The Vancouver Canucks are undefeated in 2022.
The team wrapped up their three-game road trip with a New Year’s Day contest at Climate Pledge Arena, taking on their geographic rival in the Seattle Kraken. It had been a December to remember for Vancouver, who went 7-1-1 under new head coach Bruce Boudreau, highlighted by five straight home victories and seven out of eight points collected against divisional opponents during that span, and it appears that they were able to carry that same winning mentality to start the new year.
Despite only being able to dress 11 forwards, the Canucks were still able to turn up the offence, scoring five goals against Seattle en route to yet another dominant win in the Boudreau era.
With the victory in Seattle, the Canucks now sit just three points back of the Edmonton Oilers, who currently hold fourth place in the Pacific Division and, more importantly, the second wild card spot in the Western Conference, with just only two games in hand over Vancouver.
Without further ado, here are three takeaways from Vancouver’s 5-2 win over Seattle:
Pearson notches the Gordie Howe hattrick
Tanner Pearson had himself quite the Saturday night.
With Jason Dickinson out of the line-up and onto the league’s COVID-19 protocol list, Boudreau had to make some last-minute adjustments to his forward combinations, and that included Pearson, who found himself on a line with Elias Pettersson and Conor Garland.
The 29-year-old winger made his presence known almost right away, dropping the gloves with Conor Soucy after he delivered a questionable high hit to Garland. This was only Pearson’s second career scrap, but he held his own and, more importantly, provided a much-needed spark to his team.
Pearson was quieter in the middle frame, but made his way onto the scoresheet in the third period, registering the secondary assist on Garland’s 10th goal of the year to help restore Vancouver’s two-goal lead. Pearson also provided a useful screen on the play, completely restricting the vision of netminder Phillip Grubauer, who continues to struggle with his new club.
Pearson eventually hammered the final nail in Seattle’s coffin, firing the puck into the empty net with just under three minutes to go. With the multi-point performance, Pearson now sits seventh in team scoring with 15 points, including two goals and five assists in his last 10 games.
Let’s hope we’ll continue to see this version of Pearson for the rest of the season.