Canucks Weekly Fares: Canucks Clinch Pacific, Podkolzin Extention, and The First Playoff Game

By: Brayden Fengler / April 22, 2024  

Canucks Extinguish the Flames

The Canucks played the Calgary Flames on Tuesday for the final time of the season. Thatcher Demko made his return to the crease after missing time due to an injury. With a win on Tuesday, the Canucks would officially clinch the Pacific Division title. So while there wasn’t much to play for, there was everything to play for.

I’ll keep this light, we are here for the playoffs, not the regular season, but just in case you missed it, the scoring opened with Tyler Myers open on the wing beating Markstrom cleanly. Oh did I mention it was also short-handed? Just like we all expected.

Next up, Pettersson and Höglander teamed up for a nice passing play to put the Canucks up 2-1.

Dakota Joshua scored his 18th of the season next putting the Canucks up 3-1 on the Flames

The Flames scored in the third to bring the game within two, but JT Miller made sure to pour some water on the fire with a nice goal.

The Canucks won the game 4-1. As a result, they wound up…

Clinching the Pacific Division

With the Canucks win over Calgary on Tuesday night Vancouver secured themselves as the best team in the Pacific Division. The final placement of many teams in the west was still up in the air before Tuesday night as there was technically room for Vancouver to be passed in the Pacific by Edmonton, or for Vancouver to beat out Dallas for not just the division title but the conference title as well.

With a decisive 4-1 win over Calgary Vancouver at least secured themselves as the number one team in the Pacific. positioning themselves to either play L.A., Vegas, or Nashville depending on how the remaining days of NHL hockey shook out.

The following day, the out-of-town scoreboards answered all remaining questions for the Canucks as the Dallas Stars won out in their final regular season game against St. Louis, dashing any chance of the Canucks finishing the season as best in the west.

With Wednesday night’s results, it locked a Canucks, Nashville first round. Nashville is technically the first wild card team and on paper should be the worst of the two wild card options to get to play against, with the other being Vegas. However as Vegas enters their first round in Dallas with Mark Stone back in the line-up, it seems as though Vancouver may have benefited from finishing second in the Western Conference, and being awarded a Nashville match-up.

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Canucks Take on Jets for Final Game of the Season

At the end of last season, all we wanted was to watch the Canucks play meaningful games in March and April. Unfortunately, there was still one meaningless game for the Canucks to play. By game 82, the Canucks had already clinched the Pacific Division title and their playoff opponent, the Nashville Predators. The game against the Jets was meaningless. So much so, that both teams rested their stars for the playoffs.

The Canucks rested Boeser, Miller, Hronek and Cole. The Jets rested Dillon, Namestnikov, Lowry, Morrissey, Scheifele, Connor and Hellebyuck.

Because this was essentially a preseason game, I will not get into the weeds. But Conor Garland scored the first goal with a wrist shot for his 20th goal of the season.

Elias Lindholm scored a tip goal on the powerplay in the second period. This was a good goal to score in the final game of the season. Lindholm hasn’t been the most productive version of himself since arriving in Vancouver, largely due to injury, but it was good to see him score again. One of the Canuck’s greatest strengths this postseason is Miller, Pettersson and Lindholm down the middle, and if Lindholm can get his offensive touch back, it makes the Canucks significantly more dangerous.

The Canucks went on to lose the game 4-2, ending the regular season record at 50-23-9. Demko had played in Calgary and again in Winnipeg, allowing him to shake off any rust he may have had from his downtime. Garland got his 20th, and 47th point of the season and Lindholm got a little momentum rolling for himself. That is all you’re looking for out of a game like this. On to the Playoffs.

Vasily Podkolzin Extention

After topping the Pacific Division on Tuesday, locking a Nashville first-round on Wednesday, the Canucks had more news to break on Thursday. The Canucks announced that they have agreed to terms with Vasily Podkolzin on a new two-year contract extension.

Podkolzin’s new contract will see the young Russian player earning $1M a year over the next two years, a $75k annual raise compared to his current entry-level contract.

Pokolzin played just 19 regular season games with Vancouver this year, as the bulk of his season was spent in Abbotsford with 44 games played on the year. For the big club this season Podkolzin only registered two assists. However, in the AHL Podkolzin finished the year with 28 points nearly evenly divided between goals and assists.

Podkolzin still has a lot more to prove and he will now have two more seasons to try and prove it in. A $75k raise is never a bad thing, but Podkolzin is likely hoping to earn a bit more of a substantial bump by the time his contract extension is up for renewal.

Canucks vs Predators Game 1

Here we are folks, the playoffs are here. We are a game into what is hopefully a long run of 16 wins. The Canucks entered the ice at Rogers Arena to U2 and it was electric. The fans heard Rick Tocchet’s request for them to be loud.

Early, Thatcher Demko made what might be the save of the playoffs, only two and a half minutes into Game 1.

Oh, that is the Demko we are going to get? Okay, we might be on to something here folks.

Jason Zucker opened the scoring for the series.

There were only 10 total shots in the first period, but it wasn’t a boring period. It was a sound and physical start to what will be an exciting series.

Lindholm tied the game with a beautiful wrist shot.

Oh, that is the Lindholm we are going to get? Okay, we might be on to something here folks.

This is exactly what you hoped for when acquiring Lindholm. For a while, it looked like Lindholm didn’t have the offensive touch the Canucks wanted, but tonight he proved it he still has it in him. He used Josi as a screen for the shot and scored a goalscorer’s goal off the rush.

O’Reilly retook the lead.

The Canucks entered the second period trailing 2-1. But the Captain, Quinn Hughes brought the Canucks back to even with a wrist shot from a distance. The jury is still out if Suter got a piece of it or not, but regardless, the game was tied.

Oh, that is the Hughes we are going to get? Okay, we might be on to something here folks.

12 seconds later, Dakota Joshua gave the Canucks a lead.

The next goal? Dokata Joshua with an empty net goal to put the game out of reach.

Oh, that is the Joshua we are going to get? Okay, we might be on to something here folks.

The Canucks held on to take the game 4-2 and an early lead in the series. The Canucks play game two Tuesday night.

Oh, That is the Canucks we are going to get? Okay, we might be on to something here folks.