NHL Canadian Corner – March 19, 2014

Canadiens beat the Avalanche, Flames defeat the Sabres, Oilers romp over the Predators, Red Wings edge the Maple Leafs, Rangers crush the Senators, an update on Blake Wheeler and examining the Canucks playoff chances. 

Thomas Vanek (center) celebrates one of his three goals against the Avalanche.

Thomas Vanek (center) celebrates one of his three goals against the Avalanche.

MONTREAL GAZETTE: Thomas Vanek’s hat trick (his first goals since joining the Habs) spoiled Patrick Roy’s return to Montreal as the Canadiens beat the Colorado Avalanche 6-3.

CALGARY SUN: Mike Cammalleri 20th goal proved the game winner as the Flames downed the Buffalo Sabres 3-1.

EDMONTON JOURNAL:  Jordan Eberle and Ryan Nugent-Hopkins had three-point performances to lead the Oilers over the Nashville Predators 5-1.

TORONTO SUN: Gustav Nyquist scored twice as the Detroit Red Wings hung on for a 3-2 win over the Toronto Maple Leafs. Jake Gardiner and James van Riemsdyk tallied for the Leafs. The injury-ravaged Wings lost another player in this game, as defenseman Jonathan Ericsson left with a broken finger which might require surgery.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Maple Leafs goalie James Reimer wasn’t pleased with coach Randy Carlyle’s tepid comments about his performance in this game. I’ll have more in the “Rumors” section. 

OTTAWA CITIZEN: The New York Rangers stuck a dagger in the Senators playoff hopes with an 8-4 victory. The win was Henrik Lundqvist’s 302nd, breaking the franchise record previously held by Mike Richter.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Canadiens victory and the Leafs loss allowed the former to open a three-point lead over the latter for second in the Atlantic Division. The Senators remain seven points out of a wild card berth with fourteen games remaining in their season. 

WINNIPEG FREE PRESS: Blake Wheeler has one goal in his last 15 games but is finding other ways to contribute, like racking up 11 assists over that period.

VANCOUVER SUN: Elliott Pap lists several scenarios under which the Canucks can make the playoffs.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: In my opinion, these three scenarios require prayer to a higher power for help. 


  1. I hope this isn’t a double post but my first comment hasn’t shown up yet.

    What a game! Vanek, although not much of a back checker, just creates scoring opportunities! Great game by that line and the fourth line! Got to resign Weise for sure! Hopefully vanek resigns too. He said he thinks he blacked out from the first star ovation he got, just got to get his wife to enjoy the city and then back up the truck of cash!
    Emelin had a very good game as well and seems to be rounding back into his usual self.
    MacKinnon is going to be out of this world and he’s only 18!!! Wow! Patrick Roy is my fav player of all time but it’s great to beat such a good team in a emotional game. Great for character! Just wow!
    I’ll be heading to Detroit for the Habs/Wings game on the 27th and the Habs/Rangers game in Montreal for the last game of the year, I hope they keep up this level of play! Go Habs!

  2. without Kesler and Daniel Sedin any of those scenarios for the Canucks are pretty unlikely. Should they come close then you have to look back to January 16th against Phoenix being the game that everything came apart for them as Hanzal went ape$#it and hurt 3 Canucks during the game (he wrenched Santorelli’s arm over his head during a faceoff tearing his labrum, then he crosschecked Henrik Sedin bruising his ribs which in turn ended his ironman streak and cost him a silver medal at the Sochi Olympics, and finally he crosschecked Booth in the head) for all those transgressions he was only given a double minor for crosschecking Booth and a measly $5000 fine (he makes $3.1 million so that’s less than 10 minutes work for him). Santorelli was lost for the season, Sedin until after the Olympics and the Canucks lost 9 of their next 12 ( 5 of those very winnable where they lost by just a goal or 2 with one being an empty net goal). without two of their best playmakers they weren’t able to generate the offense needed to