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RECAP: NUCKS Win! Chance To Lose 4-2 in the CoTU

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You want to know how much we miss Marky? Me neither

Vancouver Canucks v Toronto Maple Leafs
Quinn breaking sticks instead of shins
Photo by Claus Andersen/Getty Images

After the worst loss on this entire road trip in Ottawa, the Nucks were hoping for a better fate in CoTU.

Hopes quashed.

Playoff hopes could be the next casualty. [Cue evil Westy laugh]

The good news is... the last game of February is over.

The bad news is... the first game of March is tomorrow. On the road. In Ohio. Wherever that it is. Pretty close to Point Roberts is what I’ve heard.

The team played must better defensively than against the 29th team in the league. But Demko did not.

He was suspect on the first goal. Terrible on the 2nd and unlucky on the winning goal. Unlucky, because he wasn’t ready to stop the initial shot, less ready to stop the shot from the rebound off the post.

It’s tough being a backup thrust into the starter’s role during the stretch. Especially when you have to replace Marky who stole games for us. Now looks like Demmer is letting them slip away.

Not that we’re ready to panic. Have to save something for tomorrow.

1st Period

If the Nucks have learned their lesson about the importance of getting the 1st goal of the game, they’re not saying.

Instead, Demko isn’t tracking the puck or the play and the shot from blueline goes under Demmer’s arm. Maybe he was screened. Maybe he was thinking about cheating a bit. To be fair, the Fantenberg/Myers pairing could have got assists on the play.

Whatever. Nucks are down 1-0 in the CoTU. The Most Important Hockey Arena in the Universe is celebrating.

The least attended game thread in months is... not.

OH FFS!!!

Now it begins. All over again. Give up first goal — jimmi

The game thread, or me, is now ready for the 2nd Laffs goal. Ready is too optimistic a word. Before the game thread, or me, could find the right sort of dreaded word, the Nucks 4th line silences the always-sold-out crowd.

Hard forecheck, leaving defenders behind the net, pass out front from Beags to Sutz and over to Motte. 1st Nucks shot of the game goes in!

It’s 1-1 and the Nucks could win this on their 2nd shot of the game. That’s what the game thread, or me, were thinking.

Instead... it’s the worst sort of bad angle goal from the worst teenage moustache on ice. This was a McSoftie with whipped cream on top. And air on the bottom.

It’s one of those must-have type of saves this time of year. Demmer didn’t have it and the game thread, or me, noted the stench of fecalness on the play.

oh crap

Teenage stache beats Demmer — jimmi

To be fair, it was another casual Thursday on Saturday play by Myers on Matthews. Could have checked him, but chose to wave his stick in meek protest.

The CoTU is leaping around so much, the universe might be off balance for days.

Just when we, or just me, were thinking what a long night this could be, turns out the CoTU have defence that can lose puck battles too.

Bo’s line takes advantage and Pearson knocks the rebound past Andersen.

Wooo!!! We’re winning. A tie.

Not just our (semi)rookie goalie and weak D having issues - 4 goals were scored on 7 shots.

This could be looking like a winnable game for the Nucks. The Laffs aren’t a defensive juggernaut despite what HNIC claims.

Tanev takes a late penalty and the game thread, or me, gets all wrinkled-worry-face again.

But, no worries. Where Demmer wasn’t sharp, the PK gets his full attention. Makes a couple big saves and the freshly invincible Nucks PK does the rest.

Shots were evenish 9-7 for the Most Important Team in the building. And yet the game is tied 2-2. That’s not so bad.

2nd Period

And even better... Demmer does’t let in a single (or multiple) goal in the entire period.

And not better, neither does Andersen.

Pete finally draws a call and the Nucks PP gets a chance to win the game.

The chance is spent on not getting the game-winning goal.

So the the game resumes the normal 5-on-5 play and the Pete keeps getting beat up.

With the game thread joining the game thread the observations are fast and disheartening.

Petey taking a lot of abuse today — Westy

and not just

from the game thread — jimmi

I asked him to play better

the Leafs want to push him into the ice — Westy

The Most Loved Team in the CoTU gets its make-up call and the Nucks PK extends its invincibility.

Then late in the second with seconds to go the Nucks are pressing. Jake whips a wrister past Andersen. Yay!

And hits the post. And out. Crap.

Shots are 10-7 CoTU and game is still tied. Through the intermission.

3rd Period

And then it happens again. 18 seconds in and another weak goal. This time from a CoTU defender who only has 4 goals through 229 games. Puts a shoot on net that beats Demmer and rebounds off the post right back to the hottest non-shooter in hockey who puts the shot past the badly out of position Demko.

The game thread is updating the NM rulebook as we watch our stomachs turn.

New Rule

Demko can’t play the first 5 minutes of the first or third period — Westy

Some will say it was a lucky bounce. Which it was. But it’s bad luck for the Nucks. Game is lost and we have to endure another 19 minutes and 20 seconds of HNIC telling us so.

The Nucks push back and get some chances, but our puck luck is already on the plane to Ohio. Wherever that is. At least I hope it is.

Pete gets a grade A chance from the slot... but whiffs on it and falls down.

As the game continues, the game thread offers stats to cheer us up.

Dec 17, 2011

The last time the Canucks won in Toronto — Westy

To be fair, that was around the last time the Nucks won in Montreal. Until last week. But on this night of Homer Night in Canada, we’re still visiting the stinging stats museum.

Canucks

have one win on Feb 29th in their history…stupid schedule makers — Westy

And then, Capt’n Bo breaks in and scores. Almost. Sort of.

Captain Bo?

Please score. — Westy

He doesn’t take requests on Saturdays. Sorry.

As the last half of period fades, the Nucks 1st line is buzzing and putting on pressure. Lots of pressure. But no goals.

Finally Green pulls Demmer... some thought a couple periods too late... and the Nucks have the extra skater and the pressure is building. HNIC is worried.

And then they’re not. The CoTU have their own EN specialists.

Game thread finishes our thoughts, even if the Nucks can’t finish their chances.

Sigh. If only we employed some empty net specialists.

The other kind. — radivel

Our Nucks lose another precious 2 points on the road trip. Despite outshooting the leafy winners 13-11 in the period, the Nucks extend their L-streak. Ugh.

Want to relive the HNIC horror all over again? Me neither.

GAME STATS (What Might Have Been)

SOG FO% PP PIM HITS BLKS GVA
Canucks
VAN
27 46% 0/2 8 20 15 10
Maple Leafs
TOR
30 54% 0/4 4 10 20 17


PLAYER STATS (Who Might Have Been)

# Forwards GP G A P P +/- S PIM PIM SOG HITS BLKS GVA TKA FO% TOI PP TOI SH TOI PP GW
9 J.T. Miller 0 0 0 0 -1 2 0 2 1 1 0 1 67 20:44 3:14 0:12 0
18 J. Virtanen 0 0 0 0 0 2 0 2 1 0 1 1 13:28 0:06 0:43 0
20 B. Sutter 0 1 1 1 -1 2 0 2 2 0 0 0 25 13:30 --:-- 3:27 0
21 L. Eriksson 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 1 1 0 2 0 11:53 --:-- 2:05 0
26 A. Roussel 0 0 0 0 0 3 0 3 1 1 0 0 0 9:07 0:54 --:-- 0
40 E. Pettersson 0 0 0 0 -1 0 0 0 1 1 0 1 0 21:04 3:27 --:-- 0
53 B. Horvat 0 1 1 1 -1 2 0 2 1 1 0 1 43 18:14 2:34 --:-- 0
64 T. Motte 1 0 1 1 -1 2 0 2 2 2 1 1 14:44 0:05 3:21 0
70 T. Pearson 1 0 1 1 0 3 0 3 0 0 1 1 15:15 0:40 --:-- 0
73 T. Toffoli 0 0 0 0 -1 0 2 0 2 0 1 0 18:11 2:48 --:-- 0
83 J. Beagle 0 1 1 1 0 1 0 1 1 1 0 0 53 10:08 --:-- 3:08 0
88 A. Gaudette 0 0 0 0 -1 1 2 1 0 0 0 0 43 11:16 0:19 --:-- 0
# Defense GP G A P P +/- S PIM PIM SOG HITS BLKS GVA TKA FO% TOI PP TOI SH TOI PP GW
5 O. Fantenberg 0 0 0 0 -1 0 0 0 3 0 0 0 12:30 0:05 1:10 0
8 C. Tanev 0 0 0 0 -1 1 2 1 0 0 0 0 17:32 --:-- 3:13 0
23 A. Edler 0 1 1 1 1 2 2 2 1 1 0 1 21:35 --:-- 4:14 0
43 Q. Hughes 0 0 0 0 -2 1 0 1 0 2 1 0 25:44 3:19 0:12 0
51 T. Stecher 0 0 0 0 1 2 0 2 0 1 0 0 16:20 --:-- 0:07 0
57 T. Myers 0 0 0 0 -2 2 0 2 3 4 1 1 23:04 0:14 4:00 0
# Goalies GP REC GA SV SA S EV PP SH SAVE-SHOTS SV% PIM TOI GAA
35 T. Demko -- 26 29 18–21 8–8 0–0 26–29 .897 0 58:46


How bad was this loss? On the team psyche?

At the end of the game J.T. Miller and Antoine Roussel were seen chirping each other. Generally it’s better if your feisty players chirp opponents not teammates.

Sure hope this isn’t the end of the ‘great chemistry’ that JB didn’t want to upset at the TDL.

As the road losses mount, who can keep the scrum at bay? Capt’n Bo.

Since the the CoTU is spacious, if nothing else, can amply accommodate the Green Room. Trav plays a good road presser.

All hope is not lost. There’s still a chance for a 500 road trip. Trav likes our chances. Does he mean our chances? Or something else? Tricky.

The big gap between the pads is who starts the next game, the 2nd of this cruel B-2-B?

At least we won’t have to wait long. It’s back to Sunday afternoon hockey. This time the Nucks and their TBD starter visit Aye Carumbus, Ohio. Which is close to Point Roberts. Wherever that is.

Enjoy what little bit of February we have left, where the Nucks won 6 of 13 games. Which is close to 500. On the not-so-good side. Tomorrow, we MUST WIN.