I apologize as this entry on last night’s game may not be the best. I wasn’t really in a hockey mood, so I watched but wasn’t paying as close of attention as I should have. And honestly, I just don’t know if I really want to write this blog.
The Coyotes were in Vancouver to take on Luongo and the Canucks. It was a show down between goalies, with Luongo eventually taking the W.
Early in the first Murray gets a breakaway on the PK but couldn’t get a shot off. He was hooked by a Canuck but there was no call (the calls were very one-sided last night). The reason we were in the box was a non-existent hook was called on Hanzal. So we don’t hook, we go to the box… they hook and nothing is called. Yes, I see how that is fair, makes total sense.
Vancouver’s #13 goes after our number 13 and they engage in a “fight”. I call it a “fight” because basically Carcillo was hugged and neither player could get a punch in. Carcillo finally gets his arm free but in doing so, loses his balance and they fall to the ice. Of course, Carcillo is not done yet, he chats all the way to the box and pretty much through his whole penalty. At one point, he actually stands up to talk at the other guy. The other guy was just laughing.
Vancouver scores, making it 1-0.
*TANGENT* Ok, so at this point, we went to commercial and I had to watch this stupid commercial where Sidney Crosby comes out of the picture (from the final game of the Cup finals) and starts talking. Later there was one staring Dion Pahneuf. These were probably some of the worse hockey commercials I have ever seen. The Coyotes get a new marketing guy this season and I think the NHL did too. Annnnnnnd both suck. Ok /tangent
There was some really nice passing from Rhino to Doan and back, good shot on goal but they just couldn’t get it past Luongo. Rhino was just doing a great job tonight with passing and shots, much like his last couple of games.
At the end of the first, Canucks lead 1-0. At the intermission they talked to Murray. I am really liking what he brings to the game. He’s got grit, he blocks shots and he can win face-offs (something much needed on this team – It’s sad when your best face-off man is Doan and he is a RW and doesn’t take that many). Murray may not be pretty, but I am glad Gretz has given him a chance. It was well deserved.
We also got more Jovo-luv during the break. They did a whole little segment were the players praised Jovo. Seriously, does this dude need his ego fed to play well?
We start the second with a crap call on Z. It was a total dive/embellishment on part of the Canucks player. It’s a good thing we have a great PK on the road (I think it was 6th in the NHL).
Then there was the hooking call on Jokinen (who was highly invisible tonight – along with Doan and Mueller – Gretz had to shake things up and change lines a bit). This was another one of those not really a penalty but we didn’t pay the refs as much as Vancouver did situations.
Bryz was actually playing very well tonight, much to my surprise as he looked a little stiff early on. He was covering when needed, not giving up huge rebounds and making some really amazing saves. At the end of the second he totally robbed a Vancouver player with a fantastic glove save and as he stood up, he totally stared the player down. It was classic.
I would say in the second period all players were good defensively but just couldn’t seem to get any offense going. We were struggling to really penetrate the Canucks zone. We just couldn’t keep control of the puck long enough to carry it into the Canucks zone and get a shot off.
At the end of the second, it was still 1-0 Vancouver.
In the third we get a 4 on 4 when Winnik gets into a shoving match with Vancouver. Unfortunately it doesn’t last long as Hanzal is called on a hook. Thankfully for the Coyotes, it was a delayed penalty and they were able to kill it off for about 1:30. When Hanzal went into the box, there was only about 17 seconds left on Winnik’s penalty. Also, it was funny when Winnik’s penalty ended, he came right out of the box but his “friend” on the Canucks didn’t come out of the box. The gate keeper was ready but the player just chilled. Of course, Vancouver had to have a discussion with the ref. Um, hello…your player is just stupid. He apparently wasn’t paying attention. You get what you deserve.
Tiki and Bods had a great break away but damn that Luongo! Bods has by far exceeded my expectations. I knew he would be great, but I am so impressed with him.
Sauer and DMo were helping Bryz out like no other! Sauer was in there whacking pucks away with his stick while DMo was blocking shots like crazy. I don’t think I have ever seen DMo block so many pucks in one game. DMo seems to be back to his normal self. He hasn’t had any glaring errors and hasn’t fallen on his butt in a few games. He was also using his shot from the blue line. This is the DMo we know and love and like to see.
The refs had yet another crap call on one of our players. Sauer was called for hooking (surprise, surprise) when a Sedin lost his balance. Sauer never even touched him with his stick (or anything – there was no contact at all). The Sedin was just trying to do a fancy move and lost his balance. Boo frickin hoo.
I couldn’t believe it; we won two crucial face-offs in a row thanks to Hanzal. He won the face-offs and the pucks just went right to Mueller on the point. We were able to get some good shots through and the guys tried to get the rebounds in the net. Then Jokinen comes in and is able to win the last face-off of the game (seriously, we won 3 in a row… I can’t believe it).
Even though we were able to win the face-off the game was lost when Mueller pulled a Jovo and was unable to keep the puck in the zone. Once it was out, the Coyotes were unable to get it back, losing 1-0. At least the Canucks missed on the empty net.
Up next: Saturday at the Job the Florida Panthers visit, bringing Keith Ballard and Nick Boynton back to me. And on Sunday the Sharks make their first regular season trip to the Job. Hopefully the Coyotes can string together two wins.