You’ll notice that the title of this blog entry does not end with a question mark. That’s because I know what went wrong in game 3 for the Canucks. Here’s what it was:
With a 3-2 win in game 1, the Canucks are 7 wins away from their first Stanley Cup, but surprisingly it’s not all positive news the day after. There are more than a few misconceptions that are spewing from the mass media today. Maybe it’s because there’s a two day break, maybe it’s cause they’re bored. Maybe it’s something else.
With their thrilling 3-2 game 7 victory over the Detroit Red Wings, the San Jose Sharks avoided a collapse of epic proportions and booked a ticket to Vancouver for the Western Conference final. Sharks… Canucks… Get excited Vancouver!
We’re now two games into the Predators-Canucks series and it’s become clear that goal scoring will be at a premium. Both teams have combined to score 2 goals each in 8 periods of hockey. A series for the ages? Not likely… So where has all the goal scoring gone? Well, in game 1 it was the Nashville Predators who failed to show up and rode the coattails of Pekka Rinne to keep them in the game. In game 2, it was the Canucks’ turn to fail to show up through 60 minutes, putting up a pathetic 15 shots on goal. Meanwhile, Roberto Luongo stood on his head for 59 minutes, before letting in a stinker from behind the net.
One of the great things about this year’s Canucks has been the way the players have absorbed each other’s best qualities. Malhotra’s faceoff skill, Ballard’s hip checks, Sedin body positioning, and Bieksa’s tenacious yet positionally sound defence have been picked up by the entire team. The stud in the shared skills stable though is certainly Kesler’s sizzling every-inch-matters brand of intense puck pursuit. Even twinkle toed Mason Raymond has turned into a fore checking menace!
As the second round begins Thursday evening, here’s a few quick hits on what to watch for as the Canucks try to move on to the third round for the first time since 1994…
I’ve been to two game sevens now. My record stands at .500, but both times, a flair for the dramatic has kept Canucks fans’ hearts pumping non-stop, clammy hands clenched, and knees and feet shaking uncontrollably. My first game seven was in 2004, when the Canucks played the Flames (the game where Matt Cooke scored shorthanded with five seconds left, only to have the Flames respond on the same PP in OT), but that will have to wait for another time. My second, was tonight.
Well, did anyone see that coming? After spanking the Canucks 7-2 in game 4, they followed that up with another beat down in game 5. So here we are, nervous, panicking. Is it justified? Absolutely yes. Chicago has all of the momentum and Vancouver will need to turn it around.
It took the Blackhawks losing on the final day of the regular season as well as the Dallas Stars choking versus the Minnesota Wild, but here we have it, Canucks versus Blackhawks for the third year in a row. Like most Canucks fans, I was cheering for the Dallas Stars to win their final game, [...]
As you’ve no doubt heard by now, the Vancouver Canucks have locked up the President’s Trophy as the NHL’s top team in the regular season. We know this because they absolutely took the night off in their first meaningless game against the Edmonton Oilers on Saturday night! But I digress. They’re the top dogs, which means we know that they will play whichever team ends up in 8th place in the conference. In case you haven’t seen the NHL standings in a while, here they are:
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