Nov 4, 2011, 1:28 PM EDT
Sometimes a team plays well and still loses. This was NOT the case for the Vancouver Canucks last night in Minnesota. The Wild dominated the defending Presidents’ Trophy winners, outshooting them 45-25 and outscoring them 5-1.
What did Canucks’ coach think of his team’s effort?
“We lost 5-1 and our best player by far was our goaltender (Cory Schneider),” said Alain Vigneault. “That about sums it up right there. Our execution was non-existent and [the Wild] were the much better team tonight.”
The players didn’t disagree with their coach’s assessment. In fact, they took it even further.
“This has got to be one of the worst performances I have been part of in this jersey,” said defenseman Kevin Bieksa. “We’re not happy right now.”
Alex Burrows concurred: “It is probably the worst game we have played since I have been here.”
There were plenty of Canucks who had bad nights, but perhaps the biggest concern was the play of Bieksa, who’s struggled badly all season.
Here’s Guillaume Latendresse walking around Bieksa on the Wild’s first goal:
Bieksa signed a five-year, $23-million contract in June. The previous summer, the speculation was he’d be traded for salary-cap reasons. However, injuries to a number of Vancouver defensemen and some, uh, “savvy” cap management by the Canucks allowed them to keep the hard-nosed blue-liner that had become a favorite whipping boy of the fans.
Bieksa subsequently formed a successful shutdown partnership with newly acquired Dan Hamhuis, finishing plus-32 while playing the toughest minutes of any defensive pairing. Thus, the big contract.
So far this season, Bieksa is minus-7. Not all his fault, but some is. And if he doesn’t turn his game around, it won’t be long until the whips come out again.
“Kevin is a character individual who knows that we need him and obviously he can play better and quite a few other guys can play better,” said Vigneault.
- So…what do the Oilers do now? 6
- Of course they did: Oilers win 2015 NHL Draft Lottery, will select first overall 97
- WATCH LIVE: Tonight’s Stanley Cup playoff action 6
- Tarasenko’s hat trick has the Wild singing the Blues 12
- Bishop records first career playoff win as Lightning even series with Red Wings 3
- Hartley fined $50,000 after brawl between Flames and Canucks 20
- Blackhawks’ Darling gets the nod for Game 3 22
- Watch Live: Bolts, Blues look to even up their respective series 0
- Preds’ Weber not travelling to Chicago 15
- Report: Flames requested a review of Engelland’s instigator 17
- Of course they did: Oilers win 2015 NHL Draft Lottery, will select first overall (109)
- Stone suffered microfracture on Subban slash, Sens confirm (102)
- Report: Kings’ Stoll arrested for cocaine, MDMA possession (Updated) (98)
- Report: Players growing tired of Darryl Sutter (94)
- Bruins fire Chiarelli after missing playoffs (75)