Monday, December 31, 2007

Mike Keenan's travelling apology show

It's match #5 of the Canucks and Flames tonight at the Saddlesoredome in Cowtown, and two things are becoming apparent: 1) Mike Keenan and Mikka Kiprusoff are headed for a showdown that GM Darryl Sutter will have to solve, and 2) Keenan has a book FULL of excuses for why they have dropped 4 straight to the Canucks.

"The first game here was in overtime and went their way," said head coach Mike Keenan. "The second game here, I thought Roberto Luongo (who made 36 saves) probably won the game for them. The third game, I thought there was an indiscretion in league scheduling -- we played a 5 o'clock game (in Vancouver) after we had played the night before (in Edmonton). They sat and they were rested. I didn't think -- and I still don't think -- that's what the competition would want in the NHL.

"Then we outplayed them fundamentally in the last game (Thursday at GM Place) but they were able to find a way to win. We gave up 20 shots -- that's a pretty good road game. Everybody knows that Kipper (Miikka Kiprusoff) didn't have his best night. What are you going to do?"

He is trying to put a rosy little spin on it, but what it boils down to is in a head to head battle of goaltenders, Luongo has simply been better, the Canucks best players have been better than the Flames best, and good teams will find a way to win. I love the quip about the "indiscretion in league scheduling". Is that like the "indiscretion that saw us play in Edmonton then fly to Minnesota the next night (and win, behind a Markus Naslund hat trick)? You would expect Mike Keenan of all people to not want to BS the fans of Calgary, but to serve this up as though it were a valid reason they are 0-4 against the Canucks is insulting to the Flames' fans intelligence. And that is saying something. Sure they may win tonight (we played last night, so we get to use the excuse, right Mike?), but it's been a great season so for for the boys in blue, so celebrate tonight, and all the best in 08 from all of us at WAACH!

Monday, December 24, 2007

Avalanche 3 Canucks 1

Kind of disappointing to see the let-down in the 3rd, but I have a feeling that this is still a very tired team, and it sure looked like it in the last period. Perhaps a little bit of an emotional dip after the big shootout win the night before in Phoenix, but still as Canucks fans we have little to complain about. We have 44 points, are in 4th in the West and our goalie is playing even better than he did last year. I would also like to point out that the Philadelphia Flyers now sit in 13th place in the East. Yes they are 2 points out of 8th, but it is encouraging for the bet I have against my buddy from work, that we head into the Christmas break with an 8 point lead.
We are taking a little break from the podcasts (as you may have noticed) but should be back and ready to go on Saturday. We will update the blog though while we are in Kamloops.

To all the listeners, and everyone who stops by the blog to see what we have to say, Laurie & I wish you all the best this holiday season, make sure it's happy and safe. Go Canucks Go!

Saturday, December 15, 2007

If I could have just one wish...

(With sincerest apologies to Steve Martin)

If I could have just one wish, it would be that this would be the year the Vancouver Canucks finally raise the Stanley Cup.

If I could have just 2 wishes, the first would be the Canucks winning the Stanley Cup, and the 2nd would be that all hockey announcers would stop saying "Boy, I bet he'd like that one back" after a goalie lets in a soft one, because it drives Laurie crazy.

If I could have just three wishes, the first is the Canucks and the Cup, the 2nd is banning 'Boy I bet he'd like that one back' forever, and the third would be for the Calgary Flames to have to deal with the kind of injuries we have had this year.

If I could have just 4 wishes, the first is the Cup, 2nd is no more blatantly obvious statements, third is a rash of injuries for the Flames, and the 4th wish would be for the Flyers to get a taste of their own medicine.

If I could ... hmm.

You know what? I think I will stick with 1 wish. Ok, two. But that's it.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

episode 60 and 61

Episode 60: the No Panic Episode here
Episode 61:Did I or did I not tell you this would happen? Ok, I don't think anyone predicted Jason jaffrey and Mason Raymond would have the kind of game they did, but the Canucks marched into Anaheim and left with another win over the defending Cup champs. No time to sit and admire it, they've got those pesky Sharks tonight, pregame show right now on WAACH

or here

Sunday, December 9, 2007

The Penalty Shot

Will bring the post-game wrap up later... in the meantime here is the penalty shot of year, the reigning mvp vs. the best damn goalie in the NHL

Saturday, December 8, 2007

Hockey School: Keep your head up

A little karma for his elbow throwing? I like to think so...

Episode 58 Canucks vs. Penguins pregame

It's sad that the NHL's schedule geniuses allowed this to happen, but the day has finally arrived: In his 3rd season in the NHL, Sidney Crosby is finally in Vancouver to play the Canucks. Can Sid the Kid and the Penguins sweep Western Canada, or will Roberto Luongo stand tall for the Canucks tonight... Canucks and Penguins pregame show right now... on WAACH


Also I will be co-hosting NUCKS TALK radio live this afternoon, so make sure and check it out, We go online live at 4pm Pacific, 7pm Eastern time. I mean hey, you really didn't want to watch the Leafs again, right?

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Episode 56 up...

It's back to business for the Vancouver Canucks as they hit the road, they're in the Windy City tonight, as the Hawks will be looking for a little payback after getting shutout by the Canucks last month, We have your pregame show as well as a bit of controversy brewing over Mr. Canuck Trevor Linden, all on this episode of WAACH
listen here

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Luongo NHL 1st star of the week

Some accolades from the league for his strong play in November. Our boy Bobby was named 1st star of the week, and 2nd star for the month of November. Let's hope he continues the strong play (as do the Canucks) as they roll into Chicago tomorrow...

A couple suspensions handed down by the league yesterday, Nashville's Scott Nichol got 5 games for his crosscheck to the face of Patrice Brisebois of Montreal... Nichol is a 4 or 5 time repeat offender, so you have to think eventually the league will start making the penalty more severe, right? Speaking of late reactions, Philadelphia's Riley Cote was given 3 games for his elbow on Matt Niskanen late in the Flyers' loss to the Stars on Saturday. They also warned the team that further suspensions could result in penalties directed at the team, though it was not made specific what those penalties might be. Here's the problem with that, besides the fact it should have been issued last time a Flyer was suspended. This was the perfect opportunity to apply that penalty. Coach John Stevens, who has tried to portray himself as an innocent in all this, insisting that they don't play dirty and letting his players parrot the now almost comical "I was just finishing my check" mantra, had Riley Cote on the ice with less than 5 minutes in a game that the Flyers were trailing by 3 goals. It is common in the NHL to pull the goalie with a 2 goal deficit to try and salvage a tie. Apparently with the Flyers, 3 goals is not only something they cannot overcome (and why then did you bring in Daniel Briere?), but cause to send out a player whose some purpose is to fight. Nashville scored 3 in the last 9 minutes against Montreal, surely the Flyers could have given it a run, right? It's all about perception, and the Flyers simply aren't convincing anyone these days, that the Broad Street Bullies Mark II campaign isn't on in the City of "Brotherly Love". They have accounted for half of the suspensions handed down by the NHL, and the total number of games? 52, while the rest of the NHL's suspended is 12. I want to see it happen again though, just to see if the Flyers will try and rock the boat, and to see if the NHL actually has the balls to stand up to a franchise that is making a mockery of the the rule book.

Sunday, December 2, 2007

Minnesota 2 Vancouver 1

Well, it had to end sometime. No, I'm not talking about the shutout streak. I am referring to the strong effort we have seen from the Canucks over the last month. It simply wasn't there for most of the night, and when it did show up, it was with not nearly enough time left on the clock for it to matter. Though some will look at this game as a failure, Roberto Luongo was still very good tonight. We were due for an off night, and though this wasn't the prime night for it (is there ever?) it is out of our system, and we can focus on a tough back to back against Chicago and Nashville this week. It's a tough sled the next couple weeks, with a number of road games and just Saturday's game against the Penguins at home. Congrats should go to Mike Brown, for a great 1st goal in his NHL career. If I sound like I am not too disappointed, I'm not. This team has given us a lot to cheer about recently, and as frustrating as it was, things are still looking good in Canucksville. What did you expect from someone as 'biased' as I am.

Episode 55

Our pregame show, a recap of last night's action and a look back at an amazing week for Luongo and the Canucks

We're just not that into you...

It's another game against the Wild, and as has been their style lately, they are using the press to convey their love/hate relationship with the Canucks. Micheal Russo of the Minneapolis/St. Paul Star-Tribune has dropped the Mother of All Bombshells: The Canucks are one of the dirtiest teams in the league, and it's their agitators that are hurting the players in the league. I was surprised to see they didnt have aerial photos of our agitator training facilities housed in rail cars, or sworn affidavits from a guy that used to sell popcorn at GM Place and Dave Nonis' paperboy.

The article is laughable, grasping at straws in an attempt to show that players who try to get other players off their game is something just a few teams do, and gosh darn it the Canucks are among the worst. "The thing is: Why's the NHL worrying about Boogaard when Matt Cooke, Ryan Kesler and Alex Burrows are the ones who run around every night? Is it possible that the NHL is this unaware of how the Canucks, back to face the Wild today, and several other teams have turned agitating into an art?" A nice compliment, but these guys are hardly in the league of Kenny 'The Rat' Linseman or Esa Tikkanen. Cooke is widely known as a top-class agitator, I will give them that, but labeling Kesler as dirty with his (gasp!) 18 penalty minutes this season is a fine example of sensationalistic journalism, and nothing else. I love the talking point thrown in about Boogaard, how he has never been suspended for running someone from behind. Russo is right, he hasn't. It's kind of hard to get suspended when you spend nearly 57 minutes a night on the bench. They insist Cooke's hipcheck on Nick Schultz was an attempt to take out his knees, but the replay showed while the hit was a bit low, it wasn't nearly that malicious. Cooke has been a dirty player in the past, but Canucks coach Alain Vigneault seems to have reigned in Cooke, showing him more ice time in exchange for a more controlled style of play, and staying out of the penalty box. Brian Rolston comments "The problem is [agitators] play this way because they can't do anything else," The problem is that every team has players like this in their lineup, even though they don't like to admit it. Stephane Veilleux is not in the Wild's lineup because he will challenge Marion Gaborik for the team lead in scoring. The best part of the whole article is the re-telling of the Gaborik/Kesler incident: "The most productive agitators are the ones who subtly play on the precipice of crossing the line and don't get caught. They make an impact because they antagonize and frustrate players such as Marian Gaborik, who finally had enough of the pesky Kesler and elbowed him in the head last month.

Kesler, an agitator who's also a quality player, skated away. Gaborik skated to the penalty box."

Oh, I get it now. We should just let Gaborik go to the net and not check him. Frustrating him is bad, bad, BAD! Besides, if we do, this star player will lose his cool and take a run at you, leaving his feet to elbow you in the head. My memory is a little hazy at times, but it seems to me that this is what the NHL really needs to worry about, and not guys like Ryan Kesler playing hardnosed defense. The Wild are as guilty as any team in trying to draw penalties. It's part of the game. But they need to complain about it, because some rivalries need a kick in the pants to make it interesting for the fans. Their fans, at least.

So this afternoon Mattias Ohlund returns to Minnesota for the first time since the incident. There will be much histrionics from the fans, attempts to extract some measure of revenge will be taken. If the Wild were smart (and judging by this article and the rantings of some of their fan base one has to wonder), they would spend more time trying to figure how to beat us for the first time this year, something no one in the Northwest Division has been able to do, save for two shootouts to the Oilers. Pregame podcast will be posted shortly... make sure to check out other past editions while you're there!

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

What's 6'4", 245 lbs and completely invisible?

That would be Todd Bertuzzi. While the media tried their best to hype the return of the embattled former Canuck, Todd Bertuzzi's first visit to GM Place since being traded to Florida for Roberto Luongo was so underwhelming that if you hadn't been told he was playing, you wouldn't have known. Bertuzzi was a subdued -2, his only real splash was a breakaway on Luongo, fired wide as the Canucks goalie came out to challenge the hulking winger. Like the trade, we also won the confrontation. Luongo was at his finest in the first as the Ducks threw everything they had at the Canucks in the first. The second period was a different story, as the Ducks began a bizarre self-destruction parade to the penalty box, led by Chris Pronger, who went out of his way to steal any thunder Big Bert might have mustered by playing one of the dirtiest games in recent memory. And for Pronger,that's saying something. His worst offense was the blatant crosscheck to the ribs of Ryan Kesler, who had arms raised celebrating his first of 2 goals on the evening. The hit was late, on an unsuspecting player, and cowardly. I doubt he will get suspended, but he is definitely deserving. The first goal however was the big story of the game. After playing cat & mouse with Randy Carlyle for the first period, Canucks coach Alain Vigneault finally managed to get Naslund & the Sedins out for a shift away from the Ducks checking line, and the wrist shot goal by Naslund was a classic, especially because he skated away from his check, Mr. Invisible to get the goal. The Ducks and their fans complained about the officiating, but really, between the hooks and holds that are now part of everyday life in the NHL and their undisciplined crosschecks and unsportsmanlike outbursts, the blame lies with them alone. Roberto Luongo has 2 straight shutouts as they prepare for the 1st visit this season from the Columbus Blue Jackets. We will have more post-game commentary as well as the pre-game show tomorrow morning on a new edition of We Are All Canuckleheads (too bad Phoenix isn't in town, it's show #55).

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Canucks 4 Wild 2 Boogaard 0

On paper it looked like doom for the Canucks, coming off a shootout loss in Edmonton the night before, having to take on one of the NHL's best home teams with little rest and a goalie whose last game was 1 month ago. Someone forgot to tell that to Markus Naslund. The Captain was stellar with a hat trick (not to mention a disallowed goal on a quick whistle and a slapper from the point that hit the post), playing as fine a game as I've seen him play post-Steve Moore incident. Curtis Sanford was solid despite giving up a couple to Marian Gaborik, and we also got an absolute beauty end to end rush from Ryan Kesler. Nazzy now has goals in 4 straight games and leads the team with 10. And as for the most anticipated aspect of the night, the "revenge" on Canucks players by Wild knuckledragger Derek Boogaard on Pinky & the Brain? Boogaard had 3:53 of ice time and was a -1, while the twins set up 2 of Naslunds 3 goals and were both +2.
Guess that showed us. Full credit to AV and the coaching staff who did a fine job of getting the guys ready and keeping them focused, pulling down what is no doubt the biggest win of the year. The Canucks now sit atop the Northwest Division, 1 point behind San Jose for 2nd place in the Conference with 24 points. Next up for the Canucks is a visit to Curtis Sanford's old stomping grounds in St. Louis to take on the much improved Blues team on Friday. Oh and hat tip to Squirrel E. Doom on CDC for the photo.

Monday, November 19, 2007

The road trip that wasn't, or how I learned to hate Parksville even more

It was going to be glorious. A prized ticked to see my beloved Canucks, against their hated rivals from Calgary. And the team has gotten hot, despite their losses of key defensemen. Leave it to a virus to dismantle the entire thing. I had to cancel my trip, and sell the ticket, thanks to some nagging bug that has left me completely drained for more than a week. And what a game to miss. The Sedins and Naslund in fine form. Willie Mitchell picking up the slack for the now suspended Mattias Ohlund , and Brad Isbister continuing his recent strong play with a laugher against Kiprusoff. The only things missing were round 3 of the Kesler/Iginla dance card and Luongo scoring a goal...

Gotta say the whole Ohlund incident is pretty disappointing. Although at first I was against the idea of a suspension, given the injury to Koivu (and whenever I hear the word cracked, and then see it referred to as a fracture I get a little bit miffed) I suppose it's going to have to be the way it is. The problem I have is, and I know this is a shock, that the NHL has once again proven to be inconsistent with it's punishments. Given that Randy Jones got 2 games for his hit from behind on Patrice Bergeron, and the head shots by Marion Gaborik and the Koivu shot that led to the retaliation went unpunished, the 4 games is hard to swallow from that viewpoint. Gaborik's was especially frustrating, so let's take a look at the 5 criteria used by the NHL to determine if the hit should warrant a suspension, shall we?

Did the hit deliberately target the head? Yes

Did he launch himself by leaving his feet to hit Kesler? Yes.

Is Gaborik a repeat offender? No.

Did he deliver the hit to the head of an unsuspecting opponent? Kesler saw the hit coming, but did he expect the head shot? Probably not, but for the sake of argument, we will say no.

Was it a late hit? You can argue this one, and we have to go on memory, but it seems to me the puck was far from Kesler at the time of the hit.

So there we go, 2 or 3 of the 5, depending how you look at it. Add in that Kesler was frustrating Gaborik all game by tight checking and delivering a few clean and legal hits, and you have the potential for premeditation. The game was out of reach in the first period. So if you have 3 of the 5, and the fact it came from a player who had tangled with the opposing player all game, why is it there wasn't even a fine? There's a lot of rhetoric coming out of Minnesota right now, fans blasting off on Ohlund, bringing up Bertuzzi and of course the thinly veiled threats from Wild neanderthal Derek Boogard. To the Wild fans I say, stop and think. Did Ohlund overreact? Yes. Is he a dirty player? No. Are you being a tad hypocritical? You know you are, and Gaborik's hit on Ohlund is the proof. Enjoy the game on Wednesday, and don't let the emotions of an incident that was handled by the league (rightly or wrongly) skew your perception of the incident.

Sunday, November 4, 2007

Canucks 4 Avalanche 3

Scott Oake and Kelly Hrudey said the Canucks are now in "season saving mode". I guess that isn't too far from the truth, as they will need to try and keep pace with the other teams in their division. An outstanding effort across the board last night from the Canucks, especially defensively. Mike Weaver and Alexander Edler played their best games as Canucks last night, Edler especially as he did yeoman work neutralizing the Joe Sakic line with partner Willie Mitchell all night. One of the main reasons we won? Our best players were our best players. Markus Naslund with 2 assists. Brendan Morrison with a goal. Kesler with a goal, and the Sedins combining for 6 points. And when we needed the big saves, Roberto Luongo was there, challenging the shooters and looking confident. And how about the glove save by Mike Weaver lol. The score was close, but this game was decided by all the little things, battles for the puck, pursuits and turnovers. The Canucks consistently won these battles against an Avs team that hadn't lost at home this season. We are now 4-0 against division opponents, and when they get back on track, this good start divisionally will pay huge dividends come the end of the year.

Saturday, November 3, 2007

Apparantly we're done or something?

Anti-Canuck forces are dancing in the streets as injuries to our defense mount and our goaltender is now being set upon by the fans. Guess this means the season is over. A new podcast will be posted today, and we will concede exactly that. Or maybe not.

I don't want to tip my hat too much, but to those of you who booed Roberto Luongo, I say this: How does one go from being the Savior to the Goat with around 70 games left to play in the season? Thanks to the Idiot Box, we have a short term memory of what hard times with this club actually feel like. This is not the worse it's ever been. Not even close.

Friday, October 26, 2007

Canucks vs. Washington- Second Period

A decent period, though I think the Canucks were allowing Washington to take some liberties (Mr. Ovechkin may want to keep his head up in the 3rd). Nice to see they are still getting shots to the net, and the hard work is still prevalent. The 4th line of Isbister, Ritchie and Burrows has been good, but all 4 lines have had chances tonight. This game is probably the most reminiscent of last year's team of any game I've seen them play this year. Olie Kolzig is really holding his team in the game so far, and is going to need to keep it up if they want any chance of pulling even. And I have to say that maybe getting cross-checked in the head was the best thing that ever happened to Ryan Kesler, as he has continued to be one of the hardest working and most dangerous Canucks tonight.

Canucks vs. Washington- First Period

Finally we see a full period's worth of work and the Canucks truly deserve the 2-1 lead after 20 minutes. Pyatt's goal especially was all about hustle and hard work, and holy crap is Willie Mitchell playing mean tonight. You know guys are going to be weary of going into the corners with Big Willie when he has his game face on. Bobby Lou looks good, and apart from the Naslund penalty, a 100% improvement from the last game so far. More after the second period.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Mind your's bandwagon time!

Ah yes, nothing like a loss to bring out the best on the CDC board. Despite playing well in the last half of the game (to be fair that's all I watched), the Canucks lost 3-1 to a much improved Carolina Hurricanes team. The reactions on the board?
- Is AV's job in jeopardy?
- do we need to be worried yet.?
- I want your opinion * 12
Would you do it? Luongo for Kopitar?
(Perhaps I should explain this one... there is a school of "thought" amongst some CDC'ers that one of the reasons we are going to fail is that in the 2005 draft we chose Luc Bourdon, a Dman ranked 6th in North America by Central Scouting. Forget that there were 9 teams before us, and we were looking for a defenseman first. It all boils down to Kopitar's 12 points are needed NOW, damn a defenseman who may someday replace Mattias Ohlund!!! So let's get rid of the best goalie we have ever had, despite the fact he starts EVERY season like this, for a Slovenian, because that is truly the answer to the problem.)

- Fire Dave Nonis

- Anyone else think the Sedin Twins are overrated?

there are more, but why bother as a number of them simply rehash things already covered in these threads...
It's just amazing to me sometimes the number of so-called fans who are so willing to decalre the season over after a loss... I can't even justify such a thought if the team was 0-9 simply because there is so much hockey to play. Yes their games have been frustrating to watch so far, as there hasn't been a game where you can say they played a solid 60 minutes. But for crying out loud people... The GM is not going anywhere, you don't fire the coach for being 1 game under .500 at the start of the season, and you don't trade the best damn goalie in the league for a guy in his second season.

For those who care to look, there were some positives there, the Canucks answered the bell quite well in the toughness department, Ryan Kesler continued his strong play and Morrison got another goal. The Sedins have been quiet for a couple games now, but compared to some players around the league and the slumps they're in, it's hardly a reason to panic. We have Detroit tomorrow night. They're off to another fine start, and no doubt it probably has something to do with a bizarre combination of stem cell research, black magic and Viagra. But there is something about the Wings that brings out the best in this team, and maybe this is just what we need. But what do I know... after all there must be something wrong with me, because I haven't even looked at the panic button yet.

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Sunday Blog Roundup

It's Sunday, and that means it's time for a look at some of the best posts from the ol' blogosphere...

- Rinslet waxes about her on again off again affection for Taylor Pyatt, and her dark, dirty secret

- Alanah at Kukla's Corner shows that even when the Canucks do something that looks a little embarrassing, if you wait long enough, someone will trump it

- At the CDC, Flinch gives us a great breakdown of the real problem with the Canucks

- the Kurtenblog gives us some deep thoughts on the loss to the Kings

- The Professor has an interesting read on the season-to-date with our beloved 'Nucks

- Yankee Canuck points out that maybe a road trip is exactly what the Canucks need right now

- Zanstorm at Waiting For Stanley has a shocking revelation about the Leafs

- Theory Of Ice on Les Canadiens and Chicken Wings...

- Red & Black Hockey shines the spotlight on the Hurricanes' recent injury woes (good to know as we prepare to play them for the 1st time since 1957...)

- Pens Blog breaks down the win over the Caps (and throws in some Recchi-hate for good measure... right now on Mark Recchi Way, a small child is crying

- Do The Thrashers Have Large Talons tries to understand the mess that is going on in Atlanta

- Blueshirt Bulletin on whether it's time to hit the panic button in NYC

-Abel To Yzerman's got a great post about something we can all relate to: a distaste for the Sharks

- Since we gave you the Pittsburgh side of the story, we may as well let you know what On Frozen Blog thought of the game from the Caps perspective

- Hockey Blog In Canada looks back at the first to 500, the legendary Rocket Richard

- Hockey Nation wonders if the next expansion wave will cross the pond (so that's why Balsilie is back in the game...)

- Mike Chen with another one we can all relate to: the asshole that sits behind us

Nucks Talk Radio is on the air at 1pm for pregame, and @ 5 for the post game wrap up, with yours truly, and a co-host to be named later...

Friday, October 19, 2007

Back from up island

Had to work in Parksville the last few days, thus the lack of updates. May not have a pre-game show ready for today (If it's a short work day then yes...), but there will be post game tomorrow as well as myself and Flinch hosting the weekend edition of Nucks Talk Radio. Maybe I will talk about falling down a hole in Parksville...

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Sunday Blog Roundup

Travelling across the internets (which as we all know, is a series of tubes) to bring you some blogilicious goodness from the past week:
-Tom Benjamin has a couple interesting articles: one on the once again getting ugly Ted Saskin saga and the other a look at a previous article by James Mirtle on the number of teams that can make the playoffs from one division...

-Alanah at Canucks and Beyond insists she was sober when she made this post. Right.

- Over At The Canucks Genome Project, The Professor explains why the cry for an enforcer may be just a bunch of fooferah (don't ask...)

- Yankee Canuck liveblogged the Friday night Canucks and Oilers game

- Finny over at Girl With a Puck has detailed coverage of the Ducks home opener and banner raising ceremony...

- Caps Nut has a wrap up of last night's game with with Buffalo, included just for the sheer number of times they were referred to as the Buffaslugs

- Eyes On The Prize reminds Habs fans that while they're off to a good start, they shouldn't get ahead of themselves

- A Theory On Ice has an awesome post on watching hockey as it relates to the violent aspect of the game, it's long but a really fascinating read

-The Pensblog game coverage of the 6-4 win over the Leafs has made me a big fan of this blog

- Covered In Oil wants to know What Happened Friday night, apparently it had something to do with some "assclowns" (Great blog, but it's kinda weak to call someone an assclown when they own you like Gretz and the boys once owned us...)

- Jes Golbez is fairly subdued in his view that Nike getting out of the hockey business is a good thing

Canucks 4 Oilers 1

Wow... you know it's a special day when we get the prediction right. And if you don't believe me, here's the link to yesterday's pregame show . Oh yeah and our apologies for not posting it, I forgot to get it on here in the excitement of making my debut on Nucks Talk Radio yesterday. Myself, and co-host Flinch will be handling the Saturday show every week, and I gotta tell ya, it feels pretty good to be back on live. Anyways, enough about me. Another fine team effort last night, this time it was all about the leaders on this team sending a message. This team can play defense, but we can also put the puck in the net (outscoring the Oilers 9-3 this weekend). Top to bottom it was a great game, shame to see Cowan go down with an injury like that, but it does insure Rypien stays up longer. The line of Markus Naslund, Brendan Morrison and Ryan Kesler were the real catalyst in this game. They got things rolling, and put pressure on the Oilers from the start, and really looked dangerous the entire game. As far as the Sedins, I am so glad this game was on HNIC, because the entire country got to see what was probably one of the greatest single shifts I have ever witnessed. And thanks to youtube, so can you (hat tip to gt261)

Roberto Luongo was solid, and although it sucked he didn't get the shutout, I don't think anyone can truly be unhappy with the win. Postgame show and Canucks and Sharks pregame show later today, as well as the Sunday Blog Roundup.

Saturday, October 13, 2007

Canucks 5 Oilers 2

A much better effort last night as the addition of Rick Rypien to the lineup from the Manitoba Moose spurred the Canucks to a 5-2 victory over the Oilers in Edmonton. Rypien had a goal and assisted on Alex Burrows' game winner, a beautiful shorthanded breakaway goal. They also got goals from Henrik Sedin, Brendan Morrison and Markus Naslund. Roberto Luongo was strong, making 28 saves, allowing goals by Sheldon Souray and Raffi Torres. Complete post game wrap up and pregame show will be posted soon, and I make my official debut on Nucks Talk Radio this afternoon with co-host Flinch. More details on that asap.

Friday, October 12, 2007

Boulerice gets 25 games


National Hockey League disciplinarian Colin Campbell has handed Flyers forward Jesse Boulerice a 25-game suspension for cross-checking Vancouver Canucks centre Ryan Kesler in the head Wednesday night.

It's the longest suspension handed out in NHL history for an on-ice incident. New York Islanders forward Chris Simon also got 25 games for his two-handed slash to the face of Ryan Hollweg of the New York Rangers last season.

''This was more than a careless and reckless play - it was senseless,'' Campbell said in a release. ''This was a deliberate cross-check to the face where Jesse Boulerice broke the shaft of his stick on Ryan Kesler's jaw. Boulerice went out of his way to deliver the cross-check and we will not tolerate this kind of conduct.''

The punishment comes exactly two weeks after the league handed Flyers forward Steve Downie a 20-game suspension for his hit on Ottawa Senators forward Dean McAmmond in the pre-season.

The incident happened in the third period of Philadelphia's 8-2 win at GM Place.

With the Flyers up 7-2 at the time, Boulerice cross-checked Kesler in the face after the Canuck tried to hit Flyers defenceman Randy Jones behind the net.

Kesler lay on the ice for a few minutes before being helped to the Vancouver bench. He didn't return to the game. Boulerice received a match penalty and game misconduct.

"I reacted in a bad way - the wrong way," Boulerice said following the game. "I wanted to give him a hit back."

Kesler practised Thursday and expects to play tonight when the Canucks face the Oilers.

"We're by no means condoning what happened," Flyers coach John Stevens said after the team announced the suspension. "He's going to have to stand up and pay the price."

Flyers general manager Paul Holmgren echoed the same sentiment.

''I think we're in agreement that there's no place in the game for this anymore. I do think it was an isolated incident. Jesse lost his composure, lost his cool. It's something that's not the right thing to do, at any time,'' Holmgren said.

''I expected the worst,'' said Holmgren. ''Is 25 the worst? It's pretty close to what I expected.''

Boulerice, 29, signed with the Flyers after completing a tryout in the exhibition season.

Under the terms of the Collective Bargaining Agreement, and based on his average annual salary, Boulerice will forfeit $63,502.75. He will be eligible to return on December 13 at Montreal.

This is not the first time Boulerice has been suspended for a stick foul. When he played junior hockey, he was suspended for one year by the Ontario Hockey League for hitting Andrew Long in the face with a baseball-style swing of his stick. Boulerice also faced assault charges in that case.


25 games - Jesse Boulerice, Philadelphia, Oct. 12, 2007, for cross-checking Vancouver centre Ryan Kesler across the face in a game on Oct. 10.

25 games - Chris Simon, New York Islanders, March 11, 2007, for the rest of the regular season (15 games) and playoffs for his two-handed stick attack to the face of New York Rangers forward Ryan Hollweg. Since Islanders played only five playoff games, suspension extended to first five games of 2007-08.

23 games - Marty McSorley, Boston, Feb. 2000, for knocking out Vancouver's Donald Brashear with a stick-swinging hit. On Nov. 7, 2000, the suspension was extended by NHL commissioner Gary Bettman to Feb. 20, 2001.

23 games - Gordie Dwyer, Tampa Bay, Sept. 19, 2000, for abusing officials and coming out of the penalty box to fight in an exhibition game against Washington.

21 games - Dale Hunter, Washington, May 1993, for a blindside check of Pierre Turgeon of the N.Y. Islanders after a goal in a playoff game.

20 games - Steve Downie, Philadelphia, Sept. 28, 2007, for leaving his feet to deliver a deliberate hit to the head Ottawa forward Dean McAmmond in a pre-season game Sept. 25.

20 games - Todd Bertuzzi, Vancouver, March 11, 2004, for his sucker-punch of Colorado forward Steve Moore on March 8. Bertuzzi's suspension was for 13 regular season games, plus playoffs. Bertuzzi was reinstated 17 months later, after the year-long lockout.

20 games - Tom Lysiak, Chicago, Oct. 1983, for intentionally tripping a linesman.

20 games - Brad May, Phoenix, Nov. 15, 2000, for hitting Columbus' Steve Heinze on the nose with his stick in a game on Nov. 11.

Files from THE CANADIAN PRESS were used in this report.

Episode 49

Listen to Episode 49 here.

Shannon down, Rypien up

The Canucks sent Ryan Shannon down to the Manitoba Moose yesterday. Shannon had 2 goals in 3 games, but was a team worst -7. Rypien had played well during the pre-season before suffering another injury. It's hoped Rypien's speed and aggressive style will spark the Canucks back to life. Rypien will probably not get a warm reception in Edmonton after the huge hit he laid on Oilers D Matthew Roy. Pregame show will be posted later.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Flyers 8 Canucks 2

I had already been going through what I was going to write about/say in the podcast concerning last night's game when Jesse Boulerice did one of the most rediculous things I've ever seen in a hockey game. WHO THE HELL DOES SOMETHING LIKE THIS WITH A 7-2 LEAD????
Not that I would condone it in anyway, but you could sort of understand if a Canucks player had lost their cool, and been the one who did this. But it was vicious, with serious intent to injure and he hunted him down to do it. And I don't want to hear ANYTHING about what a class act Paul Holmgren was for going to the Canucks dressing room afterwards. His team had Ben Eager on the ice in the last minute of the game, and he made no attempt to avoid contact with Curtis Sanford.
The Flyers have always been, and will always be a classless organization. I expect a suspension on par with the one handed down to Chris Simon after his attack on Ryan Hollweg. It was gutless, and guys like this don't belong in the NHL.

I will have more on this later, and Episode 49 will be up either tonight or tomorrow. I made my first appearance on Canucks Talk Radio yesterday and it went pretty good. It's a really cool concept, kind of an expansion on the whole team blogging phenomenon. Will talk a little bit more about that soon.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Episode 48

An OT thriller, concerns about a potential injury to Roberto Luongo and Markus Naslund sending a message... don't you just love it when we play the Flames. Post game wrap up, the pregame show for the Canucks and Flyers , the latest news on Roberto Luongo and other news from around the league on this edition of WAACH

Canucks vs Flyers tonight, New Episode otw

We will be posting Episode 48 of WAACH shortly, gonna be a great game. You'll have to pardon my voice in this one, woke up sick as a dog again, and just got back from the Doc (xrays and such) ... Leafs lost a close one last night, Carolina taking that game 7-1. Are you freaking kidding me? And people have the audacity to call Toskala the next Luongo? He isn't fit to cover Roberto on a bathroom break...

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Random stuff

The Oilers appear to have come back down to earth after a loss to the Red Wings last night. Let's face it, if Chris Chelios scores, you really don't deserve 2 points. Ottawa kept rolling meanwhile with a 4-2 win over New Jersey. Alfredsson, Heatley and Spezza are just amazing right now. And how about Martin Gerber? It's early, but this could be one of the best turnarounds of the season. Washington gets outshot 31-12 and still comes out of a sold out Nassau Coliseum with a 2-1 win. 3-0, are they for real? Time will tell, but Kolzig looks good so far, and they are getting balanced scoring.

Monday, October 8, 2007

Jason Blake battling Leukemia

From TSN this morning, some terrible news about newly signed Jason Blake:

10/8/2007 12:19:39 PM

The Toronto Maple Leafs announced on Monday that forward Jason Blake is battling a rare form of leukemia.

"This morning I shared with my teammates news that I was diagnosed with Chronic Myelogenous Leukemia," Blake said on the team's website.

"It is highly-treatable, and I have begun taking a pill on a daily basis that has proven to be very effective in controlling this cancer. The prognosis, and certainly the expectations of my physician, myself and my family, is that I will live a long, full and normal life. This situation will not impact my ability to live my life as I otherwise would, and will not affect my ability to perform at my highest level for the Toronto Maple Leafs. I'm looking forward to my first season with the Leafs and helping our club compete for the Stanley Cup."

Chronic myelogenous leukemia (CML) is an uncommon type of cancer of the blood cells.

It's considered chronic leukemia because it usually progresses more slowly than acute leukemia, sometimes over the course of years.

CML is not a solid tumor that can be surgically removed, but the prognosis for people with chronic myelogenous leukemia may be improving because of new medications to treat the condition.

Although a bone marrow transplant may still be an option, many people with chronic myelogenous leukemia are able to manage their condition long term with the use of chemotherapy-like pills.

The team added after Monday's practice that they will be mindful of his condition.

"Jason will be able to continue to play fully with the team and will be monitored closely by both the team's physician and his CML specialist," team doctor Noah Forman said.

It's the second time that Blake's family has been affected by cancer.

In March of 2001, Blake's wife, Sara - eight months pregnant with their first child - was told by doctors that she had thyroid cancer. Blake left the team to be with her, and Lauren Blake was born March 20 after Sara underwent an emergency Caesarean section.

Sara had a portion of her thyroid removed without complications shortly afterwards, and the lump that was removed was determined not to be cancerous.

Toronto signed Jason Blake to a $20 million, five-year contract on July 1.

The four-time 20-goal scorer finished with career highs in goals and points (69) while playing all 82 games with the New York Islanders last season."

Terrible news, but hopefully they are correct in the diagnosis that it is treatable and he makes a full recovery. We wish him all the best for a speedy and full recovery. Sure we kid Leafs fans, but at times like this we are hockey fans. Hang in there, guys.

Sunday, October 7, 2007

Sunday Worship

hat tip to sspyndel on CDC

Sunday Blog Roundup

A little delay in posting the post-game show, as I deal with this damn cold coming back again... so a new feature here on WAACH, the Sunday Blog Roundup will highlight some great articles that you may have missed during the week...
* Alanah at Kukla's Corner has some Jeremy Roenick love, plus a look at last night's game
* The boys at Orland Kurtenblog have provided a handy Do's and Dont's list for watching Canucks games this season...
* Over at Stick In Rink, Isabella introduces the Canucks Regular Season Fan Care Package
* The Chief Canuck has a breakdown of last night's game
* The Yankee Canuck gets us through the Sharks game, um...well lubricated
* Waiting For Stanley weighs in on the Burke vs. Lowe saga
* James Mirtle highlights some of the rookies to keep an eye on
* In honor of Thanksgiving up here in Canada, we bring you the Battle Of Alberta's Thanksgiving Ditty
* Covered In Oil has some issues with Kevin Lowe's new 4 year contract...

Saturday, October 6, 2007

Canucks 4 Flames 3 OT

Couldn't have picked a better time to come in late to a game than this one. We got back from Nanaimo with about 10 minutes remaining, and while I still think it was a pick play on the 3rd Calgary goal, nice to see the boys bounce back and get the winner just before the shootout. Phaneuf looks good in the box for the winner, too. I guess if there's one thing that's disappointing as a Canucks fan, it's that Iron Mike is the guest on After Hours. So that means they will have to put off the profanity-laced tirade until tomorrow morning.

And for those of you interested, since in our rush to head out on the highway this afternoon we forgot to post it here, it's episode 47.

Will have a post-game show tomorrow, but I will need to watch the replay tonight so I can see the first 3/4 of the game...

And oh yeah, it is sooooooooooo not surprising I find I am unable to sign in on CDC right now lol.
Let's hope this doesn't happen every time we beat the Flames, eh?

Friday, October 5, 2007

Second Intermission

A much better effort, with a lot of chances, but it looks like Nabokov is on top of his game tonight. That powerplay looked really good, but it really emphasized how much we need to stay out of the penalty box, as we really haven't had much of a look at the Sedins, Nazzy and co. Ryan Shannon had a great period, and Mitchell made amends for his gaffe in the first with some strong play, especially on the 5 on 3. It's gonna be hard, but they can still do it. An early goal to change the momentum is crucial.

First Intermission

Well gee whiz, what the h-e double hockey sticks was that? Not the start they wanted at all. I want to not blame Luongo, as two of those weren't really his fault, but the Thornton goal... meh. Either way, not the game anyone was expecting from him. As far as positives go, Ryan Kesler looked really good, as did the Sedins, Naslund and Ryan Shannon (though he will probably having nightmares about that open net tonight). As far as defense, Aaron Miller has looked good, as has Bieksa and Krajicek. Lots of hockey to play still, and Roenick isn't going to get any more bounces like those tonight. Watch for a strong comeback in the 2nd.

Episode 46

Pregame for the Canucks and Sharks and our Eastern Conference preview right here .

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

Why you should never run around high fiving...

until you know for sure... just ask Nathan McIver.
The Canucks have made their cuts... and then a move with another cut. On Monday the Canucks announced their final cuts to get the roster to 24. They released Dan McGillis, and sent the following 7 players to Manitoba:
Luc Bourdon, Mike Brown, Patrick Coulombe, Jannik Hnasen, Micheal Grabner, Jason Jaffray and Rick Rypien. That means that Ryan Shannon, Mason Raymond and Nathan McIver can step forward to the Opening Night lineup. Not so fast Nathan. He was sent to the Moose today as the Canucks claimed D Mike Weaver off waivers from the LA Kings.

Brendan Morrison expects to play Friday night, as does Alexander Edler. Roberto Luongo revealed his new mask today, but when you click the link at to see pictures of the new design, you get a message saying "Oops! A system error has occurred.

Sorry for the inconvenience. Please click here to continue.

If problem persists, please try again later." along with the NHL logo. Maybe the Rangers are on to something...

And finally... from TSN's NHL Season Preview, James Duthie interviewing Roberto Luongo (thanks to Dr. Death of CDC for posting it on youtube), and congratulations to Roberto and his wife Gina who are expecting their first child... no word on the rumor the baby will be named Jesus.

Sunday, September 30, 2007

New links

Posted a number of new links, including some blogs and podcasts worth checking out...

The Rypien hit...

I am sure you've all seen it by now. The reactions have gone from the Oilers radio announcer Rod Phillips calling for Rypien to get 40 games (!) to the more common one, people shaking their head about what Roy was thinking turning before the hit. There are Oiler fans who still insist that Rypien left his feet, I don't buy that, and even if you want to make that claim, it looks like if he did (and I am not saying he did) that it may be from him letting up just a bit. I understand that hockey is a physical game, and like any of that nature, emotions run high, especially amongst fans. Rod Phillips is a respected broadcaster, among one of the better ones in the league. I was really surprised to hear him say something like that. I think overall I have no problem with the penalty assessed (though I believe that had the Downie hit not taken place earlier in the week, he would have gotten just 2 minutes). But if the NHL suspends him for a hit that is fairly common, just a little overenthusiastic, would be a sign that Bettman has truly lost his mind.

Saturday, September 29, 2007

Episode 45

Just in time for the game... literally
Episode 45

Random Thoughts...

They have 2 periods in the books in London, and it's pretty obvious which team did a better job of preparing for this 2 game set. The Kings look focused and fresh, and the Ducks look like they are still in pre-season mode. While the Ducks were taking publicity photos around town for their website and the league, the Kings were in a tournament in Austria (which they won). Goaltender Jonathan Bernier has looked very sharp, picking up where he left off in the Canada/Russia Super Series. Could he be the answer to LA's goaltending woes? Overall the Kings are starting to put the pieces together. They have a nice blend of youth and experience, and with superstars in waiting Kopitar and Johnson, they could be a sleeper pick this year. Anaheim looks lost at times. Passing is off, they don't seem to have any real chemistry with each other. It's probably too early to tell, but it looks like they are already missing Selanne and Niedermeyer.

I thought the opening of the game was rather ironic... could you have a greater analogy for the career of Gary Bettman than that half hour delay, which I am sure they knew was going to happen, but they did it anyways. Amazing there hasn't been a groin pull yet (that I know of... I missed part of the 2nd)... Nice to hear Jim Hughson again, but lo and behold there's Greg Millen, and right out of the gate he "educates" us by telling us there are a lot of people in the surrounding area of the O2 arena. Get out!?! So London's big, eh? Who knew?

A few years back, I took my son to see WCW wrestling in Kamloops. I remember the only disappointment I felt was at the end of the night, there had not been a single chair shot. You know these fans will be feeling the same if there isn't a fight in this game...

Bertuzzi seems to be fairly static, cruising around the net, sometimes getting involved, but more often than not being part of an 'almost' play, as has been his M.O. lately...

And what the hell was the NHL thinking sending Mick McGeough to officiate this game. In an international showcase for the game, they send the Bird of Paradise. Sheesh.

Headlines I'd like to see...

With the Ducks and Kings over in England to open the NHL season with a pair of games, it got me thinking about the British tabloids and their lust for a sensational story. I can just see it now:

- Supermodel Kate Moss gets stuck in the gap in Chris Pronger's teeth!
- Bad Boy Bertuzzi punches Sir Elton John!!!
- Suspected Terror Plot foiled by George Parros' Mustache!!!

yeah, well I never said I was a comedian...

Episode 44

Episode 44
Apologies for not getting it up last night, but after posting the show I had to drive to Nanaimo, and because some nice person broke the antenna off my car, I can't get radio, so I missed the game. I have to say considering the number of top players that were out of our lineup, and were in Calgary's lineup, this game should not have gone the way it did. Funny how people were calling for Curtis Sanford's head a few days ago. 40 saves last night, and the way he responded after giving a soft goal was really encouraging. Mason Raymond and Luc Bourdon had strong games, and Coach Alain Vigneault has a tough decision on his hands when it comes to the final cuts before next week's season opener. Aaron Miller will make his debut in a Canucks uniform tonight in Edmonton. The game goes at 5pm PDT on Sportsnet Pacific. Roberto Luongo will be getting the start tonight. The NHL season actually starts today with the Kings and Ducks squaring off in the new O2 arena in London, England.

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Episode 43

Monday was the annual Milford Golf Classic, a tradition with the Vancouver Canucks, and Coach Alain Vigneault didn't waste any time teeing off on his veterans after the dismal weekend results... but the Cavalry is coming as the Sharks are spotted outside GM Place... it's gamenight, this is We Are All Canuckleheads

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

To the Moose with you lot!

The Vancouver Canucks announced that they re-assigned the following players to the AHL's Manitoba Moose:
Balej, Jozef Right Wing
Classen, Greg Centre
Fitzgerald, Zack Defence
Fortunus, Maxime Defence
Heshka, Shaun Defence
Labrie, Pierre-Cedric Left Wing
MacIntyre, Drew Goaltender
Moran, Brad Centre
Schneider, Cory Goaltender
Sharrow, Jim Defence
Simek, Juraj Forward

They will attend the camp for the Moose in Winnipeg. And hey, just when you thought all was lost, Willie Mitchell, Trevor Linden, Kevin Bieksa and Ryan Kesler all expect to play tomorrow night against San Jose at GM Place. Mitchell and Linden attributed their groin injuries to poor ice at Bear Mountain Arena during training camp. Why do so many Canucks have groin problems to start the season?

Because they had training camp at Bear Mountain Arena in Victoria.

Apparently the ice is so crummy that it caused a plague of groin injuries throughout the team.
"Both Linden and Mitchell said bad ice at the team's Victoria training camp at Bear Mountain Arena, combined with some lengthy conditioning skates, contributed to the long list of players nursing sore groins," says today's Times Colonist. Guess we will have to make it a road trip for training camp next year...
Make sure to check out the next episode of WAACH, with complete pre-game coverage of the rematch against the Sharks, it will be posted tomorrow!

Monday, September 24, 2007

Post-game report with Chicken Little

Yeah, it was horrible and I didn't even watch the game. But the panic is setting in as Canucks fans who can't comprehend that the team we had on the ice last night is nowhere near our Opening night lineup was spanked by the Ducks last night. Maybe it was Todd Bertuzzi's 3 point performance, but when you have the defending Cup champs (missing a couple key players but essentially the same lineup they knocked us out of the playoffs with) playing against the Manitoba Moose, chances are the game will be a bit one-sided. There's lots of hockey to come. The injuries will heal. We haven't even seen this team as a whole entity yet. Relax.

We did a pre-game show yesterday, but uh... given the score and how wrong we were on the prediction, I think we will just let that one go lol.

There is a ton of games left, including 3 more pre-season ones. Next up is San Jose at home on Wednesday. Pre-game show will be up Tuesday, and then the boys will be in Calgary Friday and Edmonton the following night to close out the pre-season.

We will update the injury status asap, and let you know if any of the regulars are ready for Wednesday.

Sunday, September 23, 2007

San Jose 3 Vancouver 1

Boy did we call that one, eh? A Canucks squad featuring just 7 NHL vets took on a Sharks team that barring a couple changes will be what you see from them on opening night. Still the boys did well in a 3-1 loss, and we will cover it all on the next episode later today, as well as preview tonights clash with the Ducks

Saturday, September 22, 2007

Episode 41

Fresh out of the internets, the pre-game show of tonight's game between the 'Nucks and Sharks is online now

Canucks vs. San Jose tonight!

Vancouver has started the pre-season strongly despite a rash of injuries to core players, and they will face another test tonight in San Jose against the Sharks. The game goes tonight at 7:30 and will be shown on Rogers Sportsnet Pacific. Our pre-game show will be posted soon, keep checking back as we will be adding content often.