Pass it to Bulis

Pass it to Bulis is Harrison Mooney and Daniel Wagner. The official Canucks blog of the Vancouver Courier, PITB is also the only blog that knows who needs the puck.
  • I Watched This Game: Late Michael Del Zotto penalty costs Canucks versus the Canadiens

    Up until the final three minutes, Michael Del Zotto was having a great game. The defenceman was aggressive offensively, jumping up in the rush with aplomb, providing some much needed vim and vigour to a tired Canucks team after a long road trip. He wasn’t perfect, by any means, but the puck was moving in the right direction when he was on the ice, with the Canucks out-shooting the visiting Canadiens 10-6 at 5-on-5.

    Daniel WagnerNovember 18, 2018

  • I Watched This Game: Richard Bachman gets lit up in first start for tired Canucks

    That is what a tired team looks like. No other team in the NHL has played as many games as the Canucks so far this season and they’ve also had two six-game road trips through the east coast. It’s been an exhausting schedule and it’s no surprise the team is looking a little haggard and run down. It was a tough situation for Richard Bachman to get his first start of the season.

    Daniel WagnerNovember 15, 2018

  • Daniel and Henrik Sedin will join eight other Canucks players in the BC Sports Hall of Fame

    On Wednesday, two legendary Canucks broadcasters got the chance to welcome two legendary Canucks to the BC Sports Hall of Fame Class of 2019. Tom Larscheid and Jim Robson had the honour of announcing the induction of Daniel and Henrik Sedin, which will take place in May. It’s a well-deserved honour, as the Sedins are the best players in the history of the Canucks and will likely be inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in the future.

    Daniel WagnerNovember 15, 2018

  • Paper Feature: As injuries plague Canucks, Bo Horvat has thrived in a more defensive role

    When the Canucks signed three bottom-six forwards at the opening of free agency this summer, one of the justifications they used was that the three forwards would allow them to put the Canucks’ young forwards in a position to succeed. Jay Beagle, Tim Schaller, and Antoine Roussel would join the Canucks’ other veterans in taking on the bulk of the defensive duties, freeing up the youth to provide offence.

    Daniel WagnerNovember 15, 2018

  • Black Aces Podcast: Elite Hutton, neutral zone Virtanen, and a sizzling Juolevi take

    It’s time for another episode of the Black Aces Podcast, featuring writers from across the Canucks’ media world, both mainstream and blogosphere. In this week’s episode, the Black Aces delves into whether this is a turning point of the Canucks season: is this the moment when the preseason projections of a non-playoff team come to fruition or is this just a bump in the road? They also talk about just how good Ben Hutton has been, Jake Virtanen’s excellent work in the neutral zone, and some detailed discussion on prospects on the Utica Comets.

    Daniel WagnerNovember 14, 2018

  • Canucks prospect Jack Rathbone is making a statement in his freshman season at Harvard

    The Canucks’ hopes on defence are resting heavily on the shoulders of Quinn Hughes, their seventh overall pick from the 2018 draft, and for good reason. Hughes is a dynamo on defence, a one-man breakout machine at even-strength and potentially the puck-moving power play quarterback for which the Canucks have pined for years. While the Canucks desperately need Hughes to be as good as prospect experts have projected, however, he’s not the only promising defenceman in the system.

    Daniel WagnerNovember 14, 2018

  • I Watched This Game: Tom Kuhnhackl, weird goals carry the Islanders over the Canucks

    Sometimes hockey is just plain odd. The New York Islanders were undoubtedly the better team in this game, out-shooting and out-chancing the Canucks by a wide margin. At the same time, they wouldn’t have won without a trio of goals funkier than George Clinton, Sir DZL, and Brass Monkey.

    Daniel WagnerNovember 13, 2018

  • Markus Granlund’s 19-goal season is the worst thing that could have happened to him

    2016-17 was a breakout season for Markus Granlund. In his first full year with the Vancouver Canucks, he set a career high with 19 goals in just 69 games. You could come up with a number of explanations for him breaking out. It could have been the change of scenery and the fresh start with a new team. He went from playing predominantly at centre with the Flames’ organization to the wing with the Canucks. Perhaps, at 23, things just clicked mentally and physically for him as he hit what should be the start of his peak.

    Daniel WagnerNovember 13, 2018

  • I Watched This Game: Nikolay Goldobin bumps slump, but Rangers dump Canucks

    What is the opposite of a barn burner? The phrase “barn burner” has been used in reference to exciting sporting events for nearly a century, though it’s not entirely clear why. Perhaps it’s because a barn burning is a spectacle that draws attention, but for that we have “train wreck,” with its more negative connotations.

    Daniel WagnerNovember 12, 2018

  • I Watched This Game: Loui Eriksson scores, Petey dekes, but Sabres win in shootout

    It wasn’t easy watching this team last year, and I would particularly dread games that started before noon. But this season is entirely different. I’ll get up at any hour to watch Elias Pettersson . . .

    Will GrahamNovember 10, 2018

  • Paper Feature: Has Jake Virtanen finally figured it out?

    When you look at the Canucks’ top scorers, it’s the young stars leading the way. Elias Pettersson, unsurprisingly, leads the Canucks in goals and points, with Bo Horvat and Brock Boeser not too far behind. Third in goals, however, is a slightly less expected name: Jake Virtanen.

    Daniel WagnerNovember 9, 2018

  • I Watched This Game: Bo Horvat and Loui Eriksson lift Canucks to eight goals in Boston

    The Vancouver Canucks hadn’t scored eight goals in a game in nine years. It was November 14th, 2009 and Henrik Sedin led the way with a hattrick in an 8-1 drubbing of the Colorado Avalanche. It was the only hattrick of his career, and it was the capstone of an incredible run while his brother was injured, which was a major argument in his Hart Trophy win at the end of the season.

    Daniel WagnerNovember 9, 2018

  • Former NHLer Marc Savard breaks down Elias Pettersson’s tape job [VIDEO]

    Canucks fans are understandably hyped up about Elias Pettersson right now, but he’s caught the attention of the entire NHL. It’s hard to ignore Pettersson, even when he plays in the far-off lands of the Pacific Northwest, as he’s just been so unbelievably good. As Pettersson gets set to face the Boston Bruins on Thursday night, a former Bruin, Marc Savard, weighed in on Pettersson’s unreal start and broke down the tape job of his stick in his YouTube series "Taping Twigs."

    Daniel WagnerNovember 8, 2018

  • PITB on the Radio: 3 reasons why Loui Eriksson should stay on Elias Pettersson’s line

    On Wednesday evening, I joined Mira Laurence on Sportsnet Tonight to discuss all things Elias Pettersson. The city is still abuzz after his slap shot snipe job against the Detroit Red Wings, which was a fitting follow-up to his dynamite five-point performance against the Colorado Avalanche. In some ways, we shouldn’t be surprised: Pettersson has made a habit of destroying expectations.

    Daniel WagnerNovember 8, 2018

  • Nikolay Goldobin has been an excellent linemate for Elias Pettersson

    At 5-on-5, Pettersson has seven goals and three assists, meaning he’s a point-per-game even without the power play. Taking into account his ice time, Pettersson is the top scorer in the NHL at 5-on-5, with 4.67 points per hour. For the vast majority of that time at 5-on-5, Pettersson has been joined at the hip with Nikolay Goldobin.

    Daniel WagnerNovember 7, 2018

  • I Watched This Game: Elias Pettersson brings back the 80's, but Red Wings prevail in the shootout

    Travis Green doesn’t normally shake up the lineup after a win, but he did so for Tuesday’s game against the Detroit Red Wings out of necessity. Chris Tanev was ready to play and Brock Boeser was not, so it was time for some ch-ch-ch-ch-changes.

    Daniel WagnerNovember 6, 2018

  • The Canucks miss Sven Baertschi more than you might think

    As the Canucks have dealt with a bevy of injuries, one has flown under the radar. Sven Baertschi hasn’t played since taking a hit to the head during a game against the Vegas Golden Knights. Baertschi has missed five games so far and there has been no word from the Canucks as to a timetable for his return.

    Daniel WagnerNovember 6, 2018

  • Black Aces Podcast: Could Elias Pettersson carry the Canucks to the playoffs this season?

    The Black Aces Podcast is back, featuring weekly discussion of the Vancouver Canucks from a unique collection of hockey writers. In episode 3, the Black Aces are hyped up about Elias Pettersson after his 5-point Friday night and they’ve got playoffs on the mind. Specifically, would it be a good thing if Pettersson carried the Canucks to the playoffs this season?

    Daniel WagnerNovember 5, 2018

  • Elias Pettersson can’t keep up this scoring pace, right?

    Don’t look now, but Elias Pettersson is on pace to tie Teemu Selanne’s rookie record of 76 goals in a season. Actually, you should look now, because he’s unlikely to maintain that pace for much longer.

    Daniel WagnerNovember 5, 2018

  • I Watched This Game: Elias Pettersson rides out the Avalanche with a five-point night

    A game like this seemed inevitable. All season, the Canucks have swung between two extremes: holding their opponents to two or fewer goals, where they’ve won every time, or giving up four or more and losing. So, after only giving up two goals against in each of their two previous games, and facing a high-flying, high-scoring Colorado Avalanche, it wasn’t at all surprising that the Canucks gave up six goals and got run out of their own building with a loss. Wait, what’s that? The Canucks scored seven goals and won?

    Daniel WagnerNovember 3, 2018

  • Does Elias Pettersson have any competition for the Calder Trophy?

    It shouldn’t come as a surprise that Elias Pettersson leads all NHL rookies in scoring. He was named the Rookie of the Month for October despite missing six games with a concussion, and scored seven goals and 10 points in eight games, all while playing significant minutes at centre for the Canucks.

    Daniel WagnerNovember 2, 2018

  • There are reasons for both caution and optimism in the Canucks' strong start

    The Canucks capped off October with a resounding win over the visiting Chicago Blackhawks and found themselves in an unexpected place: first in the Pacific Division. Certainly, the Canucks have played more games than anyone else in their division, giving them more opportunities to pick up points, but there’s no denying that the team has been a lot better than anyone expected. Most experts and statistical models predicted a last place finish in the Pacific, so this hot start could throw a wrench in those projections.

    Daniel WagnerNovember 1, 2018

  • I Watched This Game: #ShotgunJake strikes twice to beat Blackhawks on Halloween night

    Not long ago, the Chicago Blackhawks were Vancouver’s very own boogie man. They were the monster under your bed, the ghoul scratching at the window, and the vampire lurking in the shadows. Nowadays, they still have the potential to scare you, but they've never been quite as frightening since Alex Burrows slayed the dragon.

    Daniel WagnerNovember 1, 2018

  • Hutton and Pouliot are struggling to fill Edler’s shoes on the power play

    Alex Edler has been the point man on the Canucks’ first power play unit for almost his entire career. From his second full season with the Canucks, he was either with Kevin Bieksa or Christian Ehrhoff on the first unit, or manning the blue line by himself. It’s not hard to understand why: he’s good at it, even if some Canucks fans might disagree.

    Daniel WagnerOctober 31, 2018

  • I Watched This Game: Elias Pettersson back up to goal-per-game pace against the Wild

    The red-hot Minnesota Wild — it feels strange to even say that phrase — entered Monday night on a five-game winning streak. They’re pretty much completely healthy, with only fourth-liner Matt Hendricks out of the lineup with an injury. They were in the top-ten in goals against and boasted one of the stingiest penalty kills in the league.

    Daniel WagnerOctober 30, 2018

  • Ben Hutton and Erik Gudbranson are embracing the challenge of unexpected top-pairing roles

    Injuries are an inevitability in hockey, but it’s rare that one game wipes out an entire top pairing. That’s exactly what happened to the Canucks last week: Alex Edler and Chris Tanev both left a game against the Vegas Golden Knights. Tanev is day-to-day — he won’t play Monday night against the Minnesota Wild — but Edler is expected to miss 3-6 weeks with an MCL sprain. That puts a lot of pressure on the rest of the defence, particularly Ben Hutton and Erik Gudbranson, who have had to fill in for Edler and Tanev as the top pairing.

    Daniel WagnerOctober 29, 2018

  • Black Aces Podcast: Talking Pettersson, special teams analytics, and Brian "dinosaur" Burke

    It's episode 2 of the Black Aces Podcast this season! What is the Black Aces Podcast? It’s a group of Canucks writers talking about the Canucks. We may not be be the big names, but we work hard, grind along the boards, and once in a while a good take bounces in off our butts.

    Daniel WagnerOctober 29, 2018

  • I Watched This Game: Pettersson and Boeser return, but Penguins pile on goals in shutout win

    If you have yet to watch this game, but have it recorded on your PVR, with the intent of watching it later, I have a simple recommendation: watch the first period. Then, stop the recording, delete the game, turn your television off, and then throw your television out the window.

    Daniel WagnerOctober 28, 2018

  • I Watched This Game: Coyotes pick off injured Canucks with third period push

    Just 11 games into the season, the Canucks have been devastated by injuries. That has to be frustrating given how much time Jim Benning and the Canucks spent looking at their injury woes during the off-season. Benning even justified his free agent signings on the basis of injury prevention, claiming that more size could help the Canucks avoid injuries and that their ability to get in on the forecheck would mean less time in the defensive zone, where injuries can be a little more likely thanks to blocking shots, taking hits, and grindining along the boards and in front of the net.

    Daniel WagnerOctober 26, 2018

  • With Alex Edler and Chris Tanev injured, the pressure is on Jim Benning’s defence

    Jim Benning was a very talented defenceman in his playing days, known for his vision and playmaking ability. In his final year in the WHL, he led the Portland Winter Hawks in scoring with 28 goals and 111 assists in 72 games, making him the third highest-scoring defenceman in WHL history. His offensive production in the NHL never quite lived up to his massive WHL numbers, but he still carved out a solid NHL career, playing 610 games between the Toronto Maple Leafs and Vancouver Canucks.

    Daniel WagnerOctober 25, 2018

  • I Watched This Game: Horvat and Markstrom star in gutsy win over the Golden Knights

    Pretend for a moment that you don’t know the outcome of this game. Imagine you only had the following information: the Canucks were missing both Elias Pettersson and Brock Boeser to start the game. They lost Alex Edler to an injury halfway through the first period, Sven Baertschi halfway through the second period, and Chris Tanev halfway through the third period. They were facing last season’s Western Conference Champions, who out-shot them 35-to-26.

    Daniel WagnerOctober 25, 2018

  • Loui “Little Things” Eriksson and the importance of details

    It’s awfully difficult to ignore six million dollars. If you or I found six million dollars on the side of the road, we’d probably pull over and at least take a look. If six million dollars showed up in your chequing account, you would probably head straight to the bank while double-checking your balance on your phone every five minutes. For the moment, however, I want you to ignore the six million dollar cap hit attached to Loui Eriksson. It’s a difficult task, I know, but I want you to try, because that’s what Canucks’ head coach Travis Green does every day.

    Daniel WagnerOctober 24, 2018

  • Paper Feature: How does the start of Elias Pettersson’s career compare to other Canucks greats?

    Canucks fans have gotten used to being cut down in the cruelest of ways. It started right from the first moment as an NHL franchise: a spinning wheel to decide the first overall pick between the Canucks and Buffalo Sabres seemed to land on the Canucks’ number, giving them the the chance to draft future Hall-of-Famer Gilbert Perreault. A moment later they were informed that they had misread the wheel and would draft second, getting the lesser prize of defenceman Dale Tallon.

    Daniel WagnerOctober 23, 2018

  • I Watched This Game: Canucks can't contain Alex Ovechkin and the Capitals

    This is a disaster. For all the Canucks’ struggles over the past couple seasons, there’s one thing they’ve managed to avoid: the Crap Mantle. Now, just nine games into the 2018-19 NHL season, the Canucks have taken on the mantle of crapitude from the Washington Capitals. It is a shameful moment: for now, there’s no denying that the Canucks are the worst team in the NHL.

    Daniel WagnerOctober 23, 2018

  • The Canucks are off to a great start, but can they avoid the Crap Mantle?

    This isn’t where anyone expected the Canucks to be. Eight games into the 2018-19 season, the Canucks are tied for second in the Pacific Division with a 5-3-0 record. Perhaps that’s more of an indictment on the quality of the Pacific as a whole, but the Canucks have dealt with a tough schedule to start the season and come out with a winning record.

    Daniel WagnerOctober 22, 2018

  • I Watched This Game: Brock Boeser and Bo Horvat play overtime heroes against the Boston Bruins

    The Canucks players may not care much about the 2011 Stanley Cup Final, but the fans sure do. That was clearly evident by the lusty booing that filled Rogers Arena every time that Brad Marchand touched the puck.

    Daniel WagnerOctober 21, 2018

  • Alex Edler and Chris Tanev are getting crushed, but it appears to be by design

    As the Canucks get set to face the Boston Bruins, it’s hard for Canucks fans to avoid thinking back to the 2011 Stanley Cup Final. It would be hard for much animosity to remain between the two teams, however, as just two players on the Canucks’ roster were even on the team back in 2011. Alex Edler and Chris Tanev are the only players remaining from that ill-fated 2011 team and they form the Canucks' current top pairing. The two veteran defencemen have plenty of experience and Green has relied on them to soak up big minutes for his young team.

    Daniel WagnerOctober 19, 2018

  • I Watched This Game: Jets capitalize on Canucks' defensive breakdowns

    This wasn’t exactly the friendliest schedule to start the season for the Canucks. While there’s something to be said for an early road trip to help with team bonding and cohesiveness, it wasn’t ideal to head out on the road for six games after just one game at home. That’s particularly true when you look at the Canucks’ opponents, including three legitimate Cup contenders in Tampa Bay, Pittsburgh, and Winnipeg.

    Daniel WagnerOctober 18, 2018

  • So you’re thinking of harassing a hockey player online

    I was thinking I might harass a hockey player on his social media accounts. Don’t.

    Daniel WagnerOctober 18, 2018

  • This isn’t the first time Anders Nilsson has gotten off to a hot start

    Anders Nilsson has been a backup goaltender for his entire NHL career. With the New York Islanders, who drafted him, he played for a season behind Evgeni Nabokov. In Edmonton, he backed up Cam Talbot with the Oilers. Then, with the Buffalo Sabres, he backed up Robin Lehner. Nilsson called signing in Vancouver an “easy decision” because of how much the Canucks expressed their desire to sign him. You have to think the possibility of out-battling a fellow long-time NHL backup in Jacob Markstrom for a starting role had to have been a factor. There are only 31 starting jobs in the NHL and only so many of those jobs are legitimately up for grabs.

    Daniel WagnerOctober 17, 2018

  • I Watched This Game: Luck had nothing to do with Brock Boeser’s OT winner

    The primary question heading into this game against the Pittsburgh Penguins: how would the Canucks perform without Elias Pettersson in the lineup? Could the Canucks win without their 19-year-old star putting up points, particularly when he’s been the catalyst for the offence, scoring their first goal in four of their five games?

    Daniel WagnerOctober 16, 2018

  • Travis Green understands the frustration with the lack of response to Elias Pettersson’s injury

    Canucks fans wanted blood. Specifically, Michael Matheson’s blood. Sure, some fans might have said they just wanted some “pushback” from the Canucks after Matheson injured Elias Pettersson: perhaps some pushing and shoving after the whistle, a legal bodycheck on the forecheck, or even a fight likely to involve more clutching and grabbing than knuckle-chucking. But other Canucks fans: they wanted blood on the ice.

    Daniel WagnerOctober 15, 2018

  • NHL suspends Michael Matheson for two games for play on Elias Pettersson

    There were a wide array of responses around the NHL to Michael Matheson violently slamming Elias Pettersson to the ice during Saturday’s game between the Vancouver Canucks and Florida Panthers. Several former NHLers weighed in with disbelief that a suspension was even being considered.

    Daniel WagnerOctober 15, 2018

  • Canucks call up Adam Gaudette as Jay Beagle goes on Injured Reserve

    The Canucks lost two centres to injury on Saturday, though one got a lot more attention than the other. After Elias Pettersson’s night was ended early by Michael Matheson, Jay Beagle left the game after blocking a slap shot by Mike Hoffman.

    Daniel WagnerOctober 15, 2018

  • I Watched This Game: Canucks win the game, but lose Elias Pettersson

    The outcome of this game ceased mattering to a lot of Canucks fans five minutes into the third period. That’s when Elias Pettersson left the game after a dirty play by the Panthers’ Michael Matheson. He didn’t return. It’s hard to overstate just how important Pettersson is to the Canucks, even after just five games in the NHL. If the Canucks want to retain any hope of making the playoffs this season, as unlikely as that may be, they need Pettersson to stay healthy.

    Daniel WagnerOctober 13, 2018

  • Michael Matheson should be suspended for hit on Elias Pettersson

    It didn’t take long for Elias Pettersson to suffer the first injury of his NHL career, but it had little to do with his lack of size. Instead, it came as a result of a predatory cheap shot that should see Florida Panthers’ defenceman Michael Matheson get a call from the NHL’s Department of Player Safety.

    Daniel WagnerOctober 13, 2018

  • I Watched This Game: Anders Nilsson steals a win with 33 saves for the Canucks

    There are two versions of Anders Nilsson. There’s the version that let’s in a goal within the first five minutes of the game, often on the first shot. That version of Nilsson is a trainwreck and will get blown up with soft goal after soft goal. He should be pulled immediately after allowing that first goal. If Nilsson manages to go five minutes without allowing a goal, however, something bizarre happens: he becomes nigh-unbeatable.

    Daniel WagnerOctober 12, 2018

  • Paper Feature: It won’t be long before Elias Pettersson is the Canucks’ number one centre

    Any time a player has a hot start to a season, it can lead to a little over-excitement. When that start to the season is also the start to the career of the team’s most highly-hyped prospect, that excitement can reach a fever pitch.

    Daniel WagnerOctober 11, 2018

  • Mike Gillis wishes he had changed the Canucks’ scouting staff and system earlier

    Gilman’s former boss with the Canucks, Mike Gillis, joined the Sekeres and Price show on Wednesday for his first of what should be many appearances this season. Much of his first appearance was spent looking back at Gillis’s time as general manager of the Canucks, when he oversaw the best stretch in franchise history, including two Presidents’ Trophies and a heartbreakingly close playoff run in 2011.

    Daniel WagnerOctober 10, 2018

  • It’s not just Jacob Markstrom; save percentages are down across the NHL

    Jacob Markstrom knows he needs to be better. After a strong start in the season opener, Markstrom has been porous. In each of the last two games, the opposition has scored on their first shot of the game and he’s given up a couple soft goals that are hard to excuse.

    Daniel WagnerOctober 10, 2018

  • I Watched This Game: Sven Baertschi’s three-point night can’t stop the Hurricanes

    Through three games this season, the Canucks have been one of the highest-scoring teams in the NHL. After three goals against the Hurricanes on Tuesday, they’re up to 12 goals, averaging 4 goals per game. It took them five games last season to reach 12 goals.

    Daniel WagnerOctober 9, 2018

  • What should the Canucks do when Antoine Roussel returns?

    Before the Canucks embarked on their current six-game road trip, Antoine Roussel returned to practice for the first time since suffering a concussion prior to training camp. Roussel was bouncing after the practice, clearly pleased to be back on the ice without concussions symptoms.

    Daniel WagnerOctober 9, 2018

  • I Watched This Game: Pettersson puts up points; penalty kill disappoints

    It didn’t seem like Elias Pettersson could possibly improve on his fantastic NHL debut, when he scored a gorgeous goal and added a nifty assist. Then he literally one-upped his two-point game on Wednesday with three points on Saturday.

    Daniel WagnerOctober 7, 2018

  • Jake Virtanen can’t help but laugh at the #ShotgunJake buzz

    While Elias Pettersson’s first NHL goal was undoubtedly the highlight of Wednesday’s season opener for the Canucks, a certain portion of the fanbase was eagerly anticipating the first goal of the season for another first round pick: Jake Virtanen.

    Daniel WagnerOctober 5, 2018

  • How Elias Pettersson’s size can protect him from injury

    No one was ever concerned about Elias Pettersson’s skill. The SHL Rookie of the Year and MVP left no doubt about his talent last season, leading the league with a (record-breaking) 56 points in 44 games. What everyone was concerned about was his size.

    Daniel WagnerOctober 5, 2018

  • Paper Feature: Optimistic predictions for the 2018-19 Vancouver Canucks

    The preseason could not have gone much worse for the Canucks. They won just one out of seven games, and that came in a shootout. They were out-scored 30 to 11. At even-strength, they scored the fewest preseason goals in the NHL, managing just five.

    Daniel WagnerOctober 5, 2018

  • Breakdowning Elias Pettersson’s first career NHL goal

    That might have been the best debut for a Canucks rookie in franchise history. You could make an argument for Thomas Gradin, who had two goals and an assist in his first NHL game, but that was against the awful Colorado Rockies and it was in an 8-2 drubbing. It’s not quite the same as opening the scoring with your first career shot against a tough Pacific Division rival.

    Daniel WagnerOctober 4, 2018

  • #ShotgunJake is the meme we needed for this Canucks season

    It started innocently enough. It ended with dozens of Canucks fans shotgunning beers in the middle of the season opener against the Calgary Flames. By the end of the game, #ShotgunJake was trending across Canada on Twitter and the meme Canucks fans needed was born.

    Daniel WagnerOctober 4, 2018

  • I Watched This Game: Elias Pettersson shines brighter than the Flames in Canucks debut

    I think Elias Pettersson might be NHL-ready. I know, that’s a bold thing to say about a raw, 19-year-old rookie, playing his first ever NHL game, but I’m going to go out on a limb and say he’s capable of, at the very least, playing on the fourth line.

    Daniel WagnerOctober 4, 2018

  • Pacific Division Preview of Pain: Vegas Golden Knights

    Anything seems possible for the Golden Knights. They could once again excel, dominating the rest of the Western Conference enroute to their second Stanley Cup Final appearance in as many years. Or they could collapse completely, showing that their inaugural season was a flash in the pan, instead of a sign of things to come.

    Daniel WagnerOctober 3, 2018

  • What is your prediction for the 2018-19 Vancouver Canucks?

    The experts have weight in, the models been run, and EA Sports simulated the season in a video game. Now, the puck is about to drop on the start of the 2018-19 NHL season and I want to know one thing: how well do you think the Canucks will do?

    Daniel WagnerOctober 3, 2018

  • Pacific Division Preview of Pain: San Jose Sharks

    In the book of Matthew in the Bible, Jesus told a parable that ended with the aphorism, “For to everyone who has, more will be given, and he will have abundance; but from him who does not have, even what he has will be taken away.” The 19th century poet Percy Bysshe Shelley turned that into the slightly pithier, “The rich get richer and the poor get poorer.”

    Daniel WagnerOctober 3, 2018

  • Could this be the worst Canucks team in franchise history?

    Apart from Tyler Motte, nobody got what they wanted out of the Canucks’ preseason. If the Canucks were hoping to see prospects take a step forward and challenge for NHL jobs, they were disappointed. If Brock Boeser wanted to get back in his goal-scoring groove, he was disappointed. If fans wanted to ignore the terrifying truth and just watch the Canucks win a few games, they were disappointed.

    Daniel WagnerOctober 2, 2018

  • Pacific Division Preview of Pain: Los Angeles Kings

    The Canucks kick off the season on Wednesday with a game against a Pacific Division rival. They’ll wind up playing 29 of their 82-game season against the Pacific Division. That means how they match up against the other teams in their division will play a large role in where they finish in the standings this season.

    Daniel WagnerOctober 2, 2018

  • Pacific Division Preview of Pain: Edmonton Oilers

    With the start of the season just around the riverbend, PITB is previewing the Canucks’ Pacific Division opponents. These previews tend to be a little bit painful, as the rest of the Pacific Division appears to be a fair bit better than the Canucks.

    Daniel WagnerOctober 1, 2018

  • Pacific Division Preview of Pain: Calgary Flames

    The start of the NHL season is just two days away. The long summer is finally ending and hockey is officially back. Some fans have been eagerly awaiting the start of the regular season; others have been dreading it. Whether you’re ready or not, the puck will drop on Wednesday night in Rogers Arena, as the Canucks face the next team in our series of Pacific Division previews: the Calgary Flames.

    Daniel WagnerOctober 1, 2018

  • Camp Cuts: The Canucks actually waived Sam Gagner

    Heading into training camp, Jim Benning and Travis Green suggested that no one’s job was safe and that they would be willing to waive a veteran to make room for a younger player. On Monday, Benning followed through on those words, putting Sam Gagner on waivers, along with Darren Archibald.

    Daniel WagnerOctober 1, 2018

  • I Watched This (Preseason) Game: Goldobin shines, scoring hard to find against Coyotes

    The Canucks wrapped up their pre-season against the Arizona Coyotes at Prospera Place in Kelowna, a fantastic venue. The team had to clear out of Rogers Arena because it was being haunted by the . . .

    Will GrahamSeptember 30, 2018

  • Pacific Division Preview of Pain: Arizona Coyotes

    The Canucks are going to see a lot of their Pacific Division opponents this season, with 29 of their 82 games coming against their Pacific rivals. How do the Canucks stack up against the other seven teams in their division? Honestly, not particularly well. That’s why this series of previews is labeled the Pacific Division Preview of Pain.

    Daniel WagnerSeptember 29, 2018

  • Pacific Division Preview of Pain: Anaheim Ducks

    Over one-third of the Canucks games this season will be against Pacific Division opponents. Accordingly, how the Canucks play against their rivals within the Pacific will play a large role in where they finish in the standings. Since we’re going to seeing so much of the Pacific Division teams, it seemed appropriate to take a moment to preview each of those teams and see how they stack up against the Canucks in several key areas.

    Daniel WagnerSeptember 28, 2018

  • Paper Feature: Vancouver Canucks 2018-19 Season Preview

    For the first time in 19 years, the Canucks will enter an NHL season without the Sedins. It’s a time of transition and change — a “new era” as head coach Travis Green called it.

    Daniel WagnerSeptember 28, 2018

  • Which defenceman will man the point on the Canucks’ first power play unit?

    Throughout the preseason, Travis Green and power play coach Newell Brown have experimented with three different defencemen on the first unit: Alex Edler, Ben Hutton, and Derrick Pouliot. Green refused to say which of those three defencemen was most likely to play on the first power play unit — “I probably wouldn’t say it if I knew,” he said — so it’s still up in the air.

    Daniel WagnerSeptember 27, 2018

  • Camp Cuts: Adam Gaudette, Olli Juolevi, and Brendan Gaunce are Utica-bound

    The media gathered at Canucks’ practice on Thursday, counting players on the ice and trying to figure out who was missing. “Is Leipsic on the ice? There he is. Where’s Biega? Have you seen Motte?”

    Daniel WagnerSeptember 27, 2018

  • I Watched This (Preseason) Game: Few Canucks impress as they’re dispatched by Oilers

    The start of the preseason is always full of hope and optimism. Presented with a blank slate, a passel of promising prospects, and a fun new free agent or two, fans can quickly buy in to what the team is selling.

    Daniel WagnerSeptember 26, 2018

  • The Canucks are drawing a ton of penalties this preseason

    For the first time in nearly two decades, the Canucks' power play won’t feature Daniel and Henrik Sedin. The retirement of the Sedins means a significant change to the top power play unit, both in personnel and systems, which will have a ripple effect down to the second unit. With that in mind, it would be ideal if the Canucks could get a lot of time to practice the power play this preseason, so that they can try different combinations, experiment with systems, and develop some chemistry. Fortunately, the referees in the preseason seem to be on board.

    Daniel WagnerSeptember 25, 2018

  • I Watched This (Preseason) Game: Troy Stecher stands out in Canucks loss to Kings

    Growing up, my family didn’t have cable TV, but even if we had, we wouldn’t have been able to watch every single Canucks game, because every game wasn’t televised. At most, we would watch the Canucks on Hockey Night in Canada on CBC, if they deigned to show a Canucks game at all. Occasionally there would be a game on another local channel, but that’s it.

    Daniel WagnerSeptember 25, 2018

  • Who’s left: breaking down the Canucks' remaining preseason battles

    The Canucks’ roster has been cut in half, from 59 at the start of training camp, to 30 heading into Tuesday’s pre-season game against the Los Angeles Kings. That number will be further cut down to 23 before the start of the regular season.

    Daniel WagnerSeptember 24, 2018

  • Camp Cuts: Ashton Sautner placed on waivers, heading to Utica

    On Monday, the Canucks officially cut five players from their roster. We knew about four of them ahead of time, as reports of Jonathan Dahlen, Petrus Palmu, Jalen Chatfield, and Reid Boucher getting cut came out on Sunday. Boucher was the only one of that group that required waivers and he was joined on Monday by defenceman Ashton Sautner. Assuming they clear, Boucher and Sautner will join the Utica Comets in the AHL.

    Daniel WagnerSeptember 24, 2018

  • Camp Cuts: Jonathan Dahlen, Petrus Palmu, Jalen Chatfield, and Reid Boucher are AHL-bound

    The Canucks are inching closer to their 23-man roster for the start of the season, cutting four more players on Sunday, though the team has yet to make it official. The four players heading to Utica to join the Comets are Jonathan Dahlen, Petrus Palmu, Jalen Chatfield, and Reid Boucher.

    Daniel WagnerSeptember 23, 2018

  • I Watched This (Preseason) Game: Flames burn Canucks, but Pettersson picks up points

    It’s becoming evident that there will be games this season where we don’t so much watch the Canucks, but just watch Elias Pettersson.

    Daniel WagnerSeptember 23, 2018

  • Camp Cuts: Kole Lind, Jonah Gadjovich, and six others get their walking papers

    We’re right on the verge of the real roster cuts. The ones that hurt. There are players that Canucks fans desperately want to see on the team that simply won’t make the roster, but are victims of asset management or just not ready.

    Daniel WagnerSeptember 21, 2018

  • I Watched This (Preseason) Game: Canucks' new-look power play connects versus Kings

    Canucks fans have been waiting for this ever since they saw the first highlights of Elias Pettersson blasting one-timers from the right faceoff circle on the power play in Sweden. Imagine it: Brock Boeser on the left, Pettersson on the right, both blasting away. Penalty kills won’t be able to focus their efforts on defending one shooter, but will have to split their attention.

    Daniel WagnerSeptember 21, 2018

  • Camp Cuts: Michael DiPietro heads back to the OHL to break some records

    Throughout training camp and the preseason, PITB is here to explain all the tough cuts the Canucks will need to make to get down to a 23-man roster. Of course, before we get to the tough cuts, there are a few easy ones to make first. Heading into Thursday night’s preseason game against the Los Angeles Kings, the Canucks announced that four players were departing from the roster. The lone player in the system that got the cut was goaltender Michael DiPietro.

    Daniel WagnerSeptember 20, 2018

  • Paper Feature: Several Canucks will get waived; which ones might get claimed?

    As the Canucks start the preseason, they have an unusually high number of rookies with a real shot at making the roster. Specifically, there are four that look potentially NHL-ready: Elias Pettersson, Jonathan Dahlen, Petrus Palmu, and Adam Gaudette.

    Daniel WagnerSeptember 20, 2018

  • I Watched This (Preseason) Game: Comets wearing Canucks jerseys fall to Heat wearing Flames jerseys.

    A friend of mine has a favourite phrase that seems to fit this game: “Oh boy, what a mess.” With most of the Calgary Flames’ veterans in China right now, they iced a lineup heavy with AHL players and young prospects with little chance to make the team. The Canucks followed suit, with only a few players on the ice that could be expected to play on opening night.

    Daniel WagnerSeptember 19, 2018

  • Brendan Gaunce: “This could be a career-changing year”

    Gaunce faces a crossroads amidst tough competition at Canucks training camp.

    Daniel WagnerSeptember 19, 2018

  • I Watched This (Preseason) Game: Pettersson dazzles in preseason debut

    There wasn’t quite the same buzz in the building as there was for Pavel Bure’s Canucks debut, but you could still feel the anticipation in the air. It’s been a long time since the Canucks have had a prospect as exciting as Elias Pettersson and he did not disappoint.

    Daniel WagnerSeptember 19, 2018

  • Elias Pettersson’s talented preseason linemates look like a test

    Since the start of training camp, Elias Pettersson has skated on a line with Sven Baertschi and Nikolay Goldobin. That line is expected to stay intact for the first game of the preseason against the Edmonton Oilers.

    Daniel WagnerSeptember 18, 2018

  • Camp Cuts: Michael Carcone sent down to Utica with several other Comets

    Canucks training camp is coming to a close and the preseason is about to begin. Accordingly, the Canucks have made the first round of cuts to their roster. The Canucks are going to have to make some hard decisions in the next couple weeks that could include trades, putting a talented young player on waivers, or sending down rookies that look NHL-ready.

    Daniel WagnerSeptember 17, 2018

  • Norm Macdonald hates the Vancouver Canucks

    The press tour for Norm Macdonald’s new Netflix show was a disaster. The off-kilter comedian committed gaffe after gaffe, starting with potshots at the #MeToo movement and ill-advised comments about Louis C.K. and Roseanne Barr that seemingly made light of the victims of sexual harassment and racism.

    Daniel WagnerSeptember 17, 2018

  • Nikolay Goldobin has style to spare; this season, he's prepared to bring more substance

    Nikolay Goldobin has fantastic shoes. That’s just a generally true statement. A quick perusal of his Instagram shows a colourful array of sneakers, dress shoes, and boots. Teal, pink, and red are just a few of the colours adorning Goldobin’s feet. At any given moment, Goldobin is likely wearing great shoes.

    Daniel WagnerSeptember 17, 2018

  • Let’s read way too much into line combinations at Canucks training camp

    Travis Green made it clear: training camp wasn’t just going to be bag skates and drills. “We’re going to scrimmage a fair amount in Whistler on top of practicing and conditioning,” said Green, then added, “We’re going to have the lines mixed up a little bit.”

    Daniel WagnerSeptember 14, 2018

  • Travis Green: “If Ben Hutton’s ready to roll, he’s gonna play.”

    Ben Hutton has a clean slate. Last season’s struggles, the ones that led to multiple healthy scratches and just six assists in 61 games? Forgotten. Head coach Travis Green’s harsh criticism of his conditioning? In the past.

    Daniel WagnerSeptember 14, 2018

  • Antoine Roussel out with a concussion, will miss training camp

    On Thursday, Jim Benning and Travis Green were asked if everyone was healthy to start camp. While the Canucks’ GM and head coach paused for a moment, they both confirmed that everyone was cleared to play.

    Daniel WagnerSeptember 14, 2018

  • Paper Feature: The biggest battle at Canucks camp could be for second-line centre

    After Daniel and Henrik Sedin retired last season, the Canucks didn’t attempt to replace them in free agency. There are a couple reasons for that. First, the Sedins are irreplaceable. And second, the Canucks believe that the prospects and young players in their organization have what it takes to step into top-six roles.

    Daniel WagnerSeptember 13, 2018

  • Travis Green as the Canucks head into training camp: “Everyone should feel pressure.”

    It’s hard for Canucks fans to contain their excitement when they see talented prospects like Elias Pettersson, Jonathan Dahlen, and Petrus Palmu hit the ice. The Canucks’ prospect pool is better than it’s ever been, with top-end talent that looks NHL-ready.

    Daniel WagnerSeptember 13, 2018

  • Canucks hope more time in the offensive zone will mean fewer injuries

    The Canucks took a good, hard look at their injury issues this off-season and concluded there wasn’t much they could do. The Canucks felt that most of their injuries last season were unavoidable. They determined that just 6% of their injuries were “avoidable”: things like soft-tissue injuries that could potentially be prevented with better preparation and medical care.

    Daniel WagnerSeptember 12, 2018

  • Jonathan Dahlen likely won’t make the Canucks out of training camp and that’s okay

    In any other season, Jonathan Dahlen would be the most exciting prospect heading to Canucks training camp. We’re talking about the MVP of the Allsvenskan, who lead the league in points-per-game with 44 points in 44 games at the age of 20. He then dominated the playoffs with 8 goals and 14 points in 10 games to lead Timrå IK to promotion to the SHL.

    Daniel WagnerSeptember 12, 2018

  • Young Stars 3 Stars: Canucks vs Jets, September 9, 2018

    After the Canucks prospects delivered a thorough butt-kicking to the Jets prospects on Friday, Sunday’s game was a lot more competitive. It didn’t look like that in the first period, of course. The Canucks jumped out to a 3-0 lead in the opening twenty minutes and it looked like the officials in Penticton would need to evoke the mercy rule to keep things from getting out of hand.

    Daniel WagnerSeptember 10, 2018

  • How much will Jay Beagle, Tim Schaller, and Antoine Roussel help the Canucks penalty kill?

    There weren’t a lot of positives for the Canucks last season, but one of them was the power play. After Brock Boeser was added to the first unit at the left faceoff circle, the power play was a legitimate threat night after night. By the end of the season, the Canucks’ power play was ninth in the NHL, converting on 21.4% of their opportunities. The same cannot be said for the other half of their special teams: the penalty kill.

    Daniel WagnerSeptember 10, 2018

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