL officiating that much more sour.
The Nucks have gone almost two games without a power play. Is it because the Nucks always play against teams of Lady Bing nominees? Or is that certain refs have such a dislike for us that their eyes deceive them through 120 minutes of full contact hockey? Or the powers-that-be want to avoid the awkwardness of awarding the Calder to a mean-nothing team in the western provinces. Without any powerplay ops, less chance for our Brockstar to make a bigger pitch for the trophy song case. Why, NHL, why? Please explain this gap in fair and balanced officiating. Oh..wait. You already consider your officiating world class. Small world.
We WIN the MOST important game of the year! The decade! Probably the century. So far.
Before we handout the cool kudos to...pretty much everyone on the team, let’s enjoy this extended video recap of this hard-hitting, must-winning, gloriously-paid-back game.
Want another look? Me too.
So many great performances...Guds was playing hard and hitting harder. Archie threw 5 hits. All the lines were scoring. The D were getting apples. Pouliot had 2, Eddie and Stech got 1 each.
It’s like all the heartache of weeks in the Injury Faerie Dungeon was washed away with a simple shellacking of a simpering team of scoundrels. Who have no name on NM.
Nilsson was easily the 1st star. Stopping all but 1 of 45 shots. The Nucks only unleashed 24 shots...outshoot 19-5 in third. That’s goalie-under-siege numbers.
No matter. We poked, prodded and plundered!
On this night we’re the better team. How do I know. Because... look at the graphic again.
Visual confirmation. Pictures don’t lie. And I don’t make them. Often enough.
Let’s hear from our heroes.
Our good-seeing Nilly.
"It's always nice to get a lot of shots when you see the puck well." - Nilsson on his 44 saves performance. pic.twitter.com/anXFKvZbcR— Vancouver Canucks (@Canucks) February 18, 2018
Our seldom heard Viking PK worker
"Nilsson was great in net for us and we scored some goals. It was nice to get the win, especially against a good team over there." - Eriksson pic.twitter.com/QAiBrobw7L— Vancouver Canucks (@Canucks) February 18, 2018
And over in the Green room, we’re having the most fun presser of the year!
Hear from Coach Green after a big win over the Bruins. ⬇️ pic.twitter.com/5Jx9ws3vSd— Vancouver Canucks (@Canucks) February 18, 2018
And that’s how the most important must-win game of the year was won. Woooooo!
Now, must rewind the PVR and watch this game again and again. And possibly more.
Next week is a new season. Do we care? Not now. Let’s just take the rest of the weekend off and have a tremendous next week.