Canucks SixPack: three-game winning streak = killing the draft dream

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The Canucks touched greatness less than a week ago.

Last Tuesday, after Vancouver lost to San Jose – their ninth loss in a row – they were tied with Edmonton and Toronto for last place in the NHL.

They were so close to having that 20% chance at the first overall draft pick that comes with the coveted last-place spot.

Then they went on a three-game winning streak – their longest stretch of success in this season from hell.

On Monday, they beat the Kings 3-2.

Salvaging a horrible season? No matter how many players say it, the fans aren’t buying it.

Only one positive can come out of this season, and that’s elite talent in the draft. Oh, they still do have a chance at Auston Matthews, but the odds went way down with this win.

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1. Tank theories

There is some debate with the Canucks in an intense battle for one of the top spots in the NHL (at the draft).

Willie had some thoughts earlier Monday.

Funny thing is Willie’s not the only one who thinks this way. The Sedins do, Jim Benning does, many fans do, and a bunch of media members say this often as well (especially the ones employed by the team – funny how that works).

Here’s a question for anyone who does: would you rather have Connor McDavid in your lineup and no winning culture, or no McDavid, but more accountability?

As soon as I wrote that I realized I’m asking if you’d rather be in the Oilers’ shoes or the Canucks shoes right now?

The answer seems obvious to me – you take the talent and teach it to win, because a talent-less bunch can only go so far, regardless how hard they try.

Not that the Canucks are talentless… they’re not. They have aging talent in the Sedins, and some young talent in Hutton, Virtanen, McCann.

The gap is “elite” talent. Sure, it might be filled by McCann, Virtanen, Hutton, and more likely Boeser and Demko… but who knows? Cody Hodgson was supposed to turn into elite talent too, as was Nail Yakupov… and those didn’t exactly turn out well.

Point is you need to take as many shots as you can, and hope you hit on a some.

 

2. Miller isn’t making friends

After Miller won first star of the game – and he fully deserved it, holding off the Kings’ 20-6 shot differential in the third – he said wins like this will set the foundation for the future. He told the Rogers Arena crowd he feels bad for the fans that Vancouver missed the playoffs, but the team still has a job to do.

Think fans would love that dedication from their goalie? Let’s see…

 

3. Responses to Kuz are better

I haven’t read Kuz’s article – didn’t have the time yet, but I did see his tweet and I had a feeling it wouldn’t be received well.

You tell me.

kuzreplies

 

4. Thinking clearly

Here’s someone thinking clearly:

Here’s someone who’s not thinking clearly:

Here’s someone thinking clearly:

Here’s why:

No one said the Canucks can’t win the draft lottery. Fact is, their chances of doing it went from 20% to 7.5% in the span of six days.

 

5. Willie’s flip-flop

Before Monday’s game, Vancouver had the second lowest power play goals-total in the league.

Asked why the team’s second-best goal scorer – Hansen – hasn’t played on that sad power play, Willie has repeatedly said Hansen scores his goals off the rush, he’s not suited to the power play.

Fans disagreed – Hansen has shown a remarkable ability to adapt to whatever situation he’s put in over his career be it fourth-line grinder, top-line winger, penalty killer, or quote machine.

Monday, he finally made it onto the power play, and guess what?

Note that Hansen didn’t make the power play by any stroke of genius from the coaches – he was there because of injuries, and that’s about it.

Willie on Hansen’s PP goal after the game: “He’s a shooter and he can score backdoor like that.”

Really?

Now imagine he’d been there all year long… back when games mattered… could he have made a difference in all those one-goal losses from October to December?

Willie says he can score like that… so…

anistonyes

 

6. Tryamkin – the big positive

OK, whatever happens in the off-season, you can still look forward to this guy playing in Vancouver next year.

Who knows – random ol’ Willie might even try this.

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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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