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And then there were 12: Presidents’ Trophy-winning Canucks bounced in Round 1

Apr 22, 2012, 11:18 PM EDT


The Los Angeles Kings knocked off Vancouver 2-1 (OT) in Game 5 of their Western Conference final, winning the series four games to one.

It’s a stunning exit for the back-to-back Presidents’ Trophy winners, especially since they came with a game of winning last year’s Stanley Cup final.

To the autopsy…

What happened?

Vancouver couldn’t solve Jonathan Quick. The Kings goalie allowed just eight goals over the course of the series and finished with a sparkling .957 save percentage.

The Canucks’ offense was sparked somewhat by Daniel Sedin‘s Game 4 return, but it was too little too late given their 0-3 series deficit.

(So, you could say Duncan Keith‘s elbow happened as well.)

Who takes the blame?

Secondary scorers, or lack thereof. The Canucks got four total points from Alex Burrows, Chris Higgins, David Booth, Jannik Hansen and Mason Raymond — a quintet that combined for 183 in the regular season.

Vancouver’s power play left much to be desired as well. It opened the series 0-for-14 (allowing a pair of shorthanded goals), playing a huge role in the Canucks losing the first three games.

What will they do about it?

There has been much speculation that head coach Alain Vigneault’s job will be in jeopardy. There are also real questions about the future of Roberto Luongo in Vancouver, especially after he was replaced by backup Cory Schneider…who is now essentially the new No. 1.

Fans probably won’t burn the city down, though. That’s so 2011.


And then there were 15: Is Detroit’s dynasty on its last legs?

And then there were 14: Sharks come out flat in playoffs

And then there were 13: Powerhouse Pens fall flat

  1. hockinj25 - Apr 22, 2012 at 11:18 PM

    Blow em up.

  2. prosourcetalk - Apr 22, 2012 at 11:26 PM


  3. upyourstodd - Apr 22, 2012 at 11:27 PM

    Sorry that were not sorry Vancouver.

  4. thehighcountrybear - Apr 22, 2012 at 11:34 PM

    Fire’s burning, fire’s burning, draw nearer, draw nearer…

  5. blomfeld - Apr 22, 2012 at 11:49 PM

    The LA Kings Rule !

    Such joy friends, that one is left at a complete loss for words ! Man, do we ever have a good team eh ? … we’re “cool” beyond compare and to think that this thing is only just starting ? I’m so proud to be an LA Kings fan right now, just am I’m sure you guys are too ! We’ll talk more friends in the coming days, but right now let us revel in the glory of that which is our Los Angeles Kings ! :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :)

  6. itsallniceonice - Apr 22, 2012 at 11:58 PM

    Time for the Kings twitter feed to retweet that first fire starter. Even though the Canucks aren’t the most hated team in Canada it is still hilarious and now appropriate!

  7. bensawesomeness - Apr 23, 2012 at 12:25 AM

    what, no ‘ Is it time to blow up the Canuks?’ thread? or Pittsburgh? thought this was PHT

    • lostpuppysyndrome - Apr 23, 2012 at 12:39 AM

      Just give them some time. They’ll write one soon enough.

  8. ikillchicken - Apr 23, 2012 at 12:32 AM

    Jonathan Quick…Couldn’t score…Powerplay…Daniel Sedin…Duncan Keith hit.

    So. Not. The. Issue. Not even close.

    They lost because of their own inept defensive play. We had the lead in game 5 going into the third. We should have been able to close this one out. Instead we gave up a goal. It wasn’t some skill play by Kopitar or Brown either. It was a sloppy, nothing play to their fourth line where all five of our guys are standing around in front of the net and not checking anyone. Then we come out in overtime and look even more broken. We give up chance after chance and predictably they score.

    Games 1 and 2 were even worse. You can talk about scoring all you want but we didn’t lose these games because we were shut out. We had a solid 2 goals per game. That really needs to be enough against LA. They’re the kind of team you just have to beat in tight, hard fought, 2-1 games. That’s how it is. But no, we gave up 4 gpg in return. I don’t care what’s going on with your offence. You don’t give up 4 gpg and expect to win against LA. So many of them were entirely unforced too. Especially in game 2. Game 1 wasn’t as bad. Penalties killed us and I think that was mostly just an aberration. But game 2? Brutal. How on earth do you give up two short handed goals?

    I’ll tell you how: By trying too hard on offence. They’re so caught up in trying to get the offence going out there that they’re making bad pinches and getting sloppy/fancy in their own zone. That’s just not how you beat teams like LA though (or Boston). You beat them by digging in and playing better, more defensively responsible hockey. Don’t sweat the offence. If you match their defence, in the long run, your superior offence will shine through. Just be patient. I really thought this team understood that. I mean, wasn’t that the whole bloody point of everything we’d been doing for the last month and a half? Trade Hodgson. Bring in Pahlsson. Win lower scoring games. It was the right way to go. Then, against LA, the poster team for this kind of hockey, it all goes out the window.

    I’m not trying to take anything away from LA here and there’s no question that Quick was fantastic. Maybe they still win this series regardless of how we play. We made it a whole lot easier on them though by playing them the entirely wrong way.

  9. you4real - Apr 23, 2012 at 12:44 AM

    Pretty much opens the door for Nashville to waltz into the final. With 3 mediocre teams left, they should be able to wrap up the west in 10 games or less.

  10. capsfan19 - Apr 23, 2012 at 12:49 AM

    Nashville will not “waltz” if they have to play kings or blues.

  11. highlander24 - Apr 23, 2012 at 12:53 AM

    GO KINGS GO!!!!!!!!!!!!

  12. thehighcountrybear - Apr 23, 2012 at 1:56 AM

    Well that got the stills cookin’ and the banjos singing…

    When Nashville comes up against any remaining teams with big bodies and bad attitudes, there’ll be some smoky mountain pain, bet your catfish and chitlins on that Norville!

  13. IainRWB - Apr 23, 2012 at 3:22 AM

    Predators now get Phoenix or Chicago in the Conference semis, right? Got to give us a real chance to bounce either one.

    Hopefully St Louis and LA beat each other up badly and the winner limps into the Conference finals.

  14. arbruins - Apr 23, 2012 at 6:02 AM

    Glad to see them go!

  15. tommytd - Apr 23, 2012 at 7:48 AM

    Canukleheads have zero killer instinct and play like crap when it’s all on the line and those are front office/coaching responsibilities. Break up the sisters and back up the truck while you’re at it.

  16. kiopta1 - Apr 23, 2012 at 8:41 AM

    This is why we have the NHL playoffs. Many very good teams were knocked out by teams that are up and coming or are very hungry. We may be seeing new teams becoming the new powers and seeing the new cup contenders. I really wish my wings played better but…this is how it works.

  17. 8man - Apr 23, 2012 at 3:08 PM

    Exactly! This is why we watch. If everything were straight chalk we’d have no reason to watch.


    Anxious Bruins fan in Baltimore.

  18. emperorzero - Apr 23, 2012 at 10:01 PM

    ikillchickens made some very astute and thoughtful observations aobut the Canucks. I would also add though the lack of secondary scoring depth hurt them. The superior offense should show through, but you know everyone is going to key on the Sedins so it becomes more important for goals to come elsewhere and it just didn’t happen.

    I don’t think the Canucks need to blow u0p the boat, but some changes are needed. If they can move Luongo, the cap space should give them some room to be creative.

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