|"I'm better than you" - Ryan Kesler.|
It wasn't the prettiest of wins, but they all count the same at the end of the season. Except for shootout victories, oddly enough they sort of don't. The Canucks came out of the gate strong and got a 2-0 lead less than five minutes into the game. They were more than happy to relinquish this lead around the half way mark in the second, and regained it just as fast heading into the second intermission ahead 3-2. By the time it was all said and done the Canucks left Bridgestone Arena the victors by a score of 5-2. A penny for my thoughts is great and all, but I'd rather trade them for Canucks goals.
1. Shades of 2011? I'd ask if anybody remembers the Canucks run to the cup in 2011, but it seems kind of redundant and all. Assuming you watched that season there are probably a few memories of this team that will forever be etched in your brain, but maybe these two in particular: Ryan Kesler dominating the Predators and horrible second periods. Two years later, and Kes apparently still has it. He finished the night with two goals and one hell of an egotistical celly. I guess nobody's perfect. The thing that stuck out the most for me though with regards to this eerily 2011-esque game was the awful second period. The Canucks were out-shot in that period 19-10. Let that sink in for a second. Nashville had 19 shots that period, let alone the game. They were rewarded with two goals, and were it not for some great play in net by Roberto Luongo it easily could have been more.
2. Banged up Predators: The Predators roster, despite it's usually being relatively competitive, is usually riddled with AHL level players at the best of times. Tonight was far from the best of times for the Predators. Their injured list includes household names like Kevin Klein, Mike Fisher, Brandon Yip, Patrick Hornqvist, Paul Gaustad and Gabriel Bourque. Sarcasm aside, that's a lot of injuries for a deep team to try and cope with, but the Predators? Talk about a lost cause.
3. Derek Roy shines as a winger: Roy's short stint has a Canuck has had it's share of lows and highs. In his first game he looked every bit the first line center he established himself as in Buffalo. A week later he was playing with Dale Weise. His new role for tonight though, was playing on the wing. The early returns on this change of position are none too shabby. Roy had a goal, his first as a Canuck, and an assist to validate the coaches decision. In case you're wondering this wasn't Roy's first try at winger in the big leagues. In Buffalo's 2006 and 2007 playoff runs he played left wing, notching 22 points in 34 games. Maybe AV is on to something...
4. Wait, you're telling me power play's are an advantage? For tonight at least. The Canucks went 2 for 4 with the man advantage with goals from Kesler and Garrison. It was the first time they had notched 2 goals with the man advantage since February 17th against the St.Louis Blues, who they just so happen to be playing tomorrow at 5pm PST. The common factor in both games, a healthy Ryan Kesler getting the first power play goal in each.
5. Hey, who's that Luongo guy? Have to admit, I'm almost forgetting about Lu myself. Not Luongo's fault, Schneider is just playing too damn well. Back to Luongo though. I'm gonna go ahead and call him the surprise starter for this game just because he so rarely sees game time nowadays, but more important than what he's called was his performance. A stellar outing all in all. He made several great saves off his shoulder tonight on way too many odd-man rushes for my liking. All in all Lu had 36 saves on the night.