I know you're not as keen as some to return to the expected eastern tour of disappointment. Unlike, Westy, who took us back to the doldrums before we even left for a few days. To be almost fair, Westy probably wasn't trying to dash our hopes, just douse us in the icy toxic water of reality. That stings.
He noted, in case you aren't miserable enough:
The Canucks record last year against teams from the Eastern Conference was 10-20-2.
Read that again….10-20-2. That’s terrible.Westy
With that horrible stat out of the way, how about this new bright season. Sun only shines in the west. It's a dark 0-1 record to match last season's rink of losing.
But, wait, jimmi, didn't the Tough Taco Nucks promote extending the tough, hard checking intensity after getting chewed out during yesterday's Taco Tough practice? Yes, they did.
Did they bring it? Nope, left at it at the airport lounge.
The Phillidendrems came out hot and hard. The Nucks got stuck many times in their own zone, tapping into their old tirefire habits. And neutral ice? Not neutral, Phillie owned and operated. And rarely challenged.
Just a couple minutes in, Phillie scores the 1st goal of the game. The game winning goal as it turns out. Which is not a good turn out for us.
No one was on their game - except Demmers. Caused some oh so Nucking flashbacks...
1st just about over and Nucks down 2-zip in the east. Why does this seem so familiar?jimmi
The game is over after 1. No, really.
The Nucks came back in the 2nd and applied some of that New Nucks amazing shot pressure on Hart. Shooting as many as 3 Nucking pucks versus the measly 22 the flying Flyers put on Demmers. That was the Nucks free-style, structure free period that so enamoured us in the past.
Unlike the previous couple games - which the Nucks won - seems so long ago. Unlike those games, where the Nucks eliminated all odd man chances - Nucks opened up the ice rush. So many odd ones. 8 odd man rushes against the Nucks. Ouch! The law of averages is an even mean.
The Nucks seemed to revert to the old hesitations and poor decisions. When they had the chance to shoot, they passed. When the better play was to pass, they shot into a crowd. Nucks were slower on the puck than the Team Tortilla. Tough Tacos couldn't outwork an old Tortilla.
Even Pete was struggling - got caught breaking his stick on Couturier's skates. And for the 1st time ever, Demmers couldn't stop a penalty shot.
How was the power play? Just great. Didn't give up a shortie. That was the best part.
Not a great game. More brainfarts per shift than an Edler/OEL PP.Twitch
THE LITTLE BRIGHT SPOT
The Nucks didn't give up a PP goal! On 2 chances and 2 Myers summer cottage visits.
Demmers kept the Nucks in the game - faced 41 shots!!! Phillie isn't the McOil. He kept the Nucks in a game, a game the rest of the Nucks weren't keen to play for the
win tie loss.
GAME STATS - you've seen these before - many times
EASTERN VIDEO LOWLIGHTS
Since it was an afternoon game on a Tuesday, no HNIC, so the single John gets pumped up for a game when the Nucks are flat.
Surprisingly, Taco wasn't impressed with his 2 and 1 team. He said the Nucks had "no compete". But, there must have been someone bringing it... who'd he like?
"I can't even pick one guy who played well other than Demko - It's a good lesson for us - who are we to think we're anybody".
Maybe it's the horrid time zone roulette thing. The Nucks are a night time hockey team, afternoon games are for kids. Or winning NHL teams in the east.
As Westy warned us, there are beasts in the east. And the Nucks appear to be without the required invertebrate monster mode to get even one lousy goal.
Nucks have one practice to get all beastly since they're playing the next 2 freaking afternoon games in the NHL hockey swamps of Florida. If they bring another pathetic effort like today's, their above 500 buoyancy will be sunk.
Not my problem. I will be away for the next two recaps and other NM contributors will bring the gloomy news to you. Unless it's really gloomy, then we'll just FF to Smashville next week.