I have a bet with a friend of mine this year for who will be the worst team in the NHL this season. I chose Buffalo, he chose Carolina. I’m not feeling comfortable with that bet right now, but I’m always happy with a Canucks victory.
Final score: Canucks 4 – Hurricanes 1
- Brad Richardson (1) ASST: Zack Kassian (1), Shawn Matthias (1)
- PPG – Linden Vey (3) ASST: Radim Vrbata (6), Henrik Sedin (7)
- Jannik Hansen (3) ASST: Yannick Weber (1), Luca Sbisa (1)
- EN – Brad Richardson (2) ASST: Alexandre Burrows (4), Christopher Tanev (4)
- Jiri Tlusty (5) ASST: Eric Staal (2), Jeff Skinner (1)
Filling Omar’s shoes for the post-game SixPack is not easy. Luckily I have the support of so many adoring fans…
— Stephanie Pagani (@Pagnificent) October 29, 2014
1. Tank nation taking Hurricanes by storm
If you read Vancity Buzz’s coverage of the Canucks last season, I’m sure you’re well aware of the term “tank nation” by now. It’s a term coined to refer to hoping for your team fails in the hopes of improving your draft choice for the long term success of the franchise. Many Canucks fans supported “tank nation” last year, but that was only once logical hope dwindled in the last third of the season.
Just seven games in, Hurricanes fans are probably already hoping for a tank job in the hopes of landing superstar junior Connor McDavid in the draft. The Hurricanes (0-5-2) are the only team in the NHL without a victory this season and they looked full marks for it tonight. You would think that a team without a victory on three days rest that had just been spanked by a combined score of 11-3 in Alberta would come into Rogers Arena with fire in their bellies. They didn’t. They were soft and they looked like the worst team in the league.
They didn’t even react getting run into the boards by Daniel Sedin.
@RobTheHockeyGuy he said sorry. Not for the hit,but rather for the fact that Gleason plays for Carolina
— phil verret (@BasketballPhil) October 29, 2014
The Canucks for their part did just what they needed to do and cruised to victory.
2. New power play wrinkle
I really love the new wrinkle the Canucks have shown on the power play in recent games.
It involves two players behind the goal line (tonight it was Henrik Sedin and Radim Vrbata), playing catch. It seems to be wreaking havoc on opponents, leading to power play specialist Linden Vey’s power play goal tonight.
It gets the opposing goalie looking over his shoulder, all four penalty killers looking the wrong way, while neither defenceman wants to chase into the corner.
They ran the same play in St. Louis last week, also leading to a Linden Vey power play goal:
3. The Hamhuis-Bieksa adventure
Bieksa and Hamhuis getting killed tonight http://t.co/uaidSbkZ6L
— Taj (@taj1944) October 29, 2014
It was a real strange game for Dan Hamhuis and Kevin Bieksa. The Hurricanes controlled most of the play when they were on the ice, as evidence by their team-worst Corsi rating tonight. Hamhuis hasn’t been the same since being forced to put on a full visor after taking a stick in the face a week and a half ago in Edmonton. Kevin Bieksa hasn’t looked right all season, and you wonder if he is still playing hurt as well.
4. Attendance update
I predicted the most sparse crowd for a regular season game in Vancouver in over ten years for tonight’s game. So how many people turned out for the worst team in the NHL on a rainy Tuesday night?
18,234 announced attendance at #Canucks game. 400 shy of sellout. I'd guess building will be full for Habs on Thursday
— Jeff Paterson (@patersonjeff) October 29, 2014
That’s not bad. I was at the game tonight and it looked pretty full to me as well:
That didn’t mean the crowd was rowdy or anything though. Not that I blame them.
Although they did get a pretty decent wave going in the third period. But even that was met with some resistance…
— Zachary Adams (@zaktadams) October 29, 2014
5. 300 for Miller
— Mike S.™ (@Mike_Stefanuk) October 29, 2014
Ryan Miller didn’t have to make any 5 alarm saves tonight, but he looked in control all night. Against Carolina, that’s not saying much. Still, it should still feel good for Miller, who got his 300th career victory tonight.
Brad Richardson's 2nd (emptynetter) goal ices 4-1 #Canucks win—career win 300 for goalie Ryan Miller!! Canucks now 6 & 3.
— Raffi Cavoukian (@Raffi_RC) October 29, 2014
Man, how good would it've been if Miller got the shutout in his 300th win. Oh well – he still had to earn it. #Canucks
— omarcanuck (@omarcanuck) October 29, 2014
It would have been nice for Miller to put an exclamation point on tonight’s game and he probably would have if not for a couple of uncharacteristic giveaways from Daniel and Henrik Sedin on the same third period shift.
Sedins owe Miller dinner tonight #VCBCanucks
— Rob The Hockey Guy (@RobTheHockeyGuy) October 29, 2014
6. Tweet of the Game
Thanks for everyone who submitted an entry tonight using the hashtag #vcbCanucks on Twitter. The winner wins a $10 gift card at the Charles Bar.
But first the runners-up:
— Mikey Rakkar (@mikey_rakkar) October 29, 2014
Sbisa rolled over a Hurricane like he was flattening some dough, preparing a pizza… Or something. I’m running out of pizza metaphors for Sbisa.
Watching rain out the window from Hurricane Ana remnants more exciting than this team from Carolina #VCBCanucks
— Matt (@mwats05) October 29, 2014
Very topical, weatherman Matt.
And our winner:
— Aaron (@octobermidnight) October 29, 2014
I’m a sucker for a good Sportsnet dig.
Congratulations Aaron! Contact @omarcanuck for details on how to collect your prize.