I Watched This Playoff Game: Canucks vs Los Angeles Kings, April 22, 2012

Though it was a tough way to lose the game, the Canucks can take solace in getting the game to overtime and earning the single point.

Wait, what? That’s not how it works in the playoffs? The Canucks have been eliminated? That’s it? It’s over?

Oh.

I watched this game.

Canucks 1 – 2 Kings (OT)

  • Cory Schneider was once again superb, making 35 stops, well justifying his coach’s confidence in him. It was his third straight game where he allowed just one goal in regulation, which should have been sufficient for three wins. In fact, the Canucks scored four goals in regulation during those three games, so on aggregate, the Canucks won all three and are ahead in the series 3-2. That’s how this works, right?
  • On the plus side, at least the Canucks didn’t get anyone’s hopes up by getting to game seven of the Stanley Cup Final before being knocked out of the playoffs. That makes me feel way better about having to wait nearly six months for meaningful Canucks hockey.
  • An early highlight in the game was Jannik Hansen’s ridiculous spin-o-rama in the neutral zone. With Jordan Nolan bearing down on him, Hansen noticed that Nolan had no interest in the puck whatsoever and was just looking for the big hit, so Hansen poked the puck ahead, spun around Nolan, and picked the puck up on the other side. It was an absolutely absurd move and uncharacteristically flashy for the hardworking Dane, but it’s worth noting that the move came on a delayed penalty call, meaning there was no risk of it going awry.
  • With that said, Hansen pulled off all sorts of uncharacteristic moves in this series. For instance, after an entire season of always passing on a 2-on-1, he shot the puck every single time he was in that situation against the Kings. I’m beginning to suspect he was replaced with his doppelganger from a mirror universe at the start of the playoffs and I should have figured it out sooner: our Hansen has no facial hair, while the Hansen we saw in the playoffs, like the mirror universe Spock, clearly does.
  • What? What’s a playoff beard? What does that have to do with mirror universe Jannik Hansen having facial hair?
  • Alex Edler needs to spend the off-season finding a new brand of hockey stick that doesn’t break at inopportune moments. Quite frankly, if I was Easton, I’d pull my sponsorship from Edler, as he’s making their product look incredibly fragile. This game featured the most absurd broken stick yet, as he broke it trying to make a 5-foot pass to Henrik Sedin in his own end, leading to a dangerous turnover.
  • While Daniel Sedin’s setup on Henrik Sedin’s opening goal was sublimely wizardous, I’d like to draw attention to the contributions of Dan Hamhuis and Ryan Kesler instead. While on the powerplay, Hamhuis kept the puck in along the boards twice, the second time sacrificing the integrity of his left leg to do so (notably the only time the Community Man has ever sacrificed his integrity). Then, when Henrik flung the puck across the ice to his brother, Kesler cut through the slot, attracting the attention of defenceman Matt Greene away from Henrik for the return feed, managing to do so without leaning against a block of ice while naked.
  • Even better than the goal? The celebration afterwards. The Sedins managed to elevate awkward goal celebrations to an art form. Daniel flew in behind the net, expecting a big jumping hug with his big brother. Henrik, however, had other ideas, as he brushed Daniel aside and went into the corner for his own, down-on-one-knee fist pump. It’s hard to blame Henrik for dodging Daniel, who clearly left his feet and was aiming for the head.
  • It would be pretty easy to blame Kevin Bieksa for the giveaway that led to an Anze Kopitar breakaway with just a few seconds remaining in the first period, but the fault lies with David Booth’s pass that went directly into Bieksa’s skates. While I’m optimistic for next season, the arrival of this Booth has led to a bit more of a bogus journey than an excellent adventure. Fortunately, like Rufus, Schneider was there to bail him out.
  • During a first intermission interview, Scott Oake asked Henrik whether his brother makes him an elite player. Henrik’s response was perfect: I thought it was the other way around.
  • This could have been a very different game if Daniel had been able to convert on his breakaway opportunity late in the second period, but Jonathan Quick, like he did all series, made the save look easy. Of course, it could also have been a very different game if the Kings had converted on any of their Grade-A scoring chances in the first two periods, but Cory Schneider, the master impressionist, did several spot-on impressions of great saves.
  • Through 40 minutes, things looked pretty good for the Canucks. They opened the scoring, Schneider was locked in, they were creating scoring chances, and they were driving hard to the net to draw penalties. Then, like the second half of Hancock, it all started coming apart. I thought the two best Canucks in this game were Cory Schneider and Dan Hamhuis. It seems fitting, then, that they were the two players directly at fault for the two Kings’ goals.
  • On the game-tying goal, Drew Doughty made a great play to drive wide on Keith Ballard, who managed to keep his stick in the gap to at least prevent Doughty from driving to the net. Schneider, for some reason, completely overplayed Doughty, to the point that when Doughty swung the puck out front to Brad Richardson, Schneider was beside the net, which is a bad place to be to stop a puck. It’s possible that Schneider is an adamant advocate of net neutrality and was making a political statement by leaving the net wide open, but an elimination game is not the time for politics.
  • While Schneider was getting political, Henrik and Edler should have done a better job of tying up Richardson’s stick. They get blame assists on the goal.
  • The Canucks were lucky to last as long in overtime as they did after Henrik left Jeff Carter (former 46-goal scorer) all alone in front of the net. Somehow, this noted sniper managed to whiff entirely on his first shot, then lift the puck well over the net on his second. It was hilariously awful, but let me draw your attention to the fact that he had enough time for two clean shot attempts from directly in front of the net. IN OVERTIME. Like jean shorts where you can see the bottom of the pockets, that’s not supposed to happen.
  • Mason Raymond came just short of the most ridiculous instant redemption ever, as he smartly drove around the net with Quick out of position and had a wraparound opportunity with a wide open net. Unfortunately for Raymond, the universe hates him, and he hit the post. On the plus side, now we don’t have to suffer through endless Canucks Army articles refuting Raymond’s clutchness.
  • Shortly after this season’s designated goat came just short of becoming a hero, this season’s best defenceman committed a terrible turnover leading to the series-winning goal. Dan Hamhuis came wheeling out from behind the net, like he has done so many times this season. Instead of safely banking the puck off the boards or hitting a teammate with an outlet pass, however, he tried to skate it out and got caught by Trevor Lewis, who poked the puck off his stick to send Jarret Stoll in on a 2-on-1 with Dwight Kings. Stoll’s shot was perfectly placed in the top corner over Schneider’s blocker.
  • What really upsets me about Stoll’s goal isn’t actually Hamhuis’s turnover. That was a great hustle play by Lewis and those kinds of mistakes are completely understandable. What upsets me is Samme Pahlsson going for a line change before Hamhuis has gained centre and dumped the puck into the Kings’ zone. Pahlsson was in the defensive zone as Hamhuis carried the puck and he could see that Lewis was right on him, but instead of waiting, he went for the line change right away. If he had waited, it would have been a 2-on-2 and Salo would have been able to pressure Stoll and prevent a shot.
  • This was Sami Salo’s 100th career playoff game. I sincerely hope it was not his last. I like that guy.
  • Finally, I want to sincerely thank all of you on behalf of Harrison and myself for supporting Pass it to Bulis and reading the IWTGs and other articles we write. This was our first full year with the Vancouver Sun and it was a wonderful success thanks to great readers like you. PITB will still be running at full capacity throughout the offseason, so continue to check the blog every day and we’ll continue entertaining and informing you to the best of our ability.
  • And if you feel like this guy right now, we don’t blame you.

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99 comments

  1. Ben Phillips
    April 23, 2012

    Playoffs??!!!! Well the media and the “FANS” fans got their wish and another tombstone is added to the goalie graveyard. Roberto Luongo is the the best goalie this franchise has ever seen and the way the “what have you done for me lately” fans have treated him is disgusting…
    CORY SCHNEIDER HAS WON 1 PLAYOFF GAME and fans are talking about him like hes the 2nd coming of christ!! Dont misinterpret me I LOVE THE SCHNEIDS, but this series AND THE Stanley CUP Final last year the Canucks had nothing to do with goaltending…. THE END ALL BE ALL WAS the Canucks inability to score goals.
    GO CANUCKS GO always… but I will bet all my money that within 3 years another tombstone will be being carved up . Goaltending MAY win you A cup but SCORING GOALS WILL WIN YOU 4 (ask wayne gretzky) !!
    Interesting offseason to say the least…. GO CANUCKS GO!!!!

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    • tj
      April 23, 2012

      Well, on the upside, Luongo will not be blamed for losing this last game (though I suspect some will somehow try to blame him).

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      • Gadsby
        April 23, 2012

        The best I can come up with are “Luongo didn’t play, he lost us the series” and “Luongo didn’t score enough goals”. Take your pick.

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        • tj
          April 23, 2012

          Line more likely to be heard:
          If Shneids had been in goal those first two games…

          Line not likely to be heard:
          Luongo had his cap on funny. Blame funny Bob.

          I suspect it’s going to be an angsty off-season.

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          • hockeyispretty
            April 23, 2012

            You`re kidding, but seriously, on the “5 reasons Canucks lost” article on NHLdotcom, a Bruins fan posted a comment that the expression on Luongo`s face (!) in games 1 and 2 showed that he wasn`t the right choice to play. Sigh.

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        • hockeyispretty
          April 23, 2012

          Luongo didn`t steal the game for us! Great goaltenders are supposed to steal games.

          The NHL website has a really dumb article, “5 reasons the Canucks lost”. Reason 5: they started the wrong goaltender. Should have started Schneider. Then goes on to point out that Luongo could not be blamed for the loss of either game 1 or game 2. Facepalm.

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  2. Brent
    April 23, 2012

    Thanks to both of you as well! It has been great to read your articles and all the great comments. We’ll get them next year!

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    Rating: +28 (from 28 votes)
  3. Ginger
    April 23, 2012

    I want to pretend I’m not really that sad at all. So I made a list of reasons why this is acutally a good thing.
    1. I’ll save SOOO much money.
    2. Instead of getting fat on pub food and beer I can get in shape and be ready for summer.
    3. Summer start before mid-June. No vitamin D withdrawl for me this year!
    4. No emotional breakdowns every second day. I turned into Jekyl and Hyde last year.
    If only I believed any of them.
    Thanks to this blog for keeping me sane throughout the year. Daniel and Harrison, you guys rock. I can always depend on a logical and creative post when everyone else seems determined to create controversy.
    Thanks for another great year Canucks, and as always- there’s always next year! 2013 seems like a good year to win it all…

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    • Nee
      April 23, 2012

      Yeah, I’m in the same boat. Trying to pretend that this loss doesn’t make me really sad. And it’s not so much that we don’t have the chance to win the cup this year. We’ll win it eventually. Even if it takes another 20 years, I’ll still be here, cheering themon.

      It’s that the Sedins will be 32 in September. We only have so much time to win with these guys. And I can’t accept that Brad Marchand has a ring but the Sedins don’t. Ugh.

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    • iceman
      April 23, 2012

      Yep, we’ll win the cup next year… if the world doesn’t come to an end in 2012 as Mayans predicted :-) . Oh, that and plus as long as there isn’t another lockout. I can’t imagine myself getting through winter without watching hockey, so I keep my fingers crossed.

      My hat’s off to Daniel and Harrison. I couldn’t have kept my hockey sanity without you guys’ objective (well, mostly) and witty blog. I’ll keep coming back here even during offseason to quench my thirst for hockey and Canucks talk.

      Job well done, guys!

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    • hockeyispretty
      April 23, 2012

      (Bright side, bright side, bright side… with face buried in my hands, I`m looking on the bright side…)

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  4. bc
    April 23, 2012

    When I woke up this morning, I briefly forgot that it was Monday, that I had to get up for work…and that the Canucks had lost last night. Then……oh. Darn.

    Looking forward to getting your views on what changes the Canucks need to make, as well as what changes they actually make….and what changes they shouldn’t make.

    Thanks for all the excellent posts this year! I stumbled across PITB during the playoffs last year and it’s been a much appreciated daily source of entertainment. Keep up the great work!

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  5. Lucky
    April 23, 2012

    So sad that Canucks hockey is over… And such a loooong break compared to last year. Was hoping to pass the time between spring & summer semester watching the boys play…sigh.

    Thanks you guys for all of your great articles and all of the game reviews! Glad there will be stuff to read in the summer…hockey withdrawal sucks!

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  6. invisibleairwaves
    April 23, 2012

    Thanks to you guys for all the insights, analysis, and 90′s pop-culture references. Looking forward to reading your takes on what will no doubt be an interesting offseason.

    I’m gonna go cry now.

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  7. Rino Bambino
    April 23, 2012

    Thank you for a great article. Thank you to all the Canucks fans. Thank you for all the sadness you deserve for supporting this team full of diving, whining, soft crybabies! Your city is in a bubble. You can’t complain your way to a Stanley Cup. If a team is physical, you call them goons. Wake up! The reality is that when a team plays physical hockey, you call them Stanley Cup Champions!

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    • Nee
      April 23, 2012

      Hi there friend! Thanks for visiting!

      Great insight : )

      /sarcasm

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  8. swizzler
    April 23, 2012

    I think DownGoesBrown put it best: “the fatal flaw of the Vigneault-era Canucks was that they struggled to score against Vezina-quality goaltending.” Eurgh. My immediate thought is, why on earth did Gillis trade for Kassian when the mandate was to win NOW? He has had no impact since arriving. The lack of secondary scoring was critical, and once again the 4th line was a non-factor. For whatever reason, the Canucks have struggled since Hodgson left. They were a better team with him in the lineup.

    While the results of the Canucks games might not be great, reading IWTG is always enjoyable. Keep up the good work.

    I look forward to all sorts of new offseason features such as ‘Hurricane Luongo Watch- will he hit the Florida coast? Stay tuned for unprecedented, overbearing, and unfair media hype as they try to run him out of town.’

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    • Josh D.
      April 23, 2012

      I’m sorry, but I can’t sit here without pointing out that fact that Mike Richards, who is among if not the hardest forechecking forward in the game, would have pounced on Cody every chance he got. Cody would not have had any impact on this series, despite what the CDC claims.

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      • Nee
        April 23, 2012

        THIS

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    • Chris the Curmudgeon
      April 23, 2012

      Wish we could’ve had a mulligan on that one. Cody’s contributions on the 2nd power play early in the series would’ve been particularly welcome.

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      • Lenny
        April 23, 2012

        Yes I agree Chris. The Kassian trade, for the time being, seem to have been a mistake. We know how you feel about Kassian, but the rest of the hockey world believes that he will be a good player in years to come. Let’s hope that will be the case.

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    • Drew
      April 23, 2012

      I too thought a few times this series of the Hodgson/Kassian trade. The full returns won’t be clear for a couple of years, but the early returns on that trade have not been good. Kassian made no impact on this series – I think his total ice time barely amounted to one full game for most players. Gragnani didn’t play at all. The second unit power play, which Hodgson had clearly helped, was ineffective. The first three games when D Sedin was out, having an additional playmaker like Hodgson might have helped. How nice it would have been to have Hodgson score one off the rush on a wired slapshot as he did against Thomas mid-season?

      Even more profoundly, for me the Hodgson trade symbolized a mid-season shift for the Canucks from an up tempo, skill team to a team that wasn’t sure what it’s identity was, but wanted to be able to play any which way depending on its opponent – shutdown vs. the grinder teams, physical vs. the teams tending to thuggishness, up tempo vs Detroit and Chicago. But in diluting their approach, they became not particularly excellent at any of the three styles, and they paid for it.

      Meanwhile, I’m suddenly seeing that the Canucks may also have lost the Booth-Samuelson trade. Booth is a great skater and can look great at times driving the net. But he doesn’t seem to be able to make or receive a pass – certainly not compared to Samuelson. I’m now nostalgic for the dynamic unpredictability of Samuelson, able (at his best) to pick up the trailing player with the pass or just wire it on net when you didnt expect him to. I see Samuelson has 4 points in the Florida series; Booth had just 1 point. Sigh.

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      • Nick
        April 23, 2012

        nice post Drew … sums up what a lot of people are thinking I’m sure

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    • peanutflower
      April 23, 2012

      Doesn’t every team struggle to score against “Vezina-quality goaltending” ? Isn’t that what makes Vezina-quality goaltending Vezina-quality goaltending is a propensity to not let in goals? I would understand it more if you said “the fatal flow of the Vigneault-era Canucks was that they struggled to score.”

      Anyway, c’est la vie. I hope the Aquilinis don’t go all twitchy and make a bunch of wholesale changes. I agree with Drew. It’s like GMMG and AV had a meeting mid-season and said, if we’re going to win the SC we better get into clutch and grab defence hockey mode now. Only they didn’t have a team that could play that way. Nor should they. Kesler obviously needs time off, and probably so do the Sedins. They need to make a decision about what kind of hockey they want to play and then go from there. I sincerely hope with all my heart that they stay true to the style of hockey that has made them the Presidents’ trophy winners for two years in a row.

      I heartily bemoan the demise of the wonderful hockey the Canucks team was built to play. I’m sad that whoeve wins the SC will not be playing that kind of hockey, and nor will a team that plays like the Canucks be ever likely to win the SC unless the refs stop creating a whole new set of rules and rule application and other teams stop this ridiculous trap clutch and grab approach. It’s horrible to watch and I for one will not be watching the rest of the playoffs because that’s how all the teams that are left play. If the Canucks never win a SC and still play their wonderful style that’s just fine with me.

      It’s too bad also that the game had to end on a bad note, and that the Canucks as “divers” notion will be still perpetuated, even though that isn’t what happened.

      Now I have lots of free time. What to do?

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      • Zach Morris
        April 23, 2012

        In regards to the quote from Down Goes Brown that “the fatal flaw of the Vigneault-era Canucks was that they struggled to score against Vezina-quality goaltending” , it’s a joke.
        Down Goes Brown is meant to be taken tongue in cheek.

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    • PeeSeeGee
      April 23, 2012

      Where would Cody have played when he was scoring all these goals? I a defensive role in place of Pahlson? In place of Kesler? On the wing? While I agree, Kassian was a non-factor in this series, I don’t think there is any evidence to support that Cody would have been.

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  9. Canuck In Oz
    April 23, 2012

    No tears, no tantrums…just an empty feeling after the game. High expectations were a b*tch, for sure.

    Couple things on my mind:

    a) I hope that those that are proclaiming Cory as the Best Goaltender Of Canucks History (as well described in Ben’s comments above) realize that there’s a chance, however small, that this was just a really, really good year by the young man, and that Lu has had a mediocre year (by the fans’ lofty standards). Because, if (and yes, I’m aware it’s a mighty big IF) Lu gets moved on, and Cory suddenly doesn’t perform in the upcoming years, lots of people are going to look awfully stupid.

    b) I hope that Kesler takes some time off. He just didn’t seem right most of the year, and maybe it’s just me but I have trouble believing that he’s over his hip issues. I mean, I’m still getting over rupturing my ACL last year. Admittedly, there’s a big difference between a professional athlete and a hack Aussie Rules Football player on the wrong side of 40 but the hip isn’t exactly something that you bounce back from, especially with the time between his surgery and him coming back to play. It just didn’t seem like much recovery time, and I’d really like to see more Beast next year. In fact, I’d say it’s fairly important to this teams’ success next year that we see more Beast.

    c) Next year, I don’t give a s**t whether we win the Presidents Trophy or not. In fact, I’d prefer to win the division, get a top three seed and take it from there. I just want to have my team have another serious bite at the cherry before this group is broken up.

    d) Thanks to you guys for the IWTG. I only discovered it halfway through the season, and have enjoyed each & every write up…you know it’s good when this site helps you get through a particularly galling loss. Enjoy your summer…while I, and all my fellow expats & Aussie Canuck fans, work our way through our winter. Could be worse: at least the cricket isn’t on…

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    • Lenny
      April 23, 2012

      Kesler, Raymond and Malhotra suffered the most from off season surgeries. They also happened to be the most disappointing players this year despite best efforts. I’m sure they will be much better next season. We should’ve give up Raymond so quickly yet.

      As for Edler, he had his broken hand fixed in the off season but seemed to have had a good regular season… not sure what his problem was in this series.

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  10. Zach Morris
    April 23, 2012

    My name is Zachary Morris, and I’m a Canuckaholic.
    I watched Luongo’s first game, Linden’s last, and I remember listening to a rookie named Alexandre Burrows play on the Team 1040 and thinking, this guy is gonna be special.
    I started out watching hockey in the 2004 playoffs. The Canucks got eliminated in the first round.
    I’m just as disappointed today as I was then.
    But I still stood and cheered as our boys skated off the ice today, and I’ll stand and cheer when we kick off our quest for Lord Stanley next season.
    I’m a Canuckaholic, and I hope my addiction never ends.

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    • obituary mambo
      April 23, 2012

      I, too, am addicted to the Canucks. It’s going to be an impossibly long off season, but with any luck that will help the team in the long run. #Canucksfanforlife #beliveinblue #2013

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      • obituary mambo
        April 23, 2012

        The problem with hashtags is that it isn’t immediately apparent if you’ve mistyped. Grrr…

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    • iceman
      April 23, 2012

      What can I say. I’m with you ATW…

      On an unrelated note, I’m cheering for Coyotes and Capitals for the time being. Actually Caps had a chance to eliminate Bruins yesterday but didn’t… It would lessen my pain somewhat if we see the Boston go home early. Chicago deserves to share our fate for Duncan Keith taking Daniel out with his vicious elbow, keeping him out of the lineup until it was too late.

      Then again, how many of us would want to watch Blues – Rangers SCF?

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  11. Tom
    April 23, 2012

    Tight Bulis. Real tight.
    http://homestarrunner.com/sbemail147.html

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  12. sarah
    April 23, 2012

    Thanks for all your awesome work over the year. I look forward to what you come up with in the off season. Onwards and Upwards, no?

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  13. cyanocitta jay
    April 23, 2012

    The Hawks refused to go away
    They lived to play another day
    Which can’t be said for San Jose
    Vancouver’s on at five today

    And when they were who’s thirty three
    Who scored the goal fans prayed to see
    Jenny tells me it’s Hank Sedin
    One of the best that I have seen

    And thirty-five is quite good too
    For without him we’d have a few
    Though in the third the game we tied
    I felt for her when Jenny cried

    And then it was next goal would win
    Next year your team can try again

    Cyanocitta Jay

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  14. Chris the Curmudgeon
    April 23, 2012

    One has to sit and hope that our GM doesn’t do anything too reactionary that might be regretted. Setbacks happen, but blowing up the team over this could be the biggest mistake of all. I still think the Cody Hodgson trade was a huge bungle, and frankly I’m not entirely sure we won the Booth trade either, but this core still has a few really good years left.

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    • Lenny
      April 23, 2012

      I don’t think we should see the Booth trade as our attempt to rip Florida off. In Booth, we got somebody we didn’t really have in our lineup before: a young semi-power forward winger with speed to burn. Samuelsson is a good player but his contract was expiring, as with his career.

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      • Chris the Curmudgeon
        April 23, 2012

        We also got a guy with a boat anchor contract who produced all of one point in the playoffs despite top line minutes. Samuelsson, as much as he’s on the backside of his career, put up points at a better pace than Booth this year and has 4 points in a series that the Panthers are primed to win. The Panthers are also completely free of him and Sturm after this season should they so desire. Booth might come back and impress, but so far, that trade has probably been won by Florida. And before we talk about what we need in the lineup, let’s not forget how good Sammy was in the playoffs in the past: particularly telling are the 11 points he put up in 6 games against the Kings 2 years ago, including scoring 7 goals past Quick. I wouldn’t have minded having that again.

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        • Lenny
          April 23, 2012

          We could’ve gotten Sammy back at the deadline. That would’ve been funny!

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          • hockeyispretty
            April 23, 2012

            3 Sammys (Sami, Samme P, and M Samuelsson) is TOO MANY. Head hurts.

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    • J21
      April 23, 2012

      Yeah, the inevitable (and annual — even last year) calls on the ‘Net to “rip apart the team”, etc., are so infuriating. A 5-game sample size does not overrule an 82-game one. Note how the Red Wings are not going to burn anything to the ground in spite of also getting knocked out by a good team.

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      • hockeyispretty
        April 23, 2012

        Thanks for this! I thought I was the only one in the world to think so!

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  15. Biznow
    April 23, 2012

    As I hang my head, and wait for that damn stick and rink logo that I mowed into my front lawn to grow back in (seemed like a fun idea at the time, but now will serve as a reminder of failure for the next few weeks). I can take solace in the fact that through the tears in my eyes I can still make out the words in this article. I can still read, and I read I Watched This Game.

    Great season PITB.

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  16. BBoone
    April 23, 2012

    Great work by PITB and I advise the faithful to relax a bit. When was the last time a team went to the finals two years in a row ? Cody H would not have made a difference and the trade has many ramifications that need to play out before a final judgement. Losing Daniel was a lot to take and how many long playoff runs have been fueled by a world class goalie such as Quick, clearly in that goalie zone. Besides , as fans, we can always wait till next year.

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    • hockeyispretty
      April 23, 2012

      Agreed. I think it takes longer to recharge than most people give credit for, given the closeness of the skill sets within the league. And Quick was in the zone. I remember feeling ominous when San Jose won their last game, as I would have much preferred to play against them than Quick and co. On the other hand, instead of another tiring deep run, these guys can rest and train this summer and come back stinging with rage and in top form. More hockey to come, now enjoy the summer, everyone!

      And when the haters get to you, just remember: they hate us BECAUSE we`re already enjoying sunshine and green grass.

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  17. Brosef Stalin
    April 23, 2012

    Well fought boys, take a nice long rest and get ready for a deep run next season!

    …and I guess the Canucks should do that too ;)

    Good work to everyone at PiTB, and thanks for making the season less pool-flippingly rage inducing for me. Hope I can continue to get my absurdity fix from your articles over the summer as you scrape for scraps of hockey news along with the rest of the Canucks media, and break increasingly silly stories as the flow dries up…

    …and I wouldn’t have it any other way :)

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    • hockeyispretty
      April 23, 2012

      Agree 100%: nothing but IWTG made me feel better after a loss. Besides laughing about the dopey bits of the game, just reading the issues written up in a meaningful and balanced way instead of reactionary twaddle or “here`s the story, now what facts can we cherry-pick to support it…”

      You guys rock, PITB, and so do our Canucks.

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  18. obituary mambo
    April 23, 2012

    Thanks for an awesome season PITB — you guys totally rule.

    I’m still too stunned to properly process thought, so the following may sound as if it comes from some sort of fever dream, but I’m pretty sure I want Chicago to win their first round series — if only so there will be one solidly offensive team heading into the second round from the Western Conference. Not to mention, Chicago/Nashville looks a lot more intriguing than Phoenix/Nashville does. Then again, the thought of Chicago winning anything is squick inducing on a nearly unimaginable level, so… there’s that. Obviously I’d root for the Preds over the ‘Hawks, but at the very least I’d like the opportunity to see pretty goals. Actually, I’ve just remembered that I caught a Nashville/Phoenix game earlier this season that ended 5-4 and was instantly dubbed the most boring high scoring game of all time. At least that’s how I chose to describe it. ;)

    After taking in the social media scene I feel an article along the lines of “In praise of the death of exciting hockey: Kings/Blues fans celebrate a match-up that is almost certain to bore fans of the skilled game to tears.” Whatever happened to league of elite high scoring teams Betteman and Co. were supposedly trying cultivate?

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    • obituary mambo
      April 23, 2012

      Also, saw this little gem on the twitter machine. Courtesy of Adam Proteau:

      The Blues/Kings matchup may be the first playoff series in NHL history to have no goals scored & be decided purely on exhaustion/attrition.

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      • hockeyispretty
        April 23, 2012

        Hmm… felt very like that during some of our Preds games last year. ;)

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    • Amor de Cosmos
      April 23, 2012

      “Whatever happened to league of elite high scoring teams Betteman and Co. were supposedly trying cultivate?”

      It died around the all-star break when the calls for defensive interference and routine cross-checks stopped being made. It’s no coincidence that the Nux, Wings and Sharks, elite offensive teams in the west last year all had early exits — and the Hawks are hanging on by their fingernails. The GMs of these clubs must be spitting feathers, given the time, effort and money they’ve invested only to have the rug pulled out from their work mid-season. But that’s typical NHL duck-tape policy making, seat of the pants, knee-jerk, ill-considered.

      Bitter? Me? Not at all.

      Anyway thanks guys, LiTB is an island of sanity in the morass that passes for hockey discourse these days, long may you run (to quote another great Canadian.)

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      • obituary mambo
        April 24, 2012

        You’re right, of course. I guess what I was actually wondering was why Betteman and his wonder crew had allowed it happen. If a dynamic, high flying game is what they wanted, why didn’t they do more to ensure its survival? I’m not sure who is in charge of hiring referees and enforcing rules, but surely more could be done if this were a matter of genuine concern. The elimination of the West’s last remaining offense first team should have the higher-ups panicking about how, exactly, they’re going to attract new viewers to the sport. I find it hard to believe that anyone who isn’t already a fan of one of the four western teams still standing is actually going to tune into either series, let alone be drawn to the sport.

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  19. Brent
    April 23, 2012

    Hey just thought of something. Thomas Drance said the Kings would win in 6. Ha! Completely wrong. Curse you and your numbers!

    Seriously though, looking forward to more Drance numbers next year. I suspect there will be some changes on the team, and we are counting on you to crunch the numbers for us. Much better than the entrail reading we get from most MSM types.

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  20. Chinstrap Joe
    April 23, 2012

    Thanks PITB for setting a high bar on Canucks post game insight.

    Thank you too to the Canucks for setting a high bar of expectations last year – unfortunately they didn’t meet thier own expectations so a first round exit can only be considered a failure of epic proportions. Any of you who state that another Presidents Trophy ain’t bad is living in another dimension. Detroit is the perfect example of a team that hung onto a roster and system far too long while the game and league is changing around them. We’ve tried to emulate Detroit for the past few years – I hope we don’t go down that road with them too…

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    • peanutflower
      April 23, 2012

      I dunno, they won a Cup or two with that team, right? I don’t consider this a failure by the Canucks so much as I consider it a failure by the “system” that encourages Kings-style hockey over Wings/Canucks/Maybe Hawks. My heart palpitates at the idea of having a regression by the Canucks and a bunch of knee jerk off season moves that change the tenor of the team. I for one won’t be watching any Canucks games if all I see is the Blues in Canucks uniforms.

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  21. Parker
    April 23, 2012

    Another great season for PITB. Thanks, Daniel and Harrison!

    As for the Canucks… well, there’s always next season right? I agree with everyone who has already made comments along the lines of hoping that Gillis keeps his head during the off-season.

    Looking forward to the off-season with PITB :)

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  22. Celeste
    April 23, 2012

    PITB is my favourite hockey blog.
    So glad you will be posting throught out the now very long summer.

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  23. J21
    April 23, 2012

    Well, there’s a reason that Drance and the other statheads called this once in advance, after all:

    (1) The Canucks had struggled through much of the second half of the season (and the first, for that matter), and pretty much everyone acknowledged they were not as good as their record. Few, for some reason, acknowledged the team was noticeably better last year, but they were. Like, all year long.

    (2) The Kings, particularly after swapping out Jack Johnson for Jeff Carter, were not the weakest playoff team in the West. Their slow start put them in that position, but I think everyone also realized that this was not the best opponent the Canucks could have come across.

    (3) All the underlying metrics suggested that the Kings held the advantage. This is not farfetched when you consider the above two points and the fact that the Canucks play in a substantially weaker division.

    (4) Duncan Keith. We saw that the Canucks are a different team with Daniel in the lineup. It’s not even about scoring depth as such, but about how much the lines get messed up if you take out one of the twins. Henrik-Kassian-Raymond, or whatever other incarnations we saw, is a first line on no NHL team. It’s still amazing that a mistimed hit by Raffi Torres gets 25-to-life, and an intentional, malicious attempt to injure by a guy who does have a history, in spite of Shanahan’s logic, gets him a short rest while his team’s playoff position is already settled.

    (5) In a small sample size, (a) the bounces do not even out, (b) health, fatigue and luck have a disproportionately huge effect,and (c) individual mistakes have much greater ramifications. There is a reason “upsets” happen all the time, especially in a league where only good teams now make the playoffs, and the salary cap ensures that there are negligible differences among them.

    Anyone who wants to “trade Edler” because he looked poor for 1.13% of his NHL career, or thinks players “don’t want it enough” or suffer from the wrong nationality and therefore “can’t win” or ignores the fact of all those other good playoff teams in determining who could have won the Cup if they had “only showed up” should never be entrusted with important decisions.

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    • peanutflower
      April 23, 2012

      if i could vote you up a hundred times on this i would do it!

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      • J21
        April 23, 2012

        You actually can — just hit refresh.

        :P

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    • Nee
      April 23, 2012

      Great post. You’re right about the underlying numbers not being in our favour. Still hurts though. : (

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  24. Alison
    April 23, 2012

    The only solace I can take from this year’s loss is that I don’t have to watch PJ Stock babble on about nonsense in the intermission. It only got watchable when they brought in guest hosts and he was shut down. Not impressed with HNIC coverage but what else is new. Does this mean now that this series is over their pay is cut by 1/2 becausee they don’t have our games? In the theme of Richard Nixon “you won’t have the Canucks to push around anymore”. Small consolation.

    I will miss our Nucks but I will miss your uplifting, insightful, honest reporting just as much. Awesome first year boys!

    Still love our team!

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    • hockeyispretty
      April 23, 2012

      Is he that guy that makes one think of a yippy little dog? I`m not sure how everyone else knows the names of all the commentators, since they`re not written up, but considering the quality of what they say, I reckon most of their names aren`t worth knowing. ;)

      Those PITB guys: the only names in hockey reporting worth knowing.

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      • peanutflower
        April 23, 2012

        he’s the one with all the teeth.

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  25. BeCanucks
    April 23, 2012

    Thanks PitB!

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  26. VanFan85
    April 23, 2012

    Well look on the bright side, maybe now ownership will fire that useless player agent-turned-gm who has been nothing but a failure since he arrived and a new GM who actually knows a thing or two about player talent will come in and reduce this core to rubble. While he is at it he will fire the most successful coach in franchise history and one of the most successful coaches in the NHLthe passed 4 seasons because he has clearly lost this team and isnt driving the bus any longer. This new GM will trade a way the best goaltender in franchise history, trade away one of the best 2-way centers in the league because he had an off year, and trade away one one of the most complete players on the team because – despite scoring some of the biggest goals in franchise history – he bites, pulls hair, and takes the occasional dive. Oh yeah and trade that self-proclaimed “uselss plug defenceman” because he is just too arrogant for his own good. And all this to please the rest of Canada and build a team that a nation can rally behind…..

    Priority #1: Its clear Kesler is no longer a playmaking center and two selfish players like Booth and Kesler need a playmaker.

    Priortity #2: AV is not a 4th line coach to begin with – he hates playing the 4th line and he really hates playing the 4th line when they are getting pushed around and skated around. kassian is not being used in the capacity that he can be and should not be pigeon hole’d on the 4th line. I’ll give him the benfit of the doubt he has been part of this team for only a couple of months. Give him some time to earn AV’s trust. The rest of our 4th liners though (and as much as I hate to say it Manny too. 3M for a faceoff specialist is too much) need to be purged.

    Our Defence is still pretty sound but made too many costly errors down the stretch. I thought Ballard played excellent since his return and he plays well with Tanev. He will probably get a shot at the top-4 next year with Edler unless Vancouver makes a free agent splash (Weber or Suter). If Ballard cant crack the top 4 then he will need ot be moved to free up the 4.2 Million in salary – or maybe he gets moved so Vancouver can make a free agent splash. Cart before the horse?

    And of course there is a big decision to make going forward with regards to Goaltending. Everybody has jumped on the Schnieder bandwagon and its clear he COULD be a much better goalie than Luongo however Schnieder has won a grand total of ONE playoff game in his career, and once the media spotlight is on him in Vancouver as #1 goalie he may crack under the pressure as every goalie since Kirk McLean has. Schnieders value is now sky high and Vancouver will certainly be offered the farm for him. I certainly dont envy Gilles and the decision he has to make.

    I still think this core is good enough to win but they need to find some real character players to give this team an identity. They have tried to emulate the Wings, they have tried and I believe are trying to go back to emulating the 2007 Ducks. Instead of trying to emulate everyones elses success why not create our own style, our own personality, and forge our own way to winning? I think that should be the biggest priorty. Stop trying to emulate other teams success and try and build our own character and forge our own style. And of course – try and get a little bigger.

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  27. Steveston Mark
    April 23, 2012

    Even if the Canucks season did not deliver as expected, PITB certainly did. When the “big boys” of Vancouver’s hockey media regurgitated the same-old same-old, you guys rolled out some great research, awesome “Breakdowning”, amusing (and, at times, borderline disturbing) comics, and always reliable IWTG.
    A couple of random thoughts:
    I can’t help but think that the short off-season impacted the team, in some way. A lot of times this year, they looked to be outworked, and watching the Bruins, it seems to afflict them as well. Hopefully, this won’t be the case next season.

    I suppose we’ll start hearing about the “hidden injuries” from the past 5 games soon, and I can only hope that they will somehow partially explain the drop-off in play of several of our key players.

    The Kings need to send flowers, chocolates and a thank-you Starbucks gift card to Duncan Keith. (yeah, sour grapes, but who cares?)

    I’ll be cheering for the Caps on Wednesday.

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  28. Britt
    April 23, 2012

    Thanks boys for a great season of insight as I’m officially a Bulis addict now. While I need a day or two to digest what has happened here, I’m glad you can wrap your mind around this debocle enough to comment on it acurately; I’ll reserve judgement until the shock wears off.

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  29. John in Marpole
    April 23, 2012

    Wow. Bummer. Over way too soon for my liking…

    So, can we look forward to a summer of IWTG coverage of the WLA..?

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  30. rvtBC
    April 23, 2012

    Faced yet again with utter dissappointment (albeit not unexpected given the hole and not as bad as last year!), I’m putting on the rose-coloured glasses for a change.

    I found it hard this year to get into things 100% from the get-go as, I think, the Canucks might have as well. Stanley Cup mailaise? Maybe. But this early loss surely will cure that for next season. I’m getting geared up for it already (how sick is that?).

    This should be an interesting off season (again).
    a) Goalie connundrum – Schneids’ stock has never been higher? Yield better assets? Or will Gillis test the waters to see if Luongo (unjustly vilified throughout the last couple of years) wants a change of scenery.

    b) Will Salo ‘balls of steel’ return again? How about Manny (is being a presence in the dressing room and taking defensive zone face offs enough)?

    c) Will anyone take Raymond, for anything?

    d) What about the youth in the Wolves – will any of them really (finally) have a bona fide chance to make the team if holes in the roster open up?

    e) Will AV get called to task for some bizarre changes to line pairings? Does that help explain why Edler so completely fell apart and why Hammer tried to rush the puck up the ice vs. looking for the safe pass to his regular partner Bieska (oh, wait, he wasn’t on the ice then; that was Salo)? Maybe injury info will come to light otherwise AV makes me scratch my head.

    So there’s lots to look forward to this summer and, being the positive guy I am trying so hard to be, I’ll look forward to checking daily with PITB to get my Canucks’ fix; this is the only routinely, quality site for Canucks’ fans.

    (Ah, there’s always, always, next year!)

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  31. Chicky
    April 23, 2012

    Sad they lost, regardless though, PITB always made a great read through the season! Thanks guys. I will say, however, I’m totally ready for a break from HNIC and the rest of Vancouver Media bitching on the team.

    I have faith, and I’m kind of relieved about the loss, in the sense that i would much rather have Danny completely rested and healthy from his concussion, than wince every time he took a hit. I’m soft that way. i’m ok with it.

    Here’s to 2012/2013! Because I roll this way, I’ll be cheering on Canada’s last team standing. Go Ottawa!

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    • J21 (@Jyrki21 on Twitter)
      April 23, 2012

      The Ottawa fans — the younger ones, at least — are as vicious as the rest of the anti-Canuck hysterical haters, for the record. Not all of them, obviously, but there isn’t much reciprocity from them on a whole (even if I agreed with supporting other Canadian teams, which I think is absurd).

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    • J21 (@Jyrki21)
      April 23, 2012

      Though I certainly don’t endorse the “cheering for Canadian teams” thing anyway, if it’s not already clear, Vancouver gets no reciprocity from the rest of the country on this, and Ottawa is no exception. The fans here — at least the younger ones — have been as disdainful and hysterical about the Canucks as anybody else.

      The less Internet-savvy ones are a bit of a different story, since they just see “The Americans!” under every bed.

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  32. SteveB
    April 23, 2012

    My morning (and right now, mourning) post-game ritual is to brew a pot of strong black coffee and read IWTG.

    It helps me get over the depression of losses and appreciate the wins even more.

    PITB is one of the very few things that I read on the Internet that consistently makes me feel enriched by the experience.

    Thank you.

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  33. Frank
    April 23, 2012

    Thanks PITB for a great season. And thanks Canucks for a great season too! Get some well deserved rest and come back stronger!

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  34. CanuckFanInSF
    April 23, 2012

    I love you guys. Thanks for being so entertaining – as always – this season, not only in your IWTG posts, but also in Twitter. Your self-deprecating ways are much appreciated by a fellow self-deprecater… (did not sound right)

    By the way, whoever won that Salo is your Pal-o contest?

    *snickers*

    You too, fellow Bulies! Shout out to Zach Morris, Peanutflower, Chris the Curmudgeon, Canuck in Oz to name a few – your responses are almost always awesome. :) I’m sure I am forgetting more names….. *orchestral music starts to rise and drown out speech*

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    • Chris the Curmudgeon
      April 24, 2012

      You’re the best, fellow Bay Area Canucks fan. Let’s all keep it real (and in my case, grumpy) in the offseason and enjoy a 2013 Cup win for our boys.

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      • CanuckFanInSF
        April 24, 2012

        I’m going to catch a post-season game or two when they play the Sharks. God. Is it September yet?

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      • Chris the Curmudgeon
        April 24, 2012

        I’m assuming you mean “pre-season”. I had totally been hoping they would play in the 1st round so I could get on down for the SJ games. Sadly, this is going to be a long summer. At least the SF Giants look good.

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  35. Nee
    April 23, 2012

    “That makes me feel way better about having to wait nearly six months for meaningful Canucks hockey.”

    Well actually, it’s more like 12 motnhs until meaningful hockey.

    /sobs

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  36. Andre
    April 23, 2012

    No poem.
    Too sad for poetry.
    Just want bittersweet sorrow to sooth my pain
    Tenderly.

    You guys have been terrific:
    Daniel, Harrison, and all the regulars on this forum.

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  37. cathylu
    April 23, 2012

    Well, the season ends with a whimper instead of a bang. I’m sad but already looking forward to next season. These playoffs aren’t really going as expected. Helene Elliott, the hockey writer for the L.A. Times, predicted Canucks in 6, Pittsburgh in 7, Blackhawks in 6, and Bruins in 6, so I guess no-one has a crystal ball. This is one of the only times I’m glad I live in the L.A. area – the L.A. Times sports section has only one article about the game today, where I would guess the Sun and Province have multiple sad articles. Many, many thanks to PITB – I love you guys! I will be reading your posts all summer.

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  38. Andrea Boudrias' Jock
    April 23, 2012

    I’ll pile on.
    Thanks PITB. Part of what makes being a Canucks fan a pain in the arse is trying to read a thread of postings that just make you want to NOT read (from which spring illiteracy) OR vomit (in the, sorry, but, MSM) – and this space is (this far), pretty much vomit free. Daniel and Harrison and Thomas think it through without the pack mentality and offer a different position, and people posting here a. have a sense of humour b. seem not all to be descended from Cro-magnon, man; and c. offer informed and measured thoughts. And d. people call out BS without going all MMA on each other.

    And the guy slapping his self silly was exactly what I needed with MY coffee this morning. Not that I felt that way – I didn’t – but it made me and my girlfriend laugh. The laughing helps…(mock dramatical pathos).

    My only real addition to this today: for whatever reason, team could not score. There were many problems. But last year, you’d just have people stepping up with the odd potted contribution. Have not seen the final breakdown of points/goals: but it must be pretty slim. Sedins and then not much else. Those guys, though, have they not now satisfied all the criticism? It was a freaking JOY to see those two operate in the past two games.

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  39. B's fan loving the misery
    April 23, 2012

    PITB – love the blog.

    Playoff officiating has been terrible the last two years. Refs need to start calling all the interference and hooking that they did all season, then send both players off the ice when there’s pushing & shoving after the whistle. They can set the tone in the first period and clean up each game that way.

    Glad Shanny finally grew a pair and laid the hammer on Torres, Keith should’ve gotten at least 15 games for his elbow, but better late than never.

    You guys need to trade Schnieder for a stay at home D-man. It’s the only way to get rid of the goalie controversy. As many people pointed out, Bobby Lou was not the problem this year and his contract (and NTC) make him untradable.

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    • peanutflower
      April 23, 2012

      I’m not thinking defence is the problem…

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      • hockeyispretty
        April 23, 2012

        In games 1 and 2, I thought defence was the problem.

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    • hockeyispretty
      April 23, 2012

      Hi B`s fan! Thx for visiting. Some people over here hope the B`s lose the first round. Not me… I hope they go to, oh, say, game 6 of the finals and no further! ;)

      Seriously, agree with you about all the officiating comments. They would only need to crack down with consistency for a few games until everyone`s playing style would adjust. I think the players themselves would really prefer to have a very clear idea of what`s allowed and what isn`t, and what the penalty is likely to be. It`s nice to have an edge to playoffs, but playoff hockey looks really ragged by the 3rd series and the finals. I`d prefer to see an elite player still well enough to flash those skills around, not crosschecked into one massive bruise or worse.

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      • B's fan loving the misery
        April 24, 2012

        I thought the B’s were lucky as heck winning the Cup last year (no Crosby, Philly with no goalie, Washington with no goalie, three game seven wins). If they had lost to Montreal in round 1 last year, the fans would’ve been screaming to blow up the team.

        Hopefully, they can borrow some Luck of the Irish from the Celtics and make it to the Finals, but Philly is looking too good and too deep.

        I agree that the players would adjust if the refs called a real game. Hopefully it would lead to the stars in this league playing in the playoffs without injuries that require surgery.

        Let us know if you want to trade Kessler or Schneider. Hodgson was looking good during Buffalo’s push to make the playoffs.

        AV should’ve been fired last year for not starting Schneider in Game 6 of the Finals in Boston. If he can use him against Chicago, then why not in Game 6? He could’ve given all the baloney reasons he gave this year.

        Actually, now that I think of it, maybe AV and Bobby Lou should both go to Montreal. You guys can get Scott Gomez and Carey Price in return.
        What do you think?

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  40. Andrea Boudrias' Jock
    April 23, 2012

    Aaaaagh.
    I just got five comments down in the “What do you think” area after Iain Macintyre’s article (which was fine BTW), and the cesspool of stupidity drove me away. OMG. Seriously: THANK YOU PITB !!! Just can’t do the trolling, angry, hurl insults thing. I predict a riot.

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  41. bea
    April 23, 2012

    Thanks to the Canucks for a great season. There’s always next year.
    To win the game is great. To play the game is greater. But to love the
    game is the greatest of all. I’ll enjoy watching the rest of the playoffs
    but it won’t be as much fun without the Canucks.
    Have a great summer.
    Thanks PITB.

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  42. Rituro
    April 23, 2012

    Thank you for being here, PITB. Nowhere did I ever think my loves of nerdy culture references and the Canucks would cross over; good thing you three (four, if we count Chloe?) proved me wrong.

    Can’t wait for the first IWTG of the pre-season! In the meantime, my PVR’s sports schedule is one show lighter for a few months.

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  43. akidd
    April 23, 2012

    sooo…oh…oooh. that’s it then. i think the sami summed it up best when he conceded that the canucks weren’t playing their best hockey for THE LAST HALF OF THE SEASON. I’d hoped it wasn’t so, that they were resting, working on stuff , gonna show us the good stuff once the games mattered etc. there are lots of reasons perhaps but the conclusion is that this team just wasn’t as good as last year.

    scf hangover? most assuredly. hip, back and back surgery for kesler, edler and raymond. well that too. i’ve heard that it takes a full year for elite athletes to return to form after surgery(both physically and then mentally.) kesler in particular clearly wasn’t %100 or even 90% yet. was it edler’s problem too? perhaps. raymond’s? maybe too. it’s not a blanket excuse but it can’t be overlooked either as those 3 players clearly didn’t have good years.

    it probably wasn’t the canucks year, no matter what. beating the kings, preds, blues? in consecutive series is a tall order. especially for a team like the canucks which is more flash and dash than grit and grind. vs the sharks, hawks and wings things would have been more promising. and definitely more entertaining.

    so i could go into the coho trade and how gillis wrongly estimated the canucks scoring punch. and didn’t bring back the necessary goals for this year. or how somehow the top-four dmen only had one guy(hamhuis) who played like a true top-four. bieksa definitely regressed. edler too. and love salo but probably at his age he shouldn’t have been relied on to play such a big role.

    there were lots of holes on this team. gallagher summed the year up pretty well in his article last night. and times are changing. it looks like any sc champ is going to have to be able to beat teams like the preds. and teams like the wings and hawks might be yesterday’s hockey, which is an incredibly sad turn of affairs imo.

    there are a lot questions for the off-season. AV was clearly very upset last night. does he want to return? has he had enough? i think that is the number one issue for the off-season. what kind of system will next year’s canucks play? i hope they don’t choose a’sutter’ or ‘hitchcock’ or ‘trotz’ style of hockey. i really, really hope they don’t. winning is not worth it.

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  44. sarah
    April 23, 2012

    I’m so discouraged at the thought of no more Canucks hockey until October. Can everything that is going to happen during the Off Season just happen now so that we can discuss it? Is that too much to ask?

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  45. akidd
    April 23, 2012

    we got beat by the flames again. dam those workboots and hardhats. and that forecheck. and kipper. our only hope is for sutter to take over the gm duties too. ba dum dum…a little weak smack…sigh….

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  46. Fitzy
    April 24, 2012

    I take you, PITB, to be my favourite Canucks blog, to read and to cherish from this day forward, in good games and in bad, for Luongos or Schneiders, in healthy lineups or scratches, until death do us part.

    Thanks for keeping us all afloat this season, regardless of the outcome! Is it September yet?

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  47. bergberg
    April 24, 2012

    Well it took me till today to bring myself to read this post. Not that I’m really that upset, to be honest. These guys have battled hard the last couple years, and are probably due for a much needed break. As is my blood pressure. We will regroup, and come back strong next year. That is our year. I just know it. ;)

    Was a bit disappointed to find the first comment on this post was the very thing I was dreading seeing. Goaltender controversy. I read a bit father till I got the Hodgson/Kassian stuff and I couldn’t read any further. I think I will have to avoid most media outlets for the summer to prevent Canuck Fan Criticism over-exposure. PITB will be my lone exception to keep up on Canuck related matters. Thanks for everything you two (and sometimes three)!

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  48. obituary mambo
    April 23, 2012

    My guess would be that the poster voted it up him/herself.

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  49. hockeyispretty
    April 23, 2012

    No comments, guys! Don`t feed the trolls and maybe they go away. Downvote only if you must, but they want a reaction! :)

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  50. obituary mambo
    April 23, 2012

    I agree that it’s silly to root for a team based upon which side of the border it falls on. Doing so seems rather arbitrary to me, especially seeing that there isn’t one team in the league that doesn’t have a predominantly Canadian roster. Cheer for the team that will give you the chance to see the best game. I watched all six of the Flyers 1st round games and most of them were a ton of fun (game 4 — the one the Pens won 10-3 — was ridiculous, especially on the goal tending front; any Canucks fan who complains about our embarrassment of riches in the department should be made to watch the spectacle put on by Philly’s combo that night. Wowza — and not in the good way). Claude Giroux is ridiculously talented, and Hartnell, Briere, Schenn, Simmonds, some guy named Jagr and many others are just a joy to watch. With that in mind, I’ll be rooting for the Flyers. Though I certainly hope the Sens win their series.

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