The Vancouver Canucks gave a poor effort in their first game in front of fans at Rogers Arena for the first time since March of 2020.
As you all know, they ended up losing 3-2 to the Minnesota Wild.
One of the storylines of the season so far for the Canucks is their power play.
At the time of this writing, Vancouver’s power play ranks 15th in the NHL. It has converted on six out of its 26 attempts so far this season per NHL.Com. (That’s 23%.)
The power play isn’t bad but it could be better.
Last season, the power play ranked 25th in the league. It was quite the fall from fourth in the 2019-20 season.
Chiasson in particular is a power play specialist.
The Montreal native was signed to a PTO in September and was officially signed to a one-year contract shortly before the season began.
He spent the last three seasons with the Edmonton Oilers and during his time there, the Oilers were the top-ranked power play in the NHL. (25.8% from 2018-19 to the 2021 season and the time of this writing are the number one ranked power play unit in the NHL.) I guess having Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl had something to do with it.
In Edmonton, Chiasson has 19 goals and 35 points on the man advantage.
The Canucks signed him because he can produce on the power play and can be a good net-front presence.
Chiasson has two goals and an assist so far this season and they have come all on the power play. No surprise there.
He got the first Canucks goal against the Wild.
Despite him scoring on the power play, Canucks fans demanded that Brock Boeser should be on the first unit instead of Chiasson.
Ideally, that is what you would like to have. Boeser has a great shot and one that could be utilized on the power play. Bo Horvat has been known to score power play goals in front of the net, (From the bumper spot to be exact.) while J.T. Miller continues his spot on the half wall.
Boeser isn’t too upset about being on the second power play unit.
“I’m really comfortable playing that spot, that shooting spot,” said Boeser at Tuesday’s practice per Daniel Wagner of Vancouver is Awesome. “We have good enough players to have two good units because obviously, that’s important. If one unit doesn’t score, the second unit gets out there, we need to score. Chiasson is really good at net-front, he’s been with Edmonton’s top power play the last couple of years, so I’m totally okay with it.”
The Canucks power play has the personnel to be a very good one and it makes sense to spread out them out on the two units especially since the second unit struggled last season.
In my opinion, it would be better to load up the first unit with Boeser on it.
The 24-year-old has 32 goals and 69 points on the power play in his career.
Per MoneyPuck.Com, Boeser has a 9.9 shooting percentage on the man advantage and has 1.70 expected goals per 60 minutes at five on four in his career.
Boeser should also be allowed to take one-timers on the first unit again.
Boeser specialty is scoring goals and that can be put on display on the power play. He should play with Quinn Hughes, Miller, Horvat, and Elias Pettersson. He’ll see more power play time and he has proven he can finish on the man advantage whether that’s with a one-timer or a quick wrist shot.
If the power play starts to struggle, you would think Travis Green would put Boeser back on the first unit.
No disrespect to Chiasson, who can finish at five-on-four himself, but it would be better for a bonafide goalscorer like Boeser to be on the top unit.