Vancouver Canucks Demolish the Chicago Blackhawks 6-2, Is It a Turning Point?
The Canucks owned this game due to specials teams, going an unearthly five for six on the power play, while also running a perfect five for five penalty kill.
Six different Canucks had multi-point nights, led by Henrik Sedin's four points (one goal, three assists) and Daniel Sedin's three points (one goal, two assists).
Conversely, Patrick Kane, Jonathan Toews, Patrick Sharp, Marian Hossa and Dave Bolland, all noted Canuck killers in the past, came up empty.
Kane was the only one to get on the scoresheet, and that was with a penalty for a late hit on Henrik Sedin. Aaron Rome of the Canucks would score on that power play, blowing a snapshot past Cory Crawford.
One Blackhawk who did get on the scoresheet in a major way was Dan Carcillo.
Carcillo was running his mouth earlier about being physical with the Canucks, and as is often the case with Carcillo, he crossed the line. Carcillo ended up with 21 minutes in penalties. He had one official fight against Aaron Volpatti, which was a draw.
And he had another unofficial fight with Rome, which ended with Rome burying Carcillo after he hacked at Loungo after a whistle, and then Rome pummelling Carcillo while he was laying on the ice.
Normally a player being punched repeatedly in the head while they are prone on the ice is a bad thing, but the officials clearly had enough of Carcillo's antics, as they only gave Rome a minor for roughing, while they assessed Carcillo with a minor for roughing, another for unsportsmanlike conduct, and a 10 minute misconduct to eject him from the game.
This game also featured a bout between Kevin Bieksa and Jamal Mayers, another of the goons Chicago had signed last summer.
Now to be fair to Chicago, they were missing Duncan Keith to injury, and any team is going to look worse if they are missing a Norris trophy calibre defenceman. But the Canucks were missing Alex Burrows and Sami Salo, so I figure the injuries pretty much balanced out this game.
This win was a huge victory for the Canucks, as it came against a hated rival. But was it enough to bust the slump the Canucks are in?
There were several signs of the dominant Canucks team of last year in the 6-2 victory, but there were also signs of the inconsistent team that had muddled through this season so far as well.
Notably, Luongo gave up a stinker of a goal to let the Hawks tie the game 1-1 in the first period, with a weak shot from the half boards trickling through his pads. However, he did stand on his head the rest of the night, stopping 38 of 40 shots overall.
On the Hawks second goal, Luongo let out a rebound, which wasn't that bad. But the defence let Marcus Kruger blow by them to snap the rebound top shelf. That looked like the weak defending we saw in St Louis and Minnesota earlier on the road trip.
But the next shift, the Sedins pushed back and set up Jannik Hansen for a tap-in goal to restore the two goal lead. This kind of push back has been lacking from the Canucks most games this year, and was probably the most promising aspect of tonight's victory.
Can the Canucks maintain this level of play, and get above 0.500 and back into the playoff picture?
But the Canucks showed signs of being the dominant team they were last year, so the prognosis is hopeful.
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