Friday, October 20, 2006

Beating The Blues

Some questions going into tonight's game against the St. Louis Blues:

Can the Canucks put last season's Blues behind? (Jason Botchford, Vancouver Province)

Markus Naslund fully understands the dear price the Vancouver Canucks paid for getting swept in embarrassing fashion by the St. Louis Blues last year.

He's determined not to let it happen again, beginning tonight.

"It ruined our playoff chances," Naslund said. "I think we took them lightly last year and it cost us the season."
What if the Canucks took the Blues seriously last year? (Brad Ziemer, Vancouver Sun)

What if the Vancouver Canucks hadn't got swept by the St. Louis Blues, the worst team in the Western Conference, last season?

What if the Canucks had managed even a split of their four games with the Blues?

Let's see, they missed the playoffs by three points, so if they had earned four points off the Blues they would have been the No. 8 seed in the West and gone all the way to the Stanley Cup final instead of the Edmonton Oilers.
Can Brendan Morrison start putting the puck in the net? (Ed Willes, Vancouver Province)

As a former economics major at Michigan, Brendan Morrison is aware these numbers don't add up: $3.2 million and one goal and one assist after seven games.

But there are far deeper implications to Morrison's slow start for the Canucks this season and, again, they don't require any explanation to the eight-year veteran.

In the Canucks' current configuration, Morrison is expected to be the key figure on a second scoring line. To date, that line -- with Jan Bulis and a revolving cast on the other wing -- has produced exactly two goals this season, both on the power play.
Can the rest of the team? (Brad Ziemer, Vancouver Sun)

"Some of them are in major offensive funks," Vigneault said Wednesday, which was a travel day for the Canucks. "Why does Matt Cooke not have a point? Why does [Jan] Bulis only have one assist and Mo [Brendan Morrison] et cetera, et cetera.

"I think we have some guys who have offensive capabilities, but for some reason so far it's just not going their way. We're going to stick with them and help them try to get out of it."

The Canuck forwards have accumulated 35 points so far this season, 22 of which have come from the trio of Markus Naslund and the Sedin twins.
Who's playing with who? (Brad Ziemer, Vancouver Sun)

Vigneault fiddled with his bottom three lines on Thursday, but said that could change again before tonight's game against the Blues.

He had Marc Chouinard between Jan Bulis and Matt Cooke. That struggling trio has only one point among them this season. Brendan Morrison centred Taylor Pyatt and Ryan Kesler, while Josh Green skated with Trevor Linden and Alex Burrows. Tommi Santala was the odd man out and figures to be a scratch tonight.
Puck drop is at 5 PM. TV broadcast is on Sportsnet Pacific; Canucks radio play-by-play is on TEAM 1040.

Comments/Questions: Feel free to post in the comments section or email me at gocanucksgo10 (at) hotmail (dot) com.

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posted by J.J. Guerrero, 6:16 AM


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