Just as we predicted, the Canucks followed up an ugly game in Minnesota with a slightly less ugly game in St. Louis. It’s amazing, however, how a one-goal game can seem so lopsided. When the Blues were in the offensive zone, it constantly seemed like they were on the verge of a gorgeous scoring chance, while the Canucks seemed to have trouble getting the puck towards the net with any regularity. In their post-game comments, however, the Canucks seemed positive, saying that they played a more complete game and stuck with their process, which brings to mind a game from last season.

On November 21, 2010, the Canucks lost 3-2 to the Phoenix Coyotes. It was the second game of a back-to-back following their worst performance of the year, the infamous Voldemort Game. In the IWTG for that loss to the Coyotes, we bemoaned the absence of Sami Salo, the shoddiness of the defence, and the lack of cycle to the Sedins game. The players, however, felt like they had performed well and stuck with their system. This should sound familiar for anyone who watched this game, and it therefore sounded familiar to me, because I watched this game.

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Last night’s game against the Minnesota Wild was absolutely miserable, a nearly unwatchable mess that saw the Canucks give up 45 shots on net, with a large number of them being golden scoring opportunities. After two big wins against the Capitals and Flames, it looked like the Canucks had put their early season struggles behind them, but last night demonstrated that this might not have been the case.

Kevin Bieksa described the game as “one of the worst performances I have been part of in this jersey” and it’s hard to argue with him. Fortunately, that game is over. Seriously. It ended last night. It’s over forever. Stop thinking about it. Tonight is a brand new game against a brand new team. It cannot possibly be as bad at that game.

Want to know why we’re so certain tonight’s game will be better? We have compiled 20 reasons.

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Fans of fighting often argue that fights can turn the tide of a game or give energy to a team that’s playing with lethargy, and, while I’ve always found this to be a silly argument, it’s important to note what happened during the first two minutes of Staubitz and Volpatti’s major penalties: the Wild finally broke through on Cory Schneider, scoring twice and turning a 1-0 deficit into a 2-1 lead. They never looked back.

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Drance Numbers is the silly research wing of PITB. While Messrs. Wagner and Mooney blog nationally and solve mysteries, Drance Numbers will look into the minutiae of quantifiable NHL data and bore you with it every Friday. Today, Drance chats with Brian King, the inventor of PDO.

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The Breeders’ Cup is just about to get underway at Churchill Downs. It’s grown from humble beginnings in 1984 to one of the highlights in the racing season. You’ll be hard pressed to find a more competitive gathering of racehorses in North America. This of course, translates into one heck of a betting bonanza as [...]

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For those that thought the Canucks were in the clear the moment the clock struck November, that, perhaps, all that spotty play was exclusive to October, I submit tonight’s game as evidence to the contrary. Don’t let the early goal fool you — this was the polar opposite of a sixty-minute effort, an utter bedwetting, the worst thing to happen in Minnesota since Morris Day steals Apollonia in Purple Rain. Of course, unlike that film, tonight’s game was unwatchable, and I should know, because I watched this game.

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