The Vancouver Canucks won’t want to remember this contest.
The team played their Pacific Northwest rivalry for the second time during the preseason, and once again found themselves in the losing column. The Kraken also beat the Canucks by a score of 5-3 last Sunday during Seattle’s first-ever NHL game.
Tuesday’s contest was deadlocked at 0-0 going into the second period, with the Canucks actually outshooting the Kraken by a margin of 15-8. However, the Canucks fell behind quickly during the middle frame, thanks to two quick goals from defenceman Vince Dunn, as well as a nifty tally from Ryan Donato near the end of the period.
The Kraken sealed the deal during the third period with an empty net goal from Nathan Bastien.
It wasn’t the ideal outcome for the Canucks, who now hold a preseason record of 3-3, but there were still a few bright spots that both fans and management can be excited about.
Without further adieu, here are three takeaways from Tuesday night’s contest:
Vasily Podkolzin impresses
It’s safe to say that Vasily Podkolzin played the best game of his young NHL career on Tuesday night.
The 20-year-old rookie started the night on the second line, and definitely took advantage of his top-six minutes.
Despite the tilted scoreline, Podkolzin was buzzing every time he hit the ice, injecting excitement into the fans in attendance. Podkolzin, who was suiting up in his third preseason contest of the year, showcased his speed, physicality and quick hands, and even almost tallied his first goal as a Canuck in what would’ve been a highlight-reel finish.
The former tenth overall pick has had a very steady training camp so far, with most fans already pencilling him in for a top-nine position come opening night as a result. Unfortunately, the same couldn’t be said for head coach Travis Green who, prior to Tuesday night’s contest, still wanted to see more from Podkolzin in order for him to secure his position on the team.
The good news for the Canucks? It looks like Podkolzin heard that message loud and clear heading into Tuesday night, and could be a welcomed addition to the second or third line if he continues to perform at this level.