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Wake With Elias- December 4, 2021: Hamonic Back To Abby

The Canucks are back from that five game road trip, but Travis Hamonic is headed back to Abbotsford.

Colorado Avalanche v Vancouver Canucks

It was a strange one yesterday as the Canucks made a couple roster moves in preparation of their six game home stand beginning tonight against the Pittsburgh Penguins.

This is likely due to Hamonic not getting a lot of game time in while the Canucks were on the road, thanks to a light schedule for the AHL Canucks. And with the team having won two straight, they’re not likely to want to mess with chemistry right now.

And while I get the desire for that, it does raise questions (yet again) about defensive depth on this team, especially on the right side. How bad are things, when there’s a genuine concern about having to take Luke Schenn out of the lineup? Or that the latest in what appears to be a colossal screwup signing by Jim Benning, Tucker Poolman, is someone who should be a healthy scratch? That contract is looking Loui Eriksson bad right about now.

There are some good things happening though, one of them being the emergence of Vasily Podkolzin. He’s been an absolute workhorse night in and night out, and it’s paid off in a promotion to the top six.

It says a lot about their depth at center that the Canucks have Elias Pettersson on the third line, and while I would rather see Tyler Motte on that line at left wing, they need him to give that fourth line some drive. Hopefully, EP40 and Nils Hoglander can feed off each other and get back in gear, giving the Canucks three lines that can score.

CANUCKS NEWS

While he may not currently be considered a front runner, the re-emergence of Quinn Hughes: Elite Defenceman is not something you should sleep on...

PJ with a great piece on Conor Garland using his skating ability to overcome his height-related challenges in the NHL...

Let’s take a look at last night’s action around the NHL:

An early PPG from Ryan Strome would be all the New York Rangers would need in a 1-0 win over the San Jose Sharks, but it was a costly one, as they lost G Igor Shesterkin to injury.

Mark Scheifele had a hat trick, and the Jets got a pair from Nik Ehlers en route to an 8-4 win over the New Jersey Devils in Winnipeg last night.

Max Pacioretty scored twice as the Vegas Golden Knights added the latest chapter to a season of humiliation for the Arizona Coyotes in a 7-1 thrashing.

Adam Larsson scored against his former squad as the Seattle Kraken took down the Edmonton Oilers 4-3 at Climate Pledge Arena in Seattle. Leon Draisaitl scored his league leading 21st of the season in the loss.

The Calgary Flames needed to go to Uncle Gary’s Super Fun Trick Shot Contest to get another road win, this time coming out on top 4-3 over the Anaheim Ducks.

AROUND THE NHL

Jack Eichel has resumed skating and will soon be cleared for contact as he continues his rehab from neck surgery. While there’s not currently a timeline for Eichel to make his Vegas debut, it’s being speculated it could be as early as the last week of December. All of this just continues to make the way the Buffalo Sabres handled what should have been the player they built a contender around even worse than before, which doesn’t seem possible.

The Anaheim Ducks will be without Ryan Getzlaf for a little while. Injured in Tuesday’s game against LA, Getzlaf is listed as week to week with a lower body injury. Getzlaf is currently second in team scoring with twenty points.

Brendan Gallagher and Sami Niku are the latest NHL’ers to be placed in COVID-19 protocol. The Montreal Canadiens players will be unavailable for at least 10 days. The Habs will also be without F Josh Anderson for 2-4 weeks with an upper body injury.