Joshua, Åman deliver
Sometimes it’s the people that you least expect to save the day, and that’s exactly what happened with the Canucks and their fourth line.
Joshua and Åman first hit the scoresheet near the end of the first period when the score was tied at 1-1. After receiving a stretch pass from Quinn Hughes, Joshua patiently guarded the puck from the Minnesota defender before sending a nifty backhand pass to a streaking Åman.
The former Tampa Bay Lightning draft pick was able to control the puck with ease before making moves on Marc-Andre Fleury for his first-career NHL goal.
The duo was back at it again in the second period, this time with Joshua finding the back of the net. After parking himself in the blue paint, the 6’3″, 206-pound forward was able to show off his persistence and surprisingly slick hands before shovelling the puck past Fleury to re-establish his team’s one-goal lead.
Alhough they didn’t see much more ice time in the third period, Joshua and Åman still finished the evening with two goals, two assists and a combined plus four rating. And even though Lazar was the only member of the trio held pointless, he still found ways to help out his team defensively, including two key blocked shots towards the end of the third period.
Of course, Canucks fans shouldn’t expect this kind of production to continue from the fourth line moving forward. But when the team is struggling as much as they are right now, they’ll take positives from anyone.
- Riley Stillman left Thursday’s contest and did not return. The former Chicago Blackhawk was injured after taking a high hit from Joel Eriksson Ek. Stillman finished the game with nine shifts and 5 PIM in just over six minutes of ice time, which was highlighted by a questionable decision in the corner on Minnesota’s opening goal.
The Canucks will return to Rogers Arena on Saturday night, facing off against the Buffalo Sabres for their home opener. Puck drop is set for 7:00pm PST.
What are your thoughts from Thursday’s overtime loss in Minnesota? Let us know in the comments!