The Vancouver Canucks went 0 for California dropping their second loss in two nights in the land of big surf and Disney. After a non effort on Sunday afternoon, the Canucks stayed in the game on Monday night in Los Angeles, but couldn’t get a goal as they dropped a 1-0 loss to the Kings.
The loss drops them to eighth place in the West, two points above San Jose but with a small problem to deal with, San Jose has three games in hand and the Canucks don’t play again until Saturday when they meet the Calgary Flames. By that time they could be holding down tenth place and looking way up at those they once were chased by.
These were two important games to the Canucks the opportunity to finally secure the playoff spot that was supposed to be a given at the start of the season. Instead they threw away four points on the weekend, allowed Los Angeles to re enter the playoff race and put themselves deep into a hole, one which they may not be able to clamber out of by this time next week.
Unlike Sunday, they could not blame their goaltender. Alex Auld was the difference between keeping close or giving up, as he hunkered down and kept the Kings to one goal in a game which they took control of after the first period ended. Once again the Canucks could not put together a dedicated offensive attack, pucks bounced wide, passes were missed scoring chances went by uncontested.
Edmonton defeated the Coyotes moving two points away from the Canucks, the Sharks won closing to within two and the Kings stayed alive in the race after looking gone after last week. If nothing else the Canucks needed to hold the ground they were on and after 48 hours in California they find that ground shifting quickly and not in their favour.
Five days will pass before they see action now, in normal times a five day rest heading into the playoffs would be a welcome thing, unfortunately for the Canucks heading into the playoffs may be for other teams not the boys from GM Place.