Canucks SixPack: Gretzky came to watch the team lose?

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A large number of Canucks fans were happy with what the team did against the Islanders Tuesday.

Which is a big improvement on how they felt after the trade deadline.

Vancouver lost 3-2, but after a first period that had less action than Jim Benning’s phone Monday, the game became fun.

By the end of it, the Canucks outshot the Islanders 33-24 and they held the edge in corsi 48-43 (ES).

TeamTank won, the game was interesting, and the youngsters played a lot (Hutton led the team with 25 minutes of ice time).

One question: if Vancouver does get that top-5 draft pick, is this the right management group to surround that player with the pieces to be a contender?

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1. Stalled ticket drive

After doing nothing to improve the team Monday, giving fans no hope besides what they already had, you couldn’t blame the customers for not forking up.

Still, this is only the start.

Didn’t we used to laugh at Florida for having ticket deals with prices like these?

Guess it doesn’t include a hot dog. Yet.

The prices will keep dropping, the jokes will keep getting better, and this could get ugly.

 

2. And the fans at home?

Sure, paying the face value on the tickets is asking a bit much. What about the fans at home – how are they feeling?

Ouch.

No chance.

 

3. Oh yeah, the game…

I’m getting off track. Some stuff did actually happen during the game.

There was Willie.

Great stuff here, but things have changed.

It appears Linden Vey’s become the object of Willie’s affection. Through two periods, Vey led all forwards in ice time, and he finished the game behind only the Sedins and Horvat.

Oh, and Markstrom did this.

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One more thing – the Granlund, Virtanen, Baertschi line was Vancouver’s most potent in terms of driving play. Virtanen led the team at plus-14 corsi.

Yes, Willie gave them the most o-zone starts of any line, but hey, in a game that means nothing, you can’t argue with putting the youngsters in a position to succeed.

Might be the way to go for the rest of the season.

 

4. State of the franchise

By now you’ve heard all the theories about ownership’s involvement on trade deadline day. I’m not going to rehash them here.

Regardless of the true story, this take can’t be far off.

 

5. Is the Great One taking over

This guy was at the game.

The day after the trade deadline? That wouldn’t go unnoticed.

Gretzky spoke on the Islanders’ broadcast during the first period, and the crew asked what brought him to Vancouver.

“You know what, I said I hadn’t seen rain in a while… I’m just kidding.

I’m fortunate enough, I’ve been 15 years with Breitling watches so I came here, I have a great relationship with them… We designed a Wayne Gretzky watch which is very cool. I came up here to spend some time with the people of Breitling. We had dinner earlier, we’re sitting in the box enjoying the game.”

As they say, the truth is out there.

(and it’s boring)

 

6. Think the Pres is having fun?

One week ago, Linden was on sports radio saying he loves how passionate the fans are in Vancouver and he’s excited for the challenge ahead.

That was before the trade deadline, of course.

During the game, he didn’t look as excited.

Maybe he saw this earlier?

Brace yourself.

Or it could’ve been this.

Twenty games left, eight points out of the final wild-card spot.

And the SixPack will be here to cover it all.

Note: Thanks to Ryan Biech for not being a bandwagon giffer

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Omar A has worked for 24 hours, the Canadian Press and TSN. He graduated from the Journalism program at the University of King's College
@omarcanuck

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