I Watched This Game: Canucks vs Phoenix Coyotes, April 8, 2013

The Canucks have been in a lot of low-scoring games lately, but this one felt different. Prior games have been snoozefests — actually, scratch that. A snoozefest sounds amazing. Think about it: an entire festival dedicated to sleeping? That’s a yes. Sleep is fantastic. Snoozefest is the wrong word. But the prior games have been mundane.

This one wasn’t. The Canucks dominated the Coyotes for the majority of the night, peppering Mike Smith like he was a Caesar salad and they were the waiter at an Olive Garden. With a lesser goaltender in the opposition end, this might have been a blowout. But Smith kept the Coyotes close. By the end of the night, Phoenix had come to rely on him so thoroughly that, when he left the goal for the extra attacker, they got confused and scared and scored on themselves. Related: I watched this game.

Continue Reading —›
Finding facts and dispelling myths about new Canuck Derek Roy

Derek Roy has played just two games with the Vancouver Canucks to date, so it’s safe to say that we’re still in the process of getting to know him. There’s plenty yet to learn about the diminutive centre, and plenty of rumours about his on and off-ice activities to sort through.

But while we could figure it all out over time, we don’t have the luxury of time here at PITB. We have an annual bandwagon cheat sheet to prepare.

Thankfully, Roy has a lot of history in the NHL already. He played seven years in Buffalo, for instance. That in mind, we reached out to Sabres blog Die By the Blade in an effort to determine what’s true about Roy and what isn’t.

Continue Reading —›
New Van Fan, Episode 10: Trade deadline

As we’ve learned throughout this web series, Dan is a dedicated fan and he’s recruited Andreas into some of the sillier excesses of being a Canucks fan. One of those sillier excesses we know all too well here at PITB: waking up far too early on trade deadline day.

Trade deadline coverage starts at 8:00 AM Eastern on TSN and Sportsnet, which sounds perfectly reasonable until you realize that translates to 5:00 AM Pacific and that generally no trades happen until at least 10:30 AM Eastern. The odds of the Canucks making a trade anywhere near 5:00 AM are so small that they are currently being scouted by the Montreal Canadiens.

And yet, every trade deadline day, Canucks fans set their alarms to wake up absurdly early and watch their team not do anything for 7 hours. The latest episode of New Van Fan captures the plight of Canucks fans perfectly, as Dan and Andreas’s well-intentioned plans to follow the trade deadline all day long devolve into discussions of obscure, fish-based super powers, Wyshynski’s pants, imaginary Mario Kart games, and impromptu, improvised songwriting. It’s about ten times more entertaining than the actual trade deadline.

Continue Reading —›
Sixteen Canuck milestones that may be reached before the end of the season

You can blame our fingers for our obsession with big, round numbers. Our limited digits gave rise to the base-10 numeral system, leading humans to see special significance to numbers divisible by 10. We see this particularly in hockey: we describe forwards as 20-goal scorers or 30-goal scorers, attach particular import to scoring 50 goals in a season (particularly if they’re tallied within 50 games), and award players that reach 1000 games played with a silver stick.

If only we were born with 6 fingers on each hand, we could have had the far more mathematically satisfying base-12 and have the far more exclusive group of players that reached a dozen-dozen-dozen (1728) games played: Gordie Howe, Mark Messier, and Ron Francis. Actually, never mind: any numbering system that would accord Mark Messier special honour is fundamentally flawed.

In the last two games, two Canucks have reached significant milestones: against the Edmonton Oilers on Thursday, Kevin Bieksa recorded his 200th career point when he opened the scoring on the powerplay. It was, incidentally, also his 10th career game-winning goal. Then, against the Calgary Flames on Saturday, Henrik Sedin recorded his 600th career assist on Alex Burrow’s gamewinner.

Personally, I had no idea these milestones were coming up for either player; the media guide will often mention them when they’re coming close, but for those of us not in the press box, we tend to only find out after the fact when the play-by-play crew fills us in.

With that in mind, here are 16 upcoming Canucks milestones, both those that come divisible by 10 and those that are franchise specific, that might come in the final 10 games of the season. Yes, 16. It’s not divisible by 10. Deal with it.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger... Continue Reading —›