5. Vrbata still going strong
The Radim Vrbata train is still going. Say what you want about wanting to ship him out, but he is such a valuable player even at his age.
The box score for Vrbata tells me that he had three takeaways, the most on the team. I thought he had a great possession game. After all, every time I dig up the advanced stats, Vrbata is at the top with the Sedins. Of course, don’t forget his 21 points in 43 games.
Related: Top Five Suitors for Radim Vrbata
He was out there to start the OT period with Horvat and, more importantly, he netted the game winner in the shootout. When’s the last time you saw a move that slick from a Canuck not named Vrbata?
- Sbisa returned to action and had a team-leading five hits on the game. Sbisa might hurt your possession at times, but he sure is a lot more durable than Yannick Weber is. Sbisa also has more goals than Weber and is two years younger. Long story short, who wants to trade for Weber?
- What is the verdict on Vey? I thought that Henrik’s injury was going to be Vey’s NHL lifeline but also realized that he just bumped Cracknell down on the depth chart? Woah. I think I should stop judging Vey from his play last year.
- As noted, Dorsett and Prust were limited to less than 10 minutes. But looking at the defensive minutes, you realize how the Canucks are starting to look better with Sbisa back. Alex Edler played 25:32 and Chris Tanev played 22:52. Then you see Hutton playing No. 3 with 21:37. Sbisa followed with 19:33, and Matt Bartkowski had 17:45. Alex Biega had the lowest ice time with just 16:04. Note that the last two took a penalty each.
Next up? AV and the New York Rangers. Hopefully Henrik is back quick, because I think I like my prediction for a Canucks’ loss in Madison Square Garden. That was my five thoughts and a bit following the win over the NY Islanders.
Feel free to tweet us your thoughts @FSTheCanuckWay or to me @dave_nuckyj. Comment your takeaways below, too!
*Statistics courtesy of NHL.com and ESPN.com