The best part of last night's game really came in video form. Either Sully or Force (I don't know which one is which but the dark green one in this case) went all out last night with a full on handstand when Jack Johnson was sent to the penalty box. Awesome stuff by the the green men last night.
Luongo also looked like he was standing on his head with this huge goal line save. Average goaltending would have satisfied me, but this was a game saving one! And may have elicited a ajjklwjfkelh! reaction from me after he made it.
And here is the game winning goal from Sedin to Samuelsson:
According to TSN's Bob McKenzie, Andrew Alberts will not be suspended for that boarding hit on Brad Richardson. A recap may follow out later today (think way later today) with *gasp* praise for a strong game by Edler.
The rest of the goal videos are tucked after the jumpno comments
First off, I've completely stolen the format of this playoff preview from fellow Bloguin blogger Jibblescribbits. Instead of a normal preview breaking down the forwards and defense of the teams, he went with addressing questions that he felt were important to the series and well I like his idea so here is your Canucks vs. Kings playoff preview.
The Canucks have been 3-1-0 against the Kings this season. Their loss was the most recent game played between the two, where the Canucks lost 8-3. As I had said previously, the Kings were my team of choice of who the Canucks would face in the first round. With the travel between the two cities being just an hour of flight time and with no time change, this was the best match up for the Canucks based on team location alone. And the lack of time change is also good for the fans as all the games start at 7pm PST.
So let's look at what I think is the only aspect important to this series:
For both teams there is a question about the goaltending and this may be what the series comes down to. Neither goaltender looked good coming down the stretch and nothing else matters if they aren't playing at least reasonably. In LA Quick won the starting position as goalie from Ersberg and played 72 games for the team this year. In the last 10 games that Quick started he has lost six (three of which were in the shootout), got pulled in two and won two. He was a workhorse through the season and looks like he may have been overworked. The Kings did bring up Jonathan Bernier from the AHL at the end of the season for a few games to give Quick some rest but he has since been sent back down. The Kings have Erik Ersberg as their back up for Quick but with some good performances from Jonathan Bernier, could they call him up instead if Quick crumbles?
Luongo, well we know what he has looked like recently. That 8-3 loss against the Kings on April 1st, albeit with a really bad defence performance and no Daniel Sedin, was a terrible performance from the netminder. He was never pulled in the game and was in net for all 8 goals and maybe that was a good thing. After being shamed by letting in 8 goals, Luongo will want to prove that he can come back from that embarassment.
The rest of the stats to compare between the two teams, like power play % (Canucks 20.9 v. Kings 20.8) or penalty kill % (Canucks 81.6 v. Kings 80.3) are eerily the same between the two teams. The Canucks do have the edge in goals scored per game with 3.27 v. the Kings' 2.82.
The rest of the preview after the jump...no comments
Sorry to disappoint, I'm not going anywhere, you are still stuck with me in Vancouver for the whole series. But Bloguin blogger buddy The Royal Half is making a roadtrip out to Vancouver for Game 2 on Saturday. For reals.
Playoff preview will be up tomorrow. But I'm assuming everyone in Vancouver knows what we are up against: The LA Kings are young. They are exciting. They are only a 1 hour flight away. They are in the same time zone as us (thank god!). CBC is carrying the games, so montages! The Canucks were shellacked last time we played them 8-3, hopefully Luongo wants to prove a point with a huge bounce back game against the Kings. Blah blah blah. We'll get into that tomorrow.
All the series' in the West look great, I am truthfully excited to catch all of them. The two day break from hockey has been long enough, I'm ready to get back into it. Bring it on Kings!
Oh and Salo says he'll be ready to play on Thursdayno comments
Before we get on all that playoff preview stuff, let's take some time to think about what we've seen this season:
- 268 goals scored, that's 2nd in the league right behind the Washington Capitals
- 9 short handed goals
- 49 wins
- Christian Ehrhoff was 3rd among defencemen in plus/minus with 36
Henrik Sedin became the first Canuck to win the Art Ross Trophy. He had 1.365 points per game.
And his brother Daniel, averaged 0.46 goals per game played and 1.34 points per game (do you wonder what could have been had he been healthy the entire season?)
Let's just take today to appreciate what a great year this was
Read these stories if you want more Canucks love:
Thursday, April 15 at Vancouver, 7:00 p.m.
Saturday, April 17 at Vancouver, 7:00 p.m.
Monday, April 19 at Los Angeles, 7:00 p.m.
Wednesday, April 21 at Los Angeles, 7:00 p.m.
*Friday, April 23 at Vancouver, 7:00 p.m.
*Sunday, April 25 at Los Angeles, TBD
*Tuesday, April 27 at Vancouver, TBD
*Games played if necessary
Games will be broadcasted on CBC and times are in PST. Here is the full schedule of Round 1 of the NHL Playoffsno comments
With only one game left for the Canucks against the Flames on Saturday night, a game which is completely irrelevant to the playoff order in the West, the Canucks are playing for nothing. Since it really isn't up to the Canucks as to who they will end up playing in the first round the only thing about Saturday night's game that will matter to the Canucks is to STAY HEALTHY.
But even though we have no power over the order, it's still fun to look at the week ahead about who we might face off against in the first round of the playoffs. Mathematically there are only three possibilities of who we could play: Detroit Red Wings, Nashville Predators or LA Kings. All are winnable in a series for the Canucks, but there are still some pros and cons about preference of who we play.
All three teams are sitting at 98 points after last night, with LA and Detroit having two games left while Nashville only has one. Right now Nashville has the tie breaker between the three teams with the most wins.
Detroit Red Wings
The Wings still have two games remaining, one at Columbus and one at Chicago and have a 35% of ending up in 6th spot. In the four games played this season, the Wings have won 3 and the Canucks 1. Though they are currently tied in points, both LA and Nashville have the tiebreaker over Detroit. They are currently listed ahead of the Preds since they still have a game in hand over them.
The Red Wings are a scary team. I can't think of any fan of a Western Conference team that actually wants a matchup against the Wings. In addition to just being plain good there is also a good 4 hour flight from Vancouver to Detroit and a three hour time difference. There is also a built up fear against the Wings being a better team, regardless if they are the better team or not. The only thing 'questionable' about the Wings is really their goalie Jimmy Howard and his lack of experience. But if you've seen Roberto Luongo lately, then Howard's inexperience in the playoffs is not as worrisome as Luongo's knob of his stick lately.
Continued after the jump...no comments