What Went Wrong? Wings/Canucks
When the Vancouver Canucks and the Detroit Red Wings hit the ice, you can usually count on a pretty entertaining game.
Unfortunately when the two met on the night before Halloween, this wasn’t the case. It was a game that lacked flow, energy and not a lot of memorable moments.
The only Canucks that seemed to be awake for this later than usual game were the Sedins and Roberto Luongo. John Tortorella rode the hell out of Henrik especially and the bottom six forwards played under 10 total minutes – a stat that I’m not sure has ever happened in the NHL.
I understand Torts decision to play his top players a lot but its October and I don’t think this amount of playing time is sustainable. The Sedins are 33 not 23 and they need to save something for the playoffs (where they usually suck anyways).
Besides Henrik, Daniel and Roberto there wasn’t a whole lot to like about the Canucks.
I thought Alexandre Burrows looked fine in his second game back but other than that the forwards were invisible tonight. The defense overall played fine but some mistakes were made.
Here are my three chumps of the night.
Sometimes it only takes one big mistake to cost a team a game – and that’s exactly what Chris Tanev did tonight. Tomas Tatar’s game winning goal shouldn’t happen in the NHL and that goal was the direct result of Tanev. If he’s going to block a shot he needs to fully commit to doing so, he went halfway and screened Luongo and it cost the Canucks.
For a guy who basically got called out by Torts after his most productive game of the season, Zack Kassian was horrible out there. Kassian did nothing out there and was a big fat zero across the line for his stats. No goals, no assists, no hits, no shots and no blocked shots.
Sure, he only played 10 minutes but he has to do more with his time.
After a handful of solid efforts on the road, Chris Higgins again was hard to find against the Wings. He had one shot and one hit in 19 minutes. Like Kassian, he’s got to do more. To get that amount of playing time and to do so little with it is pretty concerning.
If the Canucks had more depth I’d recommend sitting Higgins but they just can’t afford to not have him out there.
After a blazing hot start, Mike Santorelli is returning back to Earth. He hasn’t scored a goal since Oct. 10 and its becoming more and more obvious that he’s not a top six forward.
Unfortunately, the Canucks have such little depth and Torts likes him so he suddenly becomes one. Santorelli was a -2 with one hit and zeroes on every other category against Detroit.
The sooner Torts realizes that he can’t rely on this guy the better.
He’s a fine third or fourth liner and energy guy but in no way is he a top six guy in the NHL.
The Canucks get some time to lick their wounds but host that team from Toronto on Saturday. Face-off is at 4 p.m. on CBC.