Trailing by a goal and facing elimination heading into the third period, Ryan Kesler made it very clear what the Vancouver Canucks needed to do to keep their scant playoff hopes alive. “We just got to go out,” he told Farhan Lalji, all fiery determination and temerity, “and compete like bastards.”
Now, admittedly, I’m not entirely sure how a bastard competes. Did he mean the Jon Snow type of bastard? Or the Inglourious, Nazi-killing type of basterd? Personally, I would have appreciated Kesler spelling it out loud instead of just saying it.
Either way, the Canucks did indeed come out in the third period like a group of lovechildren and, by the eleven-minute mark, they had turned a one-goal deficit into a one-goal lead. Unfortunately, Kesler’s speech had also inspired the officials to officiate like bastards. Two illegitimate powerplay goals against later, the Vancouver Canucks were eliminated. For the last time in 2013, I watched this game.Continue Reading —›
Alain Vigneault coached the Vancouver Canucks to a Presidents’ trophy and Stanley Cup Final appearance in 2010-11, but his follow-up season was about on par with Season 3 of Lost. I mean, it was still the same show as last year, and it still had its high points — the second consecutive Presidents’ Trophy, the flashforwards — but all things considered, it was messy, confusing, and decidedly underwhelming.
And, unlike the writers of Season 3 of Lost, Vigneault’s Canucks were unable to flip the switch towards the end. As a result, a large segment of the Vancouver fan populace demanded that he be fired.
That was unreasonable. The Canucks were still an excellent team, they won the regular-season for the second year in a row, and they got bounced by an LA Kings group that got hot at just the right time and made minced meat of every other opponent they faced after Vancouver. It was a disappointingly quick ouster, to be certain, but Vigneault didn’t deserve to lose his job over it.
When he didn’t, with the club announcing a two-year contract extension for him, those that disagreed turned up the vitriol. The result: this entire season has been filtered through the lens of mounting fireable offences for Alain Vigneault, and we’re not talking about substantive criticism, we’re talking about childish hostility.Continue Reading —›
Roberto Luongo showed a great deal of patience this season amidst all the drama of the soap opera in Vancouver’s crease, and yes, it is a soap opera. Recently, Thomas Drance suggested that its long, long, long running time made it more epic than soap, but clearly, the dude needs to brush up on his daytime dramas. “The Young and the Restless” has been running since February 4, 1980, and the feud between Jill Foster Abbott and Katherine Chancellor has been going on for pretty much that entire time.
A rivalry that never seems to end? That sounds about right for this analogy.
Anyway. Like I was saying, apart from a few moments where he seemed on the verge of flipping a table — like, say, just after the trade deadline, which is likely why the Canucks made him do that presser standing up with no table in sight — Luongo has shown some remarkable serenity in the face of a decidedly unserene situation.
But he won’t be doing that again. Funny Bob has no intention of sticking around for another season of The Young Goalie and the Restless Goalie, and in case that wasn’t entirely clear, his Vancouver condo is for sale.Continue Reading —›
Friday night’s Game 2 between the Canucks and the San Jose Sharks put Vancouver hockey fans through the wringer. Through two periods, it looked like we were witnessing yet another game in which the Canucks wouldn’t be scoring. Another disappointing outcome seemed inevitable. You could forgive any fan who felt that he had seen this game before and decided by about the second intermission that there wasn’t going to be much to see in the third.
But then Ryan Kesler came to life, scoring early in the final frame on a blistering slap shot from the point. Suddenly the disbelieving fans were forced to change their tune (albeit briefly). And one fan was forced to change his pizza order:Continue Reading —›
We’ve seen our fair share of fan videos here at Pass it to Bulis. We’ve seen singer/songwriters write songs and sing them, as is their modus operandi. We’ve seen rappers lay down tracks in support of the team. We’ve seen amateur filmmakers like David McKay blow us away with their vision and execution.
But, until today, we had never seen an acrobat paint himself in Canucks colours and scale a pole outside of Rogers Arena in support of the home team. This may be strangest and most incredible Canucks fan video you’ll ever see:Continue Reading —›
You’d think think San Jose Sharks’ supporters would have struggled to find much to get upset about during Wednesday night’s Game 1. After all, when your team outplays the Canucks in 2 of 3 periods, when the powerplay looks like a lethal weapon, and when the Sharks come away from their 2013 postseason debut with a victory, what’s there to complain about?
The green men, apparently.
If you were watching the American feed of this game, you were treated to CSN Bay Area announcers Drew Remenda and Randy Hahn ripping Force and Sully pretty fiercely. Glenn Healy’s got nothing on this exchange:Continue Reading —›
The playoffs didn’t exactly open the way that the Canucks hoped they would. What they wanted, and what most in Vancouver wanted, I think, was for the Canucks to kick off the 2013 postseason with 16 consecutive wins. Instead, they started with one loss, meaning it will take them 17 games at least to win the Stanley Cup. Nuts. So close.
What went wrong in this one? Nothing whatsoever, if you completely discount the 3rd period, where everything went wrong. If the game were 20 minutes (and it started after a 20 minute warm-up period) the Canucks win this game. Unfortunately, playing 60 minutes is one of the rules of NHL hockey — even in the playoffs, when a bunch of other rules are abandoned — so the Canucks lost this game. And I watched this game.Continue Reading —›
It’s time for part 2 of the Canucks bandwagon fan cheat sheet, the guide to bluffing your way through an evening with a group of actual, diehard Vancouver hockey fans. Don’t let yourself get caught thinking the Sedins are the same person. They only sort of are!
Yesterday, we went over management, the goaltenders, and the defence. Today we take you through the Canucks’ forward lines. Get a pen. You’ll want to write all of this on your hand.Continue Reading —›
Zack Kassian has looked pretty much ridiculous all season, but the playoffs are a time to step it up, and on Tuesday, the Kassquatch showed up to Canucks practice looking playoff ridiculous. Not only is he sure to have the team’s best beard, but he now proudly sports the team’s best haircut — a ratty playoff mullet that actually curls up in the back, because his hair is in a constant state of rebellion against his head.
After yesterday’s discussion about “hotness”, one might have been concerned that the Canucks were a team of pretty boys, too concerned about their looks to put it all on the line, but I would suggest that Zack Kassian singlehandedly breaks down that characterization. This dude is so unconcerned with his look that he’s bordering on something out of a Jim Henson movie already and the playoffs haven’t even begun yet.Continue Reading —›
On Monday, we talked streaking, investigating which members of the Canucks were hot, and who had gone cold. Mason Raymond? Cold as ice, unwilling to sacrifice. He has just one point, an assist, in his last six games. Tom Sestito? Hot streak. Blistering. Dude has scored in one consecutive game. That’s as hot as he gets.
But today we’re going to talk about a different kind of hotness: physical hotness. Like what sexy people have. Did you know the Canucks are the NHL’s hottest playoff team? Because they totally are.Continue Reading —›
We here at Pass it to Bulis are supporters of the bandwagon fan. We recognize that not everyone can devote the amount of time and energy that we do to the Canucks and understand that some people only start to tune in when the playoffs approach.
With that in mind, we have prepared the Bandwagon Fan Cheat Sheet for the past several years in order to help out bandwagon fans who haven’t been paying much attention to the Canucks until now. It’s full of helpful information about every Canuck on the roster, including their tendencies on the ice, their nicknames, and a bevy of inside jokes that you can pretend to understand when your friends, coworkers, and family bring them up.
This year, however, the regular season ended after 48 games, so we’re running a little behind schedule. So, without further ado, I leave you with part one of the 2013 Bandwagon Fans Cheat Sheet.Continue Reading —›
There are two things you can expect to see the moment the NHL playoffs begin: one, the Edmonton Oilers cleaning out their lockers and going home. Two, because of this, some non-genius in Edmonton will decide to take out his frustrations and make a desperate bid for postseason pageviews from a large fanbase still watching hockey come spring by writing a Vancouver Canucks hit piece.
It’s tradition. I suspect they may draw straws. Get the short one, and it’s your turn to blow some tiny thing out of proportion, point to it as evidence that the Canucks are the great evil, use the 2011 riot as supporting evidence, and then openly root not just for their failure, but also the return of Jesus, who will descend from the cloud and cast them into the lake of fire.
This year’s winner: Peter Adler of the Edmonton Journal, who has written — and this is the actual headline — Here’s Hoping the Unprofessional Vancouver Canucks Crash Out of the Playoffs.
It’s batcrap insane and amazing.Continue Reading —›
The Canucks played their last game of the regular-season last Monday (despite being scheduled for two more games after). Their next challenge: the 2013 postseason, which begins Wednesday night in Vancouver versus the San Jose Sharks.
Playoff hockey means a few things: more intensity, higher stakes, beards, and a ton of playoff pump-up videos uploaded to Youtube. So many. It’s crazy. Users upload an hour of video to Youtube per second. This weekend, it was mostly footage of Kevin Bieksa making his angry face.
Since we love a good pump-up video here at PITB, here are five of our favourites.Continue Reading —›
The Canucks closed out the 48-game 2013 regular season the same way it began: by surrendering seven goals in a humiliating loss. Now, granted, this one isn’t quite as concerning as the season-opener against the Anaheim Ducks, which featured the full Canucks lineup, save Ryan Kesler. This time around, the Canucks flipped the script, icing a lineup that featured Ryan Kesler and little else. Jason Garrison, Dan Hamhuis, Alex Edler, Alex Burrows, and Daniel Sedin all sat this one out.
So did Henrik Sedin, although not officially. The Canucks’ captain started this game between Steve Pinizzotto and Dale Weise, and we were excited to watch him spend the whole game there before demanding a trade to Buffalo, as one does after such deployment. But instead, Henrik just left the game. As it turned out, he was only dressed so as to protect his iron man streak, and once he had done what he needed with one shift, he promptly suited up and called it a night. Like Henrik Sedin, I watched this game.Continue Reading —›
With their loss to the Los Angeles Kings on Saturday night, the Sharks close out the 2013 season as the sixth seed in the Western Conference. This means a first-round playoff date with the third seed, your Vancouver Canucks.
We’ll have plenty of coverage leading up to this series (as well as during it), just as we always do, but for tonight, we would simply like to remind you of something.
This post originally appeared on May 13, 2011, in advance of the Canucks’ Western Conference Final series versus the Sharks two years ago. It was true then and it’s true now: the San Jose Sharks are bad.Continue Reading —›
In a sense, it’s been a long season. But in another sense (the literal sense), it’s been a short season, a whirlwind. It’s possible that you missed it all. But now the playoffs are here and we’d hate for you to be so far behind you can’t enjoy them. Here’s a quick review of the 2013 season.Continue Reading —›
Some housepets are total puckheads. Moko the African grey parrot is a vocal and unabashed Vancouver Canucks fan. And just try talking to Dave the cat when he’s watching his beloved Anaheim Ducks. He’ll give you the stinkeye.
Other pets have no time for the game, however, no matter how hard we try to sell them on its merits. Take Clifford, for instance, an adorable dachshund that is, by all accounts, a happy-go-lucky little delight. Watch him do laps around this apartment. It’s adorable.
But try to put a Canucks-themed dog jacket on Clifford and fun time is over.Continue Reading —›
For much of this season, the primary talking point about the Vancouver Canucks has been the soap opera in their crease, where they have the champagne problem of two number one goalies, and the actual problem of only being allowed to start one at a time.
As a result, it’s been a rough year for Roberto Luongo. The whole thing reached a zenith at the NHL trade deadline when nothing happened, which was, in and of itself, a pretty big happening. You’ll recall an emotional Luongo saying some fairly quotable things about his pernicious contract before taking a deep breath and resigning himself to spending the rest of the season as the backup.
And that’s where Season 1 of The Young Goalie and the Restless Goalie ended, with Season 2 scheduled for the instant the postseason comes to a close, because there couldn’t possibly be another twist in this saga until — hold on, what’s that now?Continue Reading —›
Earlier this morning at the other blog I write for, Greg Wyshynski asked an interesting question: Who are the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles for your team?
As you may know, the Turtles are a quartet. But what you may not know is that their four members fit into four basic archetypes. There’s the austere leader, the silly guy, the philosopher, and the bad boy. The same can be said of the Beatles, the cast of Seinfeld, the non-infant members of the Simpsons family, the Sweathogs, and almost any other popular quartet in popular culture.
“It’s like some essential human grouping pattern,” Linus Millberg says in Jonathan Lethem’s Fortress of Solitude.
Working out who on any given hockey club might fit into this pattern makes for a fun exercise, so we thought we’d bring it to you here at PITB. Who are the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles of the Canucks?Continue Reading —›
There’s a lot to take away from this game, but let’s begin this recap with something no one can EVER take away: with the win versus the Chicago Blackhwks, the Canucks clinched their fifth consecutive Northwest Division title! Five in a row, baby!
Say what you will about the division title. Sure, it’s as easy to get as your first Pokemon. But the Canucks were the 1956-1960 Montreal Canadiens of the Northwest Division: that’s a half-decade of pure, uncut domination. I watched the Canucks cement a mother-flipping dynasty when I watched this game.Continue Reading —›
Daniel Sedin scored the third and final Vancouver goal in the Canucks’ 3-1 victory over the Chicago Blackhawks, getting in behind the Blackhawks’ defence before beating Corey Crawford on a breakway.
The last man back for Chicago: Duncan Keith, who let the Canuck winger know he was right there with a slash just prior to Daniel’s shot.
Little was made of the slash at the time. That makes some sense, I guess. If an arm had gone up for a delayed penalty, it would have come right back down when Daniel scored anyhow.
It’s possible Keith was fully aware of that when he swung the lumber in the first place. Or maybe he was just trying to cause Daniel to slip up and lose control of the puck. I’m not going to pretend to know his intent. Better to just ask him, which is what the Team 1040′s Karen Thomson did after the game. Her reward: an earful of completely uncalled-for sexist rubbish.Continue Reading —›
Ryan Kesler and Derek Roy will be back on the same line again Monday versus the Chicago Blackhawks, but there are a few changes to the Canucks’ second line nonetheless. First of all, Chris Higgins returns to the lineup, and he’ll replace Jannik Hansen on the other wing. Second, Ryan Kesler and Derek Roy will trade spots, meaning that, unless Alain Vigneault has an eleventh hour change of heart (like he did last time), Roy will be the centre. Kesler will be reprising his long dormant role as a right-winger.
But now he has to try to remember what it’s like to play the wing, a position he hasn’t played since 2009. That’s a long time. He might need a refresher course.Continue Reading —›
The last time the Canucks were in the playoffs, things didn’t go so well. Poised to make like Janet Jackson and go deep, Vancouver’s first draw was an LA squad that had, unbeknownst to anyone, somehow managed to find the postseason settings and switch the difficulty to “easy”. As a result, the Canucks were hapless, and when they finally repossessed their haps, they were on the verge of elimination. Five games after they had begun, they were out.
That trauma in mind, you could understand why the Canucks might be reluctant to go back there, and why, with a chance to clinch a return to the postseason with a win over the Dallas Stars, they gave in to their fears in the third and descended into self-sabotage instead. They lost this game to the enemy within: themselves. Also Dallas. They lost to Dallas. I watched this game.Continue Reading —›
Spitballin’ (or Super Pass It To Bulis: All In, if you love adventurous acronymizing) is a feature that allows us to touch on a multitude of things really fast, because in the world of hockey, there are always lots of things to find and colour. Here are a few quick topics.Continue Reading —›
When the Vancouver Canucks debuted their Vancouver Millionaires jerseys back in March, we wondered aloud if the original plan had been to debut the historic duds versus the Ottawa Senators, the team the Millionaires defeated back in 1915 for Vancouver’s lone Stanley Cup.
No, we were told when asked (proving the worst thing you can ever do is ask), that had never been the plan.
That said, if the Canucks did want to sport their heritage jerseys versus the Senators, it would appear that next March will yield a golden opportunity. According to multiple reports, the league is planning to go from one outdoor game to six in 2013-14, with the sixth and final game in what’s being called a stadium series happening just next door to Rogers Arena in BC Place. Vancouver will obviously be one of the two teams. The other club: the Ottawa Senators, who have been sore about the way we stole Cyclone Taylor and then their Stanley Cup for 99 long years.
GRUDGE MATCH.Continue Reading —›