Game File 14: Canucks 2 Wild 5

The Good

Kesler finally got rewarded for his hard work and netted his first goal of the season.  Kesler also had one of the best plays of the game when he backhanded a pass to Cooke from his knees in front of the net.  It would have been a highlight reel play if only Cooke had been able to pot the easy goal away.

But Kesler wasn’t the only one flying tonight.  It’s true that Vignealt shortened his bench again in the third period, but that seems to becoming the norm.  But the guys he was playing were a threat, just unable to break through Backstrom.

Despite the fact that the fact Minny got up by a cheap goal (yes, I feel that the penalty shot was cheap), the Canucks put tons of pressure on the Wild throughout the remainder of the second and almost entirely through the third period.

The effort this team puts out is fantastic, and that makes watching these games fun. 

The Bad

What’s making them not fun is the result.  But some things seem to be working against the Canucks.

Not only was the penalty shot questionable, the goal by Todd White happened on a strange play, and was allowed on a strange process.  The video review judge sitting in Toronto (go figure), apparently could tell from his perch the intent of his apparent non-kicking motion of the skate.  The referee who immediately called it off and was standing right their watching the entire play must of been mistaken.  

That decision was bad.  

Fitzpatrick took an ill-timed offensive zone penalty late in the third period that effectively lost them any opportunity of getting back into the game. 

I say that knowing that the play continued to be in the offensive zone for much of the last 3 minutes, but his penalty did result in a goal.  And a two goal deficit with that much time left is a challenge, even in the new NHL.

Add to that, Luongo was human in the third period and allowed 3 goals on 10 shots. 

The end result was 5 straight goals by Minnesota.  From my perspective that’s bad, but there are still some bigger concerns with this team than that.

The Ugly

No scoring finish.  Yes, Kesler got his first goal of the season.  But what happened to the rest of the team.

The continued lack of scoring on the team is now becoming a major concern.  If it continues, Nonis will be in an even deeper hole than Calgary in that regard.  The Canucks have now averaged only 2 goals per game in their last 4.  That is simply not going to win them enough games to make the playoffs this year.

I had stated when the season started that we needed at least 15 games to know who and what this team is.  We are only 1 game away from that, but instead of finding an identity to be proud of, the team still seems somewhat disjointed.  Mostly because their are undisciplined and on the flip side not being rewarded for their hard work.  It’s definitely an interesting situation for the coaching staff and the general manager.

One more game, and it will be time for a breakdown of what’s been happening. 

The Chief Canuck

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