Welcome back! Also... wow! What a weird game in Edmonton. Not so weird for Nucks fans... but pretty weird to see the Oil playing in Edmonton. That didn’t happen since... uh... the play-in round last year.
Sure, it’s a cheap shot at the tOilers, but have to get them in - we only play them 10 times in a 56 game season. 10 times?!!
I know... it’s insane. But welcome to the new crazy looking NHL where the Northern division is actually in the north. And it’s all Canadian teams playing other Canadian teams all season! I’m not making it up. The NHL did.
Anyhow, since this we have to play McJ and DrySaddle and the ragtag team of low cap-hitters 10 times this short season, let’s just move onto the part where the Nucks spoiled McD’s big birthday bash. In style. If not in substance.
Despite the cautionary warnings from Westy to steel our untamed expectations, the NM game threaders were typing. Typing to win.
The game started without the usual homer cheers from under the tarps.
Some back and forth hockey ensued and even better no homer goals. However, the wily woad wabbit Nucks used some confusing tactics early. And often.
Everyone must ice the puck.
Nucks: are you testing some theory that if you ice the puck continuously, good things will somehow happen? — radivel
Maybe the sneaky strategy was to wear out the ref’s whistle and arm early.
The refs got the secret hidden message and called an Oil penalty. And the Nucks PP went to work. Right where they left off last season. The early part where they didn’t score any goals.
Boeser going for the sedin pp
you know, one too many passes… — Twitchy
As imperfect as the Nucks first PP of this highly competitive, no-nights-off compressed season was, the Nucks PK was perfect. Robbed McD. Robbed them all. The Oil had the best PP in the NHL last regular season. This is a new season.
Anyhow, 5 on 5 play was allowed to continue and secrets started to be revealed.
The secret to playing a solid road game is to get the first goal. Everyone knows that. Especially Capt’n Bo.
With 5 to go in the period and everything to play for. So far. Bo takes a sweet pass from Pearson and skates in and scores like he’s done this before. Woooooooo!!!
Full replay of Horvat's goal - his first of how many this season? pic.twitter.com/NnzGJlgPnI— Vancouver #Canucks (@Canucks) January 14, 2021
1st goal of this long and arduous 15 minute stretch of the season. Bo is the leading goal scorer on the Nucks and we haven’t even finished the 1st!
It’s a 1-0 Nucks lead. In the 1st. On the road! Yay!
Road rusty Nucks outshoot the well-costumed hosts 8-7.
what are the Oilers wearing?
looks like a Flames alternate. — Nate
Game thread is jubilant. And brimming with confidence.
End the season now!
1-0 after the 1st — Westy
STOP THE COUNT! — Nate
Despite the pleading and entreaties from the game thread, the hard-nosed NHL let the game, the season continue.
And that was a good thing.
Just not yet.
Because... yup McD scores to tie it up. Except he didn’t. Someone making 1/10 of his fee does.
Game thread is not happy about the play. As if they are ever happy about a goal against. So predictable...
Not going to blame Juolivi for getting all spun out of shape - that’s Green’s job. And he ain’t worried...
Juolevi got picked — Westy
It’s a 1-1 tie. But that doesn’t matter either.
Because we have a new Swede sensation on the Bo-liner. And he’s sailing into the perfect spot for his 1st NHL goal. In his 1st NHL game.
the whole line gets congrats on that one
all three of them did great — radivel
Statistics don’t lie.
Höglander is averaging a goal a game in his NHL career. Just sayin'. pic.twitter.com/pSzsayzIC4— Vancouver #Canucks (@Canucks) January 14, 2021
But datasets... well...
What matters is that the Nucks and their newest phenom have restored the safest lead in hockey.
Also on matters of records... Hamonic was ringing some records. Records that we felt only Eddie could keep. Took 2 penalties in one period.
Game thread wasn’t worried.
Not sure I’m prepared for an entire season of Hamonic taking a penalty every period. Didn’t anyone tell him that Edler has first dibs on the TSP as the eldest Swede on the team? — splnwezel
Still... the perfect Nucks PK kept the imperfect Oil PP in the 0 for 2 zone. That’s a very nice zone. Also... to be fair... Half the HNIC team of well dressed and partially groomed experts felt that Hamonic’s little hookment of the Anointed One deserved a penalty shot rather than a penalty.
Game thread wasn’t thrilled...
Can we talk about
How that was NOT a penalty shot…especially if it was anyone else not named McDavid? — Chicky
The matter is the Nucks have the lead, the perfect road PK and Nils has his first NHL goal in his first NHL game.
We could stop here with the Nucks outshooting the Oil 17-14. But we won’t.
With the safest lead in hockey safely restored the Nucks get on the board again. Just not yet.
The safest lead in hockey turns dangerous less than 10 seconds in. Ugh.
It’s a tie! 2-2. For the Homers. Ugh.
The ever analytic game thread observes and reports...
This is a suboptimal period start. — radivel
In the pre-game thread, Westy stated which Canuck player would be under his watchful 3rd eye while playing on the 3rd line. Gaud help us all.
And he did. Not only was Gaudette ferocious on the back check he was ferocious on the rolling puck that was launched by the hands of Gaud into the preordained net of joy. Or so I heard.
Gaudy display. Sure, but we like those.
And once again, for what seemed like the 3rd time, the safest lead in hockey is restored.
Or is it?
Why take the chance. The Nucks keep pressing. And just when it seemed like they would get kicked out of the zone by the swooping DrySaddle, Quinn sets up Brock for the Brocket goal. Wow!
That pass from Hughes
while he was down on his back….that was sick. What a vision, this kid has! 5 people fighting for the puck, and he just flicks it with his wrist, to Brock, who is sitting alone by the goalie, a mile away. — Atti
This insurance marker was called in to pay up as the Oils got another goal. WTH?! They are not scheduled for the comeback kids segment until it’s too late to come back.
One thing to note in this game... Pete isn’t on the scoresheet. That ain’t right. All night Pete competes. Even out dekes McD on a few plays. So, you know what happens next....
Quinn feeds Pete who feeds a bank pass to booking-it Brock who blasts a laser into the net.
Twice over — Chicky
It’s official. Brock is the Nucks leading goal scorer. And so soon too.
Wooo!!! Nucks have an insurmountable 2 goal lead!
Sure, Eddie takes a late penalty, but the Nucks PK covers his outstanding sinbin debt.
Even better, while the Oil are toiling with an extra tOiler on the ice, they get a penalty. The game ends as it began, with the Nucks getting a PP. A power play that wasn’t required on the night. Thankfully. Next game we want some scintillating Nucks PP goals.
Nucks WIN! First game of the Year! Down the Oil 5-3.
Let’s watch the recap, possibly even called by Canadians in the Canadian Divi.
GAME STATS (They’re Back! And they’re glorious!)
PLAYER STATS (They’re Back! And Brockier than ever before!)
|#||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|
How important was this win? Vital. How important is the next one in 24 hours? Just as vital... but we’re not there yet.
Let’s just enjoy a good start with the good guys on the good shifts Canucks.
Green in the post game no-contact presser said: “Really happy with our game... Nice win.” He said he thought Nils played good as well. That’s some big praise right there.
What did we learn about our new cap-crunched Canucks?
They have won all the games they have played this season. Can’t ask for more than that.
Until tomorrow, which feels like it’s already today.
The Nucks are on the road again with a B-2-B in, of course, Edmonton. Can they keep their freshly hot streak going? We’ll find out soon. Maybe too soon.
We’ve missed hockey for months, and now it’s hockey all the time. Just how we like it.
Have a wonderful tomorrow today.