The Canucks head into Calgary after stomping all over the Oilers at home (just like the good old days) and giving fans a whole lot of optimism after a mini panic set-in across Canuck nation on Thursday.
The high flying/high scoring Canucks were back for one night at least, beating the Oilers 6-2 at home on Saturday night. They outshot the Oilers badly (43-23) and the Canucks’ best players were dominant. Edmonton out-hit (38-22) and blocked more shots (19-10), mostly because the Canucks had the puck all night.
After a less than impressive season opener, the Canucks will try to get off on the right foot at home on Saturday night against the upstart Edmonton Oilers. Alex Burrows was seen limping after blocking a shot on Thursday. Burrows didn’t practice on Friday but is expected to play (UPDATE: Burrows is injured for a few weeks).
The Canucks lost 4-1 to San Jose on Thursday. They were outshot and outplayed. Roberto Luongo looked sharp, despite giving up 4 goals. Their power play and penalty kill also impressed. John Tortorella played the bejesus out of his top two lines, who probably tired a bit down the stretch because of it.
Every Friday on RobTheHockeyGuy we welcome back Vancouver’s most beloved former Team 1040 on-air radio personality Paul DeBron to share his Top 6 list. Follow DeBron on Twitter at @MiltSeagull.
Welcome back to another thrilling edition of the Top 6. Sorry there wasn’t one last week (or sorry it’s back THIS week). As most of you heard I moved overseas. Nanaimo! Our movers sucked. Here’s a half ass Top 6 BEFORE the Top 6. Top 6 ways our movers sucked:
- They were an hour late getting to our place
- They asked my wife (smaller side of average size) to help load the truck to save time and money
- Even though time was a factor, they both had enough of it to take leisurely dumps. Like 20 minutes. Like A WHOLE ROLL OF TOILET PAPER BETWEEN TWO GUYS. Look, when you’ve gotta go, you’ve gotta go. I get that. But even I don’t sit there til my feet fall asleep EVERY time I go.
- They missed TWO ferries. The one they SAID they’d be on AND the one after that.
- They asked ME to unload so they could make the last ferry OFF the island. I’m not kidding: I unloaded at least TWICE what these kitten weak slowpokes did.
- You guessed it: They broke a LOT of our stuff.
The Vancouver Canucks begin the 2013-14 season today and I can’t recall another Canucks season with so many question marks. Nobody really knows what to expect from this group, now three seasons removed from their near-dream season in 2010-11 when they almost won the Stanley Cup.
Please welcome our newest writer Matt Fisher! You can follow Matt on Twitter at @vancouvermatt
While the goaltending soap opera surrounding the Vancouver Canucks received the lion’s share of the press during the off-season, it’s fair to say the Canucks’ fortunes in 2013-14 rest less on Roberto Luongo’s shoulders, than on their second-line centre, Ryan Kesler.
The oft-injured Selke trophy winner from Livonia, Michigan, is the real key to whether the Canucks will raise a banner at the end of the 2013-14 season – and whether that banner is a divisional one or better.
Without a healthy Kesler doing what he’s capable of doing – and that would be shutting down the opponent’s top line each night, while contributing a goal every second game like he did in 2010-11 – the Canucks’ chances of even making it into the playoffs are fair-to-middling at best.
Critics of Kesler are quick to dismiss his career year of 2010-11, when he racked up an astonishing 41 goals and 73 points in the regular season, only to ramp it up in the playoffs, netting 19 points in 25 games. He also single-handedly carried the team on his back in the Nashville series, and was on a short-list to win the Conn Smythe until injuring his hip against San Jose in the Conference Finals. We all know what happened after that… although some of us would prefer to forget.
The Vancouver Canucks will begin their 2013-14 season on the road in San Jose, the same place their season ended last season. There are more questions than answers as the Canucks enter this season and getting a good start to the season this year is of particular importance.
The Bo Horvat-Hunter Shinkaruk era has come to an end 9 games faster than anyone expected.
Bo Horvat and Hunter Shinkaruk were sent back to Junior yesterday and today respectively. The Canucks picked up Jeremy Welsh and Zac Dalpe in trade from the Carolina Hurricanes as well as claiming Ryan Stanton off the waiver wire from the Chicago Blackhawks. The writing was on the wall for Horvat and Shinkaruk as the Canucks had to get down to 23 players by today. While many fans were itching to see Horvat and Shinkaruk at least short-term in Canucks’ colours, the Canucks made the right call on this one as neither player was ready to make the big leap.
So who are these new Canucks?
I’m pleased to introduce our resident sports gambling writer: Capper Dan. I have known Dan for a long time and he will gamble on just about anything. He is also a massive Canucks fan and a voice of authority on the subject of sports gambling. Enjoy!
The NHL season is fast approaching and for gamblers like me, it not only marks the beginning of another hopeful deep Canucks run but also means something else besides football and baseball that I can bet on.
I am one of those gamblers that bets with my heart and not my head. This is one reason why I try to have no allegiance to any MLB, NBA or NFL teams (except maybe Steve Nash teams and now the Seahawks, but I digress). The team I like is the team that is making me money (maybe that’s why I like the Seahawks so much, they have been cashing in huge lately). When it comes to NHL though, I stick with my local team which happens to be the Canucks. Come good times or bad, I’m betting with them.
Steve Lancashire is back again. Follow Steve on Twitter at @lankey22
Now that the last cuts have been made, it appears we are seeing the lineup that will start the year together on October 3rd at the SAP Center in San Jose (SAP stands for Shitty Arena Pseudonym, by the way). While there is some familiarity, it looks like we are mostly heading into uncharted territory. Either way, I wager GM Mike Gillis envisioned a different roster at the beginning of training camp. Even though we are still a few days away from opening night, I’m going to analyze the lines as they stand, and watch as John Tortorella gradually changes them rendering this entire blog moot.
The Canucks have made their final cuts and there were some surprises. Both 18 year old first round draft picks, Hunter Shinkaruk and Bo Horvat, will start the season in the NHL this year. Meanwhile, Frank Corrado has been assigned to the Utica Comets of the AHL and Brendan Gaunce is on his way back to junior in Belleville.
As expected after Zack Kassian’s 5 game suspension, Hunter Shinkaruk will start with the Canucks. Shinkaruk didn’t look too out of place during the preseason and had 2 goals and 1 assist in six preseason games. When Zack Kassian returns, Shinkaruk will no longer be a top 9 forward and is likely destined to return to junior. I think it’s debatable that he’s a top 9 forward even without Kassian.
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