The Vancouver Canucks fell in their second straight game as they closed their Alberta road trip with a 3-0 loss to Calgary. Fortunately for Vancouver, they now return home and will get a captain to lead them through the rest of the season. 

As always, let’s take a look at the game in a bit of a different sense, in the latest edition of “Benny’s Bites!”

First Period

Loui Erikson 

Loui Erikson was a healthy scratch for the Canucks tonight. The second game is the earliest in the season he has ever been scratched, but it was a needed move if Vancouver wished to get the hardworking Adam Gaudette into the fold. 

While he was scratched, it seemed odd that he took part in warmups.

He did and it was weird. Anyways,  onto the rest of the Bites.

Good try Tyler

The Canucks did not have much offence in the first period, but their best chance came off the stick of new defenseman Tyler Myers, whose wrist shot was smoothly smothered. 

Tyler Myers chance GIF

I liked what Myers did here on this play. He pushed into the slot and very few Canucks defenseman ever think of this. The only other time I can remember this happening is with Alex Biega and I’ll take Myers over Biega any day of the week. It would have been nice if he had scored, but you can’t have everything.

He also did give away the puck that led to the opening goal, but let’s focus on positive because we’re all winner!

Nice save Jakey

Markstrom save GIF

Markstrom didn’t have much to do in the first period, but this save is bashfully bewildering. 

The stats and the scoreboard 

Vancouver did a pretty good job of controlling their shots in the first period but failed to get on the scoreboard. Through their 12 shots on goal, the Canucks had a 63.6 Corsi percentage,  which means that 63.6 percent of their shots were controlled. That led to a 60 percent of high scoring chances. These advanced stats point towards the Canucks controlling the majority of the play in the first period, however, what matters in the end is the scoreboard, something that was and stayed in favour of the Flames.

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Screenshot of Natural Stat Trick

Second period:

Best comeback

The on-ice comeback was not what Canucks fans were hoping for, but the off-ice comeback was absolutely hilarious.

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Calgary Flames Instagram

On Friday, the day before the Canucks vs Flames matchup, the Calgary team posted a very suggestive photo on their Instagram. The photo below relayed an unwanted message towards the hockey community and Flames fans. 

The Canucks social media team, playing along with the joke had quite the response ahead of the second period

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Vancouver Canucks Twitter

Hey Vancouver, you’re only allowed five skaters!

Over the entire 2018-19 season, the Canucks got only three too many men penalties called against them. With that, they were lanked 27th in the league, altogether a very good stat for a very bad team. 

The Canucks have played two games this year and they have already matched that stat. There are a few factors which can contribute to this. It could be the influx of new faces, but it could also be poor in-game decisions from head coach Travis Green. I would lean towards the former, as Green clearly knows how to manage his lines; you only have to look to last year to see that.

Third Period:

Powerplay

The Canucks had a slew of powerplay time in the third period. Through six powerplays the canucks got 17 shots, none of which hit the back of the net. The powerplay should be a strength of the team, as they are flush with skilled players to cycle the puck. Now with Quinn Hughes on the backend quarterbacking the man advantage, there is no good reason why the Canucks should struggle, yet they do. 

Vancouver has already shown adjustment in their powerplay strategy this year. Gone are the days of the easily predicted Alex Edler drop pass, as we enter the era of the anaemic cycle.

Newell Brown, the Canucks assistant coach who is also in charge of the powerplay bares some of the responsibility, but cannot take it all. He adjusted his strategy to include Bo Horvat on the unit this time around, yet to no fruit was given from that vine. 

At this point all the Canucks can hope for is that the home opener re-invigorates their lacklustre powerplay.

Winner winner, we have a funny Twitter

Each game I choose the funniest tweet of the night. This one came before the end of the game and even before Canucks Twitter had the chance to go crazy. 
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What to work on?

 

  1. Get Gaudette on the ice

 

In his first game of the season, Adam Gaudette showed that he belonged. Playing with Josh Leivo and Jake Virtanen for most of the night, he was able to offer much more going forward to that of a jay beagle or Brandon Sutter. His line was a slim bright spot for the Canucks, but the American centre only got 11:56 of ice time. 

That’s good for the lowest of his team’s centres. When you are contributing so much while on the ice, there is no reason to be left off. With all of that said, if Gaudette is to get more ice time in the next game, the Canucks should be much more well off.’

2. Change up the powerplay.

Just do something. Please.

Next game: 7:00PT on Wednesday, October 9th VS L.A. Kings  at Rogers Arena

TOP PHOTO: Canucks Twitter

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