Where to even begin with this game? Was it a hockey game? Or was it a performance art piece demonstrating how not to play hockey? I mean, it was less a hockey game and more a two hour dick measuring contest. I generally like my hockey to be heavy on the scoring chances and low on the feeling of “someone is about to get stabbed on the ice”.
I think the most entertaining moment (for me) was when the refs confused Henrik and Daniel and sent Henrik to the box to serve Daniel’s penalty. It got even more wacky immediately following this when Daniel then proceeded to help kill off his own penalty.
But there were certainly some items to add to the pro column for the Canucks besides that. The defence suddenly looked sharp and competent, holding the Kings to not too many shots. This was a far cry from the recent defensive play where they all looked like they had been cryogenically frozen and then thawed out to play defence for the very first time in their lives. It was nice to have Alex Edler back in the lineup, at least by the eyeball test. Oh and the penalty kill. Wowee. You could write a sonnet about the Canucks penalty kill. Shall I compare thee to an ice-y day?
In the con column, well, the offence. The Canucks current offensive line up is where the dreams of all little pucks go to die. Hurry back Alex Burrows. Go on a goal hunting mission David Booth. You are our only hopes.
On a slightly different tangent, the Canucks could be an interesting case study in how society’s constricting ideas of masculinity are harmful. The 2011 Canucks were speedy, flashy, and fun to watch, yet didn’t have much traditional “brute force”. Cue the cup final loss to the Boston Bruins and the irritating narrative that the Canucks are JUST NOT TOUGH ENOUGH. RAWR. This narrative didn’t die down when people looked at Tim Thomas’ gaudy save percentage against the Canucks. Oh no. It simply picked up steam. And now look what you’ve done, society. Because the Canucks felt like they needed to get MORE MANLY AND GRITTIER, you have unleashed Tom Sestito, he of the seconds of ice time and countless penalty minutes onto the world. I hope you’re happy.
I will admit, I do have some conflicting feelings with the Tom Sestito incident myself. I don’t like goons on my hockey teams. I think The Code comes from a bizarre fever dream that an enforcer wrote down one time. And then when a player runs the Sedins, I turn into some kind of mutant offspring of She Hulk and Don Cherry. It’s something I need to work on, I realize.
But if the Canucks find some scoring again, and control their Tom Sestitos, there’s still plenty of time to make this a decent if not extraordinary season.