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RECAP: NUCKS DON’T WIN! Chewed Up 5-2 By Brad And The Yotes

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Eddie and Thatcher were shaky 1st game back. Matched with their teammates perfectly.

NHL: Vancouver Canucks at Arizona Coyotes
No one is ready for the Desert sniper
Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports

Pop Quiz:

Brad Richardson has 2 career hat tricks.

How many did he have as a Canuck? None.

How often has Brad Richardson scored 4 goals in a game? Never.

(FYI: Richie had his first hattie back in 2010 with LA)

Bonus Round:

How many times have the Nucks defeated the Yotes this season? Zero.

Anyhow, question period is over and we can move onto the dissection section of our miserable recap.

Eddie is back. And he’s not ready. Thatcher is back on the roster. And he’s not ready.

And neither are the rest of Canucks. They’re tired and primed for a long night of defensive breakdowns. Perfect storm. Level 4 Brad-force storm.

Last time the Canucks allowed a single player to score 4 against was in 1998 by John LeClair on the Legion of Doom. You know who was Vancouver’s coach and captain then. Of course you do and there’s no need to aggravate that scarred fan memory tissue.

There’s enough aggro to fill at least 60 minutes right now.

1st Period

Despite not getting to their hotel in beautiful Glendale, AZ until 3AM, the Nucks had more jump than their mile high start the night before.

That ‘jump’ wasn’t sustainable in the face of hockey gods gone wild.

Early shot advantage was to the Yotes. As was their first goal. Off the stick of soon-to-be hockey god’s fav son legend, Brad Richardson.

Brad was resting and waiting in the box while the Nucks first power play was failing. Just as the failure ended, it got failed again.

How many times did we see Richie swoop in a score like that when he played for us? Take your time, we’ve got most of April to think about it.

However, all is not lost, even if the game is.

New hot shot sniper Pearson is sprung on a breakaway by a perfect pass from Spooner. Sweet shot that handcuffs Kuemper.

It’s tied 1-1.

Savour it. For maybe a minute.

The hockey gods are in a hurry to get their favoured son on the board again. With a shot that Thatch woulda/coulda/shoulda had.

Ugly goal for the Coyote ugly lead.

2-1 after the first, but it felt like more. And will soon enough.

2 goals on 6 shots isn’t a good start for Thatcher’s first game back. Flashbacks of his shelling in the 7-2 loss to the Sharks was probably fogging up his mask.

2nd Period

We know the Nucks are tired. Eddie is getting 1st pair minutes and his skating hasn’t improved in his time with the Faery Godskaters.

The desert dogs of hockey break in 2 on 1. The trailer is... well you know... and Brock is trailing the trailer... Richardson’s 2nd career hattie is on the board!

Congrats, Brad. Where the hell was that in 2015 when we needed it?

It’s a 3-1 Yotes lead. Could it get worse?

Yes, it could. Because the Nucks aren’t getting enough to handle with their tired PK, Rous lets loose with an ill-timed high stick. (Only high stick when the refs aren’t looking).

So...on the 5 on 3, guess what happens... Another Richardson goal?

Good guess, but no. Have to save some humiliation for later.

It’s now 4-1 and the Yotes are controlling the scoreboard, the game, the hockey gods.

Possibly thanks to the extra attacking, the Yotes outshoot the tired Nucks 12-10.

3rd Period

There’s another period?

Yes. Not only is the NHL regular season uncomfortably long, so are many of the games.

And long enough for Rous to get some redemption. And another point for Vancouver’s hottest offensive defenceman, Bulldog.

Biega is on a 3 game point streak. Maybe put him on the power play with Pete, so he can streak again.

I want to say that the Nucks kept the comeback coming close. But...no. The hockey gods are pulling the strings and the shots.

And clogging the neutral zone with Swedish gravity wells. A bobbled pass from Eddie to Pete is bobbled out of the zone. To compensate Pete cheats on his check and his check meets Eddie for a fall down and watch confab.

Meanwhile...just as the hockey gods of Arizona have forewarned, their chosen one goes to the net of destiny and pops his 4th goal of the game past a disbelieving Thatcher.

There it is. NHL history in the desert. 4 goals, one castoff guy, one game. A historic league moment. The Nucks are part of legend now. The wrong side of the legend, but still...

One former Canuck outscores the entire team of current Canucks.

The tuckered Nuckers had a powerplay in the final minutes and a few shots got through, but the hockey gods can be as cruel to us as they can be kind to Richie.

The shots in the 3rd were 17-6 Nucks - that’s good. Just not good enough against the hottest goalie in the West.

Haven’t beaten the Yotes in 3 4 attempts this season. That’s ugly Coyote hockey. The masters of no-event hockey have out-evented the Nucks all season. Ugh-ly.

Even the 2 Johns can’t console us with their video repartee.

Biting Stats

SOG FO% PP PIM HITS BLKS GVA
Canucks
39 47% 0/3 10 29 11 6
Coyotes
24 53% 1/4 8 19 19 8


Dog Tired Stats

# Forwards GP G A P P +/- S PIM PIM SOG HITS BLKS GVA TKA FO% TOI PP TOI SH TOI PP GW
6 B. Boeser 0 0 0 0 -4 6 0 6 0 0 2 1 0 16:03 2:44 --:-- 0
15 R. Spooner 0 1 1 1 0 2 0 2 1 0 0 0 14:50 2:46 --:-- 0
17 J. Leivo 0 0 0 0 0 4 0 4 0 0 0 0 14:45 3:22 --:-- 0
21 L. Eriksson 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 1 0 0 0 1 12:32 --:-- 3:27 0
26 A. Roussel 1 0 1 1 1 3 2 3 3 0 1 1 13:28 --:-- 0:35 0
40 E. Pettersson 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 1 0 2 0 0 33 15:46 3:14 --:-- 0
53 B. Horvat 0 0 0 0 -4 1 0 1 1 0 0 1 38 16:23 2:44 --:-- 0
64 T. Motte 0 0 0 0 0 5 0 5 5 0 0 0 50 13:52 0:02 3:30 0
70 T. Pearson 1 0 1 1 1 2 0 2 1 0 0 0 15:21 3:14 2:22 0
77 N. Goldobin 0 0 0 0 -2 2 0 2 1 0 0 1 16:06 3:14 --:-- 0
83 J. Beagle 0 0 0 0 0 1 2 1 3 0 1 0 70 14:45 0:02 3:46 0
88 A. Gaudette 0 0 0 0 1 1 4 1 0 0 0 0 83 12:50 2:36 --:-- 0
# Defense GP G A P P +/- S PIM PIM SOG HITS BLKS GVA TKA FO% TOI PP TOI SH TOI PP GW
2 L. Schenn 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 1 4 1 0 0 14:56 0:02 2:10 0
23 A. Edler 0 0 0 0 -1 0 0 0 2 5 0 0 23:12 3:28 3:05 0
27 B. Hutton 0 1 1 1 -2 2 2 2 2 1 1 2 23:04 2:32 3:48 0
29 A. Sautner 0 0 0 0 1 1 0 1 1 0 1 0 13:30 --:-- --:-- 0
51 T. Stecher 0 0 0 0 -1 1 0 1 3 0 0 0 21:12 --:-- 4:49 0
55 A. Biega 0 1 1 1 0 5 0 5 2 2 0 0 17:44 --:-- 0:22 0
# Goalies GP REC GA SV SA S EV PP SH SAVE-SHOTS SV% PIM TOI GAA
35 T. Demko -- 19 24 18–22 1–2 0–0 19–24 .792 0 60:00


Ugh. From Demko through to Bo and Brock. Demko looked rough and shaky. The inexhaustible Bo look tired. Brock admitted his fake back check was too real. And so on.

Let’s just skip the full dissection and hear from Eddie, fresh back from facial surgery and 3 weeks of deep Faery silence.

Bad flashes and high sticks, Rous claims a goal for and one dumb penalty against.

In the desert stormed Green room, we heard Travis say:

“Showed a little immaturity in our game tonight... thought we shot ourselves in the foot a couple times in a game where there’s no way we can do that.”

Pete’s goal drought is 6 games. No assists in 4 of his last 5. The long, long NHL season is long and back-to-back games are longer.

And that’s our Faery February all wrapped up in a calendar full of Xs and few Ws.

4 Wins out of 14 games, a stretch run does not make. At least we got a couple loser points to take the edge off all the losing.

Some say there’s still a slightly higher than zero chance the Nucks will leap above the teams that are playing actual playoff-style hockey and claim the last seed on the bus to extended owner revenue.

Many others say this game displayed in stark detail the harsh reality of how bad our D is without Marky covering so many flaws. Granted it was expected that Eddie would be rusty first game back after 3 weeks in the BC Faeries boat. And Thatcher is barely AHL plus level after his extended hockey abstinence. However, the rest of the team is not playing like every shift counts, no matter what.

And that’s ok. This team has been surprisingly good for short stretches. Having Petey light up the lights and our hopes has been fun to watch. The schedule gets a little easier in March too.

Mainly home games against most of the worst teams in the league. Even if most are going to the post season, they’re still amongst the worst. Just for going to the post season is reason enough for the worst rating.

Our time will come. Maybe before the next lockout. Maybe during it.

Until then, keep your sharp little things focus on the big picture. And try to feel lucky. Because the Nucks are going to the city of luck. The city of sin and road wins. Vegas baby. If we’re lucky.

Have a sedentary Saturday and sensational Sunday afternoon at the roulette wheel of hockey.