Monday, November 05, 2007

Canucks 4 Avalanche 3

The Canucks' 4-3 win over the Colorado Avalanche on Saturday night doesn't constitute a turnaround, but it's a start.

Against an Avalanche team that was off to a 6-0 start at home, their best in franchise history, they didn't roll over and play dead. In fact, the Canucks were aggresive. They went into the corners and finished their hits. They forced plays and made the Avs take penalties. And on the powerplay, they capitalized and scored two goals, their first two since the win in Washington.

With Salo, Bieksa and Krajicek out and Mike Weaver, Alex Edler and Luc Bourdon - and their combined 192 games of NHL experience - in the back end, the Canucks played perhaps their most complete and mistake-free game of the season. There was the odd gaffe - like the rush that led to the Avs' third goal with ten seconds left in the game - but for the most part, their defensive play was miles better than it was against Nashville.

But there were two things that really stood out for me in this win.

The first was that the Canucks went back to playing a simple game. They skated hard and skated together. When they got the puck, they moved it and moved it quickly. They took the puck to the net, crashed it and scored all four of their goals from right in front of Peter Budaj. It was like 2006-2007 all over again.

The second thing that stood out was something that was mentioned after the game. In a post-game interview, Roberto Luongo mentioned that Alain Vigneault called on his veterans and Louie and a few of the leaders got up and said something. Whatever they said, it worked.

In this week's episode of The Crazy Canucks podcast, I questioned whether or not the Canucks' leadership group can rally this team together in face of adversity. Obviously - and I know it's one game only - they could and they did.

About the game around the blogosphere:

Some pieces from the mainstream:
Next game:

Thursday night in Calgary.

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, 6:06 AM


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