First let’s get this out of the way. The Nucks can still score! Yay!
After the Valentine’s Eve fowl loss, we were muttering under our snow angels that Valentine’s might be remembered for unrequited goal scoring. Again.
No worries tho. The comeback kids were fully requited tonight. Although until the last couple minutes of the 3rd the re and the quit, even the never quit might have been in doubt.
And that’s all you can ask for. Guddy gives us fits of hysterical screaming and Pete gives us screaming fits of joy and Marky saves NucksNation from certain doomnation.
And here on the 14th of February, we witnessed a hockey Gaud assuring his place in the grand NHL puck palace. Woooo!
Atty & Spin were attending the game as well as the game thread. Which is like being impossibly two places at once. But at NM, impossible is only a word to be slurred at refs.
While the Faeries were celebrating Valentine’s splints and bandages with Sven, Sutts, Demko, Tanev and Virt, the Kings were waiting to deliver more Faery Fever.
So much to play for. Not so much roster left to lose. So it begins.
In the first. And first, the most improbable thing happened.
Yes, it was a Canucks goal. But even more improbably, more reality-defying, the Nucks score the first goal of the game - on the Power Play!
With some give ‘n go with Stech and Pete, Stetch sets up Pete for a sweet wrister treat that made the game thread sweet tooth ache for more goals of power in play.
Woooooooooooooo! PP Goal! We’re Wining!!!
For 8 seconds.
Right off the centered ice, the Kings get possession and that’s 9 tenths of the goal in SoCal.
Ugh. Good shot by some LA heartbreaker. Lucky for us, he only breaks hearts, not ties.
Game is 1-1 after one. Helps to build dynamic tension or something. Or just heartburn in the game thread.
Shots are tied 9-9 too. Pretty even between the next best thing to the 2nd seed and the
2nd to last team in the division.
In this period, the LA big boys, although more like the old big boys start to play the ‘heavy’ game. They were keeping the Nucks penned in and that was causing some issues not just for the Nucks, but fans as well.
Because Gaud is on our side. Not just an AHL hockey Gaud anymore.
He’s got some sneaky NHL moves and sets up Brock for the winning goal!
He’s not going back to demi-Gaud status. He’s going to keep his place even if Sutts is healed up tomorrow.
With the game fully in the Nucks control, the LA heavies get too heavy on the forecheck. Worse, our new heavy D, Brisebois had just crunched his check on the boards and freed the puck to be cleared by another Canuck. And then bad things happened.
Oh well. We busted the last tie, we can do it again.
In this period the shots were 17-8. Not fair. And neither was the Nuck PK. The killers killed 3 LA power plays in the period. The Nucks play better defensive hockey when they’re a man down.
So... the milk chocolate brains of the game thread braintrust melted during the intermission because we dared to think hot toddie thoughts of tie-breaking again.
And soon enough the tie would be broken.
Broken in the worst possible way. It wasn’t our young players than made the play for the go ahead goal.
No, much worse than that. It was one of former young players, Leipsic that suckered Brisebois to come join the puck-on-the-boards party that Guddy was already losing. The traitorous Lieper gets the puck and sets up the goal.
Former Nucks players can be so mercenary. And it’s Valentine’s FFS! Just because we shunned you is no reason get all Glenn Close on us.
It’s half way through the 3rd. LA has the lead. They’re playing the extra-heavy game. Even Kovalchuck is knocking over Bulldog.
While the game turned ugly the game thread turned uglier. The hot toddies and snow shovels were pointed at Atty for attending another game in SoCal where the Nucks lose by a goal.
K2 revealed the ugly truth of Nucks SoCal misadventures.
The Canucks are bad in SoCal - Because they party non stop at Atty’s place. Thats why he has inside scope from Greener. He’s not bumping into him on the concourse. Greener is drunk in his kitchen.
While Atty wasn’t able to defend himself from his poolside location at the rink, we knew it was probably true. Some blame the hapless power play, the greedy player-stealing Faeries or the miserable D - the real reason was better than Hollywood tinfoil hats.
On, on and on the LA sure-win dragged out. The LA crowd were kissing each other. A lot. According to Atty’s last known report at his not-so-secret Staples Center location.
The game thread was already writing it’s Dear Westy or Dear Kent letters with sordid tales of hockey fandom gone wrong in SoCal.
And then with less than two minutes left, Marky going to the bench to sulk, our Alien abducted both Doughty and Kopi, then passed the puck with his skate to our freshly anointed hockey Gaud who snapped a duly appointed snapper over Quick’s shoulder! Woooooooooooooo!
We’re tied! All is not lost. We get a point! If we can keep the tie for another minute. No eight second flashbacks occurred in either the game or the thread. We’re going to OT!
We get a point. The never give up kids didn’t.
The period is tied in shots 9-9. Again.
The Kings had more puck possession and chances. The Nucks had a couple of chances, but we in the game thread, still celebrating the tie, knew the tie would be broken in the best possible way. Cupid’s Shoot Out of in-net infatuation.
Sure, Marky wasn’t perfect, let in the first shot from Kovi. But no others.
Quick wasn’t quick enough for Pete who was getting his deke on. Could watch this until next Valentine’s. Sweeeeet!
Brock can win it - and the Flow stops and pops a shot low glove on the not quite Quick enough.
Another never quit effort made the sure loss a sweet win.
The two happy Johns celebrate with us rather than whatever misery was so last night.
This was a MUST WIN game. Just like last night’s. But even more.
The 2nd seed is still just close enough to see the furry parts sticking out. Keeps us wondering where it might take root.
Never Quit Stats
|#||Forwards||GP||G||A||P||P||+/-||S||PIM||PIM||SOG||HITS||BLKS||GVA||TKA||FO%||TOI||PP TOI||SH TOI||PP||GW|
|#||Defense||GP||G||A||P||P||+/-||S||PIM||PIM||SOG||HITS||BLKS||GVA||TKA||FO%||TOI||PP TOI||SH TOI||PP||GW|
Goldy was back in the lineup...because Faery dust and stuff. He looked a little rusty, had two high-danger giveaways and worse, missed the open net that would have put gold stars on his Valentine’s card from Travis.
Just when I thought Guddy was playing better in this game - he did make some good passes out of the zone. Pretty sure it was more than one, but he was on the ice for every goal against. A coincidence? You decide.
Last night I stated that the ducked-up game was Pete’s best. I lied. This game was his best of the season. So far. Not only was he dekey Pete in the o-zone, he was a force in the d-zone. And the Nucks need more force in the d-zone. Pete’s complete compete level is on another level.
Anyhow... Pete’s streak is back and getting into some lofty places.
Thanks to a 1G-1A effort vs the Kings on Thursday, Elias Pettersson is now alone in 8th among this group of all-time @Canucks rookies. He now needs just 8 more to set the record here pic.twitter.com/cwPJclQwvN— StatsCentre (@StatsCentre) February 15, 2019
In the portable Green room, we heard Travis say...
“They hung in there right to the end. “
Hung in until they hung out Quick to catch sad loss poems of LA sports media intermediaries.
Want to hear the voice of Gaud? Sure, we can do that. Hint: It’s not the LA tap water.
Brock is winning hearts and games.
The Canucks have had 7 Injury Faery interventions in 2 weeks. The first D-pair were both out for this game. Yikes!
Stetch stepped up, played smart, got a PP assist. Over 30 minutes of ice time - had more time than even pouty Doughty. Has Stech earned Green’s trust? Just 32 minutes of it.
Brisebois looked pretty solid on his debut. Had his helmet knocked off while defending and immediately skated to the bench - it’s a penalty in the AHL to continue on the ice without. Not in the NHL, but no one had time to tell him that. Some say he ended with a -2 because he was paired with Guddy.
Gaudette looked like he has played in the NHL all season. With an assist and the game-about-to-be-won tieing goal, he made the game thread candy hearts flutter - just before we ate them all.
The powerplay went 1 for 2, which is a massive 50% rate - small sample size. Dammit. But without that PP goal there’s no win and Atty would be picking out poisoned candy arrows from his undisclosed kitchen location.
It didn’t look like a sure road win in the bowels of SoCal, but the never-quitters made our Valentine’s date with the TV deeply fulfilling.
Let’s just stay in the warm glow of this road win until late, really late, very late Friday night.
Because Saturday... well...it’s back to the other Shark Tank. With a depleted roster. But, 1 win in SoCal is still better than none at all.
Have a fabulous Friday and a super delish Saturday.