Wednesday, October 01, 2008

Canucks 6 - Flames 1 - Game Notes

The Canucks had their most impressive outing of the pre-season, outplaying a Flames team who looked like a pre-season team despite dressing a fairly strong lineup, particularly on defense. On to the game notes...

  • The first goal was an encouraging sign for Canuck fans as Demitra made a great pass to Edler as Pyatt drove to the net opening up the ice.
  • Lukas Krajicek has the pressure on him, with others playing very well he cannot afford to make poor plays as he did on a 1st period power play breakout, missing the first pass coming out from behind his own net. Those are the types of plays that he should excel at, as he is supposed to be an offensive defenseman.
  • Mason Raymond was simply great, making Phaneuf (who somehow did not take a penalty on any play on a night where there were some pretty weak calls) look like an average NHL'er. His spot on the roster is secure.
  • The Canucks "3rd line" has officially taken shape. A pretty first period goal, followed by another one in the 3rd period. Hansen has locked up a spot and looked very good with Kesler and Burrows.
  • Lawrence Nycholat had another good game, perhaps his best. He made a few minor giveaways but he carried the puck well, threw a nice hit, scored a nice goal and perhaps most importantly, didn't shy away from taking a hit... one of the week points in Krajicek's game.
  • The naming of Luongo as captain had an obvious effect in the first period, as the Canucks were not taking any sh*t in the crease. Luongo also had a great game. You could almost "feel his presence as captain"
  • It's only the pre-season, but this team looks like a team... nothing to do with the six goals, just the way the entire team supported each other.
  • Ray Ferraro did a pretty decent job (especially considering his new location), often sloppy and talking too much, but the analysis at times is a step above 90% of the guys out there. Give him another 2 years under his belt and he is going to be one of the best analysts, something sorely lacking in sports broadcasting.
  • Johnson has better wheels than thought, nice job coming back on early 2nd period PK
  • Kyle Wellwood just made the team on a great pass by Nycholat. The big question is still where does he fit?
  • Right now Cody Hodgson doesn't have the speed and strength to compete at the NHL level.

All around it was a very strong game by the Canucks, albeit a very weak effort by the Flames. It's easy to get excited when your team has the only perfect record in the NHL pre-season, but there are a lot of things looking really good. Two games to go and it's off to the real thing...

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