Jan 222014
 

Sans Torts and sans Hank, the Canucks went into Edmonton last night and took on the Edmonton Oilers.

Despite not having their coach or their captain, the Canucks did okay. For starters, Kellan Lain played more than 2 seconds, and in fact, on his second shift if the game, scored his first career NHL goal. Roberto Luongo stopped 28 of 29 shots, and Zack Kassian scored the game-winner (and drove the Oilers players nuts all game). On the other hand, the Oilers offered little resistance, which, I suppose after a week like last week is a welcome change.

Read more #TGATT goodness past the jump.

Jan 162014
 

As far as spectacular losses go – and as we all know, the Canucks have had more than their fair share of spectacular losses – surely last night’s 9-1 ass-kicking by the Anaheim Ducks must rank among their most spectacular.


Read more #TGATT goodness past the jump.

Jan 142014
 
TGATT - The Game According to Twitter

To call last night’s 1-0 loss by the Canucks to the Los Angeles Kings a wild affair may be an understatement.

With Dustin Brown’s ninja kick to Roberto Luongo’s head still fresh in their minds, the Canucks went after him. First, Zack Kassian did just 9 seconds into the game. Then, Ryan Kesler dropped the gloves against 6 seconds into the second period.

As usual, Jordan Nolan was being a rat, charging at a Sedin again, like he did the last time these two teams met. On the very next shift, Tom Sestito had enough and took matters into his own hands. Nolan turtled, and the refs threw Testito out of the game.

Dale Weise slewfooted Drew Doughty. Kevin Bieksa tried to make life miserable for Jonathan Quick. Matt Greene tried to make him pay for it. There were scrums at practically every whistle, and by the end of it, the the two teams combined for 109 minutes.

And one goal. By Dustin Brown, of course, who scored 24 seconds into the third period. The only goal the Kings would need to beat the Canucks for the fourth time in four games this season.

Read more #TGATT goodness past the jump.

Jan 102014
 
7th in the Western Conference, our Canucks, take on 2nd in the conference the St.Louis Blues tonight at Rogers Arena.  (Photo Credit The Canadian Press)

7th in the Western Conference, our Canucks, take on 2nd in the conference the St.Louis Blues tonight at Rogers Arena.
(Photo Credit The Canadian Press)

It goes without saying that the Canucks are having a lacklustre start to 2014. They’ve lost 5 games in a row, blowing leads in all of them, and prompting coach John Tortorella to question his team’s mental toughness. They’ll need to get tough real fast as they take on the streaking St.Louis Blues at home at Rogers Arena before heading on the road for another 3-game jaunt through the Pacific Division. The Blues are 9-0-1 in their last 10 games, a span in which they’ve outscored their opponents 41-17.

Tonight will be the second meeting between the two teams. Their last meeting was back on October 25th in St. Louis, where, thanks to some stellar goaltending by Eddie Lack and an overtime goal from Ryan Kesler, the Canucks came away with the 2 points. Since that meeting, however, the Blues have gone 26-6-3 and have surpassed the Chicago Blackhawks for top spot in the Central Division and have come within 4 points of the Anaheim Ducks, with 3 games in hand, for top spot in the Western Conference.

It’ll be interesting to see how the Canucks come out tonight after a roller coaster of a game against the Pittsburgh Penguins on Tuesday. They gave up the first 2 goals of the game to the high-powered Pens, but then struck for 4 unanswered goals, including 3 in the third period, before surrendering 2 goals in 16 seconds with 71 seconds remaining on the clock, en route to a 5-4 shootout loss. They’ve had a couple of days to stew over the loss so we’ll see how they respond.

Who’s Hot

With Henrik Sedin obviously nursing an injury, Chris Higgins and Zack Kassian have stepped up to the plate, contributing a couple of points each in their last game. Kassian was particularly impressive, his goal and his assist on Higgins’ goal showcasing the mix of speed, size and hands that the Canucks coveted when they acquired him for Cody Hodgson.

Brian Elliot is expected to start since Jaroslav Halak played last night in the Blues’ win against the Calgary Flames. Elliot has won 7 consecutive starts with .926% SV and a 1.86 GAA. Team Canada defenseman, Alex Pietrangelo, has 7 points in 4 games.

Who’s Out

The Canucks are still without Roberto Luongo, Alex Burrows, Alex Edler, Jordan Schroeder, Ryan Stanton and Andrew Alberts. Burrows and Edler skated with the team yesterday, but neither is expected back tonight. Luongo should be back next week.

The Blues are missing leading scorer, Alex Steen, due to a concussion. Defenseman Roman Polak is also out with an ankle injury.

Jan 082014
 

Don’t get me wrong. I think it’s admirable that the Canucks fought back from a 2-goal deficit against the high-powered Pittsburgh Penguins. It’s likewise impressive that they scored 4 consecutive goals, the last 2 within a 17-second span in the third period to take a 2-goal lead of their own. What sucks is that they blew a lead late – again. They allowed the Pens to tie the game late – 2 goals in 16 seconds with a minute left in the third period to be precise – and proceeded to lose 5-4 in the shootout.

The Canucks have now lost 5 consecutive games. In 4 of those games, they carried a lead into the third period. In 3 of those games, they had the lead with less than 2 minutes left.

Read more #TGATT goodness past the jump.

Dec 242013
 

Santa has made his list. He’s checked it twice. Here’s which Canucks are naughty and which are nice! (See what I did there? I’m such a poet!)

Santa Loves Bobby Lu & Boothy

Santa Loves Bobby Lu & Boothy

Santa’s Nice List

David Booth. I think even Santa is stunned about this turnaround. David wasn’t exactly on the naughty list (well maybe with the reindeer who fear for their life). He was mostly not on any list. I’m not even sure Santa knew where he was what with the whole conditioning Utica drama. You can call it a Christmas miracle, but David Booth has cemented himself on the Nice list with his play of late. He’s skating fast and hard, he’s making smart plays and he’s scoring. Yes, scoring goals not more antlers for his mantle.

Roberto Luongo.  I half expected him to maybe not play that hard since he kind of acted like he was being forced to stay in Vancouver (and he was). But Lu put on his big boy pads and stepped up. Sure there was the standard October – as @strombone1 accurately labeled it ‘How did that go in?’ – but then Bobby Lu turned it around. As if that isn’t enough he beat the Boston Bruins. Santa hates the Bruins.

Eddie Lack. He beat the Hawks. We love when we beat the Hawks and Eddie did that for us – in a shootout no less. That’s enough to earn him a sweet spot on the Nice List.

Ryan Kesler. Kesler is doing well under Torts. He’s blocking shots, he’s taking shots, he’s scoring in a shootout, he’s fighting Iginla…yeah even Santa was confused by that but he’ll let it pass. Ryan won’t get coal this year.

Chris Tanev. He takes hits that would knock other players into next season and keeps on playing. Tanev’s a Goonie. He never says die. Santa likes Goonies.

Kassian and Edler are getting coal

Kassian and Edler are getting coal

Santa’s Naughty List

Alex Edler. The nicest thing Alex Edler has done for his team this season is get injured. We’ve done better without him that we did with him. Ever since last season, Edler has struggled. He’s made stupid mistakes and he’s been a little careless with his hits, drawing penalties or suspensions. Santa doesn’t take kindly to reckless plays or repeatedly giving the puck away. It’s coal for Alex.

Zach Kassian. He just isn’t living up to expectation this year. Sure the toothless grin is cute but Santa doesn’t like slackers. Zach needs to pick it up and contribute more if he wants more than coal next year.

Andrew Alberts. I think he peed in Rudolph’s water bowl… or in Torts’ cereal. Or in the Hockey Gods’ coffee. He did something wrong because Andrew Alberts isn’t playing good hockey… on the rare time when he gets to leave the press box or dungeon or wherever it is they keep him.

 

Dec 142013
 

Late in the third period with the Canucks leading by 3 goals and the game well out of hand, the Edmonton Oilers finally remembered that they wanted to exact some revenge on Zack Kassian for breaking Sam Gagner’s jaw back in September. (Well, they didn’t actually. David Perron had to remind them.) Anyway, a scrum ensued with the Kassquatch in the middle of things with Perron and Oilers enforcer, Luke Gazdic.

As with every other scrum, much talking and taunting were involved. But Kassian drew some heat for apparently taunting Gagner’s injury, and have pointed to video evidence as proof of his douchiness.

Now, is it just me or did it seem that Kassian was taunting Gazdic, not Gagner? I mean, Kass was looking at Gazdic when he said whatever he said and made the motion with his hands by his neck. And it seems a stretch to suggest that Kass was directing this to Gagner, who at the time wasn’t part of the scrum, sitting on the bench behind a bunch of Oilers on the ice. Like, was all this fury after the game because Kassian was making fun of Gazdic’s neck beard?

I dunno. You be the judge.

Dec 142013
 

With his preseason high-stick on Sam Gagner still fresh in mind, Zack Kassian entered last night’s match-up between the Vancouver Canucks and the Edmonton Oilers as public enemy number one. Threats of retribution followed immediately after that incident back in September, and for his part, Kass was ready regardless of whatever the Oilers threw his way.

Except the Oilers didn’t throw much of anything the Canucks’ way last night. The Canucks were as dominant as the Oilers were soft. Roberto Luongo recorded his 3rd shutout of the season, Jason Garrison had 3 assists, and hell, Dale Weise scored a powerplay goal. And Kass? He scored a goal to give the Canucks some breathing room just 2 minutes into the third period, and had irritated the crap out of the Oilers by the end of the night.

Read more #TGATT goodness past the jump.

Nov 262013
 

After outplaying the Los Angeles Kings for much of the game and carrying a lead late into the third period, the Vancouver Canucks, thanks to a couple of miscues, dropped a 3-2 decision in overtime. It was perhaps one of the best games they’ve played in this homestand but it wasn’t enough. Instead, they ended their 6-game homestand with 5 losses, and since dominating the Toronto Maple Leafs on Pavel Bure night, have now lost 8 of their last 10 games.

Yes it does.

Read more #TGATT goodness past the jump.

Nov 242013
 
Photo credit: Reuters

Photo credit: Reuters

One night after handily defeating the Columbus Blue Jackets 6-2, the Vancouver Canucks were seemingly in control of their matchup vs. the Chicago Blackhawks last night.  The game was a fast-paced affair and while both sides traded decent chances, Roberto Luongo was extremely sharp.

Then, in the blink of eye, the Blackhawks potted two quick third-period goals and the Canucks fell into a hole from which they couldn’t climb out of.

The time between the two goals?  Nine seconds.

It was shocking, disappointing, and disheartening.  Despite a valiant effort for the rest of the game, the Canucks couldn’t solve Corey Crawford and lost by a familiar 2-1 score.

I’ve compiled some other things that can happen quickly in this new CHB Top 10:  The Top 10 Things You Can Accomplish in 9 Seconds:

10: Compose a tweet asking for submissions to the CHB Top 10.

9: “The Blackhawks can almost win two Stanley Cups!” – submitted by @puckjim

8:  “Win a hockey game…if you’re Chicago.” – submitted by @MitchEmDee

7: Finish 69.2% of your first shift with the Canucks…if you’re Mats Sundin (his first-ever shift with the team was 13 seconds long).

6: “Draw a straight line. Oh wait, does erasing count for 2 seconds?”  – submitted by @elmeebaterina

5: Set the world record for the 100 metre race.

4: “Have me play a better shift than Zack Kassian… and I can’t skate.” – submitted by @jasonclowers24

3: “Listen to Jonathan Toews without falling asleep.” – submitted by @wronsweeney

2: Complete one speed stacking cycle – if you’re Jacob Imoo (see video below).

1:  “Make a baby (brown chicken brown cow).” – submitted by @geoff_heith

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