The Rematch: Version 2.0

The two combatants from the 2011 Stanley Cup Final meet up for the one and only time this current season. The Vancouver Canucks made their way to the TD Garden in Boston to try and get some redemption in a building that they did not perform well during their visits of last June. This wasn’t for the Stanley Cup, but it was for pride and more so, a little revenge. The Canucks had to come out with a lot more gusto than they did in their previous meetings.

Canucks back in June with a 4-0 defeat at TD Garden during the SFC.- Photo Credit:

After the Stanley Cup Final, many of the Canucks critics brought up the team lacked some testicular fortitude and did not fight back the Big, Bad Bruins. They were criticized that their game wasn’t suited to win a cup (Oh really? Detroit, anyone?) This game would be a measuring stick to see what the Canucks have learned from their Stanley Cup experience in June.

The game itself was more than what many expected between these two teams. The atmosphere at TD Garden was electric. The Bruins and the Canucks entertained the crowd present, the ones watching on TV and I couldn’t keep up with my twitter feed to save my life and that was only the first period! There were fights, lots of chirping and even an ejection (later on rescinded).

The Canucks won this contest, but it seems they will never win the respect of other NHL fans, some media and others around the league, no matter what they do.

Hamhuis and the Canucks win in Beantown. -Photo Credit: Times Colonist

The Good

• Well it’s safe to say winning the game was a great way to leave Boston, since this team hasn’t done so very much in recent memory. A task that is definitely easier said than done.
• The power play accounting for all the goals. The biggest problem for the Canucks during the final series was they weren’t drawing the penalties, even the obvious ones, so they couldn’t put their power play to work.
• Cody Hodgson had one hell of a game. I really see a lot of good things coming from this kid, and I only see him growing. That Calder trophy race is starting to look more like Cody could seriously be a part of it.
• The Canucks out hit the Bruins 24 to 17 in the contest. A stat that many out there thought they would be beaten. Keith Ballard led the way with four hits, giving Alain Vigneault more reason not to bench him.
• The “push back”. Although the Canucks aren’t exactly the most ‘physical’ team in the league, they showed they weren’t going to be pushed around and off their game.

The Bad
• The blue line, for some reason, with the exception of Ballard and Alberts, seemed a little off today. Bieksa looking disinterested in that Marchand play resulting in a goal. Edler looked horrible on the non-call icing play that resulted in a Peverley goal.
• The second period. I am not sure what it is about this Canucks team and their seemingly troubled middle stanza. I always make a joke about the Canucks taking their “second period siesta”, but that didn’t change in this very important game.
• Playing to the whistle. You’d think the Canucks would learn by now that they aren’t going to get the calls a lot of the times that they should, so why stop playing until you actually know what the call is going to be? Pay attention to the game boys.

The Ugly or at times, The Confusing

• The first period melee between the two teams when Thornton decided to go after Burrows whom I’m assuming chirped at the Bruins bench with undoubtedly some ‘choice words ‘ words. It resulted in Milan Lucic jumping in, being thrown out of a game and left the Canucks with very few forwards to be eligible on the ice for a good amount of time.
• The Sedins on a penalty killing shift. I know it wasn’t that bad, but it wasn’t very pretty and in all honestly, I was a little nervous. The Sedins? Killing penalties?
• The clipping play of Brad Marchand on Sami Salo. Sami Salo of all people! We, as a fan base, have bets, which game he is going to be injured or if he will injure himself in the off-season. He didn’t need to be helped with a dirty play like that.

The game lived up to all the hype that happened prior through the media, the fans, and the crazy twitter feuds between both fan bases. It had everything and then some. It had all the fixings for a great serving of “hockey gumbo” but the biggest thing that has confused this blogger and social media enthusiast was…why wasn’t it on a marquee time slot and nationally televised in both Canada and the United States? CBC? NBC? WTH?

The Canucks got some pay back, the Bruins were still big, bad and bullying, but who outside the two regions really got a good look at it? I guess we’ll have to see if these two teams meet again in the finals.
Justine Galo

Twitter: @Aviewfromabroad

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  1. tina says

    To one of the bad or thee ugly/confusing I would add losing 4th liner Andrew Ebbett to that broken clavicle (collarbone). The Canucks are looking a little thin on depth in that department.

    • Justine Galo says

      Yes that was another ugly. Thank you for replying and adding that. I had a friend who had a broken collar bone before and it’s not fun. Best goes out to Andrew Ebbett.

  2. Tomcat201 says

    It was a great game today and wasnt shown on a major network in prime time because the NFL playoffs start todat same thing for the next couple of weekends.

    • Justine Galo says

      I understand that as well, but at the same time, if you’re going to carry a brand (especially in the US) then you need to bring out all the games that would garner good spot light.

      The football games started AFTER the start time of this game. What boggles me more is CBC’s lack of interest in this match up. SCF participants and they didn’t bother?

      • Tomcat201 says

        I couldn’t understad that either. I was looking for the game and nothing. Sportsnet covered this like it was a big game, but CBC barely gave it biased coverage during Coaches Corner.

  3. Farhan Lalji says

    One thing I will mention:

    I actually wasn’t surprised at all that the Canucks outhit the Bruins (24-17). Why am I not surprised?

    Because – they actually OUTHIT the BRUINS in the Cup Finals last year!!!! Something that for whatever reason, has been overlooked by numerous hockey experts. In the 7 games played last year, the Canucks actually outhit the Bruins in 4, maybe 5, of those games. In Games 5 and Games 7, the Canucks outhit the Bruins by a margin of 47-26 and 49-26 respectively.

    While it’s true that the Bruins may have had higher QUALITY hits during the finals, the Canucks had the quantity. Boston’s “superior” physical play isn’t what caused them to beat us last season….in my opinion. It was a big factor, but there were other bigger factors involved.

    1) Tim Thomas. Thomas was the reason why the Bruins didn’t get smoked during the first 2 games. Thomas ensured that the first 2 games between the Canucks and Bruins were dead even….and for the most part, it was.

    2) Boston’s positional play. After Game 2, this is one area where Boston became absolutely BRILLIANT at (and it has continued on for this season). Very rarely were Boston players out of position. Vancouver almost had ZERO room to skate in Boston’s end…..and didn’t get very good looks against an already exceptional goalie in Thomas. Boston on the other hand, had all sorts of room to razzle and dazzle in Vancouver’s end.

    As much as I hate to admit it, this trend actually continued today. 5 on 5, the Canucks couldn’t skate much in Boston’s end and didn’t get a whole lot of good looks on Thomas…..while Boston had lots of good looks at Schneider. Take away the special teams, and Boston outscored us 3-0.

    Farhan’s conclusion: It was a great win for the Canucks today and I am happy, but I still think that Boston has the better team as of this writing……and it has very little to do with the fact that they are physically superior to us. Their positional play, 5 on 5, is quite possibly the greatest that I have ever seen. It is comparable to that New Jersey Devils team from 2003.

    • Justine Galo says

      Thanks awesome feedback. Love it when you bring your insight to the front page and not just in the forums.

      I agree, take away the PP and it’s a different game. Next question, could the Canucks take something from this experience?

      Babysteps…they won in Boston, that’s a huge improvement. Next…learn to play them 5 on 5.

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