There seemed to be a chip on the shoulder of the Vancouver Canucks when the game against the Los Angeles Kings started on Monday night. There was a fight within moments of the drop of the puck and the tough and physical play landed the Canucks in the penalty box a lot. Their toughness and NHL‘s best penalty kill came out on top however getting the better of the Kings throughout the game when they were shorthanded.
The first period included nearly 11 minutes of shorthanded time for the Canucks and they still finished the period with more shots and generally better play. The only things they did wrong in the entire game were not being able to solve goalie Jonathan Quick of the Kings and one little mistake at the beginning of the third period that cost them the game.
It was very odd in that the Canucks seemed to be so physical that they put themselves in a bad situation but then would only rally through that and turn the momentum around on the Kings. Their masterful game play held the Kings to three shots from the end of the 11 minutes of power play in the first period to the flurry at the very end of the second. Honestly the Canucks have a ton they could be proud of if they had just snuck a couple passed Quick.
The biggest problem from this game for the Canucks is that they lost for the fourth time in four games to a close rival in the Kings. Losses like this and the two points it cost them will matter very soon as will the fact that they seem to be unable to beat this team. The rough and tough play seemed to be a very good game plan for them but it just didn’t work. If I were the Canucks coaches I would try to convince the guys to repeat the same type of game play minus the unbelievable amount of penalty minutes going forward.