Canucks Post-Game SixPack - In the Eye of the Hurricane

Dec 19 2017, 1:36 pm

The Vancouver Canucks blew into Carolina to face the Hurricanes in the second of back-to-back games and came away with another valuable two points.

With their victory tonight, the Canucks jumped back into second place in the Pacific Division ahead of the San Jose Sharks and Los Angeles Kings. But hold on, because:

Thanks for that, Jeff Patterson…

I had completely forgotten that John-Michael Liles was even in the league anymore so Patterson may have a valid point here. Still, recording back-to-back shutouts on an Eastern road swing is no small feat and the Canucks should be applauded for how they have responded after laying an egg against the Nashville Predators on Tuesday Night.

So since it’s Friday night, why not grab another SixPack and read about how the Canucks are actually playing decent and entertaining hockey again!

Final score:  Canucks 3 – Hurricanes 0

Canucks goals:

  1. Derek Dorsett (5th goal) – Assisted by Kevin Bieksa and Nick Bonino
  2. Shawn Matthias (8th goal – Assisted by Jannik Hansen and Chris Tanev
  3. Alex Burrows (10th goal) – Ryan Stanton and Kevin Bieksa

Hurricane goals:

NONE. That’s a shame.

1. The (Head) Scratches – Part One

With Dan Hamhuis returning from his groin injury tonight, we knew that there was going to be some difficult decisions. We just didn’t know how many…

Yannick Weber was the easiest decision to make as he has always been a fringe player on the Canucks and only receiving a regular slot due to injuries this season. But with Frankie Corrado looking rather impressive on his most recent call-up, Willie Desjardins had a difficult decision to make and Luca Sbisa finally received his first healthy scratch of the season.

The Sbisa scratch comes as a bit of a shock, but only because it looked like he had a never-ending leash from Desjardins which prompted many to attribute this to being a “Benning guy” meaning part of the solution installed by the new regime during the summer. It looks like a young guy who is playing well finally gets a chance ahead of a veteran who has been struggling since September.

Speaking of “Benning guys”…

2. The (Head) Scratches – Part Two

Which, of course, brings us to Zack Kassian. Once again…

This was the second game in a row that Kassian was a healthy scratch which, to me, tells me his time in Vancouver is definitely coming to an end. Keep in mind that this isn’t insider information. It’s just an opinion.

There are dozens of articles out there discussing how the Canucks want Kassian to play and where his true value may actually lie so I’m not going to get into it here. But it is clear that this is a player that needs to have a fire lit under his ass every now and again, especially after a rough outing which Kassian fully admitted his game in Nashville was.

When you’re trying to light a fire under a young player that oozes potential, scratching him for two straight games probably isn’t the best method. This tells me that Kassian really isn’t a part of the Canucks’ future and that they firmly believe that they can win without the budding power-forward.

Unfortunately, shutting out teams in back-to-back games doesn’t exactly build the strongest case for Kassian to get back into the lineup anytime soon.


3. Derek Dorsett

Is Derek Dorsett the shrewdest move made by Jim Benning over the summer? There is definitely an argument to support that statement.

For a team that has lacked a true fourth line for years, Dorsett has been a revelation in Vancouver, helping to create a defensively responsible and offensively dangerous unit alongside Bo Horvat and Jannik Hansen. And for a supposed fourth line, Dorsett has a bit of a scoring touch and seems to have it when it matters the most: on the road.

Apparently when the Canucks need a shot in the arm from the fourth line, Dorsett can deliver. And if his ability to score on the road isn’t good enough for you, here’s a fantastic stat that should put all of the Zack Kassian talk into perspective:

Derek Dorsett has more points (14) than Zack Kassian (5) and Cody Hodgson (6). Combined!

4. The Depth Came Through

That’s pretty much how the Vancouver market works. Lose a couple of games and the team is complete garbage. Win a couple and the Canucks have the depth to compete with anyone in the National Hockey League.

Granted, Vancouver hasn’t exactly been playing against the class of the league over their past two games. And while the Sedins haven’t been able to dominate, the rest of the Canucks forwards have really stepped up:


5. It’s Miller Time


For an overpaid and over-the-hill goalie who is only wasting valuable Eddie Lack development time, Ryan Miller has had quite a start to 2015.

I’m not entirely convinced this is sustainable, especially considering Miller has openly admitted to wearing down if given too heavy of a work load.  But ever since he had a couple of days to rest of the Christmas holidays, Miller has been exceptional and has made some massive saves at important moments in his games.

So however you may feel about the circumstances surrounding the signing of Ryan Miller, you have to give the guy some credit for the run he is currently on.

6. Ian Lusher Absolutely Nailed it

Our boy Ian Lusher wisely predicted the Canucks would prevail 3-0 over the Hurricanes and he absolutely nailed it while also serving a fresh plate of crow to one of our most loyal readers.

Enjoy this one Lush!