5 on 5 and Crease Crashing
The Canucks so far this season have relied on a powerplay that was top 3 in the league and they were making teams pay for taking penalties. As the red hot power play has cooled so have the Canucks winning ways and goal scoring. In games the Canucks haven’t had a chance to work the man advantage, they have struggled to find the back of the net because of their lack of aggression in getting the puck to the net.
Riding a hot powerplay, the Canucks 5 on 5 offense was non-existent and they weren’t aggressive. Time and time again we watched other teams crash the crease and as a result, good things happen. The Canucks looked to have finally learned that last night as their scoring woes were thrown out the window. The Canucks offense right now with out Daniel Sedin and the host of others injured is one dimensional and plays an overly defensive game. The Canucks conservative play has been their detriment on nights where one player doesn’t stand out and single handedly win the game.
Against the Avalanche the Canucks finally figured out for themselves that crashing the crease, going to the net, and not backing off is the key to victory. It seems whenever a goalie faces the Canucks they get hot. Or have an outstanding game trying to out duel Luongo. The Canucks key to victory is crashing the net. They don’t have to be dirty like some teams, but they’re a fast team that utilizes their speed to get back up ice and then fall short by not going into the crease. Henrik got two of his three goals by going to the net, Bernier was left wide open in front, and Hansen potted his in similar fashion.
The Canucks showed us a glimpse of the offense and the style of play that we’ve come to expect from a team which on paper is one of the best and well balanced teams in the league. With players finding their own while injuries run rampant, the Canucks have to find a way to win 5 on 5. The Canucks in their recent three game losing streak would get frustrated without the man advantage and it showed in their lack of goals. In the 3 game losing streak they managed to score just 3 goals. The Canucks, victims of a terrible schedule have a week between games and have lots of time to take what they did in Denver, and make sure they utilize that same play, mentality, and style of play to victimize the Avalanche in what stretches the definition of a “home and home”.