Dan Hamhuis won the lottery. But it’s the Vancouver Canucks’ power play that needs to cash in.
With a rare man-advantage goal in Tuesday’s 3-2 shootout loss to the Phoenix Coyotes, the Canucks will stick for now with coach John Tortorella’s new power-play formation. It looks a lot like one of old coach Alain Vigneault’s power-play formations: four forwards and a lone defenceman, set up in middle of the blue-line, who tries to load one-timers for Ryan Kesler.
The key difference — in fact, the only one — from last season’s version of this formation is that the blueliner is Hamhuis.
Best known in the National Hockey League for his shutdown role as a reliable defender, Hamhuis possesses, arguably, only the third- or fourth-hardest slapshot among Canuck defencemen.
Alex Edler, last season’s power-play ace, shoots it harder than Hamhuis. So does Jason Garrison, whose spectacular debut on the first unit a month ago was believed by some to be the sure-fire launch of a dominant season fo...