Fixing the power play: analyzing what has worked for the Canucks this season

It’s been obvious for a long time: the Canucks’ power play stinks. The halcyon days of the Canucks having the one of the best power plays in the league are gone. The special teams that allowed the team to adopt a zen philosophy, punishing teams, not with their fists, but with goals on the man advantage are not so special any more.

In order to identify what’s gone wrong with the power play, I’m going to look at what’s gone right. In order to see how the Canucks could be more successful on the power play, we can look at how they have been successful by looking at all of the power play goals they’ve scored this season. Regrettably, this won’t take very long.

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Photoshop gallery: Brad Marchand kisses invisible Cup

Brad Marchand is an idiot.

Now, to be fair, every team has guys like this, and they can be very effective and valuable. As I said yesterday on Boston radio, if Marchand was our idiot, to borrow a turn of phrase from Tom Sestito, we’d be more than happy to tolerate him. But he’s not. He’s very, very not.

As such, rather than tolerating, or worse, appreciating him, we at Pass it to Bulis encourage you to join us in mocking the Boston Bruins’ winger that’s become the face of the Bruins/Canucks rivalry (meaning the rivalry has a comically gigantic nose).

Above is a photo taken back on December 14, 2013, when Marchand’s Bruins visited Vancouver for the first time since they hoisted the Stanley Cup there in June of 2011. Thinking perhaps we might have forgotten, because he’s dumb and he forgets obvious things, like how to spell “champion”, Marchand mimed a Cup lift-and-kiss — and then he forgot he did it, because, as mentioned, he’s dumb, so he did it a second time.

Fortunately, pulling the same move twice gave Jeff Vinnick two opportunities to capture it perfectly for maximum photoshoppability, and the second time around, he definitely did. With the Canucks and Bruins set to go again Tuesday night, it is time to let the shops flow!

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Stick in Link: Tortorella returns with a vengeance; Eddie Lack, best rookie goalie?

It’s time for “Stick in Link”, the feature where we just plug in a bunch of stuff written by others! Featuring a smattering of links from around the Smylosphere and beyond every Tuesday and Thursday. Warning: our links are so hyper, they change colour when exposed to heat. (Have something for us to share in the next edition? E-mail us at, tweet us @passittobulis, or just come over and write your link on a pad of paper, I guess.)

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I Watched This Game: Canucks at Detroit Red Wings, February 3, 2014

All the losing the Canucks have been doing this season would be a lot more palatable if they were losing in a more entertaining fashion. Like, what if they did a song-and-dance number during each power play instead of trying to score? We’d likely end up with the same result — no power play goals — but with better choreography and more jazz hands.

Alternatively, the Canucks could replace Jannik Hansen with his Muppet doppelgänger, Beaker, and spend the entire game exploding, shrinking, deflating, and electrocuting him. Or Hansen can just start cross-checking referees again. Either would be more entertaining than seeing Hansen constantly miss the net on scoring chances.

Or, best of all, they could kill two birds with one stone and go the Mighty Ducks route: sign a figure skater or two — Johnny Weir retired a couple months ago — who could show off some flashy, entertaining moves, thereby distracting the opposition and allowing the Canucks to easily score.

Sadly, their was no entertainment to be had in this game. It was the Superbabies: Baby Geniuses 2 of hockey games. I should have gone to Rotten Tomatoes to check the reviews before I watched this game.

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