Canucks Weekly Fares: Week 17 Recap

By: Brayden Fengler / February 12, 2024  

Game 50: February 6th vs. The Carolina Hurricanes

The Canucks got an early jump on the trade deadline over the All-Star break and swapped Kuzmenko, a first-round pick and Hunter Brzustewicz for Elias Lindholm.

Lindholm took the ice for the first time (other than the All-Star game) as a Canuck on a line with Elias Pettersson and Ilya Mikheyev. 

In what would become a weeklong trend, the Canucks gave up the first goal when Jordan Martinook opened the scoring for Carolina shorthanded. 

Martinook was the first guy into the Canucks end to recover a puck and Sam Lafferty seemed to forget Martinook existed and let him get the net entirely uncontested and score the game’s opening goal.

Not long after, Conor Garland put a shot off the iron. It was a great look, but not good enough.

Another close call by the third line came when Joshua was left entirely uncovered in the offensive end.

Late in the first period, the new guy would score to tie the game redirecting a shot from Quinn Hughes. This was a great tip. The shot was going well wide when Lindholm managed to get a stick on it. Immediately it looks like Lindholm is going to make a great addition, at the very least on the powerplay.

Garland continued to be the star of the show despite Lindholm scoring in his debut, like here when Michael Bunting gets angry at a penalty call and tries to smash his stick on the ice. Because Garland is so small, he doesn’t see him and nearly chops him in half like a nice piece of cedar.

The Canucks almost scored the go-ahead goal with about five minutes remaining in the second period when… yep you guess it, Conor Garland nearly tucks the puck away on the backhand.

The Canucks took their first lead of the game when Hughes and Lindholm combined for another redirected powerplay goal.

At this point, it is becoming clear that Lindholm’s ability to get his stick on pucks in front of the net is going to be an asset for this team moving forward. Even his teammates are starting to notice.

The Canes tied the game with a powerplay goal from Sebastian Aho as Juulsen went down to block the shot, Aho used him as a screen and changed the angle of the shot to beat Demko.

The go-ahead goal came off of JT Miller’s stick. It was a gift of a goal, when Kochetkov mishandled the puck, Boeser had a wide-open net and whiffed on it. The puck landed on Miller’s stick and he shot it into the empty net.

The Canucks locked down the rest of the third period and collected a win against the Canes. The Canes are one of the best teams in the East, and just in case you had any doubt, the Canucks can hang with the best of the best… usually.

The Canucks come out of the All-Star break with a regulation win to kick off their road trip.

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Game 51: February 8th vs. The Boston Bruins

Look. I don’t want to write about this game and I know you don’t want to read about it. But here we are. I have an obligation, and you have a fascination. Should we just rip this bandaid off?

The Canucks and Bruins are first and second in the league standings so this was touted as a heavyweight match-up and a serious measuring stick for both teams. I just really don’t like the measurements this showed us.

32 seconds into the game, the Canucks gave up another short-handed goal. This is how the game opened in Carolina, and it is evidently how it opened in Boston.

To make matters worse, the goal scorer was none other than Brad Marchand.

So this is how the game is going to go eh? Alright, let’s keep going.

The next goal was another short-handed Boston goal. This time Danton Heinen beats out EP’s backcheck and scores off the rush.


Something something something Chaos Giraffe.

Pastrnak breaks his stick on a shot and then Tyler Myers hot potatoes the puck right into his own net to make it 3-1.

In the first 50 seconds of the second period, Pavel Zacha scores the Bruin’s fourth goal of the evening. Meanwhile, the Canucks have four total shots. The Canucks laid an egg, and that egg laid two more eggs.

It goes without saying, the Canucks were not having their finest hour on Thursday.

The Canucks had a few chances in the final two periods, and so did Boston, but there weren’t any goals scored for either team. The game ended with a final score of 4-0.

Höglander did score a goal but it was immediately waived off as a high stick. The only thing that was left to talk about in this game was the pain and hurt feelings that came back from losing to Boston in the fashion we did.

The Canucks are supposed to be better than Boston, and they were not Thursday night.

Game 52: February 10th vs. The Detroit Red Wings

Looking to bounce back after their sizable loss to Boston two days before, the Canucks continued their road trip in Detroit. Unfortunately, they more splattered than bounced.

Less than a minute into the opening frame Lucas Raymond used his speed to enter the Canucks zone and walk right around Tyler Myers with ease to deliver the home team their first goal.

This early change in score was not however reflective of how the rest of the period turned out. Detroit’s only goal in the period was the Raymond goal, and thankfully for Vancouver, they stayed competitive in shot opportunities and control of play for the rest of the period.

Both clubs shared two powerplay opportunities aside, but neither team made use of these chances. At the end of the first frame, the only reason why the score was anything but zero aside was because of Tyler Myers and his inability to stop Detroit’s first rush of the game.

Early in the second the Canucks finally got on the board. In Detroit’s zone, Pettersson made a cross-ice pass to Filip Hronek at the blue line, Hronek slapped a shot on net and Nils Höglander with a gentle tip sent it into the back of the net.

This was an easy goal for Höglander as Detroit’s Jake Walman took out the right leg of his goalie Alex Lyon causing him to fall to the ice. This was in part thanks to the net front presence of Pius Suter.

Hronek was involved in the next Canucks goal as well. After serving a penalty for high-sticking on Dylan Larkin, Hronek found himself exiting the box with the perfect chance to be sprung on a breakaway. Ilya Mikheyev spotted Hronek leaving the box, sent a pass up the ice, and after a little far-side tuck the Canucks were in the lead 2-1.

The Canucks weren’t done yet in the second period either. In the final minutes of the frame, Pettersson found himself in the right place at the right time, and after a slightly wide shot from Suter hit the backboards, Pettersson was able to get his stick on the puck as it slid back towards the slot, and just got it past Lyon’s blocker.

Early in the third, as the Canucks found themselves on the penalty kill thanks to a Nils Höglander tripping call, Detroit was able to use this chance to put themselves back in the game. A Daniel Sprong pass to Patrick Kane in front of the Canucks net resulted in a quick shot from Kane beating Casey DeSmith along the ice.

Only a few minutes later, Walman was made up for the fact that he performed a slew foot on his own goalie earlier in the game. While in the Canucks zone, Walman let a slapshot go from the point that found Michael Rasmussen’s stick and then the back of the net. This game had a slot of tip-in goals and weird bounces, and after this latest one, the score was now three all.

Both teams failed to change the score before the end of regulation, so the game headed on into overtime. Early in the frame, Walman had a partial break on the net which began at centre ice but was interfered with by Quinn Hughes who cross-checked him from behind.

Walman was awarded a penalty shot, and unfortunately for the Canucks he made quick work of DeSmith and then did a little Griddy just to rub it in.

Game 53: February 11th vs. The Washington Capitals

The Canucks continued their road trip the very next day after playing Detroit as they faced off against the Washington Capitals on Super Bowl Sunday.

Unfortunately for the Canucks, this game started similarly to their Saturday game as very early in the first period the home team got on the board. After a dump-in by Rasmus Sandin, Nicolas Aube-Kubel was first to retrieve the puck along the far boards. Aube-Kublel quickly centred the puck and a well-placed stick by Nic Dowd deflected the puck into the net past Demko on a sharp angle.

The Capitals continued to test Demko after the opening goal. Most notably, minutes after the Capitals opened the scoring, Demko was forced to make a sprawling pad save on a great T.J. Oshie opportunity that saw the Capitals #77 dive to make the shot attempt only to be denied by Demko.

By the halfway mark of the frame, the Canucks tied it up, as an ignored Conor Garland walked in uncontested and snapped a shot blocker side, beating Kuemper.

Heading into the second period both teams exchanged a fairly even amount of chances with neither club looking like they were the outright leader controlling the play. It wouldn’t be until the Capitals decided to repeat their goal-scoring method from the first period, that the tides started to change.

During the Capitals’ possession in the Canucks’ end, while Dylan Strome had the puck at the point, Alex Ovechkin rushed to the net, and Strome was found Ovi’s stick for a well-placed tip in that put the home team back in the lead.

The Canucks were much quicker to respond after this goal, and seemingly as always, it was Canucks depth to the rescue. Höglander lead the charge on the play that lead to the Canucks’ second goal. A high-speed rush from the neutral zone saw Höglander enter the Capitals’ end, and pass the puck to Elias Pettersson who then quickly dropped it back to Höglander. Höglander took the puck with speed and on the sharpest of all angles sent the puck up over the shoulders of Kuemper on the backhand.

Towards the final half of the third period, Demko kept his team in the game, making several sprawling saves, including one in the final minute of play where he lost his stick in the process.

Regardless of the heightened pressure by the Capitals towards the end of the period, however, Demko and the Canucks were able to keep the game at two goals aside, and once again a road game required overtime.

Initially, it looked like this overtime period was not going to end well for the Canucks as the Capitals earned several chances early. But just when it looked like we were headed to a shootout, Washington’s Connor McMichael tried to pass it to John Carlson who was on his way out of the Capitals’ end. The pass ended up being misplaced and after going just behind Carlson, it found Miller’s tape right in front of the net.

As Miller does, he took the most of this opportunity, snapping the puck blocker side and ending the game 3-2 in the Canucks favour, avoiding a shootout by just a handful of seconds.