What a difference a couple time zones make. Nucks play better at night. I watch better at night. NM game threads better at night. Everything is better at night. If the night finishes with a win over the best team in the West.
Coming into this game, the NM hockeyristas, who are like mental hockey ballerinas, but with less pink and more attitude, less pointy shoes and more pointy... where was I? Oh right, the ‘ristas had marked this game a probable loss. Calgary, as much as it pains me to type it, having been playing really, really well. And the league have rewarded them with more points than any other team not based in the retired hockey player mecca of Florida.
Also, Pete made me look like an idiot with my unfaithful spw prediction of Flame-won game. I like it when Pete makes me look like an idiot, unlike some of the thin-ego’d members of the Vancouver sports media.
You might feel in the age of league parity, the best team in the conference versus the 9th best isn’t a fair tussle. And for much of the 2nd it was not tusslicious at all.
It started well tho. And ended even better.
Nucks score the first goal. In the first minute. From Bo!
Woo! Bo has already matched his goal quota from last month. Scored 1 in January and now has 1 in February. He’s free to exceed his quota having charmed the snake early.
Nucks are on the board. Playing fast and loose.
The loose thing while defending can lead to puck gazing. The puck gazing can turn to red danger lights being flicked on. LittleThinger misses that little thing - the open Flame buring on Marky’s front door. Poof! It’s a tie game.
Marky’s shutout is ruined. The NM game thread’s fine upholstery is ruined by the impact of flinging fermented beverages and salty language across the internet.
Oh well. It’s just a tie. We know who likes to snap ties and snipe goals.
Freshly first-lined winger, Leivo, uses Brock as shot bait and snaps a wrister through the gaping gates of Rittich.
BammoZamboni! We’re leading the best team in the West, 2-1.
It doesn’t get any better than this.
No. It gets worse, before it gets better.
Bulldog can’t clear the puck. Which means neither did Poolie. This means the relentless pressure of the Flames 7th line (not fair they have such a deep team) results in a goalie-almost-interference bouncing puck ball that’s batted in by 18+ year old, Sam Bennett.
2nd flukey goal in as many (+1) games. Marky hates flukey goals against. We do too. That’s why we’re starting an internet petition to ban flukey goals from the game. With your support (plus millions in flukey bribes and NM admin skimming) we could change the hockey world into a game that’s no fluke.
Meanwhile... the tie continues until they blow the horn that signals there’s no more time to untie.
Why didn’t you mention the 2 power plays the Nucks had in the period? If you have to ask...will say that the Flames had no more success on their single PP than the Nucks had with 2. Although the Nucks were credited with 4 shots on it.
Calgarian shots were 13 to a Vancouverian 10. Close to a tie. Pretty evenly matched. So far.
The evenly part was wildly uneven to start the period. As well as the middle bit. And most of the end.
It wasn’t fair end-to-end action. Period. Seemed as if the Flames had decided they weren’t interested in giving the Nucks any good end time at all.
Past the midway point and the shots were 16-1 for the greedy visitors. Their ferocious forecheck was keeping the Nucks penned in. Captives of their own inability to remove a small, often unruly rubber disc from their own zone. The Nucks had to rely on their best rubber disc-wrangling player, Markstrom.
While Calgary goalie, Rittich was slurping water bottles and texting the full text of the appendix of LoTR, Marky has making high danger stop after medium danger stop after critical danger stop.
So much stopping. So little zone clearing. You know it won’t end well.
After several minutes of eternal forecheck, the check is cached. Ugh.
Biega got robbed on a call just before the goal - had his glove held when he was making the final, almost-certain clear. Game thread was certain he would have cleared it. Probably. Maybe.
Doesn’t matter. We’ve entered the playoff reffing section of the game.
Flames have the lead, the giant edge in play and o-zone time.
Going to skip the other tedious forechecking forays by the fired-up Flames.
Because this game could be - just imagine! - a teaser for a 1st round match up, there must be some brouhahaing. An almost line brawl broke out. After the whistles had settled, Jake and Backlund were in the in-game detention center.
Now we go off-planet, 4 on 4. To witness our Alien taking the game on his stick and passing it for a searing Brocket past the lonely Rittich.
Woooooooo!!! 3-3. All tied up. On just the 3rd Nucks shot of the period. Talk about conserving shot-taking energy. This eco-friendly goal scoring method could be the subject of a David Suzuki energy-saving documentary.
Late in the period, Neal took a penalty on Granlund. Just when the ineffective Nucks power play was looking ineffective, the 2nd unit came on the ice. Fortunately, Jake took an ‘accidental’ high sticking call. This relieved the PP pressure and turned up the Nucks PK heat.
The EP/Brock/Leaves line had 15 shot attempts through 2.
Nucks shots in the period: 5. Calgary shots: 20.
4x the shots and the same number of goals. Is Marky 4x better than Rittich?
Outshot 20-5, the Nucks still manage to get a goal, the tie and game thread high-fives for Marky. Just like they planned it.
Remember the games where the Nucks would give up a couple 3rd period goals and crush game thread giddiness? Me neither.
While the Flames still held the edge in play, outshooting the Nucks 14-8, the Nucks were more determined to keep their one game point streak strong and PK, perfect.
Brock takes the weakest possible tripping call that even with gravity-assist looked weak. What happened to playoff reffing?
What does matter is the next big toothy call.
Bulldog had been having issues clearing the puck all night. Neal is coming at him with that creepy, perfect false-toothed grin. Puck flips up into the air. Biega takes a swing at the errant puck and misses it.
His swing continues along the course of certain dental surgery. The stick smacks Neal in the mouth, flipping fake chiplets onto the ice.
It’s a 4 minute high-sticking call. It’s 4 minutes of OMG! Markstrom! moments! Save after save, good clear after good clear and the double minor is sent to the showers to wash off the game thread perspiration. The perspiration. The smell will linger for longer.
Later in the period, Roussel draws a holding call and Nucks power play have a chance to win the game!
Just kidding. The Flames PK is tied with the Nucks PK in the perfection stat.
3 on 3 with Pete could be a treat. And it almost is. But a simple dramatic OT win wouldn’t be dramatic enough. Besides, the un-rummy hockey gods like to see Westy squirm in the skillz section of the almost-hockey game thread.
The tie continues until...
SO: Pete Scores & Marky Turns Out The Lights
Oh...might have given away too much. But, it’s been too long since we enjoyed a high tension Nucks win. Yeah, I’m a little out of high tension shape.
Pete is the Nucks 1st shooter. SCORES!
Tchuckles is Flames first - STOPPED!
Brock - STOPPED!
Monahan - STOPPED!
Granny - STOPPED!
Neal - STOPPED!
Game - STOPPED! By Marky! We WIN!!!!!!!!!!
This is the best possible way to win. Other than in regulation.
Marky stopped 44 shots of 47. Stopped all the hot shot Calgary shooters in SO. He wins the game with his final stop. Sure, Petey scored, but he owed Marky that one from the windy city pass.
Markstrom is the game’s first star. He is playing lights out elite level. Keeps games close when the Nucks D is far away from being close to competent.
Since it’s HNIC, we won’t hear the Two Johns. Sorry.
A brilliant win ripped - painfully, from the jaws of certain defeat.
The never-quit Canucks never quit in this game.
No 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|
Let’s hear from the modest .936 SV% Marquis de Save.
Our favourite Alien praises the Marquis as well.
50 Points. 45 games. Pete is modestly making a radical rookie run himself.
With 2 assists in the @Canucks win Saturday, Elias Pettersson reached 50 points in just his 45th game. That has the 20-year old behind only 5 rookies on a list dating back 30 seasons pic.twitter.com/XdnKvVAATJ— StatsCentre (@StatsCentre) February 10, 2019
Finally. There’s a Green Room. With words and pictures. Good words and snickering sarcasm.
“In the 2nd - Let’s hem them in our zone and tire them out”
A great game by Marky brings a great result. A win over the BEST team in the WEST. Look out Floridian bay players, the 9th BEST in the WEST might tangle with you yet.
Who knows? Other than 83er and Kelly Hrudey. Kelly is picking the Nucks for the last seat at the late spring extra games table. He said it on HNIC. That makes it true.
We might not want to get too giddy with our one game home win streak. Look too far ahead and we’ll miss the Sharks circling our rink.
Perhaps the Nucks might be the Flames kryptonite, but SJ is ours. Keep your Shark repellent handy on Monday.
Have a supersnowfull Sunday and a monster shark-sushi Monday.