The longest road trip for the Vancouver Canucks is over.
Who would’ve thought that they would finish on the road with five wins out of seven games?
The support on the twitter-verse is mostly positive this week, albeit hilarious.
Canucks are third in overall league standings in the first month of the season?! This is lovely, unfamiliar territory for us fans. #goTorts
— Lexi Patton (@lexilinden) October 26, 2013
6/7 teams in the NHL’s Pacific division are at .500 or better. Sorry Deadmonton! :) Go #Canucks
— Q Smith™ (@NWSBQ) October 26, 2013
Henrik ends his run as PIM leader of the Canucks handing it over to??? Brother Daniel.. who got 2 and 10 as time expired.. 20 PIM’s on year
— Blake Price (@blakeprice1040) October 26, 2013
The Sedin Twins’ PIMs would make Dave “Tiger” Williams proud.
At the end of Ryan Kesler’s OT goal against the St. Louis Blues in the final game of the road trip, the twins held their ground after being roughed up by the frustrated Blues squad for most of the game. It just goes to show that they’re not going to be kicked around anymore. Despite being shoved and checked throughout this road trip, Henrik and Daniel managed to fight through the tight checks and scored some much-needed goals to help Vancouver win. Along with some helping hands from Kesler, Chris Higgins, Brad Richardson and Mike Santorelli, this was by far one of the most successful road trips in recent memory.
Canucks Fumble Towards Ecstasy
After fumbling through a tough loss against the Columbus Blue Jackets to start the week, the Canucks went into Long Island with a chip on their shoulders. Just as before, they fell behind early in the game. Unlike Canucks of years past however, they’ve been able to bounce back and steal a victory thanks to Richardson’s OT winner. Coach John Tortorella summed up the game as a brutal victory, quoting:
“I thought it was an absolute mess, right on through. It seems like every time we come into this building — I’ve come here quite a bit with New York — it turns into a cluster. It was that night tonight.”
Two nights later, it was Luongo vs. Schneider part two in Newark, New Jersey. Again, it wasn’t going to be easy for Vancouver. They trailed the Devils for most of the game, but…
Corey Schneider did give his former team a gift, letting the Canucks get goals off his bungled play and letting Daniel Sedin walk in with an impressive shot from off the boards. Luongo made 28 saves along with three great saves in the shootout. Mike Santorelli was the hero in this particular victory.
The final road game took place in St. Louis the next evening. Torts went with backup Eddie Lack in net against the Blues. Unlike the previous starts, the Canucks went out of the gate quickly, scoring early on the well-rested Blues squad that hadn’t played in a week. Kesler’s goal to put them up 2-0 could not have happened without Santorelli’s scintillating assist. Even when St. Louis tied the game, the Sedins & Kesler applied enough offensive pressure to pull out another extra-time victory thanks to Patrik Bergland’s hook on Daniel Sedin.
Canucks Rating: A-
Highs: The supporting cast of Kesler, Higgins, Richardson and Santorelli, along with Zack Kassian and Tom Sestito more than support the Sedin Twins. The offensive lines went out and hit, fought, and scored some timely goals. The games this week may have been close, but they were all victories.
Lows: The road trip is over. Now the Canucks will have to translate their road magic into some important home games starting next Monday against Washington, then Detroit on Wednesday and Toronto on Saturday.
Outlook: A well-deserved break after a long tough road trip. The Canucks managed to collect 11 points out of a possible 14.
A former novice/atom player, timekeeper and fan of the game, Peter has lived and breathed hockey throughout his life, covering hockey happenings in Edmonton, Vancouver, and currently in Saskatchewan. He is now a contributing writer for the Hockey Writers.