Vancouver Canucks, Dakota Joshua

Canucks: Too Early For ‘Team Of Destiny’?

There’s some magic happening for the Canucks, especially in the determination category.

Four unanswered goals against the Edmonton Oilers in Game-1 of Round-2 to get the series started, after three unanswered in the 3rd period of Game-1 against the Predators, a Game-4 OT win in Nashville, and some late heroics in Game-6 to close it out.

“It’s a resilient group,” Vancouver head coach Rick Tocchet said after the 5-4 win over the Oilers. “Sometimes we’re not pretty, sometimes things happen, but I just feel it’s a real close group. This is when you need a close group, these situations. I thought everybody did something that contributed, we didn’t have any passengers tonight.”

And so much for little, waterbug D-men creating offence; how about giant offensive threat Nikita Zadorov. Toss in bottom-six scoring from Dakota Joshua, three goals and four assists already in the postseason, and you start to see legitimate signs.

“No matter what the score is, we’re gonna keep playing hard, keep playing the same way,” Joshua said postgame. “Tonight was an example of it. Just stay with it. We got our bounces tonight.”

Elements that win playoff series and championships.

Canucks Question

It’s still early, but the confidence is building for the Canucks and some important intangibles look promising.

The one question mark that could ruin the magic comes in the most important category: goaltending.

Will Arturs Silovs keep it together, and can he be some form of the next Antti Niemi, Matt Murray, or Jordan Binnington? All emerged at some point during their championship seasons or playoffs.

Maybe he’ll do it in combo with Casey DeSmith.

Keeping Connor McDavid from shooting the puck won’t hurt.

“Tonight we like the way we defended,” Tocchet said, “it’s one game at a time. We’ll make adjustments, both teams make adjustments, but I thought all year we’re a good defending team and I think we have something to fall back (on) if things don’t go our way, and that’s our foundation.”

Oh yeah. Add that to the ‘team of destiny’ list. Defence wins championships.

Recent Canucks:

Simmer and Gabby 13 – Boudreau’s 2nd-round picks

Rob Simpson

Rob Simpson has covered the NHL in five different decades. He’s authored 4 books on hockey and is a veteran TV and radio play-by-play man and reporter.
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