Friday, March 19, 2004

Sliding, Skidding, the need to turn things around!

The Canucks continued to have problems as they dropped an Overtime match 4-3 to Chicago Friday night. Falling behind early on the Canucks managed to pull even by the end of the third period setting up the OT frame.

Desperate to turn around the slump they find themselves in over the last week and a half the Canucks gave the impression they might be able to salvage the extra point tonight. Starting Johan Hedberg in the nets tonight for the injured Dan Cloutier, things got off to a rather rough start, as Hedberg gave up three goals on just fourteen shots. He was replaced at 6:53 of the second, by Manitoba Moose call up Alex Auld, who held the fort through the remainder of the second and third periods.

The Chi-Hawks won the game at 1:44 of OT with Tyler Arnanson scoring his third goal of the game, a flukish thing that originated as a pass from Bryan Berard that deflected off of Auld only to be batted into the net by Arnanson. With that it was game over, the Hawks gaining two rare points in front of the home crowd.

For the Canucks it’s just the continuation of playing under a black cloud. Even before the Bertuzzi suspension they had been having their problems putting together wins in a row and losing to teams that they were expected to beat. With Bertuzzi gone for the season and the playoffs they seem to be performing in a fog, not playing the full game, making mental mistakes and being outperformed at key points of the game.

The goal now is to stop the freefall, rather than worrying about catching the Avalanche they have to concern themselves with falling further down the standings. With a record of 1-4-2 in the last seven games, they’re not going into the playoffs in the most positive of lights.

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