canucks

Canucks blame game – Panthers win the skills contest

‘Worst game of the year” for Canucks

The recipe for an easy win was there for the Vancouver Canucks on Tuesday – one of the NHL’s worst teams in town, no major injuries, the third game of a six game home stand with plenty of rest and a Panthers team on its longest trip of the season.

The Canucks even managed the semi-impossible and scored more than one goal but it wasn’t enough in a game that head coach John Tortorella summed up perfectly.

“We sucked. It was easily our worst game of the year,” Tortorella told the media. “We didn’t deserve a point.”

And they really didn’t. Vancouver was outplayed terribly in the first and third periods and were lucky that Roberto Luongo stole them a point. It’s a shame that the Canucks are seemingly wasting so many of Luongo’s great performances early in this season because who knows how long his strong play will last.

Tortorella said he thought the Canucks didn’t give the Panthers enough respect and while it’s refreshing to hear such honest talk from a head coach, it’s incredibly disturbing.

Like I said earlier, Luongo was really the only player on Vancouver that brought his working boots tonight and on a night when the Canucks played one period it’s easy to lay the blame.

The Sedins

First of all, “Captain” Henrik Sedin gave us one of the worst quotes in Canucks captain history following the loss to Florida. Here’s the gem:

“After they scored their second goal I thought we wanted to get the point badly and maybe we sat back a little too much and they got a lot of chances late in the game,” he said.

Got to love the captain wanting to settle for a point on home ice in November against one of the worst teams in the NHL.

Edler looked shaky all night

Edler looked shaky all night. (Photo: Canucks.com)

Since Daniel Sedin and Henrik Sedin signed their extensions earlier this month, they have a combined six points in eight games – brutal. Daniel might be getting a lot of shots but they are the weakest perimeter soft shots on goal possible – he’s not making the goalie work at all.

The Sedins are paid to produce and they couldn’t produce in the third period when the Canucks needed them to. They need to start connecting if the Canucks have any chance of scoring more than a goal or two.

Zack Kassian

Another game of Zack Kassian really doing nothing out there. He lost his man on the second goal, was a -1 and had one shot in 13 minutes. He wasn’t even credited with a single hit the entire game.

I’d love to see Torts sit this guy, he hasn’t scored in five games and looks totally confused defensively.

Ryan Kesler

It might be time to move this guy to the middle, especially with the Sedins suddenly being so ineffective. Ryan Kesler looked slow and uninterested against the Panthers and had zero hits and two shots in over 20 minutes.

He hasn’t scored in six games and has two goals in his last 10 so I think it’s time to shake things up a bit – it can’t get much worse for #17.

Alex Edler

He looked shaky all night and only managed one shot and no hits in over 24 minutes. It begs the question – what on earth was he doing out there? I’m not sure why Torts continues to use Alex Edler over Jason Garrison on the power play but that should be one of the first changes to get that horrible first unit going.

Edler has one point in his last 12 games – cut this guy’s ice time and make him prove himself again because it’s been an ugly month.

Vancouver gets a chance for redemption on Friday when the Columbus Blue Jackets come to town but it might not be easy. The Jackets were shelled 7-0 by the lowly Edmonton Oilers on Tuesday and after a players only meeting following the loss, they could be motivated.

Puck drop is 7 p.m. on Sportsnet.

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About Ben Lypka

Straight outta South Central Delta, BC, Ben's been a sports nut for as long as he can remember. With experience covering the Olympic Games and reporting on sporting events in BC and Alberta, he hopes to bring a unique perspective to the NWSB! You can catch him on twitter too! Connect with Ben today!
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